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Permanent Resident

2266 Posts

Posted - 02/09/2005 :  3:13:10 PM  Show Profile  Visit marfa's Homepage Send marfa a Private Message
How do.
The wonderful book WRITING DOWN THE BONES by Natalie Goldberg is also a wonderful book on tape - actually maybe more so as she reads from her book, makes comments about it, reads from it, etc.
There are so many things that she relates to being a writer that, for me, relate to life, creativity, relationships.
A question she asks her readers is "What feeds your writing life?" - this feels like a question that could apply to many things in our lives.
I am particularly interested in what feeds your knitting life, what gives you inspiration & gets your creative juices flowing, what or who gives you support, what jazzes you about what you are doing.

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12598 Posts

Posted - 02/09/2005 :  3:23:03 PM  Show Profile  Visit RoseByAny's Homepage Send RoseByAny a Private Message
Hmmm... I think one of the things that draws me to it is that it feeds itself, inspiration-wise. It amazes me that there are so many possibilities out of such a simple task. I learn something nearly everytime I sit down to knit, and there I am creating something entirely new, while at the same time participating in a craft that is centuries old.

"Choose your friends by their character and your socks by their color. Choosing your socks by their character makes no sense, and choosing your friends by their color is unthinkable."
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Seriously Hooked

713 Posts

Posted - 02/09/2005 :  3:25:06 PM  Show Profile Send homebodyknits a Private Message
I think for me it is seeing the finished project, a feeling of accomplishment. I love being able to do something others in my very creative family do not do. I like learning new techniques and trying new patterns. I love giving handmade gifts. I get support from my family. My husband is extremely supportive, as are my sisters, and even my children and grandchildren. I can't think of anyone in my family that isn't supportive. Although I did get teased about making a pair of socks for my DH for Valentine's Day. It is also relaxing for me and something I can do anywhere, unlike sewing, quilting, painting, and other forms of creativity.

Homebody Knits

Life is like a roll of toilet paper. The closer you get to the end the faster it goes.
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Chatty Knitter

104 Posts

Posted - 02/09/2005 :  3:34:38 PM  Show Profile Send Yarnalicious a Private Message
I read some of Natalie Goldbergs books years ago and just loved them. Her novel is very good too, Banana Rose.

My knitting is fueled by many things. Me needing an outlet for creativity and relaxation. Seeing something that I can't wait to make and wear, or see on my daughter or husband. The process and the outcome both motivate me at different times. Sometimes I just need to knit something just to knit. At others I am very focused on getting a specific project done so I can use it/wear it/give it away.

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2463 Posts

Posted - 02/09/2005 :  3:35:17 PM  Show Profile Send chris a Private Message
Hi, Martha! What a great question! I know there are others who will be more eloquent than I, but here goes:

Seeing the fabric growing out from the needles, and wondering "Who on earth figured out how to do this?"

Watching what looks like a lumpen mess relax and show its stitches as you wash and block it.

Seeing string become socks...what an amazing process it is.

Feeling the difference between yarns and fabrics as they flow through my one wool can be as coarse and scratchy as baling twine and the next feels like an angel's wings.

Having people say "You made that???"

Knitting on dpns. I love knitting on dpns.

Felting! Another of those changing processes: from string to sloppy fabric to a tight, strong fabric.

The realization of knowledge: I can read that pattern and understand what it means! I can translate that from silly abbreviations into a finished object.

The feeling of relaxation I get from knitting.

I'm sure I could think of more, but I'll leave some for the others.


Keep on knittin', mama, knittin' those blues away!
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SustaYning Member

4435 Posts

Posted - 02/09/2005 :  3:43:49 PM  Show Profile  Visit Jane's Homepage Send Jane a Private Message
Perfect, Chris! Beautiful! I couldn't say more or put it better than you have.

Well, I'll think about it, but I'm pretty sure I won't be able to come up with anything!


"Books are where things are explained to you, life is where things aren't and I'm not surprised that some people prefer books." Julian Barnes
My album:
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2995 Posts

Posted - 02/09/2005 :  4:56:03 PM  Show Profile Send RachelKnitter a Private Message
As someone who dabbled in academia, who spent good chunks of her life absorbing and re-processing things other people have done, what an utter relief it is to sit down to a task and at the end of the day hold up an object and be able to say, "this is what I did with my time." It's so beautifully simple, yet challenging, and above all, comforting. What more could I ask for?
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4942 Posts

Posted - 02/09/2005 :  5:09:26 PM  Show Profile  Visit Lissa's Homepage Send Lissa a Private Message
I'm a frustrated artist, locked in a non-talented body. Yes, I'm a superb writer (or so I'm told), but I always wanted to PAINT, or DRAW - something ethereally artsy. Imagine my surprise, many years ago, to learn that I could KNIT - create an actual garment from a pile of rope and a couple of twigs! Since virtually all of my writing is for business purposes - not the feature stories I love to write - knitting is my way of painting color, shape and texture in this world. Which is why I'm always SO devastated when my latest design doesn't fit or simply makes me look...unappealing.


Hey - I MEANT to do that!
Oh, and I now have a blog:
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1050 Posts

Posted - 02/09/2005 :  6:06:20 PM  Show Profile  Visit KysKnitnMom's Homepage Send KysKnitnMom a Private Message
I love the finished result of all those hours knitting. Knitting doesn't relax me at all, in fact some times it's down right aggrevating but I love having the finished product and being so proud of myself. I also love it when people make remarks about all my funky socks that they certainly couldn't buy in the store.

Megann, in sunny San Diego.

What if the hokey pokey really is what it's all about....
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3363 Posts

Posted - 02/09/2005 :  6:33:44 PM  Show Profile  Visit CatherineM's Homepage Send CatherineM a Private Message
I can identify with Chris, Rachel and Lissa. My day job is intense but usually devoid of color and texture, and often it can take years to see results of my labor, or my labor is abruptly cut off when some other resolution suddenly surfaces.

Knitting is soothing. It's reliable, it's relaxing, it's a chance to play in colors that suit my moods. I can't afford to redecorate the living room every time I have a mood swing, but a pair of socks is accessible and satisfying.

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1745 Posts

Posted - 02/09/2005 :  9:24:46 PM  Show Profile  Visit klfrazier's Homepage Send klfrazier a Private Message
Very simple answer - and a direct quote from the musical Rent - The opposite of war isn't peace, it's creation. The act of creating for me begets the impulse to create while combating anything negative in my life.

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Chatty Knitter

259 Posts

Posted - 02/10/2005 :  03:20:50 AM  Show Profile Send dignitynaplomb a Private Message
Originally posted by CatherineM

I can identify with Chris, Rachel and Lissa. My day job is intense but usually devoid of color and texture, and often it can take years to see results of my labor, or my labor is abruptly cut off when some other resolution suddenly surfaces.

What a way of putting it, "My day job is intense but usually devoid of color and texture..." that just hit it right on the nail for me. Yesterday I was at work at 7am and didn't return home til 7pm, I didn't see daylight at all, just the flouresant bulbs of work. I can work on a report for two days, only to have someone glance over it and put it in a pile of other reports, not knowing what effort really went into it.

Knitting takes me away from that, the feeling of yarn in my hand is so soothing, I can play with color, play with texture and most importantly my knitting is only limited by my imagination, that is very freeing for me who spends most of my day in a work environment where there is procedure, protocol and rules for everything. When i'm finished with a project it's tangible. It's there for myself or anyone else to touch or see. Most people whom I've met seem to know that an effort is envolved in a knitted project, they might appreciate the effort, but they know it is there.

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Jane from Michigan
New Pal

21 Posts

Posted - 02/10/2005 :  07:18:00 AM  Show Profile  Visit Jane from Michigan's Homepage Send Jane from Michigan a Private Message
For me, knitting has several aspects. First, it keeps my hands busy - I have trouble just sitting and reading, sitting and watching television, even sitting and visiting.. I must have an inborn need to multitask. That aspect is what has been keeping me sane through the last four months of knitting hat after hat for charity - no matter how boring the knitting gets, I'm always doing something else at the same time. Second is the pleasure I get from watching the ball of yarn turn into something useful, watching the colors or the stitches meld into patterns. Third is the sense of accomplishment when I either tackle a difficult pattern or design my own and succeed. I've been knitting for over half a century and I've lost track of the sweaters, vests, hats, afghans, mittens, and other knitted items that have come off my needles, but I can't imagine what my life would have been without knitting. It's been my art, my therapy, my joy.....

Jane from Michigan
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Warming Up

83 Posts

Posted - 02/10/2005 :  09:36:43 AM  Show Profile Send MeezerMom a Private Message
My knitting is an extension of my love of fiber - color, texture - I, too, have a very mundane, detail-oriented, uncreative job. Knitting & sewing fill a creative void and save my sanity!

You can't have too many cats, yarn, fabric, or sewing machines!
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2749 Posts

Posted - 02/10/2005 :  12:26:29 PM  Show Profile Send myshelle10 a Private Message
A chance to be creative-- to play with color and texture-- and to see *progress*. So much of what I do all day long feels like NOTHING is ever accomplished-- and so it's nice to do something where at the end of the day I can say, "Look-- I made cloth-- two inches of it!" I get to be somewhat artistic as well.

This is a great topic, btw.

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1828 Posts

Posted - 02/10/2005 :  12:44:30 PM  Show Profile Send NaProus a Private Message
I showed a medieval illumination this morning in class that showed the very first multi-tasker: Adam is digging a hole (this is after the expulsion from Paradise), and Eve is rocking a cradle with her foot, watching another child, and spinning all the while!

For me it's also the color and the texture, and that sense of play. I'm an academic, and while I love teaching and research, I like the feeling of doing something that is anti-cerebral, if you see what I mean. It's play. It's also amazing what two sticks and string can make! I get blown away by it every time I make a sock or anything at all. Incredible. And I love the feeling of being in touch with my fore-mothers.

Back from Italy
Have recently finished: a couple of Ruffles scarves, a couple of lace scarves out of Filatura di Crosa Magico, and a simple Zara scarf for my H
Planning next....
more leper bandages
a bog coat
a boobies scarf out of Zara
other stuff...
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New Zealand
1673 Posts

Posted - 02/10/2005 :  2:25:48 PM  Show Profile Send busygirl a Private Message

Knitting has been a creative outlet for me for many years, but now that I am older,it has become my therapy as well.Knitting definitely is the new yoga!
My job as an administrator is routine and detailed,so I like to knit during my breaks,and keep a small project in my desk drawer.

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Posted - 02/10/2005 :  5:34:30 PM  Show Profile  Visit's Homepage Send a Private Message
For me, it's the actual "doing" of the knitting which keeps me inspired to knit. I like that I can look at something somewhere, think to myself-- "I can do that," then I go do it. I'm not stuck to the exact colors and design of the original designer of the article. I can change it however I want. I also like dreaming up my own projects, and watching them either come to fruition or fail. When I fail, I learn so much-- and the next time, I'm a better knitter.
Knit something PINK! Open to all skill levels- any pattern is acceptable. Knitting blog
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Lace Lunatic
Gabber Extraordinaire

524 Posts

Posted - 02/10/2005 :  5:45:32 PM  Show Profile Send Lace Lunatic a Private Message
It's the process of new learning and new discoveries about the craft and myself as I produce serviceable fabric. Projects take on a life of their own while becoming an integral part of my life. An example would be the Shetland lace shawl I spent the better part of a year on, making design decisions as I went, and spending time with my very crippled favorite dog in his final months. The project is his as much as mine. He died before I finished knitting on the lace edging and I added a few strands of his coat to the next row of knitting.

Every new project is an adventure and every finished project closes a chapter.

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New Pal

New Zealand
3 Posts

Posted - 02/10/2005 :  6:02:26 PM  Show Profile  Visit bythebay's Homepage Send bythebay a Private Message
Why do I knit? Such a little question but has generated such a lot of complicated thinking.

I like the doing, the having something useful to do with my hands, but it's more than that - sometimes it's the calming, repetitive motion that gently eases out pressures and complicated thoughts from my head, down my arms and flicks them off the needles.

But other times, it's the opportunity for problem solving, doing the maths, trying things one way then another, being insanely pleased with myself when one of my own ideas works out.

Then again, I love the anticipation - what could this yarn be? how would I enjoy knitting and/or wearing that garment? could I manage that lace pattern? each new idea is like an unwrapped gift - just for me!

Oh, and that's before we even get to the pride and satisfaction of having made and wearing/gifting something unique and tangible. Being on the side of the makers in this world, not the breakers. "Practicing random acts of kindness and senseless acts of beauty" as they say.

Happiness is in the setting and achieving of small goals. So really, knitting is happiness!
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Chatty Knitter

139 Posts

Posted - 02/10/2005 :  6:12:50 PM  Show Profile Send Jewles a Private Message
So many reasons to knit and not enough time to do it. I recently started knitting again after a 15 year hiatus. It is so relaxing, and rewarding when you see your project taking shape. Teaching my 2 sons to knit. My younger one is sticking with it and wants me to teach him how to do 'fancy stitches'. He has become quite proficient at knits and purls.
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