Knitting: the early years

The blog of the woman I’ve done some test knitting for was asking for stories about when you learned to knit. I submitted my memories … bit of a trip down memory lane.

I can’t remember exactly when I learned – but I must’ve been 6 or 7. My mum knitted some, but it was mostly my grandmothers back then – they made us amazing aaron & bobbled jackets, dress/knicker/bonnet/bootie sets for our dolls, pom pom hats etc.
I was first shown how to knit by Mum’s mother, she was Danish so I was taught the Danish way (holding the wool in the left hand, not the right) so was watched with much curiosity by other school friends and their mothers when I ‘knitted funny’. I liked knitting a lot and was very patient with it, my knit rows were always very tight, and purl very loose but after a year or so I realised that my other grandmother knitted the ‘normal’ way and she seemed to go much faster so I spent hours on the couch next to her when they visited copying her and eventually taught myself to knit in the normal style – with much better results! To this day I think I still cast on and increase Danish style, but everything else normal style.
I can’t remember the specifics of what I was knitting as a kid – blankets for my doll’s cot, crocheting coin purses and table mats but I’m sure that before I went to high school I’d knitted my first jersey for myself – a really hideous green, pink and royal blue fluffy crew neck – those colours were big at the beginning of the 80’s!
I’ve knitted on and off most of my life but I probably stopped doing it regularly in my mid 20’s and only picked it up again about 4 years ago (almost 10 years on) when I was having a particularly stressful time at work – one day I got home and in the mail there was a ball of wool, knitting needles, and a pattern for a kid’s toy with a note from my mother that said “perhaps you need to find something else to do other than work” and I haven’t stopped since.


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