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View Full Version : What has been your experience when knitting in public?


Antares
01-31-2012, 12:18 PM
I was just reading about Olha's incident while knitting in public (What'cha Knittin' thread), and it got me wondering what other knitters have experienced.

So what comments have you encountered while knitting in public? Have they been mostly positive? Negative? Neutral?

I'd love to hear about some of them!

justplaincharlotte
01-31-2012, 12:45 PM
From the general public, the reaction has pretty much been neutral. But the reaction from my doctors has pretty much been surprise, and I like it that way!

ShanaHoo
01-31-2012, 12:50 PM
I knit at work a lot. Everyone is nice about it. They usually ask, "What are you making this time?" or "Did you finish [insert project]?" Sometimes I get annoyed if the same person asks me the same question several days in a row, but I can usually avoid that by knitting at my desk instead of in the breakroom.

Antares
01-31-2012, 12:51 PM
From the general public, the reaction has pretty much been neutral. But the reaction from my doctors has pretty much been surprise, and I like it that way!

Neutral and surprised are good! But why are they so surprised?

Antares
01-31-2012, 12:54 PM
I knit at work a lot. Everyone is nice about it. They usually ask, "What are you making this time?" or "Did you finish [insert project]?" Sometimes I get annoyed if the same person asks me the same question several days in a row, but I can usually avoid that by knitting at my desk instead of in the breakroom.

Glad to hear most of your encounters are positive. That's encouraging. Yeah, I can see how someone asking you every day about a project would be annoying. Of course, they may just want to see your progress, but there's no need for them to get daily updates!!

Thanks for sharing.

Olha
01-31-2012, 01:46 PM
I sort of hijacked Artlady's thread with my story but in short it was someone I know who said she coudn't knit because it was 'doing nothing'. Mostly my reaction was disbelief... because, really, you probably shoudn't say it to people who have less productive hobbies or even just sit on the couch. Maybe they are coming up with a new groundbreaking idea or praying for world's peace?

Anyway, recently I knit a lot in public cause I have tiny 'on the go' projects and keep the yarn in my pocket. I use dpns for those so some people stare. Mostly they don't even comment... maybe because it's hard to make eye contact or something. And usually I am surrounded by parents who are busy whatching their kids or playing with their phones while waiting. If someone asks if it's hard, I show a few stitches slowly but that's about it.

I probably use knitting in public not only to fill the time but also as a bate for other knitters since I have no knitting friends... It hasn't worked yet but maybe if I sit outside in a high traffic area and smile to everyone, it will :)

Antares
01-31-2012, 02:55 PM
I sort of hijacked Artlady's thread . . . . . .
I probably use knitting in public not only to fill the time but also as a bate for other knitters since I have no knitting friends... It hasn't worked yet but maybe if I sit outside in a high traffic area and smile to everyone, it will :)

Oh, I don't think you hijacked ArtLady's thread. It appears to be somewhat on topic even now (at least it's still discussing scrubbies), but you did get me to thinking about this and wondering! Always a good thing!

I hadn't thought about using public knitting as a lure (I'm a fisherwoman, so I should have)! It's a great idea--especially after my attempt to find fellow knitters at a craft competition didn't pan out (of course, if I had spent more than 15 minutes there, it might have helped . . . .).

Anywhoo . . . maybe people will do more than just ask you questions and stare. Maybe they'll want to learn to knit!

JLonier
01-31-2012, 04:12 PM
I never leave the house without some sort of project if I don't already have one in my car. I find most people pretend they don't even notice what I'm doing. The only direct comments I've ever gotten were from crochet-ers telling me how they wish they could knit. Which is funny because most knitters I know also crochet.

My worst experience happened when I forgot to lock my car when I was running errands. Someone stole my favorite knitting bag (had a picture of yarn balls on it and said "ball sack" on the side) and the project within. :waah: Dunno why anyone would want to steal an unfinished knitting project

Antares
01-31-2012, 04:17 PM
I never leave the house without some sort of project if I don't already have one in my car. I find most people pretend they don't even notice what I'm doing. The only direct comments I've ever gotten were from crochet-ers telling me how they wish they could knit. Which is funny because most knitters I know also crochet.

My worst experience happened when I forgot to lock my car when I was running errands. Someone stole my favorite knitting bag (had a picture of yarn balls on it and said "ball sack" on the side) and the project within. :waah: Dunno why anyone would want to steal an unfinished knitting project

Yeah, I have noticed that people pretend you're not there when you're knitting. They also kinda give you these sideways "what-the-heck-are-you-doing" looks, too! Like it's impolite to be curious or something. Very funny!

So sorry to hear about your stolen knitting! That's a bummer. Maybe the thief will finish your project and return it to you! Okay, maybe not!

lenaznap
01-31-2012, 06:15 PM
Yeah, I have noticed that people pretend you're not there when you're knitting. They also kinda give you these sideways "what-the-heck-are-you-doing" looks, too! Like it's impolite to be curious or something. Very funny!

It's kinda like taking a book on an airplane with you so your seatmate will be less likely to strike up a conversation when you aren't in the mood. When your eyes & attention are on something (book, knitting, crochet, iPod, ...) people just generally believe it is polite not to interfere and distract your attention.

However, I guess there are always exceptions to the rule I guess. Last fall while knitting a hat on an airplane, the 70ish guy in the seat next to me started talking to me within minutes of the yarn coming out after take off about the hat, the pattern, how long I have been knitting, what was I knitting next, how long would it take to finish the hat, etc. and then this conversation attracted the flight attendant who joined in and talked about her craft hobbies.

At the time I guessed he might have been less likely to comment on the hat if it had not contained the logo of a university during football season (and we did talk about recent and upcoming games and previous seasons/players/coaches while I was knitting too), but perhaps that was just unjustified stereotyping on my part to think that a white haired male would be more likely to start a conversation to talk about football than knitting.

Jan in CA
01-31-2012, 06:22 PM
My experiences have always been positive. People tend to glance and either ignore me or smile. Some ask what I'm making. Granted I generally only knit in the yarn shop, but the few times it's been out like at Starbucks or on a plane and it's been fine.

ShanaHoo
01-31-2012, 08:17 PM
I probably use knitting in public not only to fill the time but also as a bate for other knitters since I have no knitting friends... It hasn't worked yet but maybe if I sit outside in a high traffic area and smile to everyone, it will :)

HA, I'm using that strategy as well! No luck yet. I know there is a knitting group that meets a few miles from me (thanks Ravelry!) but I'm nervous about just walking in to an established group of people and being all, "Hey, strangers! Accept me!" Also, I think they are older ladies, which is fine because I'm an old soul, but I would also like to have friends closer to my age to relate to.

I really do need knitting friends though. When I say, "I don't have the correct needle for this project, I need to go to the yarn store" I want someone that will say, "Oooh! Let's go now!" instead of the "You do NOT need to go to the Yarn Store" that I get from my friends and family now. I can USUALLY convince the Boyfriend to take me if I go in with a purpose and it is a quick trip. But sometimes I just want to stand there for 25 minutes touching things!

GrumpyGramma
01-31-2012, 09:44 PM
Recently I played "carpool dummy" and went to Seattle with my DD for a dr.'s appt. With a passenger she can use the HOV lane and actually get there on time. I took knitting with me, knitted in the car and was surprised I could do it, I can't read and crocheting has never worked well when I'm riding. Anyhow I digress. I took the knitting into the waiting room and was working on 2 @ a time leg warmers for my GD. Another mother-daughter duo was there and they were interested in what I was doing, amazed I could do 2 on the same needles as I was, asked a few questions, told me my work was beautiful. They were both crocheters. That's my only real in-public knitting experience. I take knitting with me just about anywhere I go anymore. I'm sure there will be more times I knit in public. If I ride a bus I will definitely take knitting, those needles can look like "maybe I don't want to bother her!"

Olha
01-31-2012, 10:12 PM
but I'm nervous about just walking in to an established group of people and being all, "Hey, strangers! Accept me!" Also, I think they are older ladies, which is fine because I'm an old soul, but I would also like to have friends closer to my age to relate to.

I can only share my experince with knitting groups and based on it, I would encourage you to try. There are some that are basically social groups of people who chat in a coffee shop while knitting. If you are not clicking with them, yeah, it is somewhat awkward cause they share their stories and lives... So I would recommend more structured groups that are actually about knitting. Then it really doesn't matter how old you are. You basically only connect over your knitting stuff and the differences don't really matter. The basis for acceptance is needles and yarn :)

laikabear
01-31-2012, 11:51 PM
I like to KIP in places where I have to wait - dentist or doctor's offices, and airports. When people comment, I've most often heard:


I could never knit, I don't have the patience.
Will you make me one too? I'll pay you for it!
Do they really allow you to bring needles on the plane?


I think the patience one is the funniest. I am about the most impatient person there is. Knitting while I'm "trapped" waiting for something is the only way I keep calm!

Jan in CA
02-01-2012, 12:21 AM
Ohhh I LOVE my knitting group! It's at my LYS and they are the nicest bunch of people! I always go on Friday and often on Tuesday to knit with the spinners. ;)

sakura-panda
02-01-2012, 12:10 PM
My experience has been overall positive, but I'm terrible at remembering negative events. :blush:

I knit because I can't stand to just do nothing and knitting is sociable and multi-tasking-friendly. When I'm by myself and I notice someone watching me, I'll start talking to them about something random (not about my knitting -- it's usually about the weather).

I figure if they are so bored that they are watching *me* knit :knitting: then they are probably willing to chat with me too. (That assumption hasn't failed me yet! :teehee:) If nothing else, it puts me on friendly terms with the people around me, even if we end up not talking about much after all.

justplaincharlotte
02-01-2012, 04:44 PM
Neutral and surprised are good! But why are they so surprised?

They're surprised because I have no fine motor control in the fingers of my right hand after a stroke. It works pretty much like a prosthesis, open/close. I knit English, and throw with the yarn threaded through my right fist for tension. Compared to you guys, I knit slower than old people walk, about half as fast on a good day. :-P

Doctors tend to forget that limitations are just that, limitations. They're not necessarily impossibilities. They're simply an opportunity to live the motto of improvise, adapt, overcome. I really missed crocheting, and while I can no longer crochet anything more substantial than an edging on existing fabric, I CAN knit. Stubborn is as stubborn does. Guess what my middle name is?? :teehee:

justplaincharlotte
02-01-2012, 04:49 PM
I've never been lucky enough to run across someone else knitting in public.

Is there an etiquette for that, and what do you do in that instance?

GrumpyGramma
02-01-2012, 05:20 PM
They're surprised because I have no fine motor control in the fingers of my right hand after a stroke. It works pretty much like a prosthesis, open/close. I knit English, and throw with the yarn threaded through my right fist for tension. Compared to you guys, I knit slower than old people walk, about half as fast on a good day. :-P

Doctors tend to forget that limitations are just that, limitations. They're not necessarily impossibilities. They're simply an opportunity to live the motto of improvise, adapt, overcome. I really missed crocheting, and while I can no longer crochet anything more substantial than an edging on existing fabric, I CAN knit. Stubborn is as stubborn does. Guess what my middle name is?? :teehee:
Charlotte, I had no idea. You amaze me. You are an even greater inspiration to me than you already were. Keep showing them just how stubborn you are!

justplaincharlotte
02-01-2012, 05:47 PM
GG, thanks so very, very much. :aww:

I'll be honest, it's taken me 14 years to figure out that I could and how. It's been a fascinating process and I'm so grateful it finally happened. And THAT couldn't have happened without the help of you and everyone else who's helped me here.

As my daughter would say, you KH'ers are covered in awesomesauce!:woot:

And I love your new signature, BTW!

LoveBugAngel
02-01-2012, 06:39 PM
At work, my students all are amazed and most ask me if they can try, and ask if I can teach them!

When I am on the bus, I notice a lot of people staring.

Jan in CA
02-01-2012, 06:58 PM
Good for you, Charlotte! :thumbsup:

I treat people as I would want to be treated when I see someone knitting. I always smile and if I have the time I ask what they are making and tell them it's going to be beautiful. Maybe that's because I'm knitter already, but we all need a little support. :hug:

fatoldladyinpjs
02-02-2012, 12:44 PM
I ride a bus to and from work. I don't knit on it but should start. It's a big waste of time just riding around on it doing nothing. I guess I'm afraid of breaking needles trying to stuff it in the small locker at work. When I do knit in public, people ask me what I'm making. One guy leaned over the bus seat behind me and watched intently. He had never seen anyone knitting. I don't think people take the time to do quality work like they used to. It used to be that every little girl at least learned how to darn socks and sew on buttons. Some learned needlework. They don't do that so much anymore.

I came across this World War 1 website. What a difference! The public was asked for socks and other winter garments for the troops. Everyone knit, including men and school children. You were considered selfish if you knit something for yourself. Too bad everybody doesn't knit like this today.

http://www.historylink.org/index.cfm?DisplayPage=output.cfm&File_Id=5721

trvvn5
02-03-2012, 10:08 AM
As a guy knitter, I tend to get a different response than most of you ladies. Generally its disbelief. Some people laugh at me. Some people find it interesting. Some people comment about how odd it is for a guy to be doing a woman's craft. Younger people tend to think it's cooler than middle aged people and older ladies tend to thinks it pretty neat that they see a guy knitting. So it runs the gamit of reponses.

Purlster
02-03-2012, 10:18 AM
I second the guy knitter reaction. As a guy knitter, I get all kinds of comments. I knit on the commuter train to Boston (one hour each way), so most people know me as a knitter by now.

Antares
02-03-2012, 10:45 AM
Wow, Charlotte! I, too, am impressed with your determination (14 years? WOW!) and your can-do attitude! What an inspiration you are!!

And to the guy knitters: Of course guys can knit--if they want to. Hey, my husband learned to crochet (he made the cat a blankie). It's just kinda unusual to see guys knitting, though, which is probably why you get the looks and comments that you do.

It's kind of like seeing a woman fishing (one who knows what she's doing)--like me! For some odd reason, fishing is seen as an "only guys" pastime, so I know exactly how you feel. But I love to fish, and comments and stares aren't going to keep me from it.

If I see someone else knitting in public (or crocheting or even quilting), I usually do the same thing that Jan does--ask them what they're making, comment on how beautiful it is, and if they seem interested in talking, find out how long they've been doing that particular craft and what their favorite project was.

PJs: Thanks for sharing the link. I have an electric coop cookbook that goes back 50 or 60 years (with quotes and stories from the magazine), and it's fascinating to read what life was like during WWII and before electricity was available in rural areas. People had such a different mindset even then, didn't they? Wish we could get some of that back!! And by the way, I'd recommend knitting on the train--even if all you take is one small project with smallish needles!!

janae1987
02-03-2012, 10:57 AM
im heading out for vacation next thursday and am planning to take some knitting and chrocheting along! ill have to report back how people reacted! the only place i really KIP is at work and i'm the youngest in my office....but quite a few years and i get a lot of "you knit? i didnt know girls your age knit" ...or "how did you learn?" i personally love when someone asks me how i learned to knit - the look on their face when i say youtube is HILARIOUS!!! that was before i found all the amazing videos here! my other favorite question is from my friends - why do you do that? its really pretty simple - i needed something to do while the boyfriend plays xbox! LOL!!!!!!!!!

justplaincharlotte
02-03-2012, 05:03 PM
Just had to share:

In a waiting room yesterday, I had my first brief "I don't have enough patience to knit" conversation with a non-knitter. All I could do was smile when she said that. That is the funniest thing anyone could say to me. DH snorted in laughter, and had to pretend he was laughing at the TV! :roflhard:

As for guy knitters: my MIL knit for soldiers during both World Wars, and taught my husband to knit when he was a boy. Unfortunately he no longer does, but he cherishes the time spent with her learning. As a result I have the value added bonus of a spouse who "gets it." My MIL was such an awesome lady! :heart:

salmonmac
02-03-2012, 05:28 PM
I bring my knitting along on vacation trips and often take it to a nearby park to knit in public. Often the reaction from others is, "Gosh, I wish I'd brought my knitting along."
I pulled out my needles in the doctor's office last month while waiting for my husband. The next lady through the door sat down and took out her knitting. When the third knitter came through the door, she said she'd come over and join the knitting corner. At that point we outnumbered the non-knitters.

Antares
02-03-2012, 11:00 PM
Charlotte: Thanks for sharing your recent experience! Just from what you've mentioned so far, it appears that the person who was talking about patience doesn't know the half of it!! No wonder you smiled and your husband laughed. I guess what people really mean is that they don't have enough desire to learn to knit in the first place!!! Or perhaps a better way to say it is that their patience overpowers their desire to learn.

Salmonmac: What a really neat experience! I would LOVE to have even one knitter (or crocheter) sit down beside me and ply their craft. And you had two! Cool!

Daylilydayzed
02-04-2012, 07:01 PM
When I was knitting a baby blanket for one of my gardening friends on the The WeatherVane.com . I would sit in the waiting room while hubby would go in to see the doctor. I would be knitting along and people would wander over and ask what are you making I would reply that it was a baby blanket.
Then when I started making string shopping bags, my doctor wanted to know how to do it, one of the nurses had to have the pattern and so I told her it really wasn't a pattern, just a rextangle of either garter stitch or seed stitch , a stable base, then pick up stitches along all 4 sides and start knitting with this stitch pattern: on an even number of stitches Row 1 is knit. Row 2 is K2tog, Yo . Repeat these twop rows until bag is as long as you want. Then knit a few rows of the same base stitch to stop the stretchy part and bind off. Then pick your placement for a strap or two if you like. Attach your yarn and pick up about 10 stitches and knit it in the stitch of choice until it is as long as you like it and attach it opposite from where you started the strap. Always use a cotton yarn. Small yarn yields a smaller bag than worsted weight cotton yarn. Mercerized yarn makes a very nice bag with a silky feel. Now when I am at the VA clinics they are showing me what they have made.

TEMA
02-04-2012, 11:51 PM
While waiting my turn at the lab to get some blood work done, I noticed a young lady busy knitting away on something... a scarf, I think.
Anyway, sitting beside me were a couple of older ladies and they also noticed the young woman knitting. She was using the continental stitch and the ladies were just dumbfounded and could understand what she was doing.
One lady leaned into the other and whispered (quite loudly), 'I don't know what she is doing but it's not the way I do it'. I thought that was quite funny... but I could see they were quite affronted that she should be doing something different.
I don't usually knit in public (unless I count when I'm waiting at dr's offices) but I have seen others knit and I usually go up to them and ask what they are knitting. (I'm just nosy!)
They are usually very good about it and let me in on it, sometimes even showing me their pattern.
Further to that, I have joined 3 or 4 ladies and we knit when we get together. It's the best fun.
TEMA

ArtLady1981
02-06-2012, 07:58 PM
"IN PUBLIC", if you mean the park, the waiting rooms of dentists, doctors and hospitals, in an airport/airplane, on a cruise, or the beach...I haven't had any negative feedback, but I've had a few nice conversations that I otherwise wouldn't have! These is something 'friendly' about the presence of a knitter in the room that draws others to strike up a conversation.

I have never knit in church or business meetings. I feel like it would appear rude to those who have worked hard to put together their presentation. I put myself in their place...and I know it would hurt my feelings to see someone supposedly so disinterested in what I have to say that they must knit to fill their time with something worthwhile.

I used to knit when visiting friends and family, but I don't anymore. I used to knit at social functions, like a baby shower...but I don't anymore. I began to feel like it's rude to be knitting when everyone else is visiting. Or that I appear to be an obsessive person. (this is not a judgement on anyone else who choses to knit wherever)

I mostly knit at home, and on vacation in the mountains. On the commute back and forth from the mountains.

I get an incredible amount of knitting done as it is. Enough is enough. :doh:

TEMA
02-06-2012, 08:57 PM
As a guy knitter, I tend to get a different response than most of you ladies. Generally its disbelief. Some people laugh at me. Some people find it interesting. Some people comment about how odd it is for a guy to be doing a woman's craft. Younger people tend to think it's cooler than middle aged people and older ladies tend to thinks it pretty neat that they see a guy knitting. So it runs the gamit of reponses.

Just so you know.... Knitting was man's work at one time... the ladies just took it over...
TEMA

fatoldladyinpjs
02-07-2012, 01:36 AM
"IN PUBLIC", if you mean the park, the waiting rooms of dentists, doctors and hospitals, in an airport/airplane, on a cruise, or the beach...I haven't had any negative feedback, but I've had a few nice conversations that I otherwise wouldn't have! These is something 'friendly' about the presence of a knitter in the room that draws others to strike up a conversation.

I have never knit in church or business meetings. I feel like it would appear rude to those who have worked hard to put together their presentation. I put myself in their place...and I know it would hurt my feelings to see someone supposedly so disinterested in what I have to say that they must knit to fill their time with something worthwhile.

I used to knit when visiting friends and family, but I don't anymore. I used to knit at social functions, like a baby shower...but I don't anymore. I began to feel like it's rude to be knitting when everyone else is visiting. Or that I appear to be an obsessive person. (this is not a judgement on anyone else who choses to knit wherever)

I mostly knit at home, and on vacation in the mountains. On the commute back and forth from the mountains.

I get an incredible amount of knitting done as it is. Enough is enough. :doh:

Our church allows knitters to knit at Bible studies and other meetings, as long as it's something for charity. We have a prayer shawl group that you'll frequently see knitting away. They also have knitters who make baby sweaters to send off to third world countries in new mothers' kits.

ArtLady1981
02-07-2012, 03:11 AM
Our church allows knitters to knit at Bible studies and other meetings, as long as it's something for charity. We have a prayer shawl group that you'll frequently see knitting away. They also have knitters who make baby sweaters to send off to third world countries in new mothers' kits.

I think that's entirely different, and very nice as well. No hurt feelings, no misunderstandings. It's openly "allowed", maybe even encouraged. So no one in attendance will spend the hour wondering what the knitter is thinking!

Thanks for sharing your experience.

JudyD
02-07-2012, 08:34 AM
All my experiences of KIP have been positive. I especially like it when the ladies tell me they haven't knit in a while and should dig up their needles and yarn. (I sincerely hope they do!)

I have had several ladies tell me they know nothing about using circular needles and are so glad I took the time to explain their use to them. (I'm usually working on a baby blanket and they can see how easy and comfortable they are to work with.)

Judy

Gigic
02-07-2012, 04:27 PM
I am new here, but thought I would respond. I commute everyday on the train, which is where I do most of my knitting, nobody ever really says anything, but this morning someone commented that she should start knitting. Nobody has ever said anything negative. Although someone did once crack a joke when I was making a wrap with my size 19 needles!!!

Lighting57
02-07-2012, 06:28 PM
YOU GO GIRL!!!!
I did not know that either Charlotte and think it's great that you found a way to make it work. I know too many able bodied people that love to spout,"I can't!", in a whinny voice. Can't never did anything is what I always told my children. I refused to allow them the option of quitting so easily. Thanks for giving us a glimpse into your everyday life.

fatoldladyinpjs
02-07-2012, 11:13 PM
I had to laugh today while knitting and waiting for the bus at the station. This kid sat down. He was in his twenties, backward hat, gang type attire that the kids are all wearing. My first thought was that he was maybe a trouble maker. He watched me knit and said to me that knitting was fun. His mom knits him things all the time and taught him to knit, too.

Antares
02-08-2012, 02:32 PM
Wow! There are some great stories here about knitting in public. Thanks for sharing!

I had my own KIP experience today: We were at the doctor's office, and a nurse went on and on about how "perfect" my knitting looked. By the way, it's far from perfect, and I wasn't even knitting anything particularly beautiful or exciting--just a ski mask for my nephew. Anyway, she gave the line that she didn't have the patience to learn to knit. I, of course, immediately told her about our FAMOUS Charlotte (without mentioning her name) and her perseverance! It made Nurse Lisa stop and think!

AngelaR
02-09-2012, 09:20 AM
I find I have to keep stopping and listen to someone natter on about how their grandma knit or some great aunt crochets and what's the difference and what am I making, can I knit sweaters.... ad infinitum. I have found the best way to avoid this is to wear my ear buds with my iPod at max volume. I've found that people are reluctant to actually touch you to ask you a silly question unless it really means something to them and not just idle conversation.

The only time I enjoy yarn conversation is in the LYS with people who knit as well.

Antares
02-09-2012, 09:58 AM
Wow, Angela! That seems a little over the top to me (just my opinion). A lot of people would see this as people being friendly and trying to strike up a conversation based on common ground. I, and many others, enjoy it when people want to talk about knitting.

But to each their own, I guess.

MoniDew
02-09-2012, 01:17 PM
one time I was knitting in public, while waiting in a hospital waiting room (to take pretty, pretty pictures of my boobies). I got up to use the restroom, and when I came back out, there was another woman sitting in my seat KNITTING. I told her that she chose that chair because I had warmed up the knitting juju in it for her. :roflhard:

then I got my sweater back out and warmed up another chair for the next knitter to come along.

AngelaR
02-10-2012, 09:45 AM
Wow, Angela! That seems a little over the top to me (just my opinion). A lot of people would see this as people being friendly and trying to strike up a conversation based on common ground. I, and many others, enjoy it when people want to talk about knitting.

But to each their own, I guess.

It's well known that I am not a people person and actually avoid conversing with them if at all possible. I'm like the love child of House and Sherlock Holmes. My husband came up with that observation.

Antares
02-10-2012, 10:46 AM
It's well known that I am not a people person and actually avoid conversing with them if at all possible. I'm like the love child of House and Sherlock Holmes. My husband came up with that observation.

Hey, it takes all kinds to make the world go 'round, and you obviously fit perfectly in your particular niche!!

It's a bit of a shame, though, that all these friendly people who want to talk to you about knitting are bothering you when they could be having great conversations with other knitters!

I dunno--maybe you're like those people who don't like cats. You know the ones: They hate cats, and yet all cat's in the vicinity make a beeline for them!

:shrug:

laikabear
02-10-2012, 12:58 PM
I dunno--maybe you're like those people who don't like cats. You know the ones: They hate cats, and yet all cat's in the vicinity make a beeline for them!

:shrug:

It's because when the cat walks into the room, the only person that doesn't look directly at the cat is the cat-hater. All the cat lovers stare at the cat in delight. Feeling threatened, the cat walks right to the non-threatening person.

I've seen it happen with my Mom and Dad - they both cannot stand cats. It's pretty funny to watch their skin crawl as the poor cat lovingly weaves in and out of their legs. :rofl:

Maybe the curious public is the same way... Angela, try staring directly at anyone who sees you knitting and see if it repels them! :mrgreen:

ShanaHoo
02-10-2012, 11:37 PM
We are having a really slow couple of weeks at work, since we have had to relocate. I mean REALLY SLOW. I mean so slow that at 9:30am we start asking if it is lunch time yet because that is the only thing we have to do all day.

I've been knitting at work for about 2 years. Everyone knows I knit and almost everyone has given the "I wish I could do that/that looks so cool/I tried to learn once but" speech at one time or another. Since we've had soooooo much down time lately, we decided to take advantage and have knitting class at work this afternoon. Another girl I work with and I taught 5 other girls how to cast on and work the knit stitch. No one cried (though one girl did scream a little bit when she accidentally slid all of her stitches off of the needle) and no one put any eyes out, so I deem it a success. A couple of the girls even said they were going to stop at the craft store after work and get supplies to practice with.

I officially declare this day my most favorite moment of knitting in public.

GrumpyGramma
02-11-2012, 01:31 AM
We are having a really slow couple of weeks at work, since we have had to relocate. I mean REALLY SLOW. I mean so slow that at 9:30am we start asking if it is lunch time yet because that is the only thing we have to do all day.

I've been knitting at work for about 2 years. Everyone knows I knit and almost everyone has given the "I wish I could do that/that looks so cool/I tried to learn once but" speech at one time or another. Since we've had soooooo much down time lately, we decided to take advantage and have knitting class at work this afternoon. Another girl I work with and I taught 5 other girls how to cast on and work the knit stitch. No one cried (though one girl did scream a little bit when she accidentally slid all of her stitches off of the needle) and no one put any eyes out, so I deem it a success. A couple of the girls even said they were going to stop at the craft store after work and get supplies to practice with.

I officially declare this day my most favorite moment of knitting in public.

:cheering: :cheering: :cheering:
:woot: :woohoo: :happydance: :thumbsup: :knitting: :yay:

Party in honor of your most favorite moment of knitting in public. :balloons:

That is totally beyond cool. :thumbsup:

AngelaR
02-11-2012, 11:07 AM
I tried knitting at work and it was worse than knitting at the mall waiting for the children to finish shopping. The interruptions caused me so many mistakes on a sweater I was knitting that I frogged it and made caps.

This is the deal, when you knit in public, you spend most of your time talking to people who know nothing about knitting about... knitting. So, instead of knitting you're just talking about it. Why bother, unless you have trouble starting conversation and you're dying to chat with someone? Do you see my point?

However, I would love to knit with other knitters in public, because we would all understand and could talk while knitting and not get hurt if someone was being quiet while counting stitches. And, if history serves, we would be talking about anything BUT knitting.

laikabear
02-11-2012, 12:29 PM
That is so funny, Angela! I hardly ever get questions about my knitting when I KIP. Usually I only knit in waiting rooms at the doctor or dentist, or in airports/ on planes, though.

The extent of questions I usually get is: What are you making? :)

I do knit during downtimes at work, but my coworkers usually aren't that interested in what I'm doing.

Jan in CA
02-11-2012, 01:29 PM
I officially declare this day my most favorite moment of knitting in public.

:lol: Great story and it does sound like an awesome day!

chixdilla
02-16-2012, 05:23 PM
I'm always pretty self-conscious about pulling my knitting out in public, I don't know why! I have done it a couple of times though, in the waiting room or at the airport, and no one's ever said anything to me about it. I did see a lady knitting at the airport, and since I'd never seen anyone knitting out in public before, I got so excited I wanted to shout, "Ohemgee, I knit too, let's be best friends!" but I held my tongue. Lol.

janae1987
02-17-2012, 05:49 PM
I just got back from vacation yesterday! and i had a couple different KIP experiences. while at the airport waiting to leave i took out a baby blanket that i had been working and noticed a lot of people watching me but no one ever came up to talk to me - i smiled and tried to look as friendly as possible but nothing! it was so strange! and then yesterday on our flight home i was working on it again and the gal sitting next to me was watching and finally asked what i was working on and so it started! it turns out that both she and the gal on the aisle seat all knitted! we chit chatted about knitting for almost hte entire 2 hour flight! it was wonderful!

Woodi
02-18-2012, 04:07 PM
I belong to a weekly knitting group which talks and talks - about everything BUT knitting. I'd like to find a group that would like to talk about knitting itself....maybe wherever Stephanie Pearl McPhee goes.

Say, she is coming to our local LYS in August! Excited.

Jan in CA
02-18-2012, 07:21 PM
My group talks about all kinds of stuff from what we saw on TV, the movies and also lots of knitting. Someone is almost always "auditioning" yarn colors or buttons for their next project and we all give opinions. It's lots of fun!

knitcindy
02-22-2012, 10:10 AM
Whenever I whip out my current project I inevitably hear 1 of 2 questions/comments!!!

#1 - My grandmother used to do that!!!

#2 - What are you making??

Mostly everyone's comments beyond that are VERY positive. Since I've taught a knitting class at my church, whenever I've got my knitting out at a church function/activity someone will ask me "What are you working on NOW???" Like they're not surprised, since they already know it's ME, the knitting lady!!:knitting:
knitcindy

chixdilla
02-22-2012, 10:39 AM
I actually pulled out the baby blanket I'm working on when I was waiting for my car to get inspected a few days ago. There was a young guy sitting near me and the mechanics kept going back and forth, and no one said a word. Then a girl around my age walked in and sat next to me, so I expected her to maybe make a comment. Nothing. She just sat down and opened her homework (guessing she was in college). Then one of the mechanics walked by and asked about her homework! So a binder full of notes is more interesting than knitting now? :eyebrow2: Hmph!

offgridgirl
02-26-2012, 10:59 PM
I take my knitting with me everywhere and even to meetings....I knit and can listen to the speaker. Not a problem for most people....
They ask what I'm making and if they can get one made for them.....;)
I usually can knit and hold a conversation with no problem....

I only gotten one negative comment...."It's rude to knit in public!"
When I asked "why, she thought so?" She told me that it meant that I wasn't paying attention.(HUH????) That I couldn't pay attention and count stitches???

sampson001
02-28-2012, 03:54 AM
I was just reading about Olha's incident while knitting in public (What'cha Knittin' thread), and it got me wondering what other knitters have experienced.

So what comments have you encountered while knitting in public? Have they been mostly positive? Negative? Neutral?

I'd love to hear about some of them!

I usually knit when I am at the hairdresser and the hairdressers usually come up to me and ask what I am knitting. So let them know and I have only had positive feedback.

TEMA
02-28-2012, 09:39 PM
Just did my first knitting in public after many years. It was at the hospital waiting room where I knitted some socks while my husband was having a medical procedure done. I was there about 3 hours and the people came and went and no one seemed to notice me at all. Looking back, I'm thinking that's a good thing.
I was quite nervous... but what else could I do? It was either knit or die of boredom. :woohoo:
TEMA

Olha
03-01-2012, 10:05 PM
My recent KIP experience was in a lovely local cafe where they sell local/organic foods and there is a corner with toys and books for kids. Love this place.

Anyway, nobody said a word or stared even though I performed the following strange activities: joined a ball of yarn by felting ends together (using jasmine tea), shaped sock's toe on dpns, grafted it, ca-a-arefully checked that the socks match, weaved in ends, pulled out 2 more pairs of socks, put them on the table and took a picture, after which packed them in individual ziplocks, wrote notes and stick them in with the socks.

I also might have hummed something or sung quietly in my language... :)

I really wanted to make an obvious joke that nobody talks to crazy people -- that's why I had no comments --, but instead I want to say that it felt oh, so good to be able to do all that and nobody at that place minded one bit.

salmonmac
03-02-2012, 06:47 AM
Good going! If I see you on a DC bus or on the Metro, I'll say hi (and probably take out my knitting, too).

Antares
03-02-2012, 09:41 PM
Olha, You're a hoot! (I mean a good hoot!)

Sometimes it just depends on the location when doing strange (knitting or otherwise) things in public, I guess.

Just curious, what is your language?

Jan in CA
03-03-2012, 01:30 AM
Just curious, what is your language?

I was curious, too. Love your story and also Chris's story. :thumbsup:

Olha
03-03-2012, 11:35 AM
Ukrainian. That's what I was humming http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KC5az14mJCY

Not that you have to listen to live soft rock + traditional musical instrument in a different language, but isn't it neat that I can share? :) And if you do listen, imagine a much quieter, meditative version. He is singing 'I will fly, I will fly... after it'.

Lighting57
03-03-2012, 11:40 AM
I love the melody, but especially the instrument the woman is playing. It has such a rich interesting sound. Is it a type of harp?

GrumpyGramma
03-03-2012, 11:54 AM
Thanks for the link. I'm so glad you shared. I enjoyed listening. What is the instrument she's playing? Sometimes it has an almost otherworldy sound. It's beautiful.

Olha
03-03-2012, 02:02 PM
Well, thanks for asking :) It's not really a harp, cause it has a wooden body sort of like a guitar. It's called bandura (there is no translation), and it's our traditional original instrument. Because of the wide range (it has 55 strings) anything from Metallica to Lady Gaga can be played on it. It sounds sometimes like three guitars at the same time. Here is the proof

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z1U4qrAi--k&feature=related

I know it's a knitting forum but just can't pass the opportunity to share something really, really beautiful. The composition is by the Ukrainian composer. I met the performer here, in Canada.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SoUHT1MGOx0

ETA: if mods decide that it's too many irrelevant youtube videos, I would only ask to leave that last one.

Faren
03-04-2012, 07:59 AM
I rarely knit in public. Other than knitters who find my knitting method odd, I'm usually meet with indifference.

susieq29
03-04-2012, 08:49 PM
When I travel I usually knit on the airplane. One day I was knitting and one of the stewardess asked me if I could help them with something she was knitting. I said OK and spent about 2 hours teaching her how to fix her knitting and do the pattern she needed. She was very grateful we finished just as we landed.

crazykntter83
03-05-2012, 12:29 AM
My first knitting/crocheting in public experiences were in high school. People would ask me "What're you making now" a lot. Some people would want to try to knit some. And then they'd drop a stitch or something and I'd be annoyed because I didn't know how to fix it back then lol. After that my experiences have been pretty positive. Usually someone comments on how what I'm making is pretty, or I'll get some curious looks.

knitandbake
03-05-2012, 10:19 AM
I sometimes notice, if I'm knitting on a bus or train, the person next to me gazes over and watches for a few seconds - and I find myself doing the same thing when I end up next to a knitter :)