View Full Version : Why do you knit?

04-25-2005, 08:23 PM
I haven't posted in forever--haven't had the time to pick up needles in a while--but it suddenly hit me this week why I HAD to start knitting again. My life is so cyclical--as a teacher before, now as a student and as a "stay-at-home mom" (why am I never at home if that's my title???) and I feel like I never do anything that isn't undone within some period of time (usually 24 hours). Everything keeps starting over. I just have to do it all over again. Imagine frogging the same project every night for the rest of your life, and there you have housework. Frog a very large project every semester, and you have student life. I just had to do something I could see with a beginning, middle, and end, so I picked up some needles and yarn.

What about you guys (or, more correctly, you people...forgive my midwesternisms)? I'd love to hear what makes everyone stitch. What got you started? What keeps you going? Looking forward to your responses,


04-25-2005, 09:16 PM
Why not!
Been knitting for about 8 years. So totally enjoyable and addictive!
I started on line getting tips from knitters and a lot of help from knitting books.
I don't knit continentally, but I believe whatever floats our boats is fine.
I've been mostly knitting socks and crocheting beret style hats.
I did do a larger project a couple of years ago....a huge shawl from E. Zimmerman's knitter's almanac....love that little book!
The shawl took me a YEAR to finnish, so I went back to nice and speedy socks.
But I'm getting the jones to try something more elaborate, like a sleeveless pullover or this great knitted bra-top from the Urban Knitter Book.
Knitting books are great for getting ideas.
I'm also interested in broadening my color horizons by learning intarisia.
Some say you can't do it in the round and some say you can....I will investigate!



04-25-2005, 10:00 PM
I want to learn intasia, too!!! i just got this book, :study: 'great knitted gifts' that is all intarsia...I figured I'd teach myself, thus far I'm self taught...so I'll give it a go. u can go to crafterschoice.com & see the book..it's got really cool projects in it...lots of color!
I began to knit strictly for therapeutic reasons (I am disabled and suffer from a pain disorder). My :inlove: sweet, darling husband came home with learn to knit kit :present: for me last june & i've been going ever since!! I also knit to meet wonderful people like :XX: :XY: ya'll!! I've been here a very short time and have found an absolutely wonderful group of people :cheering: :cheering: :cheering: to u all!!
Have a knitty nite :zzz: and :waving:

04-25-2005, 10:33 PM
Caviar, I loved your reason for knitting. :cheering: It had never occurred to me before, but I think you have really hit on something there. Completion. I think that is why I am so obsessive about it too....I have to keep knitting until it is DONE. It is the tangible "doneness" that I'm proud of. Thanks for helping me see that.
:) kimmie

04-25-2005, 10:38 PM
Well, clearly "completion" is not my reasoning for knitting, as I have completed so little. :frog: I felt driven to learn to knit, and feel driven to learn to do it better. I do enjoy the actual process of it, and when I'm not frogging, I find the process to be a pleasant getaway. :D

04-25-2005, 10:41 PM
Ditto on the "doneness." Grad student, mama. Yeah I never finish anything. That same spot on the carpet keeps reappearing, the dishes keep breeding overnight, i keep writing the same paper over and over. Mummy never gets to have any fun. And it's not so much that knitting is fun (it is) but it's that something I have control over, something that I have confidence and a community that supports me. WIth that confidence I would like to teach others to knit. Homeless youth, women in prison or recently released from prison. Ya know vulnerable populations. SO they can feel that same sense of having at least one thing intheir lives that they can feel confident about and have control over.

04-25-2005, 10:48 PM
Oh yeah I also knit becasue I'm addicted. :XX:

04-26-2005, 12:00 AM
I guess I started knitted by chance. Last October (I remember because it was my birthday) I was in A.C. Moore getting things for my wedding and wandered into the yarn section just for a feel. I was to busy planning the wedding to start knitting then. Although now I know it would have cut down on my stress. :D So for Christmas my hubby got me a pair of size 10 needles and the softest yarn ever :heart: I've been going strong ever since. First with the help of my Gram and then from this site and the kind folks on it.

04-26-2005, 12:16 AM
Caviar, my daughter's preschool teacher said almost the EXACT same thing to me last week! That in parenting and taking care of a house, nothing is ever done. It just keeps going, whatever you finish is undone in a matter of minutes or days. But when you knit, you can actually finish something! And that feels so stinkin' good! :D

I'm really task oriented -- finishing things is so satisfying for me. But also, I learned to knit because I am a quitter, and I needed to work on that. I'm seeing a lot of myself in my daughter, and I wanted to set a good example for her, of trying something new, practicing it, and sticking with it even though it's really frustrating sometimes. :frog:

And, also? Knitting is like crack. I can't stop. :mrgreen:

04-26-2005, 07:27 AM
Sounds like yet ANOTHER T-Shirt...

Knitting is like crack.....
except without the annoying smokers' cough!

04-26-2005, 12:14 PM
I am glad to see that others think housework is a never ending story. I told my daughter. What is the point in making a bed that you are going to get back into in a few hours? (I do make it though) I totally agree about the control thing. With knitting I have something I can control and see actual results. Being a SAHM you don't have very many jobs that you can say "there, that's done forever". With knitting I can do that. I usually have I large project and several small projects going so I get something done about once a week. I give the projects to our community center, so it is very satisfying to see the bag grow each week and think "well, I accomplished something this week." Don't get me wrong, I would never not want to be a SAHM, but sometimes it does get a little repititious (sp??)

04-26-2005, 12:26 PM
I knit because it clears my mind. I like to concentrate on the repetitive motion of it.. I guess that would make it like meditation, without all the OHMs. :)

Also, I needed a creative outlet outside of work-related stuff. I write all of our development & fundraising materials, which I LOVE to do, but its alot of pressure & deadlines & so on. I wanted a FUN new creative hobby!

04-26-2005, 12:35 PM
It's so interesting to read all your posts on this subject. My sister is a SAHM and now that I'm knitting, she'd like to learn eventually too.

I'm not a mom, but I do stay-at-home right now. I had a back injury last fall which put me out of work for a little while. And then I quit smoking in January and knew I needed a hobby other than chatting. I didnt know jack about knitting but thought it sounded cool so I picked up a kit.

Knitting IS like meditation without the OHM's KK, loL!! That's one thing I really noticed the first few weeks I had stopped smoking. I could actually synch my breathing to the motion of the needles. SO very relaxing.

I've only finished a handful of things so far but I'm so glad I'm learning to knit. It is addicting!!!!!

04-26-2005, 12:44 PM
I've always been into needlework of all kinds (I find it to be very relaxing and fun), and I learned how to knit when I was a teenager. My most recent project was a counted cross stitch picture that took me about 5 years to finish. Then my DD decided she wanted to learn how to knit. Santa Claus got her a kit for Christmas, and while I was teaching her how to do it, I suddenly got the bug myself. I had to force myself to stay away from DD's project, or I would have finished her scarf.

I've found that knitting is a nice change from cross-stitch and much easier on my eyes...which for some reason aren't what they used to be :rollseyes:. It's also nice to know that I can actually make some useful items instead of just pictures to hang up. Many family members will be getting socks this year for Christmas :D

04-26-2005, 12:48 PM
I think I'm just weird. :D

I work in a mostly male sales environment in Chicago. My mother-in-law has been a SAHM and part-time teacher off and on in the country so we didn't have much in common. I saw how much she enjoyed her crafts so I thought we could bond over working on projects together. Knitting just seemed to fit because she could teach me the basics and I could use books for reference if I forgot anything. It's been so nice talking about our projects and our long "To Do" lists.

Now I knit because it makes me feel feminine and I like creating stuff. How silly does that sound? It's hard when you work in an office all day long and have nothing to show for it. I try to bring my knitting with me on the train for the commute and get my stuff done one project at a time.
What a wonderful feeling to make homemade gifts. I've been thinking about making a couple projects a year for people I don't know (chemo caps, & warm stuff for the homeless I see every day) especially after reading about the prayer shawls.

04-26-2005, 12:59 PM
One sentence will answer that question: It keeps me sane! :thumbsup:

04-26-2005, 01:04 PM
I think knitting to bond with your mil was a great idea. It isn't weird to want to do something to feel feminine after working with males all day. You have to do something to leach out all the testosterone your'e confronted with all day.

04-26-2005, 01:07 PM
I agree with the meditational part of knitting!
When I'm knitting I'm not thinking and I like that. Especially after studiying or reading boring uni-books.
Plus it keeps me from boredom and it's side-effects, like eating too much, smoking too much etc.
Actually I've lost some weight since I started knitting :cheering:, but I also changed my eating habbits and started having much more stress(university)

And I find it much easier then sewing, my second big hobby. I started sewing more than a year ago, but had MANY failures :crying:
Atleast with knitting you can save the yarn and start again, but you can't make a sewed too tight shirt wider!

04-26-2005, 01:46 PM
Sounds like yet ANOTHER T-Shirt...

Knitting is like crack.....
except without the annoying smokers' cough!

:roflhard: :rofling: :lol:

04-26-2005, 01:48 PM
I think I'm just weird. :D

Now I knit because it makes me feel feminine and I like creating stuff. How silly does that sound?

Aw now come on don't apologize for being womanly. be PROUD. Puff up yer chest and say I AM WOMAN HEAR ME ROAR!!!! :cheering: (either that or quit yer job and work at a place with more women :lol: )

04-26-2005, 02:32 PM
i am not sure that i do knit...i think i just collect really cool yarn! oh and needles

04-26-2005, 09:07 PM
What great replies! I see a common theme here.. addiction. :) Seriously, it's fun to see who are the Zen knitters, the pragmatic knitters, the Type A and Type B knitters. Kind of like a Myers Briggs test for knitting I guess. Thanks for sharing!!!


04-27-2005, 04:21 PM
I knit because I had always wanted to learn to knit and love it...I'm addicted...it's challenging and will keep my older brain intact ;) I began in November with the thought that I only wanted to learn how to knit scarves...it became an obsession because I also like to keep working until I'm finished and have a couple of other knitting projects going at the same time :XX:


04-27-2005, 08:35 PM
I, like others, knit for many reasons. The main one being, my grandma knitted many things during my childhood and I never realized what a truly amazing thing it was until the last five years or so, and unfortunately, she now has alzheimer's and bad arthritis in her hands and can no longer teach me. So, I finally decided to teach myself. Took a few class and I am off and, well, I would like to say running, but not quite.

I am also a SAHM, but I do work part-time and I also am one who never seems to finish anything.... this forces me to finish because I want to see what I have created. Also, I am not that crafty or artistic I should say, so at least I can feel a little bit crafty when making these wonderful things.

And of course, addiction. It seems like we are all hopelessly addicted to it, whatever our reason is for actually doing it. :inlove:

04-27-2005, 10:45 PM
What got you started?
i started when i was about 5. now i knit bc i like all my stuff to be unique. (why i also buy almsot all indie stuff)

What keeps you going
cool yarns. i love hanpaited and hand dyed stuff. and obvuiously obssesed with handspun also....gender bending....i ve taught a ton of guys to knit. and no not all of them were feminits and/or gay (most of my friends are...most of them also knit)
im also not quite the "typical" knitter....
Since im both a teen and knit small guage almsot exclusively (i <3 my size "0"'s!), also i tend to come off as rather *ahem* liberal (ok so thats an understatment) and have a soft soft for "nice fibers"

why i knit
1.) its cool.
2.) helps me focus. i only really knit during classes, and i find i cant pay attn unless i have *soemthing* to do with my hands.
3.) helps my wrists and fingers...nerve damage from caprel tunnel is really painful and knitting helps that, plus it keeps myhands moving so they arent as stiff and i dont get the shooting pain up my wrists...but only if im knitting small guage. knitting on large needles just agravates tendonitis and cp.

04-28-2005, 01:54 PM
I knit because I really love making new things. I like the planning involved as I am an obsessive planner and I love that I can sit in front of the television and veg out while I knit. I also love that it challenges me in ways I never would have imagined. Finally, I love that I can make myself things that I could never find in a store and they actually fit me in all the right places. I just wish yarn was a little cheaper.


04-29-2005, 09:21 AM
In my case, since I'm so new to knitting. Im starting for several reasons.

One, my wife really got into crochet and loves it. I tried doing that but wasnt exactly getting the hang of it. Se's really crafy and loves making stuff. I see knitting as a way of sharing her passion of yarn.

The second reason is related to the first. I have trouble sitting still not doing anything at all. I can read or be on a computer because there is interaction required (posts, chat, etc). But I have trouble sitting in front of a TV. My wife loves watching TV and movies and a lot of the time when she does it, she's crochets. I figured me learning knitting means i can sit on the couch with her more often.

Third, when we go to the various stores to look at yarn and patterns, I'v noticed that I really like the knitting stuff alot more than the crochet as a general rule, more cool clothes seem to be knit.

Fourth, I figure I can help make really cool gifts, for Christmas, etc.

Fifth, a lot of people find knitting to be very addictive and relaxing. I'm hoping it will be a good stress reliever.

That said -- It would seem this both better and worse than smoking.... it's better for your lungs but there's no patch use can use to quit.


04-29-2005, 11:23 AM
JOEL THAT IS SO SWEEEET! :inlove: You want to knit so you can sit with your wife on the couch. My DH likes to WATCH me knit....I like to think of knitting as something that brings people closer!

04-29-2005, 11:32 AM
That said -- It would seem this both better and worse than smoking.... it's better for your lungs but there's no patch use can use to quit.

LOL! Aint that the truth!!

05-02-2005, 05:40 AM
I knit because it is easier to do while watching tv than cross stitching (which I also love but doing often aggrivates my carpal tunnel).

I love the idea that I can make something and it be totally my work, and no one can claim any ownership. I like the uniqueness it allows in creating gifts for my loved one...my sons stay warmer in the winer because of their momma making then scarves. I love that I can knit on the airplane (TSA is allowing knitting needles again) for the whole sitting still issue again.

I love the way the yarn feels in my hand, wrapped around the two middle fingers of my right hand (tension control), the variety of textures, shapes sizes, and I really enjoy seeing the end of a skein of yarn, it gives me a completed feeling.

I am by nature, a very "crafty" person. I do gather insipiration from others often, but this one was all on my own. I was in ACMoore one day and picked up a crochet kit and a knitting kit and yarn. The crochet kit is still sitting....have not gotten the hang of that, but knitting came so naturally. I just started knitting this January, (after I tried to teach myself a year ago) and I intend to knit year round.

I also love the traditional values of knitting. So many of our great grandmothers, grandmothers, and mothers knit and it is something to pass along. I will be working in a domestic violence shelter this summer, and fully intend to teach all of the women who want to learn. And as I stated in a previous post, I want to teach my grand children how to knit (a VERY long time from now).

05-02-2005, 08:44 AM
I knit, because I LOVE the feeling I get for a completed project. Not many are knitting in my circle, there are 3 of us....all about the same level...altho I learned when I was little from my Nana, I didn't really touch it until about 2 years ago. I really took off this past winter. I remembered the mechanics of it all...but the technique and fluidness came recently.. I truly am not happy unless I have needles in my hand at some point during the day.

I even cut my hours at work WAY WAY back, so I could focus more on knitting, and hopefully make a few pennies at it too.

I like it is something that my CHILDREN like me doing. I have been crafting my whole life, but this is the first time they were actually interested in what I was doing!!! I have a list a mile long for things they want me to make for them!!

05-05-2005, 11:51 AM
Why do I knit?

Because it is so different from anything else I do.

I work at a computer all day (and sometimes at night/weekends). Like Dave, I am a programmer (including databases) and analyst. I'm active in 2-3 languages but know others I haven't used in years and got into programming both for the money and for the fact I could complete something. Additionally, as I have a hardware background as well, I sometimes fix computers for friends, or for pay. Third, as a parent of 2 young children, from the moment I hit the door until the kids are in bed (plus weekends), I am going non-stop, doing chores, watching the kids, etc, so that my wife can work on her school work and finish her degree.

My initial reason, when I started this just under 2 weeks ago, was to be able to share "working the yarn" with my wife (she crochets and is now learning knitting too). As I get more into it, I'm finding myself anxious to work with it because it's repetitive, its relaxing, it still lets me complete stuff, and my kids don't "attack" me when I pull out knitting. I can't pull out my keyboard (I play/compose music) while my kids are awake. They will instantly swamp me and want to play along with daddy (beat on the keys) while I'm attempting to play around their fingers. :lol: (I can't pull out my weight set for the same reason.)

Lastly, as I learn how to deal with tension, learn how to Purl, and combine these stitches into cool patterns, I can turn those completed projects into gifts. This is a practice my wife has been doing, with crochet, for more than a year that has saved us a lot of money.

:XY: :XX:

05-06-2005, 11:45 AM
I knit becuase I grew up watching my father knit and seeing some of the stuff that he could make.. I LOVED to sew, but had to sell my machines for money at the time I couldn't afford it..

Knitting doesn't really clear my mind or relax me.. actually most of the time it frustrates me.. so there ya go..

Mostly because of dad.


05-06-2005, 02:24 PM
This is a nice thread. I knit because it keeps my overactive mind calm. I find that when my hands are busy with knitting, my worries disappear. My mind is focused on figuring out the knitting, or relaxed into the rhythm of the stitches.

Also, I like that the work is "becoming" something. I like to see the knitting slowly turning into the finished object. A friend at work asked folks to knit squares for a women's club she is in, which would then knit them together as blankets for charity. As nice at that sounds, I could not knit the squares! :rollseyes: I was bored with them because I couldn't see them "becoming" something. Does that make sense?

05-06-2005, 04:14 PM
I knit because my "job" is creating graphic arts. I think knitting is the polar opposite, so it keeps me centered.

And I love buying yarn. If I didn't knit it up, DH would think I was insane.

(I am, but he doesn't know that yet. shhhhhh)

05-06-2005, 06:52 PM
I knit to relax. I love the colors and textures of the yarns. The complete process from choosing the yarn to finishing the project gives me such a feeling of accomplishment. I try to have two projects going - a large project and one that I can finish quickly - instant gratification :mrgreen: .

05-06-2005, 07:18 PM
This is indeed a nice thread. I started to knit mostly to keep a tradition alive, but also because I wanted a hobby that was easy to transport and allowed me to interact with other people while doing it. I had tried cross-stitch, but it can be a pain to travel around with all those threads, the scissors, etc.