Since having Peanut almost 18 months ago, it hasn’t been easy to find extra time for leisure activities. Between taking care of Peanut, working full-time and working with my husband to maintain a (semi) clean household, I am usually asleep before my head even hits the pillow.
I recently decided that I wanted to learn how to knit. I have great memories of my mother and grandmother knitting, making gifts and keepsakes for family and friends. I think that one day teaching Peanut how to knit would be a great experience and a chance to pass on a handiwork that I feel has become sort of a lost art.
My first project was a knit hat for winter and my second project that I *just* completed is a knit jumper for Peanut to wear tomorrow for Easter. Whew, just in the nick of time. Being able to make something that I know Peanut will wear and one day cherish is a very special feeling.
I am writing this post because I want to say that a) even spending 15 minutes a day with my new leisure activity has been an enjoyable and fulfilling process and that b) you can do it too! Here are a few tips to get you started…
*Check out your local craft/yarn store to get some basic information and equipment. The staff at these stores typically have a good knowledge base, especially for a beginner, and can point you in the right direction.
*Your local library will have some great books to get you started and might even subscribe to a knitting magazine. Who knows, you might find a fellow knitter checking out books too!
*I had great luck on YouTube finding videos of all kinds, showing the most simple, basic beginning steps for knitting (and how to fix the most simple, basic, beginner errors!) I really enjoyed videos posted by theknitwitch. I don’t know about you, but I am a very visual learner and by watching (and re-watching) small videos, I was able to learn some basic and essential knitting techniques, including casting on, knitting, purling and binding off.
*A co-worker also introduced me to a website called Ravelry.com, which includes patterns, tips, tricks and a live forum for questions. You can search for patterns based on experience level and save them in a queue, patterns are also rated similar to reviews on Yelp which I found very helpful. Ravelry.com also has information on crocheting, if that suits your fancy!
*Last but not least, ask around and seek out local knitters. Co-workers, friends, neighbors, family members, it is nice to have support and someone local/accessible who can guide you through the learning process.
*And really last but not least, when you finish your first, fifteenth or fortieth piece, make sure to iron on a label to remember your time and hard work. Peanut’s Easter jumper has a label that says “Handmade with love by Mommy” and it was!