And this is why i knit (for other people)

Since I got to the UK and have been able to show off my skill with needles and hook to a whole new batch of friends, I’ve heard the following comment a lot…

“oooh, you could sell those”

or a variation on the theme…

“Have you ever thought about selling things?”

To which I sometimes smile and just say no, or sometimes explain i tried that and it was hard, or for my closer, more patient, actually want a response friends, I explain that actually, what people would pay versus the time and money I invest would make it a pointless exercise.

But the real reason is this.

I am a selfish knitter. I knit for pleasure, so I can take pride in showing off something I created with my own hands, so I can have something that is exactly how I want it (most of the time) and to pass hours that I would otherwise feel are wasted (or my excuse to watch television).

And because of this, when I do knit for other people, it is for one reason and one reason only. Because I care.

The wonderful Yarn Harlot posted today about the love that goes into a knitted present and how it stays with it. How wrapping oneself up in a handknitted gift really is like a woolly hug. And this is exactly how I think about knitting for other people. For both family and friends, and for new little people who don’t even realise that the thing that is keeping them warm is doing so in more ways than one. Even when I take requests, I accept them because I know that the finished object will not only be valued, but will be a reminder of my love and affection. (seriously, my most recent request I argued against receiving any kind of payment, but the recipient objected!)

I have only been in England a year, but I have made 3 gifts for people here and a few for little people back home. You’ve seen Kylie’s hat and I told you about John’s winter set and now here’s the third…

Fade Fingerless Gloves
or “Proper Thug Mitts” as Sam put it

After knitting Kylie’s hat, I offered to knit something for Sam for his christmas/birthday present (as the two events bookend the coldest part of the year). He asked for some mitts in purple and black and I immediately thought of this pattern* (as I have done it before for another male friend* of mine with great success)

It took me a while to find the right shade of purple in the right kind of yarn, but i finally did just after christmas and in less than a week I whipped up a pair of mitts for my dearest, dearest Sam.

I was worried they might be a bit snug, but he loves them!

And I love him.

See how this works?

 

 

*ravelry link

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a long time, no write… but plenty of craft!

So, I have been very quiet, spending much of my time volunteering at the Melbourne Writers’ Festival and working at the fabulous Wool Baa. mmm. I love my job!

I found out a few weeks ago that my friends are having a baby! This will the first bubs in my circle of friends and I’m very excited. I made my first pair of baby booties! I used Saartje‘s very famous free booty pattern, which is quick and adorable and knitted in Debbie Bliss baby cashmerino in a beautful teal colour – very gender neutral. the buttons are little red buttons that i fished out of my big grab bag of buttons. They took me a saturday evening of Gilmore Girls and Tea

I’m also planning on knitting Zoo from Rowan. I’m going to do it in bamboo in chocolate and cream with a pale purple elephant. ELEPHANT!!! i wonder if it’s appropriate to ask that the recipients of a baby top return said baby top when the child has grown out of it…

I managed another ‘saturday evening’ project this weekend, crocheting for myself Gem from Kim Hargreaves ‘Heartfelt’. I’d ordered some kidsilk night from the fabulous folks at cucumperpatch and it arrived on Friday, so I bought the kid classic to match up with it and off i went! Here is the result and I wore it all day today!

It’s VERY warm. The beads on the brim are just little pale purple seed beads. My friend said the kidsilk night made it sparkle like it had been rained  on or it was dewy, which is just the right amount of sparkle XD.

I’ve now also done Calm from this collection, in Jo Sharp’s mohair, but I’m yet to take good photos of it.

I must say that while I LOVE kim, i find i need to add more in the sleeves. I did this with calm and even then it still pulls up a bit short, so I’m tempted to knit some little ruffly cuffs in kid silk haze to wear underneath to add length – would also be useful under my cherish.

Speaking of which it is now Spring! which means it should be just right to wear Cherish soon – the problem with it is it’s too warm to wear inside, but it’s still too cold outside in Melb to wear the bolero without a coat – and the big wool is just too thick to wear a coat over! so it needs to be cool enough to wear outside, but warm enough to not need another layer – hello spring! I do love it though and want to wear it more!!

my current WIP is a jo nathan design from her Merino Deluxe DK book, though I’m working on it in Zara. mmmm Zara. photos to come… I’m also working on a beautiful baby alpaca scarf which I have a feeling i will wear CONSTANTLY when it’s finished!

Yesterday was the Melbourne Etsy sellers meet. I had a fantastic time and met some fabulous people, some of whom are on Rav, which is great, and all of whom I have favourited (or will when i dig out the business cards!) and genuinedly favourited too, I really do love everyone’s stuff. Made me feel a little inadequate and unoriginal really. I’m also now struggling with the copy cat bug! everyone’s ideas are so great it’s hard not to want to experiment with them! does anyone else have this problem? the only thing I’ve borrowed (?) – expanded upon (?) is kalliopi who makes fabulous button jewellery. I was making up a package for a raveller who loves buttons and i made some stitchmarkers with buttons instead of beads. I liked them so much I made a few sets. So inspired by, but not really a copy…

I am really excited about the next one and I must say I picked up a lot of business tips and ideas too, which is great.

Speaking of etsy there are now some ‘manly’ things on there, something I’m working on. There’s a gorgeous black and tan scarf and a reversable rib beanie. I’m also trying to make a bit of a niche for myself with knitted flower accessories, like hair clips and brooches.

I’ve been getting a lot done, but I still feel like there are things I need to finish – primarily because i either have everything i need, or i’ve actually started them. Mainly this is sewn items – including the dress I’ve actually cut out and need to put together. I cut it out in May… lol.

Anyway I will leave you with two things. The first are some little felted birdies that need a purpose… ideas are welcome. The second is a link to the most hilariously awesome thing i have ever seen on etsy made by fellow melbournian jellibat.

the best soft toy ever made...