I was at my mum and dad’s house the other weekend and my mum gave me a whole stash of vintage knitting patterns. She has quite bad arthritis and no longer knits, but she used to knit a lot when she was younger. It was lovely to watch her go through them, telling me which ones she had knitted for us (or our dolls and teddies!) I posted a picture of the patterns to my Facebook Page (Knitters in Glasgow, East Ren & Beyond); it really seemed to strike a chord with people on the page and it got me wondering why that was.
Part of me thinks it is because a lot of knitting (and crochet) patterns, especially for children, never really go out of style (ok, I draw the line at the knitted pants but the cardigan patterns are lovely). I am looking forward to trying out as many of them as I can, before the next bub comes along in December and crafting is put firmly on the back-burner. I really like the idea that my own daughter will wear some of the same cardigan designs as I did as a little girl.
More than that, though, I think there is something about knitting and crochet that connects generations. My mum never taught me to knit (although I wish she had and I fully intend to teach my own children if they’re interested) but she has really enjoyed helping me out when I have been stuck on a pattern or technique. She also taught me how to do a long-tail cast-on. I think she was quite proud that not only could she remember how to do it, but that she was able to, particularly with her hands the way they are now. She has been genuinely interested in learning new things from me too – arm knitting amongst others. Other crafters in my family include my aunt, who knitted both my christening shawl and my daughter’s (pictures below – same christening gown 30 years apart!). When I went to visit her to pick it up, it was really lovely to have something to discuss that we were both genuinely interested in. Not to mention the number of people, old and young, who chat to me when I am out and about with my knitting and crochet.
Ultimately though, I think there is something about crafting that is timeless and I think that is comforting, particularly in a world that is constantly moving forward at a pretty fast pace. On that note, I’m off to start knitting one of those cardies!