Once upon a time I was a great knitter and knitted all sorts of complicated patterns – aran, nordic, lace, fairisle and so on… some for me and some for the house – eg I was knitted a set of aran cushion covers, each cover was a different aran stitch; and of course, some for my children including jumpers with characters and even once a jazz inspired jumper for my au-pair. I then went onto to knitting with a machine, and had all the necessary extras – quite a collection in the end. I knitted for prizes for local charities even. then I got very busy with work and family life and the knitting machine went away in the spare room and then the loft. Then I got arthritis in my hands and I could no longer work a good tension. Then to cap it all my right thumb has been semi-detached from my hand – they had to cut a major tendon to stop it constantly contracting – and so my knitting suffered.
For many years after I was told that knitting was good physiotherapy for my hands I only knitted squares for blankets and even tried a simple circular crochet blanket effect. Then after the pain got too bad they injected steroids into my thumbs and lo and behold my knitting has improved! Such that I know knit all sorts for babies and charities. I confess my tension is still not all it could be and sometimes do to my fibro fog I make pattern mistakes but still I am doing better. So here are some examples of a) what I used to knit – a Kaffe Fasset cardigan I knitted in the 1980s and still have(!); and some things I have knitted more recently. The cardigan doesn’t look too bad for something that old that is still worn…
Now Kaffe Fasset was a very influential knitwear designer at that time and had lots of books out. Then things went quiet about him but recently I’ve started hearing more about his work again. He had a book out called Glorious Knitting in 1985 and this may have been where I got my pattern from. Anyway, you can look at his website on http://www.kaffefassett.com/Knitting.html to see some of his work and explore his ideas.
I find that I need to knit every day for at least an hour or I will wake up the next morning with pain in my fingers so… The only problem being where to buy cheap wool for these charity items. After all, as I give everything away that I knit, I can’t afford to buy expensive wools. I haunt charity shops for any cast-offs and markets for the cheapest.
If you have any suggestions of good places – especially on the Internet – where I can buy wool at around £1 per 100 grams, then please do let me know.
- A Combination of Two of my Favorite Things: Knitting and Diana Gabaldon (frommichigantomontana.com)
- Knits and Novels (moorepatchwork.typepad.com)
- Mindless Knitting (ask.metafilter.com)