Why do you knit?

Why do you knit?

Forgive me for the existential question here but, why do you knit? 

Woman's hands knitting

What was the story behind you taking up knitting and sticking with it? 

We learn to knit in different ways, at different times and with different teachers. Some of our teachers are relatives, friends or people from our community. Some of them are youtubers, books and workshop tutors. Sometimes, we are the teachers ourselves.

We learn for different reasons too. Why did you learn and why did you stick with it? I learned because I wanted to take up knitting as a hobby. It was completely self directed. 

Learning to knit is one thing but do you know why you stick with it? Why do you keep picking up the needles and working with them? 

There are common reasons here. Is yours one of them? 

  • Knitting is a way of managing stress. 
  • Knitting is addictive. 
  • Knitting is creative. 
  • Knitting keeps boredom at bay. 
  • Knitting boosts numeracy and literacy skills. 
  • Knitting boosts resourcefulness. 
  • Knitting is a way of 'doing' something to help.  

There are plenty of other reasons why you might knit but these are a good starting point. 

Why did I learn to knit and why do I still do it? 

It's part of my job. No, seriously, it might be part of my job but I taught myself as a way of managing stress as a trainee teacher. Marking books and planning lessons does pass the time but it isn't for you and it is work, not play. 

It was challenging and there were plenty of things I didn't understand or got wrong. I enjoyed trying though and I was occupied for a few hours a week with something that completely won my attention. I wanted my knitting to be functional at first. If I could make a hat for someone I would be happy. I started small. 

The rewards that came with learning to knit grew and grew. As I practised, I gained. My experience of becoming comfortable and confident was very rewarding. I started being able to knit in front of the TV! I could make cute things for myself or for others and my non knitting friends, family and colleagues would be really complimentary. 

Along with so many other skills, knitting gets better. You get better. 

I stuck with knitting because it made me feel good. It brought me joy. It still brings me joy when I make something and I don't even have to finish it. People often wonder if I no longer feel the same way about knitting because I do it for a living now rather than as a hobby but I can put my hand on my heart and say I still love it. The passion is still there. 

I hope I'll be knitting for many more years to come. Even in the depths of depression, I was still clicking away. I think I'm definitely in the 'addicted' camp as I can't go a day without knitting at least a row. 

I'll be honest, sometimes when I am working on a new design, I do think to myself "I'm so rubbish at this", especially when the tech editor comes back with edits! I still do it though. It still gives me more than I ask of it. 

Pile of knitted items.


Further Reading 

Simple tips for a beginner knitter  

Things I wish I'd known as a beginner knitter

5 Awesome crochet and knit pumpkins for autumn 

Can a beginner knit socks?

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1 comment

I love the fact that knitting is so accessible and there is a comparatively low barrier to entry, unlike a lot of other hand crafts. Most people can pick up needles and yarn and make something functional and warm. I’d love to see it more widely adopted in schools in the way it is in some other countries.

Louise Tilbrook

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