I had the profound pleasure of talking to a group of 100 kids this week about knitting. I love these opportunities to talk about my craft because it forces me to simplify all the myriad of things I could say into a few easy bullet points. The two topics I covered in my talk were "how to become a knitter", and "why knitting matters". One was super practical, the other quite existential. Maybe not perfectly age appropriate, but who cares?!? It's good for kids to start thinking about some of the harder things.
In any case, I thought both topics deserved a bit of air time on the blog. So today I want to give you my thoughts on how someone becomes a knitter.
First, lets start with a definition. What is a knitter? In my opinion, a knitter is not simply one who knows how to execute a knit stitch, but someone who has a degree of confidence in the basic knitting techniques required to complete a project, and habitually uses those skills to create multiple projects over time.
So how do you get there? If we don't define a knitter as someone who knows the knit stitch, then clearly, you have to do more than learn to knit. Since we know that everything in life is a three step process, here's the three step process to becoming a knitter.
1) Learn to Knit: While this is not the definition of a knitter, you can't get there with out this obvious step!
2) Learn to Follow a Pattern: In order to set out to make a particular item, you have to have a pattern, and you can't use that pattern unless you know how to read it and follow it.
3) Learn to Finish a Project: Finishing is critical. Finishing is what allows you to step back from your work and say "I made that". The point at which someone finishes that first project is magical in transforming a person who can knit, into a knitter.
Obviously there's lots more I could say about each of these points, but then what would I talk about next week?