Knitting’s like Marmite

You either live it it hate it.

Wish it was as clear cut as that.

Knitting’s making fabric. Right? And then you have to sew it up – like dressmaking. But by hand.

But the results are tactile, to say nothing of warm and cosy. And everyone admires a piece of carefully crafted knitting that may seem to be totally impractical in real life.

Knitting can be challenging: searching for the perfect pattern or yarn; learning new, intricate stitches and techniques.

Then there’s the mindless must keep my hands busy while I watch tv kind of knitting. Quite therapeutic really and leaves you feeling very relaxed, happy and with a sense of unearned achievement.

Knitting is a social activity, bringing together people from each generation and all walks of life. One generation passes their knowledge and skills to the next. People generously share their patterns, needles and even yarns to get others knitting.

Remembering how you learnt to knit brings a happy feeling. With every piece you knit, you relive the warmth and kindness of the person who taught you to knit.

At knitting groups memories are recalled and shared. People bond quickly over this shared activity and it is easy to share personal stuff with such sympathetic and empathic people.

No wonder stitch and bitch groups are springing up all over the place. They are the twenty first century way of recreating those days when women gathered in cottages for a cup of tea, a good chat and an afternoon of crafting.

Knitting also brings its frustrations: tangled wool; obscure instructions; wool that doesn’t match and the tedium of repetition. Knitting gets laid down and taken up again.

Love it or hate it, whatever your view, knitting brings with it a sense of achievement and provides a means to a sense of wellbeing. Long may it continue.