Well, here I go…
A story of my journey with yarn. I never considered myself to be a creative person. Since university I have built up a close network of friends, all of whom seemed to have creative talents that were entirely beyond my reach. I have friends who are incredible singers and musicians, wonderful writers, impressive artists and adept at sewing or embroidery. I had none of these skills. It’s time to change that.
When I was a child I have piano and violin lessons which I just didn’t enjoy enough to practice. I briefly had singing lessons, but still find myself freezing when I realise someone can hear me singing.
I do like to sing around my flat, or even in a group when I know no one can hear me specifically. Put me in a situation when people can hear me and I go off key and then tail off entirely within seconds. So, I resigned myself to just being someone without any creative instincts and got on with my administrative work.
Writing for work
This is the first thing I have written in years that wasn’t in some way work related. Give me a report, business email or meeting minutes to write and I
am in my comfort zone. I even enjoy putting together sentences which I believe are clear and well-crafted – the limit of my creativity in the last few years.
A new beginning
When my sister-in-law announced she was pregnant I decided it would be a nice gift for the baby to present something I had made myself. To me the obvious choice was a baby blanket. I bought needles and yarn and with the help of a book and YouTube tutorials I set to work.
I didn’t, however, know enough about what type of yarn would be best for the task and my non-existent abilities. So I chose a yarn I thought would be pretty but didn’t consider how long it might take to knit with it.
Rookie error. It took me ages. The only way I managed to finish it was to come down with a virus which gave me a week off work. There was nothing to do but knit and watch tv. Along with the evenings and weekends I spent making extremely slow progress it was pretty frustrating.
The finished product
I did manage to finish it time for my niece’s first Christmas and produced a rather uneven finished product. I even made a mistake when switching between knit and purl rows that resulted in a raised row. Not feeling able to undo it without losing my way entirely, I repeated it occasionally to make it a ‘design feature’! Perhaps when I one day make her a better version I will post a comparison. For now, it only illustrates how much I have to learn.
Nevertheless, I had turn some balls of yarn into a blanket, and 18 months later she still has draped over her every week on days that my mother takes her for walks in her pushchair. Success! I (me!) had actually managed to create something from scratch. It was time to try something new.
I have memories of my grandmother showing me her knitting when I was young but had always seemed too complicated. I also remember being shown how to crochet at secondary school, so I had some understanding of how it worked. For a Christmas present I asked for a set of crochet hooks that I had seen reviews of, bought some yarn and started to play around. To start with just making long strings of chain stitches was quite calming. I found myself able to switch off from my work mode and give my brain a rest from worrying about emails and filing and invoices. Definitely a good sign.
So here I am, having now begun to teach myself crochet as well as knit, on my journey to becoming a creative person. No longer the odd one out, I now have my own hobby which I am hoping to develop and share as I make progress. Currently working on replacing some cushion covers that I inherited from a previous flatmate. No surprise she didn’t take them with her when she moved out. They were and remain a dirty cream and add no interest to my living room.
I hope you will follow along, pass on any tips, and let me join a community of crafters which I have missed out on for so many years. If nothing else, pretty yarn makes me happy and it’s nice to write and think about.
My other passion, travel, may occasionally rear its pretty little head, especially when the yarn travels with me. After all, what better way to document a trip than with photos of scenic landscapes and projects completed while away.
Wishing you happiness and yarn,