One Thing

There are a lot of things I love about knitting. The list is long and complicated and you all know most of them, or you wouldn’t knit the way you do- which I’m assuming is rather a lot. I suppose I hope it’s rather a lot, so I’m not so odd.  I’ve been making a list of ways that I love knitting, ways that it keeps my life straight and gives me gifts that I’m grateful for.

Today I can tell you that my life is full of unfinished things.  My latest book? Unfinished. The laundry? Unfinished. My kids? Unfinished. (Can you finish that one? Does it ever happen?) The house? Unfinished. There’s a piece of quarter-round missing at the bottom of the stairs. It’s been five years. I don’t see it getting finished any time soon. The painting? I ran out of paint part way through the dining room. It’s unfinished. (I’m trying to convince myself I like it that way.)

The housework, my fundraising goals, my fitness level, eating only whole foods… Unfinished.  I’m working on all of it, but there’s no way I’ll ever be a finished person, or have a life that needs no work.

Waving Lace socks from Favorite Socks .  Yarn: lost the label a long time ago.

That said, these socks? FINISHED. Completely DONE. They are something I started and ended and they are whole, and they don’t need anything more from me. That’s one thing I love about knitting.You can be finished.  Socks, anyway.
What do you love about it?

216 thoughts on “One Thing

  1. I love watching a two dimensional string become three dimensional… Color turning into usefulness… The feel of the yarn in my hand…. It’s a welcome break time from my own unfinished life, a time to regather and reflect. If I turn into sparkley dust one day, it won’t matter what isn’t done, because I’ll be done. In the mean time, I’m following Mary Poppins and striving toward practically perfect in my imperfection.

  2. I love that once I’m knitting the thought of all those unfinished things fades and it’s only me and the knitting.

  3. I love taking yarn and making something that is going to keep someone warm or know that they are loved or let someone know from another far off country that someone is thinking of them after a disaster. I love the rhythm of knitting (except when it is lace and I have to concentrate) and I love the sense of accomplishment. There is much to love.

  4. Sadly, the promise of finished knitted things often distracts you from the unfinished things, making them… unfinished.
    Does the word finished look weird to you now, or is it just me?

  5. I love that my children yearns for my socks. I think it’s the one thing that I do that they appreciate now that they are older than me. (wink)
    I love that I feel like I’ve created something even though I’m following someone else’s pattern (mostly).
    I love looking through the yarn stores and spying something that makes my heart sing and my eyes dance.
    I could go on but I’d bore you silly. I’m a senior who never wants things to be finished (except my knitting, of course).

  6. You are right once again! We all have unfinished lives. I think that is something I find so annoying about life in general, is how its always unfinished. It doesn’t matter how many things you knock off the TO DO list there are 20 new things always being added to the bottom of that list. That is the beautiful thing about knitting is it can be finished. I love how knitting can calm my mind and yet still give me some thing productive to do. Plus I love making pretty things!

  7. I will admit that my life has been full of unfinished *everythings* to a point where it is really getting in the way of my (1) doing the things I want to do and doing them well, and (2) enjoying my life.
    So I’m doing the sensible, adult thing and asking for some help. I have an appointment with a psychologist in a couple of weeks to help me figure it out.

  8. I love that my 32 year old son (now you can guess that I am pretty old) told a sales person who wanted to sell him socks, that he only wears the ones his mother knits for him and they have to be navy blue. Not the most inspiring knitting!

  9. There are so many ways that I love knitting and so many things to love about it, that it is hard to know where to start to describe some of them. Mostly I think that I love it because it reflects and influences so much of my life. When I was young, raw, impatient – my knitting sucked, except for sometimes when I really wanted it to be great and paid attention to it. In my early adulthood and middle years, I was raising kids and it helped me keep them clothed, warm and stylish. Sometimes it helped me do that for others I cared for, and sometimes it earned me money that was badly needed to supplement the family income. Now I’m approaching retirement I love that it is what I do most, and best – knitting and spinning, spinning and knitting. I love that it is a big part of how I earn my living in semi-retirement (along with writing) and I love that I am better at it now that it matters how it turns out, I love that I think over problems and seemingly get smarter in my sleep when it comes to knitting and spinning. I love that I am not afraid to tackle projects that would have terrified me 30 years ago, and I love that I can do things in knitting and spinning that I never would have believed possible. I love the creativity, the challenge, and the way it connects me to all the lives that went before, my mom, my aunties, my gran, my great-gran – all knitting socks and scarves and mittens and pullovers like crazy women for the husbands and kids they adored. Hard not to love something that can accomplish all that!

  10. Knitting Retreats and Knitting Shows and Knitting Blogs and Knitting Friends!
    My calendar now allows my friends and I to plan for the upcoming Frolic and I am VERY EXCITED ABOUT THAT!!
    Those are beautiful socks that you finished. 🙂

  11. I’m a process knitter – I love everything about the process and am usually a little sad when a project completes. I like watching how the fabric forms – often in unusual ways from the yarn / pattern. When I am knitting – usually for my husband or son or family – I think about my loved one and it is like praying for them. Knitting calms me and helps me think – my hands move in time, my mind slows and I’m able to think. And laundry, house remodeling and everything undone is OK

  12. The magic! It begins as string and ends as a garment…each and every time, I am amazed. It never gets old.

  13. But how weird would it feel if everything was finished? Everything I do, everything I’m interested in, is like a strand in my “life’s rich tapestry” (smile), and if all the strands ended at once then I’d be lost – detached. I need a few of the strands carrying on, to keep me going.

  14. I live a life full of caring for others—my DH has had Parkinsons Disease for 23 years, and needs a lot of instant care and help. The laundry, cleaning, meal preparation, are never “completed for good”, and so it is so full of instant gratification to knit a pair of socks or a scarf, and look at completed objects. Even seeing that the 8 rows I got in tonight are still with me (unless I dropped a stitch, and have to tink back!)keeps me saner and more patient and gracious about the rest of my life. I tell myself that life just keeps changing–maybe, in a few years, I’ll be tackling more ambitious and complex projects, but for now, this is a doable choice. And my husband’s size 13-shoe, wide feet are enclosed in friendly socks that are easy to put on him, compared with commercial ones. There’s a lot I can’t influence or control, but this is a tangible one!

  15. I started knitting again after many years away from it.I love the feeling of creating things with my hands . After many scarves , a few hats, an afgan, a pillow cover and dishcloths , I am ready to make a sweater for myself. Everything else has been for other people. I read some of your books and I love your blog. I check it everyday and have been reading the old blogs too.Thank you for the blog and your great pictures and inspiration.

  16. But if you finished *everything* what would be the point of getting up in the morning? I suppose if everything else was finished you could just knit for evermore, but wouldn’t the lack of anticipation reduce the amount of fun? Also, if everything else was done, surely that would mean you’d just wasted years of knitting-time…

  17. I love that knitting frees me from the tyranny of commercialism. Socks? Sweaters? Hats? You name it, I can make it myself and unhook from the big-box stores and their soulless products. It gives me a sense of self-reliance and independence…and let’s not even get into the spinning. If I had a sheep in the backyard I wouldn’t need to go into a store EVER. (Still working on that one.)

  18. I love knitting for all of the above reasons, and finished is definitely a big part of that.
    However, I don’t think I would ever want to be finished as a person. That would be boring.

  19. I like the process of making things, although certain stages of things like socks are more interesting than other parts. I think the heel flap (learned from your book!) is the most fun. Oh, and turning the heel. That’s amazing. I do like finishing things, and sitting back and admiring the finished product. It’s weird; I want the thing I’m making to be finished, but then I’m sad that I have nothing to knit. So I go and find some more yarn and cast on for my next project, which also makes me very happy. There’s something special about the beginning of the knitting, when there’s just a few rows on the needles.

  20. Just finished a pair of socks today as well. The elusive glow of actual accomplishment? Ooo yes — love that part of knitting. And I love the fact that, when I’m in a sloggingly hard day, I need go no further than my own hand knit socks for a reminder that just doing the one next thing … and then the next … and then the next … does, at times, get things done. Plus the socks are wickedly cute.

  21. I like that I don’t have to show anyone a proof of my knitting, I don’t have to have anyone edit it, I don’t have to meet anyone’s expectations but my own (and that can suck sometimes), I like that I do it on my own timeline. It is mine, all mine. I own it, I can do as I please. I like the start of something, I like the finishing. I like the feel and the smell. I like the dreaming and planning. And I like reading the Yarn Harlot – including the comments where all my knitting soulmates reside.

  22. I love how knitting connects me to my ancestors. My mom taught me to knit when I was 8 and couldn’t understand the directions in my Girl Scout magazine. She helped me knit my 1st (and last) “boyfriend” sweater when I was in high school. I abandoned knitting for a long while, but when I took it up again it all came back, including the connection to Mom. At 88 she knits only dishcloths now, but all my cousins beg for them.
    I also love how knitting is, to my friends, a “sign” of my caring about them and their progeny. My baby sweaters are sought-after. My friends ask if their child or grandchild will get a hand knit sweater from me?
    (If you’re special, but not THAT special, you get baby socks and/or hat.) 🙂

  23. I love that knitting keeps track of time, that I can look back on a project and see the rounds where I was on the bus, where I was waiting for class to start, etc.

  24. I love the way I feel on a cold winter’s night with my mugga and my knitting.
    I adore knitting outside in spring and summer, knowing when the temperatures drop, we’ll be warm.
    Fall brings a sense of excitement as I knit my way from harvest festival to harvest festival.
    Knitting turns my seasons into gratifying stitches.

  25. I love that it goes at my speed. If I don’t feel like knitting on a particular project for a while, I just don’t. It will still be waiting for me when I come back to it. I love that each piece is a unique experience and gets associated with particular memories, sounds, smells, events, etc. That each time I wear a particular piece, I will create a new memory associated with that piece.
    I also love seeing a beautiful yarn that I chose become something useful, loved and used.

  26. Focus. It gives me focus, and that focus brings me peace. The concentration I need to knit lace makes all the noise from the rest of my life fade into the background for a time — and, as long as it’s just me and the kitting,there is peace.

  27. I love that a project is my own project. I don’t need to ask anyone’s permission or get anyone’s opinion. If I make a mistake, I don’t need to confess it to anyone or make a list of ways that I can fix it and ask my boss which one she would prefer. It’s a small part of my life where I can make all my own decisions.

  28. I love that I am MAKING something whilst being sedentary. Just reading (or watching the tube) is not enough. I like that I can do two things at the same time. I like that something gets finished unlike most things in life, but if it’s not finished? So what! I like that new ideas get me up in the morning. The thing I like the very best is that if something goes wrong with knitting, you can go backwards, do it again and make it come out right – again, unlike the rest of life.

  29. Comment before reading the earlier comments – Took the link for the sock pattern to Ravelry and REALLY!!! On Earth Day USA (?worldwide??) the paper copy is $15.91 at Amazon and the digital copy is $17.95 at Interweave. What am I missing???

  30. Hey, I have those socks; they were one of the first projects I ever posted to Ravelry! What do I love about knitting? I love that I can have sweaters that fit my 5’1″ frame, sweaters that no one else has because I can make them however I want.
    P.S. That Interweave Favourite Socks book is one of the best. I’m going to take one of Ann Budd’s classes next weekend at the Frolic. Can’t wait.

  31. I love the potential of knitting. I love to buy yarn, and patterns, then create kits for myself. Then, since I am a slow knitter, a few months later I redo the kits, then redo them again. One skein of yarn could be any finished item, and any pattern could be made of so many yarns, that the perfect combination just depends on one’s mood. The endless possibilities are what I love.

  32. I think I stole this from EZ: I can have something to show for wasting an entire Sunday because I was knitting at the same time.

  33. I enjoy the fact that my knitting has never once complained that there’s “nothing to eat in this house” or that there’s “nothing fun to do.” Making socks that fit and really keep my feet comfy and warm is just a bonus….

  34. Knitting: How do I love thee, let me count the ways. Oh, I can’t count that high. Too many zeros. I love everything about knitting, even the tinking and frogging for the promise of future success they bring. And I love knitting for how it calms my rage at things that don’t make sense (see comment above at 3:36). And no, I don’t have my knitting with me today which is why I went off!!!!!

  35. Finished! Exactly! It’s so darn satisfying to take a finished object, and give it to its recipient and say “Here – I made this! For you! All by myself.” THis is the exact reason that periodically I’ve got to throw some dish clothes into the mix – and also the reason that I don’t take on “assisted living” projects (those that will take me so long that by the time I finish them, I’ll be in assisted living.)
    I also love that I can knit and listen, knit and talk, knit and watch – all things that I cannot read and do. THis make knitting much more husband and parenting friendly than reading. For a fidgety person, it’s a godsend.
    I love that if you have a short attention span, you can still knit. As my friend Nikki once said, “You only need an attention span as long as one row.” And over time, even that expectation has been revised – you can stop in the middle of a row – the Yarn Harlot said so!
    Finally, I just love the tactile nature of it. It fulfills a sense that is almost entirely unused in my computer heavy, sit at desk, job.

  36. I love the colors, I love creating, I love the fact it gives me something to do, I love the attention it gives me and from people telling me how smart I am, I love the designs, I love it can help me keep my attention in school especially with boring books and discussions.
    I also love seeing peoples faces when I given them something that I made 🙂
    ps to Friday’s Mom, last year Earth Day was celebrated in 198 countries.

  37. Steph! A) Love the socks – in their finished form – they are GLORIOUS.
    B) I love knitting for the relief it provides from the reality of everything else
    C) Have a wonderful last full week of April – wishing SPRING your way asap!!!

  38. What do I love? Knowing that every knitter I meet (almost; let’s be honest here) is sort of pre-screened as a potential friend.
    And also — did you notice? were you expecting? — I have not said a single word about the unfinished-ness of the gansey.

  39. And even if you finish painting, then the smoke detector dies and you have to get a new one, but it doesn’t cover up the unpainted spot from the old one. Maybe that’s one of the many reasons knitting is so satisfying. You can really finish it.

  40. I love your blog and your books about knitting. I love the meditative tranquility of (some) knitting. And the sense of accomplishment when I finish a project. I had my knitting with me when I ended up in a Boston hospital emergency room on marathon day (son hurt in race, not in bombing). The knitting gave me something to do while waiting to get reunited with my son. It was an awful, awful day.

  41. Cheer up about the missing quarter round. In 1946, my mother started to renovate her house. She removed a door knob from the door from the hall to the dining room, a door that was usually left open. If we did close the door, we slipped our pinky into the hole, crooked it and pulled. About 2005, my sister took over the house and updated–still no door knob.

  42. I love that knitting needles and yarn become beautiful things, sometimes practical things, and that they last for more than 10 minutes. Whether I am the one who knits them or someone else does, the work of someones hands and the love that is shown by that, is of immeasureable beauty.

  43. I doubt that I could describe in any articulate way what I love about knitting, I just know that it’s pure enjoyment (mostly) to sit and create with two sticks and some string.

  44. I love the colors, textures, feel of the yarn, the anticipation and the eventual completion of a project (after making my way through the dreaded black hole). I am always surprised that I am able to take string and turn it into something beautiful and useful. Just like seeing my perenials come up each spring…I am always amazed at how my knitting turns out.

  45. I like watching string become something in my hands. I hold it up as it appears and smile at it and give it a supportive little pat while continuing to smile with satisfaction.

  46. I love that I create something useful during a time that I otherwise see as unproductive time. Most of my knitting time is when I am commuting to work or when I am watching tv.

  47. As a busy, married mom of 4 I love that knitting is for me. It’s the me time that doesn’t feel too selfish. Gives me a way I can be creative when I want to be. The one thing in my life that, except for gift knitting, doesn’t have to be done, has no deadlines, can be obsessed about or put off until tomorrow, can be taken with me to school events. Might be in my purse at work. I love making gifts even though it might not be the most efficient or cost effective way of giving. I love that with knitting it can be as simple or as difficult as I want it to be. And I love that I will never stop learning with this hobby and will always have it with me.

  48. I love that while I knit I steep the garment in my intentions for the receiver. I’m not just knitting a sock, I’m knitting up my love in the tangible comfort of warm wooly socks. I’m knitting up the kindness of an arm around shoulders in a sweater. And even if I’m knitting for me, I’m still knitting in the good stuff. I’m also knitting up place—the warmth of a fire, the smell of the woods, the sun on a warm spring day. These are potent little treasures that I’m knitting up, full of the Larkie goodness and sent out into the world.

  49. I love that I can get a ‘do-over’ with minimal effort when something has gone wrong with the knitting. And that no-one will ever know the difference. Unless the yarn gives up after being frogged, which I admit has happened, but I didn’t like that yarn too much anyway;)

  50. Stephanie, right on as usual.
    Chris at 3:10: good for you! go for it! and cheers on your journey.

  51. I love the knitters. I love the young ones making felted dreadlocks to clip into their hair. I love the young moms making baby hats and toddler toys. I love the aunties and grannies making sweaters and mittens for playing out in winter. I love the dads making hats for their kids to go sledding and scarves for the homeless shelter. I love all of them for taking the time to make a preemie hat or a chemo cap or an angel pocket or a square for a blanket for someone going through or coming out of a challenging time. I love knitters.

  52. Meditative, Beautiful, Productive, Creative, Clever, Warming, shows Love, Colour-fun, Tactile, Challenging, Tantalising, Cerebral, Me-Involving, Inspiring.
    Finished – not often. Especially for the amount of time and products I start to knit.
    Really, I only produce swatches, oh and buy lots of yarn potential. It’s all good.

  53. I love that my own personal #1 most important holiday doesn’t coincide with anyone else’s in my family. That’s the MD sheep & wool festival, which is close enough that I’ll make a 3-day weekend of it. I don’t need anything, so I’m spending the time volunteering and just walking among my/our people.

  54. I love that no matter what else is going on in my life, or how much stuff is beyond my control, I am still the boss of my knitting.
    Really.
    Really.
    Well… mostly.

  55. I forgot to say, gorgeous socks. Love the color. I finished a sweater today, okay, it’s a shrug knitted with super bulky, hawser-size yarn that would also be good for tying up your tugboat, but it’s a finished sweater. Well, except for a button but that’s minor. I’m claiming it and putting it into the finished category.

  56. Knitting? I love that nearly anything is possible, given enough patience and a good yarn shop with smart people. I love that I can make my love visible. I love that knitting goes back to my mom and grandma and great grandmother. I love that my niece knitted me a scarf two Christmases ago and the love is coming back.

  57. The finished thing with knitting does it for me. 🙂 We’ve been in this house almost 40 years and it’s STILL not finished……

  58. I love hearing people talk about not being finished with things, like the upstairs bathroom, and that they would rather knit and do other creative things than finish some of those household tasks. When I hear things like that, I don’t feel so odd.
    That said, I love knitting because I can make things for myself or others, I can knit alone or with others, and in the end, at some point, I will finish the projects that I start.

  59. The “finished” thing is huge with me. I was out of work for two years and my knitting saved me from serious, deep depression. The sense of accomplishment–no matter how large or small truly saved me. And without sounding too sentimental or stalkery, you and your blog played a big part in my sanity during that time in my life. I learned about knit nights from you and found an amazing group of my own. I learned about Ravelry from you which has gotten my knitting organized (and when you’re out of work for a long time, it is a good thing to have a well organized and accessible stash). I learned about Rhinebeck from you. I learned about the Rockin’ Sock Club from you. When I felt most alone and lost–I found out that there were actually communities out there that I could embrace that had nothing to do with my job. And I thank you for that. They all have changed my life in the most amazing way that I had never imagined. (P.S. I really feel like this sounds way too sentimental and stalkery but it needed to be said. Maybe I should also add to my last that I have learned to accept the kindness of strangers.)

  60. Like Judy, I love the feeling of family continuity I get from knitting. I’m a continental knitter because my grandmother learned from her German sisters-in-law, and that’s how she taught my mom, and how my mom taught me.
    And I love that I can fidget constructively, that time spent as a passenger in the car or waiting for food in a restaurant or for an appointment can be an enjoyable interlude of peaceful creation rather than an irritating unproductive period of impatience before the next interesting thing happens.

  61. I’m right there with you on the finished thing. I’m also a mother, and my other job is librarian; talk about a job that’s never finished!

  62. How do I love knitting? Let me count the ways:
    1.) I love that I can go almost anywhere, pull out my knitting, and meet people. I get to hear a little about why knitting or crochet means enough to them to approach a stranger and strike up a conversation.
    2.) I love the possibilities that each length of yarn contains…sweaters, socks, toys, etc.
    3.) I love the travel opportunities to attend knitting shows, retreats, find new shops, etc.
    4.) I love that you can any group of knitters to any shop or show, turn them loose…and chances are, no two will be enamored with the same yarn, patterns, needles, etc.
    5.) I love its portability…and its completeness. If you choose your pattern carefully, and weave in ends as you go, you can cast off the last stitch, weave in that one lone end…and you are FINISHED!

  63. Knitting is something that, on the whole, will never be finished. But always makes you feel complete. I. Love. Knitting.

  64. I love that knitting has given me a skill set for solving problems. Knitting is why I was able to go back to school and sort out all the paperwork involved – I’ve worked with trickier knitting patterns than that. Knitting is why I can look at a part and envision a whole – I deconstruct the way garments are made all the time. Knitting is clear evidence that trying over and over again yields results, as long as the materials hold out. Knitting gave me my first job – no really, I worked in a yarn store out of high school – where I learned how to talk to strangers calmly, even when they screamed at me. Knitting is even the thing that has taught me how to mend and care for garments that have been discarded by people who didn’t know a little snag or hole could be taken care of with 20 minutes, a needle, and yarn. I have whole swathes of my wardrobe, not made by me, because of knitting. I suppose the thing I love most about knitting is that even when I don’t knit, my brain does. When you internalize it, you think like a knitter forever.

  65. I love that it occupies that portion of my brain that gets into serious trouble if left without something to do. I am also kind of a process knitter so I really like the sweaters too.

  66. In my job, my day’s efforts are invisible as soon as I’ve turned off my computer monitor, but with knitting, my effort tangibly grows into something touchable and real. I love that about it.

  67. Anticipating, as I knit, how much someone’s face is going to light up (even if I don’t get to see it!) when they see what I have taken the time and created for them simply to make them happy.

  68. Far less lofty and wonderful than all the reasons listed above (but still important!) is that when I sit down and I’m knitting, some people are less likely to interrupt me to do something for them. In other words, it keeps me looking busy and productive although it feels like a wild and lovely escape!

  69. I love seeing my loved ones wearing what I’ve made, I love wearing what I’ve made, I love watching it take shape as I make it & being able to redo my mistakes, my many, many mistakes…

  70. I don’t knit, but do know those socks are the bomb. Seriously, I would not put those on my feet – I would fold them, and put on my living room credenza as a piece of art.

  71. Why do I knit? In May of this year I shall have survived 56 years on planet earth. I do a lot of things I hate. My going to work for one…at a job that is pedantic, boring, nasty at times and just plain dead. It invites NO creativity, pleasures, love or adventure.
    The political, social and economic mess that is the USA right now is the same as my work. There is no reason for me to get up in the mornings that makes me at all truly happy…except!!!!
    MY YARN STASH, my loom, and my Kromski polonaise!!!! Without these tools..I would just stay in bed and never leave.
    I knit because it is excercise for my bored mind. I spin so that my eyes remember what really good colors look like. I weave so that I can make fabric I like and not have to accept what others say I must.
    It is all survival for me. And that is a fact!

  72. I absolutely love the aspect of being finished with a project. There isn’t much that is more satisfying. On the other hand though, I love the infinite possibilities of beginnings in knitting. There is always something new to work on or aspire to; I see no end in knitting in this regard. That is very comforting to me, to know that knitting will never be finished.
    *rushed off to finish the latest socks*

  73. That there’s always something more I can learn, some new way to do things. A neverending number of combinations of things I can do. It is always fascinating.

  74. I love the calm that comes over me when I knit and I love it when I find another knitter and the special way their faces light up when they talk about knitting or a project.

  75. My youngest son is ADHD. He was out of meds today, and spent the day “fidgeting” with a golf ball so he wouldn’t be disruptive in school. I told him “That’s why I used to smoke. And why I knit now. Because I can’t sit with my hands still.”
    He’s thinking about learning. He certainly doesn’t think smoking is a good idea. (whew!)

  76. I simply love “YOU”. I have been knitting for, (cough)probably(cough), as long as you have been alive. I equate knitting with warmth, love, coziness, peacefulness…. and you remind me of all those things when you post on your blog, when you write a book…Knitting is important in your life, it is important in my life and you do not let us forget that…thank you! And, as I write, I have a basket next to me with 3 unfinished pairs of mittens, one baby sweater in progress, and many FINISHED projects waiting for Christmas or birthdays…
    I love you yarn harlot,
    Maria

  77. I love taking something raw and making a finished object out of it. I love the creativity of the entire process – taking things that I like – yarn, needles and pattern – and putting them together in a way that is uniquely mine. It is also a productive process so there is tangible, useful output. I love to read, but it doesn’t get any Christmas presents taken care of. I love that I can do something that I enjoy that makes other people happy and saves my family money (think gifts here). I also love that it is portable. I do not tolerate boredom well so, between my Kindle and my knitting, I can always be self entertaining. I love that knitting is soothing and lastly, like you, I love that I can actually complete something.

  78. I have been an ICU nurse for 15 years, ever since I was 18 years old. I have never had a job where you could ever not be functioning at 100% on the job without it ending in disaster. But with knitting, I can completely screw up in the worst possible ways and no one DIES. It is FABULOUS! I also have a history of a fairly severe eating disorder and anorexia is all about control. With knitting, sticks and string let me exercise my control tendencies to my heart’s content.
    But all the therapeutic uses aside, I love knitting because it lets me show caring and attention and love in the most physical and literal sense of the word…the people I care about are never cold and hopefully feel a little less alone because of it.

  79. I love sliding my feet into a pair of handknit socks–they may look a little odd/scrunched, but then the pattern unfolds into a lovely lace or rib pattern as it stretches on my foot and leg. And it’s made to fit ME, and no one else in the world has a pair of socks exactly like mine! And mittens with fun stuff on them! Knitting and drinking wine with my friends every week! I guess I could go on and on…

  80. I love to knit.
    I love the feeling of yarn sliding through my fingers.
    I love that in a world of dishes and laundry and small children, knitting actually has a beginning and a middle and an end (even if the end is the frog pond!).
    I love how people smile when I give them something I made.
    I love how knitting unwinds me after a long day, and my speed slows as my mind relaxes.
    I love the potential in each and every ball of yarn, and watching it decide what it wants to be. A bit like children growing up, but faster and with far less severe consequences if it all goes wrong.
    I love knowing there will always be another ball of sock yarn.

  81. I’ll tell you what I DON’T like about knitting…I never want to put it down! Or work out any more, and not much of reader as I used to be (which is really sad!). I could call into work sick just so I could sit & knit. I live for that on my weekends to do nothing but knit and watch movies, politics or listen to music,etc. If I see a sweater worn in a movie, I am inspired to make one like that. I love that as difficult/intricate as it looks, that it is unpretencious, a simple pleasure of creation. I love the community knitting creates whether on a blog or a knitting circle. I love to collect patterns and see if I have the right yarn in my stash. I love it for all the reasons mentioned above. I am really trying to learn Irish Cottage Knitting, because I love the way Stephanie’s knitting looks, and I aspire to accomplish that(btw, how can one learn how to do that?) I love being the one who sticks out a Starbuck’s knitting when others are on a laptop.
    TO DONNA IN ENCINITAS: I love going to Common Threads or Black Sheep and knitting at or on the beach ALL DAY. Idrive down there from So/Orange County, grab a cup of coffee from Lofty Bean, just to do that. Whenever I buy yarn, I always feel the way I do when I buy myself shoes/clothes at a good sale, like it something special. Needless to say, that hasn’t happened these past few years. That’s okay though, as long as I have yarn & needles, I am totally content/complete and peaceful.

  82. I was describing a porcelain teacup to a friend, telling her how it was inspiring a cardigan design- “and it has these intarsia flowers painted on it”. She laughed and said “you’re such a knitter.” Great praise, eh? Knitting has literally changed the way I see the world.

  83. I love that my friend knits. I send her yarn (or she pulls from her stash) and back comes beautiful objects d’art. She even knits socks for my ginormous spouse – and everything always fits so perfectly! Knitting means mathematical patience to me ( which I lack entirely) and then genius comes off the needles.

  84. Knitting mistakes can always be undone. Little mistakes can be tinked, big ones can be completely ripped out, you can even throw the whole thing away if that’s all it’s good for.

  85. Knitting is patient; it waits for you to finish it, without judging you. I am finishing up a knitting project started by my mother, who passed away over 2 years ago. I think of her with every stitch.

  86. I love the endless possibilites.
    I love that I can do something I love AND there’s a reward (something to wear, a gift, etc.) at the end.

  87. Well, damn. I was so certain they were Spring Forward. I suppose a conscientious person (or one who already loved Spring Forward) would knit these too, in the interests of research.
    What? It could happen.

  88. I like that I can make something come into being. No cardigan? Cardigan! It’s so much more constructive that spending five hours clothes shopping and coming away empty handed, or staying up late trawling the internet for garments I actually a) like, b)can wear (ie, that fit), and c) can afford.
    Of course, that’s assuming that the knitting goes well and the swatch isn’t a dirty little liar (I am looking at you, cloche hat that came out big enough to be a bucket).

  89. What I love about knitting is that I can sit very still, making almost no movements except for the tiny ones my hands make as they knit a sock or sweater. As I sit and knit so quiet, I can hear the whole world around me rushing by, and I know that I can breathe and I think they have forgotten how.

  90. I LOVE the feeling of pure pleasure and groundedness that comes over me when I knit no matter what kind of day I’ve had.

  91. I love that there is always something more to learn; some new yarn or pattern to enjoy; my friends are always appreciative of knitted gifts; it prevents boredom; and it fills my desire to create, create, create!!

  92. I love that I can still learn something new, can still tackle a challenge (but not always master it!), can use my creativity and skill to produce something pretty and often useful. I’ve learned to relax with my needles. I like the assurance that my brain is still working — most of the time. I love meeting and learning from artists such as you, Stephanie, and enjoying your writings.

  93. As far as my input is concerned, my daughters are pretty much done. They are 24 and 27, and I can only offer occasional advice – ask your doctor, ask YouTube, this is the way Grandma made it. I don’t mind being redundant (in both senses!!), but it has taken some getting used to.

  94. Knitting allows for some stress release, some mind distraction so as to calm one nerves. And while at times it may bring out some nasty language and behaviours (like throwing yarns around is mature!) – it still brings a zen-like connection to others both here and there near and far – and even produces a product that you can see, feel, admire and share as it lives on. It’s like leaving a piece of yourself around the world.
    Dorothy

  95. Wow those are amazing socks!
    Life is a process – there are always unfinished items. It’s like a river, it’s gonna keep flowing whether or not you like it with the occasional obstruction, back eddy and other unexpected, undesirable things. How we go with that flow is what living is all about.
    As for kids and being finished… You’re someone’s kid… are you finished?
    Far as I can tell your kids are doing well and are positive additions to the stream of humanity. I think that’s about what we get to “finish” with our kids. After that, they grow up enough that they are partners in this life/flowing thing with us.

  96. I love the limitless potential in a ball of yarn. It can be anything! And there are never any boring moments, even if it means I carry 2+ knitting projects with me everywhere, all the time. It IS possible to find a purse to hold them, oh yeah, and the wallet LOL
    Knitting makes friends of strangers in the most trying of circumstances; easily finds kindred spirits – I’ve never seen technology do that.

  97. I dont know about you but “finished” people are rather boring I would rather know the unfinished, those still on the journey, as for knitting, I love the fact there is always another project to challenge my abilities, always another wouldn’t that be nice to knit project, I like that I can finish a project, I love the fact that my knitting will never be done. So Steph, never finish you, the world is a better place because you aren’t

  98. I love that in a world so unforgiving of mistakes that knitting is wonderfully forgiving. While you cannot rip everything out all the time, you can often rip things out dozens of times and still have a yarn worth working with.
    Of course, the number of times knitting forgives mistakes goes up when you use quality materials. I had less mileage in my woolease days.

  99. I can be working on a knitting project with so much focus required that a break is needed. Find another lovely knitting project, simplify it to just basics and use more knitting to create the break needed from the first piece, two projects that race themselves to completion.

  100. Knowing that there is love in every stitch. I am not a religious person, but all my prayers and hopes and love go into my knitting. When a grand baby is wrapped in a blanket I have knit, I know they are wrapped in my love in the only way I am able to protect them.

  101. I love the community that came with the knitting habit. You’ve instantly got something in common with zillions of other people out there in the world and all you have to do to find them is whip out your project-on-the-needles. It’s a barkin’ miracle, I tell ya.

  102. my husband walked in the room just as I was looking at your socks and asks, “Are those socks made of bacon? They look like they are made of bacon. I’d like some socks that look like bacon.”
    Thank you for knitting beautiful socks (that only a little bit resemble bacon).

  103. I love that knitting has been with me for most of my unfinished life and has given me great comfort and joy. As a child I struggled to make the pointy sticks work and my mother guided my hands, giving me my own time with her among 5 siblings.College brought the dreaded boyfriend sweater curse…if only I had known then! I love that knitting in my twenties lead me to weaving which was a challenge and so expansive that I set aside knitting. I met my husband through weaving, so knitting gave me that as well in a way. When I had children I started knitting again and watched my loom gather dust as I tucked a bit of knitting in here and there while they grew, it was great at sporting events, piano practice and all the other waiting that you do with children. Then when the grandbabies began arriving I was able to knit those special baby heirlooms. I just began teaching my oldest grandchild to knit and although I am far from finished it is just one more step in my never ending knitting journey. The community of knitters is a nourishing group that helps make this journey wonderful and I am glad I finish knitting projects but even more pleased that knitting goes on and on in an ever changing way.

  104. I love the way I can actually feel myself learning. (I’ve only been knitting for about a year and a half. Will this feeling ever go away?)
    I love that I now can actually enjoy waiting times and boring activities. I suffered through my oldest daughter’s college graduation, but the rest will be a breeze!

  105. I love that I can now look at those socks and understand how it was done! (Learning. Nothing like it.)

  106. I love that knitting connects me with others, in many ways. With strangers who donate yarn, strangers who knit from it, and strangers who will wear finished items. Knitters are kind and generous people and it is very comforting.
    I love how an idea in my head becomes something warm and tangible, limited only by my imagination and skills. And when it does happen, it’s truly unique.
    I love to see warm little feet in handknit socks — one of my children doesn’t understand the purpose of a blanket, but would wear her pajamas and socks to bed.

  107. I love that it can be anything I want it to be. There is endless possibility in a ball of yarn and two sticks. Clothing or toy or tool. Warm or cold. Useful or frivolent. Complicated, plain, detailed or brute. I love that I can change my mind at any point, undo/alter what I’ve done and make it *more* of what I want it to be.
    I love, too, the community is has brought to me and how it’s opened my eyes to that.

  108. I love the sound of the knitting needles clicking. That sound stops me from thinking about everything else. I love stopping to look at my knitted item, seeing it take shape. And I love that I’m just one person, keeping a long-time craft alive.

  109. I love reading your blogs.. they are grounding and inspiring all at the same time. (and no, your kids are never done. Until you take your last breath. then, they are on their own.)
    PS, so glad I have the favorite socks book. I’m casting on as soon as I finish 4 other pairs i’ve started and *not* finished!
    Cheers!

  110. When the kids were small (2.5 year apart) and accomplishments (other than parenting) in those days included feeding, cleaning, and doing laundry for the household — none of which were ever “finished” — I made a pair of socks a week and loved how accomplished it made me feel! I still make about a pair a week – A great habit to have and handy at birthday time!

  111. I knit mostly small projects, becuase I love the feeling of having finished. I was so excited to see I have actually knit this sock before you posted about it, but I put the sock aside years ago and went on to other projects. When I had ankle fusion surgery early January I really only needed one sock, so I deemed the project finished and packed my solo sock in my bag when I headed to the hospital. Photo proof on Ravelry. My favorite part of knitting is that the shared experience has created bridges in relationships with my step daughter, sister in laws, friends and my mom. And I love that I have this wonderful hobby to keep me sane while I recover from surgery. Thanks for your inspiration.

  112. I love the portability. I love that it helps me talk to people I don’t know, about something I love. I love covering those I love with knitted things (they even like it, too).
    So many things to love!

  113. So I’ve only been reading you for 5 years or so, and laughing and loving and feeling kinship with you and all your readers, and today you hit the nail on the head so hard I had to comment. YES… this is what satisfies me about knitting, well, this and many other things… but something finished is so satisfying, and so many things in my life can never be finished!

  114. I love that even with expensive yarn, knitting is cheaper than psychotherapy… 😉

  115. The creativity, hands down. I have a little trouble matching the yarn to a pattern and getting started but from there on, it’s just all so creative!

  116. I love picking out yarn for a pattern, or picking out a pattern for some yarn. I love the process. I love it when I learn to do something new. And I love that when I am done, I have a gift for someone – sometimes for me!

  117. I love that when I knit I have something to show for my time. I suppose it is obvious I am, in so many ways, a production knitter, but I like to keep my hands busy. Time spent in movies, in line, on hold results in something.

  118. EXACTLY!!! This is why I love knitting! Things get finished, as opposed to my chaotic life that’s always messy. Plus, I realize that I also get positive acknowledgement for my knitting, something I don’t get much (my kids aren’t grateful for my efforts of raising them, for example… Just wait til they have their own kids. Then they will be ever so grateful for the fact that I raised them the way I do!).
    When I wore my Silverbelle Sweater to the Vogue Live knitting convention in Seattle, people stopped me every five minutes, literally. I got so many compliments, my ears burnt! So I keep knitting, of course. And I didn’t even mention the fact that knitting is my emotional therapy.

  119. Life is about the journey. If everything was finished there journey would not be very long or interesting. Enjoy the ride.

  120. That was fun reading the blog and comments! I would add: I love love love starting a project. New Yarn, a new pattern, I love the excitement of it. I do have a lot of unfinished projects but that’s okay. I actually do seem to finish them, after 20 more are started. Irealized that I feel kind of empty and nervous without a lot of yarn projects going on at the same time. You, know, like, aaahhhccck, no new project, what will I do! That kind of thing.

  121. I like that I can be doing something (knitting) and nothing (sitting) at the same time. So perfect for visits with elderly relatives. Just finished a sock that was done exclusively in the company of an 89 year old woman. (for her, of course!)

  122. My fiber world is the one part of my life where I make all the decisions. I’m the boss. Period. Exclamation point. Knitting and hand piecing quilt blocks is portable and that rocks too. Finishing stuff is great and the sense of accomplishment I get from opening a quilt or donning a sweater I made so long ago that I don’t remember all the work I put into it. I sometimes surprise myself with what I made that didn’t seem so great at the time. “Wow! I really made that!” Good for me. Giving knit or quilted items to people and being told years later that my efforts were still appreciated. I made a sweater that was too small for me and I gave it to a coworker for her daughter. 5 or 6 years later she told me when her daughter out grew it she gave to a mutual friend with 3 younger daughters and the sweater was making its way through that family. Just warms the heart. Knitting and quilting just keep on giving back to me.

  123. I love creating beautiful things…the finished product is love in tangible form. And I love the sense of peace I feel when I knit….great therapy for all that unfinishedness in life.

  124. the same. finishing. i love it. and there’s a whole lot more… i just plain can’t get enough of knitting. ever. xo

  125. Oh Steph, this post is so timely. I’ve been having a really hard time lately with things unfinished (when you want them to end) things finished (when you want them to go on forever), things that are just plain stuck, and things that seem always out of reach. Know what I mean? Thank you, your post has made me feel normal, in such an unexpected way – must be the reference to knitting. 🙂 Thank God for people in our lives that make us smile.
    The socks are absolutely beautiful!

  126. Tonight I opened your blog and interrupted my husband to squeal, “EEEEEE!!! She made the socks I made!!!!” I made those socks for my sister, and I loved the pattern so much (so predictable, so rhythmic, so soothing) I made them again for my mother. Someday I will make them again for myself.
    I cannot begin to list the things I love about knitting, but they are all tied up in the magic of making. Am I a great big dork to be excited that we have made the same thing?

  127. I love it all! Every bit of knitting- okay maybe not so much when my knitting has to go into a time out for being bad. Like yesterday when the stitches I swore were purl on the chart looked so much like knit stitches and vice versa for the entire heel flap………
    I love that knitting is the main objective on my upcoming girls weekend to Chicago too!

  128. I love the possibilities of knitting – dreaming of what my stash can become. And I love finishing items – though at the moment I have too much of a case of start-i-tis, and have lots of things on the needles and not much getting finished. But, as your post says, those things can get finished (in as much as one’s arthritis will allow).
    Thank you as well for letting us in on your world of house renovations – it’s good to know that other people also half-finish things around the house and then years pass and the unfinished task is still there, waiting. 😉

  129. I love the sense of accomplishment when I finish another project and knowing that once it’s donated it will keep a stranger warm and hopefully filled with the knowledge that someone cared enough about them to make it just for them!

  130. Interesting post. Knitting projects get finished, but there are many on the needles waiting for attention, and yarn in the stash awaiting cast on. I read once that when your “In Box” is empty, you are probably dead, or comatose…that may be true.
    But there is something very satisfying finishing a knitted project, casting off, done! Taking string and turning it into something… And then moving to the next……..

  131. Well I think it is a control thing! According to others I am a control freak, of course I don’t agree but my knitting…….. well “I” can decide what I make, when and for who and if I want to finish it now or …perhaps whispering here that UFO which is lanquishing in the wardorde since the ’80’s may finally see the light of day. I get to choose the yarn , size and shape … the “power” Lol
    PS sorry to say when it comes to children I have one just turned 34 with two of his own and he is definately still a work in progress!!
    Cheers
    Beverley

  132. I like the smell of the wool and flax and linen and hemp. Mostly wool. I like the smell of the wooden needles (reminds me of violin days). I like the feel of wooden needles too. I like the click-clack. Also, the part about starting with string and ending up with a garment. Very much I love my knit-sisters and our time together and our friendships.

  133. So today l called suicide prevention for myself and knitting keeps me living. Thank you, one stitch at a time.

  134. I love how even a few stitches can soothe my soul and comfort or calm me as the occasion demands. I love that it offers me an easy and very portable creative outlet that helps to preserve a sense of me as Carie in the trenches of me as Mama to two tiny people. But the highlight has been the two occasions on which I watched my husband (wearing wooly socks of course) carefully dress a newly born daughter in vest, babygro, mama knitted hat and cardigan, before tucking them into my arms in the blankets I made for them.

  135. The solace. Knowing that tucked in baskets throughout my house and always available is the comfort of repetitive moment or the getting lost in complicated patterns; the joy in color and texture; and the unbridled right to explore and create!

  136. I love that it is so low-stakes, it doesn’t talk back, it won’t be offended if I knit on something else for the next few months, it’s tactile, it doesn’t need to be fed or cleaned up after, it will never fight with its sister, I get to choose, I have patience when there is a queue, it connects me to other people (recipients and knitters)… so many reasons to knit.

  137. Well, now that you mention it, that “finished” thing is pretty awesome. But the other important thing–and I know you agree with me, having read your books–is the way it transforms waiting time into knitting time. I. LOVE. THAT. Everyone around me may be churning frustration, and I’m blissfully churning knitwear. 😉

  138. I am so delighted to hear that someone else has walls that still need to be painted long after they should have been finished. Why can’t I just get the paint out and do it? Oh yea, the laundry, the house, the dogs, the dinner, the shopping all need to be dealt with. Not to mention all the knitting that needs to be worked on. I love knitting because of the creative outlet it provides me. Even though I mostly follow patterns I often modify them to make them my own, so to speak. I love that there is a begining, middle and end of in a project, whether it is a sock, a sweater or a blanket. I feel a sense of completion at the end of each stage.

  139. I love feeling creative. I’ve never been much of an artist, though I long to be one more often than I even admit to myself. And knitting makes me feel like an artist– choosing a palette, achieving a design, leaving my creative mark on the world (in which I accomplish mostly other boring lawyerly stuff). And I get to see my kids and family wear my goods (they even ask for more), which is very affirming when I’m my own harshest critic! Thanks for sharing your love!

  140. I don’t knit as much as most perhaps, I knit because I like the mental exercise, the learning, the accomplishment is a good feeling too. I do find I often have unfinished knitting. At this moment I have a cardigan to do the button band on and I’m in serious procrastination. Its for me so no rush but gee. Oh well. What happens if we ever accomplish all our unfiinshed projects as so ably outlined in your blog? My idea is that those completed items lead to more unfinished projects so all we can reasonably do is keep working and enjoy the ride.

  141. I love that there’s always a new technique to learn. But also that once you know a knit stitch, you don’t HAVE to ever learn anything else…unless you want to.

  142. There are so many things I love about knitting, even though my two year old and six month old sons don’t leave me with a lot of time to knit!
    And can I tell you just how much I love the colour of your socks? It’s a good thing you lost the band because I would have cheated on the yarn diet to get some!

  143. While it is satisfying to say something is finished (the dishes are done! – until the next meal) that seems to be a male domain thing. Most of the things we do to keep a home running are more nebulous. The lawn mowing may be finished (guy thing) but is laundry ever really done?

  144. Beautiful Waving Lace socks, Stephanie! I’m knitting a pair right now, only a few more inches on the second sock to go. You inspire me to not care a whit about all the unfinished stuff. If everything in life were finished, well that would be pretty darn boring.

  145. I love watching/making the yarn become something beautiful! When it’s a gift, I can pour love into it that will leak out onto the recipient when they use/wear it – just finished a baby sweater for a friend’s yet to be born son. When it’s for me, I can just feel really great while I’m wearing it, cuz I made that! I’m wearing a pair of socks that I made ages ago, but they got a hole in the leg where the yarn broke right after I finished them. Just fixed them last night, and am loving them!
    Love your new socks! Those are awesome! I’m usually more of a blues/greens type girl, but you’re inspiring me to try out more fall colors! Beautiful!

  146. Dear Chris, posted 4/22
    Not finishing things can be a sign of ADD. Seeing a doctor is the right thing to do, you will feel much better. Don’t beat yourself up about this, it can be managed…or not. Learning to live with it is okay too.

  147. I know this sounds a little dumb, but I feel less lonely when i knit. I lost my three beloved standard poodles last year and my husband of over 20 years left. My knitting will never leave, it is a faithful companion that brings me comfort and joy. I also feel a kinship with fellow knitters and spinners that seems to resonate around the world.

  148. I agree totally with Jean. I feel less lonely when I knit, like I am instantly connected on a cosmic/cellular level with every other person in the world with ‘sticks and string’ in their hands at that moment.
    I love that knitting allows me to touch/change the lives of people I will never meet. I’m a charity knitter.
    I love that the yarn and the needles never lose patience with me. They sit quietly when I put down a project, and have the ability to be ready to go again when I am.
    thanks for asking us to be thoughtful about something we love.

  149. i’m thankful for this blog, because i don’t know if i would be as good a knitter (or have knitted for so long) without it. inspiration, justification, humor, and camaraderie just to start. so thank you. i know it can be hard to take all the lumps that come with opening even a part of your life online, and i thank you for continuing to do it with grace and optimism.

  150. Finally…my feelings about socks have been put into words…your fabulous words!! When I start a new pair I know they will be finished (sometimes soon, sometimes later)as opposed to the unfinished garments, blankets, etc. that reside patiently in a dark closet. I have never counted my socks, which have long ago overflowed the “sock drawer”, several other drawers and now a collection of decorative boxes which I pretend are part of the decor. Love those sockies!!

  151. What do I love about knitting? When people oooo and ahhh over my latest project, I suppose. I love colorwork, and watching patterns emerge under my fingers–even pooling, which some people dislike, is a favorite for me. It’s all sort of RANDOM and SPONTANEOUS at the same time. Plus, I’m still a kid at heart, so the bright colors really make me smile.

  152. I love making new knitters. No, not that way, I only did that once. But the teaching way. I love hearing from other people how students were out and about talking excitedly about their knitting. It makes me excited all over again. I have three new ones busy picking out patterns right now, planning, choosing yarn and altogether so giddy it’s completely energizing!

  153. I’m making these identical socks right now. 1/2 through the second sock (so, unfinished). Yarn, different colorway, but lost the label a long time ago. Geez. Life is small, isn’t it?

  154. I love the feel of the yarn as I knit. I love watching something being created right before my eyes and love being done with something. Beautiful socks!

  155. I love knitting because it is relaxing, creative, useful (how else could I find a scarf or hat or sweater in the exact color/style I need it?) and it makes time that could be boring (waiting for an appointment, watching a sporting event with my husband, a long car ride) or stressful (sitting in a hospital waiting room before seeing a loved one, watching the news during a horrible event) less so. I also love the generational thing, knowing that I am doing something my ancestors did to keep their families warm and cozy. Teaching someone to knit (3 people so far) helps continue the tradition.
    And there is the fun of the hunt when looking through yarn shops!

  156. I bet I’ve made that sock pattern at least half a dozen times. (And the yarn looks just like some Anzula “squishy” that I have.) Knitting? What more can be said? Creative – productive – interesting – fulfilling – all of the above!

  157. To Feeling Better at 1:20 am… Please hang in there. Sending you a hug with hopes for MUCH better days ahead. Keep knitting…and as you say, one stitch at a time.

  158. I love knitting for its portability. I can be creative anywhere, be calmed, and wait for the cows to come home.

  159. Love, love, love knitting because I get lost in it. I relax totally in knitting, even when frustration with a certain stitch pattern sets in. Guess it just takes me away from work stress and, yes, sometimes family issues.

  160. I love knitting things for someone or myself and thinking about them (or me) wearing them. It’s such a labor of love and affection and it makes me so happy to do it.
    I made those socks for my mother in a soft coral from Lorna’s Laces and she loves them!

  161. YES. Yes. I often tell my loved ones that I use knitting as a measure of progress in my life. So much is unfinished and in flux, and I often feel unproductive. But knitting lets me measure my life in color and beautiful creations. Knitting gets me through. I love everything about it. I love working with pure color. I love dreaming about which patterns to match with which yarns. I love peeking in my stash and seeing soft potential looking back at me. I love the click of needles, the soothing purl re-set row in lace. I love slipping finished socks onto my feet. I love clothing my family and friends in my time, effort, and love.
    Seriously. Everything. Knitting is great.

  162. I love, taking a lump of wool and creating something, something beautiful, something useful. I impose order on chaos 😉
    I love that in this high-tech world I can make something with my own two hands.

  163. Knitting is love. When people want to pay me to knit I say, “I only knit for people I love.” When I give knitted gifts to my loved ones and I know they appreciate it, they are holding love in their hands.

  164. I like that knitting presents problems that MOST OF THE TIME I can solve. That is not the case in my work

  165. one thing only? Hmmm, harder than it seemed. I guess one thing abt my love of knitting is the ability to keep me sane. That’s a BIG one. Also I dont think we are ever really finished. Even if we lived forever, there would always be something to learn, do, accomplish, etc.

  166. I would be willing to help you paint, let me know when to come for a visit! You would have to feed me and put me up,I am a good worker and an excellent painter having painted all the rooms in my house at least once.
    I am so happy to have finished growing and my feet stay pretty much the same size so my socks always fit. So there is another thing to add to your list of finished, You feet are finished growing.
    I rather enjoy knitting (a lot and frequently and hope that I am not odd too!) and each sock, scarf, sweater I make I am happy, proud and finished with that item and ready to go on to the next. Sometimes I think it is a control thing…the one of the things in life that I can control. But it is something else as well that has to do with creativity. I put the yarn and pattern together and make an item of clothing. I found that I rather enjoy deciding what to make with the yarn rather than following someone else’s direction and so stay away from kits and etc and fequently add in something a little different to each item I make. Sometimes it is an “undocumented enhancement” or something that I purposely change. With my piece of string I get to do what I want.

  167. I just went to a fibre retreat and I love that I can spend time with other knitters and feel inspired.
    I also love that knitting has nothing to do with my job. I love being a biologist, but currently my job is very chaotic and out of my control a lot of the time. I love that I can go home and knit and I’m in control of what I want to knit and when. If I want to start a pair of socks, I can. If I want to knit a blanket with little fair isle sheep, I can. And I agree about finishing projects. 🙂 Finishing is so satisfying!

  168. What don’t I love? Color, texture, possibilities, other knitters..and even when you’re finished, if you don’t like it a do-over is an option.

  169. One of the best things is that my mom (who was always a knitter and often worked on projects) was introduced to socks by me. She surpasses me in every way when it comes to knitting–but I told her how much fun socks are, and she tried. And now she has so many!

  170. I love feeling wool sliding through my fingers. I love the compactness of knitting, I take it everywhere with me. I love that it keeps me sane in a very fast-paced world full of waiting, and waiting, and waiting. I love the connection I feel to the past, and to the future. I love saying “I made this.” To me, knitting is beautiful.

  171. I love that knitting has given me patience and probably saved me from a head-exploding stroke. I don’t care if there’s a huge line at the post office, a train crossing the road, a half-hour wait at the doctor’s office or nothing on TV. I love that knitting in public has introduced me to all kinds of people and given me new friends. I love that there’s a whole world of people like me, people to whom I could say the words “knitting convention” and they wouldn’t look at me like I’m crazy, but instead ask “when and where?!” I love the feeling of accomplishment when I finish something or learn something new. And I love those socks! Going stash-diving right now…..

  172. Love everything about it, especially watching the magic that happens when what you’re making grows and grows and becomes wearable art, when just a few short days/months/years ago, it was a ball of string.

  173. wow, my list would be long too, but mostly I love it because it’s MY THING. I don’t have a “knitting boss” no one can tell me I’m not doing it right, or put me through a yearly review, where I’m told “you’re doing great, but….” I get to decide what I’m going to knit, what yarn I’m going to use, when I’m going to do it (not often enough, though), and I’m the only one allowed to judge the finished product.

  174. Funny you should feature your new Waving Lace socks. I just happen to be wearing my navy socks made by that pattern. Love them to pieces!

  175. This post made me realize that finishing is what I love most about knitting. Like you, most things in my life are (and may never be) finished: my research, my fitness level, my sense of self. We just need to improve upon each of these every day knowing and accepting we will never be done with them. Except for my research of course-I’ll be finishing my Master’s degree by the fall and though we won’t know everything there is to know in my field I’ll be done my piece.

  176. I love that I can take a long faculty meeting, or any meeting, a long flight, or car ride and when it’s done, I have “something to show for it.”
    I love that it is easier to control my tongue and my impatience when I can knit while listening to someone go on and on.
    Knitting baby hats is the only time that someone commenting, “oh that’s cute,” is not offensive to me.

  177. I love that I can abandon my knitting for weeks at a time when my job gets crazy for weeks on end (I’m a resident physician) and it won’t be hurt by the abandonment and will still be there when life settles down enough for me to attend to it again.

  178. That’s exactly how I’ve been feeling lately… unfinished. House, kids, laundry, me and so much more. And let’s tack on winter because we still have snow on the ground here and in the forecast even if it is in the 40’s today (I’m in Fairbanks, Ak). Fortunately I have a lovely shawl in a lovely pattern that I’m knitting with a delightfully soft and pretty yarn that I think I’ll manage to finish soon. Hurray for knitting!

  179. I love that I can take a piece of string, and two pointy sticks and end up with a thing. All by making loops intertwine and dance with each other. One string. Two sticks. Brilliant.

  180. I love seeing something that would otherwise never existed come from my hands.
    I love looking at a new pair of socks and thinking: “Not bad for 4 sticks and two very long pieces of string.”
    I love rhat it makes my blood pressure go down enough to wow my doctor.

  181. I could go to a costume party as if it were come-as-you-are; I would be Entropy. Ever increasing (in so many ways). So, I don’t know if you’ll feel any better to know this, but my life is at least as unfinished as yours is. (Do I get points added or deducted for not having an unfinished book? Unless you consider that I don’t have one started, nor have I ever finished a book, as being waaaay behind.)
    I am glad you have the socks. Revel in them.

  182. I love that I can take a beautiful skein of Euroflax linen, gaze at it’s gorgeousness (it’s linen after all!) and then turn it into something fluid and drapey and beautiful that I can WEAR. Any time I want to. All because I know how to knit.

  183. Hi my name is Rose and I was wondering if you have patterns on how to knit a grape leaf?

  184. I love knitting for the wonderful friends and teachers it has brought into my life. I couldn’t image a day without fiber.

  185. I love that I can read your blog post and recognize the pattern and know that I have knit them too, even though I don’t have much time to knit and I’m no where nearly as skilled as you.
    But knitting isn’t judgemental about time and skills. I love that

  186. I love to knit for others. When I give them the completed item I can truthfully tell them that I thought about them with every stitch I made. I didn’t even realize this until someone asked me once what I was thinking when I was knitting as he had seen a smile on my face. I had been thinking of my daughter wearing the finished sweater. That same daughter asked me to knit a pair of socks for a university student she met while working in Pakistan. He now has his socks and I have the wonderful feeling of knowing that perhaps I have contributed one teeny bit to better relations between our nations. I love that knitting can touch much more than our skin.

  187. Oh Man! you just got me digging through my IWKnits. I know, i know, so much to do. i just hope that I have some yarn already balled up to start. Yeah, yeah gonna start these right away, socks, Oh boy! I’m going to start some socks…

  188. Several years ago I finally realized that I do not especially like making things. (Aaawk! Too much finishing) What I like is the act of knitting – the back and forth or around and around of it. You start with yarn of whatever quality and it looks like a cat toy. But knitting that same yarn is soothing, and creates a fabric with texture and color variations and whatever else you want. Making things involves getting the size/gauge/and whatever else right, and finishing it by a certain date and hoping the recipient likes it because there isn’t a store on earth that will exchange it for them. My stash is probably half UFOs, half yarn bought for something that never made it past the gauge stage.
    Steph, your list of unfinished things was interesting. Nope, children are never finished. (See your mom’s relationship with you to understand that.) The things that are unfinished are just that, things. In the long run things don’t matter. You can’t take them with you when you go, and most likely our obituaries won’t even mention the fact that we never did get around to changing the wallpaper in the up and downstairs halls. I doubt the quarter-round molding will make the paper. My husband and I finally realized that not only did we have a better time going to all our son’s swim meets than we would have had slapping fresh paper on the wall, choice had a better effect on all three of us.

  189. I live in the tropics and knitted garments are not of any use. There’s only so much premmie stuff one can knit for neonatal units. Happy knitting would be to simplify one’s life (cut down unfinished things) in a place cold enough to justify the knitting addiction. Yes YH, i got hooked/needled into socks (dpn too) by yr blog. Ticked socks off my list (trophy, not for wear) and they are easy to store. No idea why i knit.

  190. Your post reminded me that I have that book in my yarn room(haven’t looked at it lately). Socks are my favourite knitting project-no matter how complicated, the end is always in sight in the near future. And speaking of socks, last night when my feet felt chilly in bed, I got up and put on a pair of my Lenores and hopped back into bed with warm feet. Thanks, Stephanie!
    Cheers and red wine, Hazel.

  191. Ah, knitting. The only thing in my life that stays done once it’s finished…unlike the the dishes, which always need doing, but are never done!

  192. I love how you too have a lot of unfinished things in your life. Life is a process, and never seems to be finished….but knitting projects…we can all say we have some UFO’s or hopefully a lot that ARE FINISHED!!! Love those socks, and the color is beautiful! Love reading your blog!

  193. I like to make pretty things with my hands. Knitting obliges. Your children–it’s now their job to “finish” themselves.

  194. I love that there is always something new to knit. I’m not going to run out of knitting (or patterns or yarn, at this point, which is good, in my opinion. Maybe not in DH’s eyes…) I also love that I have a hobby that I can bring with me. I spend most of my life waiting to help or fetch my children, right now, and I seldom have a chunk of time that is only mine. To be only me. But I don’t minding all the “waiting for other people,” because the whole time I am doing their thing, and not my thing, I am making things. Things that I love.

  195. I work in my LYS, and I love that while I can’t stop terrorism, cure cancer, make people stop being mean to each other, or mend your broken heart, I can usually fix your knitting. It is a small thing, but it is a start.

  196. I love so many things about knitting. I love that knitting projects are finish-able. And that knitting is one of the few things in my life I do not HAVE to do. (The same for the spinning).
    But what I love most is the idea that knitting and spinning are such good metaphors for life in general, because once you “finish” the spinning (the making and/or dyeing of the yarn), and once you “finish” the knitting (the sweater is bound off, the ends all neatly tucked in, the blocking done), it is “finished” but it isn’t really “done.” The yarn or garment may be complete, but it is only a stage of transformation.
    You start with wool, and the sheep has “finished” her job when she is sheared (at least she is finished for this year). Then the fleece must be picked and cleaned and scoured, carded and then spun, and dyed at some point if you wish. And then you have yarn, “finished” yarn, meaning that it is still wool, and yet it is now something else, a different state of being, because now it is “yarn.”
    And then you knit it into something, and it is still yarn, and still wool, too … but it is also something else … the yarn has changed its configuration, but it has not ceased being wool, nor has it ceased being yarn. Now it is yarn shaped into a garment.
    And when you have completed the garment, and begin to wear it, it is still wool, still yarn, and now also it is a sock or a shawl or a sweater, and it will begin another stage of development. It will be worn and loved and eventually need repair. It will develop a patina and personality of its own, if it is a favorite piece. People may begin to recognize it as a significant icon of the wearer. And now it is wool, and also yarn, and also a sweater (all at once) and now also a symbol of Stephanie — imagine someone looking into a crowd, and saying, “look, there she is, that’s her russet sweater, I recognize it from here.” It has become something unique to you, or to the person for whom you knit it.
    If it is outgrown by a child, it may be passed on to another child and worn again, or it may be unraveled and made into another garment. After much love and wear, it may be felted and made into a useful bag, or a throw pillow for the couch, or patched together into a blanket made from remnants of other garments.
    Knitting, in the right hands, is not only something that can be finished, but it is also something that is never really “done.” There is a sense of the eternal about it, whether you think of passing on the garment, or passing on the skill to make another.
    You can finish each and every garment you knit. But you can never finish knitting. And I like that idea very, very much.

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