January 4, 2010

Friends who make things

I was going to ask you today if you have any friends who make things, and then I remembered that you're (mostly) all knitters and mostly you all have a knitter friend, so yeah.  I guess you have friends who make things.  More specifically, I was going to ask if you have friends who make things and give them to you... which is a whole other kettle of fish and one you would consider yourself lucky to be in. 

I have friends who make things and give them to me.  I have a cowl Denny knit, a scarf Rachel H made,  Abby sent me her book Respect the Spindle , when she finished,  and so did Yarn-a-go-go Rachel  (Both are really wonderful, which is a relief, because especially with Rachel's book - a romance, I had terrible worries.  I know she's a good writer, but I also know I don't care for romance, and I was so worried that I would hate How to Knit a Love Song and then I would have to spend the rest of my life avoiding her so I didn't have to say it. Turns out it's one of those books that you read in one day. Great book.)   I have a skein of yarn that Rams spun for me that I can't even bring myself to knit- I love it that much... and really... It's the yarn that's the hardest.

I have sort of a yarn "thing".  I have a hard time knitting it. I love and respect yarn for what it is, and that can make it hard to use it up, because as much as I love knitting and knitted stuff, I feel like yarn is this massive ark of potential.  It sits there, and it could be anything.  There's a whole story embedded in it and there's no way to know what it is, and I just love that.  Once you knit it, that story is told... and you don't have yarn anymore.  Sure, you have something else (or Rachel H does, if it's another sweater I've knit that looks better on her than it does on me) and that's great too, but it isn't lost on me that yarn stops being yarn when you knit it, and if someone gave me yarn, then I really often have a hard time knitting it up, because yarn is forever baby... but socks get holes.

This yarn "thing" creates a huge problem if one of your friends makes you yarn- like my friend Tina does. Back when I was buying her yarn all the time it was bad enough, but now that the occasional skein arrives here that she dyed just for me... well.  Those skeins don't hardly ever get knit. Tina sends me skeins of yarn the way that other people send letters or postcards.  It's like communication for her.  Other people might tell you that they're thinking about a trip to the sea, Tina just mails a skein of ocean coloured yarn.  Other friends might tell you that they loved making gingerbread as a child, Tina sends you a skein of gingerbread inspired yarn. It's like a bizarre sort of fibre-based post-it notes or something.  I love it.  I love it so much that I signed up, years ago - before we were friends, for the Rockin' Sock Club, sensing, I think - that dyeing yarn was more than just dyeing yarn to her... that it was extra nifty.  I've been a member for years, and as we've come to have a friendship as well, the sock club has become more than that to me.  I even designed for it a few times, and that added another layer of fun to it.   The one thing I noticed though, is that my yarn "thing" really comes into it.  Tina sends the packages, and I open them, and look at the yarn and read the dyers notes and see what they designers have cooked up to go with her yarn and then... then the little yarn fetish kicks in, and even though there's always more to be had, I can't knit it.  I hoard it. I have a whole bagful, and I keep the patterns all organizer in a binder and I look at them all the time, but there they sit.

So then this year (the year of our new plumbing, furnace and appliances)  I thought that maybe this is the year that I give it a rest.  I thought that if I'm not going to knit the stuff that comes (or at least, not knit it much) why not skip the club this year- and then it hit me. (Let's not complicate it with the fact that the club is really cool this year, and I'd be a fool to quit the year that she has Meg Swansen)   I can't skip it.  It's stuff my friend makes, it's a little postcard from her every two months, and really...

I just like seeing how she thinks. It's her making stuff.  It would be like telling Denny I didn't want a cowl, or Rachel that I didn't want a scarf, or telling Abby or Yarn-a-go-go Rachel that I don't want to see their books.  It's Tina's stuff, it's one of a kind, it's the little piece of her that she's putting out in the world and dudes, I love it.  Wouldn't miss it for the world.  Signing up.  Again. We've all got our reasons for being in yarn clubs... those are mine.

Send the yarn.

Ps. sorry for the lack of pictures.  I can't find the stupid camera cable. Here's a picture of Hank and Megan's gingerbread house for this year to make up for it.

They had snowman shaped sprinkles.  It was a masterpiece. 

Posted by Stephanie at January 4, 2010 3:26 PM