What is an “Adventurous Knitter”? (and are you one?)
On first thought, the word “adventurous” doesn’t seem to have a lot to do with “knitter.” Knitters aren’t climbing mountain peaks or rafting whitewater rapids. But knitting is often its own kind of adventure. There are highs and lows; there are challenges amid patches of smooth forward progress. Each new knitting project teaches the knitter something she may not have even known she didn’t know.
So in a way, all knitters -all makers- are adventurers. Trying new things and challenging yourself, that’s how I define adventure. So pat yourself on the back, knitter! You push yourself despite the risk of mistake and failure.
Sometimes, one runs across some knitting stories that take the idea of an “adventurous knitter” to a whole new level. Ravelry shares a feature they call “Community Eye Candy” on the site every Tuesday. In it, they feature a dozen eye-catching projects on a certain theme. I love this feature because they always feature a whole range of work: from pieces that make my jaw drop, as I think “WOW, how did she knit THAT! It looks so COMPLICATED,” to projects that look straightforward enough that I feel like I could totally cast one on myself and knit it up in a jiffy. Anyway, included in last week’s “Community Eye Candy” was a stunning photo of a knit wedding dress. This project was definitely of the jaw-droppingly complicated kind. I clicked on the link to look at the project details and only grew more amazed. This knitter didn’t have too many projects posted before she made her stunning wedding dress. In fact, she only finished the project she called “my first knit” in September 2015. In other words, she hasn’t even been knitting for a year. All the other projects featured in her gallery were smaller, simpler knits (which makes sense for a beginner knitter testing out the craft.) But something inspired her to jump into the deep end with no life-jacket and give the complicated wedding dress a try. And was her adventurous spirit ever rewarded!
I love the first sentence in her project notes: “This is madness, I will never EVER be able to do this, but I just have to try… This’ll be my Everest!” What an adventurous knitter. I felt so inspired reading her story.
I’ve been knitting for far longer than a year, yet am not sure if I would be willing to jump into the major adventure of a knit wedding dress (although I did knit the cardigan I wore over my dress at my wedding). Still, I love the adventure aspect of knitting. I love trying to tackle projects just beyond my skill level.
When I say Yarn Birdy’s patterns are suitable for the “adventurous beginner” knitter this is what I mean. You should definitely feel comfortable casting on, binding off, knitting and purling. But once you have those skills in your repertoire, all you need to go further, all you need to complete a Yarn Birdy pattern, is the desire for knitting adventure. Maybe this feels like a little nervous tingle when you contemplate the idea of casting on a project with a whole bunch of techniques you’re not sure yet how to do. Maybe you can’t stop looking at and admiring a beautiful pattern, despite the little voice of doubt inside of you that’s thinking, I’m not sure… If this is you, you can totally knit a Yarn Birdy pattern. The thrill of overcoming each challenge as you reach it on your knitting adventure – it’s the best feeling in the world.