The most recent issue of Twist Collective includes an essay defending selfish knitting. In that essay, Melanie Martens argues that knitters should knit for themselves - because we deserve it.
That seems wrong to me. I shouldn't be knitting for myself because I deserve a handknit sweater. That explains why I should have a handknit sweater - but not why I should knit one for myself. I could just go out and blow several hundred dollars on a sweater if this was just about desert - it would certainly save me money on needles and yarn in the long run!
I'm sure we all have different reasons for why we knit - or don't knit - for ourselves. For me, it's because that's why I wanted to knit in the first place. I wanted to make sweaters for myself - sweaters that actually fit the length of my arms, unlike the ones you get in stores. (The observant will notice after a while that my store-bought sweaters are all short sleeved and 3/4 length. I simply can't wear full length sleeves without cuffing them!) I wanted to make gorgeous sweaters, like the sweaters I remember seeing a woman in college make for herself.
I didn't pick up knitting in order to relax, or to meet friends, or to opt out of consumer culture. I picked it up, quite simply, to make beautiful clothes for myself. You wouldn't know it from my Ravelry projects list - it's all full of charity knitting and baby clothes. And my stash is full of unloved yarn that I bought for myself, just waiting to be turned into something beautiful.
Now that there are - gasp! - rumblings of a ThreeVIB on the horizon, I've really got to make some things for myself. [Don't ask me to reveal anything about these rumblings - I can assure you, though, that it's not me thinking about getting pregnant!] I'm going to work on all those projects I've been saving up for myself all these years. And, if ThreeVIB becomes a reality, I will just make a lot of baby socks and bibs.
All of this is a way of saying that I have all but abandoned the last four ReVIB projects, and have been mostly knitting for myself. Okay, I'll give you a little ReVIB. Here's the crazy punk pants, which I really just need to finish seaming.
That's back on the left, and front on the right. These are pretty darned cute. And Mr. Quinn is starting to develop his mike skills. Last week, he grabbed my finger, and brought it straight to his mouth, as if he were about to scream "Anarchy in the UK!!" He'll need these pants in another few months for sure.
I've made quite a few scarves for myself. First is the "My So-Called Scarf", which I have been dying to make for years.
There it is, in a beautiful shade of Manos with pinks, plums, and golds that I simply adore. But there's a twist...
See that? Manos is a single-ply yarn, and boy is this one energized! It knit up at a weird angle, as if I were intentionally trying to knit on the bias. I haven't yet blocked this scarf, and I am trying to decide exactly how hard core to get with the blocking - do I remove the energy? Or do I try to keep some of that funny angled look?
At some level, I don't care, cause this scarf is snuggly and pretty! Yum!
The next scarf is the one I took to Rhinebeck to work on - because it's from a Morehouse Merino kit that I bought at Rhinebeck the first year I went.
This yarn is a beautiful combo of blues, purples, and greens that I couldn't resist.
It's a laceweight, knit in garter stitch on fat needles, which gives it a really open and geometrical look. I haven't blocked this one out, either - but when you do, the stitches look really angular and squarish. Cool.
The real problem with this scarf is that when I bound off, I bound off loosely - instead of using a loose bind-off. It wasn't quite stretchy enough. So I still harbor fantasies of ripping out the bind off and doing it again.
The third scarf is one that is in progress.
Oooh...isn't that just delicious? This scarf comes from a kit I picked up back in Paris earlier this year. It's a ribbed scarf made of three different colors of different kinds of yarns - a mohair, an alpaca, and a bamboo. The combination gives it warmth and silkiness. I can't wait to wrap this around my neck - but it is a pain to knit, since the mohair wants to just grab on to and get tangled with the other two yarns. I spend half my knitting time untangling!
I've also been working on some sweaters. The cat pee - thankfully - came out of Roam. However, there is new bad news for that project. I almost finished sleeve 1, and tried it on to figure out how long it should be, only to discover that it is skin tight! This was not a gauge problem - I was getting gauge. It looks to be a design issue that I should have foreseen. The pattern is made for stick figure arms, not strong, beefy peasant arms like mine! Ugh. There will be frogging someday when I get the heart to pick up that project again.
In the meantime, I picked up some yarn I'd been dying to knit with and cast on for a lacy mohair sweater on fat needles. Instant gratification. And sure enough, in less than a week, I had this:
That's Kim Hargreaves' Hannah - minus a little bit of seaming, of course. (I am not about the finishing right now...) I'm pretty excited about this one, but I really want to make sure I seam it properly, so the stripes line up. I need this to be a good sweater for me.
There have been other sweaters on the needles, too. But this post has already become way too long, so those will have to wait for next week! Apparently, I need to update much more often. I've got no clever way to end this post, so I'll just end it here.