Knit In or Out?

March 22, 2007 at 8:46 pm | Posted in knitting | 7 Comments

Every Thursday I start the mental debate about whether or not I should head to the LYS and join in on the weekly “Knit-In” that goes from 5-8pm on Friday evenings. I can easily go by on my way home from work, and have been there twice right at 5pm to pick up some yarn. One time I even got up the nerve to ask the store owner to help me with a few stitch questions. I’m sure I can also get some great advice from the other knitters, but the circle of knitters seems like such a daunting, tight-knit (excuse the pun) group. How does a knitting newbie ask a veteran to slide over and make room? What if the owner politely suggests I come back once I’ve taken a beginner class? What if someone asks me my favorite knitting yarn and my blank stare tips them off to the fact that I really don’t know the difference between Merino and Alpaca? What’s a good icebreaker between a couple of knitters? I’m just not sure, but I’m hoping one of these Friday’s I get up the nerve to find out. I want a knitting mentor, or a sponsor even. So tomorrow, am I knitting in, or out?

Knit-in dilemna aside, I am very happy because today I surfed on over to Knit Picks and placed my first order. Along with a couple of hanks of fingering weight yarn, I picked out 2 sets of DPN’s and once my order arrives I’ll be able to start the Endpaper Mitts pattern. I’m so excited to start that pattern because it will be my first test of fair isle knitting. The cat afghan has color changes but I ended up using intarsia with a couple of stranded stitches thrown in. The first square came out fairly well, and I figure with it being my first, the squares can only get better, right? I’m also in the market for a set of Size 13 circular needles in a length less than 29″. I need them for the felted clogs that I’m planning on giving for Christmas this year. I think I’m going to follow Queer Joe’s example and make several pairs to felt all at once. Oh, another exciting thing..I cast on the stitches for my first baby sweater. I chose a nice pattern from Knitty called Daisy and am basically just working on understanding sweater construction, and to improve my seaming.

Another fun thing I did was email my entry into the Knitter’s Treat Exchange. Before Christmas I joined an ornament exchange and had a great time choosing ornaments for my swap buddy. She sent me some beautiful ornaments and who doesn’t like to get a treat in the mail? I’ll finish today’s post with the required questionnaire.

Knitters Treat Exchange Questionnaire

1. What’s your favourite type of yarn?
Well, being a novice knitter I really don’t have much experience with many yarns. I have heard that Alpaca is very soft, and lots of people rave about Koigu. I have just learned how to do socks so I’m enjoying sock yarn with interesting colorways.
2. What’s your least favourite type of yarn?
Hmm..I don’t much care for the squeaky worsted weight yarn from Walmart I’ve used in the past.
3. What’s the first thing you do when you visit a new yarn shop?
Truthfully, become extremely overwhelmed. But then I gather my wits and head straight to the sock yarn.
4. What other crafts do you do / would like to do?
Besides knitting? Does Gardening count? I started a little herb garden this year, it’s fun!
5. What magazines do you currently subscribe to?
Entertainment Weekly and People, though am planning on subscribing to Interweave Knits.
6. Put this type of magazine in order of preference:
Knitting / Home/ Food/ Garden/ Celebrity Gossip (just People magazine)/ Crochet / Other Craft / Fashion
7. What items do you like to knit / crochet? I like socks, and bags, but just cast on my first attempt at a sweater. I’m anxious to try mittens too, and fair isle hats.
8. Are you allergic to anything?
Tide laundry detergent
9. What do you like to* smell of? (*This is not a typo. The question is: What do you like to smell of)
Coconut and citrus
10. What’s your favourite way to relax?
Knitting in front of the’s my zen time.
11. You’re stood in front of a Victorian style sweetshop, an Italian cafe, an old fashioned bakery and a dainty tea room. Where do you go first?
I would walk into the bakery first.
12. What do you come out with?
I would come out with some type of croissant or scone.
13. Where do you go next?
Next I would head to the sweetshop for a divine piece of chocolate.
14. Any other words of wisdom for your pal?
If the knitter is weary the baby will have no new bonnet. ~Irish Proverb


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  1. I think you should go for it and join the group at your local LYS. They’ll probably find your interest and desire to join flattering. Yarn stores I’ve been to seem to be friendly like that. Then again I need to follow my own advice as I’ve been walking past the same knitting group at my local library for 3 months bacuse they look so tight-knit (sorry about the pun), and I’m afraid to interrupt. I figure they probably wouldn’t mind because they are knitting in public, and the Barbara Walker Pattern Treasury in my hand show be like a free pass, but there’s always that feeling of being the new kid in the cafeteria.

    I think you’ve motivated me to introduce myself. Good luck.

  2. Knit In! Be brave! You’ll probably have fun. A good ice breaker is “What are you knitting?” Knitters are nice.

  3. I have the same problem even though I have been going to my LYS since it opened. When I first got there, there was already a chummy group of people and even though I’d gone a few times, it was hard to break into the group. That being said, as a new knitter, you’ll find that people will love to give you tips and each week might have a different group of people (one time at my LYS there was also a spinner, so it was fun to chat…) You might also want to try your local Stitch and Bitch. The key is to just keep going back each week so that people get to know you… you’ll find lots of friends that way!

    Glad you are doing the KTE! Sounds like fun, doesn’t it???

  4. Just smile and let them know you are new. They will most likely embrace you into the group and be glad to mentor you along. If they are not that welcoming, you should not be hurt because of their rude behavior. The problem would be theirs, not yours. There is no harm in being new and trying to learn a new craft. Your instincts seem so good, you have challenged yourself to do new things (Brea Bag!) and your idea about learning more about sweaters by doing a baby sweater is so sensible, I’m proud of you!

    “Knit on with confidence,” as Elizabeth Zimmerman wrote.

  5. Hey there. Let us all know how the endpaper mitts come out; I am dying to try them my own self, but am intimidated by Fair Isle. Don’t be scared to go the the Friday Knit-ins either – if you go enough, pretty soon you will be part of the group. :o)

  6. Yes, we are all waiting to hear how Friday went, Ingrid!

    I’m thinking those endpaper mitts might help use up some elann baby silk that I have, I can’t figure out what to do with it.

  7. I hope you went to the knitting group, it sounds like it would be a good place to sit and knit. Don’t be intimidated, they were all new once, too! I understand not wanting to intrude, it’s always hard for me to introduce myself to a new group. But once you do, it’s a lot of fun. So please, go see what’s it like. Maybe take another friend along with you?

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