It’s the holidays, and, for me–the perpetual student/teacher–this has traditionally meant at least a week of hanging around crafting stuff. When I was younger, I would make elf costumes for myself (have I said too much?) so that I could properly dole out presents to my family on Christmas. But sewing has never been my strong suit and, as I recall, those elf costumes generally involved a lot of safety pins and poor hand stitching.
I recovered from those elfin years to discover that I loved baking and comic books and organizing those comic books. And, around my 12th birthday, my dear aunt introduced me to jigsaw puzzles. And, really, life was never the same. Christmas break suddenly meant time with a folding card table and whatever puzzle I could afford. I developed quite a small stash and would do and undo them until I knew every inch of those images. Up until just a few years ago, I was doing bigger and bigger puzzles over the academic break–I even managed to get my dear partner involved–until we were up to 5000 pieces and nailing extensions onto the dining room table. I was appreciated for my “puzzle vision.”
This led me to wonder: is knitting somehow an extension of this organizational drive and “puzzle vision”? I mean, knitting is a stitch-by-stitch pastime that can involve quite a bit of minutia and planning and careful organization.
It all became clear, when I remembered the craft that directly preceded knitting for me. The missing link? Cross stitch, which I learned and worked on for about three years before my son as born. My craziest creation was this 18 x 12 beauty. This one took shape when I was pregnant and, as I recall, I had to keep moving the lap stand away from my expanding belly. It was finished right about the time that Z came into the world . . . and I never really touched cross stitch again after that.
A couple years later–well, ok about eight years later–I suddenly had the urge (and perhaps the time, headspace, and lack of toddler) to craft again. And there was knitting, just waiting for me as if I was searching for it all this time. It feels a little like coming home and finding hidden treasure all at once. And I’d like to think that the elf costumes, the puzzles, and the cross stitch all led up to the sweaters and the cable work, and the stitch counting.
And you? Any crafts you have loved before?