Finding community in (what can be) a solitary craft.

(Or... Confessions of a knitaholic.)

As an introvert, I could happily sit at home, alone, and knit (or sew etc) all day long without a thought of other people. I can knit on car journeys – just as long as someone else drives. I can take my project bag with me when I go to the Doctor's and most other appointments; the conversation is easy while your needles are going and nobody minds. It even acts as a conversation starter…

I have also realized that if I’m in a noisy or (to me) overwhelming atmosphere I can ‘retreat’ with my knitting and be fine. I have memories of my family calling me "The Spider" because I would sit in a corner making (and sometimes unpicking and remaking) things. I hated having idle hands.

I have always had ideas floating around in my mind that I need (and want) to work out before they get away from me, so I keep a notebook in which I jot things down to develop later. These jottings and sketches sometimes turn into finished items and sometimes become the path to other ideas…. You get the picture.

Me, a knitaholic? Well, I'm rarely seen without yarn and needles - but I don’t hide balls of yarn in the spare teapot on the back of the shelf, (yet).

I do find though that when I get to knit with others in a group I meet people with the same passion. People with whom I can resonate. Although they are not all, by any means, introvert like me they understand. They forgive the occasional ‘distracted’ look (a quizzical smile and “you’re thinking through a pattern, aren’t you?”). They like me being this way.

How about you? Is knitting your conversation starter, or your defensive strategy? Do you knit constantly, or only at times reserved for relaxation or good society?

Geoff Twigg