Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Dropped Stitches

My neck tickles just thinking of it!
(This isn't me, of course.)

Mom and I took a knitting class together when I was in 9th grade. I made a blue mohair sweater (on circular needles) and she made a pink one from the same pattern. Although the fluffy yarn made me look quite fetching, it was fuzzy and itchy. I only wore the sweater once, but it stayed in my drawer as evidence of latent creativity.

Reading Sher's blog reminded me of my own adventures with stitchery. (She creates masterpieces, while mine are just memories.)

Smashed between a couple of siblings on a road trip to California, I started a ski sweater. Knit one, purl two...I got into a rhythm and the needles clicked away for several hundred miles. When I finally climbed out of the car and held it up, it was ankle length! I unraveled it and knit the sleeves out of very curly yarn. The day after I got my braces off, I proudly wore my new sweater. The dazzling combination must have gotten me a date because I didn't have time to knit anymore.

(Not mine, of course.)

Afghans were crocheted while I sat on the porch and watched my little kids play in the dirt. The new baby got a welcoming cocoon to twist around her tiny fingers and toes. But I wasn't hooked; my interest didn't last.

Macrame then became my craft of choice. Who doesn't need a few plant holders dangling from the ceiling? But with a bunch of kids continually requiring water, I got annoyed by the creeping ivy begging for it, too. When the plants died, so did my enthusiasm for tying knots.

Quilting with yarn was all the rage in my neighborhood during the 70's. It was a combination of techniques. I quilted patterns using embroidery stitches and baby yarn. Each kid got a sampler quilt out of gingham, featuring cross stitch, French knots and lazy daisies. I even taught classes!

These are some of my creations.
The bedspread was quilted with red yarn, using embroidery stitches. Trust me. It was cute.

I dropped these hobbies as easily as I dropped stitches. Needlework brought out the worst in me. Threads tangled, pins poked and fabric frayed--by the end of a project my vocabulary wasn't fit for a decent home.

I didn't create him. I got him as a gift.

Finally, Dee took my needles away from me. Josh was a new cub scout and I was up late sewing patches on his uniform. The needle wouldn't go through the heavy fabric and it kept jabbing my finger, causing bloodstains on the shirt. Knots were forming spontaneously and my eyes teared up in frustration, making it impossible to guide the thread into the needle. The dog was hiding in the corner, scared by my outbursts. Gently Dee sent me to bed.

The next morning I found the shirt all ready for Pack Meeting. The elves must have come! From then on I let Dee handle the sewing projects. I've realized I'm not mature enough to handle dangerous objects like hooks and needles. Some things are meant to be dropped.


gab said...

I SO remember that paneled bedroom and cowboy bedspread. Adorable!

Thank you for guiding the way to non-craftiness...

Christie said...

Opa sews on cub scout patches? Because I will pay. Those patches are too thick to get ANY needle through without drawing blood. Tell him to expect a big package soon.

gramakas said...

It's good that we finally realize what we are truly good at -- or what we enjoy the most -- and let the rest go by the wayside. You keep writing and I'll keep quilting!

kenju said...

I have given up nearly all arts and crafts I attempted over the years: drawing, oils, stained-glass, decoupage, weaving, crewel embroidery, rug-hooking, etc., with a few things to show for them. I sewed scout patches until I was blue in the face - but no more. LOL

moon said...

As crafty as I can be, and as much as I love to sew stuff, or make stuff, I have NEVER had a penchant for any knitting or crochet stuff...I look at the needles used, with horror..I dont even want to try lol, I think, I would end up hanging myself with the wool, or impaling myself with the instuments lol.

Connie said...

You are a funny lady.LOL In our family my sister makes the masterpieces and I make the memories. I tried to crochet.. (can't even spell it). I figured it was the granny thing to do... There's a picture of poor Kenz in her stroller, wrapped up in yarn from head to toe, like an old granny square. I swear I'll never crochet again, my sister makes potholders that are beautiful!