Why I Knit: Finding Magic in Every k2tog + A Giveaway!

Why I Knit: Finding Magic in Every k2tog

“I learned to knit, but I just never got into it.” I hear this countless times while teaching knitting classes, or discussing hobbies with friends, but I have never understood how it could happen. How could someone have knitting needles in their hands and not feel that surge of happiness like I do?

There is a certain learning curve for knitting, I understand that. However, I listen to the click of my needles late at night, and can’t help but feel calm and relaxed. Knitting is my way of slowing down and listening to myself. My thoughts wander deeper and deeper into my mind as I absent-mindedly count out the *k1, yo, k3, yo, sk2p, p1, k3tog, yo, k3, yo, k1* of my pattern.

These are the moments when I know myself. I am able to process the experiences of the day with every purl stitch and I can just sit in the present moment and work on one thing at a time.  The rest of the time, I am so frantically working towards the end of the day that I miss most things as they speed by. I couldn’t tell you what I ate for breakfast, I can’t remember where I set down my phone, and unless it’s written down somewhere, I’ve most likely forgotten my entire to-do list.

But just a little bit of yarn and that all turns around. I can tell you what row I’m on, what pattern I’m making, and I can even tell you what I was daydreaming about when I finished that last piece. I sit there with the familiar motions and let the rhythm calm my mind like beautiful music.

***

Why I Knit: Finding Magic In Every k2tog

Nobody really taught me how to knit. I remember someone working on their own pair of socks who tried to quickly explain what they were doing so I’d stop asking questions. I remember picking up a ball of yarn and using the needles to make a horrible mess of knots when I was 8, but I had no skill then. It just sort of happened — one day, knitting was as seamless a part of my life as walking or tying my shoes.

In my college years, knitting was never too far from me. I kept a ball of yarn and needles in my backpack and I could finish a chunky knit infinity scarf over the course of one lecture, or a beanie by the end of a 3-hour session.  Professors usually asked me if I was paying attention, but never really cared if the person in the back of the room was paying attention — just as long as they were awake. When I passed with flying colors, they were floored and joked about how knitting should be recommended coursework.

At my dead-end job in retail (which I loved, can’t you tell?), I had a ball of yarn in the pocket of my horrible, awful, red vest. I worked at a craft store, so nobody complained as long as the counters were clean and customers were attended to.  In fact, a few of those customers now know how to knit because the work was slow and I had time to show them the basic knit stitch.

Eventually, I taught knitting and crochet classes at the store.  I loved the idea that there was one more knitter in the world because of that work. When they came in for another skein of yarn to work on the week after one of my classes, I was overjoyed. Keep knitting, I thought. Keep knitting through all the hard times and all the knots and tangles!

***

Why I Knit: Finding Magic in Every k2tog

There is a camaraderie I felt with those people in the yarn aisle, shopping for their next project. These people understood what so many out in the world had missed. Those frustrating growing pains of learning to knit had paid off and now they were knitters. They could sit down on a couch, in the park, on the bus, anywhere and create something from a pile of yarn.

Through every dropped stitch, matted skein, and fumbled stitch, I’ve created a skill and habit of creating. I find peace and happiness in a ball of yarn and then I transform it into something breathtakingly beautiful. It has its flaws, an irregular stitch here or there, but that is the monument to the hours of quiet and stillness that I spent learning to listen to my own heart while the click-click-click of the needles kept me grounded in the task at hand — and that is why I knit.

This post is part of the Grace Notes blog hop. You can find more posts celebrating life’s everyday magic by visiting Grace Notes.

Enter to Win

To celebrate the Grace Notes blog hop, I’m offering a chance to win a copy of Bella Grace Issue 7, courtesy of Grace Notes!

To enter, comment below and tell me where you find your everyday magic.

Enter to Win Bella Grace Issue 7

*Contest is open to U.S. residents only. Contest ends 3/18/16 at 11:59pm PST. Winner will be contacted via email.

Knitting in Action

I knit everywhere!

Pictured above:

Crafts / DIY, Giveaway, knitting, Uncategorized
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  • Barb
    March 9, 2016 at 1:50 pm

    Hi Sarah! I enjoyed your post very much. I don’t knit, but have found when I do work with my hands, it’s very calming and centering. I recently made some paper flowers in a desperate attempt to “unplug” from the world for a bit … and guess what? It worked! PS: I’m coming from the blog hop (not entering the draw.)

  • Kristin
    March 9, 2016 at 3:05 pm

    I find everyday magic in knitting, quilting, and a large cup of coffee.

  • Elizabeth Waggoner
    March 9, 2016 at 3:13 pm

    I love knitting! I love the quiet, rhythmic flow of it. I love that in the end, by waving those two magic wands around enough times, a ball of string can become a token of the heart. I love that art can be tangible and joy visible.

  • Cassandra
    March 11, 2016 at 4:29 am

    “Keep knitting through all the knots and tangles.” Oh, how I love that! I don’t knit, but I know the power of creating something from nothing. It’s a beautiful thing.

    I’m also coming from the blog hop, so no need to enter me into the drawing. Just wanted to say hello. 🙂

  • Annette Gendler
    March 12, 2016 at 2:43 pm

    Hello from a fellow Bella Grace blog hopper! Just wanted to say that I’m also a fellow knitter and crocheter, although this craft lingered in the background after moving to the U.S as I couldn’t decipher American patterns. Thanks to youtube, I’ve finally cracked that nut and the needles are clicking away again. As you say, it’s a productive and meditative way of dealing with boring things like waiting at the doctor’s office or a 12-hour flight or some lecture you have to sit through, and it’s also a great way to sink into yourself.

  • Claudia
    March 13, 2016 at 11:57 pm

    I am feeling out of sorts this winter since that is usually when I have the most time for a knitting project. Photography is my main everyday magic, although this year I have determined to explore mixed media, drawing faces, and filling an art journal has sort of become a priority. But knitting something, even if it’s small is on my to do list, I do enjoy it!

  • Kim Collister
    March 14, 2016 at 1:37 am

    Loved your post and although I don’t know how to knit , I totally relate to your day in regards to my art. I can’t imagine a day not being in the creative process , I get totally and completely lost in it.
    Maybe one day I will try knitting❤️
    Kim
    Shopimgirl@gmail.com

  • Andrea Corp
    March 14, 2016 at 11:04 am

    Hi Sarah! I’m so envious of people who knit. My grandma taught me the basics when I was very young when she visited from England, but I never stuck with it. It’s one of those things that you look back and wish you really went for it! All the beautiful sweaters and scarves and colorful creations – handmade with love. It’s impressive! I love the thought of you at the back of class in college. 🙂

  • Tracie West
    March 15, 2016 at 7:15 pm

    Hello there! I love your story. I would imagine there is a certain peace that comes along with what you do. I’m just here to say hello, introduce myself and enjoy your blog. I’m also in the blog hop so I’m not part of the drawing you will be having.

  • Suzanne
    March 16, 2016 at 5:06 pm

    Lovely post. The way you get
    lost in your knitting is the way
    that I do when I write! Hours
    can literally pass as I “knit one,
    purl two” with words instead
    of yarn.

    I’m also coming from the blog
    hop (will be writing in April), so
    no need to throw my hat in the
    ring : )

    xo Suzanne

  • Tracy Macdonald
    March 17, 2016 at 11:25 am

    Your passion of knitting shines through- so important to have something we love. I liked it that you ended up teaching knitting in the store- you were meant to be there! Nice to meet you, fellow Grace Notes writer. Much abundance, Tracy

  • Colleen Tobiason
    March 18, 2016 at 4:01 pm

    I love your writing style. As a retiree from the corporate world I am rediscovering the creative side of myself. I recently purchased yarn and needles and am becoming more comfortable with my knitting stitch by stitch, row by row, making dish cloths to give my daughter in her Christmas stocking this year. Every stitch done with love for her and thankfulness she is in my life.

  • Teresa
    March 18, 2016 at 4:09 pm

    I find everyday magic in my son’s smile and in making little mixed media collages. I enjoyed your post, even though I never learned to knit. I definitely admire people who make knitting look easy! Also, your photo on your blog header is adorable.

    • Sarah
      March 18, 2016 at 6:06 pm

      Thank you so much! I collage as well and will be adding some fun tutorials in the future. Stay tuned!

  • EllaElla
    March 28, 2016 at 1:48 pm

    Oh, your post made me smile~ I love to crochet, but must conquer knitting~ I love how you have added joy to others passing on one of your gifts~ Yes, so many knots and tangles to deal with in one’s life-but the thoughts of yarn slipping through the figures configured with purls has such a beautiful Zen feel~!

  • EllaElla
    March 28, 2016 at 1:48 pm

    I have to laugh..I am just Ella…something locked up and I kept typing and nothing would post~ lol