Knit Together with Cynthia MacDougall
I am a knitter, so the primary question for me is “Why do you love to knit?” Before I can answer that, I also have to frame that question around “Why do you love to sew, quilt, cross stitch, embroider, spin, and weave?”
Once framed, my first answer is portability. By and large, knitting can be tossed in a bag and taken with me wherever I go. I don’t need a frame, or floor stand, or wheel, or loom to accomplish anything I would wish to make. The only restriction is the size of the project itself. Currently, I’m working on two afghan projects. The first was made in four sections, which were quite portable – until they were sewn together in preparation for the knitted border. At this point, its portability was compromised, and, with over 1000 stitches on a single round of the border, I’m understandably reluctant to call this a “travel project” any more. The second reason I love to knit is its tactility – the very feel of it. Knitting gives me so much control when it comes to the sense of touch. I can have three different projects on the go on any given day, and each one of them will offer a different tactile experience. I can work with a robust wool yarn whose very feel tells of the warmth the garment will offer. Minutes later, I can be working with a soft cotton yarn that will almost be a balm to a summer’s sun burn. Next, I can be working with a fine lace yarn made of fine wool and silk and, while I’m knitting with that, I can imagine the light warmth and drape this wispy knit will offer the wearer. There is comfort, indeed, in the way yarn passes through our fingers. Once a blanket project gets big it’s not so portable.
Read more in our Fall 2016 issue.