Stitch House and Knitting

Stitch House Knit Night, Friday night from 6-9 pm

I try to go as often as I can, but sometimes I just don't make it to knit night. Some Fridays I am just too beat to go, or too pooped to make the trek on the T. Lately, I have been going with Lauren, a knitter from our Monday Library group. She gracious enough to drive, so I get there without the interminable train ride.

I love going to this LYS... laughing along with others at jokes like .... "No, I didn't make it, but I could have...."  I love hearing the many stories shared, checking out WIPs, leisurely browsing Annissa's yarn stock, and patterns, and store samples. I was relieved that this Friday the planets aligned and I was up for heading over to hang out with the regulars.

I was tired from two days of having construction crews descend on the house to install insulation. I had to move and pack up lots of my knitting stuff, and by the time Friday evening arrived, I grabbed the closest project and headed out. Once ensconced at the knitter's table, I was not really excited to be working on Gap-Tastic Cowl, the project I brought, so instead, I poked around the shop and checked things out.

GapTastic Cowl

As I wandered and pondered, Diane, a knitter I have met a few times, struck up a conversation. She told me she has just recently started knitting and often feels alone with her questions, challenges, and mistakes. She said.... "I just wish I had a Nana sitting close by for when I get stuck". Boy, do I know how she feels.... Knit Nights are a good replacement, even though you have to wait for the advice....

This evening, she kindly asked for help, and it brought me back to when I was just getting started and had no one to query if things went awry. No Nana sitting nearby, no friends that knit, no knit groups...

Knitting the Easy Way

I told her about Knitting the Easy Way, the book that got me back to knitting. I just happened to find it at Christmas Tree Shop for $4.50, and a hat pattern spurred me to try my hand at knitting in the round. I must have made at least a dozen hats from this pattern and they got better each time.

There were mistakes, and there were times when I ripped things out and had to begin again, but, as I told Diane, each time, I learned something. This book is a good starter book for a beginner with its spiral bound pages, large photos and line drawings, clear directions, and easy to moderately challenging patterns. There are plenty of starter books, I just lucked out finding this one.

So another thing Diane asked was how do knitters store their supplies? Here are a few photos of how I have my work table set up.
Ok, I know.... I have a lot of needles. I know, I know, I KNOW!!!! .....

The collection is mostly from lots I bought on ebay thinking I would use the needles for teaching knitting at school.
Many of my needles were bought for a steal on ebay, the jars are mostly antique bottles years found ago in an old dump across the street from our house.
Antique bottle found in an old dump near our home in Acton, MA.
These needles I bought on ebay, purported to be from France. I don't think so, but still, pretty to look at.
This antique bottle is a precious shade of pink.
In the bottle to the right you can see some of the casein and plastic needles from the ebay lot. I love using them; they warm to my hands and help increase my speed a bit.
The crystal ring holder was a gift my parents brought back from Ireland.
This oval covered container is made from something akin to milk glass. I use it for stitch markers.
This hexagonal jar is also from the milk glass material. The lid is long gone.
Diane commented on the number of WIPs I have going and I tried to justify the volume by telling her that certain projects are great to bring to knit nights. They are usually patterns that are not too complicated, so I can bang out a few inches and still take part in conversations with minimal mistakes. I have more challenging projects that I work on when I know I won't be interrupted, and I usually have at least one sweater underway. I have been trying hard to keep my WIPs to 6 or fewer; this is motivating incentive to finish items so that I can cast on my next hot project.

I joked with Diane, and any of the knitters that were tuned in to our conversation, that you know you are doomed if you find yourself going out to buy more needles because you've got projects on your current set of size 8 circulars, or size 5 DPNs. Slippery slope... welcome to the knitter's pool!


grandmastatus said…
Sounds like a fun time.
I envy your needle collection. I have about 2 jars full, but am always son the lookout for more. Even if I don't knit with straights all the time, I still love the way they look in my room ^_^
Evelyn said…
I think you need to make a postcard from your wonderful photo of your needle stash! Awesome... miss hearing from you, friend. PM me on Ravelry -- I sent you a message eons ago!
Patricia said…
I think the display of needles in the bottles give testament to your creative nature! Lovely...
ewenique said…
the variety of your needles is interesting. which is your favourite material to use?
Erin_in_Boston said…
Hey ewenique.... I have been thinking of posting about this particular topic, but I must say that needle preference varies based on the yarn. Probably, my favorite pair is a set of mock tortoise shell needles that came from one of my ebay lots. Pretty, pliable and they warm up to my hands and my speed seems to increase. What do you like best in the way of needles?
lyndagrace said…
What a neat idea to store your needles in old bottles. I have a bunch of mason jars. I wonder if they would work.
Cleo said…
I collect old bottles myself. I have several that have just been collecting dust, they would be perfect to store needles in. Thanks for the great idea!

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