For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother's womb
Psalm 139:13

Monday, 6 April 2015

In praise of knit clubs and hashtags




For April, I'm joining in with A Playful Day's Love Your Blog Challenge (read about it here). Each week there's a new prompt for your next post, as well as opportunities to share, find fresh inspiration and encourage others. It sounded right up my street and will hopefully help me be more consistent with blogging.

Anyhow, the first prompt was community and interaction. Soooo...

Joining a knitting group is one of the best things I've ever done. A year after graduation, most of our friends had moved away and me and Mr P were working opposing hours. Neither of our families lived nearby. Much as I was so over living in a shared house, it was weird that other people weren't around anymore and I really missed my besties who were far away. Things weren't going to change overnight. I had to just jump in and join stuff. I started going to a local knitting group. 

It turns out knit clubs/ knitting circles/ stitch nights are pretty special. First of all, they're full of knitters. Now I might be biased, but knitters seem to be the most generous, creative and determined of folks. Secondly, knit club is a place where I feel encouraged and challenged, where I can learn and share (and have a cuppa and a natter). I can turn up with my WIP, get a few hours of stitching in and always come away feeling a little bit better about life. Plus last week, with some careful assistance, I totally turned the heel on my first ever sock! Woop! 

And there's any number of places where you could find likeminded peeps, feel encouraged, use your skills to help others and learn new stuff too, depending what your thing is I guess - a sports team, a club, a forum, a choir, a class, Twitter chats, Ravelry and Instagram. With the magic of hashtags, we can share what we're up to and be part of something bigger without even leaving the house. The #bedinburghyarnfest was an awesome lifeline when I was stuck at home doing some deadline stitching. So lovely to connect with other yarny types. 

I think being part of a community is pretty important, and like blogging, it's better when it's a two-way thing. Lately I've been making a real effort to comment on blogs I love to read, and get involved in more things. I'd definitely recommend the #blogtacular and #creativesunite Twitter chats. 

Where do you hang out? 

18 comments:

  1. I miss my knitting group... there just don't seem to be enough hours in the day. You're right knitting groups are special places, there's a huge sense of belonging and sharing. The generosity of knitters can't be underestimated, they share what they know and what they have.

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    1. Knit club is sacred! It's not always easy to find the time though. Sometimes if I've got heaps of knitting to get through I end up staying home so I'm not just chattering! :) x

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  2. I agree whole-heartedly about knitting groups. It's difficult making friends as an adult / non-student. When I moved to a new place, I realized that pretty much all of the friends I've ever made over the years were through school / university / situations where you see people every day and become friends out of familiarity, rather than intention. A knitting group is a way to have it both ways, I think - regular contact and also shared interests/intentions.

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    1. Hi Leah, yes, that was exactly it. Where do you start when there aren't people you see every day? Knit club was brilliant for that - I knew I already had a lot in common with them right from the start. :) x

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  3. I love my knitting group. I've been going for about 18 months now, and the other people there have become really good friends (and a couple of my friends have started coming along too, which makes it all the better as we didn't see each other very much after our old knitting group broke up because no-one could make the day any more). I'm not really into socialising, but it's much easier when I have yarn and needles in my hands!

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    1. I'm with you on that one Sadie. I definitely feel a lot braver armed with my hook or needles – instant conversation starter! :) x

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  4. I wish we had a knitting group where I live. Its not for lack of trying though, but what with keeping up or matching schedules and travel, it just hasn't clicked so far. Hopefully someday.

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    1. It can be difficult to get people together, especially outside big cities. If you're on Twitter, I definitely recommend the Creatives Unite weekly chat/craft time on Thursday evenings. Check out http://teawithmissbeatrix.com/creatives-unite/ there's the same sort of crafty camaraderie you'd find in a knit club. :) x

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  5. I don't have a regular knitting group, but first started to knit on a craft weekend with some friends who were all knitters, and we're planning our third weekend away later this year. It's such a companionable craft, and I think that's the people as much as the craft. I also really enjoyed #bedinburghyarnfest - so much fun on a weekend when I might otherwise have felt a bit sad to be missing out.

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    1. Ooh, a knitty weekend sounds wonderful! Yes, I think you're right Helen, it's the people that make it. I'm going to have a look back at bedinburghyarnfest and see if I can spot your makes :) x

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  6. I enjoy my knitting group. Its so great to meet up with likeminded people regardless of their background or mine. I think thats whats so great about the Love your Blog challenge from A Playful Day as I already feel I'm meeting more people in the same way as the knitting group except this is virtual! X

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    1. Yes Gill! There's always something special about meeting other knitters, whether online or otherwise. This challenge has been great so far for helping me connect more with other creative bloggers :) x

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  7. When staying with a friend I visited her knitting group. A lovely bunch of ladies who were so friendly and welcoming, just a shame I live so far away! Must try and find one which is slightly more local!

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    1. Hi Amy, sounds wonderful - hope you can track one down nearby! :) x

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  8. wonderful post, and I love the idea of a challenge to love your blog more :) you've really hit the nail on the head with how wonderful knitting groups can be, and how important interaction and a sense of community is! congratulations on turning your first heel as well, super :) knitters are brillient (i too am biased, but hey ho thats ok! :) )
    jenny xx

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    1. Thanks! With help from fellow knitters, turns out socks aren't so scary! Debut sock is a bit wobbly, but definitely a sock! :) x

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  9. I would love to join a knitting group. I have been scouting out a group at my LYS and hope to link up with them. I need a few people who will understand my love of yarn and pointy sticks!

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    1. We yarn fanciers are a pretty special breed! Hope you can get stuck in at your LYS group! :) x

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penny for your thoughts . . .

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