Craft shaming during the COVID catastrophe
I would suggest that you try to remember what you used to do when you were around the age of 9 that you really liked doing. I was really, really into drawing, when I was a kid, and then I stopped because other people were better. A lot of people can point to the moment they stopped creating and if you figure out what happened right before you stopped, it was usually a moment of shame.
Somebody said that you had a bad voice, somebody said that you were a stupid dancer. But up until somebody informed you that you needed to be ashamed of it, you really liked doing it.– Elizabeth Gilbert
Firstly, I don’t know what’s wrong with the cats today, they are really bugging me. It seems everybody has to be up against my elbow when I’m trying to type. Usually if they’re this close to each other, someone is trying to slap somebody else. But today they’re even putting up with EACH OTHER. So you know things are bad.
The above quote from wise woman, Elizabeth Gilbert, is part of a discussion on coping and creativity during the pandemic. It reminded me that I haven’t been doing as much ‘coping’ as I used to. I fell into knitting a few years back when I was trying to take a social media break, and I fell hard. I went from ‘who the hell would ever want to knit a shawl, ffs’ to owning about 20 handmade shawls in 4 years.
Maybe it took me more years than that, I didn’t count.
Sidebar: actually, I think it took less.
Then I tried to get into ‘serious’ knitting (because I already owned so many freaking shawls by then). You know. Sweaters. But sweaters bored me. There’s a distinct divide between what I can knit and what looks good on my body, I discovered pretty rapidly.
Also, there’s just SO MUCH knitting that goes into a sweater. And measuring. I hate the measuring. You actually have to get off the couch to do the measuring, and the cats hate when I interrupt their naps like that.
I’ve just realised I’ve spent so long on USian knitting sites that I’m saying ‘sweaters’ instead of jumpers. Good thing Australians are multi-lingual. We understand all kinds of English.
Anyhow, today I completely screwed up the collar of my new sweater – jumper – that I’m knitting, and I don’t even care. People say Australia is too hot for worsted weight jumpers, but don’t believe them. Just get a worsted yarn with loft, so it stands off your body and creates a cosy warm gap between you and your jumper, and presto. You, too, can craft your way through a pandemic.
Pattern: Ash, by Pam Allen. Recommended!
Yarn: Quince & Co Owl, Worsted/10 ply, 50% wool + 50% alpaca.
Conclusion: about to start a new sweater. Jumper. Actually a cardy. Whatever.
Thursday 16 July, 2020