Friday, March 5, 2010

My Mom, the Knitter?

When I told my mom last October that I had signed up for a beginner's knitting class, I swear she moaned and said, "Oh no!!"

Growing up, my mom was pretty crafty. She would crochet blankets and cross stitch. I remember watching what she was doing and being entranced by how quickly her fingers would move while crocheting. It was mesmerizing!

I don't remember how old I was when she starting teaching me crafts, but I'm sure that it was more of a way to keep me out of her hair while she was working on her things. I know from experience now that it is a little bothersome to have your concentration broken constantly by someone saying, "HEY!" while pulling on a sleeve or pant leg.

For whatever reason, Mom taught me how to use the needle and yarn to make little boxes with the plastic canvas. Once I mastered that, we moved on to crochet. Of course, I never finished anything, I just made rows and rows and rows of double crochets and then pulled it out when I ran out of yarn. I was just happy to be sitting next to Mom, hook in hand, looking busy!

The next craft to be taught was cross stitch. Cross stitch was THE CRAFT for me for the longest time! I have a few framed pieces in my house and have given away my share of kitchen towels and baby bibs. And I have quite a stash of Aida cloth, kits and patterns waiting patiently to be worked.

I had a brief stint with stamping in the early 2000's before moving onto quilting. Mom did the stamping with me, but I dropped it like a hot potato as soon as I found a shop that taught quilting classes for a reasonable amount. Mom didn't have an interest in quilting until she saw the quilts and things that I was working on. (In her defense, I didn't take up quilting until after they moved to Florida.)

Right around the time that my parents moved to Florida, I found out that Mom had attempted knitting. Once. Only one time! And it was a baby blanket that she started for me! I didn't let her lack of enthusiasm for knitting dissuade me from taking the classes. And once I learned the basic stitches, I LOVE knitting.

After the first class, I found the blanket that Mom made and I took it to the class to show off. The teacher said that she did great work and was shocked that Mom didn't continue knitting. She thought Mom was a natural!


Heck, even I started small with dishcloths!! I think that Mom was very ambitious with her blanket for me! Even if it did take her more than 20 years to finish it!

Thanks, Mom, for sharing your love of crafting with me!


quiltin cntrygrl said...

It looks great I love the color. I think I am going to try to make a dish cloth this week... Something to keep me busy.

craftyrad said...

I did a double-take when I saw the blanket -- I've done the same stitch in green and other colors many times. Nice work!

Regina said...

My mom knit - but I never picked it up. Sister Sue sewed -and I did that for a while - then got away from it - then picked it up again. Then she taught me to quilt! Oh boy....

Mom said...

OMG who knew I created this monster!!!!!!! The only credit I can maybe take is sparking your interest in crafts. As is evident by the afghan I made for you, finishing is not my strong suit. Your initiative and enthusiasm must come from your Dad's side of the family. But your talent is all your own. You take care in all you do, cooking, quilting, knitting and your job. And you finish more in a week than I finished in my entire life. It's not only beautiful artistically, but also technically. You make me proud, GO. We love you.

Brenda said...

This was a cool post - both the story of how your passion started with being the creative you you are, and how your mother taught you and let you craft along with her (my weakness - I did not teach my kids.....) And I love your mom's answer!!!! Love this post. Thanks for the smiles!!

Babs said...

Awesome story!! I love family history-type stories :)


Michelle said...

What a neat blanket. Have you had it with you always? I loved this post, and I loved the comments your mom made. You must feel very loved.

When I was probably about 12, my mom, my two older brothers and I used it sit on the couch watching Johnny Carson just doing the basic knitting stitches (although I did learn how to purl). I don't think any of us finished anything, but we kept our fingers busy. I remember how tight our first rows were. Funny...I think we kept our yarn and needles in a cardboard oatmeal container with a hole cut in the lid, and while we were knitting, the container kept the yarn from rolling away or getting tangled up.

Be blessed,

zarina said...

that is a beautiful blanket. I too was fortunate that my mum was a crafter too - unfortunately when I was old enough, she stopped crafting but was good in the kitchen (which my sister took up and not me). she did helped my by buying craft books, materials, helping out on difficult skills such as flipping the double stitch in tatting. i was like you where I did not finish any knitting/crochet pieces but I did a few cross stitched projects which was framed. other than that, only quilting was something which I managed to produce projects.

Laura said...

That is so great that you can share all of this with your mom. My mom had no needlework skills, but one of her sisters did and it was she that taught me to crochet among other things. She ended up taking up cross-stitch and quilting after I did so we've shared common hobbies for many years now. And yes, I have a huge cross-stitch stash too!

InfinityQuilter/Knitter said...

What a cute blanket! My mom and particularly my grandma were crafty too. I remember them taking along to craft sales all the time when I was little to sell their "stuff". The little dioramas in baby food jars, macrame plant holders, bead candy canes, etc. Brings back fond memories!