Tuesday, 1 February 2011

Learning to Knit!! By guest blogger Sinead O'Flynn

As in many companies, the company I works for has the traditional yearly, “Secret Santa”. However I work for an Arts University and someone suggested that this year we made our secret Santa gifts instead of buying one. I was a little daunted by this as I’m not from a creative background, but there was a lot of enthusiasm in the office which inspired me to do something I had never done before, I decided to knit a scarf as it would be useful and hopefully pretty!
Living in Waterloo (SW London) I often noticed the local knit shop iKnit  but never really had the courage or season to go in.  I ventured down on a cold evening in November and was warmly greeted by eager knitters sitting around a table in the middle of the shop.  Still obviously a little nervous, the helpful guy who works there advised me on the type of wool and needles to use and gave me some much needed encouragement.  I settled on some beautiful multi coloured welsh wool for my scarf.

I rushed home to start straight away but realised it wasn’t as easy as it looked.  Disappointed by my setback I went on to YouTube.  There are hundreds of tutorials on there which show you how to do many different stitches and techniques.  The ones I found easiest to follow were; How to Knit and Basic Knitting Tips & Techniques and Knitting Tips - Casting off

Every evening I had free I would knit a few lines while watching TV.  I started to really enjoy the experience especially when I could see the scarf taking shape.  It actually got very addictive and I was getting  eager to see the final result.  I found that my knitting skills came to me very quickly and managed to cast off and even created some tassels for the end!!

When it was completed I realised how attached to it I was and found it difficult to wrap it up for someone else.  But I shouldn’t have worried.  When my colleague opened it she was really happy with it, so all the effort was worth it in the end.  Her young daughter has now set her sights on it so it may even be passed on to another generation!
Overall I thoroughly enjoyed the experience and would be interested in doing something a little more complicated next time now that I have some confidence.

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