Overnight, it seems as though Knitting Land is a-buzz with the topic of holiday gifts. Knitters are comparing notes on what they are knitting for whom, how many gifts they are knitting overall, and how long they have left in which to knit them. People are asking advice as to what to knit for their mother-in-law who won't wear handknits or their teenage son who hates "stuff mom makes."
Although I am a lifelong knitter, I have always found this seasonal knitting uproar to be a bit puzzling. I don't knit for the holidays. Or if I do, I knit one special gift and leave it at that. The rest of my friends and family get things on their wish lists--books, DVDs, cookware, digital photo frames--things which do not require seaming up at 3 AM on Christmas morning. However, year after year, you knitters around me produce gorgeous piles of scarves, bags, hats, and gloves, all the while worrying that you won't finish, or trying to discern what to make for that impossible-to-please person on your list. To top it off, you heroic knitters finish knitting all your beautiful gifts on time (mostly). And you enjoy the whole crazy process (mostly).
This totally bemuses me. How do you do it? WHY do you do it?
Now, lest I sound like a Scrooge: I absolutely do knit for others. In fact, for a long time, I couldn't show off samples of my knitting, because I kept giving everything away. My friend Michelle got a pair of Waving Lace Socks (from our Favorite Socks book); my tiny niece Jackie got a pair of teensy sockies (Ann Budd’s Better Than Baby Booties--a free download!); and so on. But during the holidays, I become almost smug in my I-don't-knit-holiday-gifts attitude. (I say "almost" because I really cannot maintain Smug for very long without dissolving into giggles. I mean...Smug. So hard to stay Smug when you are as silly-hearted as I am.)
Therefore, this holiday season, you won't be reading a lot of posts from me about what I am knitting for my nineteen-year-old nephew Michael or my father-in-law Manny. I'll be knitting other things, but when it comes to holiday knitting, I am going to have to let you folks be the stars of the show.
So then, my holiday knitting-star friends: What are you knitting for the holidays? Who are you knitting for--and why? Are you knitting a lot, or just a little? And most important of all: Will you finish in time?
Inquiring minds want to know. You see, since I have no holiday knitting of my own to do, I have to live vicariously off of all of you...
Leave a comment, and give us all a peek at what is in store for your loved ones this holiday season.
Even though I knit only a few gifts a year, when it does come time to knit presents, I’m just like everyone else: I knit them up at the last minute! (Why, why do we do this to ourselves? It’s not as though birthdays or Christmas are a surprise each year. (“Oh, wow, look. Someone suddenly added December 25th to the calendar! It wasn’t there before…oh NO!”) I’ve no time for lace afghans or cabled sweaters, but I still want something that is worthy of the yarn it’s made from. One Skein, by Leigh Radford, has been an ongoing source of salvation for me for quick, thoughtful gift patterns. I once had two days to make a baby gift for a shower, and Leigh’s sweet little Baby Bolero from this book was just the thing.
Of course, you can always purchase One Skein online from us, but why not go see if your local yarn shop has it first? Show your local yarn shop some love: Give them your business.
Sandi Wiseheart is the editor of Knitting Daily. I'm sitting in my new light-filled studio, surrounded by boxes of yarn and fiber and books, oh my. This is the first Real Studio I've ever had! How will I arrange it? I have no idea, so I am poring over CPS Studios magazine for inspiration and advice. (Ahem. OK, that was an utterly shameless plug--but really, it's a great magazine, full of wonderful eye candy, and maybe I'll find some really good tips in there to help keep me organized. Who knows?)