Friday, November 28, 2008

Haven't posted in ages, but had to braindump this.

Thanksgiving (yesterday) I'm knitting away on a present for the sea-slug-aka-E.D.-the-nephew. Friend comes over, looks at what I'm doing, I tell him it's a geeky knit **** **** for my baby nephew. "Well, that's not quite accurate," he says. "It really should be more drapey fabric. Couldn't you just go buy one?"

Craft:zine recently had an article[1] warning all of us crafters about people like these. You knit them a hat for a present. They look at you oddly and sort of say thank you, but look disappointed. "Oh," you say. "I knit them a hat. They must not like hats. I will knit them gloves - they will love gloves!" and you knit them gloves. They look at you oddly and sort of say thank you, but look disappointed. Rinse-repeat ad nauseum.

...there are two kinds of people in the world: the knit-worthy and the hopelessly knit-immune...The knit-immune are exactly who we want especially to knit things for. Knitters feel sadness for these folk, and in our hearts we're all on a conversion mission: we don't want everyone to knit, but we do want them all to respect it.[1]

You can remove "knit" and put in baked goods. Hand-sewn blankets. Homemade soap, cards, papercraft, toys - you name it. I want these people to understand it's not the same. I'm not making this gift to save some money. I've actually spent less money on a t-shirt for the baby. The time and energy spent making something special and unique is the important part. Instead of a piece of fabric made and sewn by some unknown hand possibly in another country I've spent hours looping yarn over needles, each time thinking about how cute he'll look in his final gift. Some people will never get that, and for them - well, there's Target.

[1] Pearl-McPhee, Stephanie. "To Knit or Not." Craft 9 (2008): 62.

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