Posts Tagged ‘girls’

How to Light a Fire Under a Knitter

May 26, 2017

Most of my afternoon knitting sessions with tween girls consist of a lively mix of joke telling, spontaneous singing and dancing, high volume stories of school, sports, and friends, and occasional knitting. I’ll often knit a row or round for every one they knit.

However, this week, I unconsciously threw down the knitting gauntlet (after all, who can knit with a gauntlet?!) and the results were remarkable. A couple of weeks ago, they’d started garter stitch headbands. Because she’d started earlier, Ella was a few inches ahead of Brigid, and I commented that she could probably finish that afternoon. “Do you think I’ll finish today?” asked Brigid. “I doubt it,” I replied.

Boom! The race began. United in their indignation that I’d doubted their abilities and ready for the challenge, their fingers flew. Progress was measured every two or three minutes.

Headband-measure

They helped each other with the decreases and i-cord. Ella was first to bind off.

Headband-bind-off

While she dashed off to change for lacrosse practice, Brigid zipped through the final few inches and sewed the ends together.

“YOU didn’t think we could do it, and we DID!” Delighted in their victory, they agreed to hold still for a photo.

B&E-headbands

They’re so awesome. I never doubted them for a minute!

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Bike Rack Yarn Bomb

May 19, 2017

With all the rain we’ve been having this month, I’d been keeping my fingers crossed that nothing would be falling from the sky during my knitting girls’ field trip to install their yarn bomb. Fortunately, the bike rack that we wrapped was in a shady spot since Mother Nature gifted us a hot (93F, 34C) sunny day.

The first decision was what order to attach the 8 or 10 knitted segments, 7 inch wide rectangles of various lengths. Once each was pinned onto the rack, the installation began.

yarn-bomb-installation

crystal-lake-yarn-bomb

Each segment was stitched onto the rack, then the ends of the segments were connected so the rack was covered in one very long (about 23 feet, 7 meters) tube.

yarn-bomb-install

As always with 10- and 11-year old girls, the conversation was wide ranging and non-stop — mostly about the adventure at hand — and occasionally interspersed with outbreaks of singing!

  • “How long do you think this will stay here?”
  • “I really hope someone doesn’t cut this off or mess with it.”
  • “Is this art?”

The project is part of a city-wide Festival of the Arts, an annual event that usually includes some type of public art creation. This year’s public art is “Hooked on Newton,” a celebration of fiber via knitting, crochet, and (I’ve heard) tapestry that will be installed at a nearby lake. The first official installation is this coming Sunday, but we got permission from the organizers to decorate the bike rack on a week day, so the girls could participate.

They had a blast and were all justifiably proud of their creation.  Me, too.

yarn-bomb-girls

yarn-bomb-bike-rack

 

Nothing like finishing

March 31, 2017

Each Friday, I spend 90 minutes with 7 or 8 fourth grade girls at a nearby after-school program. I’m there to teach knitting, but mostly I just try to keep up with their questions, energy, anxieties, and aspirations.

“Help! I messed up! Oh wait, never mind.”

“I want to knit slippers. How many stitches should I cast on?” Said while holding nothing but a ball of Sugar ‘N Cream cotton yarn and size 7 (mm) needles

“I was going to go on the field trip today but my stomach hurt from worrying, so I decided to come to knitting instead.”

Last week, Lily finished the last couple of inches of a garter stitch scarf, a gift for her aunt who was coming over for dinner. Another knitter volunteered to model. I love her t-shirt — Try And Stop Me — which conveys the fierceness that so many 10-year-old girls possess.

Garter-stitch-scarf

As she carefully folded the scarf and put it into her backpack, Lily wondered aloud, “I hope she likes it. I know she likes these colors but will she like the scarf?”

“How could she not like it?” a fellow Fearless Knitter asked and then confidently answered her own question, “You made it and she loves you.”

So very true.

 

 

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