Thursday, February 15, 2007

communal knitting

bits of scarf

EDIT: I've added tags to the photos in Flickr to show what yarns/ stitches I used. Just click on the images to be taken to their Flickr page.

On tuesday, I went to the London SnB meeting in the basement coffee shop at Piccadilly Waterstone's.

I like talking to other knitters, I love knitflicks (on this saturday) but I'm yet to find a knitting group I go to regularly. I have trouble doing anything "regularly", my routine is too confused. Plus, although I like the feeling of knit-community, I get a lot of that online.

I went to this SnB partly to try out a new group, but also because I wanted to deliver the pieces of scarf I'd been making (pictured). I posted about this project last month. The ladies behind the London SnB are aiming to knit four 200 foot scarves for the Lions in Trafalgar Square, all in aid of cancer research.

I did about 6-7 pieces, all from scraps in my stash. You can't see all of them because I may develop the stitch pattern into designs. My favourite section, however, is a very simple bit of freeform crochet (pictured below) - isn't the blue/green hypnotic? (a bit of kureyon left from my lost hat).

The most amazing thing about this SnB is its size. As in a good 20-30 people, maybe more. I've been to knitting groups where I was the only person to turn up, I'm used to there only being 3 people, maybe 5 if we're lucky. I went in, saw a small table of knitters with a couple of empty seats and even someone I know from a non-knitting context. After I put my bag down I looked up, and realised this was only one of four large tables of knitters. I was surrounded! More people came after me, we extended our table and took over another. I'll try to go back, like iknit (another I keep meaning to try...) they change location every week. But they also change day, which might fit my lack-of-routine.

You can track the scarf's progress at their blog and sponsor it by clicking here. Everyone donating money is entered into a prize draw to win one of the scarves.

crochet bits


Veronique said...

I know what you mean about finding the "right" knitting group. I knitted alone for about 2 years before joining the Spiders! Keep looking :)
Your squares look very nice. Those lions are going to be warm!

sharon said...

I was there on Tuesday too! I find big knitting groups detrimental though... Everyone stuck together when I arrived and it was a bit too inclusive. My and my friend ended up sitting alone on a separate table.

Alice said...

was it you* with hedera?! I so nearly went over to say "ooo I've knitted that"

Specs said...

I would love to find a knitting group like that. One of the things that keeps me away from them is a fear that I'd have to sit there staring at two or three other knitters while they talk about their kids.

And, like you said, I get most of my socialization out of the way online (which sounds a little sad, but suits me and my grad school lifestyle just fine).

michelle said...

i really love the first square? is that just a basketweave knit and purl with 2 colors? it's really cool.

Alice said...

its slipped stitch pattern, you work one colour at a time, slipping stitches where you want to see the other colour - similar to the one I did on these mittens

schrodinger said...

Those dishcloths are cool.

I wish you lots of luck finding the right knitting group, I must have lucked out with mine, first group I joined :)

Love the idea of 200 ft scarves, that's a lot of knitting.

Christy said...

I still need to find a SnB like that...I know they have them in Portland but I have the same "routine" problem.

Pig wot flies said...

Nice work.
I'm very fond of our knitting group here in Cambridge. It's very variable. Sometimes it's three people in a corner of a pub and sometimes it's 17 people taking over half a cafe. All of them lovely.

velmalikevelvet said...

nice bit of freeform. i've been using a lot of kureyon scraps in the freeform piece i'm working on too; very conducive to scrumbling i think.

hope you find a group to your liking.

knittingphilistine said...

I'm with Specs; while in theory, knitting groups sound great and fun, but in reality they would make me feel like I was scheduling in my knitting, which is not what I want out of a hobby and free-time activity. I'll continue my socializing online--it's a nice outlet.

Lauren said...

Hi Alice

I co-run Stitch and Bitch London (I'm Lauren, the one who isn't ginger) and just wanted to say thanks for the mention and also thanks for the cool bits of lion scarf. They are fab. :)

I am glad that you made it along and that you found it to be ok. I always worry that people are not having a good time or feel left out.

To Sharon, who ended up sitting on a seperate table, I wanted to say that I am really sorry you felt like it was a bit too inclusive. That worries me as we really try to get around and chat to everyone and I was a bit busy with Lion Scarf leaflet making this week to come and say hello. We had a load of new knitters there that night too so I feel bad for not getting around.

We really try our hardest to welcome anyone and everyone. We honestly don't have any restrictions at all and try to make sure everyone intermingles. It can get tough when there are so many of us and only two of us running the whole thing.

Best plan is to pull a chair up to an already packed table and jam yourself in, rather than sit on your own.

I promise you that if you give us another chance and jump right in there it will be better.

I do know how hard it is to come along and feel a bit overwhelmed, but the size of the group is a nice thing too. You end up talking to so many different types of people and everyone has something in common to start with.

Thanks for coming along ladies. I really hope to see you again. If not then I hope you find a knitting group. :)

Stitch and Bitch London

emmms said...

I was at the SnB Tuesday too (with Sharon), how weird. We ought to all wear name tags, but with our blog names. Kendra's recommended I Knit, so think I'm going to try out that one next.

Strangely enough, I was going to go to kniflicks but ended up getting attacked with post-moving jitters and spent the weekend running around south London looking for a table. I found a stool instead.

(Dig the slouchy hat, by the way.)

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