KNITWITS
By Heather Briggaman

Purls of Truth
Over the past few months, knitting has become a regular topic of conversation at Rossi Studios. Half-finished scarves have been greeted with curious eyes, and favorite techniques have been shared in-between the hecticness of meeting deadlines and responding to the latest influx of emails. It's done what knitting has had the power to do for centuries: connect women with something that's a distinctive part of our creative history. And even the briefest moments of such conversations have allowed us girls to do what we do best: share and discuss.

Patching a Generation Gap
It seems that the crafting craze has made its mark all across the nation. Over the past few years, this knitting revolution has taken the college and career-age crowd by storm. The crafts that we were once content to leave to our grandmothers' worlds are now spanning generations and bringing us together in a unique way. Creativity circles and knitting clubs are becoming more and more common, allowing for the interaction of women from all walks of life, ages, and backgrounds. My personal entrance into the world of knitting has been through one such group. As a small group of four, our knitting circle consists of two twenty-somethings, a career-oriented mom from California, and our 75-year-old teacher, who is younger at heart than I could ever hope to be. We come together each week and share our latest projects, as well as our lives. I've learned about life and love and heartache from these women, and even on the nights when I fail to knit one stitch, I come away a better person.

The Giving Spirit
Every time I talk of knitting, whether here at the studio or amongst my little circle, one common theme comes to the surface: the creations we're working on are rarely made with ourselves in mind. Instead, the holiday season brought countless scarves that were knitted for family members, friends, and "Secret Santa Swaps." In each case, the purpose of the homemade gift (showing love through something handmade) was achieved. A friend, whose recent move to Australia kept her from coming back to the US for the holidays, commented that the scarf made her feel immediately closer to home. "I love knowing that you were the last one to touch it," she said. And so it goes with homemade presents. These creations offer more than just a tangible object. They are gifts from the heart that hold an expression of friendship in every stitch.

Try large needles (I love size 17) and chunky yarn (Jiffy Thick & Quick by Lion Brand is great!) for scarves that offer both a fun look and immediate results. You'll be able to finish an entire project in an afternoon.

Use yarns of variegated colors to create interesting, colorful scarves.

Try using two different yarns and knitting them together at the same time. Just hold them together as if they were one strand of yarn and cast on and knit as you would normally, being sure to pick up both pieces each time. This creates some interesting looks when two very different yarns are used (a "fun fur" with a more traditional worsted weight yarn or a decorative ribbon yarn with a mohair or furry yarn.)

Try using the expensive "fun furs" and mohair yarns more sparingly by adding them only to the fringe or knitted into a few rows on both ends of the scarf.

Sew buttons or sequins onto the ends of the scarf to finish it off in a creative way. Sparkly rhinestones could add a special look to a fancier scarf, making it perfect for a night on the town.

 


 

Rossi Studio Knitters
Allison and Nancy do a little knitting while on their break.

Double Trouble
This scarf was created by knitting two very different kinds of yarns together. It combines a purple mohair with a colorful ribbon yarn.

Knitting Circles
Interested in a new craft? Try joining a knitting circle where you will enjoy the company and experience of other knitters.

Instant Results
Using size 17 needles and thick, chunky yarn makes it possible to create an entire scarf in just an afternoon.

 


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