Lion Brand Notebook

News, Ideas and Information for Crafting with Yarn

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How Knitting and Crocheting Makes Us Better

January 26th, 2010

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We were overwhelmed by the impact crocheting and knitting has had on your lives. It has helped us relax, express ourselves creatively, connect with others, deal with grief, recover from health problems, give back to the community, and more. Because we loved your comments so much, we selected 5 of our favorites, and then we randomly selected a winner from there. Here are our top 5:

Jessica writes: Knitting and crocheting makes me better, I realized when my 3-year-old baby was diagnosed with leukemia this summer. I sat in the corner of the hospital room learning to knit quietly hoping to be invisible so to avoid nurses and visitors questioning me or trying to make polite conversation. On the contrary (and surprisingly!) it sparked MORE questions and conversations. Nurses wanted to know what I was working on and came close to inspect my progress. It became an ice-breaker and though many, many tears were shed, I found that I did need others support and having that knit project in my hands gave me a reason to connect with people when I much rather would’ve crawled under the bed and disappeared.

Kathy writes: How could knitting or crocheting NOT make us better people? We live in our self-created society of “STRESS.” We push ourselves and push ourselves. We all need to relax but how many of us would not have any relaxation if we didn’t have our needles or hooks in our hands? It forces us to sit down, whether in front of the TV, traveling, or listening to audio books (my favorite), so we can get some “rest.” I work in the health care arena – very stressful – no opportunity to create something of beauty and at the end of my day, I need to rest my mind as much as my body. But many of us need to be doing “something” besides vegetate and so we get out our yarn and practice our craft. I think all of us who knit or crochet have an artist within us – that need to create, to make a statement, to give gifts, etc. I have given away everything that I have created. Perhaps it is a way to leave a part of myself behind so someone will pick up an afghan, a sweater, and remember me and the love I put into making it.

Sue writes: Knitting makes me better because it forces me to stop. Stop emailing, stop doing laundry, just simply STOP … and sit, and relax, and drink warm tea, and look out the window at the world … and take a precious hour or two where I just focus on counting stitches, rows, knitting up yarn and starting the next new ball. When I’m knitting I see my achievement grow. I’m busy … but I’m not the constant, fighting, struggling kind of busy that is the life of many Moms. I’m busy growing a very special unique project that knits a little piece of me into every stitch.

Personna writes: Crocheting has taught me that I DO have patience and a creative eye, that I CAN find a way to calm down and relax, and what’s even better is that the people I make things for know how much they’re loved just by receiving something that I’ve made for them. Crocheting makes me better because I’ve learned that if I can make a cardigan and socks from string, I can do ANYTHING I set my mind to. I’ve even decided to try my hand at DESIGNING crochet.

Deb writes: Crocheting makes me better because I can say ‘I love and value you’ without saying a word. It is all intricately woven into the thread or yarn of the gift I have given to you dear and beloved friend (or family)!

Jessica’s entry was randomly chosen as the winner. Congratulations, Jessica, and thank you to everyone for sharing how knitting and crocheting impact your life.

  • Janis P

    I won’t go on a trip without a hook, yarn and a book. Even if it turns out I’m too busy to touch it, it’s like my security blanket. I need to know it’s with me. I crochet for charity by it’s really for my own sanity. I walk into my craft room (belonged to a succession of kids – 5 – over the years and now it belongs to me) and I feel instantly calmed. I have my yarn stacked up so I can see it as I walk in. I have some very stressful days at work and in the middle of the day I can just think about the latest project I’m working on or start planning the next one and I feel rejuvenated – so I’m hooked like evryone else.

  • Beth

    Knitting and crocheting are the most relaxing thing I do. I used to love to read, but found that I cannot sit in the same room with my husband while he watches TV and I read, its too distracting. I can, however, sit in the same room with him while he watches TV and I knit or crochet, I can talk with him and listen to the TV all at the same time. My husband does know, though, that when I am counting, if he asks me a question, and I reply with a number, to give me a second or two and I answer his question. I love knitting and crocheting more than anything and look forward to getting off work and get started on what I’m working on.

  • http://www.blogaroony.blogspot.com Laura

    All such wonderful entries and so uplifting.

    I also want to take this opportunity to compliment Lion Brand for being such an outstanding leader in the world of crafts…..your kindness to all knitters and crocheters continues to amaze me. Thank you for providing so many free (and lovely) patterns. I look forward to The Weekly Stitch which never fails to have something I like!

  • Tara of Palo Alto

    Wow you all have really touched me…I thought I was the only one who started making things for my grandchildren that are not even conceived yet! Or that my prayers and love goes into every stitch Or that goes no where without my yarn My sons call me a “yarnaholic” after reading all these posts I cried because I realized after being so alone for so long there are people out there just like me who love to make something useful out of “string” who are creative and want to feel like they are worth something. I have diabetes and my husband left me with the kids after 25 years of marriage and I have no family all I have are my sons and my beautiful black lab Cali Rose and my yarn. Walking my dog, crocheting soothes my soul and calms my nerves and gives me peace. Thanks for such meaningful thoughts and warmth I really needed to connect with other people It gives me hope to go on another day.

  • Christie Olson

    So many different types of letter so rewarding. A bit saddness to though. I have been crocheting for many, many years, my 94 yeaar old grandmother taught me whom has since passed. The gifts ase so wonderful and the love you put into them so rewarding. Love that Lions has done this so we can see what other all over are doing with ther talent of either crocheting or knitting. I know both but prefer crocheting. to all whom have not yet started it is very rewarding,to all whom recieve these special gifts. To all that are ill and taken this up I will pray for you and hope this is what the lord intended, to help you thru the tought time. Keep the projects coming Lions company.. Christie

  • Christine Lepore

    Happiness is finding out from a friend, that the baby blanket I made as a shower gift sixteen years ago for our other mutual friend, is beautiful and loved all these years. Giving truly does come back to you when you need it the most.

  • Cheryl

    I read the comments on how crocheting and knitting makes our lives better…loved the notes and agreed with them all…knit and crochet were taught to me by my two grandmothers, and I not only still possess many of the items they made for me, but also enjoy being able to leave heirlooms for the family as it grows…I was taught to knit at age 4 and hope to pass on the skills to my grandchildren. Anyone who has made a handmade project can attest to the fact that it brings a great sense of accomplishment and satisfaction, and the process is very soothing to the soul. We can knit and crochet when other activities become too challenging. I have resumed my projects, now that life is allowing me the time again, and I appreciate coming back to it. It helps pass the time on planes and in waiting rooms, and I can take my projects anywhere to work on when I have a free minute. I don’t know how I went through all the years that I laid down my knitting needles…I am glad to still have the pattern books from my grandmother and am rediscovering some of the patterns she made for me. Such joy…such fun…such memories.

  • Maria

    My 5 year old son was diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder at 2 years old. Knitting has helped me tremendously with aleviating the stress and worry that autism causes everyday. And while it helps me with my stress, I also get to create beautiful sweaters for my son to wear.

  • Sharon

    One of your readers just hit the nail on the head by saying when you make something for someone, you are telling them how much they are loved, and thought of. i really never had thought about it, but i am always with a knitting or crochet project, and yes it makes you take time for you, thank you for bringing this to my attention.

  • charo rump

    knitting makes me happy because I can give something that I made with love to a friend, family, child. In a world where you can get anything you want, a handmade item made with love is very much appreciated, when I give or receive something made, it warms my heart because it tells me someone loves and cares!

  • endah

    I’m very glad to share my experience here. I knew about crochet when I was in junior secondary school. My aunt taught me how to make a chain. Only that simple step made my curiosity turned out. I was being amused by that new activity and tried next steps so that ‘a thing’ can be made. Table cloth and bag are two kinds of thing that I’ve made though I think it still so far from perfectness. Now, I try making something better, not only for myself but for else. It will make it worthier. That’s what I’ve studied from this activities, beside exercise to be more creative and patient. And, I think we all agree, there is unpainted satisfaction when our project on crochet or knit have been finished successfully.

  • Eileen Moore

    I have knitting for about 30 years! I was taught to knit at the early age of 18 years old and I am so glad I did. I have been unemployed almost 2 years now, and I find comfort in knitting and crocheting. I also love to cross-stitch. I love making crafts so much, my friends are interested in it now. I is a wonderful stress-reducer and it brings peace to your mind, body and soul.

  • http://dpughbubba@aol.com Deloris Pugh

    I have enjoyed reading How “Crocheting and knitting make me better”. Kathy wrote that she gives away everything she makes. I do the same. I have given away everything I have made. I enjoy taking string, thread or yarn and make it into something of beauty. I enjoy crocheting it is my let go time.

  • Denise Plank

    I am amazed and awed by the comments left here. I learned to crochet from my grandmother, learned the basics of knitting from my Mom, and a dear friend taught me more about knitting and how to cable. That was it–I found the craft that I love! I was brought to tears by Sue’s entry–I’m glad that you chose it as a finalist–as it stated completely why I knit and what I derive from it. I am in my last semester of college (as a career-change student) in the Bachelors of Science in Nursing program and find that I am stressed to the max, just trying to finish the tasks at hand. As time for knitting is very limited right now, I am promising myself many hours of knitting beginning the day after graduation (May 1st)!! I am also very thankful for the Lion Brand website, free patterns, and great yarns for knitters and crocheters. And, I am looking forward to “knitting my fingers off”!!

  • Grandma Dorothy

    I’ll say a prayer for Jessica and her child…just let her know that miracles do happen…we’ve had several in the past few years in our family…I would have never believed it could have happen but it did…you have to believe…

  • Karen Edgecombe

    I learned to knit from my mother when I was 8 years old, and taught myself to crochet at the age of 18. I am now 63, and have never stopped. It has gotten me through the death of my third child at the age of 15, and through the quadruple bypass heart surgery of my husband. Sometimes all I could do was knit. I have made baby blankets, hats, sweaters, full-size afghans, Linus Project blankets, chemo hats, babies in need booties, hats, blankets, and Comfort Shawls. There is always something going, and I hope it never stops.

  • ANGIE

    I LOVE READING THE STORIES AND THE RESPONSES. I HAVE MISSED KNITTING AND CROCHETING THESE LAST MONTHS WHILE LIVING HAS MADE MANY CHANGES IN MY LIFE BUT I KNOW IN A FEW MONTHS I WILL BE BACK ENJOYING IT AGAIN. I AM ALSO IN THE HEALTHCARE INDUSTRY (YES, INDUSTRY) IT IS A BUSINESS AND NOW MORE THAN EVER STRESS HAS BECOME WORSE, THE BOTTOM LINE IS ALL WE HEAR ABOUT NOW!!!! SO I NEED TO GET BACK TO CREATING AND GIVING AGAIN AND KNITTING AND CROCHETING WILL HELP SOON.

  • Gail

    These stories are so wonderful. They really inspire me to value my crocheting. Often, I feel ashamed because of my huge “stash” of yarn. I am not very organized with it, although I do try to keep it confined to one area of the house.
    I have crocheted since about 1971 when a male friend showed me the basics and said that he enjoyed crocheting for relaxation. I will always be grateful to him. It has brought me so much pleasure over the years. I do it while watching tv or just about any other time I am “sitting”. I do
    give most of it to friends, family and charity.
    I am now 67 years old, and plan to crochet for as long as I am able to hold a hook ! Thanks to all who shared their stories. Many blessings to every one of you.

  • Dawn

    I learned from my grandmother how to crochet & knit when I was 8-9 yrs old; I would bring my projects to school and when I was finished w/my classwork, break out my project & sit quiet in class working on them. I too, took a hiatus from crocheting & knitting as a teenager – long into my 30′s… my grandmother passed away @ 92, and had made my oldest child who was a preemie, a “woobie”… a small blanket for her car seat that wouldn’t overpower her tiny little body… she said she would make a larger blanket for her “later-on”, but that was not to be… as the family was cleaning out her things, we discovered the larger woobie half finished, with many mistakes as G-mom’s mind & fingers failed with time… no one wanted to take it apart – so after a 30 yr hiatus – I remembered the stitches & completed the woobie, for my 2nd child… I’ve made several others since then & have requests from teachers & friends and police officers to make small “woobies” to carry in their patrol cars just in case of an emergency… I have since passed on the skills to my oldest child, and to my Girl Scout Troops, so that the practice will hopefully – live on….

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  • Kay Smith

    My great -Aunt taught me to crochet many years ago when i was about 10 or 12. Since then I have done a lot of Crocheting and Knitting. Every time I crochet I am reminded of her. I relaxes me to sit and crochet or knit.I make many afaghans and such. I love it.

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