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Knitting - Get Creative

By Ashleylister @ashleylister

When I was a very small gril, my Auntie Effie would come to visit and sit while mom and dad had a well earned night off. She always came with a bag of yarn and knitting needles, sometimes with beads too. She was a well seasonned kniiter, I would sit watching in wonder as she designed and kniited fabulous bespoke outfits for my collection of dolls. 

Barbie, Midge and Sindy would soon be decked out in stunning dresses and hats in bright colours. Pink and black a-line stipres, lemon and white with looped hems and one in particular, a smart green suit with gold beads kniited through the skirt and round the neck of the jacket. She was so wonderfully creative. 

When I asked her to teach me to knit, there was a technical problem. Auntie effie was left handed - unlike me. To her credit she persevered with me and soon I was knitting and I even managed to tuck one needle under my armpit, as she did. It was a technique that helped me knit more quickly, The way she taught me to pass the wool in and out of my fingers heled me keep a steady tension. She turned me into a great knitter and being a child who rarely sat still, the respit it gave to my parents was very welcome. 

In my teens and early twenties I kniited for myself. I chose complex and unusual patterns and my sweaters were a bit of a talking point among my group of friends. "Is that one of yours?" they would ask. I was always proud to respond in the affirmative. I was always buying new wool and there was usually a sweater on the go. 

When I was pregnant with my son, I embarked on a new project: a full layette. A jumpsit with zip front in white with pale blue and pale green flecks. A sweater, pants with shoulder straps and a matching hat. I tried very hard to knit booties but fell short with every attempt. I needed a lesson or two from Effie but by then she had passed. 

I actually started kniting the jumpsuit in hospital after he was born. All the other mums were amazed at how quickly it was completed. I took him home wearing it. 

My dad's niece kniited and as Matthew grew she made him two gorgeous aran jumpers, one cableknit and one red and cream striped. They were treasures. I think I still have them in a drawer somewhere.

I began knitting his christening shawl and struggled to support the sheer weight of it as my baby bump grew bigger. I machined white satin ribbon all around the edges and now it is a family hierloom. I was so proud of my achievements. I also made him a Sam the Scarecrow - he loved it until he wore it out. 

Over the years I have kniited baby bankets, teddies and beanie hats for nephew's babies. There is nothing better than giving someone a gift that they cannot buy in a shop.  I haven't knitted for a long while but my daughter tells me that her friend is expecting. Her nana used to knit but she passed recently so I suppose it's time to get out the patterns, kneedles and yarn. It's time to get knitting. 

Knitting - get creative

Auntie Effie
She knitted cack-handed but her patience prevailedshe taught me a craftthat would keep me sane. When deep in depressionI picked up my yarnand click-click-clickedmy way back again.  
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