Old-fashioned crafts and hobbies are making a comeback, and knitting is one of our favourites.
Knitting is a great way to keep minds and hands busy. It can help relieve stress, lower blood pressure, delay the onset of dementia, and distract from chronic pain. Some people even use knitting to help them quit smoking.
It can also be used to feel more productive while you’re watching TV, and as a mindfulness activity. Working stitch by stich to create socks, a shawl, or a sweater can give you a sense of control and purpose – and if you keep your house cool like I do, it’s good to be wrapped in wool!
Whether you’re a seasoned knitter or novice crocheter, you’ll need patterns, and maybe some tutorials to help you learn new techniques. These are a few of our favourite resources:
Knitting books: We have tons of them at the library, and you’re allowed to copy patterns for personal use. I recommend Socks From The Toe Up by Wendy Johnson. It’s good for beginners but also has advanced patterns. For a good laugh, try the knitting humour books (yes, this is a genre!) by Stephanie Pearl-MPhee.
Creativebug: Our new database for crafters is full of patterns and tutorials, as well as classes on other hobbies, like painting or wreath-making.
Check It Out bags: If you’re looking for a mix of books on knitting or crochet, tell us what interests you and we’ll put together a bag full of materials for you.
Ravelry: Everyone who knits or crochets needs to know about Ravelry. It’s a wondrous free website where you can find thousands of patterns, find out the best yarn to substitute for a project, keep track of what you’re working on, and connect with other people who are interested in the fibre arts. If you’d like to learn more about Ravelry, we’re hosting an introductory program on it next week.
The world of fibre arts is a very big place – I hope you enjoy exploring it!