I’ve given a lot of thought in my 5 years as a knitter to the hardly insignificant issue of appreciation. As a knitter it is wonderful to have an appreciative “giftee” around who truly loves receiving knitted loveliness from you. We all have them, and they are often easy to find. However, we also all have people in our lives who put on a badly faked smile while enduring the token try-on and say “wow…this is just what I have always wanted,” while really thinking, “Really? Doesn’t he know that you can buy socks for 2 bucks at Wal-Mart?”
My girlfriend Michelle is a knitter’s dream. She proudly wears and shows off anything that I make for her. She loves that her boyfriend knits cool stuff for her, and that in turn makes me incredibly happy. In this pic she’s wearing a lace scarf that I knit her over the summer and a pair of cabled gloves I designed for her that include conductive thread so that she can use her iPhone without getting her fingers cold. She totally geeked out over both gifts, and that fuels my knitting addiction in joyous ways.
My younger daughter is another one who has shown her appreciation time and time again. Here she’s sporting her Christmas gauntlets that she loves dearly and wears often. She also has a sweater that she rarely is seen without…an item I had knit for her rapidly-growing big sister who outgrew it before it was finished.
I have had some knitting projects go unused by the people for whom they were knit. I still occasionally think about the co-worker who emailed the staff enough pictures to make a grandmother want to vomit, and yet I never once saw the baby blanket that I’d spent 2 months knitting for said baby. Trust me, I was looking. A lot. At every picture she sent.
Now I do understand that hand-knitted garments aren’t for everyone (though in my biased opinion they should be). I don’t stop knitting for “newbies” out of fear that they will never wear the item that I invested my time and energy in. Not all knitwear will be hits, but those that are, like the socks I knit for my friend Georgia, will make it all worthwhile. 2 months later, she’s still raving about those socks.