The Eclectic, Right-Brained Knitter

How many people do you know who would check out In Search of Schrodinger’s Cat (quantum physics), The Mole People (sociological study of people who live under New York City), The History of Puppetry, Voices (book in the sci-fi Babylon 5 series), Ian Fleming: The Man Behind James Bond, Marionettes and How To Make Them, and the DVDs of Miss Congeniality 2, The Sound of Music, Ratatouille, and Hotel Rwanda – all at the same time? This is what happens to a right-brained person – me – when let loose in a library. Actually, I have six more books checked out that are mostly on black holes, quantum mechanics, and puppetry – my current interests.

Not a knitting book in the bunch! Or is there? Actually, a closer look at how my right-brain works will give glimpses into my knitting world. The most logical – at least to me – are the puppetry books. I have been knitting and crocheting puppets for several years now and have become increasingly interested in techniques I can use to create puppets that are not made of
wood, plasticine, fake fur fabric, or other such materials. Nope, I make puppets with two sticks and some string (or one hook and some string, as the case may be). Looking through books on making puppets using these other techniques has helped me hone my knitted puppetry skills. My
puppet heads are now a wealth of short rows, decreases, increases, and lace holes as I create them from start to finish in one piece. Hence, the study of puppetry.

Okay, let’s move down the line of subjects to a bit more obscure connection to knitting – science fiction (including the real science of black holes). I am a huge fan of the Milky Way. I live in the country where smog is not an issue and the night sky is so, so close. While reading such books, I got to thinking about how to recreate the Milky Way through knitting. First, I would need a
sparkly yarn and the shops just didn’t have what I wanted. So I decided to spin my own. What a revelation! This stuff is not easy to spin! There are all kinds of tricks to spinning with Angelina and Firestar. I tried this and that until I found the best ways to incorporate these glowing fibers into my spinning fibers and voila! My “Spinning The Sun, The Moon, and The Stars” class was born and I now have plenty of star-filled yarns to use in projects.

The right-brained person can zoom in on a new interest in a nano-second or less. That is my greatest joy while being my most dire nemesis. I love learning about new topics. I also tend to drop my current projects in favor of the newer, more exciting one – until the next bit of “new” whisks me off in another direction. I have learned to enjoy the ride, knowing that eventually the old will seem new again and I will be back to finish projects with even more enthusiasm than the first time around. There are topics, however, that pique my interest to such an intense level that they stay on for a long, long time. These are my knitting “comfort food” and are usually the basis for my books and my classes. It is all about thinking out of the box, or in my case, asking “What box?”.

Get ready – October is (and, no, I am not making this up) National Right-Brained People Month! Will you be celebrating with me?

I’m Still Here!

I’ve been busy since getting back from Chicago. The woven scarf has not been done because just as I was about to warp the loom, a friend said, “why don’t you knit it this way?” It was such a good idea that I stopped to think about it and it has not had any forward momentum since.

In the meantime, I have worked on my puppets – details in the Knit Puppets and More blog – http://www.knitpuppets.wordpress.com. And, I have finally gotten back to my spinning wheel. Gale Evans – http://www.galesart.blogspot.com – gave me some beautiful silk roving she had dyed to spin and that is what is on the wheel now. I have so many spinning projects to do that my wheel should keep me busy for awhile.

UFOs: YIKES! I have been organizing – yes, still – my studio and have found about a bazillion UFOs! These are now being placed in specially designated tubs so I can work through them methodically. I made myself stop and think why each of them is still a UFO. I found some that simply got put aside when a more pressing project came to the fore. The ones that bother me, though, are the ones that got side-tracked because I showed the project to someone who said something like: “If I were doing it, I wouldn’t use that yarn-stitch-needle size – whatever.” or “Instead of doing it that way, why not do it like this?” And then the project stopped, not because I was thinking how to incorporate the suggestions into my piece, but because I lost confidence in my original idea, even though I thought it was a good one. I didn’t want to continue with MY idea, because I thought it might offend the suggestor. Okay, I need to get over myself! If I have an idea I think is good, I need to simply say, “Thank you for sharing” to the other person and carry on doing what I was doing to begin with. Sometimes people have good suggestions, but sometimes it is not what I want. So now there is another decision: do I not show my projects to anyone until they are finished or do I learn to say “thanks for sharing”. Or both. I think I need to get a thicker skin and stop worrying about others if I think my idea is a good one to begin with. Easier said than done.

In the meantime, I will continue chipping away at my UFO pile. Do y’all have this big of a UFO pile? I mean, seriously, there have to be more than 20 UFOs I have found “so far”. Let me know how big your UFO pile is.