Today I had a minor medical emergency and spent almost two hours in the doctors' office. Knowing before I left how long the wait might be, I took my knitting. I am an almost compulsive knitter at times (some obsessive tendencies, here) and have been seen knitting everywhere. There's been a bit of a hiatus, and I felt the need to take back up my needles.
So I sat and sat and knit and knit and in walks this woman. Her beret was nearly horizontal on the side of her head, and I thought; 'Now THAT's a jaunty angle!' She's one of the types of people most of us avoid eye contact with. She stands in the middle of the waiting room and asks, 'Would anyone like a glass of water?' I politely decline, but undeterred, this offer was made to each new-comer to the room.
Then, from her capacious bag she pulls out crocheting and sets to work, just like me. How strange it struck me. You just don't often see needle work of any kind in public anymore, and here we were two kindred spirits, with very little else in common.
From across the room she nodded at my lap and enquired, 'Scarf?' I replied, 'No, slippers.' She worked quietly for the rest of my wait, only pausing to offer liquid refreshment.
And in my rambling way, this brings me to my current bedtime reading. I must now confess that despite the amount of time I've spent over the years working on my knitting, I am only consistently successful with flat, rectangular projects. Washers, dishcloths, scarves, wraps, coasters and hot pads. I churn them out. And they are wonderful, but I am longing to make more things that are shaped properly, you know, with armholes.
So, like a kid unable to ride a two wheeler who spends hours watching motorbike races, I read knitting books. I lust after the patterns and the photos, and imagine myself wearing something that makes people say, 'That's really lovely!' instead of, 'Did you make that yourself?'
Weekend Knitting by Melanie Falick has projects that look simple enough for me. They are trendy, colourful, cheerful and small.
Amanda Griffiths' Luxury Knits has beautiful, classic designs, but they look way out of my league. I read some reviews on Amazon that said one of her books had lots of errata, too. So for me this is a definite 'dream' book.
But my favourite in the stack is Greetings from the Knit Café by Suzan Mischer. It's so cheerful and bright, with a large variety of patterns. Baby, adult, simple, elaborate, large and small, they are all here, even flat ones! You can knit for a person or your home with this book. It also has recipes, music suggestions and the history of the Knit Café, an actual place in West Hollywood, apparently. The models are real customers and the book has a scrapbook style that is very appealing. This is a great book for lusting over.
Am I the only one who reads about projects she'll never accomplish, or does anyone do something similar? What's your favourite fantasy DIY publication?
And, by the way, I never worked out where that glass of water was going to come from…