Thursday, 30 October 2008


Way back in the mists of time, when I hoped to know knitting, I probably read some articles by Elizabeth Zimmermann. I bought a lot of knitting magazines back then. Though I was deeply inspired by all I found, but I was not ready to understand. I got lost along the way and only now, when I most needed salvation did I discover knitting and Elizabeth Zimmermann.

I love her no nonsense approach. I love that she encourages you to make knitting come not just from your hands and a pattern on a page, but from your head and your heart. I love that she wants us, teaches us to take ownership of our knitting, to walk away from what we did yesterday and learn and explore what else there is. I am completely overcome by her sense of the adventure of knitting, by her exploration of simple things that in the end, make grand statements.

Her way of looking at knitting suits the kind life I am trying to build. Sensible, simple, unburdened by the excess of modern living, by the demands and overload of technology. Like Elizabeth and knitting, I'll keep and use the sensible stuff like the Internet and a good postal service, but I am in charge of my connection to the world, technology isn't in charge of me. No running off to get the latest 'i' thingy just because it is out there. I'm looking for balance and harmony with the air and water and land. Elizabeth inspires me to take ownership not just of my knitting but of my approach to life.

I already had the Knitters Almanac and Knitting Workshop and learned much. I craved more, so I ordered the rest of her books from the store, and today I am the proud owner of Knitting Around, The Opinionated Knitter and Knitting Without Tears.

I am not going to review them. No way will I ever know enough to do that. I will be inspired by them, will continue to explore my knitting and my life in these books. I don't think I've even scratched the surface of the wisdom within.

Elizabeth Zimmermann started out just trying to change the way people looked at knitting. What she ended up doing was changing the way people looked at life.

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