Do knitters crochet and do crocheters knit? i can really only speak for one crocheter, and let you make your own mind up. But, let me assure you, contrary to some opinion:
THEY ARE NOT THE SAME THING!!!
My arts health interest was expanded to include not only mindful crochet, which I have been doing for myself for even before I have started sharing this with you here, but also mindful knitting. I do also knit, and I have been pondering the difference between these two in-distinguishable (JOKING!) crafts offer in terms of mindful crafting, for me…
Crochet I love. It is big part of my life. It helps me untangle the strings that are my thoughts and by stitching them into the blanket stories that I make, they are somewhat untangled and dealt with. I have a very busy mind, as a reflexologist had told me once, in our very first meeting. I struggle with calming my mind, but this has also kept me going and so far had been of use in terms of problem solving. But, a craft like knitting can be valuable for busy minds, as it is easier to relax whilst engaging in some sort of repetitive activity, which was another excellent point well made at the talk on Saturday at Blacksheep Wools.
So, what is the difference for me?
Why do I crochet? When do I choose to knit? Crochet, I have always said I do for the process, not the finished object – this i have recently realized is not true. I choose colours and patterns that I enjoy looking at, the bright colours that I use can very much help me instantly by just looking at them… I crochet for the doing and engagement and process, because it helps me untangle my mind, but I also crochet for colour, for the visual effect that the finished object has on my mood/ feelings.
Knitting, on the other hand, I get bored with very easily. Never have I been able to finish a bigger project than a hat/ short scarf. There is no pressure when i knit, to do anything other than engage. I choose easy, simple patterns, few favourites that I have. I don’t follow patterns generally (knitting or crochet), but with knitting, I don’t try new stitches/ shapes. It is not what I do. It is not why i knit.
I use knitting almost as a palette cleanser.
I tend to use the most exciting yarn and colours for crochet, I use those that I am unsure about or that have been around for ages, which I do not find of use for my projects… wool gifted, or otherwise found, colours too pale, that sort of thing.
I thought about not explaining the difference because as a reader of a crochet blog, i am presuming that all of you KNOW the difference; however, maybe a few simple distinguishing features for those who are unsure may be helpful:
Crochet is more versatile, there are more stitches, more varied ways of working, more three dimensional, and some people say it grows faster. You use one hook and yarn and out of nothing, out of one stitch, there comes a circle/ spiral or square and you are away.
Knitting uses two stitches. You cast on however many stitches you need and you work with two needles, up and down the rows increasing the size of the object steadily and more regularly. Two stitches, that is all. And a plan is often needed, so in a sense you need to know what you are making before you start. Unlike with crochet, which is a lot more freeform.
Still, my interest in knitting was re-ignited, after the Mindful knitting talk at Blacksheep Wools that i have attended, i bought some new needles from knitpro, mostly to support the great work that i have found out that they are doing in supporting abused women by giving them a job in their factory, supporting education for girls, and helping to rehouse the victims of abuse to start a new life.
And so I do both, KNIT and CROCHET, for different reasons, with different benefits for my wellbeing, both equally imperative to it.