Sunday, June 24, 2007

Schism

First of all, I just have to say what an utterly, utterly, fabulously brilliant and spiffing season finale we're having in Doctor Who. A great big meaty three-parter you can really get your teeth into. And what about John Simm, eh? It would be very easy for him to teeter over the edge and turn into a pantomime villain, but he keeps it just this side of parody. I knew he was good from Life on Mars, but this is a whole different performance. And you have to love a villain who can use the word "decimate" correctly...

Sigh.

What I was going to talk about, before I got side-tracked by the end of the world, was the unreasonable dislike some knitters have for crocheters, and vice versa. I have, in the past, had complaints about my knitting patterns, because they use small amounts of crochet. I was quite surprised by this, and even more so when I did some Googling. I found that there is a sizeable number of knitters who seem to regard crochet as simplistic and inferior, and only done by those who can't cope with knitting.

Not only this, but there is also a vocal section of crocheters who can't see the point of knitting, who think it's ugly and unwieldy and completely incapable of producing the beautiful pieces which can come from a crochet hook.

I have been able both to crochet and to knit for almost as long as I can remember. I picked up crochet much more quickly, and found that I could work it considerably faster than I could knit. But even at that age I could see that each had their own strengths and weaknesses, and that - quite often - these complemented each other. A crocheted edging could lift a knitted piece, and could be worked much more easily than a similar edging done with knitting needles. On the other hand, crochet takes up about 33% more yarn than the equivalent knitted item.

Both knitting and crochet have been responsible for some of the most garish and eye-melting fashion faux-pas (do I need to mention the 70s?). On the other hand, we have Shetland shawls knitted so fine that they can be drawn through a wedding ring, and Irish crochet wedding dresses which took a whole convent of nuns to make.

Of course you, gentle reader, would never be so narrow-minded as to say that anyone should stick only to one discipline; I'm sure you've discovered the ease of making up garments with a crochet hook, for example.

If you've tried one but not the other, why not give it a go? Whatever you learn will expand your abilities as a crafter. And that can't be a bad thing, can it?

We're all in it for the yarn; let's not squabble over what shape our sticks are.

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Tigger says, "I don't care how you make it, as long as it's comfortable."

4 comments:

Mary Anne said...

Absolutely. I can crochet, if I really work at it, but I prefer knitting, esp. the feel of the needles in my hands, but I love the look of many crocheted items.

Vicki said...

I've just watched the repeats of the Dr Who three-parter. Fabulous stuff, I agree with you about John Simm - brilliant control of the character. Do you think his wife is pregnant - but because time has gone backward will she now not be? Is there the possibility of a part human time lord popping up in the future or not? I can't cope with time travel stories to be honest. No-one should have been able to remember what did not happen - or rather what happened, but then was wiped out by a return to what was before... oooo, my head, I'm going for a lie down.

littlelixie said...

Definitely agree with what you say about crochet. I hold my hands up that I joined in with the 'look yuck' chorus when someone was crocheting but i think this was because i couldn't do it. Now I can get by with it and I hugely admire those who specialise. Perhaps it can be put down to tool envy?!

Amerynthe said...

I am stunned, nay, horrified, to hear that there is dissention in the ranks! Knit one, purl one, or double or treble crochet, everyone is an artisan! But I suppose it's the same with cars. It may be a Skoda, it may be a Jag: everyone's a driver but one group may sneer at the other.
As for me, my attempts at both knitting and crochet can at best be described as adequate, so I admire anyone who can turn wool into something beautiful, be it with a needle or a hook.
Maybe I should stick to my knitting dolly?