Wednesday, 22 February 2012

I will knit and wear a Scarf of Doom with pride

I have had a problems with my mental health over the years, as most people who know me will know, but many things help to keep me ticking over when it's pretty crappy. Knitting is definitely one of them. The satisfaction of producing something handmade is always brilliant, even when it's as simple as a scarf that will take 3 hours. And, moreover, there are always other knitters to talk to, encourage, be supported by, and learn from. Not to mention all those potential knitters to bring to the dark side!

Deadly Knitshade is the sort of knitter all knitters want to be. She's a fab designer, a brilliant and clever writer, and she scrapes a living doing what we all love. Proper kudos! She also learned to knit - like so many others - when life was a bit shit. She appeared on BBC London news a few weeks ago (alongside the perfectly marvelous Aneeta Patel of Knitting SOS), and managed to do an early morning interview, whilst knitting a garter-stitch scarf. Quite an achievement! Both Lauren and Aneeta are fabulous ambassadors for the knitting community, and the range of knitted items they had between them to show off would be enough, I hope, to convince the world that these talented ladies have something pretty special going on.

However, not everyone was as entranced by this performance as they might have been and the haters came out in force. Hiding behind the internet, ordinary people (even some knitters) started bitching about the scarf and using it as a means to cast aspersions on Lauren herself; even on the lovely blue hair! (I also have blue hair at the moment, blue hair is cool.) Very sadly, the staff of some well-known yarn companies joined in on their Facebook pages. As Ms. Knitshade has failed to name and shame them in her blog, I will follow suit, but I will also think twice before I shop with them again.

And so to the Scarf of Doom. It has become a symbol for all that is best about the knitting community. We make stuff that looks however the [cough] we like. If we want to make a fugly scarf, and if we (or anyone else) is proud to wear it, then we damn well will and all the internet hate in the world won't stop us.

I have raided my stash and found some left-overs that will look brilliantly bold and probably clash quite a lot. My Scarf of Doom will stand for all I love about knitting; it will make me happy!

Woolly solidarity!

Aneeta's books: Knitty Gritty, and Knitty Gritty: The Tricky Bits
Deadly Knitshade's books: Stitch London, and Knit the City
Ravelry users' Scarves of Doom

Originally posted on RowleyPolyBird