Knit it, Violet!
Finished objects, works in progress, and lots of rambling about two sticks and some string...
Sunday, July 23, 2006
  sorry, i'm not sorry.....
i got to thinking about fun fur since the slippers (see my last post) are sitting in my living room...and maybe it's just the BadAss Knitter coming out in me, but a giant rant started to brew. . .

warning: this is really, really long. my intention is definitely NOT to insult anyone, just to encourage less-judgemental knit blogging, and to get some stuff off my chest. so if you're brave, read on. if you're looking for happy pictures of knitting, either come back tomorrow or find another blog, k?


really, i do. i've decided to break this post down into my main points to avoid my usual tangents.

1. Yarn Snobbery. now, i admit to poking fun at myself and claiming the title of yarn snob, because, i admit it, i hold natural fibers above everything else. wool, alpaca, silk, i love it all. However, i'm also a college student, and i live with this condition called a Small Budget. which means i shop wisely for the best yarn i can afford, and i'm also open to cheaper options.

moreover, not all synthetics/cheap yarn is crap. i think even the Yarn Snobs know this, but the "I HATE ACRYLIC" club still stands strong. i've even seen freaking buttons for secret pal swaps that basically say, "DON'T SEND ME ACRYLIC YOU CHEAP, SORRY EXCUSE FOR A KNITTER!!" and that makes me really angry/dissappointed in my fellow knitters. even if it's meant to be a joke, i feel like it alienates people who a) LIKE some acrylic, and/or b) may be on a more fixed income for whatever reason, but still would like to swap and share nice things with another knitter.

besides, acrylic and blends can be really, really nice. even by yarn snob standards. yet, when i do a yarn swap, i find myself constantly putting yarn back on the shelf because it's 2% polyester and nobody wants that. they make buttons about it, for god's sake.

i'll admit i had a chuckle at the Knitters Against Fun-Fur buttons, and i stay far, far away from fun-fur garmets for adults (um, like the baby chicken style coat on the cover of Knit1? excuse me while i run in the other direction. ditto for the fun-fur scarves. eep. but if that floats another knitter's boat, more power to them! knit what you want! don't apologize.

and can't we all agree that even some of the crappier/tackier have their purpose? i mean, for things other than garmets for...Adults With A Certain Fashion Sense? what else makes better monster slippers than everyone's least favorite yarn? also, acrylic (not necessarily fun-fur) is GREAT for kid's stuff. it's easy to care for (who really wants to give a hand-wash garmet to a non-knitter? it's begging for disaster) and kids are fickle. in my opinion, i'd much rather see a lovingly made $12 sweater on the floor of my 10-year-old brother's room than a lovingly made $80 one. but maybe that's just me??

2. "Knitting And Knitting Only, Please!" Vigilantes.
now i understand most of us read knitting blogs to, uh, read about knitting. but it seems the past week or so, i have read a lot of complaints from people who get irritated with "off topic" posts. now, i understand if it was an email ring, like KnitList, where you'd be getting off topic emails, but these are BLOGS for god's sake. no one is forcing you to read them. no one is delivering them to your inbox and cluttering up your space. see that little X in the corner. Click it at will!

i love reading about people's knitting. i love seeing what yarns they use, what techniques they like, what projects they choose, etc. But i also like reading about the lives of other Knitters. i love when people share about their kids, their cats, hampsters, husbands, whatever. knitting blogs provide knitting community...which yes, is about knitting, but it's also about Community. so please don't gripe that you Don't Feel Like You're Learning Anything when people post a picture of their cat. Knitting blogs are a great place to share knitting information and learn, but come on, if it's Strict Knitting Education you're after, there are books, shops, websites, and classes for that.

(for the curious, i have an "off-topic" online journal elsewhere...otherwise you'd be getting far more fiber-free posts.)

3. Apologies For Popular Projects. i Hate when i read someone's blog or post (especially at Craftster) where they apologize for making a panta, an anthropologie inspired caplet, a tubey, a branching out, a log cabin blanket, or whatever. projects like those get made frequently because they're super-cute (or at least a lot of people think so!) and/or well designed, with clear patterns. plus, it's awesome to see other people's versions of projects i have made or want to make. that's why we do knit alongs, right?

and i know i'm guilty of it too. you start with the little disclaimer, "now, i know this is nothing new..." or some equivalent. isn't that ridiculous? can you imagine the knitters from the past, getting together for a little stitch n bitch to work on the umpteenth pair of socks for their husbands, saying, "now, i'm sorry there's nothing more interesting for me to show you...."

/END RANT. i really am a nice knitter, i swear. i just had to get that all out. bottom line is, knit and let knit. play nice with the other knitters, even if they use red heart to make a project you've seen 1,000 times before. get over it if they post pictures of their cat and you're allergic. big deal. find other blogs if it kills you so much. or take up scrapbooking instead.

and if you commit any of those "knitting faux pas" like using acrylic, knitting a common project, or not posting thoughtprovoking, knitting-only posts every 24-48 hours, don't apologize! knit proudly. blog proudly. this is supposed to be fun, remember? join the badass knitters webring if you need support.

now, because i know some of you are only here for the yarn (ha!) i was going to post pictures of what's currently on my needles (sock #2, and a soon-to-be felted fibertrends stuffed alpaca), my latest knitpicks order, and an adorable crocheted gift from my boyfriend, but blogger won't let me post pictures, so you'll just have to wait.
Hello! I love your blog and I completely agree with you. Being a poor college student myself, I find myself wishing I could buy more natural fibers, but going after the cheaper stuff appreciatively because without it I'd be knitting a lot less, which would be no fun. And as for your point about knitting the popular stuff, I just started a log cabin blanket and am always apologizing on my site for "jumping on the bandwagon." But you are absolutely right--who cares? If you want to knit it (or knit with it) go for it, right?

Anyway, thanks for saying what needed to be said. Have a great day!

YEAH!!! I can't stand the knitting snottiness spreading like wildfire lately. My blog is rarely fiber ONLY. I mention knitting in 99% of my post, but I'll be damned if I'm not going to blog about my life, too.

I mean...I'm paying for the damn thing!!

Rant on, sister.
I agree entirely. I'm in college, I've got the budget, and there are things I like and don't like, but what it comes down to is IT'S JUST KNITTING. No, I don't like Fun Fur, but I have three shopping bags FULL of Red Heart and it's totally useful and I would never give it up. I've been to a ton of knitting circles around here where it's just a ton of snobby middle aged women from Rittenhouse or something who look and me and say "KnitPicks? Ew." And who are they to criticize me or my fiber?

Thanks for saying it first.
AMEN! I loved your post and totally agree with every single point. I'm a fairly new knitter on a budget, and yes, I'd love to make fun pretty stuff with expensive yarn someday, but first of all I'd like to practice with the cheap stuff, and second of all, like you said, cheap is not always bad!!

Interestingly enough I think these issues pop up in all online communities. Even running. The big time runners scoff at those of us with real lives and jobs who only run 5 miles a week. We apparently are a bane to the sport. Well I say that's crap. No matter what you do in life the last thing you should be doing is only trying to please others! Do what works for you (including blogging about daily life instead of knitting every day) and screw the snobs!

-Hope my language was not to strong, mean people just make me mad!!
I agree with everything you said! My posts are never 100% fiber related and to be honest I get bored with blogs that are. While I love reading about knitting it's more of a virtual Sn'B to me. That lends itself to hearing about husbands, kids, cats and.... hampsters ( I think I missed that blog).

As far as the acrylic goes I really love Lion's Brand wool ease. I have used it so many times over for kids and boy knits. It's just wrong to be so snobby when your are in a swap.

It seems to go in cycles around the knitblogs. Togetherness-snarky comments-togetherness-snarky comments and so on. That's why the little x and bloglines is great. You can choose the people you want to read!

Amen, Violet! I loved this post.
See you in Portland! xo
that was miranda, by the way :)
Well said! I couldn't agree with you more. Down with cliquey really cuts into the knitting time.
Great post! I agree with everything you said ;) I am glad that I got to read it!
That was a well-put rant! :) I wish that everyone would just respect themselves, and eachother. Most of the other issues would just fall away. If I don't love something I see/read, I just move on. No big deal!
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Location: up in the redwoods, California, United States

violet is a crafty girl with feminist values. knitting is her main squeeze, but she also flirts with sewing, embroidery, mosaics, jewelry making, block printing, and polymer clay. she's also been known to cook and garden. she loves a good thrift shop, teapots, and her boyfriend kellen.

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