Exciting news at casa de Introverted Knitter, I am going to be an aunt again. My big brother and his wife are expecting their first little one in May. (This is the brother I knit the wedding blanket for last spring/summer.) When I first heard about the impending arrival I started thinking of all the things I wanted to make for the wee one. Hats, sweaters, booties for the tiny feet, and of course every baby needs a blanket. Due to the previously mentioned Denver vacation my ability to go out and buy new yarn (at least enough for a blanket) has been put on hold. No problem, I figured this would give me the chance to really find the perfect pattern (or loosely plan out my own design.)
This time has also given me a chance to ponder whether I should be knitting for this kiddo. Now hear me out before you jump at me, needles at the ready, I have knit for my nieces and nephews (the majority of which are my brother’s from a previous relationship) since I picked up knitting again back in 2010 (which seriously has only been 3 years, holy cow) and while they are all young (and thus prone to out growing or losing things) I have never heard a word about whether the items were used. Bare in mind, that in that time I have also knit for my brother and his wife (the wedding blanket being the last thing thus far) and I have not heard a peep about the knitting. Now my brother is extremely busy (4 kids and working two jobs, plus dating and then getting married) and so I don’t expect them to gush or make a fuss about the items. They have taken the obligatory photo for me, but beyond that I have no idea what happens to it all. In all honesty I think once you gift away your knitting (or sell or donate) it is the recipients choice to do with it as they wish. Now I will admit I may be a bit hurt if I found out a blanket that I spent six months and over a mile’s worth of yarn on was donated or used as a place to store muddy shoes, but I would (try) to accept it and move on.
So then I come to the question of whether to knit for the impending wee one or not. It isn’t that I don’t think the little one is knit worthy, I mean how could they not be? They are so tiny, so items for them don’t take too long, they have no verbal opinion on what they wear and so you can’t do something wrong, and they just look so darn cute in handmade items. It isn’t that I am upset about my brother not saying anything about the hand knit items, but rather it is about what it means to be a responsible knitter. At the end of the day I knit, because I like knitting, and I like
smothering wrapping those I love in woolly goodness.
I love the idea that I can give people a piece of myself and my time when I give them a hat, a mitten or a scarf. I enjoy knowing that I made something with my hands, some sticks and some string. But, I wonder does this make me selfish? Am I consumed with a desire to knit things that sometimes I lose sight of the fact that others may not want hand-made items (the thought seems foreign to me, even now) that someone may not want a handmade blanket as a wedding gift? Am I blinded by wool fumes, and I can’t take a hint that maybe instead of shelling out the cash for the yarn for a handmade baby blanket I should be spending that money on something else they might want for the baby? I am a knitter that wants my items to be cherished and used and loved. I am a person who wants to give a gift that makes the recipient feel special and loved and thought of, but is knitting the right way to do it? If the parents aren’t going to use the hats, or dress the baby in the sweater, than what was the point of spending the money and using the time to make something? If they don’t like the blanket and don’t want to use it, than is it better to go out and buy this magical device called a diaper genie?
I still haven’t decided what I am going to do. My desire to wrap the tiny human in woolly goodness is still there, but I can’t help but wonder, is that what a responsible knitter would do?