Holiday Gift-Giving is What Drives Knitters Completely Mad, Right??

I was one of those knitters this year that decided to gift handmade goods to everyone on my holiday giving list.  While I can honestly say that I am glad that I did so and I enjoyed all the making of items for others, I can also honestly say that it was a wee bit stressful.

Some of my creatively handmade gifted items this year!

Some of my creatively handmade gifted items this year!

Sure, it starts out all giddy excitement – picking patterns and yarn and imagining spotless, perfectly knitted pieces of lovingly created craft wrapped up beautifully, waiting to be opened by their recipients with delight and care.

But it comes to an end with needles frantically clicking together, items stretched out, blocking all over the apartment (leaving little room to walk), you taking clandestine trips to coffee shops where you knit speedily in secret away from those in your home who are receivers of said gifts, and wrapping up items quickly, pushing cats off the wrapping paper and frowning with stress over all the errors you notice (a purl instead of a knit here, a slight snag in the yarn there, that one stupid row where you forgot to slip the first stitch and knitted it instead!), until you’ve convinced yourself that you’ve put together sad excuses for gifts that would be fine if they were coming from a third-grader who goes to a Waldorf school and learned to knit that term, rather than a 32-year old woman who has been at the craft for a couple of years now and spent weeks working on them.

Phew.

But, really, I AM glad I did it.

Irregardless of the imperfections and unsure of which items will be put to good use and which may be tossed into the dark recesses of a closet, I AM glad I did it for a Knitting vintage girlcouple of reasons.  Each handmade item was crafted with thought for the intended recipient.  Instead of heading to the mall and buying whatever gifty things were marketed to the masses, I did take the time to consider each recipient and personalize something specifically for each of them.  I also supported local, small businesses with my crafted gifts.  Supplies used either came from my stash of yarn (which had been previously purchased locally) or was bought fresh from local yarn and craft stores.  And I am proud to share something that I love to do with others in my life.  Like me, the items may not be perfectly crafted, but they are full of good intentions and the spirit of generosity.

Also, of course, now that it’s all over, selfish knitting can take over!  Now begins a few months, at least, of sorting through my Ravelry library and queue and cozying up to items that I can toss around my own neck, slip onto my own hands, and sprinkle throughout my apartment.  Exciting stuff is in the works, indeed!

20 comments on “Holiday Gift-Giving is What Drives Knitters Completely Mad, Right??

  1. runcolbyrun says:

    Beautiful things! I wish I was on your Holiday Giving list! 🙂

  2. I love giving and receiving handmade gifts. When did you start all of your projects? Beginning of the year? It would take me forever to complete that many projects….but you’ve inspired me!

    • I started in Aug/Sept. Most of the gifts were fairly quick knits (dish clothes, an iPad cover), but there was one scarf that took quite a while. Though I LOVED knitting and the finished project. It was the Wayfarer scarf by Jared Flood.

  3. seetinarun says:

    Gorgeous! Learning to knit is on my list of things I want to do — looking at your gifts just may be the inspiration I need!

    • Thanks! And, that’s great to hear – the world can always use more knitters! I find knitters to be a great community of people. It’s similar to runners – like belonging to a little club! 🙂

  4. runnergurrl says:

    I love knit items. I learned to knit last year and I did get the gist of it. However, whether making a hat, gloves, socks, whatever…..my efforts always turned out being a scarf. I applaud your talent though!

  5. I completely agree with you on handmade gifts… I think what also matters is the time you put into making something for a specific person. I mean, popping to the store and grabbing something along will make you think of the recipient for a moment… but when you knit for person, you keep thinking of them for a much longer time.

  6. Heather says:

    What a goal! And you made it! Did you start early? We knitters are usually the only ones to note a missed stitch, etc. I adore handmade gifts. What lucky recipients! Looking forward to seeing more of your FO’s.

    • Thank you! I started around August/September and knitted like a madwoman! I think you’re right about us knitters being the only one to notice those things – but they sure do stare us right in the face, don’t they?

  7. Mary says:

    As the lucky recipient of one of your gifts I have to say that I thought they were perfect! Perfect colors, perfect design and perfect execution. I love them. And you should know – I think you’ve woken the latent knitter in me. Last week I spent thirty minutes in the yarn department. That never happened before. You’re a good influence!

  8. Oh that Christmas deadline was stressing me out! And I only had a couple of projects. Fortunately they are appreciated. 🙂

  9. catrionabarr says:

    This is so true! I’ve been known to still be knitting away furiously in the early hours of Xmas morning, followed by blurry-eyed wrapping (definitely stressful) but it’s so lovely to give something personal – not only because people appreciate it, but because it’s great to be able to share the outputs of my passion with others, rather than keeping them to myself!

  10. abbeyspiro says:

    Oh my gosh I think we are the same person…except I happen to be a holiday knitting failure… i.e. every year I SAY I’m going to do this and end up purchasing gifts…also second i.e. would be my mother in law’s scarf half finished in my living room… next year…

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