A couple months ago, me and a friend wanted to have a serious conversation. I’m awful at having serious conversations. I get distracted too easily, and I have a panic reflex that makes me try to be funny. This is either a welcome relief, or super frustrating. But anyway, we decided we were going to knit and talk. This was a brand new concept to me. Crafting thus far has been a fairly solitary activity for me. I’d been to classes, mostly embroidery but some general sewing and others I’m sure, but the ones I went to were very serious and sterile. I came away thinking you make art alone.
You can’t really make art alone though. Art is something that reflects who you are, and who you are is in turn a reflection of every experience you have – every person you talk to, every movie you watch, every song you listen to.
Art, in its various forms, is what brings people together.
I went to a knitting night at a local yarn store last week. I went with three girls who are all right at 20, and we all kind of awkwardly sidled into this tiny store and found seats in one of the circles. I don’t know what I was expecting. Grandmothers, I guess. But the three ladies we sat with were all a good decade apart, and the youngest of them had brought her daughter, who was about 6 or 7. The fact that there wasn’t an age gap made me really happy, because making things by hand is something I was raised to admire, and it seems to be going by the wayside. I guess that’s why Etsy makes me so happy.
We spent about an hour there. All three of those ladies were Harry Potter fans. At least two of them were Whovians. I had never thought of knitting as social, but there I was, talking to perfect strangers about things we both loved. We talked about knitting and writing and traveling and a whole bunch of things that flowed one into another between two and three concurrent conversations.
I had the time of my life. It’s all the socializing of a dinner party without the social anxiety of being watched while I eat. So even though I went in rather nervously, I’m definitely going again.
It’s a thing of beauty, isn’t it? The art that binds together.