After I said 1,000 times that I wouldn't ever become a knitter ... enter the Wearwithall Stole. I saw it on Days of a Sampler Lover's blog and just couldn't quit looking at it. I became obsessed with reading every note posted on Ravelry about it and although it's a large project, it only calls for knit and purl stitches, so it seemed doable for my return to the craft.
My first venture into knitting was somewhere around junior high when my grandmother taught me the basic stitches. I saved my babysitting money to buy a batch of the fluffiest, pinkest yarn available in Topeka, Kansas and set out to make quite the 80's sweater, a la Footloose. I knit knit knit knit knit and I actually finished the sweater. Unfortunately, I didn't know anything about blocking, and poo-pooed the importance of gauge. So I fearlessly produced a very ill-fitting sweater. I did wear it a couple of times and was very proud of it and embaressed by it at the same time. (Oh the gloriousness we could be reliving, if only camera phones existed then!) I clearly remember my mom being very distraught that I put so much time into it and wasn't 100% happy with it and didn't really wear it. I couldn't figure out why she was so upset and I wasn't. I guess early evidence that the process of crafting brings me as much joy as having a finished project.
Anyway, I never picked up the knitting needles again until this weekend. The circular needles, Wearwithall book and yarn all came together last Saturday. I'm loving it. This first stripe definitely has some issues, but by the time I finish the 116,640 stitches required (literally) I should be a very practiced knitter and purler. The purls are already going better. During the first few rows, every time I came to the purls my hands were clumsy and my brain was wrapped around itself and my feet were clenched very hard to the ground. I'm on about row 19 (of 324) and it feels much more natural. Especially since I can now breathe and purl at the same time. Progress!