|Hello, my yarnie friends. How are you? I hope and pray you are doing well. I know this has been a tough year, in so many ways. I personally have faced different challenges and hardships; but I have also been uplifted and gifted with many blessings that are too great to ignore. This has led to feelings of joy and hope despite what seems like a never-ending barrage of bad news. |
One case in point is this beautiful reflection from the recently deceased Cat Bordhi, the infamous knitwear designer, teacher and author responsible for promulgating such techniques as the Sweet Tomato Heel and the Möbius Cast-On:
My greatest joy IS being able to help my students discover that they are capable of so much more than they dreamed. They realize that they can make changes and handle the outcome, can be creative, and can trust themselves both in knitting and beyond. Knitting has the most marvelous ability to free up the knitter as a human being, while masquerading as innocent knitting. It is actually the best personal trainer you will ever find, offering spiritual guidance all along the way. I am so glad this is what shall carry me Home over the next week or so. That and the arms and love of my daughter Jenny, grandson Charlie, and small circle of devoted friends and family, and vast circle of knitters—like you. I thank you for your love and patience and goodness. May we all go Home with needles and yarn in our arms. (Excerpted from Modern Daily Knitting: "A Note from Cat Bordhi")
Her final words of love and encouragement for her devoted fans perfectly sum up my own feelings and aspirations—for the needle arts, for myself, and for you. The reason Yarn Soup exists is not simply to supply the world with beautiful yarn—it is to transform the world through the power of the needle arts and the relationships formed with other makers on the journey. Knitting and crochet have been a part of my ongoing personal renaissance, and I want them to be a part of yours too.
I want you to experience the satisfaction of overcoming your own anxieties, doubts, fears, and self-defeating actions and attitudes as you create something new, which truthfully WOULD NOT EXIST without your initiative, sacrifice, and striving. Are there other scarves in the world? Of course. But there is none exactly like yours. The quality of the outcome does not matter—by working with your hands to make something out of yarn, you are participating in a Creative Act, and the world becomes different. You become different. You grow in confidence; your generosity, love and creativity find a new outlet; your mind quiets down; and the imperfections of life are taken in stride.
I know that the needle arts are what we need right now. In a way, they are what the world needs right now. The world needs people who will allow beauty and goodness to lure them into a new way of thinking, feeling and acting. It needs people whose undaunted exercise of creativity opens a path for them to be courageous in other parts of their lives. It needs a community of people who find each other because of a common love of yarn, and are thus bonded to others with whom they might not otherwise connect.
Cat Bordhi knew and believed in these principles, these truths, so deeply, she not only focused her professional and creative life around them, she allowed them to become the final wisdom she would impart to us in this life. The world is different and better because of Cat Bordhi. It can also be different and better because of you.
So how has yarn changed your life? What has knitting or crochet (or name your favorite fiber art form) meant to you personally? What have you learned about yourself? How can knitting or crocheting help you fulfill your commitment to growing and changing as a person?