Honeys, we’ve reached the Tipping Point.
It’s 5:13 PM EST on Thursday and we’ve got over 250 people signed up for this KAL. The way things are going, I would wager that by the time I hit publish on this post tomorrow morning ten more people will have signed up. I think I can safely say that this knitalong has reached the proportions of Clapotis, Rogue, Birch – whatever came before that I don’t know. It’s INSANE. I never, ever, in my wildest dreams thought it would come to this. NEVER. I have to say, honestly, it’s making me a little bit uncomfortable. I was reading over at Stephannie’s today and she had a very compelling post. I’m quoting it with her permission:
“There’s an interesting tension in the knitting world…. It’s about whether to join a trend on the blogs.
Do you knit the Jaywalker socks or not? If you really like them and have sock needles free and the right yarn, are you a mindless trend follower or are you just knitting what you like, recognizing that lots of other knitters like it too? How does something become a big knitting trend anyway–the next Birch or Clapotis or Jaywalker or Rogue?
In the end it shouldn’t really matter to anyone else what you knit or what you do with your knits. We all come to this craft with differing sets of motivations and desires and that’s what makes it fun. Yesterday at Lettuce Knit (yes, I finally attended a Stitch’n'Bitch and had a great time) there was a woman knitting a beautiful Jade Starmore steeked stole, two of us making jaywalker socks, some blankets, a baby sweater and a nifty-box in progress. Some swore they would never make Jaywalker socks now that they are the thing, others were thinking about it despite the teasing of their friends.
Really in the big world out there, we are not a trendsetting sub-culture that will be on the cover of People magazine, we won’t get to the front of the line at the “right” bars because we knit. And we like it that way. We’re used to be on the outside of what the media deems as popular culture. So who cares if a bunch of us knits the same thing?”
Steph’s post came a very interesting time for me – what with my inbox filling up every five seconds with people wanting to get in on the KAL. I, myself, follow along the lines of I knit what I knit when I want to knit it and am not one to follow trends – in knitting or in my life in general. In fact, I’m often one of those people that WON’T go along with the crowd – sort of following Groucho’s maxim: I wouldn’t want to be a member of any club that would have me as a member. Along those lines, this is my reply to Stephannie:
This is such a tough question for me! I’m generally one who really likes to go along with my own thing – only knitting things I really want to knit.
I have knit Clapotis – and I enjoyed it. It was the perfect gift for a friend and I got to use glorious silk yarn and over all I was very pleased with it. That said, I haven’t knit any of the other knits you listed. Except of course The Jaywalker.
Ah the jaywalker. As I said before, I knit what I want to knit. How did I find the sock? Well, I had come home from Rhinebeck with a lot of STR, lol, and was looking for the perfect pattern. I really don’t like the whole feather and fan sock thing – at all – and I’m not a real chevron fan either – although an argument could be made that the Jaywalker is a chevron. There was something about the clean lines and stripey goodness and I cast on. I never swatched. I never deliberated about size. I just cast on and started to knit and I LOVED the way the yarn looked. And of course, I love the STR. I mean how could you not love that yarn? But anyway, back to jaywalkers. I was EXTREMELY lucky in that the pattern fit right off the bat, if not a tad tight over the heel, and I managed to make a pair without running out of yarn and it really was one of those fated yarn things where the pattern and the yarn and the wearer all kind of had a kismet relationship.
So I tried to see if I could duplicate that lightning strike again. And I did. And I did. And believe it or not I cast on for sock #14 last night. I’ve got six pairs of finished jaywalkers with no end in sight.
Did I mean to start some kind of crazy knitblog fad? ABSOLUTELY NOT! In fact it’s starting to drive me a bit crazy all those jaywalkers out there. Believe it or not, I feel COMPLETELY AND TOTALLY responsible when someone has fit trouble or runs out of STR or basically hates the sock.
The only reason I keep knitting them is because I love how they look and I love how they feel on my feet. I love the yarn. In fact I have all this other non-STR sock yarn that would be perfect for jaywalkers and I can’t do it. It’s like they have to be STR, for ME, or nothing else. And I’ve seen some great jaywalkers out there with other yarns, yarns I have in stash, but I guess my goal is to work my way through the small(er) skeins of STR in the stash – stuff I know how to make a pair of fantastic socks with.
Each pair I cast on is my new favorite pair. I completely understand the idea of I’ll never make them because everyone else is making them and honestly, I’ve done that in my life. Not wanted to do something because everyone else is doing it. At this point I’m like THANK YOU! That’s one less update I have to worry about. Although it also makes me a little bit sad because, you know, I do think it’s a great pattern.
In the end, what’s so AMAZINGLY WONDERFUL about knitting is that there’s stuff like this out there! You can knit what everyone else is knitting, or you can’t or you can make up something on your own or be inspired by something else or knit dishclothes all day long and be EXTRAORDINARILY HAPPY! How LUCKY are we to have found such an amazingly diverse outlet for our creativity!
Thanks for your post and I’m sorry to take up so much space – I probably should’ve saved this for my own blog. But it’s something I’ve been thinking a lot about – feeling guilty I guess – and wanted to get my feelings off my chest.
So, that’s how I feel. I appreciate all those people out there that say Clapotis, Schmapotis. Rogue, Schmogue. Birch, Schmirch. And of course, Jaywalker, Schmaywalker. If I had come along right now, with all those Jaywalkers out there and jaywalker jaywalker jaywalker I would think twice about it too. I honestly would. Which is kind of a shame because I know what a great pattern it is FOR ME and how nice MY YARN looks knit up with it and how comfortable it feels on MY FEET. And I have no problem knitting it over and over again. BUT I understand that there are people that knit something once and have to move on. There are no WRONGS in knitting. NONE WHATSOVER. We need to knit what we need to knit when we need to knit it. And for those who don’t want to jaywalk, I’ve made you your own button:
Dudes! I’m all inclusive! No one should be left out! Which brings me to my next problem. I can’t keep up with you people. When it was a small group of say 100 people, I could write up all my superfantastic updates and trust me when I tell you I had a lot of fun doing it! It’s great fun to go and visit all your blogs week after week – especially the ones I don’t normally read. But now, now I can’t. It takes hours to go through all the blogs and honestly, the updates you send me end up getting lost in the shuffle with all the sign-up comments and I’m not as organized as I’d like to be, so what I’m going to do is list everyone who has an update with a link to their blog post, and if you’re a non-blogger I will still post your pictures and where you’re at in the progress. I’m sorry. My only other alternative is to close the KAL
and I just feel like I can’t do that. We’ve got over a month to go in the KAL – or at least until the winners are announced, and I just know the updates are going to get bigger and bigger and I need to do other things. Sometimes at least. I hope you all understand. I just hate disappointing people! HATE IT!
That said, MY OWN SOCK updates will go on forever. Yes, I’ve finished another pair of jaywalkers. Introducing: TWO POP ROCKS!
Remember this song, Two of Hearts? 80′s Madonna like, artist is Stacey Q? I always thought it sounded like Two Pop Tarts. (Apparently I’m not alone either.) So the whole time I’m knitting these socks I’ve got that song playing in my head. Made for interesting knitting that’s for sure. Suddenly I’d burst out with Two Pop Tarts and G would start laughing at me. Craziness. These jaywalkers are making me CRAZY!
I tried to do the whole sexy shoe thing like Anna, but I don’t really have many sexy shoes. I’m a Merrell girl. But I did find the shoes I wore for my wedding, which happened to be dyed in almost the exact pink of the POP ROCK Jaywalker. Here’s the artsy fartsy shit I came up with:
Um, my calves aren’t that big. I mean they’re not skinny or anything they’re nice and shapely and the one in the picture above just looks weird.
Oh and in case you were all wondering, I immediately cast on for another pair. Yeah. I can HEAR you all groaning.
I swear to God – this is my favorite Jaywalker YET! I SWEAR! And before you all jump all over me about the yarn, this is Socks That Rock, BUT it’s a Rare Gem which means there is NO OTHER YARN LIKE IT IN THE WORLD. Rare Gems are skeins that don’t quite make it to the color they’re supposed to be, so they become like blank canvases for Tina and she does whatever her genius deems necessary at that moment. They are truly rare gems. Sorry y’all. This one’s mine.
Which leads me to my last point before I start with YOUR updates. Kris, my better than the best better pal, said something really profound on her finished jaywalker post, she said:
“what is wrong with me? i never want to do a pattern twice. there’s something strange with this pattern – just look at cara; she’s up to double digits soon – it is just so brilliant in combination with self-striping or variegated yarn that you can’t help yourself, you need to try it one more time to see if it’s as gorgeous in another yarn.”
Couldn’t have said it better myself! BRING ON THE JAYWALKERS!
(Updates in the extended entry!)
= ^&$#$%@ this ^&$^$#%$#%@ SOCK!
= We’re JAYWALKING BAYBEE! FINISHED!!
Ellie (Oh and big hugs Ellie!)
Kristie – A little of this and now hopefully a lot of this She had to rip the first attempt and then start over, but things seem good to go now.
Leslie LOOK AT THAT CUTIE PATOOTIE!!
All you finished sock knitters, go over and add your totals to Amie‘s blog – she’s hoping to count up 2006 socks knit in 2006!
If I missed you in the updates, I sincerely apologize. HAVE A GREAT WEEKEND!