Process or Result Oriented

scottly's picture

The gender survey that Joe found started me on gender theory of my own. While generalizations are always dangerous, I have a pretty strong feeling that the mjority of men knitters are more process oriented while women are more result oriented when it comes to knitting. Most of the women knitters that I know neither know or care why a stitch does what it does and they rarely indulge in knitting theory. They want to get the job done and wear it. Where as most of the men that I know are far more interested in the process of knitting and the finished product is really secondary.

There are of course exceptions. I've had many an interesting knitting theory conversations with women but part of that conversation is usually a rant about women who knit like trained monkeys - by the woman I'm talking to - not me!

So, what are your thoughts. I, myself, am very process oreinted.

Comments

Tom Hart's picture

At this point in my knitting

At this point in my knitting "career" I'm pretty much in the "process" camp. I'm a new knitter so almost everything I make is something I've not done before. And since I've been bit by the double-knit bug I find that reference material (either printed or on YouTube) for what I want to do is limited and I have to figure out a lot of stuff by myself. I love a good final result as much as anyone but at this point there seems to be at least one rip-back (usually several) in every single project.

Asplund's picture

Interesting theory! I myself

Interesting theory! I myself am certainly far more process-oriented: I rarely knit because there is something I want to have but usually because there is something I want to make/try/learn. There's a technique to master, another combination of colours or cables to try, perhaps adding a gusset for more comfort... But of course it's satisfying finishing a project too.

Asplund's picture

Interesting theory! I myself

Interesting theory! I myself am certainly far more process-oriented: I rarely knit because there is something I want to have but usually because there is something I want to make/try/learn. There's a technique to master, another combination of colours or cables to try, perhaps adding a gusset for more comfort... But of course it's satisfying finishing a project too.

scottly's picture

Let me reiterate,

Let me reiterate, generalization are dangereous and this is just an interesting point of departure on knitting thought processes. I of course don't know all women knitters everywhere nor all men knitters. As a matter of fact my circle is probably rather small compared to others here. I was just wondering what others experiences were. I do wish we had a few women to chime in. Also let me say I don't really value one type of knitter over another - if I were more result oriented I might actually get more done. I guess, most good knitters are probably a healthy mix of both.

This woman uses both

This woman uses both processes. I have knit things because I needed a quick result and I have knit things because it has taught me a new stitch, or new technique. I now uses both processes together so that I can make up a hat pattern as I go along or I can heavily adapt a written pattern. I think most knitters start out as I did by knitting a simple scarf and move on from there learning new stitches and techniques until your confidence has grown and you arrive at the point where expediency and process are part and parcel of achieving a finished object.

Joe-in Wyoming's picture

Interesting topic. All the

Interesting topic. All the comments address aspects of it. Back in the day, we used to speak of "Conceptual" versus "Creator" but it boils down to the same thing...are you more geared to designing rather than actually crafting. But MMario's comment pretty much sums it up for me, anymore: If the projects involves a challenge or new technique, I'm often more driven. That's why I seldom repeat a sock I've designed but will work out a variation. Plus, I no longer have the "Gotta knit everything insight, Right Now!" phase that a lot of knitters go through. Maybe it is just me, but I am happy to just work on the things I do and enjoy a sense of accomplishment when done. Which has greatly cut back on the half-finished projects sitting around until I either get the urge to complete them or froggem. BTW, for me it hasn't ever seemed an especially gender specific thing...probably because most of my circle are interested in at least some aspects of both the process and results.

MMario's picture

It depends on the particular

It depends on the particular project for me.

No gender associations here

No gender associations here in my experience. However, women in general will wear a greater variety of knitwear.

teejtc's picture

It's funny you asked, I was

It's funny you asked, I was just having this conversation with my wife a week or so ago. I used to knit/tat/etc. because I enjoyed the process of doing it; but over the past few years, I've changed a bit. Sure, I still enjoy doing them, but now I tend gravitate toward projects that I will finish in a reasonable amount of time. It's psychological for me; the vast majority of my life is just "one row after another" with no real end in sight and I've learned that I need a certain amount of "completion" in my life to stay sane. Knitting provides me with regular completions.

I used to have semesters and school years (that provided regularly scheduled completions, almost automatically), not so anymore. Thank goodness for knitting!

Grace and peace,
`tim

Tallguy's picture

"Four-ugh!" is old?? Who

"Four-ugh!" is old?? Who knew!!

I don't think you are correct in saying that men are technically inclined, while women want to finish it and wear it. That has not been my experience. I do think there may be a slight age difference here but again, that is not always true.

I like the knitting. What it becomes doesn't matter so much. That is why I have a whole box of "samples". I would do a square of some new technique that I've come across. I never finished a complete item for a very long time. That hasn't hurt me. I was more interested in learning all about knitting and how it works. And now, I don't worry about patterns too much, because they ALL need some correction. But I have enough experience because of all my swatches that I can spot a "mistake" and know how it should be to get what I wanted. I do not comprehend someone that hasn't a clue how to make something longer, for example, than what the pattern said!! Unbelieveable!! But it takes all kinds, as someone said.

I now spend a lot of time spinning. Again, I have boxes of finished skeins -- not planning on becoming anything, just skeins. And that is okay too. I love the process of spinning, and of making a yarn out of a handful of fluff. Why does it need to be anything else other than a good-looking skein of yarn?!

So I guess you can say I am process-orientated. But I do like a finished object too! :-)

akkamaddi's picture

I think that you are right,

I think that you are right, *if* you correlate it with age. In the 50's, 60's, and 70's, engineering and mechanical endeavors were "man's work". Similarly, fashion was the responsibility of women, while men wore black or khaki pants, a white shirt, and a tie bought by and approved by the wife (or what the boss wears).

As much as I agree with you, and I know some women older than I who are definitely "technical" knitters, I think your idea will break down with younger generations. I think people in college and high school these days have much less of a notion of what men and women "should" do, and are also used to much of their world being technology, which must be understood to be manipulated.

(And I recently hit the big "four-ugh!", so I'm not calling anyone old!)

Peace