N.Y. Knit Out

Jack's picture

I'm happy to read that Martin had such a good time at N.Y. Knit Out yesterday. Obviously the difference in our responses comes from the fact that he was an active participant while I was a passive observer. I was expecting to see a lot more "knitting as an Art form" than I did. (This is New York City, after all.) The weather didn't cooperate. It was much too sunny and hot in the City to want to be touching wool, and Union Square is not the green oasis I remember it being the last time I was there. I came away remembering three or four items that I saw. One, a big, "thingy" poncho in browns, as handsome and impressive because of the man who was wearing it as it was in itself. Another favorite of mine was a woman's hat that seemed to be made of preserved newspaper, with a (perhaps) chrochet hat-band. I strolled leasurely through the Knit Out area three or four times. The "show and tell" program might have been fun to watch for awhile if I had spotted a comfortable vantage point from which to observe. When I described it to a friend last evening, he commented, "Sounds like an AA meeting." I saw an awful lot of stuff that made me think to myself,"WTF!". I was begining to remind myself of Queer Joe's blog. The long lines of people waiting in the heat and sun for knitting and crochet instruction were admirable and a real surprise to me. (Good on you, Martin!) I wasn't expecting all of the commercial booths, but when all is said and done, the printed resource guide from the Craft Yarn Council of America, is probably the most valuable thing I took away with me. Make no mistake, I think it's a good event to make availible. I'm glad I went once, but I probably won't return again without good reason.

Comments

Oh dear Jack, what a shame

Oh dear Jack, what a shame that you did not the Knit Out experience. Union Square has improved over the last 10 years. Perhaps it looks parched after this long dry summer that we have had in NYC. Areas were closed off to the public for several seasons to allow the grass to grow back and the south end has been totally repaved. The north end will be getting revamped soon including the pavilion.
Although knitting is extemely popular today it has caught the inspiration of top designers like Nicole Farhi and Edina Ronay like it did in the late 70's and 80's. Before I'm shot down down in flames those designers were really popular in London when I lived there. Nicole has a store here in NY but the knitting line is a small, very small part of it.
As I see it and it is only my opinion despite the proliferation of yarn stores with beautiful but expensive yarns. Knitting is a hobby. It is a backlash to the computer age. Despite people I know and respect enjoying knitting for themselves and loved ones the objects being created are by and large for personal enjoyment. Until the big names come along and really inspire the fashion scene with knitted clothing it is going to remain very much a home grown past time. Not that there is anything wrong with that. A sweater is a sweater is a sweater. But, until a brand like Comme de Garcon, Issey Miyake, Vivienne Westwood or Alexander McQueen really shakes up the knitting scene it is going to stay very humdrum. The preppy knit wear by Ralph Lauren, Donna Karen etc. is still very popular. The whole design scene needs to be shaken up. We as knitters need to demand more creative, exciting designs by the like of Debbie Bliss, Nicke Epstien to name just two. 
Oh boy I hope that I won't be ostracized for my venting. I love knitting very much and enjoy creating items out of 2 sticks and some yarn. For now I enjoy the designs of Debbie Bliss et al. I am still challenged interpeting their patterns sometimes and have to rip out 3 or 5 times before I get it right. As for Entrelac I will put that aside for a while longer.
We are all free to design and create so let's see your stuff guys!

Knit away, knit away