When I first started knitting the answer was simple. No. I didn’t have the speed or the skill level. The problem is, once you can do something beyond the very basic knit/purl abilities, non-knitters think you know it all and assume you will make them anything they ask for.
But how about now? Now my skill level is up and learning new ones isn’t hard. Will I knit something for you now?
In all honesty the answer is still more often than not, no. And here are my first set of reasons:
- I can’t make it. The pattern/picture of whatever you want me to work out how to make is actually crotchet, not knitted. I know a tiny bit of crotchet, but it is a completely different skill to knitting and I do not have the skill level to make that for you. I can probably work out a knitted approximation, but it won’t be what you want.
- You’ve sent me a dull pattern. While the outcome is very stylish and striking, the actual techniques involved are rather unexciting. You need to remember I knit for pleasure, and while the outcome is a part of that, it’s more important that I find the actual process engaging and exciting. Don’t pressure me into doing something that makes my hobby a chore.
- ‘I’ll pay you for it.’ No, no you won’t. This is one of the most common things people say when I say I don’t want to knit that for them. If you have asked me to make something I do want to make, covering the cost of the wool is a pretty nice thing to do. However. If you think you’re going to pay me for my time, you are very much mistaken. Say I manage to knit you a hat in 5 hours. Quite a basic hat. UK minimum wage is £6.70 an hour. That’s £33.50 you would be paying me for my time, not including materials. You probably want it to be made out of something pretty nice, since you’re spending all this money on it, so let’s round that up to £40. And remember this is not, taking into account that what I’m doing is skilled work, and I should be paid more than minimum wage. Do you really want to pay me £40 for a hat? I would much rather give my knitting away than be underpaid for it.
- ‘I told my friend you know how to knit and they were wondering if you’d make them a…’ I rarely knit things for people I care about, they’re the people I love knitting for. I’ve still never knitted something for my mum, who has made me two patchwork quilts. I knit things for people who I care about, when I want to knit that particular item. Unless there is a really special reason they really want a hand knitted item, the answer is a resounding no.
There are more reasons, but they are for another day. See you next week!