If you’re a knitter and you’re on Instagram you know what this post is about. I had to write about it but at the same time I’ve struggled with how to approach it. I do not want to get into any sort of discussion about politics here on the blog. What I will say is that my reaction to this week’s election results totally took me by surprise. I quickly learned that my Facebook feed was not a good place to be, but Instagram, that was safe. My feed is nothing but yarn, wool, and all related items. As Wednesday went on I started seeing a few cool things.
First a few people were suggesting doing some random pattern gifting. The idea was to stalk a friends’ favorites and gift them the patterns. Excellent! I was all in. When I got home that night I promptly hopped on to Ravelry. That’s when I realized that it was harder to put into practice than it sounds. What I ended up doing was sending a copy of the Glorien Cowl by Kino Knits to a few of my friends who I knew were having a hard day. I also gifted the Maribou by Kino Knits to a friend. I’ve done some tech editing for Kino Knits and thought it would be nice to support her while surprising my friends. In return she gifted me a really cool sock pattern.
What then started happening has turned into quite the worldwide movement. I believe it was started by sherlock_knits on Instagram, and I’m going to point out that she’s from England. She posted that she felt there was a need for something positive and kind so she offered to knit a pair of socks or other accessory for one of her followers. The only thing she asked in return was to repost her image and offer to pay it forward and knit something for one of your followers. With that, the #knitterspayitforward hashtag was born.
It showed up on my feed sometime Wednesday afternoon so I reposted that evening. For awhile on Wednesday and Thursday I was trying to keep track of all the posts and I was up to over 20 offers and I could not keep up. As I’m writing this there are over 4,500 posts with the hashtag. The offers range from people knitting something to yarn to patterns to stitch markers to project bags. I’ve won a hand knit hat from someone in France. I will be doing my own drawing tomorrow. New posts are still popping up.
I realize if you tell a non-knitter about this they may think you are crazy. I mean, let’s face it, getting a free pattern really isn’t going to change the world. But for me, and I think a lot of other knitters, it helped get us through a tough week. It felt like being wrapped in a big, woolly hug all week because my feed was just filled with these posts. We knitters created a loving bubble in an the otherwise tough social media world. And if you were looking for a judgment free zone, this was it. It doesn’t even really matter if I “win” anything else (although, a sweater’s quantity of La Bien Amie yarn would certainly be nice 🙂 ) It was really just what I needed this week – a place where everyone was just concerned about being nice and spreading some joy in the world.
Check out the hashtag – some of the discounts and giveaways are good through next week so it might not be too late to jump in. And, other thing I would point out. There is a KAL starting on December 1st which is being hosted by Christina Campbell. I did a KAL with her earlier this year and it was a lot of fun. This is going to be a Peace-along. It’s running 12/1 through 12/21 and it’s a cowl and with it she will be sending peace tips and her thought is if we get enough knitters focusing on peace maybe we can find some. And, I think given what I’ve seen this week she might be on to something. Go check it out – I’m going to be checking my stash tomorrow to see what I can find.
*Image above created my MochimochiLand 🙂