So the kids and I took ourselves off to a knitting class at our local library a couple of days ago. It was arranged and run by the local knitting guild for kids and I wanted to support them.
Now let it be said I have always thought this whole "it is not your Grandma's knitting" is just total crap but I also think it needs to be said that many of the old guard need a good boot up the bum.
While we were there a young new knitter was struggling and it was decided that because she was left-handed she was having an extra tough time. I then piped up with "perhaps she should have a go at Continental". Apparently not. Apparently she needs to learn the "right" way and then she can go on to try the other (less valuable) ways of knitting. I of course argued a little. I was very firmly put in my place that it was extra important that she was taught the right way and no other way at present. The long and short of it was that I started to teach her Continental but too late the damage was done. She struggled with that also. She lamented that she should go back to the right way and perhaps she wasn't good enough to knit. She stopped.
Another woman spoke up (she was a parent) and said that she knits completely differently from everyone here and because of that and all of the comments she receives she doesn't knit much and she didn't think she should be the one to teach her kids. I asked if the end result looked the same. The answer was yes. Well then it is the right way isn't it. No.
I wanted to scream. but here is the thing all of these women were really lovely, really helpful, they bought yarn and needles to give away to the kids and they truly believed in what they were doing. And maybe there is something to passing on the local knitting style but at what cost? How many knitters do you lose and still feel like you have won? Do they have the right to discriminate against other artists and crafters? Why is this so different from other forms of discrimination? (I won't tell you what they thought about crochet). Am I wrong to feel so cranky about all of this still? They are doing the class again next week. Is it wrong to be daydreaming about a massive sit in of rebel continental knitters?