Ballband Dishcloth Mania: The Fire Of Competition

Peaches & Creme Ballband Dishcloth by you.

Peaches & Creme Ballband Dishcloth by you.

Peaches & Creme Ballband Dishcloth by you.

Peaches & Creme Ballband Dishcloth by you.

Peaches & Creme Ballband Dishcloth by you.

The Peaches & Creme group on Ravelry is sponsoring a Ballband dishcloth competition. It ends on November 15th, and whoever has the most ballband dishcloths, wins! I’m plugging away, turning a box of Peaches & Creme cotton into dishcloth after dishcloth.

 I know that I’ve already got more dishcloths than I am going to use, so in the not-so-distant future, I will be wrapping these up with a nice bar of soap and sending them to cherished friends and possibly my grandfather, but he probably uses a dishwasher. However, I am continually mystified by two things in the knitting world.

  1. People who feel obligated to knit one item for everyone in their immeadiate family. I don’t get it. This may be directly related to the fact that if I just knitted for my siblings and parents, I would have to knit at least 12 items. That’s not including my two nephews, my one niece, my brother-in-law, or my sister’s boyfriend.
  2. People who insist on knitting for ungrateful, nasty people

 The second one puzzles me the most. Impossible to please mother-in-laws are gifted complex, stunning lace shawls. Picky fathers are given handknit socks. And the results are reported by sad knitters everywhere: somehow, the miracle of a handknit gift did not soften the heart of their family Scrooge. The wooly goodness of a scarf did not result in a spontaneous personality change, ending with cranky Aunt Eloise bursting into tears and saying that her nasty, demanding ways were just because she didn’t feel loved enough, but now, due to this handknit miracle, she would be a new person. And leave her enormous fortune entirely to you.

 Maybe knitters put too much faith into the power of knitting. Nasty, demanding, irritating people that never liked any of your gifts before? They’re not going to change. No matter how hard you work, no matter how expensive the yarn, it doesn’t matter. They get a charge out of rejecting people. It makes them feel powerful and that’s just that.

 Meanwhile, there are wonderful, lovely people that you can knit for to your heart’s content. I must admit, I am a selfish knitter. I rarely knit for other people and any potential giftee is carefully screened. They must meet some strict qualifications.

  1. Do they routinely prostrate themselves before an image of myself, wrought in gold or ivory?
  2. Do they admire my handknits and plead for me to knit them something just like it—and they actually remember 2 days later that they want it?
  3. Do they routinely steal or ‘borrow’ my handknits because they want something nice to wear?
  4. Are they physically attractive?

 Maybe I’m kidding on the last one. Maybe.


October 13, 2008. Tags: , , , , . Knittin' Porn, works-in-progress.


  1. pdxknitterati replied:

    I’m a pretty selfish knitter, too. I knit for me, me, me! And occasionally a new baby or family member, but not because someone requested/demanded it. No, usually it’s a gift, so there’s no pressure to finish it, in case I decide I hate the project. Are you in the selfish knitters group on Rav? I am, but only lurk occasionally. There’s too much traffic for me to keep up with the forum! You are not alone…

  2. Michelle replied:

    I knit a lot of baby hats, and that’s pretty much the extent of my knitting for other people. Small, easy, quick projects. Yeah, I’ve knit some “big” things for my dad and sister, and a baby blanket here and there, but for the most part, I keep it small. I still get to do something nice and I’m not too put out of they don’t appreciate the item like they should.

  3. jinniver replied:

    Your post reminded me of a long running thread on Needlework on the Net on Ravelry, where someone posted for help choosing a gift to knit for her picky, never-satisfied mother-in-law–because she “had” to knit something for social reasons. Since when did being a knitter = being a doormat? Right now, I’ve got a pretty short list of people I’ll knit for: my children, myself, my baby niece (because my sister-in-law loves what I knit for her), and the future daughter of a knitting friend…but that last one is my choice. I offered, and if, in the end, the mom never puts the sweater on her, that’s ok. I am about to branch out into knitting for other family–I’ve got minor Christmas plans for mom and both sisters-in-law. But again, if it doesn’t work out, they hate it and never wear it, no problem. I made the choice to knit them something they didn’t ask for, and I’ll know not to do it again. (Besides, they all live in a different state from me, so I’ll probably never know if they wear it or not!)

  4. Jasmin replied:

    I think we may share a soul. I make people BEG for knits, and even then, it’s when I deem them worthy that they *MIGHT* get something.

  5. quirkyknitgirl replied:

    I suppose it depends. I knit for my aunt, who isn’t very grateful for handknit items. BUT she isn’t very grateful for store bought items either, and at least this way I get enjoyment out of knitting her gifts. Plus, I knit for the rest of my family (just my parents, really) so leaving her out would be a bigger slap in the face. Then again, in a small family it’s not as big of hassle to knit for everyone.

  6. Merenwen replied:

    I’ve got one gift in progress for my cousin Justin. He’s getting a Triforce scarf. I’ll make a headband for Breanne, Justin’s sister/another one of my cousins. The other two cousins aren’t getting anything handknit. They’ve changed a bit, but I still have a weak connection with them because of their mother (my least favourite aunt) and my grandparents, because cousins #3 (Jesse) and #4 (Becca) are the favourite grandchildren, so… yeah. I was going to make the Triforce scarf for my brother, but he really doesn’t deserve it… so Justin’s getting a scarf and Breanne’s getting a headband. My sister Katie might get something handknit, too.

  7. Merenwen replied:

    Oh, and by the way… pretty colours! I’m gonna make a reusable Swiffer sheet soon, to clean up the Jack Russell Terrier hair :p

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