Guest Post by David Di Giacomo
On the eve of Espace Tricot’s first Men’s Knit Night I thought I would take some time to write a few words about what the evening will mean to me…
Growing up, I was always making things. In kindergarten I was gluing paper plates and construction paper together. In school, I drew cartoons, played instruments, and tried to take artistic pictures. Knitting, and many of the other fiber crafts, are just other ways to relax and express our creativity. On top of that, we get to make beautiful (and fully functional) works of art. The only difference is that the fiber crafts, at least in modern times, are a predominantly female pursuit.
Sometimes we’re made fun of, but most of the time people are simply amazed and curious to see us knitting. At the end of the day, we’re just making fabric out of sticks and some string – something that is entirely gender neutral, something anyone can do. It is all just about cultural expectations and what is considered “appropriate” for guys to be doing. It can be challenging to go against those expectations, and it’s really nice to have a place where we, as male knitters, can get together and hang out.
Every year in places around the US (and even abroad), Men’s Knitting Retreats are held. The one closest to us, occurs close to Albany, New York, over the long Victoria Holiday weekend. Last year, I had the privilege of attending my first retreat. The experience is hard to describe to anyone who hasn’t attended. But for anyone who has, it can be quite unforgettable. It’s a chance to meet amazing people, learn a bunch of new skills, and make lifelong friends.
It was at the same retreat where Espace Tricot, among other vendors, generously donated a yarn kit for our giveaways. Every one who received a gift felt extremely grateful that there are businesses out there that recognize and support the event and what it means to us guys.
Over the last four years I have had a great time meeting a host of amazing men and women involved in the fiber arts – we share a common bond through our hobby and our creativity. But I was excited when I was approached about the idea of a men’s night – it is an opportunity to have a space and community that are like the larger knitting retreats, only locally and a little more often than once a year.
Thanks, Lisa and Melissa, for making this possible! If you as a male knitter would like to attend men’s knit nights, contact the store and we’ll put you on our email distribution list. For more information about official men’s knitting retreats held throughout the year, visit http://www.mensknittingretreat.com/
Espace Tricot’s first Men’s Knit Night takes place tomorrow evening, Wednesday, February 29th @ 6:00pm.