Tuesday, March 04, 2014

Miniature Entry: Intern

I decided that before one of this week's finished pieces goes to its forever home, it needs a little extra love. Pride in your finishing isn't everything, but it's almost everything.

I brought it with me here, to the coffee shop where I do so much work that we call it my field office. Between bouts of pattern writing I ripped out the imperfect seam and started sewing a new one.

A nice little girl, maybe six years old, came in with her mother for a hot chocolate. I liked her immediately, as you often do take to a person whose drink of choice is also yours.

As they sipped and chatted, it was pretty obvious the girl was curious about my work. The mother quietly told her to stop staring, but I asked if she'd like a closer look.

She stood at my shoulder and I showed her what I was doing with the needle. I chanted a little bit for her, the way I always do in my head when I sew by hand. Up, around, down, through. Up, around, down, through.

"Oh!" she said, after about six stitches. "I get it. You have to do it the same way, in the same places, all the way to the end. And that's how you win."

Kid, you're hired.

work

72 comments:

Cosmo DK said...

How else would young folks learn? Thank you for "indulging" her curiosity.

BillJ said...

She studying with the best!

RubyC said...

And that dear Franklin is how we find the curiosity and eagerness to learn. Kudos to you and to her. She had the best of teachers.

Jenn said...

Fantastic!

sewmuchfun4 said...

That's so great! I'm guessing she will be a "process" knitter.

Ann

Genevieve Wimp-McCann said...

A most lovely note. Thank you Franklin!

Tiggywinkleknits said...

Love it!

Be said...

Community Music! Rhyme and rhythm are the best enablers of learning.

Elena Jardiniz said...

YES! I'm allergic to children, well known to be. However if a child is curious, if it is civil (or trying to be) and wants to learn I will give it the same consideration and attention I'll give an adult. People of all ages deserve civility, it's so very rare. And kids KNOW they don't know, their questions are never stupid or grandstanding.

Mary Enright said...

We had a similar experience with a little girl in our knitting group who was out with her father for a hot chocolate. She was curious and said that she sewed, but that didn't look like sewing and she didn't know what it was. I put my project into her hands and guided them to make a few stitches. The next week she and her father were back with their own yarn and needles and asked if we would show them how to knit! They were members of our group for about 18 months until the little girl's school schedule changed. I really miss both of them.

Judy11 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Judy11 said...

So nice to see you influence and encourage a new knitter. She will never forget her first stitches or you for teaching her. You did good Franklin!!!!!!

Bente Simone said...

Lovely. Small ones and their curiosity are so much fun and it is so important that we help them learn them indulge them as you do here.

Veronika said...

What a sweet story! Catering to children's curiosity is the greatest favour anyone can do. What we learn and experience as kids, we never forget.
I just heard a story about a teacher who took his class on a field trip. They encountered a crow with a broken wing. The children became so engaged that the teacher stopped, and they talked about how to splint the wing, and they did what they could. The kids talked about that bird for weeks. More than 20 years later the teacher happened upon one of his former students, who told him that incident with the bird had inspired her to become a doctor.

Deborah said...

I love absolutely everything about that story: the child's honest curiosity, the mother's concern about her manners, your encouragement, her enthusiasm and "eureka!" moment-- it's just great.
These miniature entries are wonderful, a bit like getting postcards in the days people sent postcards.

Pretty Knitty said...

Win, Win! Thank you for sharing your lovely moment...I'll be smiling all day on that one! :)

Janis said...

And your prize, should you win, is a nice hat, sweater, pair of mittens, blanket, or other lovely, warm item in a pleasant color and texture. :-)

Kate (KnitsInClass) said...

Winning! Her statement is full of awesome.
As the mother of 3 (very curious) children, I love it when other adults respond kindly to their inquisitive natures.

LisaRae7 said...

Lovely! A crafter is born!

lindaroo said...

That is so adorable.
You, and the little girl.

margaret in manhattan said...

brilliant! we all need a little intern like that by our sides ...

maryskid said...

These little snippets you provide us are like perfect bites of pastry or a bracing shot of espresso... delightful!

I can't begin to tell you how pleased I am to be taking your class at Squam in June (I squeaked in when some unfortunate soul was forced to cancel-I am beyond giddy!)

And then you posted your class schedule in Asheville, NC on facebook and, well, stalker isn't the right term, but I signed up for three of your classes.

Lee said...

Hi Franklin! I know this is unrelated, but I'm hoping you don't mind me asking you this favor. My sister sent me a link about knitted sweaters needed for penguins that have been in oil spills, so they don't ingest the oil trying to clean themselves off. The request is from The Penguin Foundation. I'm afraid if I try to put a link in the post the blog wizards will think it's spam, but if you google penguin sweaters oil spill there's a number of links. I'm going to post this on Rachael Herron's, The Yarn Harlot's, and Doc Steph's blogs as well. Could I trouble you to tweet or post about this? I believe in the power of the knitting community to help change the world into a better place!
Lee/aka AreYouKnittingMe

Lee said...

oy, never mind on the penguin post. Doc Steph just tweeted a website that says that the sweaters aren't really needed. I feel silly! fwiw, the article was from yesterday, so I thought it was legit....especially since it was from a news web site.
http://www.abc.net.au/local/audio/2014/03/05/3957423.htm

my apologies!

=Tamar said...

Re the young girl's comment: Words to live by!

Lizy Tish said...

Love it!

Jean Tepper said...

We are all winners! Great story Franklin.

Jean Tepper said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Cindi said...

I wish I could sip hot chocolate, stand behind you and learn to sew a seam! Lucky little girl.

Merry Karma said...

Smart kid!

Caroline said...

Franklin -

I have an idea for a cartoon caption, but I'm not cartoonist. I'd happily give it to you, but I don't want to leave it in the comments.
If you want it, you'll need to contact me. I promise it's real, it's socially polite, politically correct, and also, with the right cartoon, funny. Also, I promise never to spam you or reveal your address to anyone else.

Beth said...

My son attends OT once a week and I always take my knitting. I've had several of the children watch me while I knit. Most of these kids have a sensory processing disorder, so it is wonderful to see them being engaged and asking such good questions. I've even had a couple of the moms comment that they need to start knitting again.

Ericka said...

I thought of you the other day. I was wandering around the wilds of craig's list, hoping to find a pottery wheel, and found a posting for raw alpaca wool. I would pat it and then probably squish it into clay to make texture, but you'd make it beautiful. :-)

CeltChick said...

Last year on a visit to family far away, I had a chance to watch the neices' tumbling class. Of course I had my knitting along. I think every child under 12 came over to watch (they take brief breaks for hydration) at one time or another -- the neice who's to receive the garment was about to bust with pride in her knitting Auntie. A glorious day! BTW, have to any hints about encouraging a retired gentleman to take up yarncraft?

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Anonymous said...

Priceless comment from the little one! Obviously she reasons that when you get to the end successfully you level up - which is true. Also, I love that your scissors look vaguely like a paleolithic fertility talisman (thinking Venus of Willendorf).

-muumi

kmkat said...

I had to scroll back up to look at your scissors after that Venus of Willendorf comment. It's true! Just look at those thighs...

Ahem...

That little girl is priceless! She will be a success in life (just like you)!

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Grace said...

I love that she saw it as a game and her mind figured out how to win. Imagine if she saw the end project and what a prize you get for finishing! I'm a crocheter. I don't know how to knit...yet. But I just put down your little book "It Itches." And related to every bit of it even As a crocheter. So utterly hilarious. Very much enjoyed it.

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