Do you knit in public?

82% (134 votes)
18% (29 votes)
Total votes: 163


Simpawknits's picture

I must admit that there are times when I feel a little nervous knitting in public but I love promoting the craft and what better way to do so?

michaelpthompson's picture

I knit in public all the time and almost all the comments I get are quite positive. I knit at concerts, I knit on the bus, I knit at the school where I teach. Most people seem quite interested and it leads to many pleasant conversations.

"All knitting is just one stitch at a time."

Tallguy's picture

Oh yes, of course!! Nothing wrong with that. No one has ever said anything inappropriate, but many are curious to see what I'm knitting. Some will say they didn't know people still knit! (they live in a cave) I remember one time a little kid watching me on the bus, asking his mother what I was doing and the mother trying to sush him up and pretend that she didn't see me! It was great fun! :-) I don't think any one would dare say anything -- not when I have long sharp implements in my hands!

PhilNmtl's picture

I confess . . . . . . .

that my rationale for knitting in public has nothing to do with promoting the craft at all. I like to knit..... and if I I happen to be in public and have the time to do something that I like, then it is usually knitting. PLanes and trains are my favourite places.

AKQGuy's picture

In the words of a good friend, "The vast majority of people are going to make assumptions about you just at first glance so you might as well give them something good to base their assumptions upon." and with that I hope they at least like the color selection of my yarn choice.

Tom Hart's picture

On the bus, in parks, at work during meetings and on breaks. Frequently I knit more during the day than I do at home at night.

akkamaddi's picture

Actually, the most notable comment was from an employee (I think a manager) at the previously-Saturn dealer when I was having my car worked on. He was walking by (had glanced a couple times), stopped and asked, "Whatcha working on?"

"Oh, a scarf." I held it up.

"A gift for someone up north?"

I laughed, "Yep!" I live in Florida, so knit scarves are not a common sight. The ones worn for fashion are usually thin cotton, silk, or a thin synthetic.

(Though, I have yarn for the wheat ear pattern, but four other working projects at the moment.)

Spicemanknit's picture

Yes I do and I really don't care who sees me. Several months ago, my partner had major surgery so I brought my knitting. NO ONE never said a word in a waiting room full of people, except for an elderly lady who happen to bring her knitting as well. When I'm in a situation like this, I cannot read, really don't want to watch TV, so I have to keep my hands busy with knitting.

bobinthebul's picture

I do; my favorite place is a cafe here where I meet with friends sometimes and knit together, and on the hour-long ferry boat ride from the center up to where I live. Planes are also great and luckily I've never had my needles confiscated. A couple of friends have said things like, "You know, people don't look kindly on that" and "If you did that back in Sivas, they'd kill you!" But nobody has ever said anything bad; usually they take a look or two, and that's it. One woman seemed completely fascinated as I was turning a heel on a sock one night; that was the most outward attention it ever attracted.

Spicemanknit's picture

WHAT! I could get kill just by doing knitting in Sivas Turkey? ( I assumed this is where you are talking about) What do they do with serious crimes?

bobinthebul's picture

Well, I don't think he was serious about them actually killing me. They just would see it as very odd. Actually when Turks see something really unfamiliar, as long as it doesn't fall into some "sacred" area of morals involving religion, family or sexual morals outright, they're usually more curious than hostile. The guy who said "You know in Turkey, people don't look well on that" later said "well, actually I used to knit scarves..." So there you go!

There's a knitting site rather unfortunately named "Anne Kaz" (Mother Goose) which has this bit:

The text says:

"Over the weekend I was at my mother's. Mother and her daughter in law are knitting freaks, and finish working at 10:00. And then it's knitting till evening. I support them by getting them patterns from the internet. So this was one of those typical weekends, until my husband didn't like my knitting technique. In the photo above, my husband is giving me a knitting lesson. He said, "don't wrap the yarn around your finger, tension it between your fingers like this." In our family we wrap the yarn around our finger as we knit, we can't do it any other way..:P

Next picture: Now my husband is teaching my brother-in-law to knit.

Next picture: So now my brother-in-law's got the knitting bug. Eh, what do they say, it's good to learn everything, even if you don't use it.:

But what was interesting to me was the comments below. They were all positive, with statements like "there are parts of our country where men knit, and there's nothing wrong with it, why did you blur their faces?"

Bill Carl's picture

Welcome to U.S.A. Sometimes we complain about things in this country. But we do have our freedom to choose what we want and prefer to do. So welcome to America, Enjoy. Keep your self in stitches and keep on knitting.

Thomasknits's picture

On the Subway! Every day. I'm pretty sure I would die on the subway without my knitting.


MMario's picture

I just succumb to my New England upbringing and hate to waste possibly productive time by having idle hands.

MMario - I'm not divorced from reality - we're having a trial separation

teejtc's picture

I tend to knit when I fly - which is only a couple of times a year. I also sometimes knit when I'm in huge meetings (rather smaller ones that require more direct attention), although I'm on one little taskforce that has 10 people and 3 or 4 of us are knitters!

I don't do a lot of other public knitting since the rest of my public time usually includes one or both of my daughters and knitting isn't really a possibility.

Grace and peace,

Joe-in Wyoming's picture

At least until they also are knitters. Imagine the fun conversations that will trigger...Dad and the daughters all knitting at once.

Books, knitting, cats, fountain pens...Life is Good.

TheKnittingMill's picture

I knit in public all the time. It's a great conversation starter, and it's fun to see how curious people are. It's really cool when I run into another knitter. One time I taught an electrical engineer on a plane ride how to knit and purl after he expressed interest in always wanting to learn. He couldn't wait to get home to buy needles and yarn.

Joe-in Wyoming's picture

I always have my knitting with me, even though I may not knit all the time. In fact, many friends and family are Amazed when I don't have it along. Otherwise, I've knit in public for many years. The vast majority of the comments have been quite favorable.

Books, knitting, cats, fountain pens...Life is Good.

Bill Carl's picture

Hi :
I am new to this group. I do my own wool. From sheep to what ever it turns into. I really enjoy dyeing and spinning my own wool. I always have my knitting with me wherever I go. Almost like an addict. I just can't be with out it. I make all of my gifts. Just finished a Voyager hat for a friend, who is a civil war re-enactor. Have been knitting since I was 5 years old.

Joe-in Wyoming's picture

Welcome to the group. I look forward to hearing more about your projects. I really like Voyager hats and have yet to knit one. Take care.

Books, knitting, cats, fountain pens...Life is Good.

Simpawknits's picture

Welcome to the group! I know what you mean. I sometimes wonder if I'll ever get to the point of having a panic attack without knitting close at hand. So far I haven't but there's always tomorrow . . .

BrentGC's picture

I have to say that I pulled out my knitting while sitting in my favorite lunchtime restaurant yesterday. After spending the weekend knitting with all the guys at the SEMKR, it didn't seem that big of a deal! I was a bit nervous...but I got braver as I knitted on.

And...the restaurant didn't fall down...the patrons did not stop what they were doing and stare...and the world didn't end. :-)

I'll do it again today, if I can!!!!


Joe-in Wyoming's picture

Yaaayyyy!! I knew you'd come along just fine. Congrats.

Books, knitting, cats, fountain pens...Life is Good.

Simpawknits's picture

Way to go, Brent! W00t!

brucedow's picture

I have very little shame, of any kind.
i knit in public any time, any where!

Simpawknits's picture

I love reading these comments! Thanks for all the contributions to this topic.

hudson's picture

I whip out the needles at PURL in soho but that's a knitting haven.. funny how some people just kinda stop ..
uhhh.. and then they start asking questions...

and i wouldn't go for it on the subway.. but plan on working on a project when I'm on a direct flight to Hawaii mid Feb..

tgdoralpino's picture

yep at work all the time peoples know me for that

age of shame is over !o!'s picture

For a long time, I was sure I was the only man on the planet who knits. I know it's irrational and it irritates me, but I have to admit I'm usually too intimidated to knit in public. It makes no sense. What are they going to do? Beat me up? I'm 63 years old, for goodness' sake. I'll have to push myself to do that.

Don't fetch. Don't beg. Be your own dog.

Theknittingbuilder's picture

Haven't tried knitting in public yet, mainly because i haven't been out to a place where i get time to do it. The missus knits as well and we have no worries freestyling in public! Rock on with knitting in cafes. I do have to admit im the only bloke at our knitting club and that a bit daunting at 1st.

thomasmc's picture

I haven't yet, and don't know anyone else who knits. We are going to Amsterdam in May, I figure I will "come out of the closet" then and knit on the plane. It's that, or die of boredom on such a long flight.

A few times on long train rides and on flights.

yowek's picture

When I came upon this forum topic, it sparked a memory from long ago.
Even before I started to knit, I had this desire to challenge people's stereotypes.

One way to do this was to imagine seeing a burly construction worker (still in his grubby clothes, but with his hands clean) get on the subway at the end of the day, open his lunch box, and take out some fine, soft, wool and his needles. If anyone asked, he'd reply with a smile, "My wife is expecting, and I thought I'd surprise her with a pair of hand-knitted booties for the baby." I would love to see the expression on the faces of those around, upon hearing those words.

Dgrendahl's picture

I knit in public but not often. I attend a mixed knitting group which meets at a local yarn shop. There are about 4 men which come in of and on. Love it though.