Tuesday, March 03, 2009


Yet another distraction to keep you from wondering where I am, and what I'm doing....

Your Word is "Think"

You see life as an amazing mix of possibilities, ideas, and fascinations.

And sometimes you feel like you don't have enough time to take it all in.

You love learning. Whether you're in school or not, you're probably immersed in several subjects right now.

When you're not learning, you're busy reflecting. You think a lot about the people you know and the things you've experienced.

Isn't it funny how little online quizzes can be so on target it is nearly frightening? Think. hmmm. How apropos. I've mention here before that I have journals I call my think books. I have files on my computer named think. I have a think tag in my Ravelry queue. I envy people with jobs in think tanks, although the subject matter of many of those would not be for me. giggle/snort

Just a note to clarify, the little copper bowl in the last post was not knitted. It was worked in a technique called "Viking Knitting" but it's not really knitting....confusing, I know. I imagine some anthropologist/archaeologist not extremely learned in the needle arts called it that one day and the name stuck. To him/her 's credit, the end product does look like knitting, and whether the term was coined cuz he/she thought it was knitting or just looked like knitting I can't say. I could prob'ly render a very close facsimile of Viking Knitting by using two needles but I didn't. I could also create other nearly indiscernible replicas using other known techniques and therein lies my profound interest.

IMHO Viking Knitting is more closely related to knotless netting, or even embroidery than knitting (pedantically speaking). For those of you familiar with embroidery Viking Knitting is akin to a series of the ceylon stitches but worked in a spiral 3-dimensionally, thus having no long loop on the back of the fabric. Does that make sense to you embroidery people?

Now for you knitting peeps....anybody got Debbie New's book "Unexpected Knitting"? (if you don't you really should) If I'm not mistaken, and I can't confirm this cuz a friend has my copy right now, BUT...check out her chapter on "Virtual Knitting". I'm fairly certain, in that chapter she is manipulating the yarn similarly, if not in the exact same manner, one would work the ceylon stitch, or do some flat Viking Knitting. I could be wrong it's been a while since I've read that chapter.

But now let's take it a step further. Let's think on it some more. What and how are techniques named? Are they named for the manner in which the material is worked, ie what kind of tool is used? Or are they named for the characteristics of the end product? Or how about how the actual "path" if you will of the yarn/fiber/thread/string? Named for procedural methods? Does the actual material used have any bearing on the naming of the technique? Could any single technique have more than one "known" or "accepted" name? To all of these questions, an many more like them I've found the answer to be often yes.

Let's water this down to a really simple example that I don't think will get me into any trouble. :o) (please take this next part with a grain of salt in that I'm not going to spend time making sure every little nit-picky thing is 100% accurate, I'm just trying to make a point and if I mis-speak don't hold it against me just over look it as I try to make my point) Some people knit with the working yarn in their right hand and some people knit with the working yarn in their left hand. (some do both by I digress) The path the yarn follows throughout the finished fabric is identical, and yet there are many names of just what kind of knitting is being done because of the way that yarn path was achieved. ie, continental, english, german, american etc.....oh yeah don't forget portugesse knitting, but that uses hooks and not needles. ;-) Remember....I said the path of the yarn in the finished fabric....I'm not talking about the crossed stitch fabric, just the bare bones plain knit and purls oriented "correctly".

So what's my point? My point is there are many names for several methods that produce the same end product. As with the Viking knitting, I could use a embroidery needle and work the same stitch on a 3-D surface, or maybe use a shuttle and "net" a piece in mid-air. What if I'm making a reverse half hitch knot? Is it still Viking Knitting? Am I doing macrame'? If I have a shuttle in my hand am I tatting?

I find this sort of inter-connectivity of "linear manipulation" fascinating. It is why I hesitate to call myself a knitter, crocheter, embroiderer, macrame'er, weaver, stitcher, etc. All those names are so limiting. It is why I find the "battles" between knitters and crocheter so nauseating, and the chicken vs egg debates tiresome. If pushed to label my passion I'd like to say I'm a linear manipulator, although without explanation it doesn't mean much to anyone but me. Just as the name of the this blog doesn't mean much to most people, most prob'ly think I misspelled "activity". LOL given my penchant for spelling errors and typos I can understand that. But no, it actually was spelled that way on purpose, cuz to me "Stringativity" is a noun meaning 'the relative natures of string manipulation'. (string being used here as the most generic description of any linear substance.) I couldn't in conscience call this a knitting blog or a craft blog, or even a fiber blog, any and all of those thing would be misleading.

Yes, admittedly so, this blog has been a little heavy on knitting content for a while, and most recently on wire work, but it will change. It always does. Perhaps, at some point, some topics will be revisited in the future, who knows what will tickle my fancy on any given day at any given hour......sort of like "a gnat in sandstorm"......unable to steer my destiny in the swirling winds of all things I've not yet learned, catching a ride on a single crystal, one of the bazillions that makeup the whole.

Gotta go manipulate something linear.


  1. Welcome back girleen! missed you! And all your amazing thoughts.


  2. Then the names are for the action your hands are committing, right? Rather than for the path of the yarn. And maybe for the (defineable but we usually don't) art part of the process that will (I would guess) make the tension and feel of the product different depending on the tools and positioning of your hands as you do it.

    I always appreciate the thinky-ness of your blog.