OK, so we nearly all have this cultural image of knitting being an activity of grandmothers. Even if you personally know members of the younger knitting generation (which I'd say most of you do, LOL), the gramma thing still persists a bit.
My grandmothers do not knit. But I have non-knitting friends who's grandmothers were knitters, and oh how I have benefited! So today I'm giving a public shout out/thank you.
When I was in grad school my friend Taline gave me her grandmother's knitting needles. There were about 10 pairs in different sizes, all rolled up in a pretty red felt case and tied with a white bow. She was never going to use them, she explained, and she'd like them to go to someone who would. I was delighted, and use those needles (and the case, which I really dig) still.
Recently my friend Abby asked me if I'd like her grandmother's knitting things- some yarn and needles. As if I were capable of turning down knitting stuff! So Abby very kindly mailed me several boxes of yarn and one box of knitting hardware. You know, needles in all kinds of sizes, stitch markers, stitch holders, tapestry needles, cable needles...anything you might need to complete a knitted item other than yarn. I thought I'd be more excited by the yarn, but time has proven me wrong. I keep that box tucked under my bed, right next to where I do most of my knitting. Does my pattern suddenly require makers? Out comes the box! Am I going to do a little cabling? Out comes the box! Need to check my gauge? Box! The box is a delightful jumble of plastic and metal and and has never yet failed to produce what I need (or at least something close enough to work). I call the box "Abby's grandma". It wasn't intentional...but one day when I needed something I knew I'd never purchased myself I told Robert, smugly, "That's OK, I bet Abby's grandma has it". And she did.
So Abby, I hope you're not offended or appalled that your grandmother's knitting tools have come to personify her in my mind! I'm ever so grateful to have them tucked away under my bed.
And if any of the rest of you have stash from your own knitting grandma, you know who to call... (NO! Not them! ME!)