As promised today I am going to be telling you a little bit about how I do my meditation knitting in a little step by step guide. (As with last week’s post this also applies to crochet)
For me space is very important. I can’t get calm if I am not in a tidy space, so I either move to a tidy space or I spend a little time sorting out my space to make it calming for me. You can also do this outside although I have particularly loud children in my neighbourhood so it is not very conducive to meditation for me to be outside.
Also make sure that wherever you are going to be seated is comfortable.
If you feel like you don’t want absolute silence then try and find some music or sound playlists that will help you. I really like this Youtube channel by Jonnie Lawson. There are also meditation playlists on services such as Amazon Music. My preference is either light chimes, bird song, or running water. But there are also many other soothing calming sounds out there that you can incorporate into your practice.
I am particularly affected by smells and I like to burn incense but you can also burn a scented candle, spray a room spray, get a bunch of flowers. Anything that would enhance your experience. These smells also give you something to focus on and explore if you find your mind running away with you.
I like to sit by a Sunny window or light a candle in winter. If open flames make you anxious you could use a battery-powered (fake) candle instead. I have a few from when we used to rent a flat and were not allowed to have real candles.
All of these things help to create an intentional space for you to practise being mindful or meditative. Our brains are things of habit and ritual and the more you utilise these things the quicker your brain will fall into your calm space as you set these things up. My brain remembers all the things that I do for my calm space and so as I set them up my brain takes it as a cue to start getting to that meditative space. Repetition is key.
The final thing I want to talk about today is the Project which you choose.
It is important that this project is chosen in relation to your skills. For example, I am an avid sock knitter, I have knit over 53 pairs of socks, and i have been knitting socks for 5 years. This means that I can knit socks as part of my meditation knitting because they really don’t take any thought for me. But I would never suggest socks as a meditation project for a beginner. As an advanced knitter it is up to you to choose your project but I will give some suggestions for beginners – Garter stitch (plain knit every row) is the best for a very new beginner but stockinette (plain on one side and purl on the other) is suitable for a beginner with a bit of experience. Scarves, washcloths, and shawls are all good projects for beginners.
Considerations for choosing a project:
- Select something simple. You don’t want to be constantly referring back to a pattern as this will interrupt your calm. This practice is much more about the act of knitting rather than the finished product.
- While you may want to focus on what your hands are doing and on the movement of the stitches, you want this to be in a calm introspective way, not in a stressed way. So choosing an overly complicated stitch will not help you.
- Repetition is good, so either a plain garter stitch or stockinette is good. Or a simple pattern like 2×2 rib or seed stitch will work nicely if you are comfortable with using knit and purl stitches in the same row.
- Slow and steady not speedy! This is about being calm, it is not a race, don’t try and zoom through the knitting. Just work at a steady pace that is comfortable for you. I am usually a fast knitter and I like to slow right down for my practice.
- Choose a suitable wool/yarn. I try to avoid anything that is too fuzzy or loosely spun, I don’t want to spend my time worrying about splitting stitches or catching fuzz. It’s about the moment not the project.
I hope that you enjoyed today’s post and that you feel suitably set up for starting your practice. In the next post I will share with you few steps on what to do with your mind during your practice if you want some tips.
Peace and Love