Properly practiced, knitting soothes the troubled spirit,
and it doesn’t hurt the untroubled spirit, either.

[Elizabeth Zimmerman]


For many years, I only knit lace. For the price of a ball of bedspread cotton, I could buy hours of fun and produce a window curtain, pillowcase edging, or a table cloth. For under five dollars, I could make a gift that would become a family heirloom. There were other assets to knitting lace. Fitting wasn’t the problem it is with knitting garments. Also, I lived in a warmer climate so I had no need for wooly mittens, breeze-busting hats or ski sweaters.

During my teen years, I knit many leprosy bandages (leprosy is now known as Hanson’s disease). These were similar to Ace bandages. They were knit 3 inches wide and 4 feet long in garter stitch using U.S. size 2 needles and a ball of white bedspread cotton. I met a fellow knitter while I worked in a nursing home. She was blind, and she knit leprosy bandages by feel. I told her I also knit bandages and she replied, “Oh, my dear, knit lace while you can see and save your bandage knitting for the time when, like me, your eyesight fails.” I took her advice and discovered I just had to add a few yarn-overs, and knit-two-togethers in strategic places to my bandage pattern in order to produce a pretty lace insertion. I’ve knit lace ever since.

My knitting friend, Jolene Treace, knit the swatch in the photo above.