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I Knitted a Uterus, And So Can You


I’ve been watching a lot of the Olympics recently, which means that I’ve also been getting a lot of knitting done. I haven’t done much knitting since my first daughter was born over three years ago; it isn’t often that I have time to sit with two hands free, and even when I do, there’s nothing more appealing to little hands than sticks and string, which can lead to quite a mess. Seeing as how my girls aren’t ready to learn to knit yet, it’s been hard to find time to finish a project–which is why I’m still working on my baby’s first blanket. (The baby just turned 2 at the end of June. Ahem.)

Traditionally, when people think of knitting, they think of grandmothers on the prairie darning socks; for some reason Jewish mothers don’t usually come up (which is ironic, really, seeing as how we’re obsessively telling our children to put on a sweater). Yet Jews are knitting more than ever now, and we’re not just making kippahs and tallits. I knit a uterus a few years ago for a friend. Really.

To be honest, I’m not much of a crafter (or a cook, for that matter), but for some reason I can knit. I’m constantly amazed how a piece of yarn can turn into a little strawberry hat, a cable-knit sweater, a warm blanket. Knitting forces me to slow down, to pay attention, to focus on one stitch at a time. I pick patterns that inspire me, that make me happy, that keep me connected to people I care about. I’ve knit scarves for mentors, shawls for family members who were ill, and stuffed toys for friends with new babies.

I understand why knitting can be intimidating to others (I’m terrified of roasting a chicken), but in the end, it’s just sticks and string. If you’re interested in learning to knit, there are a number of great resources available, both in real life and online.

– If you live near a yarn store, start there first. The women who work there will be more than happy to get you started.

– If books are more your style, Teach Yourself Visually: Knitting has clear, easy-to-follow pictures.

– There are easy-to-follow, free online videos at is a social network for knitters (which caused quite a stir when they received a cease-and-desist letter, and later an apology, from the US Olympic committee for hosting their own knitting Olympics). has free, interesting patterns for a variety of skill levels. (I found the uterus pattern here.) If inspiration is what you need, Pinterest is a good place to start, and this Flickr album has some great ideas for Jewish knits. Finally, if you do want to make a kippah, they’re usually crocheted rather than knit, and there’s a great pattern here.

What are your favorite knitting books or websites? I’d love some more ideas.

Happy knitting, and Go Team USA and Team Israel!

The opinions expressed here are the personal views of the author. Comments are moderated, so use your inside voices, keep your hands to yourself, and no, we're not interested in herbal supplements.

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