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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
It appears that the interest in afghans has waned considerably the past few years. Does no one appreciate well made afghans and other hand made things? This is not just limited to afghans. However, now our church group has about 30, both knitted and crocheted. We plan to give them to those who need them.

Our area has undergone cultural and ethnic changes and handmade is not appreciated at all. Have any of you found changes like this? How sad!

Sorry, I just needed to vent about the lack of interest.
 

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Everything seems to go in cycles and I'm guess this just a down period for knitting. This too shall pass. When things like soft fleece throws started getting cheaper and plentiful the need or desire for knitting was shaken. When those items made in turkey and china loose their appeal, knitting will still be there.
 

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This is a trend I've noticed, too. I see new fad items developing that spark a lot of interest away from traditional knitting: Examples: shawls, bears, scarves, novelty yarns, etc. Seasoned knitters want to try something new and I think it's great that knitting has become "modernized" to keep up with new trends.

That said, there's no more rewarding work than knitting a beautiful, intricately detailed pattern in large scale to become the afghan your loved ones curl up in every night on the couch as they watch TV or take a quick nap to relax. I personally spent the first 10 months of this year knitting five aran afghans for gifting the special people in my life this Chritmas. I'm feeling wonderful about packaging these up and hope they'll bring lots of smiles (and cuddles) when the boxes are opened.
 

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BevBaudo said:
It appears that the interest in afghans has waned considerably the past few years. Does no one appreciate well made afghans and other hand made things? This is not just limited to afghans. However, now our church group has about 30, both knitted and crocheted. We plan to give them to those who need them.

Our area has undergone cultural and ethnic changes and handmade is not appreciated at all. Have any of you found changes like this? How sad!

Sorry, I just needed to vent about the lack of interest.
I restarted my interest in crocheting/knitting by doing afghans.

Problem with afghans for me are three fold well four really:

1. TIME and with that

2. BOREDOM with the same pattern.

3. COST of materials coupled with availability of same dye lot.

4. DECOR issues.

Now just for the sake of keeping warm is fine but snuggling up in a twin comforter works for me. So...

:oops:
 

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I don't mean to be critical, but, some of the afghans that I have seen knitted are just not attractive. The colors are not ones that are popular with decor and style. If we want our things to be loved and appreciate they have to be current and up to date...this is one reason peoples knitted items don't sell at craft fairs etc. They are just not pretty! Just because you knitted it doesn't make it beautiful. The pattern has to be beautiful, the item has to be useful and current and the yarn has to be pretty. Look through some magazines and see the current colors, and get rid of the wierd varigated yarn.

Sorry, had to vent.
 

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RebeccaVM said:
I don't mean to be critical, but, some of the afghans that I have seen knitted are just not attractive. The colors are not ones that are popular with decor and style. If we want our things to be loved and appreciate they have to be current and up to date...this is one reason peoples knitted items don't sell at craft fairs etc. They are just not pretty! Just because you knitted it doesn't make it beautiful. The pattern has to be beautiful, the item has to be useful and current and the yarn has to be pretty. Look through some magazines and see the current colors, and get rid of the wierd varigated yarn.

Sorry, had to vent.
I kind of agree - I've seen some afghans that I wouldn't want in my house - but I disagree about needing it to be "current". When I spend a lot of time and money on making an afghan, I want it to be used for years and years. Anything that is in style will inevitably become out of style. I look for timeless styles, like aran, that may pass through times when they aren't "in" but will always look classic.
 

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jumbleburt said:
RebeccaVM said:
I don't mean to be critical, but, some of the afghans that I have seen knitted are just not attractive. The colors are not ones that are popular with decor and style. If we want our things to be loved and appreciate they have to be current and up to date...this is one reason peoples knitted items don't sell at craft fairs etc. They are just not pretty! Just because you knitted it doesn't make it beautiful. The pattern has to be beautiful, the item has to be useful and current and the yarn has to be pretty. Look through some magazines and see the current colors, and get rid of the wierd varigated yarn.

I agree - I too shoot for Timelessness (is that a word).

Sorry, had to vent.
I kind of agree - I've seen some afghans that I wouldn't want in my house - but I disagree about needing it to be "current". When I spend a lot of time and money on making an afghan, I want it to be used for years and years. Anything that is in style will inevitably become out of style. I look for timeless styles, like aran, that may pass through times when they aren't "in" but will always look classic.
 

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Much hand/needlework is beautiful; some isn't.
Often, the perception depends on the beholder.

Skill levels vary, as well.

I believe that afghans are best "made to order" where the recipient can choose the color, pattern and size.
 

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brain56 said:
Much hand/needlework is beautiful; some isn't.
Often, the perception depends on the beholder.

Skill levels vary, as well.

I believe that afghans are best "made to order" where the recipient can choose the color, pattern and size.
I agree about letting the recipient choose the color, pattern, etc. However, I used to sew for people. Some people do not "See" the finished product and can not put patterns, colors, etc. together. I quit sewing because ladies, would pick an inappropriate pattern, unattractive fabric and then expect me to make them look like a super model.

I make afghans and sell them for $100 + cost of materials. This way I know the person really wants the afghan and will love it. It also silences people who want me to make one for free.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
When I see the pictures many of you send of your completed work, I am in awe. I am very new to knitting and when I see the patterns many of you make, I become so enthused about knitting, even though I don't know that much about it - yet. I am looking forward to new projects.
 

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I agree. I make some "spec" afghans using the tunisian crochet method and quilt patterns. They are really cool. When folks see them, they often ask for the same pattern and different colors. I happen to know that every household who received one of my afghans uses them to cozy up while watching TV. But, attractiveness is indeed in the eye of the beholder.
 

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Ladies and Gents:

We must remember: "Beauty is in the eye of the Beholder."

Isn't it great that we humans have such a wide variety of points of view? LOl
 

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RebeccaVM said:
I don't mean to be critical, but, some of the afghans that I have seen knitted are just not attractive. The colors are not ones that are popular with decor and style. If we want our things to be loved and appreciate they have to be current and up to date...this is one reason peoples knitted items don't sell at craft fairs etc. They are just not pretty! Just because you knitted it doesn't make it beautiful. The pattern has to be beautiful, the item has to be useful and current and the yarn has to be pretty. Look through some magazines and see the current colors, and get rid of the wierd varigated yarn.

Sorry, had to vent.
Venting is good for the soul!

The unloved and/or ugly afghans are where much of my knitting yarn comes from. I often buy poorly made afghans from second-hand stores/church bazaars for far less than the cost of the yarn ... even less than the yarn sold in such places! I unravel and re-use. I like to think that the afghans I make are nicer than the ones I unravelled.

Then there are the beautifully made ones - at least as well made as any I've made - that were discarded ... why? Change of décor? Deceased? Gift 'too good to use' and thrown by the inheritor(s)?

Those are the ones I'm not at all shy to hand over to my in-laws (HUGE extended family) for one child/grandchild/cousin/etc. or another. I never actually say I made them; they're free to think so, since I know they'd never accept anything 'second-hand'. Some of my finds I actually keep, because they're just too lovely and unique to rip or give away.:)

I'm still making afghans, but not as swiftly as in my younger years. I couldn't care less if they're pleasing to anyone other than myself. I knit/crochet to please me. If they chance to please someone else, all well and good. I'm not trying to sell them, though I do give them away on a whim.

I have quite a collection and they rotate between storage bags and bed. I guess some of them will end up in a second-hand store eventually.
 

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I'm responsible only for the colors and types of yarn and the pattern and the size and the recipient.

I am not responsible for if they'll want to keep my gift for ever and ever - or if they will care for it properly.

Once I give the gift, it's theirs to do with as they wish.

Lately I've been enjoying the Caron Simply Soft off-white for knitted afghans; and when doing the crochet ripple afghans I've done those in Plush and/or TLC Amore in the colors chosen by the people for whom I'm giving my time and love.

Here are two afghans I've done - white is recent-striped is from 2008. The knit off-white is Caron Simply Soft and a freebie pattern; the crochet ripple is the Plush and a pattern a dear friend taught me.
 

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I knit and crochet for my family and everyone loves whatever I make.

I think the lack of interest in knitting by the general public is similar to the lack of interest in learning to COOK. I'm amazed every time a young woman tells me she doesn't WANT to learn to cook. One in particular has recently had her fifth child and hasn't ever cooked a meal!

My friends - older women - all like to eat out but they also cook for themselves and some told me they love homemade relishes like the zuccini I made last summer...
they just don't want to make it themselves.
 

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I made an afghan for my grandaughter as a surprise and she loves it My daughter then asked me to knit her an afghan. I found several patterns and she picked out the one she wanted and the color of yarn. She was very specific in that it had to have holes in it (lacey). When my 21 year old grandson saw it he asked me to put him on the "afghan list" for one also. I made one for Ryan and he chose the color and, again I picked out several patterns and he chose one. He absolutely loves it. It goes to college with him and even comes home on breaks. I just finished another for my 15 year old grandson and his two brothers are begging me for theirs. They are very warm and the boys like to snuggle under them. They all have store bought fleece but prefer the ones I made. I think letting the recipient help to choose a pattern and making it in the color they want is key. I know if a color will work with a particular pattern and can steer them along. I will post my latest red and black afghan shortly. My grandson wanted red and black, I didn't think I would like the pattern two tone so I made red the main color and edged it in black. He loves it.

It is rewarding to me to have my family ask me to knit something for them and then ask to be put on the waiting list. The 11 year old couldn't wait for his afghan so I made him a scarf which he uses all the time.

I love knitting socks but no one in the family, except my one daughter-in-law wants them. I feel if you are going to put that much effort into your work be sure it will be appreciated BEFORE you give it to someone. Also I found you need to use acrylic or washable wool or cotton especially where it will take a lot of abuse and frequent washing. Who wants to hand wash or not be able to put it in the dryer? These days everything is instant gratification and user friendly. I believe the knitted items I make for someone should also be user friendly. They are not tossed in a closet never to see the light of day again!

I do no want to offend anyone with my comments. They are just my opinion and what works for me.
 

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I am afraid the the appreciation of high quality things is currently on th wain. That goes for clothing as well as knitted products. I am currently knitting caps for 2 friends that need them and the both appreciate the hand made ones over comercal ones. I sent a wool cap to the husdand of a friend who in very sick and he loves it-"the warmest cap he has" Hang in there and keep knitting.
 

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I think a lot of this is caused by the young wanting things immediately and not having the patience to wait, save up or make items - this is certainly so here in the UK :( myself I would much rather have something handmade by someone who cares enough to make it for me or to make it myself (cos I care for me lol) than to go to the shop and buy it ready made - there is more feeling in my handmades they are filled with love x
 
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