I watched a programme the other night about creative thinking. It was really interesting and showed a small experiment with a random group of strangers. The group was asked to list how many practical uses a brick could have, however wacky the idea. The group was then split into two groups. One group was sat down and just left to stare into space, the other group was given the repetitive and easy task of building objects out of small bricks. After a few minutes the two groups were brought back and asked again to list uses for the brick. The group left to stare into space didn’t come up with any ground-breaking ideas, but interestingly the other group came up with loads.
It really struck me, whilst watching the programme, that I do have moments of genius thinking whilst I sit there with my repetitive and easy piece of knitting. Tricky patterns aside, the rhythmic and repetitive style of knitting allows my mind to wander and I do have moments where tricky problems are solved that have been perculating in my brain for a few days.
I must clarify at this point, that I haven’t gone so far as to find the cure for cancer – but little problems do have a habit of working themselves out during these points of calm. One such problem the other day was suddenly solved when I was starting my latest WIP – a Wingspan scarf.
With the newly purchased packet of stitch markers, I have cracked-on and started this potentially tricky pattern. The final product should look like this:
To the trained eye you can probably spot the ‘short rows’ on this beast. Frantic YouTube-ing led me to a great clip on how to ‘turn’ the work to create these steps in the pattern. As I was merrily knitting away, complete with my new-found ‘turning’ skills I suddenly had a Eureka! moment. I’d seen this sinister ‘turn’ instruction before! At the time I’d casually closed the book, kicked it away, and pretended I hadn’t seen it. This accompanied by the strange instruction to ‘S1K’ and S1P’ had caused me to block out the potential horror.
Upon this brainwave I was filled with glee – I’d seen the ‘turn’ instruction before in the pattern for the longest ever work-in progress that is the dreaded ELEPHANT! I had previously had a vision of the worlds first headless elephant toy for a child. Not great.
Fear not though readers – together with my newly acquired skill I have now completed the head of the elephant without too much difficulty and this beast is one step closer to completion. Just the ears and the tusks to go…