Knitting for Good!: A Guide to Creating Personal, Social, and Political Change Stitch by Stitch
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Knitting for Good!: A Guide to Creating Personal, Social, and Political Change Stitch by Stitch

3.52 of 5 stars 3.52  ·  rating details  ·  120 ratings  ·  30 reviews
Every time we knit, we have the opportunity to create positive change in ourselves, our community, and in the world. That’s Betsy Greer’s fervent belief, and in this book she shows us how. Betsy explores the ways we can use knitting to slow down in a fast-paced culture, while using the craft to benefit charities in our communities, to advocate for worthwhile causes, and to...more
Paperback, 228 pages
Published November 11th 2008 by Roost Books
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When I initially borrowed this book from the library, I was under the impression that it was all about knitting charities and how to get involved via knitting. However, I was pleasantly surprised that this was more of a narrative of one woman's journey in life that knitting helped guide.

It does highlight many things I've read about knitting i.e. the meditative state, therapeutic, and a feeling of self-reliance. It was nice reading combined in one personalized narrative. She also highlights knit...more
Feb 02, 2009 Christine rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommended to Christine by: Forrest
Shelves: non-fiction
A friend gave me this book over the holidays and it helped me see my crafting impulse in a couple of new ways, which was great. One new perspective is that of crafting as a way to subvert consumerism. If I make my own bag or socks or sweater instead of buying, the result is a totally unique item that I get to take complete ownership of. This helped me understand why so many of the items in the stores are just not quite what I'm looking for.

Betsy Greer also talks about the meditative side of kni...more
I received this ARC through LibraryThing's Early Reviewer program. The subtitle says it all, really.
The book begins with an introduction to knitting (and by inference, other needle and fibre crafts) and it's re-emergence as a popular craft. The concept of knitting (etc.) as a link to one's ancestors is an important concept here.
Personally, I believe that knitting as an activity is inherently good: one is making warm garments or even toys to provide love and warmth to oneself or someone else. A...more
Laura Elliott Monroe
Pros:A fun read, LOTS of inspiration, and some good patterns.
Cons:Why isn't there more of it? ;)
The Bottom Line: Pick it up as a springboard for charitable knitting inspiration!

I have a knitting charity that provides wearable/usable goods for the homeless in my city, and I'm always looking for more ways to contribute to my community via knitting. I was thrilled when my best friend mailed me this book.

Publisher's review: Every time we knit, we have the opportunity to create positive change in our...more
Elise Cohen
"This is a lovely little book for any knitter's library. It jumps around a bit but provides a very pleasant read and a good deal of support and community building.[return]Greer writes of her thoughts on knitting as a personal journey as well as an opportunity for both creativity and activism. Knitters can influence their own personal growth through knitting and particularly though not exclusively through knitting for others. She also profiles a number of other knitters (including bloggers, write...more
Kelly Maybedog
I like the concept, and I agree with pretty much everything the author says, I'm just not sure it needed a whole book. Or maybe just that the execution wasn't the greatest. Plus, this was really about Crafting for good not Knitting: most of the examples varied greatly in the different types of craft they were talking about. I think they were latching onto the knitting fad with the title.

The basic premise of the book is that you can engender social change in just about everything you do. Just buy...more
As suspected, this book is primarily a discourse on the good that can come from handmade items, the author's philosophy and experience. Part 1 - the personal effects of knitting and benefits from that act. Part 2 - ways to help your community with your "craft and creativity." Part 3 - "how our individual actions can affect the lives of others thousands of miles away." A few patterns are included - hat, scarf, baby blanket, vest, etc. The bibliographic material is somewhat sparse.

First, I think t...more
This line spoke the most to me, though I wish that it didn't need to be written:
"Textiles gave these women a voice; when they weren't allowed to speak, they could communicate their emotions through color, expressing their hopes and fears and anger stitch by stitch." (p 118 note: this refers to a Advanced Reader's Copy so you page number may vary).

Greer has done a very nice job in intermingling her experiences, the experiences and personal words of others, and how we ourselves can embrace crafti...more
"Knitting for Good!" is a great idea. I've loved the idea of "craftivism" since I first heard it, through Betsy Greer, as a matter of fact. Maybe it's because this isn't a new concept for me, but I found this book to be sort of dry, even though there were personal stories sprinkled throughout the text. It just didn't work for me. Maybe I am not enough of a hardcore knitter.

There are also a few patterns in "Knitting for Good!" but nothing groundbreaking, and nothing I felt like adding to my queue...more
Adult nonfiction; knitting/social activism. If you are a knitting fanatic and will eagerly devour anything related to knitting, this is for you. Otherwise, you can skip this book, as it doesn't actually contain much information that you don't already know/can't figure out for yourself. There are a few ideas for making a positive impact with your knitting (knit scarves and hats for the homeless; blankets for animals at the shelter; knit tree and car-antenna cozies to brighten up certain corners o...more
This book feels important, one I'd like to own, and not for the patterns. It really captures the way I feel about both the act of knitting and the reclaiming of crafting - making our own clothes and other objects in our own ways - as related to feminism, activism, consumerism and personal growth. I grew up in a household of women who never gave up on creating clothing and handwork with pride, but that pride in craft went into the background some with my generation. I like getting it back, and se...more
Feb 16, 2009 Nicole rated it 3 of 5 stars
Shelves: own
This seems good for its intentions. It has suggestions on ways to knit for charity, and does a good job of showing many, many ways that crafting can benefit more than the crafter. (And also ways that it *does* benefit the crafter.) However, the yarns suggested for use in items to be donated seem a bit on the pricey side, and since this was a review copy there were lots of typos. I hope the typos will be corrected in the published version, but it did hinder my reading a bit.
What?! I’m allowed to read non-fiction occasionally! Yes, even two in a month’s time. Really. I have it in writing. (Get it?) Besides, this is technically a new year, so my having read the Yarn Harlot’s latest a couple of weeks ago totally doesn’t count. Anyway, it was good to read a book about using knitting to make our world better, up close and afar. I already agree with the principle, so it was self-affirming to see my own beliefs in print and in circulation.
This is an 'activist knitters' inspirational companion! I found that just reading this book made me want to pick up my knitting.

The projects sprinkled throughout the pages looked easy and fun. The book provides many ideas for how knitting can benefit others. In other words, if you already have one too many scarves and your family is sick of receiving hats for gifts, there are plenty of ways to channel that creative energy for the greater good.
Sian Lile-Pastore
i found this such an inspiration - and i don't even knit!
It's actually a book that applies to all kinds of crafts (although has a few knitting patterns in it) and looks at how craft can be helpful in your life and in other people's lives too. It links craft with Riot Grrrl and feminism and talks about community, knitting for good causes and craftivism.
Aug 18, 2013 Courtney marked it as knitting-books
I am only 20 pages in but baffled by the continuous references to feminism, Riot Grrl, and related topics. I thought I was reading a book about service and charitable giving... I never thought those things were gender specific. The author's excessive focus on gender changes the entire tone of the book. I hope it improves.
Stitchers of all varieties will see themselves in this book - what drew them to craft, what keeps them there - but Greer will also inspire you to do more with your crafting, offering everything from interviews to patterns to inspiration on how to affect your community and the world with craft.
This is a fun combination of knitting for self, knitting for the greater good of humanity with patterns sprinkled in. I'm just starting to get back into knitting after a 40 year absence and I missed having basic instructions, but aside from that it was a good inspiratiobn.
I loved this book. The author so perfectly captured so much of my own feelings about knitting and activism. I've always been an activist but am a relatively new (albeit totally obsessed) knitter and this book so wonderfully examined the intersection of the two.
I lost interest in the text. There are personal story sidebars that I mostly skipped, partly because the white text on blue background was difficult for me to read. It includes 9 patterns, pretty simple projects, with only little sketches, no photos.
A cute and inspiring read looking at knitting from various angles - the personal, social, and political - and how it can inspire and promote change or shift paradigms. A little bit self-self, a little bit rebel-rousing, entirely refreshing.
Hannah Kane
Had to read this book for class. I'm not a knitting person, or even remotely crafty, so that could be why this book came across as a little self-satisfied to me. I bet knitters and other crafty folk would enjoy this book more than I did.
Apr 06, 2011 Dayini rated it 4 of 5 stars
Shelves: cpl
A great little book about the philosophy and the why of knitting. I loved the content of the book more than the knitting patterns. Definitely a book I will be adding to my library!
BO-RING. I mean, you would think this book would be right up my ally, but MAN if social change were this droll, no one would do it, knitting needles or not!
I love the concept, and it's a great introduction to how something we can do anywhere anytime, can be used as a tool to bring about change.
Dec 15, 2008 JayeL marked it as to-read
Heard about this book on the To the Best of Our Knowledge show called Reconsidering Craft, 12/14/2008:
Sela would love this book...some interesting ways to look at knitting - hope to try a few of the patterns.
Bond Drager
The story about the prisoners and the metaphorical implications of their craft is particularly moving.
Subject is more about "craftivism" and is a bit repetitive. Not a bad read though.
Jan 19, 2009 Lee is currently reading it
loving it!
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I'm a craft nerd who wrote Knitting for Good in 2008 and will be coming out with a craftivism anthology, Craftivism The Art of Craft and Activism in the spring of 2014. I've also written essays for books like Extra Ordinary Craft and Contemporary Art and Handmade Nation. I like Lionel Richie's smooth jams, teatime, and the seaside.
More about Betsy Greer...
Craftivism: The Art of Craft and Activism Knitting for Good!: A Guide to Creating Personal, Social, and Political Change, Stitch by Stitch

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“True magic happens when we create with our hands and dream from our hearts.” 2 likes
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