Do you read while you knit?

Are you a monogamous knitter, or do you like to have many projects going? I usually have two projects, or three at the most.

More linein minisNext on the needles

I like to have one thinking project, which is usually a design project. I have to work on it at home in peace and quiet, and there’s a lot of ripping and re-knitting as I figure things out. It helps to take good notes!

Red ZephyrJust off the needles, a multi-tasking dream

And I like to have one project that is good for multi-tasking, where I can read, watch TV, or chat at knit nite. Usually the design project becomes a multi-tasking project, after the kinks get worked out and then it’s easy knitting all the way. I like to design things that are good for multi-tasking or meditative knitting, where you don’t have to be tied to the instructions for every stitch or row. This is the kind of knitting I like best.

I read a lot of blogs while knitting, and I like to read on my Kindle. I prefer Kindle to physical books, because it lies flat, and I just have to tap or swipe to turn the page. The last time I read a physical book, I tapped the page and nothing happened!


I’ve been enjoying Mary Anna Evans’ Faye Longchamp mysteries for many years now. I just had the pleasure of reading an advance review copy of Burials, her latest which is coming out on March 7. Faye Longchamp is the scrappy protagonist. Originally from Florida and the descendant of a slave, she’s a smart archaeologist who is something of a murder magnet. She and her hunky husband Joe are always involved in discovering who did it, and how. We learn about archaeological procedure along the way. I was sorry to get to the moment where the murderer was revealed, because I didn’t want the book to end. Fortunately, I’ve just pre-ordered the Kindle edition so I can read it again in my preferred format. Why buy a book I’ve already read? It’s only $6.99, less than 2 cups of fancy coffee, and I’ll catch all the things I missed when I was reading the pdf on my iPad. If you’re looking for a smart, fun read, try this one. The book works as a stand alone story, you don’t have to start at the beginning of the series. But if you want the backstory later, or you want to start at the beginning, Artifacts, the first book in the series, is only 99 cents for the Kindle edition. And on iTunes, it’s free, at least for now. I’d be envious, though, because you’d get to see the character development of my lovely friend Faye. (She seems real to me!)

In the notes at the end of Burials, the author talks about the Spiro Mounds in Oklahoma, the setting for the novel. This Native American historical site dates back to 1400 AD. Some of the finds there include cups, pottery, tools, and textiles. Of particular interest is a bit of lace. Click here to see a picture and learn more about this lace. I had not associated lace with Native American culture, so this was fascinating to me. Can you imagine someone finding a piece of your knitting 600 years from now? What would they make of it? Would they think it was mainstream, or something special for ceremonial purposes?

OK, off to bed. I’m at Madrona, and teaching tomorrow. Blocking first!

Rosaria edge detail

Good night!

13 responses to “Do you read while you knit?

  1. I like to listen to audiobooks while I knit.

    • I can’t listen to audio books if I have to count in my head; somehow the same part of my brain controls both, and then I don’t hear what’s going on in the audio book! I think the visual reading works for me because I can control the flow, looking away when I need to. Whatever works for each of us is great!


  2. Your knitting is just beautiful! Thanks for the kind words about Burials and the Faye series. I just sent a synopsis of the next one to my agent. It’s always exciting to start something new, whether it be a knitting project (well, I crochet) or a book!

  3. Kathryn Gearheard

    Although my mom showed taught me to knit European style ( she called it German pick knitting) when I was 6, I learned to throw in the 4th grade from a woman who never knit a thing without a book in her lap. So from her I also learned to read and knit. I think that is why I can knit in the dark at the movies

    • I can knit and read or “watch” TV, but I can’t listen to audiobooks or podcasts. Somehow that’s wired to the same place in my brain as COUNTING. Oops.


  4. I am not monogamous at all! Usually have four or five on the go, though I’m trying right now to pair it down to two – socks for travel, and a sweater for home.

    • Maybe four is the perfect number of projects. I usually have two, but if the mindless one finishes and I don’t have another one set up, I’m stuck for social knitting!


  5. I am not that talented. I have to concentrate. I can not even watch a video, but I can listen to a book on tape :)))

    • And I can’t listen to a book on tape, because that’s the same space in my brain that does the pattern counting! With books or TV, I can flick my attention back and forth.


  6. I think George Washington’s mother could read and knit at the same time…..but it’s beyond me 😽

  7. I can’t manage to read and knit at the same time. I’ve tried. I either read the words and not know what I’m reading and knit successfully, or have a vivid idea of what I’m reading and wind up knitting everything all wrong.

    • As long as the knitting is fairly simple (garter, stockinette, ribbing), I can manage. But I can’t listen to an audiobook and count at the same time. Weird!


  8. I always read while knitting. Started doing that at age 12.