After looking up the meaning and source of my title I am not sure I should use it! Shakespeare is the source (I should have known) almost everything seems to source back to his work! And the meaning is a little on the arrogant side – the riches of the world are at my feet and I can pick and choose what I want from them!
But as a knitter and/or designer today, the riches of the world are truly at our feet.
Through books and the internet we can view and then examine even more closely what other knitter, designers, and crafts people are creating. From these sources we can pick and choose elements and then create our own versions of what we see. Many knitting designers have created whole bodies of work based on ethnic history and fibre design elements that are not their own. Nancy Bush – has opened our eyes to Estonian Knitting Styles, Priscilla Gibson-Roberts – she brought Eastern Socks to our sock repertoire, and Marianne Isager – has explored African and Japanese design elements in her books, are but a few of the designer names and cultures that they have explored, that spring to mind.
Yesterday I bought a new Sock Book – Knitting Socks From Around the World, Kari Cornell, editor. It joins my other sock books, including Silk Road Socks, Ethnic Socks and Stockings and Around the World in Knitted Socks. You can see the theme developing here and these are only the Sock books.
If I look through my knitting library I can see Japanese knitting books, Scandinavian knitting books, Estonian knitting books, Andean knitting books etc, etc, etc. If I look beyond my library to the Internet, I can, at the touch of a button, explore other cultures at my leisure.
We have at our reach, thanks to the Internet, the contents of most of the worlds museums. We can visit the collections of the Victoria and Albert Museum in London, the Smithsonian in Washington and the Louvre in Paris, just by typing a few words into our search engines and flying through the ether to see all the world has to offer!
For knitters in particular, we have sites like Ravelry, and knitting blogs that allow us to connect with other knitters all over the World! I have chatted on-line with knitters and fibre crafters from the United States, Great Britain, Australia, Germany and Chile. Opportunities, like the Tea-Cozy Competition in Australia and the Vogue Magic of Mohair Design Competition were both brought to my attention by my internet friends!
I know that I want to travel and visit many of the museums and the countries that they are in, but now is not quite the time. There is no substitution for the real experience of travel, but it has to be when the time is right. Until then, visiting the museums, or chatting with friends on-line and reading my books will have to do!
Happy Knitting, Reading, Chatting, etc – the world is waiting at our leisure!