Monday, November 9, 2009

Feeling Crafty

Since this is a beer blog, I don’t mention much about other hobbies. Today, though, I am going to talk about another hobby of mine: knitting! (Don’t worry, I’ll relate it to beer. I promise.) Though I haven’t yet developed the courage to knit us up a hydrometer holder or decorative tap handle covers, I have tried to come up with a clever way to mix beer & knitting together (other than the obvious; that’s been done, with sometimes disastrous results). They seem like strange bedfellows; I have seen a blog that combines knitting and beer, and the author even hosts beer/knitting classes. But I knew the combination of the two had hit the mainstream when I saw them in print. Last month, I received a KnitPicks catalog in the mail and spotted not only one ad featuring beer, but TWO!

The first was for a book featuring patterns and suggestions for knitting projects you can do with friends at a pub. ("Purl" is a type of stitch in knitting.)

They’re even ranked by complexity to help you know how much concentration is required. Cute, but I can figure that out on my own.

A few pages later, I happened upon this:

Not only are those two hands sporting what would be some great winter homebrewing gloves, and not only are they holding bottles of beer, they’re holding HUB bottles! (Don't ask me what that little green guy is off to the left. Kind of creepy.) Winner of 2 GABF gold medals only 1.5 years into its existence, Hopworks Urban Brewery (HUB) hails from my home town and makes some mighty fine brew. It was fun to see it in a rather unrelated setting.

The intersection of craft beer and knitting really isn't that far-fetched, though, especially if that craft beer is home-brewed. There is a lot of satisfaction in creating something from scratch, understanding how it is made, and sharing the final product with others. Whether knitting, woodworking, gardening, or brewing beer, hobbies get us involved in the creation of something personal. And sometimes, multiple hobbies can be combined. Farming hops and brewing beer, for instance. Building your own brew sculpture. Making a keggle.

Or, knitting your own carboy cozy.

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