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Handmade Knitting My Way Through Chronic Pain

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PUSSYHATS ARE COMING! You can see them here.

Knitting began as a hobby when I was growing up. My maternal grandmother taught me to knit when I was 10. In my mid-twenties, I developed severe chronic migraines, and my health deteriorated to the point where I had to stop my graduate work. Knitting became and is still a great distraction when I feel too sick to do usual stuff – it lets me focus on something besides the pain.

Now it’s an addiction. My husband calls yarn “my crack cocaine”. I still get excited at seeing piles of yarn in pretty colours! (I didn’t know that addiction to colour is something others seem to have in this discussion – I thought it was just me!). heart emoticon Kniting also led me to try hand-spinning yarn on a drop spindle. While I don’t spin often, it was very fun to learn.

I live in Manchester, England with my husband and two cats (Smokey and Spock) who are great cat assistants….even if that means sitting on a project to demand I pet them instead.


My maternal grandmother, Fay Blanchaer, taught me to knit when I was 10 years old. Every time I went to visit her, she would help me knit my very first scarf, bit by bit, while we sat together in her living room. She was a great crafter, and made handmade quilts from scratch for every grandchild in our family, using their favorite colours (mine was pink). She quilted, I knitted. It took me a few years to finish my very first (purple striped) scarf.

Here is one of my recently finished projects, a shawl, and here are some nice things that people have said about my knitting.

 Shorn Lambs store at


I also really love colouring and colouring books – you know, for adults with geometric patterns and so forth. Colouring exercises different muscles than the ones used in knitting. I’ve played piano since I was 5, and violin for a short time. It’s very important to not overstrain any one set of muscles, so I developed knitting and making beaded stitch markers, in addition to piano, so I’d have multiple options to choose from when one muscle set gets too tired or sore.

Please stop by my Etsy store and see some of the scarves and blankets I’ve knitted. If you’d like one, you can get in touch with me  via Facebook.

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About stephanie