Recite Me

One stitch at a time

One stitch at a time

Nifty knitter Dorothy Richardson brings joy to her village all year round, by decorating her garden with cute and quirky crafts. She tells us how it all began...

I started knitting out of necessity when I was 18 and was left to care for my sister and two brothers.

We had very little money, so I started knitting clothes for my sister for school. Back then it was a means to an end but later I started to enjoy it more as a craft.

I learned to crochet and joined the local knit and natter club.

Though it’s always been part of my life, knitting became especially important to me a few years ago. I moved from our family home into my Karbon bungalow on the same estate when my husband died. It was hard to get used to being alone in a new place. I missed him so much. My knitting brought me comfort.

Then one Christmas I decided to cheer up the garden by hanging some knitted decorations around the fence.

The children in the street loved them and that encouraged me to do more. It all just grew from there. Now the garden is never without a knitted display. Local residents come to visit and people enjoying lovely walks in the area get a nice surprise when they pass.

I change the theme to celebrate all of the seasons and main points in the calendar. We have bunnies and eggs for Easter and we had fruit and vegetables and an afternoon tea party for summer. There were witches, webs and spiders for Halloween, poppies for Remembrance Sunday and now there are baubles and Christmas puddings galore for winter.

Last Christmas I knitted 200 angels and left them in a box outside for people to make a wish. This year I’ll be making stars with a little bell attached. I don’t want any money for them – they’re simply a gift. It’s lovely to see people’s reactions and to make them smile.

I’m not on Facebook but I’m told people put photos on and lots of people comment to say how much they enjoy what I do and that feels good. I love to see the reactions of the kids and the wonder in their eyes. One child was trying to pick the peas out of a knitted peapod the other day and couldn’t believe it wasn’t real!

I was even asked to knit a hat for the village post box. A little boy from the village helped me to measure the top of the box so I could get it to fit right. It’s made in autumn colours and covered in hedgehogs. I didn’t tell anyone else I was doing it and I sneaked down in the night and popped it on, so it was there as a bank holiday surprise for everyone. People were guessing who did it!

We first heard of Dorothy’s lovely knitting, through Karbon colleague Lucy, who enjoys her weekly calls with Dorothy, as part of the Silver Talk befriending service. If you’d like a weekly 30-minute natter as a user of the service, like Dorothy or to register as a volunteer like Lucy, let us know. To find out more about our free 30-minute call service, or to volunteer as a caller email or call 0808 164 0111.

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29 November 2021

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