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Study shows some knit as more than a hobby

Study shows some knit as more than a hobby (NTV News)
Study shows some knit as more than a hobby (NTV News)
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Many of us picked up a new activity or hobby during the pandemic and if you started knitting you aren't alone.

Knitting and crochet have seen a big comeback in popularity over the last several years and a professor at the university of Nebraska has been looking into this new trend and found that, for some, there is much more to the hobby than just knitting.

Nobody is really quite sure when the trend started but yarn shops across the country have noticed a big uptick in business in the last few years.

"Our business has been up 35%. Because they had time on their hands and they came to us and they wanted to pick up a project and make that happen," said Angie Barret, Owner of Knit-Paper-Scissors in Lincoln.

Often thought of as an activity for old ladies knitting is suddenly a cool thing to do once more and Andre Maciel, a UNL professor who studies consumer behavior, says that many of those picking up the needles are looking to bring some respect to the often disparaged concept of "women's work".

"Women were reclaiming the activity or the identity of knitting, knowing that there were stereotypes associated with that and wanting to fight against that. They wanted to confront those stereotypes to try and change them," said Maciel

Maciel's research shows that for some knitting was a quiet to make a statement, with women using their knitting skills in everything from charitable donations to political statements.

"During the women's march we sold out of our pink yarn, there was definitely a demand for it," said Barret.

"The ability to make the hats gave us, I think it gave us power. And it helped us feel a part of it," said Stacy Stupka, one of a group of knitters who gather at Knit-Paper-Scissors.

Maciel found many of these women weren't looking to shirk traditional gender roles but instead demand respect for activities that have long been de-valued for being too feminine.

"They were not abandoning those roles to become radical activists. Instead they were infusing this cultural politics or identity politics into their everyday lives," said Maciel.

Maciel says though not everyone is getting into knitting to make a statement, some are just looking for community, or some stress relief.

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"I don't necessarily find it not stressful to knit, because I have to rip this out again...," said Stupka

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