Knitting at Wimbledon

Did you see the woman knitting during the coverage of Andy Murray’s match? I did and heard the commentator mention it. At the time I wondered what she was knitting in that bright pink yarn.  I was actually impressed at the good use of her time multi-tasking.

Then surprisingly on Radio 2 yesterday lunchtime there was a whole discussion on the resulting Twitter exchange of pro/anti views on knitting while watching a Centre Court match: A waste of a ticket? An insult to the players; what if one of them had looked up and seen her knitting? Is there a safety issue to the players? Is the noise distracting to others? Can knitters concentrate fully while they knit?

Jeremy Vine interviewed a woman while she knitted a scarf; to see if she could maintain eye contact, concentration and hold a conversation. Unsurprisingly she could do all three. He also talked to a student who knit in lectures as the Christmas holiday loomed and her presents were still being created, and a woman who teaches knitting and takes hers on the train. The only negative comments were read out and seemed largely to be from men!

If you can access the BBC iplayer the discussion was on Radio 2, Jeremy Vine 02/07/12 around 141 minutes into the programme. This link will only last for about a week.

Newspapers have asked ‘Are you the woman who was knitting at Wimbledon? Do you know this woman?’ Here’s one article from The Telegraph.

And here are a few pro-knitting at Wimbledon tweets, predictably from a couple of Knitting magazines:

Knitting Magazine@KnittingMag

Woman in ‘knitting whilst watching tennis’ shocker. It’s called multi-tasking….

Let’s Knit magazine@Letsknitmag

We love this woman who #knitted at Wimbledon!

Knitting Magazine@KnittingMag

Katie here! After the Wimbledon debacle I think we should all go for some public knitting to increase awareness…


So, what do you think about public knitting, particularly at a sporting event like Wimbledon?

9 thoughts on “Knitting at Wimbledon

  1. What an awesome post! I think that women should knit whenever and wherever they want to, but they should also consider if knitting is courteous to others. If someone was performing (whether in tennis or music or whatever) and I thought they wouldn’t appreciate my multitasking, I might just save it for later. But I’ve asked my teachers if I can knit in class and they said yes, so I do that all the time.

  2. I guess it’s up to the individual. I’m a bit surprised why someone would want to take along their knitting – I certainly wouldn’t take a long my sewing because there is a time and a place and I’m not sure as a spectator at an event is one of them. If I had a ticket to Wimbledon I’d rather enjoy the atmosphere than create like that.

  3. I didn’t see it but I did hear the discussion on Jeremy Vine. I think it’s fine to do in public places and with other people, provided they don’t mind. I got mine out in the hospital waiting room last Monday and whilst the boys were doing Karate at their dojo yesterday. At the dojo when it was time to leave I noticed another lady had got out her hook and was crocheting wire. I think it is just about passable at Wimbledon. At a lot of other sporting and performing events it would not be suitable or could appear very rude depending on the circumstances? Could be fine at cricket, but not at football or rugby. I do agree with the person on Jeremy Vine that pointed out that knitting and also crochet (despite enjoying a period of trendiness at the moment) are done by far fewer people than they used to be so by doing them all over the place it is positive promotion of what could one day be a dying skill.

  4. This is wonderful… I always knit while watching my kids play basketball, soccer, while watching tv, while my husband drives and in training conferences at work… I always thought I was a bit crazy but how fun is life without a bit of craziness?
    I love all the press and comments about somebody knitting in public … I hope they are emphasizing how good knitting is for her health ! :) Great post.

  5. I always take my crochet with me wherever I go, including my writing group meetings, but despite that I think if I had tickets for Wimbledon, I would leave the crochet at home and try and get into the spirit of the game, and give it my full attention. On the other hand, maybe she had an order that she was desperately trying to finish?… :-) How funny that some people see it as an insult – if she was texting on her cell phone, no-one would have given it another thought.

  6. More people should knit in public. I would imagine most of us multi-task whenever we knit. Whenever I knit in public people always stop and talk knitting with me or even get their own out.

  7. Men are just jealous they can’t multi task! Whenever I pull out my knitting Hubby laments ‘you are going to ignore me’, he thinks just because he has to stop and concentrate on talking to me when he is working in his shed that I must be the same :)

  8. I know this is a very old post but I am just on my way home from Wimbledon where I quietly got on with my knitting whilst watching the Kyle Edmund and Novak Djokovic matches and wondered if anyone else did the same. I chose my project carefully as it had to be something I could do without looking or counting. I always have a “mindless” project but my current one (the Boxy by Joji Locatelli) is now too big for travelling and I am fed up to the back teeth with socks! I finally opted for a simple Mobius shawl. I thoroughly enjoyed the tennis, the knitting, the wine and the strawberries. Am now on the train and just about to cast off, so it was clearly just the right sized project and I can return home to the Shetland Wool Week Roadside Beanie and prepping for Tour de Fleece!

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