Where does a Granny stand? And how much does she make?

This spring our campaign got some exceptional attention in the media and the feedback made me think, what kind of role is suitable for a woman over 60 years in our society. The support and feedback we got were both extremely positive. Who wouldn’t love the Grannies and want them to be able to knit also in the future? Well, someone doesn’t as the more publicity Myssy gets the more comments come around where the role of the Grannies is questioned and dismissed. When someone talks about ripping off grannies, one also ends up making senile fools out of them. Do people really think that retired women are too old to decide about their own matters, to senile to understand their own best? 

Our Grannies are both insulted and entertained by this conversation in social media. They are full members of this society of ours: free and fully able to decide upon their use of time, money, knitting and  presence in social media. Grannies are knitting for us, because they, surprise suprise, like what they do. They enjoy knitting, new friends, coffee breaks and knitting circles, trips to Helsinki and the new possibilities that the extra income gives them. The negative conversation about Grannies being ripped off tells most of all about the attitudes towards older women and what is appropriate for them. Should they just sit in the living room, preferably alone and quiet, perhaps knitting socks? An active woman that takes an active role and makes a new career after retirement, poses with a leather jacket, takes over social media and has several hobbies including traveling is just too much for some people. It is easier to underestimate the Grannies than accept their role: They must not understand, they are so old!

The common worry about how much money Grannies make with knitting seems to be genuine or is it? Just like the worry about knowing how much money the neighbor makes, right? Years ago we made the decision not to publish specific information about salaries and we made it together with the Grannies to protect them. If the compensation isn’t fair, we bet no one would knit for us. Every Granny gets the same compensation for the same product by piece and that really seems to irritate someone out there. Also the quality keeps worrying some active knitters: A Granny might have made a thousand beanies, but that was one awful beanie. I would knit better myself! The sad thing is that most people giving these comments would be potential Grannies themselves. There is an unwritten rule in the Finnish knitting community that you can’t make money by knitting and this tabu is now broken. Grannies do make money. Some serious knitting money by knitting and enjoying life...

I felt it was about time to stand up for our Grannies and give a response for these faceless online conversations that keep putting down our Grannies. Our Grannies have read and commented on this text before it has been published, they stand behind it. Our Grannies are superwomen that have taken on a new challenge called Myssy. Being a Myssy Granny has given some of the content and new role in life that is empowering to them. Some of these ladies have felt they have been seen, accepted and appreciated for the first time in years. The adventures of our Grannies shall continue and you just need to deal with it.

On behalf of Myssy and the Grannies,

P.S. This Saturday starts again Fashion Revolution Week that promotes more transparent and ethical fashion. We will be part of it as every year, but we also put out makers at front every single day in a year.

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