Friday, April 10, 2009

Two Steps Forward...

Need I really finish that title? Here are some "one step back" moments from the last week:

1. Lack of Skill
My sister "Delicia" wrote to me on Facebook that the necklace I gave her fell apart as she was putting it on; she thought it gave out at the clasp. I'm gratified that she was wearing it even when I wasn't around to see, but very disappointed in my work. Only days before I had contacted a local bead shop owner about lessons on attaching clasps, which I think is a real weak spot in my current skills. Obviously, I really do need it and now have something to bring to class to work on.

2. Bad Judgment
When casting off the second pedicure sock, I ran out of yarn. I had a whole ball of yarn to work with and I didn't cut a long enough end to sew it off with. So this didn't need to happen, ever. I just didn't estimate enough and had to have two extra ends in the sock. I wouldn't have been so worried about it if they were wool (wool ends are so much easier to deal with) but they are made of cotton so these ends may rear their ugly heads in the future. (I won't answer the question begged in the last sentence: can an end have a head?)

But after berating myself sufficiently, I put the self-condemnation aside, cut a new (long) piece of yarn and finished the sewn bind off, working in the extra ends. These kind of problems loom so large when you discover them, but are so much smaller after you've solved them.

3. Blending Colours
With the knitting on my Mariah finished, I finally finally finally allowed myself to start a swatch for my Deep V Argyle Vest with these fabulous colourways
that I famously said would "play well together." They played so well together that they were indistinguishable. :sigh: I started the swatch from the center of the balls and happened to get the grey against green. Both colours are pretty, but do not work at all in a pattern that needs some contrast. Thank goodness the one ball didn't start with orange because then I would have had no idea of the disaster awaiting me some long time later in the vest. Phew!!

There was a simple solution for this that my hubby put very succinctly after I had laid out the problem to him. He said, "You know what this means...you need to buy more wool." So happy he understands how this all works.

So I slipped to Red Purl on Friday night and picked out this equally fabulous red to be used with the grey.
I'm disappointed not to use the green/purple/orange colourway because I love it so much but I am confident another project will come along that will be perfect for it. Just not this vest right now.

In summary, no setbacks that I couldn't recover from, but some of it was not very encouraging! It is empowering, however, to be able to fix your own problems and to know that you can better your skills with lessons or practice.

It reinforces my view that knitting is for the brave. Only the brave can start a project that will take hours of work without a guarantee that it will turn out how you want or expect. Only the brave can recognize a mistake and rip out hours of work to fix it. Only the brave can eschew instant gratification and take the time to work at something they can call all their own.

I encourage you to be brave in whatever projects you take on in life.

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