Mother, forgive me. It’s been ten weeks since my last blog.
Since we’re in a new year, 2019, it seems like a good time to talk about mistakes. I have made several, sometimes only by breathing, but especially by speaking my mind. My knitting ALWAYS has mistakes, sometimes visible, sometimes hidden in the pattern. It’s really kind of fun hearing about other people’s mistakes, but not so much when contemplating my own.
I have mentioned the Guild I belong to, Mesa Fiber Arts Guild, because it is a huge part of the artist I am and hope to become. There is constant inspiration, learning, and amazing company. People who knit are generally very intelligent – they have to be, there’s a lot of counting involved.
Which brings me to mistake number one – losing count. Yesterday, I was working on a lace patterned scarf (a gift for my daughter who won’t read this blog) and realized that the scarf was diminishing in width. Losing count is a very “beginning knitter” kind of mistake to make.
Beginning knitters are notorious for adding and dropping stitches all the time. I’ve knitted for a long time, but am still making “beginner” mistakes!!!!! It really gets my knickers in a twist when I do something like that.
Fortunately, I wasn’t that happy with the scarf (too wide), anyway. Maybe it was my subconscious telling me I wouldn’t be satisfied with the scarf, because it needed to be narrower. A Freudian slip, if you will. So, I fearlessly frogged it, and started again, with fewer stitches. (Frog = “rip it, rip it”) It was still too wide, so I frogged it again, finally settling on a width I found acceptable. I like a long scarf, regardless of width, and this is going to work much better, trust me.
As mentioned before, I regularly make mistakes in my knitting, but often just turn a blind eye and ignore them. In the Hallonberry Bonnet (Ravelry, Asta Nordvig), made for the pastor’s twin girls, the first one I made was too small, so couldn’t really ignore that one. It will be saved for a friend in Oregon who is to have a little girl. The second one I made was perfect, then I thought, “I’ll make a different style for the other twin!” So I made another hat in the style of a “pussyhat,” but it, too, is too small. Had to buy more yarn. (Bought too much more yarn, so now I have an even bigger stash.) But, I did make a second Hallonberry Bonnet in the correct size, so the twins will have hats alike, even though they are not, themselves, identical. Indeed, the hats are not identical, since I made a mistake in the second one that I didn’t make in the first one, and did my best ignoring of that error. I’ll bet you can’t tell from the picture which one has the mistake! (Is your head spinning?)
Other mistakes I’ve made are twisting a cable the wrong way, flubbing a lace pattern, not knitting the correct gauge for something that’s supposed to fit an actual human being. When the item is for me, I usually don’t care, but when it’s for someone else, I sometimes have the grace to feel embarrassed. But sometimes, you just fuzz up the yarn a little and keep on keepin’ on. Keep Calm and Knit on, if you will.
When knitting lace, a helpful tool is the “lifeline,” in which you insert a thread or yarn in a row of knitting, to which you can fearlessly frog without completely bollixing the whole project. It’s really helpful to insert the lifeline while you’re knitting the row, however. Otherwise, you have to try to thread it through something you’ve already knitted, which, in a lace pattern, can be — no, make that IS — a trip to Crazytown.
I mentioned earlier the inspiration I take from my friends in the Mesa Fiber Arts Guild, and, sometimes, even they make mistakes. Big mistakes.
It gives one hope.