Monday, December 04, 2006

Not very nice

David, who has just completed two beautiful knits and is on the verge of completing two more (pictures coming soon), was looking for a new project. I thought of a couple of things for which I had yarn--and he chose the Knitty Satchel. Now note that he chose this project knowing that it was on my holiday knitting list for my brother. In other words, he offered to HELP ME WITH HOLIDAY KNITTING. David is taking the lead on this project but the plan is that I'll knit a bit of it and so will our 7yo son.

After knitting the bottom and picking up the stitches around it that form the body of the bag, David knit a row back and then joined in the round to knit in a circle. By knitting a row back, it made the reverse stockinette side of the base rectangle on the outside--inside out--while the walls were in regular stockinette.

After knitting a few inches, David showed it to me and I pointed out the mistake. A decision was made (and we disagree about who really made it) that we could live with it. He kept going.

Then 7yo Son knit a few rows. He's been doing "Art Knitting" lately--meaning he just knits and makes yarn-overs and K2togs wherever he feels will make the most artistic impact. Very cool. But the habit that he has gotten into made it easy to create some big honking yarn-overs in this project without really thinking about it.

Then David knit a few more inches.

The holes were so big I thought they would show even after heavy felting. So I dropped down to correct them.

Ever tried to drop yarn-overs out of your knitting while you are using size 13 needles? Unbelievable ladders....

So we could have lived with the holes and told my brother they were where his nephew knit. He would have laughed with pride.

And he certainly would not have dreamed that the reverse-stitch base was not intentional.

But I couldn't live with it.

After I saw what a mess-greater-than-mess I had created out of the repairs of the yarn-overs, I knew I had to rip it and knit it back.

And while I was ripping, my perfectionist streak got the better of me and I realized how close I was to the pickup. I could just rip back to there and make things right...

This was not very nice. This was not necessary for anybody but my own garlic-breathed internal critic. And it makes other people either angry or hurt. Or both.

I apologize. I'll fight the nasty liar harder next time.


Anonymous said...

I think about those first few things I knit and how I wore them proudly despite their being riddled with errors. I just couldn't do that now. After a bit we all sort of forget about the early days and the joy of making something with our very own hands for the first time.

Nothing wrong with wanting it to be perfect, though. I think your family is probably pretty grateful to have someone like you who attends to the details and finds the pitfalls in life. It takes different people with different strengths to make a working family!

Sara Skates said...

Oh dear. Deep breaths all around. Truly I believe that in some ways we are twin souls separated sometime in the past - I can totally put myself in your shoes.

I'd probably blame the dog but then it's pretty likely that he'll eat anything left out...

You know, part of learning how to knit is learning how to read knitting and easily fixing stuff along the way. I totally get their hurt, but I also get your process - and that you didn't do it from the perspective of them being "bad" or not good enough.

Kat said...

I have not come to that point in knitting myself yet. However, there is a perfectionist lurking within who could point out every error I've made on my knitting. Even my "It's just a learning experience so it's ok" rationalizing hasn't subsided the little voice pointing out the mistakes.

I will say that my inner perfectionist has been loudly silenced by one thing - - my absolute fear of ripping back to a certain point and knitting on from there. I mean the thought of intentionally taking a needle out of stitches I haven't just bound off and re-inserting it down the line is just nightmare inducing!!

That being said - I so wish I knew what I was doing more in order to do that. There have been times I've frogged the whole thing (not very far along though) just because I questioned myself on going back a little.

TheAmpuT said...

Every Tag-Team knitting project I have been involved wtih has had it's own particular issues.

I'm reflecting back on a "each knitter takes a row of a prayer shawl" project (where someone threw in a row a neon fun fur when the rest was all earthtoned wools). And another time when our SnB did the "everyone knit a square for the baby blanket" thing (and a few folks blew off gauge creating seaming issues).

Right now I'm in the middle of a knitting dilemma of my own similar to yours (ripping v. perfectionism), and I'm not even having to consider the feelings of anyone else! And even in the aforementioned scenarios where I did need to consider other's feelings, they weren't the feelings of loved ones/people I live with!

Sounds like this one was a toughy, but what a cool little life lesson.
I love knitting for that :-)


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