Monday, August 24, 2015

Frog Pond Reflections

Those of us who are fiber artists have taken many trips to the frog pond. We've gotten 2/3 way through a project and decided that we didn't like the pooling, the gauge or the yarn and pattern just were not right. With quite a bit of grumbling, and possibly some tears we start to rip back those carefully knit or crocheted stitches. There may even be a few choice words involved (considering I cuss like there's no tomorrow I know this from experience.)

There are also those projects that we never frog. They stay hidden away in their project bags. They get pushed back to the furthest corner of our WIP bin. Possibly worse, we just continue on stitching even though we know we will hate it. We think that it just looks horrible now and it'll get better as we go.

I'm thinking about this today because I'm staring at about 5 dropped stitches at the ending ribbing of my Gemini Pullover and trying to debate what to do. I've gotten pretty decent at picking up stitches in a straight stockinette piece. I've gotten good at it when using a worsted weight wool yarn. But, this pullover is being done in KnitPicks Shine Sport (I think?) and it's very slippery. I've also never successfully picked up stitches of a ribbed piece.

I have tried a number of times to knit this top and have failed miserably. Last year I cast it on no less than 5 times! It was always something! A dropped stitch here, lace mess up there, roommates cat decided to eat my damn needles...well you get the picture. This time around I am determined to get this top finished. I want to wear it when I go to Rhinebeck this fall!!!

I've decided I've become OK with frogging small projects. I've become ok with frogging halfway done projects as well. I just recently ripped out an almost completed Honey Cowl because the gauge was just not working and the way the yarn pooled made me ill. But, I will NOT rip out this sweater. I'm going to swallow my nerves and take it in to my LYS to see if I can get some help picking up the stitches. I'm also going to see if I can learn the best way to weave in the ends of this super slippery yarn. The skeins are small and I've had to add new yarn several times. The magic knot was NOT an option!

So, I guess the moral of the story is to pick your battles. Step back, take some deep breaths and move away from the project!! Ask yourself a few questions before you go vaulting towards the frog pond of doom.

  • Do I like the way this looks now?
  • Can I fix it?
  • Would the yarn be better suited for something else?
  • Is it something that can be played off as a "design element?"
  • How many F-bombs will I drop after I've ripped it out? 
Think about it and process it. Our arts are supposed to bring us joy. If they aren't then why do them? Even if you're a product stitcher there's no point in slogging through something all unhappily. That energy will stick to your project and be gross. 

So what do you think? What are your "frogpond rules?"

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