Orange: The Color of Failure


I haven’t blogged for almost two weeks now. For once, it’s not because I don’t have time (overtime is off, at least for awhile), or because I don’t have anything interesting to say. It’s because every time I sat down to blog last week, I got annoyed, then angry, and then a little depressed. My posts would start out with a few mild complaints, and by the end they were usually peppered with incoherent ranting in ALL CAPS, with lots of exclamation points and expletives. If you’re around me for any length of time, you know that my mouth could make the surliest sailor weak with shame, but even for me this was an awful lot of anger to be hurling around on the Intarwebs.

Knitting isn’t going so well lately (see above photos), and when my knitting is out of joint, I find myself feeling out of joint too. It’s easy for me to blog my knitting triumphs- who doesn’t love a happy ending? – but when it gets ugly, I never feel quite so ready to share.

I’m not shy about my imperfections, or embarrassed about making mistakes. You hear it all the time, and it’s true: mistakes are just a part of the process. If you knit long enough, you’ll figure out how to prevent and correct many errors, but you’ll never stop making them all together.

In Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, Dumbledore says that because his intelligence is far greater than average, his mistakes are far greater and more terrible than average too. The same can definitely be applied to knitting. The more adventurous and experienced you become as a knitter, the more complex your mistakes will become.

I know all that, really I do. I accept that I will have to rip things out and re-knit. I accept that I will twist stitches where they shouldn’t twist and drop them where they shouldn’t be dropped. My happy knitting experiences outweigh the bad ones by far. But for some reason, I feel like I should keep my knitting problems locked in a closet, as far away from the public eye as possible.

I hypothesize that my feeling of wanting to cover up the seedy underbelly of knitting stems from a desire for others, especially non-knitters, to see this craft as one that is largely pleasant and productive. I figure that if "the muggles" get wind of the fact that knitting doesn’t always turn out the way you want it to, and can occasionally bring the knitter to the brink of desperation, they’ll get scared off. It’s the same reason that you’re not supposed to tell pregnant women how awful labor is and how your baby mostly cries, poops, and throws up on you. (Maybe it’s okay before they’re pregnant, but definitely not after it’s already too late to turn back.)

Ah, confession really is good for the soul.

Anyway, I had started the Central Park Hoodie and I was absolutely in love. Everything was going fine, until I decided that I needed to adjust the depth of the armhole. After spending a couple hours pondering over the mysteries of recalculating the slope of the decreases and trying to self-measure my armpit to see how deep it actually is, I was forced to admit defeat and ripped my beautiful orange tweed back for the second time. I know it’s not the yarn’s fault, but I still feel like punishing it. ("Bad yarn! Back in the closet! No knitting for you!")

To sum it all up, I’m feeling very under-inspired at the moment. My last successful project was the Kitty Pi from Wendy Knits. I definitely want to make at least one more (extra large for Fat Louie, of course), but it doesn’t sound particularly fun at the moment. I’ve decided to swear off the knitting of all things with sleeves for the time being. I think the orange yarn might be destined to be a vest, but I’m pretty sick of looking at it. I started working on a little felted strawberry purse from the latest issue of Knitscene, but it is a pain in the ass. (More on that later.)


So anyway, I’m sorry for the downer of a post. Maybe I’ll get inspired and knit something awesome, which should lead to happier blogging.


1 Comment »

  1. Colleen said

    Dear Holly,I just looked at all the pictures of the cats. I love them. I had a black cat once named Yahoo’. I had to put him down several years ago and I still miss him. He would kiss me on my cheek and since he was a part outside cat, he had some fighting injuries. but, I loved him dearly. See you sunday, colleen

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