Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Knitting and Crochet Blog Week - Day 2 Skill +1UP

Day Two:  Skill + 1UP
Look back over your last year of projects and compare where you are in terms of skill and knowledge of your craft to this time last year. Have you learned any new skills or forms of knitting/crochet...?

Whew!  What a question to ask.  Well...2010 was an amazing year for my growth as a knitter.  I started the year crying every time I picked up my projects ( I had learned how to knit in 2009 while spending countless hours in the ER and ICU watching my father slowly die from lung disease) which was therapeutic but also very sad.  I had so many emotions tied to my knitting.  Maybe that is why I love spinning so much.  Every time I sit at my spinning wheel, I feel the weight of the world wash away from me.  Where some people are frustrated spinners, I find the rhythm of the treadle and drafting of the fiber calming yet get easily frustrated knitting.

When I first learned to knit I found myself surrounded by some amazing knitters with skills that were beyond compare.  Being an over-achiever, I wanted to knit like they did without realizing that they had been knitting for a long time and had worked to achieve that level.  I would get frustrated and...cry.  One snowy day in January 2010, my friend Holly decided that it was time for me to get some knitting confidence and learn to knit in the round.  I conquered the London Beanie and found a love for knitting hats and knitting in the round.

Before long, the frustration I had as a knitter slowly melted away and I started to understand patterns and my skill level better.  Instead of wanting to knit like other people, I started to find my own way and patterns that fit my style.  Although I have a dream list of lace patterns that I will one day knit, I finally understand that I don't have the skills or the patience to knit those projects...yet.  I am also learning that there is no need to rush the skill level.  There are so many patterns out there to enjoy that I have a lifetime to knit all of them that I adore.

I now enjoy knitting and I haven't cried while knitting in ages.  Oh, I grumble and bellyache but that is just my nature (said with a smirk).  Thanks to KellyJ at Your Local Yarn Shop, I now am knitting color work.  (Yes, it is helpful having the pattern writer just minutes from your farm).  The photo I am showing is the Winter's Rhythm Caplet that I knitted as part of a KAL at Your Local Yarn Shop.  I was super excited to finish this because I actually completed it on time with the rest of the group, it taught me new techniques plus I made some new friends while participating in the KAL.  Win/Win/Win

Who knows where the next year will lead in my knitting adventures.  I do know that socks are up next...


  1. Your FOs look great, and knitting in the round saves what I think is the worst part- sewing up. I have the opposite issue- I can happily knit for hours on anything but find spinning difficult as I have to concentrate so hard. Can't wait till you start socks, will be cheering you on all the way

  2. I totally agree about spinning your worries away.

    My shoulders end up really tense when I'm working on a new knitting technique. Socks are not very scary :)
    Try Silver's sock class (google it) :)

    I love the caplet :)

  3. Your projects look great. When I started knitting I bit off more than I could chew too. I learned since then to slow down XD

  4. Socks are easy! lol. I did my first pair of socks this year, and when I finished, I wondered why I was so scared of them! lol. I haven't done any color work really, unless stripes count, lol.

    you can do it!

  5. Hey, your completed capelet looks awesome!!!!!! Love, love, love it!

    But I bet your spinning skills have also improved because of the farm. And what about those animal and fiber-care skills? I bet they are top notch, too. :)

  6. The capelet looks awesome! :)

    While not nearly as sad or devastating, I also learned to knit during a difficult time -- I was on bed rest with a baby it took about 5 years to conceive. I was constantly waiting for the other shoe to drop, so to speak, constantly in fear I was going to miscarry. Picking up the needles for the first time probably wasn't the healthiest thing to do (I was SO frustrated learning, I can't even begin to tell you!) but it was the right thing in terms of distraction from my worries.

    One of these days I'd love to spin. I bought roving and a drop spindle. . . That's the thing I'm scared to conquer.

  7. I told you that you were a knitter!

  8. It will be interesting to see how your knitting progresses and what lovely things you make with your handspun.

  9. I'm glad that you found your knitting groove. Your caplet turned out beautiful and looks wonderful on you. Such great colors. Don't rush the learning process. Knitting, like spinning, is a craft for a lifetime, so enjoy the process.

  10. The capelet turned out beautifully!!!!!! Wowzer!! Thanks for sharing your knitting journey. It's been a long time since I started knitting and it's nice to have a chance to remember those beginning achievements and the feeling of accomplishment.

  11. First of all, I'm sorry to read about the passing of your father. I know how it feels to lose someone in the ohana so cherished. But I'm glad you found some solace in knitting and you certainly went through an amazing journey to become the knitter you are today. What a lovely capelet you made and in my favorite colors :O).

  12. hey, very nice blog. Poignant. I really like the alpacas on your header, too.