Are you the kind of knitter who sets your mind on a project and monogamously stitches away until completed? Your sweater collection is a sight to behold, you have a shawl for every occasion, and the handknit socks clamor for space in your drawers.
Maybe it’s all about the challenge, with fingers always itchy to try a new technique. You’re absolutely mad about marlisle, cable crazy, or batty about brioche.
But what if you don’t neatly fit into a category of process or product? Looking at photos that other knitters post on Ravelry and social media, it might be difficult to avoid comparing their skill or speed to that of your own. Before you know it, you have a full-blown knitferiority complex.
Sonya is wearing: Joan Fuller by Ellen Mason
in Beaverslide Dry Goods Merino/Mohair 90/10; 100 Acts of Sewing Dress no. 2; and Pants no. 1.
With my monthly posts and photos, there’s a part of me that wishes I could freshen things up and throw a new cardigan or shawl into the mix. I confess to not banging out my Carbeth as I fully intended. Instead, as of this writing, it languishes on needles, with the sleeves joined, and the finish line tantalizingly close. (Editors’ note/spoiler: Sonya finished her Carbeth! We saw it on her at Rhinebeck.)
Tea Leaves Cardigan by Melissa LaBarre in AVFKW Toasted; Dress no. 2; and Pants no. 1.
Another sweater in my wardrobe is, for the most part, a superfluous thing. I won’t be cold without it, since there are ample woolens in my life. I share this not to fish for compliments about my knits, but rather to examine that compulsion to do more. What is satisfaction? Mick Jagger told us he couldn’t get any and perhaps he was right.
Cria by Ysolda Teague in Abundant Yarn & Dyeworks DK; modified Dress no. 1; and Pants no. 1.
Perhaps we want more because we believe that we alone are not enough. Most days I know that’s not true, but we all have insecurities and unless you live like an internet-free hermit, they’re exploited on a near daily basis. After all, it’s a well-known fact that a new lipstick color/sofa/yarn has the power to change your life/catch that man/really tie the room together. We are fed this exact promise across media of all forms. Especially surprising is how often our lives need improving. Sticking to convictions until a particular print or cut eventually comes back into style is always an option, but not one that many take. While there are garments that are considered timeless or classic, who are the arbiters of taste that bestow those designations?
Featherweight Cardigan by Hannah Fettig in AVFKW Farm Series yarn; Dress no. 1; and Pants no. 1.
Every time you get dressed, you can work with existing clothes in new ways. Instead of looking at the barrage of images as indicators of what we lack, we can view it as possibility. I wear what I make, and I make with the time and resources I have, which lately, is not much. That’s not completely true. The resources, in the form of fabric and yarn, are plentiful and seem to have no problem accruing. If there’s a category for stockpiling stash and knitting from it sporadically, it’s the one I would occupy. One with far too many possibilities.