WIP Wednesday: Bee’s Knees Beret

I’m incredibly hard on myself when starting something new. Far beyond wanting to just grasp the basics quickly and not make too many egregious errors, I expect to start doing excellent work soon after I start. It turns out that this attitude has definitely followed me as I am learning to crochet. For better or worse, my crochet teacher Susanna enables this tendency to bite off more than I’m really sure I can chew.

After I finished my first crochet project, I was eager to grow my skills and produce something really impressive the second time around. But I never would have dared attempt the Bee’s Knees Beret from Crochetscene 2017 without significant prodding and encouraging from Susanna. (It’s also drop-dead gorgeous and a perfect match for some yarn I’d been sitting on, which always helps to push one over the edge of indecision!)

Bee’s Knees Beret

The gorgeous Bee’s Knees Beret from Crochetscene 2017.

For those who don’t know, Interweave’s crochet patterns aren’t rated by difficulty but by “focus required.” The Bee’s Knees Beret is scored a 3 out of 4, which means “Fair Amount of Focus Required.” This didn’t exactly leave me feeling confident.

“Ok,” I thought, “but how hard is this pattern?”

Susanna reassured me that I could do it, but that I would definitely have to focus. So far, she’s been right! It’s been an incredible learning experience working the Bee’s Knees Beret. I learned how to crochet in a circle with an adjustable ring, and I’ve become comfortable reading charts, which only a week ago looked like complete gibberish.

But I’ve also made a few mistakes. I’ve been diligent about fixing all of them, and it’s shown me a major difference between knitting and crochet. In knitting, you don’t necessarily have to rip the piece out all the way to the point where you made a mistake. You can drop one or two stitches back to the mistake and pick them up, working your way up through the fabric and correcting whatever went wrong. In crochet, you definitely have to frog all the way back to the mistake. At least it’s much easier to frog crochet than it is to frog knitting! Hopefully the worst mistakes are behind me as my fluency in reading patterns and charts continues to increase.

bee's knees beret

My Bee’s Knees Beret is rapidly approaching completion, and I’m only getting faster as I improve my chart fluency!

Don’t be afraid to take a bite out of a pattern that seems difficult. You’ll learn so much even through the mistakes, and you won’t make as many as you’re afraid you will. Or at least, I didn’t!

I want to hear from you! Tell me the story of your most ambitious crochet project, the one that really tested your skills and forced you to grow. It doesn’t have to be your most advanced project, but the one that really challenged you. How did it turn out? What did you learn from the experience? Share in the comments!

The Bee’s Knees Beret is Just the Beginning!

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