In Which Sandi Visits The Frog Pond

Bye-bye to the Blue Tank…

I was very amused by your suggestions of cross-stitch pictures and tee-shirts with "The Swatch is Good. The Swatch is Wise. Listen to the Swatch." emblazoned across them. Personally, I think I need this message engraved on the inside of my eyeglasses so I cannot possibly forget it.

I would just like to know why it is so darned hard to LISTEN TO THE SWATCH? What happens between the time we swatch and the time we are needle-deep into a project, blithely knitting something that appears to pretend that the Swatch never existed?

Not listening to the Swatch (or not swatching in the first place) can cause Knitted Objects to behave badly, and in some cases, turn into long-standing denizens of the Land of UnFinished Objects. If a particular piece of knitting spends too much time off in UFO Land, then perhaps it is time to re-evaluate one's commitment to that particular long-distance relationship. Painful though it may be, sometimes it is time to ask the Final Questions: "Am I really going to finish this? Do I really WANT to finish this?"

It's tough to make that Final Decision To Frog, after you have put time, energy, and thousands of knitted stitches into a project. But a knitter's gotta do what a knitter's gotta do, even if it means letting go, turning over a new leaf, and ripping out a bunch of knitting.

I reached that point this past week, as I looked over the remaining 17 UFOs in my possession. I evaluated, and came up with three projects that I no longer felt committed to: a pair of green socks, a woolly cardigan, and a blue tank top.

So long, Green Socks…

The green socks were the first to go, as they were an impulse cast-on, one of those ill-conceived projects where you just simply MUST cast on something, but you don't really have a plan, nay, not even a pattern in mind. (Am I the only one who does this? Please say I am not.)

Next to go to the Frog Pond was the partially-knit woolly cardigan, lacking one front and the sleeves. Well… OK. Also lacking were my entire set of NOTES on the pattern, which was a Sandi original and is now lost in the mists of time due to an unfortunate misunderstanding between myself and my cat Sparrow over the finer points of distinction between a scratching post and my knitting notebook. (Dear Sparrow. He really does love so much to be involved in my crafts, but he's a weensy bit over-enthusiastic at times.) I could count stitches on the remaining pieces and re-create the pattern, but it wasn't an earth-shaking design anyway. So: Off to the Frog Pond with the Partial Cardi, and my UFO count is down by two.

Farewell, Woolly Cardi!

Finally, The Blue Tank Top. This one actually made it all the way to the seaming stage, but when I tried it on, it was way too big. I think this is the piece of knitting that caused the LightBulb of Negative Ease to go off in my head, pre-Hot Tomato. I made the Blue Tank a bit larger than my actual measurements, and it just kind of hung on me, instead of looking fitted and svelte. Alas, in this case, the Swatch was once again Wise and Good and it told me that there was no way to make the tank fit, short of cutting it to size. So it, too, has visited the Frog Pond.

I am now down to 14 UnFinished Objects. I feel strangely light and free. Plus: Now I have more yarn to knit other things with! Whoo!

Are there any projects lurking in your UFO pile which you can let go of? How do you make that Final Decision to Frog or Not To Frog? A bona-fide Work-In-Progress is one thing, even multiple Works-In-Progress, but what about some of those projects you all wrote about which have been sitting in your closets for YEARS? Maybe it's time to set all that yarn free so it can be used for a new project, one you'll loveā€”and maybe even actually finish!

Next time: Ways to tame all the curly yarn that is the end result of a Frogging Session.

Happy Halloween! In honor of this holiday when dressing up as something from the Land Of Make-Believe is something even grownups do, our featured pattern of the week is the Make-Believe Crowns. I promise not to tell if the person you knit one of these for is yourself. Try wearing a crown whilst doing the dishes or vacuuming and see if that doesn't put a smile on your face!

Sandi Wiseheart is the editor of Knitting Daily.

What's on Sandi's needles? Mwhaaaaa…FOURTEEN UFOS! The pullover for my husband is nearing the armholes, and I am considering the best way to proceed with a certain pair of lace socks.

Post a Comment