Freedom and Irresponsibility

Exactly one day too late, I finished Mithril. One day too late, that is, to participate in Susan Pandorf’s lovely KAL giveaway; it’s not like the yarn went bad. Although you might suspect it from how it looked when it came off the needles.

Like anything lace, it would take some water and pins to turn this mass of questionable stitches into something beautiful. I procrastinated until I had a futon-full of blocking to do, and went to town – forgetting, of course, that even if you have an excellently huge blocking space, you’re limited by the number of pins you own. Oops. The sleeves rumpled in the corner got blocked later.

Mithril got priority, though. It had been on the needles since February, if I remember right, and something had to come off my untenably long list of UFOs.

For a photo shoot, I took it along on our first trip to the Fire Escape, a little coffee shop stationed in a volunteer fire department in a nearby town. It’s freakin’ adorable, and I felt like a nice contrast in my green to their themes of red, brown, and beige.

“The ability to preform”? Not sure what that means. But they’re admirably gender neutral!

This pattern was so much fun. Not just because it’s original, entertaining, beautifully imagined, and surprisingly wearable, but because it’s just fun to get to knit something with no (real) deadlines, no customers to please (you know I love you), no edits to make, nothing to check and double check. I just knit the thing.

Still, I think I might have taken my freedom a little too far, because I made more mistakes on this pattern than… well, a lot. I somehow took the license to knit something on my own as license to not really pay attention. When I make this pattern again (and believe me, I will be knitting this again), there are a lot of things I will be doing differently.

1) I will use a yarn that’s actually fingering weight, since that’s what the pattern calls for.

2) I will use beads.

3) I willfollow the pattern and not add a superfluous netting area in the short rows under the armpit.

4) I will do as told and block the pattern before I sew it up.

5) Or, if I flake out and don’t do that, I will make sure that I at least block the fronts to be the same shape. Remotely.

6) I will, again, read the pattern and do actually twisted ribbing on the edges instead of some mistake-stitch mess.

7) I will sew the seams instead of improvising an awkward three-needle bind-off since I’m in class and don’t have any tapestry needles on me.

So it’s not my best bit of pattern following, but it’s impressive nonetheless. Susan’s patterns are like that. I particularly love the little plants on the back that remind me of the silver dollar plants that grow in my grandmother’s pine tree grove. It’s the bits of lace magic like this that would never occur to me, so I’m glad Susan thinks of these things instead.

What are you knitting (or otherwise crafting) that’s just for you, with no strings attached? Does that make you more or less anal about how you execute it?

3 thoughts on “Freedom and Irresponsibility

  1. Linda says:

    I have had great fun knitting up 2 sweaters for 2 daughters of a friend; 1 is 10 and 1 is 6. I have a patter to follow, but basically I have been making it up as I go along. Drop shoulders and straight stitches are such a relief after so many fitted, complicated sweaters. They don’t need the sweaters until this fall, so I’ve got lots of time. I was able to do most of it while reading to Bethany during the spring semester. It won’t take long to finish them up.

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  2. […] EDITED TO ADD: I’m sure it’d help if I reminded you what the pattern was. It’s Mithril, a lace vest, and I’ve knit it before. […]

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