Tag Archive: knitting


Beginnings

Yesterday I posted on Facebook a lot. I got very excited about the documentary series that I was watching and when I get excited about stuff i put it on Facebook/Twitter. One of the things I said had nothing to do with documentaries, however, but it was sort of related in that I was knitting a hat for someone whilst I was watching the documentaries. As amateur knitters will know, it’s hard to find a pattern online for something that you want to make because you have an image in your mind of what you want the thing to look like, but you don’t have the skill or knowledge to make it exactly like that and there usually isn’t a pattern exactly like what you want. Even if there is a good pattern, there is usually something wrong with it, such as it ends up looking different than the little pictures or that it takes circular or dpn needles (<– “dpn needles” is redundant, I realize, but I couldn’t figure out a different way to write it) and you only have straight needles (this is a big problem if you’re trying to make a hat or a glove).

I usually have a lot of these problems when I use patterns, but I think I’m getting to the point where I can manipulate a pattern to do what I want it to do.

My current project is for a former teacher(/friend) of mine. I’ve already blogged about this. It’s a bearded hat. I had many adventures trying to figure out the beard part (of course, now I have a beard and, like, seven mustaches, so I don’t really mind all that much), but that issue was resolved, thankfully. I saved the easy part of the project for last: the beanie. I’ve knitted a beanie before, so I figured that it wouldn’t be all that big of a deal, seeing as there are a million patterns on the internet for hats. I even found one for straight needles fairly quickly, to my amazement.

I had the yarn and the pattern and I had my documentaries and I was rather pleased with myself. It didn’t take me long to finish the hat (considering that I have a million problems of AP Chemistry homework at any given moment), unfortunately, the pattern that was supposed to fit an adult’s head barely fit on my own head. My head is far smaller than the person’s head that I’m making the hat for. Not that I’m calling his head big, but it is in relation to mine.

This isn’t that big of a deal, seeing as I’m used to having to do projects over in order to get the result I was going for. I adjusted the pattern so that it will hopefully fit the person’s head and then I began to cast on. As I complained about on Facebook, I hate the cast on and first row of knitting projects. The stitches are always really tight and there’s a ton of yarn-slack in between all the stitches and it’s really annoying. I put this general complaint in my Facebook status and made an attempt to connect with people who also knit. The first comment, however, was someone who didn’t knit, but understood that beginning something was usually the hardest part of the project.

I think most people would agree with that (except for over-thinkers who just like to disagree with every cliche’ ever…. *cough*), though there could be a reasonable argument against it. For example, life starts out pretty easy for us. We don’t have to feed ourselves or anything, we just lay there and cry. Actually, in the documentary I was watching, they were discussing all the things that babies do to bond with their caregivers and make sure that they do what they want them to do…

An example in favor of this idea was the month of August. August is the second month of CampNaNoWriMo and I was going to write the sequel to the novel that I had written in June. However, I was very tired from doing stuff the week before and when I sat down to start the novel, I got stuck after the first paragraph and just gave up. I’m notorious for giving up on things easily. It’s not that I’ll give up on anything that seems hard at the beginning, but I will give up on it if I don’t think it’s worth my effort. Granted, most things aren’t really worth the effort for me, but there are some things that I am passionate about and I put a lot of effort into them.

Another way to cope with things being hard at the beginning is procrastination. I’ve written about this already, as well, here. I also procrastinate doing things that will be hard, even if I enjoy doing them. I actually enjoy sitting down and doing my homework because I usually think that the topic is interesting (unless it’s math)(Okay, some math is compelling, I just don’t like doing things I’m not good at). Unfortunately, I have been far too exposed to the negative connotations that accompany homework and therefore I procrastinate on it. The problem is that, while I’m procrastinating something that I really should do, it sort of feels…. good? I mean, finishing things and not having things to do feels nice (albeit weird), but when I’m not doing something that I dread doing, I feel like I’m resting.

There are some people (my father) who can’t stand to lay in bed once they’ve initially awakened. I love it, however. Instead of having boring things to think about (I never have boring thoughts), your thought-process is half-way in a dream and I LOVE dreaming. I like how it feels to be dreaming. Even when it’s a scary dream. It feels nostalgic. Also, I feel like when I wake up and have to deal with being awake, it’ll be terrible, so I don’t want to start the day. Not that I get to sleep in very often. when I do, however, i use the incentive that when i wake up I get to eat food and I like eating food even more than I like sleeping or eating.

So, if you were expecting some inspirational end to this blog-post wherein I tell you how important it is to begin things and try things and whatnot, I’m not going to. Stop being so passive and make your own list of reasons why it’s important to start things. I’m too lazy.

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Knitting versus Crocheting

First of all, I have no idea why old people are allowed to knit. It would seem that only old ladies knit or crochet. They shouldn’t be allowed to knit because apparently holding your arms up and working on something in front of you puts a lot of strain on your back and shoulders. I can attest to this because my physical therapist told me not to knit (or do the dishes) because it would make my shoulders sore and he is right. Whenever I spend a lot of time knitting, my shoulders get stiff and hurt. Naturally, I don’t listen to my physical therapist and spend a whole lot of time knitting stuff anyway, but I do everything else he says, so it’s not so terrible… right?

Anyway, recently I have been working on a project that internet-savvy people probably know about: a bearded hat. It’s pretty much a beanie with a knitted beard attached to the front. I’d put a picture here, but I’m lazy. Go Google it.

I did a little bit of research before I started the project to try to scope out what pattern would be the best for what I was imagining in my head. After much Googling, I had decided one thing; a beard that is crocheted would probably look better than one that is knitted. The problem being, of course, that I cannot crochet. I’m pretty sure that I was taught to at one point in my life, but I think I learned to knit four separate times before I stopped forgetting, so my learning to crochet previously was pretty irrelevant.

Instead of trying to wade through my mother’s explanation of amateur crocheting, I turned to my trusty internet to learn how. It took me several days of talking about learning how to crochet before I actually acted on it, but one of the most common things that I heard whilst talking about learning to crochet was that it is easier than knitting.

Knitting is pretty freaking easy, in my opinion, but all of these crocheting people that I spoke to kept saying that it was way too  hard for them. Quite frankly, I didn’t believe them. Only one person made any sense to me, saying that whichever thing you learn first, knitting or crocheting, is the easiest for you to understand.

Apparently the people I talked to had learned to crochet before they’d learned to knit and thus found it harder to knit. This interests me a lot in the same way that languages interest me. When people grow up learning a language that is a different language than English, I find it inconceivable that they can make any sort of sense out of anything. That actually sounds sort of ridiculous when I write it out, but I have a hard time understanding the concept of language in general (which is probably why I find myself so fascinated by it).

Eventually, after buying some supplies, I began my knitting experience. It went terribly. I can understand knit-speak and I can pretty much understand any sort of instructions because I’m familiar with the structure and how the loops of yarn fit together, but even the beginner instructions for crocheting stumped me. The loops didn’t look anything like the loops in knitting and I had no way to identify what loop was being talked about. I’m never really impressed with the quality of videos, so I didn’t go into video tutorials. What I need is to find one of my old-lady neighbors and have them teach me how to crochet things. Or I could just pay one of them to crochet me a beard.

I did finally find a pattern for knitting a beard that I don’t hate, but it’s a little uneven and I had to change the pattern a little bit. Unfortunately, the person I’m giving this bearded hat to thinks I’m a genius, but he’s also an extremely evolved individual that will probably be able to handle the fact that I am kind of a failure at doing things.