Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Day Two of Knitting and Crochet Blog Week: Skill + 1UP

Day Two: 29th March. Skill + 1UP
Look back over your last year of projects and compare where you are in terms of skill and knowledge of your craft to this time last year. Have you learned any new skills or forms of knitting/crochet (can you crochet cable stitches now where you didn’t even know such things existed last year? Have you recently put a foot in the tiled world of entrelac? Had you even picked up a pair of needles or crochet hook this time last year?

I've always thought of myself as an adventurous knitter.  After I re-taught myself to knit a number of years ago (in a then unsuccessful bid to quit smoking, since successful), I began to go through interesting patterns that required me to use a new skill.  I learned how to twist knit, lace knit, knit in the round, knit in 3D, felt, cable, the list could go on.  Since then, I've used these techniques in my own designs as well as in new patterns that I've had a go at.

Now, with that said, when I look back at the last year, I am amazed at how lacking in new skills it is.  Not that it is completely bereft.  I did learn to shape a triangle shawl with increases on this lovely number:

This is the Multnomah Shawl by Kate Flagg, so beautiful and easy to knit up.  It was also my first journey into the world of sock yarn knitting.  There's a new skill for ya.  Learning to use a new yarn is almost a new skill I suppose.  Feeling it run through your fingers, watching the drape develop as you knit it up.  Yup, that's a 1UP fer sure!

I also had a lovely time playing with color knitting this year.  While I loved using the sock yarn, I also wanted to experiment with chunky yarns and so bought 5 skeins of Lamb's Pride Bulky to play with while I was visiting with my mom in Maine.  I created 5 different hats with various combinations and using stranding techniques.  Here's a couple of them:

A super fun project and really fun to play with one yarn over a few similar but different projects.  And certainly a 1UP in terms of color usage skill level.

It's fun actually to look back over these and to see that yes, I did learn some new things this year.  But did these grow my craft?  And if not, then how has my craft grown this year if not necessarily in technique?

Crafting has transformed from a hobby that I did here and there to keep my hands busy, make me smile, and just have the joy of creating things, to something that is part of my daily thoughts and planning as well as a small business.  That's a pretty large growth curve.  On a small level, there's things that have changed as a direct result of this transition.  Things like my attention to detail and finishing have improved as I can't stand to send something out that has shoddy craftsmanship.  And I've delved into new colors and textures as well and that has expanded my experience and creative thoughts.

But with all that, the growth that most interests me is the internal growth that I've experienced.  I've discovered that I can stick with something for longer than a moment.  I can create beautiful things.  I have good ideas.  I am a good knitter!  These little things add up to one big 1UP!!   And it's one that fills me up with joy and pride and wonder at the power of ME!

Not a bad 1UP for the year huh?  I'll take it.


  1. big face little face!! matthew will be so proud

  2. I definitely think that our hobbies should boost our self esteem and make us proud. Your shawl (and your little man) are gorgeous!

  3. Love that shawl! keep it up, Molly! I'm right there with ya!

  4. I would also say that this blog is a symbol of you growing your craft. Being able to document and track your projects in a professional but personal way should definitely count as a skill!