Friday, December 23, 2011

When Good Projects Go Bad

The Rule of Threes paid me a visit recently.  The mildest case involved a monster do-over caused by a simple miscalculation of yardage while using leftover skeins from my stash.  Not the end of the world, admittedly, but I did find myself frogging an entire monster body on Tuesday night - not how I'd hoped to spend the evening!

I also recently knit the Brier Toque (from Weekend Knits) with a gorgeous skein of Neighborhood Fiber Company Watershed Sock yarn that I bought at Article Pract several years ago on our west coast 'tour.'  The colorway is Glover Park, and I've been saving it for a special occasion.  The hat started out well enough, but after a while my bamboo needles (and fingers!) started to turn a deep forest green.  Uh oh.  Yet I pressed onward!

Once the hat was done, I tossed it in a nice bath of a bit of Eucalan and some cool water.  And the water turned green.  So I put it in another bath.  And another!  By the time the fourth bath rolled around, I was getting a little desperate, so I added a ton of vinegar.  Still green, but at least not as bad as before...
Third Rinse:  Not as bad....

...time to proceed to Step 2, the 'white glove test.'  Sadly, this project did not pass: observe the bright blue spots on what was once a very clean, white towel:


So, that happened.

My third failed project involves some beautiful yarn and a fantastic pattern...unfortunately, I royally screwed it up from the get-go.

I should preface this story by saying that I've never, in the eight-or-so years I've been knitting, made a mobius project - on purpose or otherwise.  I suppose I've been lucky that I've never accidentally twisted a cast-on when joining in the round, despite the countless socks, sweaters, etc. I've made that way. 

Guess I had some time to make up for, because I managed to twist the cast-on for my Botanical Cowl not once, but twiceTWICE!  Once, I could live with, but twice, not so much. 

So you'd think I'd rip it back and start again as soon as I noticed the problem, an inch or so into my work, right?  Nope.  I convinced myself it would be fun to do an accidental mobius.  I'd like to say I was blissfully unaware of how much I messed up, but perhaps it was denial - or laziness!  I kept thinking of all those cast-on stitches.  I didn't want to rip back and cast on 200+ stitches again, no way!

Ok, except for I worked to completion on this thing, and the end result is something I'm most likely going to rip out completely and knit again. 

That's just crazy.

But the yarn (Canopy Fingering in Sarsparilla from The Fibre Company) is gorgeous and soft and wonderful.  It doesn't want to live its life as a crappy twisty cowl, destined to become a cat bed in the bin of forlorn hand-knits.  It wants to keep me warm this winter and not be covered in cat fur.

So it's a lesson for the ages:  If you think something is wrong, don't ignore it - rip it out and start again (or at least work back to the place where you think you made a mistake)!  Continuing to work on a project in hopes that it will magically fix itself by the time you bind off is a waste of your time (not that you need me to tell you that - I only wished I'd told myself!). 

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