Monday, August 31, 2009

Knit-Along: Elemental Changes Scarf from Aylin’s Woolgatherer - Day 3

Ah, imperfection...


Section B was delightfully uneventful. Well, except for the part where I think I did a row twice and flipped the work over, but since this is essentially symmetrical and reversible, no real harm was done.


Which brings me to an essential truth of knitting: lives are not at stake here.


Perfection isn’t necessarily what we’re after. I’m a big proponent of the Zimmerman saying, “if a man running for his life wouldn’t notice it, it’s not a mistake.”


That’s not to say that I don’t go back and correct things when I find them. I do. But I’m not likely to pull out 15 rows to fix a non-catastrophic error. If it’s really going to mess things up, I’ll fix it. But if it isn’t likely to cause great harm, I’ll embrace the imperfection that is my life and keep on with it.


This, I understand, is what made Julia Child the culinary sensation that she was (although I’ve yet to catch the movie Julie and Julia but it is on my “go see” list). Julia didn’t expect perfection, just enjoyment. That’s how I approach my knitting. With two teenagers in my life, perfection left the building a couple of months ago. Enjoyment is a worthy goal. And yes, enjoyment does include getting it right, just not at the expense of my sanity. And my sanity needs to make progress on its knitting.


It’s the pesky double daisy motif that’s doing me in, and I have three more chances to perfect my technique (more if I plan to lengthen the scarf, which I’m seriously considering doing because I’ve got the yarn and at six feet tall, I’ve got the altitude). The Fat Lady ain’t sung a single note yet, kiddos.


The other life lesson here--one especially true of both teenagers and lacework--is that something isn’t finished until it’s finished. What it looks like now isn’t a true indicator of what it will look like washed and blocked. “Raw” lacework often resembles a fuzzy jellyfish, all puckered and inelegant. Once it’s blocked and stretched, it’s a whole new animal--delicate and elegant and all those things we want when we knit lacework. Teenagers are the same way. What they look like now is only the “raw” form of the adult. They, too, have to stretch and soak to find their elegance. I’d do well--as a mother and a knitter--to extend a little grace and patience on all fronts.


On to Section C...

1 comment:

Danica/Dream said...

Love this! I think I told you that my friend told me that Jewish women always have a flaw in their prayer shawls because only God can be perfect. I figure the imperfections in our knitting is what makes it unique.