March 2, 2006

Side effects

One thing I loved about the Knitting Olympics, besides getting a really neat sweater out of it, (Which I love. I love it enough that I'm wearing it continuously. I love it enough that I'm thinking about using it as a pillowcase at night and enough that Joe cautioned someone about touching it without permission yesterday.) was the way that everyone seemed to learn some kind of lesson from it.

Some people learned that they could accomplish more than they thought in 16 days, some learned that turning a sock heel or doing fair isle wasn't that bad, and some people (and I admit that I sympathize) learned that the next time I get one of these crazy ideas they are going to click on over to a sane knitting blog before they get caught up in something that costs them 2 weeks of their lives. I'm surprised to discover these last two days that I apparently either can't be taught or didn't learn what I thought I did. One of the biggest lessons for me was the issue of project monogamy. Only working on one thing for 16 days. Only one thing? It was pretty difficult for me. I don't think I've ever gone more than 24 hours without a project change. I mean, I'll work on a sweater or something more or less consistently (Stop that. I do too.) but there's always a little bit of something else to make for a little variety. More than once in the process I felt myself jonesing for a change. A little lace, a buttonhole band, a little wee bit of a sock leg just to take the edge off of the whole thing.

I imagined that when I finished I would knit about 6 rows on 42 things. The opposite of project monogamy, rampant unfocussed little bit of everything knitting. When I realized (in that sleep-deprived maniacal place I was in at the end) that I actually could knit a Dale of Norway in 16 days, I felt some guilt and learned another lesson. There's suddenly no excuse for having 29 belligerently unfinished items hanging around. As I rolled into bed with my brand new sweater, I realized that a little more focus in my knitting life was entirely possible, even desirable, and I celebrated the lesson that the epic had taught me. Finished stuff is good, and it's not that hard to get. I vowed that while I probably had not been reborn as one of those productive "one project at a time" knitters, I would now crack down on some of the beautiful stuff lingering longingly about the linen closet, waiting for a moment in the sun.

That's why I'm so surprised to discover that immediately after learning this lesson, I've got wicked side effects.

It turns out that the whiplash from knitting a very traditional colourwork sweater on 3mm needles in sixteen days is an absolutely irresistible urge to knit a brand spanking new garter stitch scarf on big needles.


Not only that...but (and this is really unexpected) it's the only thing I want to knit.


Complete project monogamy.

Anybody else got olympic whiplash they weren't expecting?

Posted by Stephanie at March 2, 2006 1:54 PM