01 April 2007

A Crisis of Faith

This last week has been one of frustration, mingled with ennui. And flu.

I've been what's termed "poorly" here. It started last week and has just borne real fruit this weekend (Friday really) - sinus infection, sneezing, pressure behind the eyes, headache, achy, seriously tired. I wasn't as bad last weekend, and expected this weekend to be much the same. Sadly, I was wrong.

It's been three days since I've been out of my pj's long enough to do anything other than change a key piece of clothing so that I don't smell as bad as I look. It's been more days than that since I've been outside my front door.

In addition to this, I am having trouble with my crafting.

I had the same problem last year, right before we moved, when I felt that my desires and my desired projects far exceeded my skill set. Worse, due to some mitigating circumstances, I was forced to reckon with my growing collection of craft supplies and came to the conclusion that I have more accoutrements than I have talent.

I participated in an ATC swap on swap-bot and I struggled. The theme was "black and white only" and, though it sounded like exactly the sort of theme that I could work, none of the ideas that I came up with seemed to work. I couldn't convince myself that the ideas and the cards that I liked best would be well received. I didn't want my swap partners to be disappointed when their ATCs arrived, but I was disappointed in them when they went out. I hope that spirit doesn't follow my cards and that the recipients do like them, but I can't help feeling that I let my swap partners down.

Worse, still, I keep trying - and failing - at knitting project after knitting project. I tried Fetching from Knitty... I tried felting a small clutch from the One Skein book... I thought about doing the Irish Hiking Scarf from Hello Yarn. It was only after I started Fetching that I remembered that I don't know how to knit in the round with double-pointed needles. Nor do I know how to cable. Hrrumph. I knitted the clutch and my seaming was better than it had ever been (thanks, kiddo; you know who you are), but the felting was a complete and total disaster - the piece never fully felted, it shrunk like all get out, but some of the stitches were still visible. I'd like to blame it on my front-loading machine, but everyone here has a front-loading machine and lots of people felt. So I moved on to the Irish Hiking Scarf. It was then that I remembered, after printing the pattern and sitting down to knit, that I still didn't know how to cable. Bugger.

And just to wholly deflate my already sagging ego, I surfed over to knit-one-one and realized that Punk Rawk Purl, whom I greatly and dearly admire, learned to knit a mere two months before I did and is now teaching classes, rather than sitting around of a weekend lamenting her abject lameness.

How do some people's skills get that far ahead, that fast? Is it because they knit every day? Are they inherently better at it?


So, this weekend, I have practiced making bobbles and am teaching myself to cable without a cable needle via Grumperina's tutorial.

I am determined to get past this.

I know, I know... I will. I'm just having a small quandary.

In my head, I hear Chevy Chase as Ty Webb telling me, "Just let it happen. Be the yarn. Be the yarn, Danny."


Deborah said...


We swapped on swap bot. Keep at the knitting, it truly only takes practice and a good friend to help you with tips.

Anonymous said...

Stop worrying! You will get there. Cabling is much easier than it looks. Do you have dpns? You could use one of those as a cable needle. I was going to say feel free to ask me anything...unless you do it here, we can't do that can we, d'oh!

Good luck, patience is the key.

Anonymous said...

now all I can see in my head is a groovin' gopher!

Anonymous said...

Hi Paula,
I am your Swap-Partner who received your b/w-ATC's and i just gave you a "Heart"-rating for them, because i thnik, they are great!!! After i rated i thought, i like to see what that person does other "stuff" and went here on your blog - just to find out that you weren't pleased with them. So, don't worry, your fears where unfounded!!!
Greetings from Germany and get well soon !!!

Emy said...

I think you are having a crisis of confidence...you are better than you think you are.

I promise.

And really, it's the same thing as "How do you get to Carnegie Hall?" "Practice, practice, practice." Just keep plugging away at it, and MAKE MISTAKES and learn from them, and eventually you won't make so many mistakes. Ask me how I know.