the art of slow


The cable owl was actu­al­ly a real­ly quick project, but I’m think­ing about knit­ting in gen­er­al. I have been avoid­ing knit­ting for quite a few years now, shy­ing away from pat­terns I actu­al­ly like, telling myself that “it would take too long,” and “I don’t have the patience for this”. Cro­chet­ing is indeed much quick­er, more straight­for­ward, and more of the “instant grat­i­fi­ca­tion,” I guess. A cro­chet cardi­gan would prob­a­bly take me no more than a week if I work on it every evening.

On the oth­er hand, I have been work­ing on this knit cardi­gan since the begin­ning of Feb­ru­ary, and I have to say, I’ve quite enjoyed the process.

This is actu­al­ly the begin­ning of the sec­ond sleeve, the last com­po­nent of the pat­tern I have to knit before sewing every­thing togeth­er. I think what I like about knit­ting now, is the process of tak­ing the time to do some­thing real­ly well, with­out think­ing about whether it would be worth it, and whether it is tak­ing too long. And more impor­tant­ly, it is dis­cov­er­ing that I do have the patience for this. Not only for knit­ting, but oth­er things as well. Oth­er per­haps more impor­tant things in life that requires patience, will­ing­ness to invest, concentration, perseverance, and hard work. I find knit­ting a good men­tal exer­cise for those things.

My recent attempt in knit­ting has sud­den­ly opened the door to tons of beau­ti­ful knit­ting pat­terns — now I feel like I’m able to make these things! Not that I did­n’t know how to knit before — my mom’s taught me how to knit when I was in grade three — but I had just always thought of myself as, you know, a cro­cheter, who would­n’t both­er with knit­ting. Until now. That said, I still don’t know how to read most knit­ting short­hands, and I don’t know how to fix mis­takes like dropped stitch­es, which can be a prob­lem. I used to be able to just ask my mom when I lived at home. But now I’ve found the inter­net to be a won­der­ful thing when I need some expla­na­tion or demon­stra­tion. A friend once told me that is help­ful, and I total­ly agree.

In fact, that’s where I learned what c4b and c4f mean when I was attempt­ing the knit cable owl pat­tern :D

I used the alpaca wool I got for Christ­mas. The one on the right is the first one I made and the nee­dles I used were too small and it looked a bit uptight (even surly :/). So I tried again with a larg­er nee­dle and the cable twists looked a bit bet­ter. It took me a long time to find the per­fec­t iri­des­cent but­tons for its eyes. And then I sewed a piece of felt on its back to make it a bit stiffer and to attach a pin to it.

I think I will make more in dif­fer­ent colours! :D

Anoth­er thing I like about knit­ting is that it uses less yarn. I heard that it uses 40–60% less yarn than cro­chet­ing. I don’t remem­ber where I heard that, and I’m not sure whether I remem­ber those num­bers cor­rect­ly. But either way, I’ve found that a ball of yarn goes a long way in knit­ting. So yes­ter­day I ordered from the library all three of the One Skein Won­ders books, so I can put my very large (and grow­ing) stash of sin­gle (and may par­tial) skeins of yarn to good use.

The next knit­ting project will be for my mom, because she gave me all her nee­dles :P and because her birth­day is com­ing up in May (yes, it will take me that long to fin­ish the project). I found a cardi­gan that she might like, it has a lace pat­tern and involves cir­cu­lar nee­dles, so it will be a bit of a chal­lenge, but I hope to be able to fig­ure it out.

And just to clar­i­fy, that I am in no way turn­ing my back on cro­chet­ing — I still find it enjoy­able and fun, espe­cial­ly when it comes to mak­ing plush­es. But it is good to know that I can enjoy knit­ting as well.

Any­way, back to stitch­ing I go…

Have a won­der­ful Thursday!

2 thoughts on “the art of slow

  1. I so love this owl pat­tern and final­ly made two. The first was a brown bulky yarn. He is now over at my Mom’s, hang­ing out in one of her plants. The oth­er I made in worsted weight yarn and will make him into a pin. Such a sweet pat­tern and works up so quick­ly. My kind of project!

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