I’m a cheater.

27 Mar

Oh dear.

I’ve fallen off the monogamy wagon. Fortunately for my husband, the offended party is just a pair of socks. Unfortunately for my husband, the socks are for him.

Let me clarify one thing, most knitters are not monogamous when it comes to projects. They keep several different items on needles around the house (and car, and office, and purse, etc.) so they can work on all kinds of things when different knitting moods strike.

As of late, I have tried to be a very monogamous knitter. I appreciatte monogamy in other areas of my life (i.e. books and marriage) and I thought that kind of clear-headed, no fuss, one-project-at-a-time approach would be rewarding in knitting. I was soooo wrong.

There are a few different things I really enjoy in patterns:

  • Lace
  • Texture
  • In-the-round construction
  • Occassional ribbing
  • Variety

Close examination of this list points to exactly where my problem with cheating started. Of the past four pairs of socks I’ve worked on (3 complete, 1 in progress) three of them are plain old ribbed socks. Yes, the ribbing is mixed up a bit and offset by pretty self-striping yarn, but only one of those four socks contained lace detailing and required a chart, which I so love to read.

By focusing on knitting gift socks, two pairs for men – who love nothing more than plain, boring socks, I have strayed away from the things I really enjoy in knitting. Sure, a couple of my favorite things made it into my projects, but now I’m bored. I picked up Ismael’s socks Friday night to get down to it, and I just couldn’t make it past a few rows. I strayed. I started holding other  yarn, and looking at other patterns. I even knit a guage swatch.

All the signs were there. I kept trying to knit his socks, but I was emotionally involved with other patterns, some of them not even for socks at all!

Then, today, it happend. I cast on a new project. It’s not even small. I wanted lace, and I went totally overboard and dove right into the Fir Cone Shrug by Veronik Avery from my new book, Knitting 24/7.

Copyright Veronik Avery

As you can see, that’s as lot of lace. And it’s in bulky yarn, the antithesis of sock yarn. I needed a break, so I turned to something so unlike socks that you can hardly imagine you make them through the same process. It’s huge, it uses 1,000 yards of bulky yarn and is worked flat and seamed together. It hangs off your frame and is designed to be slouchy, rather than hug your leg and ankle. This is the knitting equivalent of taking up with the pool boy.

But, I have had my eye on this pattern since I got the book earlier this month. I’d like to say I’ve kept my mind on my socks, but I’ve started to wander, if only in my head, before today. And you know, I’m not a bad person, or a bad knitter, I’m just a knitter with needs that a single pair of socks can’t satisfy. Ismael’s socks will still get made, and quickly, too. This new bulky, lacy, flat project will provide me with blessed relief from the monotony of knitting ribbed socks, and the socks can still hold a place in my heart and my project queue. Socks are tiny, and they will come with me to work, in the car, and wait with me in lines. My shrug will stay at home, where a big project belongs, and it will also be loved and worked on. I can juggle them, because I love them both, but for different reasons.

Hey, at least I’m  not sleeping with the pool boy.

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