January 24, 2011

024: Light at the end of the carpal tunnel

I am five inches away from being finished with a sweater I've been knitting since October or November of last year (pattern from 100% rain, for the interested).  It's taken forever, knitting on skinny needles with yarn approximately the same weight as embroidery floss.  The rows of tiny, neat stitches look great an all, but I had to take a three-week break to give the shooting pains in my wrists a chance to clear up.  I cannot wait to be done with this godforsaken project, but I know that when I cast off (weave the ends in, sew the buttons on, wash and block, and probably figure out how to fix the hem...) I'll just sit back, look at it, and think it's the prettiest thing I ever did make.

I love knitting, but I inevitably hit a wall during every project where the prospect of going on is unbearable, because my fingertips are raw or dry or my wrists hurt or I'm sick of doing stranded colorwork, or I screwed up three rows back and I have to rip out all my hard work to fix it, or because I'll never finish it by Christmas.  But I do eventually pick it up again, because the end result is so rewarding.  I still use a scarf I knitted in high school or college that's about seven feet long and in this crazy variegated colorway called Fiesta, which is mostly yellow, but also includes every other color in the spectrum.  I've knitted gifts for two of my friends, and I'm probably proudest of the work I did on those, even if they never wear or look at them (the last thing I finished was a pair of Star Trek mittens for one of my college roommates, done in gold with captain's bars on the cuff and Starfleet insignia on the backs of the hands; this is my proudest achievement as a knitter).

Perhaps as a result of my nearly-finishing this marathon sweater, I've spent the last week or so on the hunt for knitting-related novels and watching episodes of Marple from a few years ago, back when Geraldine McEwen was playing the batty old dear.  Her knitting technique was particularly endearing for some reason.

I had a point once, I swear.


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