Sunday, October 27, 2013

The Sweater... An 8 year Retrospective

Recently my mom inspired me by finishing a needlepoint project she had started when she was pregnant with my brother, Tom. Apparently the third kid is the one that puts an end to crafting.  If you know my family at all you know that this project didn't lay in some closet for three decades. No, it traveled from Peoria, to two houses in Erie, then homes in Boise, Waukesha, Erie (again) and now Akron.

So in the spirit of tieing up loose ends, I dug out a sweater that I started knitting eight years ago. It had so many tiny little mistakes in it, plus it looked like it was going to be too small for me, so when I started knitting the neck on the wrong side, I just gave up.  At the neck! Of a sweater! I shoved it in a bag and didn't think about it for eight years.

The good news is, in the intermittent years, I have become a better knitter.  I ripped out a few rows, found my spot, picked up a few dropped stitches and within the day I had finished the sweater.

Nicholas Woods

There's a lesson in here somewhere.  I suppose what I learned is that despite initial appearances, many mistakes are not as insurmountable as you first think.  When I messed up the sweater, I couldn't figure out how to fix my mistake. I thought about dragging it to a yarn store or to someone's grandma, but instead I quit.  Which was kind of par for the course in my early 20s.  I quit several jobs, colleges and relationships before I gave them a chance to bloom.  Every time I walk into Callah's bedroom her rocking chair with it's half finished strip job is a glaring reminder of my youthful enthusiasm to bite off more than I could chew and promptly spit it out.

"The time of the sweater" was a fun time in my life. I was getting to know Nick and starting out in my career. I spent many late nights at work, followed by long conversations and copious glasses of wine with my new boyfriend.  It's no wonder that the sweater started to fade in its importance.  It was something I started when I was transitioning from living with my parents after college to finding my own space in the world.

Nicholas Woods

I'm proud of this sweater, mistakes in all, and proud of myself for pulling it out of the closet, dusting it off and making the most of it.

Nicholas Woods


  1. Beautifully knitted and written. Coming back to tidy up the past is sort of soul satisfying, isn't it?
    Love, Mom


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