Monday, January 13, 2014

Lacking in Skills

As a reader of this blog, you'll know that I knit here and there. I took it up during the last year of my PhD as a way to relax. I love and adore it. I like that it takes creativity and skill, and that you get a product at the end too. It suits me perfectly as a hobby - it gets my brain going, taps into a rarely used creative side, and it's quite and solitary.

My skills are very basic at the moment. I can knit and purl and do other basic stitches based on those. I can do basic colour changes, but that's about it. When I see things like this, or receive books like this, it makes me realize I am sorely lacking in the knitting skills department.

I really want to amp things up - either learning how to make things like socks or sweaters or shawls, or learn new techniques like colour-work, cables, or lace, or being able to fix mistakes. I'd like to feel confident enough to follow a more complicated pattern.

I do hold myself back from trying new things because I don't want to fail. I know I can make decent looking things using my beginner skill set. and I enjoy it. I don't want this nice, relaxing hobby to become frustrating. On the other hand, learning new things and improving any skill is always a good thing. Also, there are really no consequences for failing, are there? The only way to learn is to just try and see how it goes. So what if I have to pull out rows of stitches, or the whole project? It wouldn't hurt anyone, that's for sure! Just my pride a bit, maybe.

For the knitters out there: any suggestions on how to learn new techniques or some intermediate patterns to try out that aren't too much a step up from beginner?