21 January 2011

Winter uses all the blues there are

Here's a thing I don't often see knit bloggers (or other craft bloggers, for that matter) do very often: revisit completed projects and talk about how we feel about them after living with them a while. Obviously, it's more fun to talk about the new things we make, the yarn we just bought, the sweaters we've just cast on, the socks we've finished. We post pretty pictures on our blogs and the project disappears from view.

I often find myself wondering 'and then what happened?' especially when reading about the projects of prolific crafters. Does she wear all those cardigans? That lacy tank top? Or do they go into a drawer somewhere? Did the yarn turn out to be too scratchy? Did it pill?

What about all those gorgeous lace shawls? Does anyone wear them? When? Where? That's one of the reasons I don't knit lots of lace shawls, though I love knitting lace and find shawls beautiful; I don't want to make something that's just going to lie in a drawer waiting for an 'occasion,' and the number of occasions I have to wear a lace shawl are limited. I'd be interested to learn what happens to the shawls other people knit.

In that spirit, then, let me revisit a project I knit -- and blogged -- about a year ago. It's a scarf I started after Christmas in 2009 and finished during the February 2010 snowstorms. I did not get a great picture when I first finished it because we were experiencing white-out conditions and taking it outside to photograph was not really an option. This picture was taken after the snow last week.

Mashed Blueberries, redux

At the time I finished the scarf I felt a little more ambivalent about it than I may have let on. It was a finished thing. It was blue. I wasn't sure I loved it -- I mean, it was fine, it wasn't as though I'd made a gigantic error in it, or something like that, and I like blue, but I wasn't sure I'd really lost my heart to it, either. I thought briefly about giving it away.

It has turned out to be the scarf I wear most. Its particular shades of blue go really well with my government-issue fleece jacket. It is exactly the right length (54 inches) to wrap around my neck and tuck the ends in at the collar of that jacket (and other coats). The yarn is smooth and soft and is wearing well -- no pilling, fuzzing, or fading.

The fat-in-the-middle-with-pointy-ends shape is just about perfect. My neck is well protected from the cold, but I don't have a lot of excess bulk when I tuck in the ends. I also like that it's not triangular; I don't look like I'm acting out some kind of bandanna-wearing cowgirl fantasy when I wear it. (Not that there's anything wrong with bandanna-wearing cowgirl fantasies, as such, but it's not a look I choose to cultivate for myself).

So that's how one project looks to me after living with it a year. I can't promise I'll revisit all my projects this way, but I'll try to do it from time to time.

Robert Francis

1 comment:

  1. That's a lovely scarf, Nora. I'm crocheting tons of infinity scarves now & finding myself wearing one just about every day.

    I often like to revisit gifts in the way you've done here--to write to someone who gave me a useful or beloved (or both) gift years ago & tell them how much I still love it.


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