Time to learn a new skill!

Why? Because one is never too old to learn something new. And because knitting needs to lose this air of mysticism… and I need to lose this sense of total intimidation when it comes to anything to do with it.

Sure, I can knit scarves.

I can even knit dragon tails.

I can do a basic braid pattern, and the brioche stitch.

I am sufficient enough with my increases and decreases and even stitches that I can do scarf-like things that I thought would look really cool, but then… actually didn’t.

Joker Scarf

And then once I knitted a baby jacket.

End of repertoire. 

Really. Beanies? No clue. Socks? Hell naw. Lace-anything? OMG I can’t even. Norwegian patterns? LOL!

Crocheting, for me, is so much easier, and so much more intuitive. I truly understand it, understand what I am doing, I understand what each stitch does. I can fix mistakes (- if I even make them in the first place), and reading a crochet pattern is like reading normal writing to me. Yet, for all my love of all things crochet, I feel like it is very nice and fun and yields amazing results, but elaborate knitting really is the pinnacle of the wooly crafts.

But oh! So intimidating. As I said in my introductory post, I grew up to the steady rhythm of my mother’s ever-clacking needles, and oh, that woman knows how to knit. Everything and anything. I am not sure why I never picked it up from her… maybe because it was her thing all my life, and the least thing we want to do when we are kids are the things our parents do, right?

(That’s probably also why I can’t/don’t like to cook, eh.)

So crocheting eventually became my thing. She knits – i crochet. We’re both subject matter experts in our own area of expertise and don’t cross over much.

And her area of expertise? It’s scary, man. I mean… WHAT IF I DROP A STITCH??? The whole thing needs to be frogged, because HOW DO I PICK UP STITCHES??? I have no idea. Many a project of old ended up with holes from such dropped stitches that I never managed to pick up, that became bigger and bigger over time until I threw the darned things away.

I don’t really understand knitting. I have my mother explain patterns and stitches to me (- because I can’t read knitting patterns), follow along while hoping for the best, but when I drop a stitch, or make some other kind of mistake, I usually need to put the whole project aside and wait for my mother to show up the next time and fix it for me. It’s a tedious process, and it frustrates me easily.

Yet I so desperately want to knit a lace shawl for myself! They are so gorgeous, and a knitted scarf definitely has a finer feel to it than on that was crocheted. But lace? No way.

Katia Air LuxOr so I thought. I came across the Pretty Basic pattern by Janina Kallio, which is labelled “easy” and really only incorporates stitches I already know how to do. I downloaded the free PDF, found an English-German-Knitting-Dictionary, watched a bunch of YouTube videos on lace knitting basics, grabbed my Katia Air Lux yarn (- finally!) and got stared last night after midnight.

Well, let me rephrase that: I cast on the required 5 stitches. That was after I sat through Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation, I might add, so excuse me while my brain leaked out of my ears in exasperation, unable to process the process of lace. Needless to say: I frogged it all after 2 attempts at 2 rows and went to bed. Fast forward to today: my mother actually was here for a visit, so she supervised my casting-on and explained some stuff here and there, and off I was, knitting lace!!!! Flying through it, in fact! Me! For the first time in my life, and it wasn’t even all that hard… and look Mommy, no hands!!!

*sound of screeching brakes*

First fatal mistake 6 tiny rows in. What the hell… not even fixable by Mom. *ribbit*

Seriously? How hard can this be? 4th attempt. And, what can I say… I am about 20 rows in, and it’s awesome! I still don’t truly understand what I am doing, but the pattern seems to be simple enough for the likes of me, and the Katia Air Lux actually feels a lot better knitted than it did when I tried to crochet with it. No mistakes so far. And thus, without further ado: I present to you my first ever 20 rows of lace knitting… BEHOLD!!!

The project “Pretty Basic” can also be found on Ravelry.

The project “Chaqueta de Bebé” can also be found on Ravelry.

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4 thoughts on “Time to learn a new skill!

  1. I’ve just started knitting lace too (and my first pair of socks which is actually easier than the lace!) And I’ve found that rather than ripping out the whole shawl when I drop a stitch, I turn the piece around and knit backwards up to the drop – mind, I catch the stitch with a paper clip first and then it’s just a matter of patience and counting every other row. Please feel free to join the Thursday sock knit along if you ever want to try socks! And don’t worry, we are both new to socks there so there are plenty of mistakes to discuss/laugh about 🙂

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    1. Thank you for your comment and your pointer about the dropped stitches. 🙂 As it is, I am happy if I ever finish the lace shawl, socks aren’t quite on my radar yet. Mostly, because I actually don’t like wearing knitted socks at all myself. Maybe one day I’ll gift my kids with some, though – we’ll see. 🙂

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