When Did That Get Easy?

Since I finished off two pair of socks last week, it was time to cast on a new pair. I know, try to contain your shock…

Presented with the perennial problem of which yarn to knit with, I turned once again to my uber-geek method used here. Download the Ravelry stash as an Excel file, eliminate all the yarn not for socks, and then slap the list into the Random List Generator.

Right then, Lana Grossa Meilenweit Tweed, come on down! Also, since the Birthday Socks were so plain, I picked out a more complicated pattern, Fan Lace from Charlotte Schurch.

Cast on 60 stitches, divide onto four needles, join without twisting, work K1, P1 for 1.5 inches.

That’s when I noticed something. It was easy.

I remember being scared of socks. With all those needles, it seemed like I needed skills in Advanced Porcupine Wrangling. And the teeny tiny yarn, so much thinner than anything I’d worked with. I must have twisted the join on the first pair five times. Then there was the time I finished up a needle, turned the work and pulled out… the wrong needle. I had two empty ones in my right hand, and there were all those stitches just hanging there. Trauma, panic and lost stitches ensued.

I am nothing if not stubborn… contrary… bullheaded… I persevered, and my socks have gotten better. Oh sure, sometimes I end up making them for other people when I thought I was making them for me, but these are things I’m sure have happened to other knitters… right?

But, and this is the thing which surprised me on Saturday, at some point they got easy. Casting on, dividing, joining (without twisting!), those first few fiddly rounds… maybe they’re a bit of a challenge, but they don’t seem hard any more.

My ribbing looks good, I don’t see any ladders between needles, and the lace pattern is coming out well.

BlackLaceFan-02

Even better if I stretch it a little.

BlackLaceFan-02

I suppose it’s true… practice really does make perfect.

So tell me, have you had those kinds of moments in your knitting? in the rest of your life? Where something that used to be difficult just happens?

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9 Responses to When Did That Get Easy?

  1. Nora says:

    Totally, and my best examples are those of sock and lace knitting, both of which I learned less than a year ago, and both of which seem pretty easy now. Well, lace, within reason – but I can knit a lace shawl in a triangular pattern using laceweight yarn. I wouldn’t have dreamed of it 12 months ago. Cool!

  2. Lieke says:

    I’ve had that with stranded knitting. At first, it looked awfull (the first stranded sweater is still half done, think I’m gonna frog it, cause the knitting just looks ugly, not even and weird). And suddenly, after half a sweater, when I started a cardigan, my colorknitting seemed to have improved. It looks much better now, the cardigan is something I will wear.

  3. Karen says:

    Definitely — and I love those lace socks! Which of Charlene’s books is the pattern from? (I have the 2nd…)I SO hear you about the “pull out the wrong needle….OHMYGODALLTHESTITCHESARELOOSE!!!Not a pleasant feeling. But we cope, and grow stronger, no?

  4. Rose Red says:

    Oh yes, all the time! My first pair of socks using fingering weight sock yarn took FOREVER! Now, I can whiz through them (sort of). But I still have the ladders problem. Sigh.

  5. Bells says:

    Wow, you really are a geek aren’t you? And I mean that with the utmost respect and affection! Yes, lace. I remember my first really plain lace with just a few YOs and K2TOGs and it just freaked me out. It was painstaking. Now, well I’m a little more confident and each new lace piece makes me remember back and see how far I’ve come.

  6. Donna Lee says:

    I went into knitting socks having no idea what I was doing and how hard they would be. They were the first things I knitted (besides a square baby blanket)so i was in complete denial. As I complete another pair, I am still in awe of how wonderful they are and I made them! I’ve given away as many pairs as I’ve made and in doing so, have made many handknit sock fans that now all want more. My knitting future could be secure if only I’d charge for them.

  7. Crafty Coug says:

    I think it is the story of my knitting! It all feels easy, but I will do little things – like right now I’m knitting socks and I knit the first one on a size too small needle, so had to start over. If I tell my dad what I’m knitting his followup question is, “How many times have you already used that yarn?” Meaning, “how many times did you start that project before you decided it was right?” I wish I could say it only happens like that occasionally and when he’s been around, but I’ve been keeping track and it’s pretty much every project… he he he.

  8. TinkingBell says:

    Weird isn’t it. And ity makes you feel so clever too (not in an arrogant way, but a sort so surprised – goodness – did I do that? sort of way. Like lace. and turning a heel.Love it(great socks!)

  9. Joanne says:

    Oh, this completely happens to me, and I love it! That moment when suddenly you realize–not only was this not hard for me, not a fight but just stimulating and enjoyable. I am, like you, persistent. I push myself through things until suddenly it makes sense. This moment (whether it’s in knitting, writing, reading, cooking, or gardening..) is always so delicious. I had several of these A-Ha! It’s easy! moments while doing projects for my books. I can’t wait to blog about it. In the meanwhile, thanks for all your reassuring notes on my blog. It makes me feel a lot less like a 3 headed alien in an ice cream shop!

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