My mum always used to say: “patience is a virtue”. She said this because she, as a very impatient person like myself, understood the value of patience. I am the kind of person who goes about life as if there is never enough time: I am always running to the the next thing which is I think the basis for my impatience. There is no time for slowness or inefficiency, from trying to open a package that seems like it was made to never be opened or to pair my boyfriends socks which are all black except for this tiny little embroidery in different colours (I keep trying to convince him no one will notice if they are different).
So it is no wonder that until recently I was also impatient with my crochet projects. I wouldn’t swatch before a garment, or I would use a DK yarn even when I knew the pattern would work a lot better with a 4ply so that I could get started sooner, I would not block my finished project because I couldn’t wait to start the next one and I would not do a proper swatch for my designs but just go straight for the sample instead (I still do this actually…). And most important of all the rules for the impatient crocheter: you don’t rip out, you just pretend like the mistake isn’t there. Because who has time to work all that section again, right?
If you are reading this and nodding (don’t pretend like your weren’t now!), then let me give you a small advice. It will probably sound ridiculous but hang with me for a moment. Here it goes:
If you actually take the time, if you are patient with your projects, you will enjoy them more.
I know, it sounds crazy right? But people, it is true. Not easy, but definitely true.
I am still an impatient crocheter in recovery but I can honestly say that ever since I started taking more time planning my projects, choosing my yarn, making proper swatches, weaving in ends properly, working proper seams and everything else that a patient person would do, I have actually enjoyed my craft a lot more. I not only feel better because the finished product looks and fits better, but I also feel very proud of myself for taking the time to re-do that bit that wasn’t looking very well, or to start again with a different hook size to get a nicer drape. This realisation has helped grow this idea of mine to create a handmade wardrobe that I will want to wear, and time is definitely key in that process. Time and of course, patience. Patience to understand that it is time well spent.
As the weekend flew by I didn’t have much time to work on my Freyja but I was determined to finish that Row 1 before this next post. Why? Who knows, no one is timing me and I am sure you won’t mind if I take a bit longer. When I had a few hours to spare on Sunday I started working on it and had made some good progress until I realised I made a mistake right after I picked it up that day. I could either get to the end of the row and try to make it work somehow, or rip all I had done in those precious hours. I am proud to say I didn’t think (that long) before deciding to just undo my work and start again.
It is not always easy and I still don’t follow my own advice every now and again. And of course patience has its limits and I won’t start a whole sweater again if I made the mistake right at the beginning (which just happened with my Alyssium cardi by the way). But here I am, with no progress with my Freyja compared to last week and feeling quite good about it. The world hasn’t ended, that mistake is not there to annoy me anymore and that shawl is still going to get finished, just maybe a few days later than planned. For someone so used to running about, I am really enjoying to take things slow for a while.