Monday, January 23, 2012

The Gift of Shame

Ever have one of those crafts that, as you saw the pattern, you were immediately inspired to make it for someone because it's perfect for him? And in your excitement, you tell said friend in front of other related friends about your plans to make the craft as a Christmas gift. Then once you begin the project, you run into some snags. Ravelry commenters say the pattern has some sizing flaws, your yarn size isn't perfectly matched, and your knitting gauge has always been fairly wonky compared to standard instructions.

But it's ok, right? You can do this. Crocheter for 3 years, knitter for 2, and comfortable with a certain degree of improvisation. So you measure your wonky gauge using the wrong sized yarn and compensate the best you can. But by the time you are 80% done with making the seemingly awesome Space Invaders hat, you realize that it looks more like a head accessory for a Conehead than a human. You've gone too far to undo the whole thing (or rather, are unwilling to give up all that work), so in a last ditch effort, you attempt to decrease the diameter of the hat in half the number of rows, creating some kind of wrinkly, stumpy crown. Great.

K says it looks fine, but I know better. I have a really high standard for myself, and it just looks so... homemade! I want it to appear store-bought, meticulously manufactured... flat out spectacular. But I guess I shouldn't be so hard on myself because that's the charm of getting something made by hand. It does have mistakes and character and, well, heartfelt love and affection behind it. So yeah, it's not my best work (I still struggle with stranding), but it's functional, well-meaning and, best of all, geeky. :)

Have you ever been so embarrassed of a finished project that you didn't want to give it to the intended receiver? Did you end up giving it anyway?


Dr. Moxie Awesome said...

This has happened to me once or twice....every time I get it into my head to crochet somebody something.

I think your hat looks fine and very awesome but I understand that we are our own worst critics.

For what's it worth; you are far too hard on yourself. Great work!

A Gamer's Wife said...

Awww! That is so sweet! Thanks so much for the encouragement. When I gave it to my friend, he ended up wearing it the whole evening, so hopefully that means he liked it. :)