July 27, 2005
Fun versus function
Last night, I arrived home from a super-successful running class to find this:
A long-awaited copy of Denim People. yay! I've had the yarn on hand to knit Raspy for over a week now and have been waiting for this to show up. I somehow thought it would be a good idea to order the book from a Amazon Marketplace seller, which saves all of $3, and took 11 days. Now I know how Stephanie feels when waiting for things in the mail :-)
I paged through it while cooking dinner, and in a post-running haze, found this sweater very very cute. Why haven't I seen this on the blogs?
The beadwork seems like it could be great fun, and that girl sure looks good. and the patterning around the neck... so nice.
But let's be honest here - am I really going to wear this?? un-likely. I can just imagine picking it up a year from now, and saying "why?".
This is the tricky thing about choosing a pattern - finding the right blend of engaging knitting + wearability. fun versus function.
Perhaps this is why some people knit soley for others.. or why there are stories of being gifted with crazy intarsia sweaters. The knitter was thinking "oooo I want to knit this.. but I'd never wear it. Maybe my niece/nephew/grandaughter/mailman will.."
We all want to feel like our knitting hobby is worthwhile, that it produces high quality, eminently wearable garments. For me, that means stockinette one-color sweaters. Maybe a little cable action. Those kind of sweaters can get pretty repetitive.
There are a couple sweaters I've been wanting to knit, held up only with questions about their wearability. Like this cabled number from Rowan Vintage Style. and Teva Durham's Ballet sweater, guaranteed to add at least 10 pounds. But I think knitting them would be great fun. and why else do I knit if not for fun?
Back to Denim People, Raspy is the obvious choice for a sweater that I'll actually wear. It seems fun and somewhat irreverant with those dropped stitches, and it should be interesting to see this denim shrinking action. Raspy actually has a good mix of interesting knitting.
But in the future, I want to try knitting for others more often, and choosing patterns that are challenging, just for the challenge. I want to try to remove the "will I wear it?" question. Because its way exhausting. and I've already got running for that.