Hi, again. It’s been a month (I know!) since my last post, which is weird for me. I don’t think I’ve gone a month between posts since I started this blog a million years ago. OK, so it’s been slightly fewer than 6 years, but the point still stands.
So what happened to me? I dunno exactly, but I couldn’t seem to move forward. No matter how much I berated myself and gave myself rah-rah pep talks, I just could not seem to find my groove.
In short, I was stuck.
It happened something like this: I finished knitting the pink ruffled baby cardi by the end of 2012, but needed buttons. And none of the buttons I found would do. They were too big, not big enough, too pink, not pink enough, too boring, etc., etc. I went out a couple of times to a couple of retail places, scouting their pathetic wares. I was growing so ticked at the button makers, distributors and sellers of the world, because I couldn’t find anything really right.
Finally, at Michael’s (yes, Michael’s) I found a set of sparkly jewel-tones buttons, shaped like little flowers, that I thought just might work. That was 3 weeks or so ago.
Did I sew the buttons on then? No. No, I did not.
You see, I’d decided to stitch a strip of ribbon along the back of the button band, to reinforce it and to support and keep the buttons from pulling it out of shape when the sweater was worn. I had just the perfect ribbon, too! Remember the ribbon I bought for the drawstring on the pink eyelet chemise? I have yards of it left over and it would be just right for this purpose, too. And I needed to hand-sew that strip (about 7 inches long, total) to the back of the buttonband first.
Did I sew the ribbon on when I finally had buttons that pleased me?
No. No, I did not.
I dunno why not, but for some reason, I was loathe to tackle this most basic of tasks. I mean, we’re not talking rocket science here, folks. It was just… beyond me. (This makes even less sense when you consider that I’d been carrying the sweater and the ribbon around with me everywhere. Every.where.)
Finally, this past Monday, I sat down with the buttons and the ribbon (and, yes, the sweater) and I sewed the strip of ribbon in place. It took less than an hour to do it right, which did mean restitching the first 3 inches to correct some wonkiness in the ribbon-to-buttonband tension, but still. Less than an hour. (sigh)
I grabbed the buttons and was all set to sew them on when I discovered… they are craft buttons. Yep, craft buttons: meant for scrapbooking. Not garment buttons. These lovely craft buttons had no shanks, no holes at all to allow for a true button functionality.
I had to work Monday and Tuesday nights, so my first chance to look for suitable buttons that actually are buttons? Wednesday morning. (Yes, this past Wednesday.)
At my first stop: nothing.
My second stop was Joanne’s, where I found the best ones so far. In fact, I was going to buy and use them, but there were only 4 on a card… and the pattern calls for 5.* The very kind saleslady went in the back storeroom and searched their most recent shipments, but there were no more of these particular buttons to be found.
I left the store in an overtired funk.
My options had narrowed to two: a branch of the Evil Empire I’d not been to yet, or my LYS.
And my LYS wasn’t open yet, so Wally World prevailed by default. (Bear in mind that this was the 3rd of that franchise I’d been to in my small city, and I wasn’t feeling very optimistic. After all, the other two had had nothing.)
To my relief and surprise, I found something usable. Not perfect, but usable.
So, I settled.
The reason? I’d come to the conclusion that I would not be able to start another knitting project – ever – while this damned cardi was unfinished. It had become my albatross (no, I don’t really know much about albatross lore, but I know it’s not a good thing… unless I’m wrong, in which case the unfinished sweater was my… um… tar baby and I was the… um… Ahem. Let’s just go with “albatross,” shall we? Thanks. I mean it.)
With buttons in hand (finally), I could move on.
And last night, I did it.
Not perfect, but done.
I’m not really crazy about it. The mom wanted a hot pink and white color scheme, which is fine, but there’s something about the collar shape that I don’t like at all. I wish I’d taken the time to do the math and figure out how to do a ruffle treatment there, as I don’t think the pointy style (as above) is right for this sweater, but I didn’t.
And that may be the reason I was stuck.
I didn’t want to finish a sweater that I wasn’t thrilled with.
Ah, well, it’s not for me to wear and, frankly, the baby for whom I made it may have already outgrown it by the time her mom tries to put it on her. She turned into quite the adorable chubby little thing, as I will show you when/if her mom takes pictures of her wearing the cardi.
Oh, and look what happened shortly after sunrise this morning:
For layering under that cardi.
I think a little ribby tank top will be a good addition. If the cardi is too small to button comfortably, the baby can wear this soon-to-be pink tank top that will match perfectly and have a bit more flexibility. I think the cardi will be more flattering, softer-looking, when it hangs open, and the tank will be usable into the summer.
I anticipate finishing the tank in the next couple of days, as it’s small and fast to knit.
And our Florida weather has been fickle, with nights getting down into the 40s… and possibly 30s this weekend… so I need to get it done before it’s too darned hot to subject a baby to its, um, charms.
OK, off to bed with me. Work tonight… and Saturday and Sunday… (sigh)
Have a wonderful Friday, kittens!
And for the record,** it’s great to be unstuck. Absolutely great!
* For reasons that refuse to present themselves, I had it in my mind that the pattern required 6 buttons, so I was frantically looking for six-of-a-kind, perfect buttons. In fact, I didn’t realize only 5 were needed until I was sewing them on this morning. (sigh)
** Speaking of records, this is my 500th blog post.*** Weird!
*** I’ve also written 431 “pages” (i.e., FOs, Books Read, etc.) on this site. Also weird!
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