Thursday, 18 August 2016

Give up?

I have just done something which I thought I would never, ever, do.   I have abandoned a project I started.   I have always in the past insisted on finishing anything I began even if it had become a chore.

My eldest grand-daughter is pregnant with her first child and I thought I would do some knitting for her (I discussed patterns and colours with her when she came to see me last).

I finished the first hooded jacket last week and was really rather pleased with it - the design, the pattern and the measurements were all correct.   At the beginning of this week (although I am still not feeling one hundred percent and should have known better) I began to sew the pieces together.
'Join the raglan seams' it said.   It was only after I had done this - neatly and carefully, making sure no stitches were showing - that I realised I had joined front and back raglan seams, but left out the sleeves.

I have now taken ten hours unpicking those seams.   My hands are very shaky and my eyesight is not that brilliant (I sewed the garment with the same wool I had knitted it with) and finally this morning I have given up the fight.  I have only managed to unpick half a seam.

I shall start again with the next lot of wool I bought and put the whole project down to experience.   My motto of 'if at first you don't succeed, try, try,try again' for once has been consigned to the bin


Have you ever abandoned a project, or do you always finish things?   I do hope that at least one of you can offer the comfort of saying 'yes, I have done something similar' - it would be a bit of a comfort.



32 comments:

Derek Faulkner said...

I don't know about abandoning a project Pat, my big problem is actually starting them.I can come up with all kinds of projects while sitting in the conservatory with a glass of wine but few get to the starting line.

Tom Stephenson said...

I have unfinished projects sitting in my workshop which go back 20 years, Weave. I have to force myself to complete a project.

Dawn McHugh said...

what a shame do you not know some-one who could unpick it for you, I would if I lived near by

Gwil W said...

Hi Pat, I was also spoon fed Robert the Bruce and the spider with my cornflakes but fortunately I have debunked that myth to my own satisfaction. I only have one project and that is to live to be 100 and like Falujah Singh and others to keep on running until I get there.

Rachel said...

I dont do projects. I just live from day to day.

There is a wool shop I pass everyday that has a notice in the window saying 'you knit and we will put together'. Now I understand why.

Yorkshire Pudding said...

I am sorry to say that there are several "projects" I haven't finished such as a novel - even though I typed 60,000 words of it in 2012. Then there's the crazy paved path leading to our kitchen door. I need to re-set the stones and fill the gaps with weatherproof mortar. There are several other unfinished things I could beat myself up about.

Penny said...

I too have one or two unfinished things sitting looking at me, one day they may get done.

Heather said...

I, like you, always intend to finish a project but it doesn't always happen. After all that lovely knitting, isn't there someone who would do the unpicking and stitch the little garment together for you? Such a shame to waste all your effort.

Cro Magnon said...

I have abandoned more paintings than I care to imagine.

Joanne Noragon said...

Yes! And knitting projects, too. And raglan sweaters, for the same reason. Next go will be perfect.

jinxxxygirl said...

Oh my goodness Pat i'm sure i have.... I have even more that SHOULD be abandoned.... I've had them 'in progress' so long i'm sure they FEEL abandoned....lol we're talking years.....I like to experiment and try new things and sometimes it just doesn't work out and there have been a few of those i've walked away from....One of the first pieces of ceramic i poured was a cowboy and indian chess set... highly detailed.... That was gosh 10 years ago... still languishing in a box waiting to be painted... i've come close so many times to just giving up and getting rid of it but no i lugged it to CA when we moved and then to AR when we moved.... and i still swear i'm going to paint it one day...lol Hugs! deb

Simon Douglas Thompson said...

Could you sue it as a bag or some such thing, trying to envisage what it looks like

Mac n' Janet said...

More than once, I know when to give up and give in. It doesn't do any good to fight it. Better to just start over.

donna baker said...

Well, I have still not moved in the new city house and it has been 10 months. I haul up things in my truck each time I come, but it seems to be never-ending. Oh, and I have a scarf I haven't finished knitting.

Sue said...

How frustrating for you Pat. I like to finish a project if I start one but sometimes it can just take a long time. I started Millenium tapestry in 1997 and finally completed it in about 2005!

Wilma said...

Sometimes one's efforts are better spent on something else, sort of like not throwing good money after bad. The trick is to tell the difference between a project not worth the continued effort and a project that you are just too lazy to complete. "Lazy" is not a word I associate with you, Pat, so I think you are safe to direct your efforts toward a more profitable and enjoyable task. And, as I read your words, you aren't even abandoning a project, you just had a false start and are starting over with new materials. Having a big streak of lazy myself, I have to be cautious not to quit a project prematurely. Sometimes, after a break, I can come back to things fresh and finish up. Other times, I realize the best course is to walk away from something that is a drain on my time, materials, and good nature!

Frances said...

Weaver, I wish that I lived near you so that I could help you un-do the raglan seaming. When I was a teenager, I had a summer job working in a yarn shop, and helped "reverse" customers' knitting that had gone off the track. Then the customers could have a chance to begin anew without the annoying, tedious task. (When I have to undo a knitting bit, I don't welcome the task. It was easier to help someone else.)

What you wrote about the changes to the view from your window was so interesting. I would like the idea of seeing the seasons change that way. The seasonal "marker" I view from my own bedroom is a gingko tree, whose green leaves have now become edged with crispy brown. Pretty soon, the leaves will begin to fall. When I moved to this apartment, I could look down on the top of the tree. Now, decades later, its top branches stretch way past my window. xo

Reader Wil said...

Hi Pat! Some 30 years ago i began driving lessons but discovered that I had to follow strict rules and was not allowed to use my fantasy. Well that was what I didn't like so I stopped and I was not sorry, neither were my neighbours, forthen our road was a lot safer. So you see. sometimes it is wise to stop a project.

Librarian said...

Like someone else on here commented, my problem is rarely not finishing a project - it is starting! I admire anyone who does creative and craft work with their own hands, be it sewing, knitting, cross-stitching or even baking and cooking. Most of the time I lack patience and can't be bothered, which is rather sad - and therefore, I don't even start anything like that, knowing it would only leave me frustrated.
Other projects such as clearing out the basement eventually will become reality; the question is only "when" :-)

The Weaver of Grass said...

I cannot tell you all what comfort I have got from reading all your replies. My chiropodist came this afternoon to attend to our feet and she managed to unpick quite a stretch of the seam before she went - she has better eyesight and her hands don't shake.
I might indeed call in at the wool shop and see what they say - I never thought of that.

annie said...

Last year i decided to rid my house of unfinished projects ,the main one being a beautiful sweater half finished .I realized even if i finished it ,it would never fit me ,it was started in 1985.I took it to a local wool shop they happily took it ,and finished it .That same day i took all brass and silver to a buyer , as i do not want to clean it ,nothing irritates me more than looking at it dirty,so problem solved ,job done .

Terry and Linda said...

I have abandoned projects. I sure hope you get to feeling better soon!

Linda

JoAnn ( Scene Through My Eyes) said...

I prefer to finish my projects - can't think off-hand of one I've abandoned - probably will think of it after I'm done with this comment. I'd pick the seams for you - if only I wasn't across the world from you.

KitKatCot said...

My mother used to knit my cardigans, or so I thought. I was sent to my Auntie Peggy's with 'a bit of knitting to sort'.

I later found out that my mother would do the back up to the decrease for armholes, front left up to the armholes, front right up to the armholes then Auntie Peggy would knit the rest.

To my mothers surprise, I turned out to be a quite a dab hand at knitting.

Hildred said...

While I was still at home I started a sweater for my Dad. Charles came home from Overseas, we got married, had babies, built a house, started farming. Eventually I gave the sweater to my father as a vest - never did get the sleeves done, but I did get it sewn together and the armholes finished satisfactorily. I try to discipline myself to finish things but every once in a while when cleaning I come across half a white sweater stuffed in a bag, forlornly. Time is running out on me....

Countryside Tales said...

I think it's a positive thing to stop a project that really isn't working. I don't often give up on things either but there's nothing helpful about hitting your head against a brick wall. If you can get help with the unpicking that sounds like the best solution x

potty said...

My Mum started an emboidered tablecloth before she was married in 1939, she almost finished a corner and it was put away. When we moved to France in 2005 the tablecloth was taken to a Charity shop ( with loads of other stuff) as she had passed and I would never have finished it either.

Polly said...

I agree with Countryside Tales. I have enjoyed and finished many projects over the years, DIY, knitting, sewing, dressmaking. My dolls house is ongoing, but some did get abandoned, like the pretty pink ballet cardigan for my youngest daughter (now grown up)(she lost interest after a while so I didn't feel too bad). But the one that I'm cross with myself for never starting is quilting. I've got material and books but just never got round to it.

thelma said...

My projects never look like I planned them to be, but mostly they get finished. The dog is walking around with a sock that became too big for instance. I.m glad the chiropodist unpicked it, if I lived nearer would have done it, sewing up knitted garments is a nightmare!

Andie said...

I wonder if, like myself, you back stitch when you sew up something. It is a devil to undo as the stitches look like the knitted article and if you cut the wrong one it is a disaster. Put it down to experience; my problem is that I enjoy knitting toys and can follow the pattern but the devil is in the detail. I carefully sew it up but when I embroider the cute looking face it ends up looking like a voodoo doll. Not for me Alan Dart's sweet mouth or cute ears, oh no, when my youngest daughter got married I secretly bought the aforesaid gentleman's great looking pattern and started to knit a bride and bridegroom doll for the cake. They ended up looking like Worzel Gummidge and Aunt Sally, only worse. My grand daughter played with them on the day, and everyone saw them and said " Oh, what have you there" there was a lot of laughter, not quite what I had in mind. So, to answer your question, YES, there are a lot of unfinished articles in my bag and there are some that should have stayed there. Love Andie xxx

The Weaver of Grass said...

More comfort comments - thank you. And this morning at our coffede meeting friend C says she will have a go at unpicking it if I give it to her on Sunday when we go out to lunch - so maybe all is not lost after all.

thousandflower said...

I usually try and finish things but I also try not to be silly about it. So once in a while I admit defeat and abandon the project with a clear conscience.