I know, I know, it's a very dramatic blog post title. FAILURES! But also, new beginnings. I think I'm incapable of ever being too negative. In fact, in most incidents of failure I manage to see a bright side within 36 hours. Not too shabby.
The past few days have been rough. I won't go into it. (And don't worry, no one's sick, dying, bankrupt, or going to jail.) It's just been a series of small disappointments that, when considered cumulatively, result in an involuntary need to sigh. Let's use the blue hat as a metaphor. This hat shown above...it was supposed to be a beret. It's kind of crazy to work on a hat for half a year imagining that you are making a beret only to discover that you have actually been knitting a beanie. The thing is, it's still quite a handsome hat, but I'll always look at it and wonder how I could have been knitting at the wrong gauge for so long and only realized it at the very end.
Like most things that don't wind up working out in my life, I make a pom-pom (metaphorically in most cases, but in this hat literally) and sew it to the top. Why not make our failures whimsical? If we can't laugh at it, then I don't know why we're doing it.
Another thing I know about myself: when something doesn't work out, I throw a good old-fashioned tantrum, and then I almost immediately get back on the horse and try again. I finished the blue beanie on Sunday, and then last night I started winding a skein of Classic Elite Fresco. Soft and forgiving, it felt like an old friend as I draped it over my knees and fed it through the ball binder. I opened up More Last-Minute Knitted Gifts and turned to the knitted beret presented there, which Joelle tells us will take 6-8 hours to make. It is blissfully done in rounds and rounds of mindless stockinette stitch, so I can have time to ruminate life's disappointments, dream about tenacity, or watch competitive cooking shows on TV. Or all three. I always forget that knitting is therapeutic that way.
Especially when you're working with something as fuzzy as wool, alpaca, and angora.
I also went to the Sheep and Wool festival in Rhinebeck on Sunday! It was a long day, but SO great to stand alongside our authors, Kristy McGowan, Joelle Hoverson, and Bruce Weinstein, and chat with customers about our books. Kristy, the author of Modern Top-Down Knitting, was especially fun to watch--as a first-time author, you could see the wonder on her face as people stood before her and gushed over her designs. And really, wouldn't it be an amazing thing to see your creation leap out of your living room and into the hands of thousands of people? You can hardly find it surprising to see so much light in her eyes.
Though a day of yarn and border collies herding sheep and ducks should have been enough, my favorite part was the train. Amtrak runs along the Hudson river, and on a cool, bright day, I was lucky enough to be on it first thing in the morning and as the sun was going down. So I leave you with some snaps because I, for one, love blurry shots from moving vehicles. Hope you do too.