Things change. Even small things. Lately I have been reflecting on who I am now and whether I am the same person I was when I was in high school. (Of course I'm not the same, but I suppose the real question is whether there is anything left of that girl.) Through the wonder of social media I am in touch with so many people that I knew in high school and as I recently had a birthday, I can't help but think on the last 20 years. This sort of egotistical, self centered narcissism does not make for an interesting knitting blog post, but I have a smaller, less weighty example.
In July 2011, when I was taking part in the first Camp Loopy, as sponsored by The Loopy Ewe and that is essentially a series of three not overly taxing knitting challenges spread over 3 months, I finished that competition with an urge to make mittens. And an urge to cable.
I combined both urges (?surge) and started to knit the Sarastro mittens in Malbrigo Silky in the London Sky colourway. I used square double pointed needles and had a fairly miserable and frustrating time of it. I then put the project down and over the last 18 months have periodically looked for it, only to discover that I had no idea where it was. It was gone.
Well, in my house things are rarely truly gone but they are frequently in bags that have been packed away and such was the case with this project. Last week as I was rummaging through the upper shelves of my closet, I found the silly thing. One mitten was complete with only the thumb needing to be done and then the other mitten needed to be made. I was bored and restless and liked the idea of putting this to bed once and for all and so even though I knew the mitten was too small for me, I went ahead and finished the set.
This time I realised that much of my frustration stemmed from the fact that cabling with square needles, especially complex cables, was a bad idea. The needles didn't slide over each other and the ergonomics were lousy.
Still, I was into getting this done and somehow they seemed much quicker than I remember. I assumed that I was knitting faster these days and I assumed right. However, when I finished the second glove and laid them side by side, I realised there was something else I was doing differently these days.
Don't see it? Here's another view.
The 2011 mitten is considerably smaller than the 2013.
Same needles, same yarn, same pattern. Different gauge.
Now if anybody had asked me I would have said that I knit the exact same way as I always had. For heaven's sake I learnt when I was 4 years old. How much difference could there be?
Apparently change happens even when you don't believe it does.
I also want to add that this yarn is delicious for mittens. Soft and fluffy and incredibly warm. Highly recommended.