When it comes to knit & crochet, I can found, mostly, at the shallow end of the pool. You know, where the basic scarves, baby blankets, & even simple socks are swimming. Oh, I've dogpaddled out to the deeper end once or twice. I made a pair of "patterned" socks (Elongated Corded Rib from Sensational Knitted Socks) and a lace scarf, and I really enjoyed making them both. But, when done, I paddled right back to the shallow end with a bit of relief. When looking at other people's projects I'm likely to say, "Oh, I'm not at that level yet." What? Like I'm going to wake up one morning with the ability to do Fair Isle implanted in my brain? I am a hands-on learner; I know this about myself. Why am I waiting for some sort of notification: You may now proceed to Level 2?
This came clear to me the other day while talking about my upcoming vacation, a cruise. I was telling a friend about the activities I wanted to try. I like to do new things on vacation; things that I would not normally do. In St. Martin's, despite a fear of drowning, I took a hotel training course and went scuba diving. In England, I tried my hand at steering the long boat I was staying on. I was at the rudder when we went through the narrowest, twisty-est section of canal on our route, with boats moored on both sides. With sweaty palms, I got through without hitting anyone. Now, despite a fear of heights, I am planning on trying parasailing. So why do I save this "devil may care" attitude for vacations only? Why, if I am willing to hang by a scrap of fabric and lengths of rope, am I unwilling to challenge myself in my crafting? So I have to frog a piece; what am I afraid of?
A year ago, I bought the yarn and pattern for a sweater. One of Elsebeth Lavold's designs, Aud. It isn't a scary sweater, but OMG, I will have to learn seaming. I began and stopped the doctor's bag from Knit2Together because it needs a lining and I've never done that before. NO MORE FEAR! I have restarted the doctor's bag. I have chosen my cruise knitting: a lace project kit from Just Our Yarn for the Maple Tree Shawl by Karen Joan Raz. And I will start that sweater this year. I can do this. I may make mistakes, but that is how you learn and move to the next level. Or the deep end of the pool.