Saturday, 28 April 2012

3KCBWDAY6: Improving Your Skillset

Crystal Vision Tarot

Improving Your Skillset

How far down the road to learning your craft do you believe yourself to be ? Are you comfortable with what you know or are you always striving to learn new skills and add to your knowledge base ? Take a look at a few knitting or crochet books and have a look at some of the skills mentioned in the patterns. Can you start your amigurumi pieces with a magic circle, have you ever tried double knitting, how's your intarsia ? If you are feeling brave, make a list of some of the skills you have not yet tried but would like to have a go at, and perhaps even set yourself a deadline of when you'd like to have tried them by.

I had a quick look at last year's KCBW post about this topic, to see if I'd set myself any targets. I've actually achieved  two of them, I was surprised to discover: I've learned to read lace charts, and I've made a lace shawl (actually, 9 shawls). The Starflower Estonian Lace Baby Blanket remains unknitted, as does anything from the 'Victorian Lace Today' book.

Instead, the unanticipated new thing I tried was intarsia:

And I shan't be bothering again, as for me, the results do not justify the hassles.

For next year, I have decided I have no goals or targets as far as learning new skills goes: knitting is a pastime I use for enjoyment and relaxation, and as such, is not the place for targets and goals of improvement, even if self-imposed. I don't enjoy the words 'must', 'should' and 'ought' in my hobbies.

If I want to make something, and it involves learning a new skill or two, then I will learn the new skill; but I shall not be trying to learn something just for learning's sake. Yes, not my usual attitude to learning, and I am feeling somewhat mardy, how did you guess ?

There are far more sunny posts to be found by Googling 3KCBWDAY6 ....


  1. Hey, that's fair! It is *your* hobby, after all.

    P.S. - There's something weird happening in Blogger - one of your comments this week went to my spam folder, and I have no idea why. I've rectified the situation, but there were two different comments in there. I never look in my spam folder, so I have no idea what gremlin this is. But it's published now, so if you didn't see a previous comment, that's the reason why.

  2. I wholeheartedly agree with your outlook. By my standards you are a very accomplished expert knitter, and I greatly admire your skills. I think more important than simply learning new techniques just to know them, is that we not be afraid of trying new techniques when they will be useful to us.

  3. I made a Thunderbirds jumper for my son when he was about four years old. I found the intarsia bit such a faff I undid the damn thing, re-knit it and embroidered the picture instead :/ I work with some techniques better than others, and intarsia's not one of the better ones lol!

  4. Totally with you on the intarsia and I think you should craft only on your own terms. Also, thanks for the new word (though I don't think I can get away with using it around here without earning a lot of blank stares) and thanks for inspiring me to do KCBW this year; I enjoyed it!


Thanks ! I love comments :-)