Saturday, April 30, 2016

An UGH!

For those of you who aren't on Ravelry let me explain what an UGH is. When you post a project on Ravelry you can rate it. The lowest happiness rating is called an UGH. These projects are ones that didn't live up to their knitter's expectations in a major way. Some of them are hilarious. Socks that two feet could fit into, a onesie knit for a boyfriend that didn't quite work out, a mismatch of yarn and project, a pattern that was riddled with errors, for these reasons and many more a project can end up with this label.

Now I need to go back in time, about eight years if my memory is correct. I started knitting a sweater called Ribby Cardi. Looking back I'm not sure exactly why I started knitting this sweater. It has all the elements of a sweater that usually have me running for the hills trying to get far, far away from it. It is knit in five separate pieces, meaning there are five pieces to sew together. In this case they aren't just sleeves, they are raglan sleeves meaning there is a lot more seaming required than usual. Plus, and here is the real deal killer, this sweater has a zipper that needs to be sewn in. I despise sewing in zippers. Not only did I start knitting a sweater that had finishing details that would make a trip to the dentist for a root canal look like a more pleasant way to spend one's time, I had purchased cheap yarn to knit it with.

All of this meant that after knitting both fronts, the back and one sleeve I stuffed it in a bag and shoved it to the very back of a closet. Because if I finished that second sleeve I would then be faced with all of that finishing work I so despise. Fast forward to this spring. I was listening to a Knit British podcast and Louise made the wise suggestion to go through your stash and look at your unfinished projects. Then make a decision. Either rip it out or finish it. Those of you who aren't knitters might think this would be obvious, but to those of us who are knitters, well, I guess you could say we live in a state of unwarranted optimism as far as our projects go.

So I started thinking about that sad, neglected Ribby Cardi crumpled in a heap at the back of my craft closet. I eventually pulled it out and gave it some long, hard thought. In the end I decided to finish it. After all, it was almost done. Well, at least the knitting portion. And I did like the look of the sweater. And I don't own a single cardigan. Like so many other dreaded tasks, finishing the second sleeve wasn't nearly as bad as I had imagined it would be. In a few short nights it was complete and I was feeling pretty good about my knitterly self.

Those feelings did not last. I will spare you the trials and tribulations of trying to find a matching two-way zipper, which resulted in an order to an online zipper store. And I won't bore you with the details of installing that zipper. After all, there's not much of interest that can be said about FIVE hours of my life spent inserting the stupid thing. Which, I should add, looks like a five year old did it. Nor will I go on about sewing in raglan sleeves. I will leave it at this. Never. Again.

Of course, it all would have been worth it had I been left with something that was wearable.




 It doesn't look bad from the side.




It's passable from the back.




But from the front, all I have to say is UGH. I have a category of my wardrobe, much larger than it probably should be, that I think of as my dog walking clothes. This doesn't even qualify for that. It's going directly to the thrift shop, and I will just have to accept the fact all those hours of seaming and putting in that blasted zipper are hours of my life I will never get back.

Happily, there have also been some non-UGH things this past week. Alexandra and Josh came down for a visit.




And Rebekah and Ella were out his week for a few days while Anton was in San Francisco for work.




Some goslings have hatched down at the pond.




And now I am heading to Victoria to meet my new grandson Oliver, and to see my sweet Lucy. I hope you have a great weekend!

28 comments:

  1. I think the cardigan doesn't look half bad, Kristie. I do know how it feels to finish an UGH, I have a couple under my belt.... more so with sewing project actually. Wishing you a wonderful with your new grandson Oliver, and with Lucy of course. x

    ReplyDelete
  2. I think it looks good, I would be happy to have made it. I have lots of UGH projects, knitting but mostly my attempts to learn dressmaking, I'm ever optimistic that I will get better at it eventually.

    ReplyDelete
  3. I actually thought it looked good but it is how you feel yourself. Wishing you a wonderful time with your new Grandson, such a wonderful experience meeting them for the first time.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Oh, I know the feeling! However, I really don't think the sweater merits an UGH. By all means pass it on if you don't like it now it's finished, but don't do your knitting skills down in the process. :)

    ReplyDelete
  5. I think you are being way to hard on yourself, I like it from the front, actually I like it a lot. I think you should keep it just to keep you warm on cool evenings. I love the UGH category, my last crochet project was a definite UGH.
    Hugs,
    Meredith

    ReplyDelete
  6. I agree with everyone else here that I think it looks great on you and that you are the harshest critic (and I adore the brown/blue color combo). BUT...I also know very well for myself that if I don't like it, then I won't wear it no matter what anybody else says. My only suggestion would be to maybe pass it on to a fellow knitter since it did take so much of your time(that suggestion would be self-serving of course if I thought it would fit but alas I am quite a bit taller than you).

    Otherwise, go you for digging that one out and suffering through the finishing (I should be learning from your example, but I'm guessing I won't!).

    ReplyDelete
  7. I think I can see one reason why you don't like it (because it's the reason I wouldn't either) - the neckline isn't very flattering from the front. Otherwise it's great, and I love the colours. Well done for finishing it, though - I've got 2 or 3 sweaters on needles that won't ever get finished, as the arthritis in my hands is just too painful to hold a knitting project (& one of them is an alpaca sweater for Peter, which is lovely to handle, but ...!) Grr ... I don't like getting old, and he's in a worse state as he's got Macular Degeneration (wet version) in both eyes as well as arthritis, and has had to give up a lot of his hobbies including sailing and woodworking - very frustrating. Ah well - we'll keep doing what we can! Are you planning to visit Wales again (probably not for a while, with all those lovely grand-kids)? But if so, please come and see us.

    ReplyDelete
  8. We are our harshest critic. That said I think it's lovely and if I had a dog I'd be proud to wear it to walk him in.

    ReplyDelete
  9. Gosh I didn't think it was that bad in fact I think it looks just fine. Put it away and out of sight till the fall. Then pull it out, you might find you will think it's not that bad, in fact you will pat yourself on the back thinking that hey it's ok!! All of my projects get a time out and then later I'll think not so bad after all. Ella is cute as a button- have fun with your new grandson and Lucy!!

    ReplyDelete
  10. First time reading your blog, but your sweater is beautiful!! If I ever spent all those hours and ended up with something so nice, I would demand to be buried in it!

    Please don't give it to the thrift shop, wear it with pride! Maybe it's not perfect, but it's definitely an "A"!

    ReplyDelete
  11. You are SO hard on yourself!! That's the only part that makes ME say "Ugh"! I too think the sweater looks great, and I don't see the problem with the zipper (or maybe that's just the great photography!). But if you don't like it, you won't wear it, and someone else will get better use out of it.

    I missed the Oliver post! Congratulations on the new grandson ... what beautiful family photos you shared. Lucy looks like she is in heaven with a new baby brother to cherish. Have a wonderful time meeting him in person :)

    Wendy

    ReplyDelete
  12. I can see why you don't like it. The colours on their own are really lovely, but together the way they are doesn't work (at least not for me). I don't have any truly terrible ughs, but I do have some things that have been in time-out for a long time. Maybe given enough time they will magically improve?

    I hope you have a great trip out to the island - the weather has been totally gorgeous.
    - Christina

    ReplyDelete
  13. Nice to finish; I have some UFOs I just can't face. Someone will be thrilled to discover a sturdy beautifully done, handmade sweater at a thrift store!

    ReplyDelete
  14. It's a learning curve, Kristie! Gorgeous pic of Ella - what a poppet. Have a wonderful time meeting your new grandson :-) Sam x

    ReplyDelete
  15. Your cardigan looks fine to me too Kristie, but I know how it feels when you finish something and it just does not appeal any more. Well done for getting it out and finishing it (I should do that for a few more of my UFOs). I like the suggestion of putting it away, perhaps until next Autumn, and then one chilly day take it out for a doggie walk. Ella is soooo cute - she must melt your heart :) Enjoy meeting little Oliver and lovely Lucy.

    ReplyDelete
  16. I'm glad I learned my lesson on the latest baby sweater that I don't like to sew pieces up. Never again. However, I do like the looks of your sweater. Maybe in person it doesn't look as good. Have fun visiting the grandkids!

    ReplyDelete
  17. Well Kristie, being a nonknitter with only a halffinished mitten on my CV, I am only even more convinced on my options for retirementdays. They don't include, not even remotely, knitting. The cardigan looks a bit...well, nice enough but YOU look very nice. And I always say there is no effort or trial that not eventually will come in useful, if nothing else you will welcome the brighter moments even more!!! Grandchildren, children, ducklings, nice old ladies, sunrays and softsmelling buds.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. And Oh yes, all the lovely clothes you actually succeeded with!! There seem to be plenty!!!

      Delete
  18. Ella has grown so fast! How old is she now?

    ReplyDelete
  19. Hi Kristie, I'm sorry this one didn't work out the way you'd hoped. I don't think it looks bad, though. I'm sure it must be nice and warm. I'm sorry to have missed some of your posts lately. I saw that Oliver had arrived and I wanted to say, belatedly, congrats! I'm so happy for your family. Your grandchildren are all beautiful.

    ReplyDelete
  20. If I did any knitting I think all my efforts would have a rating of UGH! Sarah x

    ReplyDelete
  21. I haven't come across that rating category, I hope that none of my patterns end up there, you have terrified me now!!! Your cardigan doesn't look so bad in the pictures, but I can understand that it is different in real life! Such a shame after all of your hard work, it seems so unfair. I hope that someone will appreciate it! p.s. I love that you have categories of clothes for dog walking we have some like that for gardening - we call them scuffing!

    ReplyDelete
  22. It looks fine! But I have to confess a sizable portion of my wardrobe falls into that ugh category. They get used for yard work. When they get old, I'll wear one when I have a really dirty job so that when I'm done I can take it off and throw it out.
    Ella is so cute!

    ReplyDelete
  23. I am sorry to say that as lovely as the actual knitting is... my first thought with your picture of the front was 'this belongs on a man' Unfortunately some things don't work out the way we want! such a shame as the back and sides are a nice shape!

    ReplyDelete
  24. Well, I do like the colors! But it does look like it's a tad too big for you. I think someone else will appreciate it, though!
    Lovely pics, as usual!

    ReplyDelete
  25. I don't get it! What is wrong with that beautiful sweater?

    ReplyDelete
  26. It does look good to me. If a thrift shop shopper likes it, then two people are happy - someone will have a sweater she likes and you will know all that work is keeping someone warm.
    - Beth in Ontario

    ReplyDelete
  27. While I think it is a Fine sweater...life is too short to wear a hand knit that you aren't comfortable in and proud of.....send that baby to the local thrift shop.....someone else will be thrilled :)

    ReplyDelete