I had an email “conversation” with Mim yesterday that I found to be really interesting.
Mim was debating blocking a sock because she was concerned that it was lumpy. I left her a comment saying that the lace socks that I’ve knit have been just fine once I’ve worn them so I don’t bother blocking them. The *ahem* ampleness of my leg *ahem* seems to spread out the lace just fine. However, Mim then pointed out that these socks are being knit for someone other than herself and therefore they can not be lumpy.
Hunh. Socks for someone else cannot be lumpy. Socks for self can be lumpy. And that’s when I realized that I would do the same thing. When I’m knitting for myself, I sort of wing it. With socks, mittens, whatever it is, I just don’t really worry about perfection when it’s for me. And yet, when I’m knitting for someone else, suddenly the goal is absolute perfection. There can be no wonkiness in the thumb increases of a gifted mitten. Socks must match perfectly. Sweater seams must be flawless and shawls must be blocked to within an inch of their lives.
What’s up with this? Why, oh why, do we (well, Mim and I, anyway) consider something knit for ourselves to be substandard? Does this mean we don’t value ourselves enough to strive for perfection in the knitted items we keep?
Oh, this sock is just for me, I don’t care if the stripes line up.
Or is it that we’re trying to garner recognition for the importance of our knitting?
Look at this perfect sock I knit for you! I know you could buy one for a fraction of the cost but isn’t this amazing? Of course it’s worth my time to create something that’s so much better than store bought.
I’ve been thinking about this a lot and really wondering what it means about myself as a knitter and a person. I’d love to hear what you all think about this topic!