13584175_294871507569637_1784062938_nOne of the knitting goals I made for myself in 2016 was to knit a sweater. Not because I think they’re particularly difficult (there are some really great beginner projects out there, I’ll talk about that more in a minute) but because patience has never been a strong point of mine, and in order to knit an entire sweater, you need to have patience. A lot of my completed projects are smaller ones done in a day or two, using very little yarn. The afghan squares I do monthly are a great example. Lately baby clothes have been another great example (though I do have a good reason for making those at least). I’ve been trying to work on my patience and I like to think it’s coming along, but it’s a hard thing to gauge.

As it just so happened the Beginner’s Group I belong to on Ravelry picked a pattern called $5 in Paris as our monthly KAL. I took one look at it and fell in love – and convinced myself that THIS would be the sweater I could actually complete.

Turns out I was right.

I started it July 2nd and by July 9th it was completed. I made a size medium, knowing I wouldn’t be able to try it on due to being 24 weeks pregnant. I decided to bypass the shaping as the initial run of the pattern excluded it and it looked fine. Better than fine, even. I tried it on and the shoulders and arms fit wonderfully, chest was a little tight (no surprise there) and I couldn’t even begin to get it over my pregnant belly, but I was excited knowing that once I have my baby I’ll have a beautiful hand knit sweater that I can wear (maybe not right away, but I’ll get there). I knit it with KnitPicks Brava Worsted in cobblestone and dublin.

The pattern was clear and very simple. I only needed to know a few stitches, and most of them I had already used in the past. These stitches included knitting in the round (I’ve been doing that since I first taught myself to knit), kfb (knit front and back which is a type of stitch increase), k2tog (knit two together, which is a stitch decrease), and ssk (slip slip knit).

In my picture above the sweater isn’t blocked yet, I had something else on my mat so it would have to wait, but I’m still incredibly pleased with the result. Knowing that I have knit myself an actual garment, that I can wear, that I made with my own two hands.. Well, that’s pretty satisfying, especially as someone who is self taught.

I think when it comes to learning skills and bettering ourselves it’s incredibly important to remember to also challenge ourselves. To keep trying until we reach our goals. Not to get discouraged and of course to allow ourselves to feel that sense of pride when we finally accomplish those goals no matter what they are or how insignificant they may seem to someone else. Don’t forget to pat yourself on the back, you deserve it.