On Finishing Unfinished Business

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We all have ongoing projects. Those creative tasks which never seem to get done, sometimes for valid reasons, and sometimes for silly reasons. This blog post, for example, is a piece of unfinished business. I took the photos in this post a good few weeks ago, but life kept getting in the way. I wanted to get a photo of me wearing the scarf but the right moment, in my eyes, never materialised. So, this post remained unfinished. That is, until I kicked myself to stop giving excuses, and actually write. I want to write a blog post, so I should just do it, right? Yet, other things often seem to get in the way. Please tell me this sounds familiar to some of you, and reassure me it’s not just me!

This scarf was one of my first solo knitting projects, and the first one where I chose wool specifically for a project. I remember finding matching pastel wool, the softest wool I would have knitted with, having previously just used stuff we had lying around the house. My plan was for a long scarf with different stripes of different lengths, in a random pattern. I started knitting, and it was hard. I kept losing stitches, the silky wool kept wanting to slip off the metal needles. I knitted it for a bit, and then it got buried somewhere. About a year later, I knitted a bit more. Like this the scarf slowly but surely grew, until one day I picked it up from the bottom of my knitting bag and realised it was only a few rows from being the right length. What’s lovely about this scarf is that I can track my knitting progress, from a variable tension and obviously picked up stitches, to weaving in ends invisibly and slipping stitches at the ends of rows to create a smooth edge. There’s a real personal journey in this scarf, and the fact I can wear that is pretty great!

Sometimes, you just need to get things done. I could procrastinate, wait until a ‘perfect’ moment to photograph the work around my neck, and later write about it here. Or, I could realise that I could complete is now for certain, or leave it unfinished, with no certainty of completion. I mean, you all know what scarves look like on a human, right? It’s not like I’m going to go into depth about fit and tension. There’s a part of me thinking that this post is terrible, that it’s not perfect, but honestly, it doesn’t really matter. It’s ok if things you make aren’t perfect. Creativity has a value in and of itself, and it is a combination of the process and the finished product which make it worthwhile. In this case, the process was long but enjoyable, and the fact I have now finished such an early work gives me an immense sense of satisfaction.

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