Life is full of hard, hard days. Slogs of boredom, pain, struggling, screwing up.
I am not here to talk about those days. I am here to talk about the good days. The days where you feel connected, thrillingly alive, hopeful, forgiving, and happy. I had one of those days lately, and it is a bit knitting related, so I thought I'd talk about it.
I have written a few posts here that I'm pretty proud of. I shared my knitting excitement, my love of yarn, but more than that, I've shared about my life. And especially, how the focus on knitting, the creativity, the moving of the hands helped me during my dark days of grief and loss. The post Vincent and the Doctor was an important one for me. Knitting was there with me, for me, as I created and learned and kept trying even when I didn't want to get out of bed.
So, I have continued, but haven't blogged as much. I've gotten back to full time work (4 days a week at least), and family activities have expanded as the kids have grown. They are 9 and 12 now, and my oldest son is off at summer camp right now! oh, my heart.
But, another big change is that I opened my heart to a wonderful man, slowly, not always gracefully either. And this past Memorial Day weekend, we got married.
It was a good, good day.
And the knitting related part? I made my dress! Here's the Ravelry page for My Wedding Dress. I used the lovely Maddie dress pattern from Kari-Helene Rane. It started with over 600 stitches cast on at the bottom of the skirt. I was using a lovely wool and silk blend and decided to add one row of a contrast color at the bottom of the skirt, the neckline, the edges of the sleeves.
I was into the lace pattern (over 600 stitches a row!) about an inch when I noticed that I twisted my join. Knitters, you know. Oh. So, I did what I needed to do. It was 2 months until the wedding. I turned the stitches around the needle to make a little … oh... let's call it a pleat?... and kept on going. It was a good choice, because I knew I had already built in my small flaw, my reminder that we can't control it all, that we are infallible and human, and sometimes that is good enough, too.
If you click on the link for the dress, you can see there were more challenges along the way. To briefly summarize it, I was knitting with dk weight on a pattern made for sport weight yarn, and my gauge failed to live up to my swatch.
I ripped back many inches twice, got out the calculator, and figured it out. I had made the sleeves in a bigger size than the dress. I worried and just decided that I had to let it go: the wedding would be great because I had friends and family and love, and that was fine. Everyone knew the dress was made by a crazed bride planning the whole shindig, and they would be understanding!
However, in retrospect, I was kind of hard on myself. I've been knitting for a while now. I teach knitting. I know a lot. And the dress turned out custom fit for the bride, with handmade details and love. It was done over, and pieced together in a way that fit. In a way that looked and felt good. In a way that I hope lasts a lifetime. I might no longer be talking about the dress.
So, now there is Michael, and me, and the boys. And a lifetime of piecing it together, doing it over when we mess up, making it work, and lots and lots of love.