In Which the Pirate Has Mended.

Day Four: 31st March. Where are they now?
Write about the fate of a past knitting project. Whether it be something that you crocheted or knitted for yourself or to give to another person. An item that lives with you or something which you sent off to charity.

There are a lot of different aspects to look at when looking back at a knitting project and it can make for interesting blogging, as much of the time we blog about items recently completed, new and freshly completed. It is not so often that we look back at what has happened to these items after they have been around for a while.

How has one of your past knits lived up to wear. Maybe an item has become lost. Maybe you spent weeks knitting your giant-footed dad a pair of socks in bright pink and green stripes which he then ‘lost’. If you have knit items to donate to a good cause, you could reflect on the was in which you hope that item is still doing good for its owner or the cause it was made to support.

People often ask me if I wear out my handknit socks. “You must have put so much work into them,” they say, a concerned look creeping into their eyes, “and then you walk on them. I wear out my socks so fast. Is it even worth it to knit socks?” The funny thing is that I have not yet worn out a pair of my socks, not even the first pair that I finished in 2006. Admittedly, I don’t wear those often as they don’t fit perfectly. But still. Even the socks I wear more often are still going strong. One pair has perhaps felted more than the others, but the fabric itself is still solid.

The Fleeps, on the other hand, I finished in January of 2009 and they are the knitted items I wear most often. (ETA: The Fleeps, or Fleep-Tops, are actually flip-top glove/mittens. The tips of my thumbs, forefingers, and middle fingers are exposed for things like tying shoes and signing receipts, and the other two fingers are fully closed. They are the best glove/mittens in the world, probably because I took the time to completely custom-fit them. You can see the Ravelry project page here.) They’ve seen three winters now (and I do wear them into early spring) and just before going to Winterlude in February I noticed that the tops of some of the half-fingers had started to wear out to the point of unraveling. Fortunately, the thin spots were easy enough to fix with duplicate stitching, but I’m thinking that it might be almost time to knit a new pair of Fleeps for myself. As a side note, wow, my hair was short in that picture! It’s now well past my shoulders and back into “long hair” territory.

What would be the use of knitting something like socks or gloves, only to have them sit on a shelf looking pretty? I make my knitwear to be worn, to be used, and I know that eventually it will wear out past the point of repair.

Anyway, the Fleeps are without a doubt my favourite thing I’ve ever knitted. I like my hats, and scarves, and socks. But I love my Fleeps, and I can’t imagine ever not having a pair. This is why knitting is great – a storebought item may be discontinued, but as long as there’s yarn, I can always make more Fleeps! I already have the yarn for the next pair in my stash, in a deep dark green tweed colourway. (I also need a new winter coat, so I hope to find one that goes with deep dark green gloves.)

10 Responses

  1. Tawnee says:

    What are fleeps?

  2. Nat says:

    Ooooh, I totally need some fleeps!!!

  3. ewenique says:

    I admit I’m guilty of knitting items I hardly ever wear=SOCKS! I just struggle with this. I have no problems wearing shawls, hats, mittens and everything else I knit but not my hand knit socks. I look at them loads if that helps, I just hardly (once or twice a month?) wear them :(

    I’m working on this little issue of mine though.

  4. Vivianne says:

    Don’t the flip-tops get in the way when they’re flipped back ?

  5. Karen says:

    My favorite part of finishing a new knit is wearing it. I love it when others wear what I knit too. My mother saves it all for “best” and never wears it:(
    I think I’ll make some fleeps for next winter.

  6. del says:

    I agree, knitted items should be worn and used and loved.

  7. Butterfly says:

    My own fingerless mitts are starting to show wear too. I agree that we should wear what we love to its death, then throw said item a lovely wake at which we knit a new one!

  8. Amanda says:

    I need to knit myself a pair of “Fleeps”. My hands are always freezing – winter OR summer (I live in TN and the AC makes the indoors feel arctic by the start of June!). I’ll have to take a look at the pattern you used and see if I’m up to it!!

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