Monday, February 1, 2010

Mend It!

I have this sweater. I'd call it a "boyfriend sweater", except I started it for my first husband, and finished it for my second. It's a lovely cabled pattern. My first husband even went with me to choose the yarn, a lovely 100% wool, reasonably priced, and he was excited about it. About the sweater, anyway. But, sweaters take time, and events occurred, and he was gone before I finished it. I put it away for a while. A long while. Years, in fact. Then, on a long car trip to CA, while dating my 2nd husband, I started working on it again. Finally finished it, before we married, I think. He wore it a couple times, but it was clearly not a favorite. No offense, I'm sure, it just wasn't his thing. Enough not his thing, that he left it behind. (maybe that's unfair of me - I might have moved it from his drawer. or something. but not with the intent that he leave it. In fact, I felt bad, and put it back in the not-yet-empty drawer, and put a note on it saying he should take it. but he didn't.)

Somewhere along the line, I noticed it had a spot of something on it, and when I picked it up to inspect it for any more spots, I found a hole in the ribbing. You can't wash a sweater that has a hole until you've mended it, or you risk that hole getting bigger, so I set it aside. That was 8 years or so ago.

Every once in a while, I'd pick it up and look at it, contemplate fixing that hole, and getting it cleaned, and instead, I'd put it back in the drawer.

A couple weeks ago I was finally ready to do it, and determined that I'd follow through. (If anyone is thinking I'm weird for procrastinating this, let me assure you that had it been in a portion of the sweater that was plain knitting, I'm sure I would have done it sooner. It was the idea of trying to invisibly mend ribbing that was stalling me.) I scouted out the left over yarn (incidentally, when I bought the yarn, I somehow ended up with 6 extra balls, even though I'm pretty sure I calculated the yardage correctly when I chose the yarn that wasn't what the pattern suggested. So I have enough more for a whole sweater, I'm guessing), couldn't find the partially used ball, nearly put the project away because I hated to start a new one just for a few yards, but finally just told myself it was time to mend the darn thing. Put it all in a bag, and set it by the front door. I'd take it with me when I took my son to his regular appointment later that week.

And I did. I took it with me. Guess how long it took to mend that hole? You'll never guess. I had about an hour sitting in that waiting room, with nowhere else to be. (I do that on purpose. I could run errands, but it's only an hour, and the couch is comfy, so I make myself relax and work on my latest project.) Can you guess?

Fifteen minutes.

I know. Eight YEARS of not being able to wear the sweater, a few minutes pulling the yarn out of my stash (plus 1/2 hour wasted hunting for the partial ball), fifteen minutes of actual work on the sweater, and I'm done.


When I got home later, I held it up to inspect it closer, make sure I knew where any spots were, that there were no more holes, etc. And there was one more hole. In the "berry" pattern. Ugh. Not an easy place to mend. But, no, I was DETERMINED to cross this chore off my list. I picked up my yarn and needle again, and very calmly, very carefully, successfully invisibly mended the hole among the berries. Took all of five minutes. Very glad I made myself sit right back down and do that.

One more close inspection, and yup, I was really done. No more holes. Plus, I worked at the spot, and got off whatever it was.

I think I'll still have it cleaned, though. I'm a little concerned about what might have made the holes. And that yarn must be classified as "suspect", I think. It was stored under my bed, away from my current stash (because the last time I worked with that yarn, that's where the stash was, and none of that got moved. don't know why.), so I think the stash is safe. But the 6 balls, one of which showed signs of possibly being eaten, and the partial one, which of course I found a couple days later, are going in the freezer for now. And the sweater is going to the cleaners.

(Note: post title is in reference to a bit in Om Shanti Om, wherein the "junior artiste", in an effort to impress Shanti, puts on an elaborate fake filming of an action flick, with him as the hero, gunfighting, wrestling a tiger, and winking at the camera, with the catch phrase of "mind it!" I can't even guess at why he chose those words. You gotta love Bollywood.)

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