Tuesday, September 05, 2006


I ventured into my craft closet over the weekend to deal with the UFOs. We all have them -- those Unfinished Objects that mock us with our failed attempts to create something beautiful. In addition to the unfinished counted cross-stitch started ten years ago and two quilt tops awaiting quilting, I found the remains of a poncho I attempted to crochet two years ago.

What a disaster that was. The only crochet I'd done before was granny squares. But when I went to the store looking for a knitted pattern for a poncho, everything I found was too bulky. I wanted something lacy looking, which led me to the crochet books. Feeling over-confident, I bought a bunch of purple yarn and a hook and set out to fashion a poncho.

I worked. And worked. I used up all my yarn and had to buy more. The poncho became three shades of purple because I kept running out of my original yarn and, unable to find the same dye lot, switched to a different shade. It was also very, very heavy. Obviously, I was doing something wrong. I stashed it in the closet and went back to knitting. I decided crochet hooks are for picking up dropped stitches.

Then I decided to knit a sweater for my dog. And I remembered all that purple yarn. So into the closet I dove and found the bag with the poncho. Then I spent an hour last night unraveling all my work and rolling the yarn into neat balls. That's the beauty of needlework -- unlike some other crafts, you can reuse your mistakes.

Which led me this morning to my desk, where I pondered the UFOs of my writing career. The manuscripts and ideas that never quite got off the ground. I never throw them away. Is it possible I could reuse some of that material for another project?

I'm thinking specifically of a short story I've been asked to contribute to an anthology for Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers I have no idea what I should write. But now I think I'll explore the UFOs in my file cabinet and see if anything there sparks an idea.

Meanwhile, I'll keep you posted on the dog sweater. The dog in question was lying in my lap last night as I tried to work. My husband was laughing as I tried to work around the large black lump in my lap. I'm convinced he (the dog that is) understands English, so I suppose he knows this project is for him.


Blogger LauraP said...

Of course the dog understands English. Mine do, though they're not so fluent as the cats.

UFOs - thank you for that term. It's the perfect acronym, and so much more elegant than what I usually call such things.

3:51 PM  
Blogger Barbara Bretton said...

Cindi, I remember crocheting a poncho during the winter of 1969-1970. It was coffee bean brown, cafe au lait, and a light mocha -- the colors worked wonderfully together. The pattern was from McCall's Needlework Arts & Crafts and worked up easily. It looked absolutely great until I put it on. The damn thing felt like chain mail. H E A V Y! And I felt like Sasquatch in it. 5'9" of double crochets comin' at you! The poncho, to me, is basically an artsy-crafty circus tent with pretensions. But great fun to make. I have a pattern for a knitted poncho for a Barbie doll that's beyond adorable but it only confirms the fact that a woman needs Barbie's diminutive dimensions to pull it off.

12:56 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Cindi .. Now my Ruby Carnelian is jealous. HE wants a lovely purple sweater, too. What sort of pattern are you using? I have some ideas .. wanna collaborate?? Tell friend hubby that of course Dog understands .. they run on pure intuition and instinct and don't have all that murkey head nonsense to much it up! Warm hugs!
Maggie .. Dr Maggie # aol . com

6:51 PM  

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