Sometimes… You Just Wing It.

I have a hard time with moderation sometimes. If I’m going to schedule my time, I want to stick to my schedule. And that’s what I’ve been trying to do lately. Take notes, have a plan, make a schedule, use a planner. I mentioned recently that I was having issues with mismanaging time. Consequently, Mr KS & I had a long talk about that last week and how I can better handle my time and make the most of achieving my personal goals as well as the jobs I need to make happen within our family.

Sometimes though… things don’t go according to plan.

Sometimes… you have to create a new plan.

Sometimes… you just wing it.

And this whole juggling act of scheduling and being flexible… well, I’m kind of terrible at it.

My latest sock project has become quite the test because things have devolved a little bit into me winging it. It’s out of character for me. Usually I am the quintessential pattern follower. I love the order of following the step-by-step of a pattern — just like I like my schedule neatly written into my planner in its appropriately boxed off time. And, of course, that was my original plan here.

summer jubilee

During last year’s Tour de Fleece, I spun this skein of Three Waters Farm “Summer Jubilee.” It’s about 300yards of roughly sport weight 3-ply and from the start I wanted to knit socks with it. I was worried, however, about the low yardage. Sometime in the last couple of months, I noticed that the Dyeabolical’s shop had a mini-skein of the Grayson colorway so I snapped it up to use for toes and heels. Sure, it was fingering weight, but I was hopeful the two would be close enough. Fingering can be kind of fickle in its weight, after all.


I mean, don’t they look super nice together?!

Well, friends, they were not.

Last week while at the pool with the kids, I clicked away on the toes, all the while thinking, “this is too light to go with the Summer Jubilee skein,” but knowing full-well I was going to knit through the toes and try it anyway.

Yeah, they were just totally not the right combination. Because I need to work them 2aat to get the most from my handspun, that was a couple of hours I’d burned only to ultimately end up scrapping the toes and starting over, deciding to throw caution to the wind (because that’s working so well for me thus far in this project) and use handspun for the entire sock now despite the low yardage.

I did a quick gauge test and did some math to try to figure out a custom fit for these toe-up socks, again, to get the most from the handspun.

I knitted along for a good long while thinking, “These seem too big,” “I think these are going to be too big,” “This is just seems not right.” I trusted my math though.


And it was right about here that I finally admitted defeat, my math was faulty. These socks were too big.

So I ripped them back. Again.

I grabbed two different custom patterns. Remeasured all my measurements and then cast-on once again. I’ll say — if you ever want to conquer a cast-on that maybe you hadn’t commit to memory before, this method of starting over 3 or 4 times is a great way to do so! Judy’s Magic Cast-On is a part of my very being now.

img_7559 In any case, this attempt has me content with the gauge and density of the fabric and so far the fit feels right to me. I’ll know for sure in another inch or two, but I have a good feeling about this one. Those caution signals aren’t going off in my head either, so based on past experience, I’m taking this as a good sign.

As you can see, these socks will be fraternal twins, not identical. Thanks to how I spun the yarn and how I want to use the yarn, it’s just easier this way. Rather than winding 2 center-pull balls that match, I’m just pulling from the inside and the outside of the single center-pull ball. I have an easier time not making a twisty mess this way and I’m not the sort that needs my socks to match. Actually, I kind of prefer the fraternal twins look. So this method works perfectly for me.

It’s been kind of an ‘as the crow flies’ kind of path I’ve been on with this project and it’s really tested whatever goes off in my head telling me that either there is no schedule or there is a rigid schedule. I’m happy to say that it’s been going surprisingly well. Just as I moved some things around last week when the day I’d scheduled to take the kids to the pool had rainy weather and I — hold onto your hats — rescheduled it for two days later when the weather was nicer. It sounds ridiculous, but I have a weirdly hard time adapting to this type of thing when I have the plan set in my mind. I want to just plow ahead in the face of any challenges, but sometimes… you just have to wing it a little bit. Move things around. Be flexible.

I recently read a quote that really struck me and has stuck with me over the last few weeks.

There’s more to life than increasing its speed.

Attributed to Ghandi, I’m not sure how perfectly accurate the quotation is, but I like what it’s saying. Being intentional, working hard, striving to achieve goals — they are all worthy objectives. I just think that personally I need to work toward understanding that sometimes traveling as the crow flies to achieve these goals isn’t all bad. I don’t have to use the fastest route from point a to point b. And perhaps most importantly, just because you can’t accomplish something at the date and time you have it penciled in your planner, doesn’t mean you just don’t do it. There really is nothing wrong with starting over when something isn’t working quite right, to change tacks when we are on the wrong path. Sometimes we learn a lot about ourselves… and our foot size… and our pattern formulas along the way when we allow ourselves the room to make changes to the plan. And sometimes… when we have the fundamentals down, we have to be brave enough to fall back on and trust that knowledge, readjust the pattern, and just  wing it.

13 thoughts on “Sometimes… You Just Wing It.”

  1. LOVE the message in this! In particular, the quote, “There’s more to life than increasing its speed.” Now that I’ve retired, I’m learning this one and trying not to be afraid to take a few wrong turns and “wing it”. Thanks for the message EXACTLY when I needed it!

  2. Completely agree with Gandhi: slow it all down and savor each twist and turn too. Btw I think 300 yards would easily give you a cute pair of rose city rollers. 🤓

    1. True! Except that that pattern is written for a different weight of yarn and it’s too-down… I may improvise something similar though depending on how much yarn I have!

  3. I expect you will have enough, although they might not be as tall as you like. The way you are doing them, taat toe up is smart, you will be able to use every inch. I hear you on time, and planning. It is frustrating to have a plan and have it not work out, lol. Mr. TKS is smart to get you thinking about changes differently. 👍

    1. I agree! On both counts! I’ve rounded the heels on my socks and I’m thinking they’ll be a pretty respectable height. We shall see! I’m kind of addicted to them, so we may see sooner than later!

  4. First off, your hand spun is beautiful as usual. For us people who like to be in control, it can be hard to adapt to changes that we have no control over, darn that weather! I always think that I can do more in a day than I actually can. I recently gave a staff meeting on stress, sometimes we can control what’s happening and sometimes we can’t. The takeaway I got from it is to relax and “just breathe”.

    1. No plan survives contact with reality! I had grand plans yesterday after our (long) dentist appointment, but ended up running random last minute errands for Mr TKS the entire afternoon. Just got to roll with it!

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