Unlike some creative projects, where starting is exciting or finishing feels like a triumph, my favorite part of knitting is the middle. I like the actual knitting, watching it grow with each stitch. So maybe it’s not surprising that I balk at the boring tasks that go with knitting projects like gauge swatches and blocking.

Unblocked Stitch Sampler Shawl in Dream In Color Classy (Mermaid Shoes)

Just as I need to be pushed before I’ll bother to knit a gauge swatch, it was only because I was worried about the finished look of the shawl I was making that I bothered to block it. Am I ever glad I did! It turned out that I had dropped a stitch in the middle.

Oops! A stitch that’s flapping in the wind.

I knew I’d lost a stitch at the time, because the pattern required a fixed number of stitches and I had to add one at one point. I wasn’t thinking or I’d have looked for the dropped stitch then and fixed it on the fly. I guess I was so into my knitting I couldn’t be bothered to stop.

Normally for a dropped stitch, I get out my crochet hook and add the stitches in the ladder (as most dropped stitch how-tos show you to do), but I had finished the shawl. Since I had added another stitch, there was no ladder to repair, and I wasn’t about to take it apart. I found a video about fixing a dropped stitch on a finished project and followed the instructions.

If you look closely, you can see where I’ve repaired this. But blocking should fix it, right?

The repair worked well enough. Another knitter once told me that:

A knitting mistake isn’t a mistake if you can’t see it from the back of a galloping horse.

I hold to that rule. But my blocking journey isn’t done.

Before blocking: Maybe the dropped stitch is supposed to look loopy and loose like that, but I think it looks messy.

The whole reason I started this blocking to begin with was the wavy dropped stitch* section that was a loopy mess in my shawl. I am still not sure how to deal with it. The part I’ve blocked looks better, but not great.

A little less messy after blocking, but still not great. Now what?

I’m not sure I want to mess with blocking the rest of the shawl, but maybe I better. There could be another mistake I need to fix in there.

Have you ever been saved by doing the “boring” thing?

Project Details for the interested:
Stitch Sampler Shawl (free pattern on Ravelry)
Dream In Color Classy yarn, Mermaid Shoes colorway

*Here “dropped stitch” is a specific knitting stitch, not a mistake. Totally confusing that they call it this, but this is the only name I know for it.

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