Tuesday, January 03, 2023

When to Change

Someone once said to me that the challenge with admiring something I had knit, was that invariably I had changed something about the pattern - either on purpose or occasionally because I wasn't reading correctly and decided to go with it - so recreating what I did was tough.
One on the batches of dumplings I made and froze so I could make deliciousness to consume for the new year involved butternut squash. 
I was using a recipe, but the recipe called for boiling the squash, and I thought well I could, but I could also roast it, and so I did that instead.
I have another batch I made with brussel sprouts and those I usually roast, but the recipe called for sauteing, and then tossing in some miso, and so I did that. 
And it's kind of the same. Sometimes the changes I make to recipes or knitting patterns are because I know the options and understand why you could go with one, but in the moment choose the other. 
Sometimes the reason is time, personal preference, or just funsies. 
I once walked into a knitting store that I had never been in before and had a person ask me which of the two options to do for their knitting pattern. They had the option to bind off and pick up stitches, or not bind off. I talked through the why, if you bound off and picked up you would get a seam, and if you didn't then you wouldn't. 
And they said, "Yes, but which would you do?"
I'm sorry to tell you I don't remember which option I chose. It was clear that the person did not want to make a choice, they wanted the choice to be made. Which hey, fair. I once read a shawl pattern that started by saying, start with your preferred method on making a triangle, and thought to myself, that's just a little too much freedom there, pattern person. 
Some things you get to understand the things behind, and it helps you spot errors, or know when you can deviate. Sometimes, the deviation works, and sometimes it does not. And that's okay too. It's data. 
And some things, are of course, the fun thing we do to relax and maybe don't want to have to learn more or make new decisions about. And that's fair too.