Time to Finish


I’m talking about my weekend, I’m not nagging about the Revive-A-Vintage contest, lol. I spent this weekend finishing two projects and some handspun. It got me to thinking about the finishing stage of making things and how I both dread it and enjoy it.

Finishing projects

I had two days off and Austin had two days of patchy sun in amongst the rain. So I buckled down and finished Pepita, the fractal spun scarf and my handspun flax. I only had to rush out and save set-out-to-dry stuff twice from that wet stuff falling out of the sky.

Blocking, Sewing, and Making Buttons

I don’t like to finish things because I’ll be done with the project and I’ll never get to work on it again. I’ll have to start something else. I like to finish things because I’ll be done with the project and I’ll never have to work on it again. I’ll get to start something else. Also finishing is not knitting/crochet/spinning which is what I like to do. All the finishing chores eat into my fun time. But if you’re not willing to take the time to finish something properly it will never look its best. It will always look, well, half finished. As a maker of things my time is worth a lot to me. The more time it takes me to make something, the more its worth to me. I want my stuff to look its best. Its pride and vanity and obsessive-compulsive disorder all rolled up into one singular need to get it right.

So I finish things up with a sense of impatience, a little sadness, and deep satisfaction. What can I say, I live in ambivalence.

And making buttons is fun. Both the fractal spun scarf and Pepita needed matching Dorset buttons. I did look forward to that. I’ve explained in another post that there are all sorts of button styles and I only know the one: basic cartwheel. But that’s enough for me. I can use left-over yarn bits and make matching buttons for my projects and that’s handy.

Dorset buttons in handspun yarn
Buttons for the fractal spun scarf
Dorset buttons
Buttons for Pepita

Its not hard to do. All you need is a tapestry needle, a stitch marker, and yarn. A while back I posted a set of video tutorials with instructions for each step. (I just went back and scanned that post and YES! WATCH OUT FOR THE BUTTON THIEF. She stuck again this weekend in fact.)

Here is the fractal spun scarf all done. I think I’ve promised to write up the pattern. I better get on that, huh?

Finished fractal spun scarf

And Pepita! Its still damp so the buttons haven’t been sewn on. Yet. Also, I should mention that the mommy-to-be asked for no feet on this. The original pattern does call for the legs to be finished off with little built-in socks. To compensate for the no-socks I’ve lengthened the ankle ribbing enough so it can be folded over. I do hope that’s enough to keep it from riding up the legs. I guess it will depend on how much of a kicker Baby Boy is.

Finally the flax is spun and finished. I was making fun of myself with last Saturday’s post and on Google+. When I fill up a bobbin with handspun it always feels like Done! but its not Done! The yarn has to be skeined off the bobbin, washed, and dried. And even then… its only yarn, lol. It still has to be made into something doesn’t it? Well my flax is ready for that stage of its life and I’ll stop with this pic for now. The flax deserves it own post I think.

handspun flax drying

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"There is no failure. Only feedback." - Robert Allen

3 Comments on "Time to Finish"

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All so nice!
I started needle-felting when I was having trouble finding buttons…never thought of making Dorset buttons, but I wish I had! Yours are so pretty. And the bitsy baby suit! Awwwww. But really, it’s the flax yarn that blows me away.
I’m working on another Harriet hat, but don;t know if I’ll make the deadline. I think I will. I might. I’ll try. The first one was the Peter Tosh model. This time I am aiming for “fits the freakishly small styro head.”


I’ve always wished I could hire somebody to do finish work for me. I love “finishing” a pattern, but when it comes time for any finish work, I’m ready to move on to another project!

I love the black and white buttons, I think the Pepita looks better without the feet, and congratulations on finishing the flax!


Thanks! And thanks for the no-foot vote of confidence. I’ve been obsessively worrying about how it will fit with out them.

You’re not the only one who feels that way about finishing. I once had a friend bribe me into sewing up and finishing a baby cardigan (with a home cooked meal and a bottle of wine).