On Frogging…

Ugh frogging. If you don’t know what it is, it’s not because you haven’t done it. Because we all have. It’s the nickname for the dreaded task when you undo your work. Because you “rip it, rip it”. Get it?

When I first started, I would do anything to avoid frogging. It felt like the ultimate admission of failure. That my work just wasn’t good enough and I’d wasted my time.

I’ve changed my perspective on that though. Yeah, those stitches might not be good enough, but *I’m* good enough to not settle for anything less than great. I will undoubtedly spend all my free time crocheting, so what’s the difference if I’m redoing something I’ve already done or forging forward in unfamiliar territory? I have a better chance of achieving perfection if I’ve already gone through and attempted once. I probably won’t make the same mistakes again, right? Okay, sometimes I do, but the odds are less.

There are some mistakes you can just live with – you seem to be one double crochet short but don’t notice any gaps anywhere. Or you did a chain 2 where you should have done a chain 3 but you’re working stitches over that chain so it will probably stretch a little. That’s not worth frogging over. But if you have 11 repeats where you should have 12, that’s a major problem and it won’t go away with an extra increase here or there.

I’m working on a shawl design and realized that I don’t have enough yarn left to finish the way I’d originally planned, so I frogged. Heartbreaking, but I really want this to look the way I want it to look and I’d rather deal with that little bit of irritation than the major irritation of it not looking right.

There are sometimes alternatives to frogging. Sometimes you can get away with a few increases or decreases if your stitch count is off. If the probably is in the row you just finished and you don’t want to rip all the way back, you can also make a tiny snip, undo some stitches carefully, attach a new strand with a magic knot, redo the incorrect stitches and sew in your ends. This is especially good for very long rows but it’s tricky so only tackle it if you’re really confident. You can even go down a few rows as long as you remember which direction each row is going.

Just remember, everyone makes mistakes. But if you don’t frog, that mistake will live there forever. Are you going to be more bothered by looking at the mistake or by redoing a few rows? For me, it’s always better to frog and be happier with the finished product.

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