Let’s talk about frogging
If you’ve been in the crochet world for a little while, you’re probably familiar with the term ‘frogging’. If not, to frog is to ‘undo’, or rip out a number of stitches in your work to fix an earlier error.
I must admit, I did have to look up why ‘frogging’ was so called – turns out that the name comes from the repeated ‘rip-it, rip-it, rip-it’ motion, as you’re tearing apart each lovingly crafted stitch…
In case you couldn’t tell from the tone of this blog entry so far, I’ve recently had a fair bit of experience with frogging. I’m working on creating a pattern for a lovely soft jumper, designing as I make, and making as I go…So, as you can imagine, there have been plenty of opportunities for things to not quite work out as planned, and a few wobbles that needed ironing out.
The biggest incident that has required frogging so far has been the shaping from the underarm to the neck – at first I decided that I wanted to try and taper the front piece towards the neckline – which ended up proving less than successful and resulted in this uneven disaster:
Definitely wasn’t going to work…I decided that actually I would rather go for a boxier shape (which would also make the sleeve shaping easier). So, cue frogging all the way back to the beginning of the taper – including the bobbles! Now, this isn’t too big a deal, I’m sure many crocheters and knitters out there have had to frog MUCH worse, but it is disheartening when the realisation dawns that you have to undo the last couple of hours of work, scribble out all of the notes in your pattern-writing-notebook and start over.
I got back into the swing of things pretty quickly and the sweater is looking much better for it…I love how it’s turning out and I can’t wait to share it with the world! It’s going to take a fair bit of tweaking to get my scribbled notes into any form of readable pattern – but I’m working on it. For this particular rendition of this jumper, I’m using Aldi’s ‘Knit & Purl’ velvet yarn in Charcoal, Blush and Amethyst. I have been so pleasantly surprised by this yarn, it is a dream to work with and it is unbelievably soft!
I’ve been on a bit of a bobble spree lately – I just love them, they add such a great, fun textural quality! I wanted to have a repeating bobble pattern on this jumper in place of a cable – I think it works! Keep an eye out for more bobbly projects appearing on my Instagram soon…
Now, I am by no means an expert – but my top tips for frogging would be:
- Frog slowly – you don’t want to rip too far back and make even more work for yourself.
- Check your work as you go along – every row if you have to! It might seem like an obvious one, but it’s very easy to get caught up and suddenly 10 rows later, you realise something isn’t quite right (guilty).
- Put a stitch marker in the stitch you want to return to – again, it will help you know exactly when to stop pulling.
- Don’t beat yourself up – everyone makes mistakes and often mistakes aren’t noticeable – that said, don’t ruin something you’ve been working on for hours and hours just because you don’t want to go back a couple of rows (also guilty)…
- Finally, remember that practice makes perfect! Frogging is always going to be a part of creating something new or trying out a new technique…even if you’re an experienced maker, mistakes will happen! The more you do, the less frogging will be required.
What’s the worst frogging that you’ve ever had to do on a project? What do you do if you get half way into a large project and discover you made a mistake 20 rows back? Have you ever abandoned a project because of a mistake made early on?
Let me know!