You probably remember the moment when you grew up. That significant lesson the world taught you and after what you entered adulthood. I remember mine very well. It was painful but oh! so unavoidable and necessary.
But now I am thinking of another kind of awakening. I am referring to a moment that changed me radically as a knitter and needle worker in general. I had been knitting and sewing for years, I was well over 30 when this happened and I am sort of ashamed of me getting to know this so late in my career. It was early 1990's, I was taking courses in doll making and at that time making tiny leather shoes for the dolls, doing fine embroidery on them. I was showing the shoes to my Mom and complaining of how difficult it was to sew on the leather - and then she asked me: "What kind of a needle you are using?"
I proudly showed her the tiny quilting needles I was using, I was sure she had never seen so small needles. All the leather needles I had were clumsy and large, impossible to use on the tiny shoes. My Mom, crafter, went into her craft room and brought me back two tiny leather needles and told me to try them. Their eyes were so tiny I could hardly see them and the point was shaped the way leather needles are. She told me that she had only few and to take good care of the needles. I don't know just where Mom had bought them. After sewing with them, I never looked back. I made a pincushion that was devoted to these two beauties and never mixed them with the ordinary needles. I still have one of the two sitting on that said pin cushion. And the lesson was, no matter how good equipment you are using, it just does not do the job if it is not the right equipment for the job. (The second lesson was to listen to Mom. She was then and is always right.)
Ever since I have collected needles. Whenever I am in a shop that sells needles I will go and check their inventory and buy if I see there something interesting. Before you came across good needles very seldom and had to seize the moment but lately buying has become easier, mainly thanks to the internet. But I can't get over the old habit and that has resulted in a big selection of different types to different jobs.
Finishing is the part of the project that can really make a difference in the result. One has to use judgment and be willing to try several approaches before really making the final decisions. I still don't like doing seams in knits, I mean sewing the seams when grafting is not possible and will try my best to avoid seams but I don't detest all finishing. Quite the opposite, I don't mind picking up stitches and grafting and blocking and crocheting some. (I know how to seam, I just don't appreciate the bulk and I feel very strongly about this. Just personal opinion!)
Part of the finishing is gathering the right tools.
All the best wool for you for the next week!