I cast-on a new knitting project today, without doing a gauge swatch. I will pause here for you to take a moment to gasp and shake your head at me. Yes, I know, I always say "do a gauge swatch". But sometimes when I'm so excited to start a project I just want to dive in, with wild abandon. So, ignoring the sage guidance of many brilliant knitters, I just went for it.
I wasn't too worried about gauge with this project because I knew it was only 72 stitches I was casting on, and this way I could get a better feel for the yarn and the project. As the swatch was directed to be knit flat in Stockinette Stitch, and the hat ultimately was being knit in a 2x2 rib in the round. So I told myself if was off gauge I would rip it out and start over.
Well guess what? After four rows I stopped to take it all out. There were a few factors that brought this on. One, I realized that the long tail cast on wasn't looking as smooth as I would have liked, and I wanted to switch to a tubular cast on. Second, the size US 10 needle was creating too loose of a fabric and I felt the finished hat wouldn't have the warmth required for those below freezing days here in the Catskill Mountains.
Once I was on track with my project, using the tubular cast on and a size US 9 16" needle, the project proceeded smoothly. As I held three strands of yarn together I found absolute pleasure from the texture of yarn, the ease of the stitches, and the simplicity of knitting a hat in the round.
At times when I'm excited or motivated to get onto my yoga mat or yoga chair I can find myself in a similar situation. Where perhaps I'm eager to get into my downward facing dog--be it on all fours on the floor or supported with a chair--and if I move into it too soon my body protests. I'm unable to straighten my legs, and my upper back rounds forward. The graceful lengthening of my spine and back of my legs, is just not there yet.
So, similar to taking out my knit stitches, I take my body out of the downward dog position and begin again. Then gently move my body until it is ready for the bigger movement.
Ultimately, if we begin a project or yoga session with intention and stay present, it doesn't matter so much about that gauge swatch, or the length of warmup. We are fully aware of what we are doing and what is needed in that moment. Overtime, as we practice more and more, the easier it is to begin anew and adjust as we go along.
Be present, be light, and bring joy to all that you do.