There are those among you who may not know what nupps are. Dictionary.com doesn’t know either. Nupps are little bundles of stitches that are often found in Estonian or lace knitting that create texture and dimensionality.
They also make me extremely angry.
Popcorn stitches, bobbles, nupps…all of these things create great amounts of unnecessary rage inside of me. I am not a fan of such texture in most knitted garments. Anyone wearing a sweater with bobbles on it earns my repulsion and disrespect pretty much instantly, especially if you made it yourself.
I know that my perspective on this is not a popular one. It’s not really like most people love nupps or bobbles or anything. I just think they don’t care enough to hate them with my vitriol. However, certain projects come along where the texture is understated and classy, and I have to swallow my distrust and derision and just knit those goddamn nupps.
Stupid-beautiful-lovely-and-otherwise-thoroughly-enjoyable Swallowtail Schmawl, I’m talking to you.
See all of those black dots? Those are the nupps. See the black boxes around them? That means that they repeat. Often.
See the little 5 with the carat over it? This is where I frequently lose my mind.
Purling five stitches together. Even when you’ve finally got your stupid needle in there properly, the panic doesn’t end.
Because then you’ve got to somehow slide that needle out with the yarn wrap firmly in place without ruining everything and yanking out any other perfectly innocent bystander stitches. It’s not until you’re somewhere around here…
…that you remember the hard part is over and that you successfully executed the maneuver. (I totally just had to check that to make sure I spelled it properly. I love you, Google.)
But the relief is short-lived, because you then remember that you only have about 10 stitches to go before you have to do it again. And even when you finish that one, there’s still about eleventy-billion more of these freaking things in the border of this goddamn so-pretty-and-so-soft-that-I-promise-I-will-try-to-stop-freaking-out shawl.
A singular nupp, looking so innocent. Boo. I’d be slightly angrier still if they weren’t lining up and looking so nice as the rows progressed.
And I know I’ll probably get people telling me to lighten up, not just on my tension on those loops to make the purling easier, but also on the poor, defenseless nupp that makes Estonian lace so unusual and coveted. I could perform this task hundreds of thousands of times and still feel as though it is mocking me with its little neat and tidy cluster, constantly reminding me that I might one day change my tone and create a bobbled sweater for my cat or something.
Nope. Never going to happen. Not as long as I can’t get through a row without a mistake or a moment where I forget I’m supposed to be breathing, too. I just have to keep telling myself that I like knitting. I really do. I swear.