RTFI – Read The Flipping Instructions

Some people will read the manual only as a last resort, when everything else has failed. You might think this doesn’t apply to embroidery, and I agree that the last resort mindset is probably not very prevalent among stitchers. But as for reading the instructions rather later than would have been wise – well, I will admit to having opened a kit and, entranced by the lovely fabric and the prospect of starting an exciting new project, said “let’s get you hooped up, you beauty!” only to find out subsequently that the instructions start “before you mount your fabric in the hoop…” Ah.

But you’d think, wouldn’t you, that that couldn’t possibly happen if the instructions were your own. Think again – it nearly did.

Remember this one? It’s Hengest with his wrongly-positioned pink spot. The second arrow in the picture points to where the pink should have been: two spots to the right. So when I had unpicked the spot, and quite some time afterwards (other things having got in the way for a few weeks) finally got round to re-stitching it in the right place, I knew exactly where it needed to be.

Hengest's spot in in The Wrong Place

In spite of my certainty, and my eagerness to finally get that spot done, some slight niggle deep down persuaded me to just cast a quick glance at the numbered diagram showing which spot is to be stitched in which colour.

The pink spot actually goes one spot to the right of the wrongly placed one.

It won’t surprise you that from now on I will compulsively read any instructions and notes that come with a project, whether someone else’s or my own. In this case it saved me from having to unpick all over again, muttering under my breath “out, damned spot”. It got me right back into Hengest, who now has not only his pink spots, but his orange ones as well!

Hengest with correctly placed blue, pink and orange spots

Incidentally, I’ve been playing with my new Silk Mill silks – how are these for Silk Hengest’s spots?

Silks for Hengest's spots

2 comments on “RTFI – Read The Flipping Instructions

  1. Or RTFM, as computer people say. The “M” stands for “manual” and the F… we’ll, it’s not polite. But by the time they are forced to resort to the FM, they have a real problem, Houston! 😉 Love Hengist’s colours. He’s really a candy unicorn, isn’t he?

  2. Yes, I know of the M version though DH. The F obviously stands for Flipping (or Flippin’) as per my title. Right?
    I will admit Hengest is not the most naturalistically coloured of unicorns – although who knows what a unicorn’s natural colour is 🙂 ? Really he is just an excuse to play with lots of lovely wools and silks.

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