Well, I went ahead and finished it. I finished the Modern Chullo from Hats & Scarves.
I was already hesitant about unraveling this since I was seriously one row from finishing the main part of the hat. (Ugh.)
But then people left some really nice comments on this project. And these crafters understood my troubles. I know this because the phrase "I feel your pain" popped up a few times. And because there were some stories to prove it, I tell you what: WIPs that were decades old. Projects that were worked 2 or 3 times with different hooks and yarns. So. much. ripping. back.
I really appreciated and enjoyed everyone's comments, but two in particular really got me. One was this:
Well, I like your "wrong" chulo. Most genuine chulos have lots of mistakes on them - they give them character.
And the other was this:
I was sitting next to my dad crocheting one day and ripping out a piece. He asked why I was taking so much out. I told him I made a mistake and had to fix it. He asked where it was and I showed him. Bless his soul he said to me that you know only you would see that or think that was a mistake. I looked at him funny and he explained the people who do not crochet or knit would not see any mistakes because they do not notice thing like that. Only you who do these beautiful things do because you are the creators. Geez I miss that man, he always made me feel so good about my work.
Well, duh. How could I forget that flaws can be memorable--in a good way? And how I could forget that most people are not going to be as critical of my work as I am? My husband, who could tell where I messed up on the hat but wasn't sure why I considered it ruined, had already pointed out that this looked like something his little brother would wear.
(Because I still hadn't made all of my Christmas presents. I KNOW, I KNOW!)
Between my husband's reminder that his brother would be enduring the third round of polar vortex nastiness bareheaded and everyone's sweet comments (but especially those two up there I just quoted), it was settled: I would finish the hat. Most of the work was already done, anyway!
So I did.
I crocheted the rest of the body. And then I added the ear flaps. And I worked a gray border around the bottom edge and added braids.
Man, I love the braids.
And if you look at the hat as a whole, it looks fine. Not amazing, and not exactly like the picture in the pattern book, but fine.
The pattern calls for a J hook and worsted weight yarn. I used Red Heart Super Savers and an I hook and still had a gauge to fit a pretty large adult male head. The ear flaps are huge, which I think is perfect. The top is pointy and goofy-looking. The colorwork is my first ever, and I think I'm a little proud of it.
And I think this is a great hat!