My name’s Bev and I’m a ‘startalcoholic’. In the interests of full disclosure I want to state clearly that I’m not unhappy with this condition. As a matter of fact, I genuinely think that life is too short not to cast on that shiny new project or yarn or to delve into sewing a bag or hat or anything else that floats your boat.
When I first started knitting seriously, I thought that i was definitely an ‘end product’ type of knitter. I wanted to finish that sweater, cardigan, scarf or hat as I really really wanted to wear it. But then I met Ravelry. I am not saying that its been a bad influence, but it opened my eyes to thousands of patterns, yarns I’d never heard, designers who were using fascinating techniques. I’d thought I was hooked before but now I wanted to KNIT ALL THE THINGS NOW.
And so begin my odyssey of starting all the things and in that process I realised that I just liked to knit and not necessarily finish. I liked the rhythm, the wool fondling as I knitted and getting my head wrapped around new techniques. I also found that I view wool as the ultimate reusable creative material. I’ve lost count of the times I’ve completed a blanket, sweater or shawl and then thought ‘oh, you would be so much better as …’ so off I go to frog and reknit that yarn.
It’s lucky that poor old Drops Andes is a robust little number as it’s been an eleventh hour blanket, Jong and now it’s a Carbeth. I’m not promising that that will be its final resting place though.
Because you know, new patterns and techniques are always shiny.
Full disclosure: I currently have 15 WIPs on the needles. I’m not saying its only 15 but that’s all i can remember right now…
If you are interested to see the current state of play, then check out my pinterest board of Slow fashion makes 2020.
Do you know I thought I might feel a little bit embarrassed about the number, but in reality I’m sitting thinking I could probably cast on another 15 and still think that that was a reasonable amount.
That said at the start of this year I thought that I needed to strike a happy balance. While I’m not promising that I won’t cast on something new I am using 2020 as the year of finishing my WIPs.
2020 FOs so far…
This year I’ve already finished Cookie (it’s like wearing a big hug, and is getting loads of wear as I’m doing my best to self isolate at home. Cookie is from Rowan magazine 60 and the yarn was Rowan Brushed Fleece which the lovely Ian bought me as a pressie a few years ago. Like a lot of my clothes I went with the purple shade Hollow. It is a nice yarn to knit with and lovely and squishy to wear but it doesn’t half pill. So it will be getting some careful grooming to keep it looking good. Like all rowan patterns it was well written and I even got into a rhythm with the bobbles. Even though I was initially hampered by my inability to count to five consistently. Honestly if I’d know that maths was going to play such a big part in knitting I probably would have tried harder at it in school. But, and this is just a personal bug bear about patterns, it contained my two least favourite things – a small chart (make them bigger folks!) and the dreaded instruction …and at the same time which is half way down the page when I’ve been merrily knitting and not reading ahead.
(I know that is my own fault…)
Carbeth is mostly finished as well – just needs the buttons but as always I’m dithering over round or square wooden buttons from our homemade button range. I’ve knitted a few of Kate Davies patterns and totally love them. Interesting to knit and the end product is always attractive.
Another almost FO is the magnificent Persian Dreams blanket. This beauty was started right back in 2016 (it is officially my slowest make… but the Saxifrage socks are snapping at its heels!). After reading all the notes on Ravelry about the construction I kind of reversed the knitting – deciding to knit from the outside in rather that the inside out of the hexagon. Mainly because I wanted to pick up stitches and join each hexagon as I went along to save some grafting at the end. It worked a treat it did mean that it was an ‘at home’ knitting project as it was too bulky to transport. On the upside it made for a toasty lap warmer while knitting. I also changed the border to an applied i-cord, simply because I like knitting them.
It’s still at the almost FO stage as I’ve got a billion ends to weave in, have to figure out how to block it and decide if I want to have a sew-on backing. These dilemmas don’t look like they would delay the finishing of this blanket but trust me I’m not called scatty for no reason. I bounce between ‘block it, its easy” and ‘who needs blocking?!’ as well as ‘back it, be professional!’ and ‘if you back it, thats less knitting time?! I probably change my mind about 30 times a day, but eventually a course will be decided on. I’ll keep you updated…
While it was finished at the tail end of last year, I am going to include Affection in this round -up. This was another yarn which I love especially the chainette construction and the way it feels so fluffy. Originally I’d knitted this yarn as Mystery cardigan by Kim Hargreaves but wore it rarely as it felt a bit too floppy for that pattern. (The suggested yarn was Rowan felted tweed which would of course be a better fit – maybe these designers know a thing or two!) But it is suited to the style of the Affection sweater. Its is the recommended yarn (see note above about designers) I did worry that the yarn would be too dark (of course it’s purple – Guatemala) to really show off the cable pattern but I love it. Its cosy, just the right length for me and it is my current going out for special occasions wear. It is pairs so well with my favourite jewellery piece – waterfall necklace (another birthday pressie)
BTW if you wondering why purple, check out the fabulous ‘When I am an old woman’ poem by Jenny Joseph…
So what about you what are your knitting plans this year? Are you upping your knitting output during the lockdown? How many WIPs have you got? Please, please tell me, its not just me!?
If you are interested in any of my FOs or WIPs you can check them out on Ravelry or on my pinterest board.