I’ve decided to try something new this year — a little thing called planning. Remember when we talked about this? Most of the things I noted in that August 2013 post are still on my wish list! And I’ve been especially itchy lately because there are so many things I want to be knitting and so many yarns in my stash I want to be knitting with, and yet I keep casting on totally other things. Monday night I sat down and made a list of the sweaters I currently think A) I want to knit and B) will contribute to improving my wardrobe situation (as opposed to impromptu knitting projects making matters worse). They are as follows:
1.) I’m thinking about a worsted-weight version of the aforementioned Perkins Cove Pullover by Pam Allen, and am thinking it could be lovely and immensely useful in the navy blue Worsted Twist that my friends at Purl Soho sent me. Definitely a three-season, go-everywhere sweater for me.
2.) There’s a simple top-down sweater in my head that I really want in my closet and that I think would be perfect in Shibui’s Pebble (held double), which I’ve been dying to find the right project for. Would be a workhorse in one of the lighter greys — not sure which one yet. (Swatching with the Abyss I have handy.)
3.) I am absolutely knitting Jared Flood’s Channel cardigan, as noted before, and ordered a skein of O-Wool Balance (organic cotton and wool) to see if that might be the right year-round yarn for it. Thanks so much to Hagen and Vanessa for the recommendation. The skein arrived Monday eve and it’s marvelous — before I’ve even swatched with it, I ordered a sweater’s worth … and then some. If it doesn’t prove to be perfect for Channel (although I think it will), there’s no harm in having a pile of luscious charcoal yarn on hand, am I right?
4.) I also plan to finish my army-green Slade, which will be another wardrobe staple, but since it’s the warmest sweater on the list, knitted in Shibui Merino Alpaca, I’ll chip away at it between now and next winter. Also since it’s stockinette and worked in pieces, it’s easy to squeeze into gaps.
?.) And last but not least, I’m going to sleep-away camp not once but twice this year! (So excited — one trip with my whole family, plus I’m finally going to Squam!!) And I like the idea of knitting a little tee or tank of some sort for that and other purposes. I’m thinking maybe a scaled-down version of Bristol Ivy’s Kit Camisole, or something like the Purl Bee Cap Sleeve Lattice Top or the Riverine Pullover from last summer’s Pom Pom. But I’m probably better off sewing for this scenario, which I need and want to do anyway. So this one’s a maybe. (I’m also working on rounding up the latest great summer patterns since there’s been a flood of them recently. Here’s last year’s roundup if you missed it.)
Them’s the sweaters. There are nine months left in the year, and I have to estimate an average of six to nine weeks per sweater, since I’ve sworn off monogamy. One thing I learned from working on nothing but Trillium for five straight weeks (still ongoing) is that monogamy makes me batty — and a little resentful of whatever it is I’m being faithful to. Plus there are also these items on the list:
• Bob and I have settled on Fort for the first sweater I’ll knit him — I’ve just been waiting to find the right yarn. For him, it absolutely cannot be 100% wool, and ideally it will be washable, but I’m not wild about superwash yarns. After getting that Balance in the mail on Monday, though, we’re both thinking it might be just the ticket and have ordered two more colors to test for him. That’s one more sweater on the list.
• I’m still committed to making some kind of shawl for my mom … just as soon as I can figure out which one!
• There’s another pattern in my head that has to get out — a wrap that I’d love to publish through someone else. I’ve swatched this (right idea; wrong yarn), have extensive notes, and might enlist a sample knitter for it once I swatch with what I think will be the right yarn. But this is a must happen, one way or another. It’s just too good.
And I still want to crochet and weave and macramé and knit footie socks, and allow myself to squeeze in other satisfying little quick-finish projects along the way — to pick up new skills, work with some of the single-skein beauties in my stash, act on whatever new patterns come along that demand to be knitted, etc.
So that’s a whole lot of knitting for the year (nine months), especially if you’re me! I have to be realistic and flexible about this list: If I’m a slave to it, the things on it will feel like obligations instead of desires, which will take the fun out of it. But if I don’t at least write this all down and post it publicly, I’ll get to the end of 2014 with a bunch of random FOs and none of this accomplished. So there you have it.
I just finished up knitting The Channel Cardigan. It’s easily my favorite thing I’ve ever knitted and my favorite thing to wear. You will love making it. Here is a blog post with the pictures of my finished cardigan.
I loved seeing your finished Channel! Gorgeous. Any advice or notes for me?
Curious about changing the weight of yarn for the Perkins. Will you just figure your gauge with the worsted and use this to determine size to make?
Yeah, it’s top-down, so I’ll just figure out what I want my stitch count to be for the neck (cast on) and wing it from there.
That is such a good idea to organize what you want to make for the year. I tend to do this for the month at the beginning of every month, but sometimes I find myself not prepared with enough knitting for the month, then I try to add on stupid things that never get finished! Even if you have to edit and change your yearly list as you go along, this is such a good idea!
Be careful with O-Wool Balance, I recently knit a scarf using the same colourway (see here : http://www.ravelry.com/projects/clayton33/quay ), Charcoal, and my scarf came out striped. All 6 skeins were from the same dye-lot as well. Hopefully if you buy directly from the site they’ll take care in making sure the skeins match.
I ordered it from their site and there’s a note on there about treating like you would hand-dyed yarn (alternating skeins, etc). But thank you for reinforcing that message — I might have been tempted to ignore it!
I’ve been eyeing that Channel cardy too! Trying to think about yarns! Does one have to be certified in something to become a sample knitter for people?
Think your credential is just the skill level and quality of your knitting. But I don’t really know how people get into it.
Oh hooray! You are coming to Squam. I have been going for years- as a student, teacher and helper. It is the most magical place, and Elizabeth is just amazing. I hope to meet you. Will you have a table at the fair?
I hope so — I’m on the waiting list so cross your fingers for me! I’m looking forward to meeting you!
Side note: I’m so excited that you’re coming to Squam (spring, right?)! I love that event so freaking much.
Will you be there?
I will! Taking Gudrun’s shawl class and Cal’s tunic class. I hope your table for the fair comes through! And definitely try to meet Christine above – she was in my cabin one year and is a lovely human being. Hope to say hello to you in June!
I love how organized you are Karen, makes my Virgo list loving self so happy. The Channel Cardigan is on my list too, it’s a great looking knit.
I like the idea of a knit to-do list….and a bulletin board with pictures. After this horrible winter in the upper Midwest I realize how sick I am of my work horse sweaters. I loved knitting them, they kept me warm, but new colors and patterns are needed. I will finish the Acer that I started (twice) after your inspirational post!
Such a fun knit, that one.
The planning is a very good idea. I tend to get distracted by mitten patterns, even though I have a basket already full of mittens.
Good luck on your knitting list….mine also seem to get pushed back and sometimes forgotten. A visual planning board might be just what I need.
And when you are ready I would LOVE to be one of your test knitters!!!
You’re at the top of my list.
Purl Bee’s lattice cap sleeves is on the horizon for my light project during Easter Break!
I really need to organise my project list! I have so many projects already started and keep buying supplies for more projects! I am trying to set monthly goals to complete some of my ongoing projects but university keeps getting in the way at the moment!
A little late to the party, but I’m right there with you and the making of a list. I’ve got a list of “patterns to knit” and a list of “yarns to knit with.” Now it’s just trying to match up the two lists when possible!
Addressing the “yarns to knit with” problem is next on my list!
I just took some of my own advice and ordered a skein of Balance to swatch for Lila! Good luck with all your wonderful projects! v
Hi! I’m wondering where you found the men’s cardi on your pin board? Could you, by any chance, direct me to the pattern for that one?! I’ve been clicking through your links, but I can’t seem to find it…
That’s Slade — #4 in the list.
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