Sunday, January 30, 2011

Knitting Resolutions/Best Intentions and a Few FOs

Last year I vowed to knit more than I bought. It was clear by the time I finished with Stitches West Market, I was not going to achieve that. Since last February, I have catalogued my stash (at least the yarns and kits) with the idea that self-knowledge is power. I ended the year knitting up only slightly fewer projects than I bought, but I added more yarn to the stash than I knitted up. I also reduced the number of WIPs and UFOs, mostly by finishing them off.

This year, I have the following knitting goals:

  • Complete more knitted projects than I purchase. Based on last year, I don't think this should be a stretch goal.
  • Knit up (into finished projects) more balls/skeins of yarn than I purchase.
  • Do not buy or start any sweaters in linen stitch. Completing one already in progress would be more than okay.
  • Decrease the number of WIPs/UFOs by at least 10%. This could be major league difficult.
  • Continue to catalog my stash, WIPs, and finished projects. Photograph as many as is feasible.
Less than a month into the year, I'm happy to report that I'm not doing too badly. First off, the FOs (all since January 1st):

Trekking Knitalong January socks (mine are in Trekking Pro Natura)

Two more pair of socks (those on left are for Mother's Day gift for Mom and those on the right are my own toe-up design in Kroy FX)

Five scarves for Winter Special Olympics (I still have a small amount of Red Heart Super Saver if anyone wants it)

A Fair Isle tam knit in Fresco (Jared Flood design) which will be a present

And one more Barn Raiser Quilt square (this one is in leftover Tofutsie)

In comparison to my goals, I've completed 3 more knitted projects than I've bought (two of the pair of socks were from yarn purchased this year, and I don't count the BRQ square as a completed knitted project), I've decreased my WIPs by 2, and I've only bought 1 more ball of yarn than I've knit (I just couldn't resist buying the pattern and yarn to make sock monkeys -- I've wanted one since I was a little kid).

Not bad, but the January Rockin' Socks shipment is likely to arrive tomorrow and Stitches is coming up VERY soon -- so, back to knitting!

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Christmas wrap-up

I'm finally emerging from my post-holiday recovery.

Christmas went very well. We hosted dinner with 33 in attendance. The age range was 2 to somewhere in the mid to upper 80's. There was much craziness, including a White Elephant gift exchange in which Justin received a pair of collectible bears. That in itself would have been a poor choice for a teenage boy, but they also played music (Time of My Life from Dirty Dancing) and moved their mouths in time to the song.

Justin did not complain much when I regifted the bears to Goodwill.

Christmas knitting was kept to a manageable level this year. Amanda liked her alpaca cowl/scarf (the design was from Chicago's Loop, extra appropriate since she's attending school in Chicago). Mom was very happy with her hat and tried to take Dad's two hats plus mitts. Dad was happy that the mitts and at least one hat are way too big for Mom.

My mother-in-law was wearing a scarf I knit for my father-in-law a few years ago. I wonder how long before I start swiping Joe's clothes?

Kerry liked the cowl and capelet I knit her in her favorite colors (a mix of purple, burgundy, and brown -- bruise colors per Joe).

I was glad that several times a year I knit things "on spec". Sometimes I really want to try out a pattern or yarn, but don't need the item I knit and don't have a specific recipient in mind. The morning of the 26th, my parents and in-laws came over for breakfast. My brother, his girlfriend, and her mother were last minute additions. Since we had planned to give the older generation gifts that morning, I needed something quick for Robin, Karen, and Lurene. Robin got wine from our cabinet, Karen got a cowl, and Lurene got a keyhole scarf. All seem pleased.