Saturday, 4 January 2014

Knitting Resolutions for 2014. . .

2013 was a good knitting year for me.  I did try out new skills, improved old ones,  and made some lovely things that have seen a lot of use. 

However, it was a lousy year for following resolutions.  Here were the ones I made at the beginning of January 2013. . .

1. Try Fair Isle and intarsia
2. Learn to crochet (I have a gorgeous book of Japanese designs that I would love to tackle)
3. Finish the two cardigans I am in the middle of
4. Knit a top-down sweater (I've done bottom up and a seamed one)
5. Knit more from my stash and buy less (well, at least until Woolfest)
6. Finally finish up my knitted log cabin quilt that has been languishing for two years (just need to seam it and add a border)
7. Finish my hexi-puff quilt (I've done about 70 hexi-puffs - probably need close to 500!)
8. Knit a pair of socks

. . . and I accomplished exactly one and a half and a smidgen.

I did knit a top-down cardigan which I really enjoyed doing and it looked great on my Mum.  I loved the pattern (Peasy by Heidi Kirrmaier) and think I might do another for myself. 

I did try Fair Isle (I am now officially hooked) but not intarsia. 

I also did try crochet but only got as far as learning the chain stitch (this was the smidgeon - I really need to take a course).  No socks. My two unfinished knitted quilts are languishing and to make matters even worse I started two more blankets that are also in various states of abandonment. And let's not even talk about buying less and using up more of my stash!  I failed abysmally ( I blame Woolfest, Yarndale, Harrogate, and boxing day sales in Toronto yarn shops) and hang my head and lack of willpower in shame.

However a new year brings a clean slate, new goals and lofty aspirations, and I am going to be a lot more realistic this time and give myself only 5 resolutions to deal with.

1. Knit only from my stash and buy NO YARN this year!  I have so many lovely, lovely skeins already and at least 8 bags with sweater quantities.  I just need to have them more readily on display as reminders.  This will be a tough one for me but I am looking forward to the challenge. The hardest bit will be going to shows which I still want to do as they are so much fun and totally inspiring but I can treat myself at them to subsidiary items such as buttons or needles instead.

2. I will be kind to myself about my unfinished blankets and just try to finish one this year, although I'm still adding to the pile of hexipuffs and mitred squares regularly.

3. I currently have four unfinished cardigans.  Finishing two of them this year would make me very happy.

4. I dream about having a few knitted Christmas gifts done by the end of June.

5. And finally,  I'd still like to learn new techniques such as intarsia and steeking. I'd also like to tackle my first pair of socks. And one of the little xmas gifts I bought for myself was this little kit, thanks to this great blog post by Knit British.  Aren't those colours gorgeous?

And there we go. With the exception of #1, they all seem completely manageable.  And in terms of appreciating the wool I already have, here are a few skeins that I brought back from Toronto. The city has some great knitting shops and I tried to visit them all.  Ewe Knit is the newest one in Mirvish Village.  Gorgeous, gorgeous yarns. I picked up some Fleece Artist skeins which come from Nova Scotia. The one with the sock pattern attached on the ball band (lovely bonus) was from Ewe Knit; the other came from Lettuce Knit, another great store in Kensington Market which alas I forgot to take a photo of.

Then it was down to Queen St. West for a visit to Romni Wools which has such a huge selection of everything, plus a great sale area in the basement.  Further along is the delightful and friendly Knit Cafe, famous for its creative window displays. I also like their blog.

Both had a good supply of the irresistible Madeline Tosh which is much cheaper in North America.  I got four skeins of sock yarn.

And one skein of lace weight - 950 yards of a really rich colourway called Whiskey Barrel.

I also picked up three big balls of Cascade Eco +.  There's great yardage on this and I should be able to do a fair isle jumper with this lot.

There - I really, really don't need to buy any more wool this year do I? Well, I have already resisted the Rowan sales at John Lewis so I'm off to a good start.


Alli said...

Some great finishes in 2013! As for stashing down, why not join us on the Pre-Processors board on Ravelry? We keep each other motivated with stashing down (and tracking yardage, if you're feeling competitive!). Happy New Year!

Blithe Spirit said...

Thanks - I will look up your ravelry group. I definitely need some motivation to keep on track!

Dayana Knits said...

Nice work resisting the JL sale! I resisted easily... living in Canada, ha. Best of luck with your resolutions, but good choice with the madtosh. ;)