Sunday, March 25, 2018

More Finishing!

This whole Harry Potter Knit/Crochet House Cup thing is absolutely what I need. There are monthly deadlines for finishing things and I get to pick the things to finish. I just need to describe them in such a way that they fit the requirements for a particular class. When I finish, I earn points for my House and, occasionally, badges for my Ravelry profile.

For the first time, I also participated in the Ravellenic Games. This is a recurring event where projects are cast-on during the opening ceremonies of the Olympics and must be completed no later than the end of the closing ceremonies.  I was part of Team FibreSpace (my local yarn store). I finished a WIP (a hat) and also started and finished a toy sheep.

I have used my participation in HPKCHC and the Ravellenics to complete 11 projects in the first three months of this year. In all of 2017, I finished 11 projects. In 2016, I finished six projects.  I have also spun about 24 ounces of wool roving into yarn.
 

Today, I put the buttons on a cardigan that I started in November of 2016. I'm not sure I like it.
 The sleeves are a bit more snug than I would like. I have a sneaking suspicion that I may have knit the sleeves on a smaller size needle than the rest of the sweater. However, this may end up being a blessing in disguise. The body of the sweater (knit on the correct size needle) fits well, but is stretchy. Sufficiently stretchy that I am fairly confident that it will grow dramatically in length as I wear it. I'll wear it around the house a couple of times and see what happens before I wear it out in public or to work. I would be okay with ripping it out and either knitting a larger size on smaller needles or turning it into a saddle shoulder stockinette sweater using EZ's percentage system. The stockinette will definitely stretch less than garter stitch.

The next projects to power through: Galen's Magic Socks, a purple beaded lace shawl, and a gray pullover that I've been knitting and frogging repeatedly for 20 years. This time I'm going to just finish it and be done with it!





Sunday, January 21, 2018

2017 Roundup and 2018 Plans


Here's the annual look back at the previous year.


According to Ravelry, I finished 11 projects in 2017, including a pair of socks that I started at least 17 years ago. This is up from a total of 6 finished projects in 2016. Altogether, I finished four pairs of socks, two scarves/shawls, two hats, a pair of baby booties, an adult-sized sweater, and a pair of felted slippers that didn't fit at all well. That's approximately 5451 yards of knitting that was completed.
 



I also got in a good bit of spinning this year, working my way through some natural merino roving that's been aging in my stash for about 20 years and also some lovely forest green superwash. These spinning projects were partly motivated by Tour de Fleece and also the Harry Potter Knit/Crochet Cup class assignments. With my e-spinner, it's fairly easy to rack up significant spun yardage while binge watching shows on Netflix or on the DVR. The green roving ended up a light fingering weight yarn. I have another 8 ounces of the roving left to spin.



Overall,  Ravelry indicates that I have completed more project yardage than I purchased. However, there are some project-specific purchases missing and it appears that Ravelry removes the yarn currently in WsIP from the stash queue when a project starts. My total yarn purchases were approximately 9825 yards. One of these purchases was souvenir yarn in Paris. which will be turned into either a shawl or a sweater (with an additional purchase of a contrasting color of the same yarn). Another purchase was some Eco+ that was on such deep discount that I felt obligated to pick up a sweater quantity to make Aidez. The other purchases were made specifically for projects--baby sweaters and shawls. One of the shawls isn't going to end up happening. The pattern was too full of errors and I'll use the lovely yarn in a different shawl project.

As I mentioned, last year I was interested in trying brioche knitting. I didn't end up starting any brioche projects and never even worked up a brioche swatch. I remain interested in brioche and still have a couple of potential projects ready to go. I did, however, do some beaded knitting this year, starting (and finishing) a beaded sock pattern and starting a beaded lace shawl as part of a KAL.  I still am working on the shawl and definitely enjoy working on it.

It was useful to re-order my project queue to reflect  the parts of my stash that are currently living with me. I continued to use socks as travel knitting to keep my hands occupied while on flights. This was moderately successful as most of the flights are overnight and the overhead lights are often not aligned to shine in the right spot. Nonetheless, I'll keep trying in 2018 to knit on planes. Working consistently on more complicated or larger projects at home contributed significantly to getting 11 projects finished this year. 

For 2018 goals, I want to finish some of the adult-sized sweaters and other projects that I have started over the past decade. This will require finally getting my gauge sorted out. Perhaps if I focus on a single project at a time, I won't have so much trouble with gauge consistency and also with making good progress. Splitting my time between a multitude of projects generally results in little progress on any of them and plenty of drive to start something else new. Oddly enough, this very same issue comes up in other areas of life. I've got ten active WsIP carrying over from 2017, so hopefully the focus on a single project at a time can help get these knocked out this year! I am aiming to minimize yarn purchases again this year, with the possible exception of spending gift certificates, obtaining spectacular souvenir yarn, or making project-specific purchases to be completed in 2018.