Speed kills

Thanks for helping me do my homework from yesterday guys. It’s a big help. For those of you who asked if I were going to sort out the average speed or something like that – I’m not. I’m not trying to figure out what average is.

I gave it a lot of thought and here’s my thinking. Lets say I do the math and establish a number. (First of all, I try to avoid math whenever possible, so we’re already in conflict, but lets assume I did it anyway.) Now this number, let’s call it “X” is average. Now that we have established X, all of you are going to be one of three things. Either you knit faster than X and you’ll receive accolades for no reason other than quick fingers, or you will knit about the same as X and that will make you “average” (I personally don’t find “average” much of an inspiring compliment) or a lot of us are going to come out below that number. Those of us will be “below average”and I don’t want to set anyone up (especially me) to be “below average”. (I’m already short with bad hair. There’s only so much one woman can take.)

That said, the numbers are there for anyone who wants to work ’em for their own gratification.

What I am trying to work out is the scope of normal. You are all getting socks at the end of your knitting so I know you are normal. (If you weren’t normal sock knitters when you tried get socks you would be getting hats or mittens or small knitted cows.) How far across the range of knitting speed does normal go? Here are some interesting things.

1. If we were making a curve, then one end would be at 12 stitches per minute and the other end would fall at 144 stitches a minute. (Before you go lie in the road, I think that might be an error. The worlds fastest knitter pulls in about 85 stitches to the minute..so either we need a recount on that one or we need to get his knitter to the contest immediately where the full scope and glory of that speed can be known to all humankind.) If we exclude that one, the far end of normal was more like 75 stitches per minute. For the curious, I just timed myself and came in around 55 spm “cruising speed”.

Jinxsa made me laugh when she said her speed was “Negative 40 as I did the wrong row and yanked back too far.” This, sadly…is also in the range of normal.

2. Many, many knitters felt that there was/ would be a difference between their “cold” speed and the speed they got up to with warm hands. This is true, but cracks me up anyway.

3. Many knitters gave qualifiers, “on wooden dpns”, “with Opal yarn”, “with big cables”, “on 2.5mm needles”, “throwing” or “over lace”. I thought this was fascinating, because it told me all the stuff you guys think affect your speed. (Props to Lynn S for remembering another influence on speed “37 spm, fingering weight, metal DPNs, two glasses of wine” )

Intriguing, all of it. Thanks for helping me. I’ve been knitting away on the jacket, but didn’t get much done, since last night was Knit Night at Lettuce Knit and there were things were more interesting than the jacket.

LK is having a baby boom.


That’s Jen, Joyce and Mel, all due (rather incoveniently, from a knitting perspective) all in a row. (Photo shamelessly ripped of from Laura, the only organized soul who didn’t suffer camnesia that night) The LK clan got together a few weeks ago and knit them each a blanket…


in exchange for producing us pretty babies to play with. It was a big honking baby shower. These three babies are going to be the warmest in Toronto. Sweaters, socks….hats…Joyce is the first to hold up her end of the deal, providing us with the beautiful Zoë, just 10 days old and already at Knit Night.


She was gripping to all of us. We huddled around, watching her blink, curl her fingers, touched her thick hair. I think it’s safe to say Joyce outdid herself. Sigh. Hard to believe that someday she’s going to break curfew, date and arse and refuse to do her chores, eh?

Off to pack my knitting. Flight to Seattle in a couple of hours.