News Item

Toronto, Canada– Sources are reporting that a remarkable outbreak of "Startitis" has been identified in a Toronto knitters home.

Thus far, the disease appears to be limited to this one knitting environment, but authorities report that the infected crafter appears to be "absolutely reckless" in her attempts to spread it.Β  Despite the shocking disorganization and lack of focus the disease inflicts on knitters who contract it, patient zero has boldly claimed that she "doesn’t care" about the consequences to other knitters she may infect. Despite repeated pleas for her to "rein it in" and "stop talking about mittens" the knitter in question is still emailing links of patterns to other knitters, offering them yarn, and sending notices regarding yarn sales to other victims.Β 

There is some indication that patient zero was showing signs of the illness last week when she texted her sister in law about an alpaca yarn sale at a nearby shop, and suggested that it was more than reasonable for her to go in and buy twenty or thirty skeins, despite clear evidence that Kelly her sister-in-law would have little ability to use same in a lifetime.

Symptoms include: Unpacking the yarn stash into the kitchen and claiming that it’s "part of a plan", stacking a considerable number ofΒ  knitting books in the bathroom and calling it "research" and casting on two pairs of mittens in as many hours, winding at least seventeen skeins of yarn into balls and insisting that their use was imminent – all while beginning a two pairs of socks, a hat, a blanket and even a new sweater, despite two being underway at present. The subject is also showing limited ability to resist small scarf patterns, and is showing some worrying signs of a break with reality, as she was overheard telling a knitting friend that she has "no 4mm needles" when it is well known that there are multiple pairs in her possession. (A witness has postulated that the knitter was misunderstood, and that she was not suggesting that she didn’t have the needles, but that they were all presently in use, which is equally disturbing.)

She can be identified by the alarming amount of yarn that has recently been released from confinement in the stash, the stack of patterns, yarn and needles on every surface of the house, as well as the multitude of knitting projects spilling from her project bag – along with her cheerful but delusional insistence that they will all be finished by Friday.

Sources close to the victim indicated that she appeared to be holding her own against the infection until this last weekend, when a series of incidents appear to have catapulted her into full blown infection.Β  (One family member said "I don’t know what TNNA is, but the tweets and blog posts about how much yarn was there really didn’t help her.")

As Startitis is believed to be viral, no treatment is required, but to avoid spreading the disease, the knitter should be approached with caution until the outbreak resolves.

343 thoughts on “News Item

  1. Looks like there have been multiple reports of an outbreak of “Startitis” in NY as well! Must have spread by NY natives returning from holidaying in Toronto.

  2. So the infection has finally reached Canada, has it? The epidemic started down here in southeastern Pennsylvania shortly before Christmas, and has proven to be the result of an uncommonly virulent strain of the virus.

  3. I beleive startitis is a reaction from the stress induced by Christmas knitting. Ah, the freedom to knit what one wishes to at the moment rather that what one should and as Christmas rapidly approaches what one must!

  4. I have caught a related virus called ‘survived-holiday-knitting-itis’ and it has remarkably similar symptoms…

  5. Authorities are uninformed; startitis is not confined to a limited outbreak, it is a silent epidemic that has been raging for years. Treatment is hampered by the stigma and shame attached to the condition. We must encourage acceptance and understanding for this condition such that the afflicted can seek to live healthy happy lives with their startitis.

  6. At least I’m in good company with those bloody mitten patterns that somehow leaped into my email inbox when I don’t even *do* colorwork knitting!
    The truly sad thing? It’s by a Canadian designer, foisted upon us by a Canadian knitter…and I’m knitting the gnome mittens down here in the US for a friend of mine in – wait for it – Canada.

  7. I think the theory that it is a release from the confinement of Christmas knitting bears investigation. I also think you can catch this infection at the SpillyJane site…I know I have a craving for Swedish Fish. And I have purchased a hippo to further spread the infection…
    Now, if you will excuse me, I have to go and check my knitting needles to make sure I have the right size…

  8. Hahahaha, I have been startitis enabling the last few days as well! With the broken wrist, my knitting is down to a crawl…. so I’m encouraging other knitters and living vicariously until the cast is off and I can indulge my own startitis. I might still infect others after the cast is off… it’s a heady feeling.

  9. And I thought I was the only one. A trip to two LYS this weekend resulted in the appearance of another spindle, three sets of DPN, sock yarn (I’m not saying how much) and books and merino top to spin into yet more sock yarn. Latest symptoms are the casting on of two sock patterns, being 9 days into 2010’s advent calendar scarf, and searching for the size 0 needles so that another pattern can be cast on for. Apparently the North American wind patterns have spread the infection to Vermont as well.

  10. I don’t know about the knitters of Maryland but Startitist has definitely hit the crocheters! πŸ˜‰

  11. It has even infected my 16-year old daughter who has previously ridiculed the stash that has taken over my guest bedroom. I had a hard time getting her out of the lys yesterday – and she said that there is nothing wrong with three projects at a time. Now if I can just move her beyond garter stich scarves.

  12. It’s hit Minnesota too! I’m really hoping finishitis goes viral sometime soon! I seem to have developed an immunity to it.

  13. Well, if it is a virus, I don’t want the cure. I’m never as happy as when I’m surrounded by my stash, books and projects galore. I hope I never recover!

  14. Similar thing happened in Trois-Rivièrs, Qc. A few of us went on an expedition downtown Montreal, and came back with kilos of yarns, books, needles and ideas. I now have a different knitting project started in about each room of the house, so I can knit anytime I have a minute free.
    My mom has another symptom; when shown one of the hat I started, she jumped on it and knitted several rows of it – she is dangerous.

  15. Startitis is indeed a dangerous virus, but the patient you described is only one of many already infected. The illness seems to be exacerbated by cold outside weather and participation in knitting/crocheting websites and blogs, such as Ravelry and Yarn Harlot. To the surprise of many at the CDC, patients seem to be happy and thrilled to infect others with their “germs.”

  16. Ah. So that’s where I got it. I was wondering. It seems to be infecting the Midwest US also….
    Yarn? I see no yarn.

  17. It appears the outbreak has spread to the southeastern United States, where it is reported that an infected knitter in North Carolina has started three separate knitting projects and two spinning projects while home from work due to snow. Her husband has barricaded himself in the guest bedroom, due to the wool tickling his nose when he tried to take a nap on the couch.

  18. Patient Zero (aka YH) failed to mention that the emergency rescue team can identify her house by the clusters of squirrels peering into the windows and searching for a way in. It’s been a very cold winter and the temptation unleashed by Patient Zero, both to the squirrels and the “virtual squirrels” (aka “The Blog”), is enormous.

  19. vermont knitter in portland oregon reports sudden outbreak of needless pattern book purchases along with “just a couple” of skeins (and a new carryon for the flight home)

  20. I can clearly state that the virus is on the west coast also. I have 5 projects on the needles and 2 more on the floor waiting for me to look for the needles. It’s it glorious!

  21. Oh dear. It’s a bit of a problem here in the Poconos. Our LYS is treating it by hosting a work-in-progress event, now through the end of March. Hopefully things will die down by then πŸ˜‰

  22. The ‘Startitis’ has origins on Long Island as well. Patient zero in this case has started no less than 3 wedding shawls (with beads) for the same person in search of the ‘perfect shawl’. She also has a hat, the first of a pair of Chimera mitts, two scarves, and another two shawls on the needles. She also has had to purchase needles for all these project as she ‘has no needles’ either.
    Is there a cure for this?

  23. I’d be happy to send patient zero my address if she needs to send out more yarn and patterns! :)I agree with the poster who is hoping to catch finish-itis. I hope that breaks out in Louisiana soon.

  24. It’s called Delusional Knitting, thinking you can finish it all in a short period of time. I think it’s also viral, and separate and equally as dangerous as Startitis.
    Good luck. My Delusional Knitting case lasted about two month and the startitis is still going strong.

  25. I’ve heard tales that Startitis must be stopped in it’s very early stages. I believe it requires one to leave their pocketbooks at home, regardless of the temptation to do so otherwise.
    Being broke works for me, but your mileage may vary.

  26. If having Staritis is wrong, than this knitter doesn’t want, nor need, to be right (but you didn’t hear that from me πŸ˜‰ !

  27. The virus has even made it into western Montana, in spite of cold weather (because of?) and icy roads. Symptoms are similar to those in other parts of the hemisphere: three projects on needles, two others finished in the last week, relentless searching through the stash for more projects to start, and to cap it all off, signing up for RSC again – although none of last year’s kits have made it to the needles yet! Maybe that’s where to start…
    Help me, I fear there is no cure ever.

  28. I used to be a monogamous knitter. Then I started reading your blog. Now I have 4 sweaters and 2 pairs of socks in progress. It’s all your fault. I hope you’re proud of yourself.

  29. Pretty sure you and I are tapped into the same wave length. Just had a sale at my LYS and I clearly blacked out at some point because I have six balls of sparkly lace kid silk, along with 1440 yards of lace merino to make a tunic with, not to mention enough yarn to make 7 more sweaters……I had a plan then I got high on wool fumes…

  30. Don’t doctors prescribe rest until over infection? I say bed rest with plenty of cuppas is in order.

  31. This seems like a very widespread outbreak, with few able to resist the virus. Can I call in sick to work tomorrow?
    Hi Boss — I have “startitis” and the only way to cure it is to stay home and knit. As there is no cure, the virus may take a while to leave my system because I need to finish at least 3 projects (the big ones) before I can come back to work.

  32. So that’s where I got it from. It has spread from Toronto down to Maryland, because last night I took out 5 books to find a new aran sweater to knit since I only had 1 already on the needles. (one aran, that is. I have 3 more sweaters on the needles, along with so many socks I can’t count them. I had to buy a new set of sock needles last week. And I am all out of circular needles in sizes for Starmore sweaters.)
    I am considering taking a day or more off work to organize my life, or actually knit for 8 hours straight.

  33. This is so reassuring! I only have a mild case (so far) then. One enormous aran sweater with lots of cables for my husband, another sweater for me, and one pair of socks all on the needles – so it’s perfectly OK that I start another pair of socks and maybe a scarf – I’ll need plenty of knitting when going to Vogue Kinitting in NYC.

  34. Be careful, unless you wish to allow start-itis to morph into finish-but-screw-it-up-itis. I have a bad case of that. I was feeling virtuous about having no desire to start anything new until I finished a half dozen or so projects. Most have them are off the needles but look like someone who knows nothing about knitting did the last portion of the project – deep V-neck sweaters that were supposed to be gorgeous coming off the needles with necks too tight for a newborn, mittens that would fit an elephants foot and hats that – well, you just don’t want to know.
    Just keep knitting and starting new things but proceed very carefully should you decide to cast anything off. If the first project across the finish line comes off the needles in a bad way, return to starting new projects for at least 6 weeks until all chances of screw-it-up-itis are past.

  35. It must be a New Year kind of thing. I’m attending Vogue Knitting Live so I have to do my homework, then work on my shawl, then finish a pair of socks, then rip out part of a sweater’s sleeve because I switched to 4 dpns when the 5 16″ circ became to big and realized they were 4’s when I found the 5’s I thought I was using. I’ve also got 2 second socks to do. Meanwhile, I’m looking for 2 new sock patterns to use the yarn I found when I was looking for yarn for my homework and I’ve got 3 sweaters all kitted up and ready to start. I’m beginning to think I’ll just keep working on everything and not finish anything! At least we’re all in good company.

  36. Unfortunately, reports are coming in that the outbreak has spread to Northern California. All citizens should be warned and prepared.

  37. Gee, this sounds familiar! In some homes, I’ve noticed several boxes of UFO’s from prior infections.

  38. And there is no herd immunity, as all knitters have refused to be poked with their needles, not on Facebook nor anywhere else.

  39. It’s certainly viral and spreading– here in Northern Michigan, I’ve got 2 pairs of socks, a sweater, and a lace shawl started in the last 3 days. I thought I was going crazy, but now realize it’s just the letdown from having to finish things by Christmas… and finishing them, then having nothing to knit.

  40. Apparently I have a predisposition to startitis which I do not view as a disease! Aren’t we all individuals – LOL – it is my “design feature” and quite necessary to my well being!

  41. It’s here in Maryland USA as well. Over the weekend I ordered about 8 different colors of yarn to do some colorwork mittens, then last night I ordered knit.sock.love with the intention of knitting all 19 pairs in the book.

  42. ITs wildly infectious, having spread to the Pacific NW due to victim zero recent travails, I mean travels. Word has surfaced that a large outbreak has been forecasted in August when others known to be carriers will be coming into the PAcific NW. The media is being notified and pretective measures are indicated
    Lana

  43. Adding to the long history of carriers such as “Typhoid Mary,” we have long had “Mitten Steph.” It is only now that the media have identified the source of the contagion.

  44. Well, it was hard to tell while holiday knitting was in progress, but I think I may have the long-term version (kinda like shingles…only with fiber:)). I can’t even find all the projects I started over the last 4 months, and some were for me!

  45. The virus has definitely hit Michigan. Between the mitts, two pairs of socks, and lacy scarf, all started in the last week, I’ve not only taken over my apartment, but gotten my boyfriend and cat in on balling the skeins of yarn for me….

  46. You know, as socially responsible knitters, we really should try to avoid infecting others. I shall knit a condom. Worsted weight, cast on 88 stitches. k2p2 until desired lenghth and decrease.

  47. It’s the SpillyJane virus!! I caught it this morning and promptly purchased the beer mug mitten pattern. I will be looking for yarn to cast on as soon as I get home. And wonder of wonders, I have knit night this evening!!

  48. So glad to find that I’m not suffering alone. However,you just might have to get one of those maps that you stick the pins into so you can track the outbreak and spread of the malady!

  49. I was OK until I discovered that SpillyJane has FLAMINGO mittens. I now am afraid to count the number of works-in-progress I have…

  50. It’s spread to Montreal as well – so far, working on 2 pairs of socks and 2 shawls, as well as studying 3 (new) knitting books and my personal sock stash spreadsheet. And I scrupulously stayed away from my LYS this weekend in order to avoid being infected, but to no avail. Well, there’s always next year….

  51. It has already struck out here in BC. Why don’t they report startitis breakouts on the weather network? I’d wager it has more significant financial impact than the flu!

  52. The North Atlanta suburbs are also victims, however, on the bright side we are snowed in (you have to live in the South and experience snow to understand) so at least there is a chance of completing something.

  53. Use caution when entering Edmonton, Alberta or any of the Prairie Provinces.
    Number of infected knitters greatly increased due to winter storm over weekend, now storm has passed potential for wide spread release.

  54. How dare you give me this disease! And…I’m a QUILTER to boot! not a knitter! But alas….the yarn is starting to pile up here as well…i’ve only got 1 project in the works, though the yarn is panting to be balled up and used any minute now!

  55. Haven’t yet finished my husband’s Christmas sweater (the darn thing is just so boring); started a pair of socks with yarn I bought while on a trip to Asheville, N.C. even though I have two scarves, and a shawl waiting to be finished – and, just yesterday decided to try my hand at some color-work on a pair of fingerless gloves. Guess I’ve got it too!

  56. To follow Rob’s idea, I suggest “Startitis Stephanie” (a la Typhoid Mary). I think it has a nice ring to it… πŸ˜‰

  57. Here in NJ, several factors converged to cause a very expensive case of startitis: A slumber party in a snow storm, attended by 13 girls age 11 to 13 made it impossible to sleep and an incredibly exciting Jets-Colts game, which ended after 11 pm got the adreniline going. The resulting insomnia combined with patient zero’s contagious discussion of mittens led to much midnight buying online at WEBS (so much yarn, so many colors!) which, it must be mentioned, patient NJ-1 never would have even known about, were it not for Patient 0. (Thanks for the germs!)

  58. Its hit here in Michigan too!! I left the dh waiting while I did a quick run through of the yarn in a lys…came out with two skeins of sock yarn because I couldn’t find a skein I bought not too long ago and I need a new pair of socks…not counting the two other pair I have on needles …I know he thinks I need help…

  59. Love it! Thanks for the smile….okay big goofy grin on a stressful day. I feel an impending startitis coming on – had actually succummbed but found the sweater pattern in question is seriously screwed up & frogged that one. Am looking at mittens as well.

  60. Yes, it’s in Maryland, too. I’m feverish with it….and why doesn’t my doc prescribe more wool and dpns when I ask for them?????

  61. So THAT’s why after your post about SpillyJane I have this crazy notion that I TOO can knit a pair of those adorable mittens despite the fact I have yet to finish a project on needles smaller than size 5 AND that I have never attempted any type of color work outside of basic stripes. It would also explain the 3 hours I spend yesterday spilling over every pattern book, knitting magazine, and searching through the Ravelry archives in search of a more “suitable” project in attempt to take my mind off the adorableness of said mittens.
    Glad to know I’m not alone in my newly acquired infection. Best put on some chicken soup…this could be a long recovery process!

  62. It appears to have hopped across the lake and into mid Michigan…I may have recently left my lys with multiple skeins of sock yarn (dream in color to be exact) and my latvian mittens and selbuvotter books have been seen lying about…

  63. Again, I find myself far superior to the others reading this blog and wonder at your weaknesses. I, being perfectly in tune with the universe, have not succumbed to startitis. I am, however, hoping to get home to hide the box that I expect to be delivered from LittleKnits.com before my husband sees it.
    I am NOT hoarding yarn, I am NOT hoarding yarn, I am NOT hoarding yarn.

  64. I’ve been staving off this virus with a home remedy I call “Guilt”. I have a couple of projects that are intended as gifts (one for two Christmases ago, one for the Christmas just past), and so by taking a dose of “Guilt” every time I think of casting on something new, I’ve managed not to catch it. I fear, however, that the moment I finish even one of these gift projects, I will indeed lose my resistance and catch the virus and catch it good!

  65. Pretty sure the virus has spread to Indiana! I would not be surprised if I was forced to be quarantined at my lys tomorrow for some intense therapy/treatment.

  66. the virus has established a foothold down here in the Arizona deserts of southwest US.
    The virus has mutated and is not only affecting knitting projects, but multiple weaving projects have been started at my house in the last week.
    Each loom has sprouted a warp and weaving is sporadic – interspersed with the knitting of hand warmers and large lace shawls.

  67. The only cure is to do that therapy where you do the behaviour to excess in the hopes you lose the taste for it.
    My advice: Cast on as much as possible. Do not get involved in any one project. If you become too enthusiastic about finishing something, set it aside and cast on something else.
    I am not a doctor, but I play one on the internet – solely for my own amusement…

  68. It is an epidemic, there’s no stopping it. Apparently someone exposed to patient zero crossed the Detroit River and spread the virus through southeastern Michigan. The recent and ongoing spell of frigid weather has kept the knitters inside and the germs have spread among them. Probably no let up in the contagion until May or so.

  69. I’ve got a raging case here in Illinois – and I can verify that it clearly spreads by online contact as well. I refuse to specify how many projects I have OTN, and will not confirm or deny that I am choosing a hat pattern that I may or may not CO any time soon…. πŸ˜‰
    And I am awaiting approx. 8 more skeins in this month’s mail….

  70. A mutation of the virus, known as ‘Stashitis’ has reached Kentucky. Symptoms include as unreasonable urge to procure yarn, fiber, and spinning paraphernalia. The virulence of Stashitis is currently unknown.

  71. What yarn shop has a sale on alpaca – I have patterns that need knitting! I’m checking the websites but don’t see any advertised sales in TO.

  72. Startitis is definitely an incurably, contagious disease – just go with the flow πŸ™‚ I can’t even count how many UFO’s are in my house!!

  73. I emailed a friend about this very situation this morning! I think I’m now glad I’m part of a widespread outbreak rather than just an isolated case of knitterly ADD. So, Colorado has been hit as well, in case you’re tracking infected locations.

  74. I think this may be the first documented case of a virus being spread from computer to humans. It has hit here in Los Angeles as well.

  75. Apparently this may be the first non-software virus to be spread via twitter and blog postings! The disease is evident in Salmon, Idaho also….. where mittens, hats, miniature tree skirts (for Valentine’s Day no less!) have all been begun. Pleas for copies of patterns to be scanned an emailed from as far away as Michigan have been sent!
    Thank heaven for a cleaning lady showing up at the house or the virus may have caused children to be sent to school in dirty clothes and vacuuming to be completely abandoned!

  76. P.S. Oddly enough there has been an outbreak of finishitis accompanying the startitis…. but how long it can last only a fool would try to guess…..

  77. well this explains a lot. I am infected and since I am already infected I might as well go start some socks or mittens or something. I thought perhaps somehow I had hallucinated and Christmas hadn’t happened yet since I still have so much knitting to do. But no. I can’t help myself.

  78. I kind of wish I hadn’t just destashed all the yarn I clearly was never going to use… because now I have very little yarn on hand and urrrrgggh. Waiting on two sweaters’ of yarn (both on order) so there’s little point in running out and buying, say, a skein of sock yarn just so I can start something new instead of finishing the projects I have on hand.

  79. Not only do I have startitis…I also seem to be infected with dontfinishoffist…finished Christmas lace scarfs that only need to be grafted and blocked.

  80. The virus reached the west coast of Canada (Vancouver) early last week. Unfortunately there is a cold snap (for us) in place and there are no hats, mittens, or scarves in a wearable state in my house. Even more horrifying, my LYS has a belated boxing week sale on, so I suspect that things are going to get ugly…

  81. Hit in Wisconsin. I’ve been reading you for a long time but last week when you shared spillyjane’s gorgeous mittens I actually said to my husband, “I need to go to the yarn shop to take the edge off.” I follow-up that up with a FaceBook post admitting that I have a Ravelry problem. This disease is serious.

  82. But with such a wonderful disease, why would I want to proceed with caution?
    Besides, I finished a sweater and am on a second sock, so how could it hurt that I swatched for a sweater and am looking at a second one online?

  83. Well startitis has spread to Wisconsin, I have recently picked up 20 skeins of Amazing from Lion Brand and 7 more Jiffy from said Lion Brand , looking to make the afghan on the cover of cata logue , first must finish poncho, have too many projects wanting to be started,. Looks like I must stock up on knitting yummies.

  84. I am trying not to get this as I am focused on finishing my last project from 2010…but the other needles are calling out very loudly!

  85. A virulent strain hit Central Michigan about a week ago. The victim has been seen mumbling about “more needles” in Jo-Ann’s. Rumor has it she has sole possession of 4 sets of interchangeables.

  86. My startitis needs antibodics. Apparently, I am not unable to join in the round without twisting. After trying to start the same sweater 4 times, I have put it in timeout. Next I decided to try another project that was also in knit the round and had another 3 attempts before I got that going (I should have started a flat knitting project!)

  87. Viral indeed! From reading the comments, it appears this virus has spread all across the North American Continent and may have been carried overseas as well. I know it’s struck in NH πŸ™‚

  88. It’s in Texas too! A sweater, a vest, a tank top, and 3 pair of socks. Fearing mittens are not too far behind.

  89. Its that time of year again, when this virus hits- the post Christmas lull just begs this infection to run rife- even new victims are caught up in it and those will a long time sensitivity sucumb just as easy it seems!! ‘I blame the yarn shops personally with their lack of thought and preparation by discounting yarn- its endemic in Cheshire uk- my LYS was over flowing at the weekend with victims’ one startled local resident today complained. Northwich Guardian Monday 10th Jan.

  90. Do symptoms include stomach pain from too much junk food (caused by lack of time to cook or eat) and finger ache from holding onto needles for long stretches, also hearing problems (detected by family members who cannot get the attention of the infected knitter)?

  91. Oh, yeah, it’s hit Texas, too, for sure. Except I have the crochet strain. Exact same symptoms, though.

  92. So THAT’s what’s been wrong with me ever since I learned to knit!
    Despite resolving to finish up projects until they’re all done before starting any more projects (except for Christmas presents which still aren’t completely finished), I cast on for a pair of socks yesterday. And then thought I should really make a vest with the yarn instead (or maybe in addition to–there’s a lot of yarn!).

  93. thought it was a post-holiday funk. didn’t know it was viral. good to know I can’t even help it. i’m sick. lol

  94. It’s bad in the UK….my kids are worried about me….I panicked when i got to the dentist today because I had forgotten my knitting and didn’t feel right until I got home. I also discovered ‘The Loopy Ewe’ today…..mmmmmm

  95. My apologies, this strain appears to have started in the Philadelphia area and spread northward. I promised myself on New Years Eve that I would/could/shall not begin ANY new projects until the UFOs were done, down to the very last one. This was a daunting number to begin with, but I have faith. However, that also meant I had to start as many UFOs as possible on December 31st. So far none finished, but I do a lot of smiling like I’ve been drinking too much.
    If you need to, blame it on me. I’m good for it. Here’s to hoping this is one disease they never cure. πŸ™‚

  96. I’ve got it bad, and I haven’t even finished making my Christmas presents! I’m doomed!

  97. I have it too!
    I think it’s a January thing. Now that the gift knitting is done we’re free to run wild with other knitting. Also, Christmas knitting binges lead us to develop a wildly inaccurate perception of the volume of knitting we can get done in small amounts of time.

  98. Well, it has made its way down South, where mittenitis is upon us…but we usually don’t WEAR mittens in the South…

  99. I have also contracted startitis, and I fully blame/credit/thank you. I recently joined the Fans of the Yarn Harlot group on Ravelry and noticed a discussion entitled something like, “How did you find the YH?” which got me thinking that I’ve been reading you blog for at least 5 years, but when did I start? So I went to your archives and have been systematically working my way forward, from the beginning, rereading your posts. This resulted in my saying, “Oh! Must make that!” and “Socks!! I should knit more socks!!”
    So now I have a self-imposed sock club (for which I actually had to buy sock yarn, having been on a highly successful yarn diet last year), eight newly-started projects and 20lbs of fibre of all sorts, mostly undyed, sitting in my studio daring me to make something good of it.
    I’m in serious trouble.

  100. “Knit on, with confidence and hope, through all crises!” EZ This crisis will pass. It always does for me!

  101. Contagion or source of contagion is the question. It is in full swing on the Big Island with a sweater, two pairs of mittens one pair of socks and a hat begun in one home. Patterns have also spread to the back seat of the car.

  102. I kept myself from starting a new project when I finished my last one, last week, because I was moving. I knew I wouldn’t make time to pack, if I had a project going.
    Now, I’ve moved, along with all my needles and books, and about one third of my stash. I’m too stressed to even choose a project to start.
    Maybe a garter stitch scarf is the answer.

  103. Help!!!! The virus has spread south of the border into central NY.
    I hope the Disease Control Center in Atlanta doesn’t get involved. arghhhh.
    I am doing my best to complete two sleeves but some felted clogs are getting in the way, also two pairs of socks and a hat.

  104. LOL – Finished by Friday?
    I knew it was coming for you soon….. It was only a matter of time. Don’t worry – we all have those “stacks of research” around our homes as well. πŸ˜€

  105. The Southern Oregon Coast has it as well. I’ve got shawls, a vest, several pairs of socks, and a scarf on the needles, and I’m trying to cast on a hat. Recently finished projects include another scarf, another hat, and yet another scarf, all started before the above first mentioned were finished. Heck, they still aren’t finished!

  106. Are you sure it started in Toronto? I’m pretty sure it started in Arkansas because I have it. This is bad, because I am (was) a single project gal.

  107. This disease is so viral that it can be spread merely by reading an article or blog post about it online.
    And it is a delightful disease; who cares that I don’t know when I’ll have time to finish the 5 projects I’m currently knitting?

  108. It hit really hard in California! Don’t know if we can ever get over this. What’s next ~ finishitis ~
    this is going to take some time to get over!

  109. So that’s the explanation! It isn’t just avoiding current WIP, it’s an official disease and one is helpless to break its grip.
    This just in: as of last night, a daughter who previously had attempted (and abandoned) only 2 projects over several years announced she has committed to knitting 5 scarves this year and giving them away! Instead of battling this further spread of the disease, the mother of the novice knitter offered to help with any problems encountered, thus ensuring the spread of startitis.

  110. It could’ve spread to Minnesota from Toronto, but I fear a separate but equally strong strain of the Startitus Virus has begun in Minneapolis: The beginning of mittens, cowl, hat, socks and shawl all have needles in them . . and spread among 3-4 rooms of my house. I swear I don’t know how that happened.

  111. I have some symptoms (unrealistic ideas about things being finished by Friday, for example) but haven’t cast anything new on in a while. This doesn’t mean, however, that I don’t have needles and yarn and patterns all over the house. Is this merely a first stage of the disease, or is there a bit of immunity, due to past bouts?

  112. Arrgh, I have a computer virus. I read things on the computer and my hands get infected. My fingers sign up for yarn clubs that my brain has said no to – “We are on a diet” says the big brain boss, but the fingers are sneaky, and twitchy, and sly.
    Cure is Startitis – just have to keep them busy, long tail cast on is best, or things with 5 dpns, or with cable needles … but
    must
    keep
    them
    away
    from
    keyboard
    help ……. please

  113. We have it here too! My daughter emailed me that her “needles were itching” to start a new project despite the five others on the go…is “needle rash” one of the symptoms?

  114. I am just recovering from a bout that started a couple of weeks before Christmas. Two snow days here and I’ve been able to get it under control and actually finish something.
    But I’m not sure I’m cured. I keep thinking about those spillyjane beer mittens, and I have most of those Palette colors.

  115. It’s incurable too…save yourselves! πŸ™‚
    p.s. mine was brought on by the fact that the Knitpicks AND Lionbrand catalogs showed up in the post on the same day. Niiiice. πŸ™‚

  116. You’re hilarious. I volunteered to test knit because I have “nothing on the needles”… except a lace weight cardigan, a slipper, another sweater, a blanket that has to be pieced together, and tweeks to my first design. But you know, nothing on the needles….

  117. I knew there had to be someone to blame for the intense desire I’ve been unsuccessfully avoiding to start new projects!

  118. I am in quarantine. Bravely avoided a big yarn sale and a new LYS open house over the weekend. Am going through my stash with a more sensible knitter who, gasp, only buys the yarn she needs for her current project and who NEVER has more than two UFOs on her needles. However, she is not allowed near my sock yarn. It is sacred.
    I’d say get well soon, Stephanie, but I think your condition is chronic.
    Cheers!

  119. I detect knitting mania. I cannot tell you how many times varying forms of creative mania have taken hold in my house. You are on a roll and I think it is fantastic. Merely organizing your stash into projects, complete with patterns is a good thing. Trying to bring your friends and relatives along for the fun is really sweet of you. I’m not sure what the books in the bathroom indicate but I’m sure it will work out!

  120. The virus has definitely gone global – it’s arrived in New Zealand (been here for a while truth be told) and while I’m currently treating it with a serious dose of “don’t be silly – finish what you’ve already got on the needles”, this remedy is proving to be not nearly strong enough and I can feel a new project coming on on Thursday when I’m back on leave! The hard part is deciding what – Rav is getting some serious workouts (not all on work time πŸ™‚ )
    Happy New Year Stephanie. I adore your blog, and wish you and your loved ones a safe and happy 2011.

  121. That is so not fair! Giving a link to TNNA! Is gleefully infecting others one of the symptons of Startitis?

  122. The problem appears to be global. I’m on third pair of mittens and a hat since Christmas. Right now have only a mitten on needles. Yep, only one thing. It’s making me nervous.
    But I’ve been pouring over a zillion patterns, swatching, casting on, ripping out (or as grandson says, “unknitting”) all week. I have yarn picked out of the stash and will know the patterns when I see them. Want patterns for sweater with bulky Noro yarn, socks, scarves, cowl. Obviously I have an abundance of those patterns, just not quite the right ones — so far.
    I bought 3 packs of DPNs this weekend. Whoops, didn’t need all of them — part of the disease. I’m expecting two knitting books to be delivered any day now. I’m certain that I need them.
    I believe the best cure, if you want one, is to buy more yarn. Something about “feed a cold/fever/craft.”
    We could have a 12-step program, maybe knit-a-non, and find support to continue with our behavior. Who the heck does it hurt? No one.
    Happy needles.

  123. I, for one, would like to thank patient zero for spreading the virus. Those mittens are awesome! (and I am sure that Spillyjane is thankful as well)

  124. I humbly submit that, to date, “There is no resolution to startitis.” It has gone airborne and as we all know that once this occurs, there is no hope for order in the knitting world ever again. No hope.

  125. I have found an effective way to combat startitis. Contract both a sinus infection and bronchitis. It has rendered breathing complicated and makes distiguishing between a sweater pattern and a mitten pattern impossible – even with a picture.

  126. It’s spreading like ebola! I believe it may have mutated beyond being airborne, and it is now web-borne too. Ravelry is a prime suspect for its spread. It’s running rampant in mid-Missouri, and I have reason to believe, despite official reports to the contrary, that it’s broken out around the world.
    Hey. . . give me back my needles. . .I need them. I can too do this many projects at a time…

  127. This just in from West Coast Knitting News:
    Although previously thought to be contained to the region of southern Ontario, an outbreak of startitis in the south coast of Oregon has been confirmed. Initially thought to have been started by the news that a Fair Isle class will be offered in the region, patient zero (local) has been seen purchasing large amounts of alpaca in brown and gray colours. This is suspected to be due to a concern of this particular patient regarding her sons, who live in the warmer climes, leaving soon for the frigid regions of the UK.
    With a cold-hearted disregard for the mountain of wool currently crying out for attention the new projects (Gnome mittens? Thanks Steph) are taking up all available time and attention, leaving the patient both exhausted and exhilarated at the same time. These two conditions have been confirmed by the Center for Knitting Disease Control to be the precursors to a full blown epidemic.
    Updates as they come in.

  128. At least you’re only being seduced by mittens. Nice sane little mittens – sure, you have to slog through the second one, but still, they’re mittens. Me, I’m seduced by weaving wool blankets. Weaving them is better than knitting them, but still – blankets. BIG piles of yarn involved. At least I can feel virtuous it’s all coming from my stash. Now, if you get seduced by the thrill of knitting a queen-sized bedspread on size 2 needles, then I’ll have sympathy for you!

  129. oh-ooohh… startitis must be very very VERY contageous! it has managed to spread all over the atlantic to european continent, all the way over some mountains, to reach vienna, austria.
    additionaly, I have a special form of startitis, pushing me to wind more and more sockyarn into skeins so I can dye it. how will this end? (as we all know, it means, I will have to buy more boxes for my stash of dyed yarns, and more needles, in order to cast on more and more projects with some freshly dyed yarn…)

  130. Planning for the Mitten Summit 2012? alternate years with Sock Summit? No not summit…Mosh? Mitten Mosh?Mitten Mayhem?Mitten Meet?

  131. It hit me hard but briefly, when I suddenly realized that a beautiful houndstooth jacket in the winter IK was perfect for 2 of my stash yarns! I immediately knit up a swatch, but the virus was effectively killed when it became undeniably clear that I didn’t have nearly enough of the 2 discontinued yarn. Whew! That was close!

  132. How funny,that is just what I looked like this weekend. The moon? The fact I finally have some free time after the holidays? Oh but just what to settle in with?

  133. Middlesex VT – Reports from this little town report an outbreak of Holy Crapitis. This knitter cleaned and reorganized her stash and found multiple UFO’s, some of which she has absolutely no recognition of. Either it is early onset dementia or other knitters have been using her coat closet for their stashes too. Authorities state that level of brain crampage to be quite severe. The knitter has been steadily working on said discovered projects although twitches have been noticed when she looks at the suri alpaca/silk roving in her spinning basket. Authorities also suggest that Startitis can develop into Holy Crapitis. Knitters in Toronto should be vigilant.

  134. OMG – It’s here in Northeastern Ohio too. At least now I know that it is a disease and that I am powerless. Otherwise I would be forced to explain the multiple socks on needles, the sweater, the baby blanket, the stash in bins, bags and the trunk of the car and the three new books I recently purchased. And now I am off to night night, where I will probably spread it to other knitters. Previously I had attributed my problem to ADD and am thrilled to know that the affliction might be a viral. But please reassure me that no one is actually working on a cure.

  135. SW Oregon, USA. University of Oregon colors of yellow and green have infected almost the entire state population. State officials declare that crafters must have all projects in those two colors finished by the time the Championship Bowl Game between the Oregon Ducks and Auburn Tigers(who?) begins at 5.30 PST. Highly infectious enthusiasm is causing workers by the hundreds, to leave their jobs early today. Yeah, baby, GO DUCKS! , Umm, err…..duration of infection will be over possibly by tomorrow morning but lasting sore throats will be noted.

  136. At the first hint of infection I started a prophylactic yarn inventory confirming that many projects are possible well into the future and confined myself to only working on 3 well balanced projects, with the possibility of starting a 4th as part of a KAL based on information that KALs are considered a holistic “supplement” which will help speed up the recovery from “startitis”

  137. Thus far, I’ve managed to avoid catching Startitis, and am 1/3 way through a 2nd slipper sock for Dad. But with the snowstorm that buried Atlanta due to hit Maryland tomorrow, my resistance could fall – despite the two afghans, a scarf and a shawl currently on the needles. However, I don’t like the shawl and plan to reclaim the yarn for a different pattern, thus nullifying a false start.

  138. The virus hit Europe!
    (I’m in Germany) and today at the LYS there was a frenzy about mitten and sock pattern (must have been all not-yet-Ravelry-users πŸ˜‰ ), and the poor few skeins of Alpaca and Cashmere were sold out before the mass of people could get inside, so people started to buy everything they could get their hands on…
    It was DRAMA and I’m happy to be alive at home now.

  139. Virus has happily spread to Chicago. And this knitter is happy to have caught the bug–delusions and all! πŸ™‚

  140. I don’t have startitis (in fact, I’m suffering a severe case of finishitis right now), I can always be convinced to buy a new set of 4.5mm needles – despite owning many pairs. Honestly, I don’t know where they all go to.

  141. Oh no!! I’m showing early signs of it!! Relocating yarn stash, browsing feverishly through patterns on Ravelry, casting on for new projects when I promised myself I wouldn’t til the ones I was working on were finished… I just thought it was pregnancy hormones!! Thank you for the correct diagnostic information!! πŸ™‚

  142. What happens when one is simply so overwhelmed by the possibilities that one just isn’t decisive enough to start?

  143. I too have finishitis lately but I think it is preparation of possibly contracting startis as there are 2 new babies in the future…

  144. I have observed that Startitis can be cured by cutting off monetary and plastic credit card sources. One cannot start if there are no funds to feed the yarn fever that ensues.
    Once the smell of new yarn is quashed by cutting off the funds…then sanity returns and reasonable babbling is restored.

  145. Again missy, too late….. now you tell me. A virus easily spread to Salem Oregon once again.

  146. Reporting that startitis has been reported in the desert southwest. Additional symptoms include the need to make gnome mittens when the infected lives in a state where said mittens can only be worn once per year (unless you turn the air conditioning way, way down in your house for the day)

  147. It’s also spread south to Michigan. Where 2 pairs of fingerless mitts, 2 pairs of socks, a sweater, a poncho, and half a dozen “hibernating” projects are underway. Chances are I can head it off at the pass, but then, I just got bad news from far away and feel the need to express my love in the form of a prayer shawl…..

  148. I just dragged my husband to the computer to read these comments. After reading the first 10 or so his only remark was “That’s just crazy”.
    The craziest/bestest thing is that there is no cure…it only gets worse

  149. OMG Stephanie LOL!!! I just read your blog outloud in the lys where I work and have everyone in STITCHES!! Too funny!!!

  150. Oh, so your the one I caught it from. Especially the scarf mutation. From the sound of the comments though, sounds like it’s a pandemic now.

  151. You mean to tell me that this * holds up 4 skeins of sock yarn and a half a bear sweater* is your fault??? LOL!

  152. It has definitely swum upstream at Niagara and braved the coldest Michigan lakes, and has been diagnosed by the CDC in Mid-Michigan. Can I blame the salmon?

  153. I hold to the belief that this happens in January as a result of the mad rush to finish Christmas gifts, followed by a short hiatus…

  154. The condition is aggravated by well-meaning relatives who see their beloved one knitting during every spare (and not-so-spare) moment before Christmas and, both not realizing the insidiousness of the virus and desperate for gift ideas, give them gift certificates from yarn shops.

  155. Yup, I contracted startitis last week, it seems like there is no ebb in sight. I don’t blame the outbreak in Ontario, rather the snowfall that fell upon Saskatchewan mixed with an influx of time due to the flu.

  156. It’s made it to London: I’m awaiting delivery of several knitting books, and a bag of 15 balls of KnitPicks yarn just arrived from the US ready to be made into a Mario Sweater Vest, despite the fact that there are 4 babies due in my office in the next 3 months, I’m making gloves for myself, my boyfriend and best friend both have birthdays in a couple of weeks, Valentine’s Day is fast approaching, I promised to make my brother a Sack Boy toy, my friend’s little girl turns three in March and I’ve become obsessed with socks. What’s the treatment for this condition???!

  157. I couldn’t read all the comments, but this Californian has been knocked off her feet with Startitis! Literally, in my knitting chair, surrounded by about 10 bags–all different projects. Also two patterns from SpillyJane! Can’t wait to start on those.

  158. This disease is spread simply by reading about it. Fingers start to itch and then urges to pull out stash items increase dramatically

  159. The disease is called “LOL” meaning lack of light. Bears hibernate, knitters start projects. Natural to a knitter.

  160. I’ve succumbed. Despite New Year’s resolutions posted on ravelry. Didn’t even last a full week. Even with a horrible flu/sinus infection.
    Startitis is rampant in Allentown, PA!! (and we love it – not really looking for a cure)

  161. It has made it to Texas,
    I just started over a sweater because I didn’t want to frog most of it.
    I also in the last few days started Christmas Ornaments trying to create my own version of a tag tie on hat I bought on clearance after Christmas.
    I also need cast on my daughter’s birthday present. Her Birthday is in less then 7 weeks. It is a pattern I have never done before.

  162. It has definately it Michigan as well!! Despite the fact that I already have 2 pair of mittens, a scarf and a sweater started already. The spilly jane mittens are calling my name as well as the baby dress for a co-worker who is having her first girl after 2 boys!

  163. Has spread to Seattle, although symptoms began almost simultaneously to Patient Zero’s first symptoms, so could be a separate outbreak. Currently no known cure. Prescription: increased time spent knitting, planning knitting, reviewing patterns, researching on Ravelry and yarn will lessen symptoms. Prognosis: poor, no known cure, disease may wax and wane, may resolve over time and become dormant, but infection may re-activate at any time, especially around various yarn-based festivals, conferences, classes, holidays.

  164. I seem to be suffering from crochet startitis. Blankets and small squares that really want to be cushions everywhere. I think it’s cos it’s quicker than knitting I kid myself that I can finish everything in a week while also trying to knit a cushion. Man I’m even boring myself now!

  165. I think that startitis is actually an allergic reaction caused by the histimines released during an outbreak of christmas-time finishitis. It is showing up here in FL too – i’m praying for the unseasonably cold weather to come back – you canadian’s are hogging it all!

  166. Startitis is usually a temporary flare-up (temporary being a relative term :-)). It quickly turns into the more chronic condition of beginosis which can be accompanied by stashism. Stashism can also appear on its own. All of these supposed diseases are highly contagious, but those most susceptible do not respond well to preventative measures and tend not to seek treatment. They are very content to live with the “ailments” and many thrive while stricken. What courageous people!

  167. Hi.La.Ri.Ous… I got the bug too. The comment about the sweater clinched it for me…

  168. I have been resisting so, so, so very hard! I do have my 2011 Christmas list, and about 3/5 of the yarn required, and as soon as I finish the four things that should be done today or tomorrow…
    This is why I own one set of interchangeables (no extra cables), a few Addi Turbo Laces (all in different sizes) and some DPNs, so I am limited to the amount of projects I can have. We just won’t talk about the ones on hold on waste yarn in the closet.

  169. Egads! I’ve been doing the exact same thing here in Ohio. “Misery” loves company, though!

  170. Yep, we lost a relative to a severe case of startitis.
    We lost her in a vat of custom dyed yarn. We tried to save her, but she just kept poking us with a knitting needle….

  171. The idea of mapping out the areas of startitus is fabulous. How do we do that? I have started another scarf (did you feel how cold it was today – minus 19 with a windchill), another mitten, and a cowl, despite the fact I have TWO sweaters needing attention. The Stash is demanding to be unleashed!!! York Region (north of Toronto) has succumbed to startitus.

  172. just little knitty cells dividing…common…
    no need for concern…seek yarn. never label
    the box you keep them in and all will be well.

  173. This virus has made it’s appearance on Prince Edward Island, Canada. I am surrounded by a large quanity of yarn projects in various states of completion around my chair. While awaiting an order for more yarn for mitts that I want to try. I know that I have it bad. The only reassuring thing is that I know that there are OTHERs here who are suffering too. I call them for reassurance

  174. well, that would explain why my house is not clean….i’ve got a VIRUS.. ya… that’s the ticket.. a virus…..

  175. The virus has certainly spread to Calgary. I think the experience of finishing a lot of Christmas knitting makes a person far more vulnerable to contracting the illness. I fear I’m pretty far gone. Despite being surrounded by recently started projects, all I can think about is more things I want to cast on.

  176. A source who is emotionally close but physically distant (for safety) suggests that the periodic shouting of “GANSEY!” into the ear of Patient Zero may temporarily decrease the severity of symptoms.
    But I’m not holding my breath.

  177. The virus hit myself and the muse hard this past weekend. Bins of yarn upturned on the studio floor, books unshelved – no US 7 needles to be had (all have projects on them) and coupons being clipped to go get more. I believe it was caught on a rare visit to an actual yarn shop (2 hours from home) rather than a quick trip to the craft store. All the cashmere started to make my head spin and all the 8in dpns kept leaping onto my purchase pile on the counter. Here’s hoping none of us shake off the bug anytime soon.

  178. There has been an outbreak reported in the Utah area. Multiple sock, mitten and hat starts have been popping up all over the house with the knitter often spinning around in her chair trying to decide which one to actually work on in any given minute.

  179. I think it’s repercussion from the holiday have-to-get-this-done-for-X timeline….we now want to knit FUN THINGS for us!!!, and others we don’t have to knit for.
    I gleefully cast on a Pretty Thing Cowl last night, with the softest yarn, stayed up til 2am even though I was getting sick, but I was very happy doing it!! I am ready to cast on a scarf, another pair of socks (to keep the 4 onesies on the needles company), and maybe some handwarmers, cuz this 15 degrees C house is making me freeze!

  180. Gosh – I had no idea this was a virus! Whew – there. Is hope then here in Maryland. : )

  181. Five projects in progress strategically placed all around my “knitting chair”. Trip to LYS has resulted in another pattern plus yarn for the pattern plus ANOTHER pair of sz 7 needles because all the other pairs are in use. Told friend who works at LYS to NOT SELL ME ANYMORE YARN/PATTERNS UNTIL I PRODUCE EVIDENCE OF PROJECT COMPLETION!! (She is such an enabler!) Startitis is rampant in Michigan.

  182. I barely escaped spending $50 on sweater patterns at TwistCollective yesterday, you know, my last day of winter break before the new semester comes crashing down on my head and I have to grade instead of knit. The only way I was going to make a sweater is if I learned to knit in my sleep or with my feet while I grade. Both of which sound like surprisingly appealing options.
    The advantage to living alone is, no one is there to judge you while you burrow through your stash and leave needles and projects that only need the ends worked away lying about all over the place.

  183. It’s struck on the seacoast of Maine as well! But I thought it didn’t count if I placed the orders online while AWAY FROM MY HOME (taking care of our grandsons!). And if they’re going to be GIFTS, they really don’t count either, right? I’m loving that I got my gauge swatch right on the FIRST attempt. I’m on a buzz . . .

  184. confinement to enclosed spaces for long periods of time in northern climes seems to exacerbate symptoms of startitis!! beware! reports of impending accumulation of frozen, white precipitation are also known to incite outbreaks .. while there is no known cure, exposure to sun, sea and sand is believed to (at least temporarily) alleviate the condition.

  185. Startitis has spread to Detroit. I’ve been fighting a case since before Christmas. Now I’m elbow deep in mittens, a hood, 2 (two) advent calendar scarves, a shawl and a pair of slipper socks. All of this has happened while I’m in the midst of sorting my stash for relocation to a smaller abode. Alas, much of said stash will not be completing the migration and will end up dontated for senior knitting group charity knitting.
    Perhaps I’ve started all these projects in order to justify keeping the yarn. After all, I can’t give away yarn that is currently being knitted into something I really want, right?

  186. It’s not really startitus – it is just wonder planning to have the right project to turn to at any knitting moment.
    I am having some wonderful planning myself – two shawls want to join the party, plus a sweater I really need, plus maybe some of that self-imposed sock fun…
    Really, I am perfectly fine…

  187. Breaking news! Startitis seems to have mutated and crossed disciplines. Reports are coming in from Australia of similar symptoms hitting other crafting communities.
    One woman who is a quilter reports that she nearly drowned in a fabric explosion and her partner has so many pieces of furniture requiring restoration in the house they are contemplating moving!!
    Experts believe the mutation began when the quilter, who has only ever knitted scarves (we won’t mention the sweater incident of 1986) thought she might have a go at the lovely mittens she saw on a blog. No explanation or link can be attributed to the furniture symptoms but research is continuing.
    More news as it comes to hand!
    Your roving reporter
    Lush
    Sydney, Australia

  188. I have reStartitis. I’m on the third pattern for this baby sweater. The kid was born in October, and if I rip this one more time and move to another pattern, the boy will be in kindergarten before I get this 6-month size sweater finished.
    I have two in-progress Christmas projects for my sister that now must become birthday projects. But her birthday is in August, so I have a bit of time. (Except that one of the projects was supposed to be for her last birthday before I ripped out one pattern and changed to another one–reStartitis–and aimed for Christmas. And missed.)
    But so far I seem to be immune to actual Startitis. I mean **headwhip** FLAMINGO mittens? Really? http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/flamingo-mittens Hmmm. I wonder if I have any Palette in pink. What was I saying? Nope. Immune to Startitis…

  189. I believe this virus has occurred due to the stress of Christmas knitting and a book deadline at the same time!!!! You have been reining it in for so long, it is just natural that the Startitus would break out at this time!! No worries – go with the flow & ride it for as long as you can!

  190. Epidemiologists in California are suspecting this is becoming a pandemic. Reports of multiple cases have been reported from the Eureka/Arcata in the north down to San Diego. There appears to be a strong correlation between startitis and year-end sales of yarn in addition to the post-Christmas arrival of yarn shipments from online suppliers. At this point, it is still speculation. As statisticians constantly remind us, correlation does not equal causation. (But knitters know better!)

  191. The virus has continued its march…it has reached Idaho as well. 3 pairs of socks. A shawl. And maybe a sweater. Where will it stop?

  192. Spreading through the Southern California area like wildfire, startitis has affected more than one area knitter. Worse than the “wool-creep” is the rictus of glee that afflicts the facial muscles of the victim. It seems to only be allieviated by continuing the project into the middle and terminal phases. This, however, presents its own problems: namely, a Turrets-like tic that can sometimes be understood in words that the hearer wishes he hadn’t heard.

  193. It’s hit Perth, Western Australia too. Reports are coming in of knitters and quilters sorting through their yarn and fabric stashes despite 40 degree centigrade temperatures.

  194. It’s obviously spread down to Oklahoma, too. I’ve been having a serious outbreak during the last couple of weeks.:)

  195. Adealide, South Australia here. I WONDERED what that was. And why, in 40 degree heat I am still walking around the house patting wool and thumbing through books of heavy cabled jumpers. Must be feverish…

  196. Officials in North America are loathe to conduct research for a cure, as spread of the disease appears to have a welcome effect on the economy.

  197. Here in Central Texas, the virus has hit concurrently with the quilting Stash Building virus.

  198. I’ve been reading this blog silently for about two years. Now I have to report, that the virus also reached Switzerland. I know of one person, who had to buy sockneedles, even though she had several sets already. And still in her head swirl more ideas of sockpatterns she want to (has to) knit.

  199. Oh dear…I was madly working out the justification to purchase another size 4mm needles to cast on one more project prior to the first Knit Sister’s Knit Night of 2011 – which is this Wednesday. hmmm, I’d better be careful.

  200. All right. Far northern Minnesota reporting in now. Proximity to Canada has infected me. We have snow – do we have snow??!! Two feet plus, and below zero temps to maintain it.
    I am appalled at you blog-posters with single-digit UFOs. I can’t remember that time.
    I think I’m too busy with my 3×5 yarn-inventory cards and sock yarn spreadsheets….must squeeze in some knitting. Is this OCD?
    I am about to embark on Second Sock Roulette (name courtesy of a certain SoCal knitter) – project bags of finished single socks, and each month I will randomly pick one to do the second sock.
    I have just spent a year (and 10 days) on a yarn diet – and of course DH gave me a large gift certificate to fave LYS for Christmas.
    Re-shelved knitting books last week and found 6 dupes to throw on eBay. Give me a small atta-girl – I’m trying here!
    I have lovely containers for my UFOs – and they are labeled in French and Spanish and soon Ojibwe (DH is mono-lingual…very language-challenged).
    It’s imperative to have a project for every minute of my life – mindless knitting for riding in car, anything with a pattern for rare solitude at home, socks done past the heel turn for waiting in line or meetings……
    Pretty Thing in soft burgundy finished 3 months ago – needs only ends-weaving and a bit of blocking. FINISH IT! Second one in green OTN. Oh, I could go on and on…
    Contemplating the permanent effects of my affliction is the only time I wish I lived alone – but of course I can just picture the mounds of impenetrable fiber around me then! No – – – must find discipline. Somewhere……..Stephanie, you are unforgivable!!

  201. Isn’t this a normal and rational thing for knitters at this time of year? It’s winter, my feet and head and hands are cold and need warm woolly things to soothe them. Plus, Christmas knitting is done, and now I can knit whatever I want!
    P.S. to the person who mentioned the Spillyjane flamingo mittens – Dang it! My wip list just got longer.

  202. I believe this knitter has suffered many bouts of startitis in the past, I hope this bout does result in at least some finished objects to show from it!
    I’m reining in my urge to KNIT ALL THE THINGS and am determinedly working to finish the projects that are on the needles. I fear though this may soon go right out of the window!

  203. Startitis hit Amsterdam on Friday, apparently the result of NEEDING to have quiet time and not knowing what to knit. Currently OTN are 3 blankets, a first sock and a hat/scarf/mitts set…

  204. New York state has already fallen victim to this terrible virus. I just didn’t realize that multiple knitting books in the bathroom was a symptom! I too have yarn out all over the place, books spread everywhere in an effort to locate the perfect pattern for stash yarn, and a overwhelming desire for new yarn! I do have to say in my own defense that one of the reasons that all this fibery goodness has totally trashed my house is that I’ve been trying to arrange my very own self-imposed sock and mitten club. Inspired by an amazingly quick and successful knitter named Stephanie who managed to pull it off last year with great success, this slow and plodding knitter has decided to give it a try, but at a much slower, every 2 month pace. Meanwhile I really need to get some help in reining in my overwhelming desire to buy 50 new and very cool patterns and the yarn to go with them LOL!!!

  205. My family needs to read this. They believe there is something I can do to stop these very same activities. At least now I know it is a virus….and there are no drugs available to kill virus’s. I guess we will all have to learn to live with the effects.

  206. Too funny!
    Long live the graveyard of good intentions and the cornucopia of yarn :))

  207. Clearly this is a pandemic! At first I thought you were writing about me, until I read the needle size in metric. What? Someone else with the same symptoms?! Then I viewed all the comments! Should someone call the CDC? This is getting out of control, and only 348 knitting days left until Christmas!!!

  208. The virus has spread across Lake Ontario to Rochester as well. I can’t find the floor in my living room. Probably should take the rest of the week from work and try to recover!

  209. I sat down yesterday with the project most currently next to the big easy chair and did a few rows, then browsed Ravelry and printed the thistle design for the Kauni sweater, but just to look at–you know. And then did a few more rows, and went to pull out the yarn for that baby sweater–just to look at for ideas, you know. And then knit a few more rows and went looking for that cardigan with cables that would be perfect for the cones of yarn we just bought at the harp store (VERY long story) and then went back to said project with stern determination, knit a few more rows, needed a mental break and read this. Shit. The virus must have come through the Great Lakes somehow to Duluth. I knew SOMETHING was up. I just thought it was a reaction to knitting for the rest of the universe since September! Now I know, at least, who to blame here…

  210. So that’s what I have! I thought it was a mutated form of “Snow Storm Flu” – you know, when the weather man says it is going to snow so people swarm to the grocery store for bread and milk because “Hey, its going to snow! We might not get out for a whole day!” Instead I order yarn online in anticipation of said storm – I mean really! GET YOUR PRIORITIES STRAIGHT PEOPLE!! Every knitter knows its fresh yarn not fresh milk that gets you sanely through a snow storm!! (That UPS driver better get here today too!)
    PS Let it also be known that if you are a quilter AND a knitter, “Stashitis” can be transferred to your stash! In the weeks of holiday madness when I didn’t have time to get into the craft room, the yarn has tumbled from its cabinets and bins and is now co-mingling with the fabric on the floor of the crafting room. The frivolity has gotten so bad in there that they actually managed to get the door closed. God only knows what we will find when we break down the door this weekend….

  211. It’s more than gone transatlantic – it’s spread through Europe has landed it in Finland. At least half the girls in my knitting circle here in Turku, and one other living close to Helsinki has got it.
    Now I know where this virus came from. I’ll say the same as another reader above: “when my hubby asks, I’ll blame it on you”.
    And I obviously need to collect some books for the bathroom, too.

  212. Your sense of wit just rocks (as usual). Carry on—reading you is so much more fun and so much cheaper than therapy, and it serves the valuable purpose of reminding all of us that we are not alone in our obsessions, denials, and refusals to begin a 12-step program. πŸ™‚

  213. Uh-oh, my knit-immune system is already dangerously low – I may have gotten infected from across the globe, just by reading this blog.
    Symptom: “Unpacking the yarn stash into the kitchen” actually sounds like a great idea!
    (and I only came here to read something while I finish the I-cord on a baby gift thing, which is my last obstacle to cast-on mania – woohoo!!!!!!!!!)

  214. Too late–it’s already spread south to Michigan, where it’s showing up on various tables and in a few tote bags….

  215. Sadly, you are not the first infected with startitis. It must have blown in from the east because I am about 2 1/2 hours east of you and have had startitis for at least a year. I guess we can take some peace in the fact in that it doesn’t appear to be quickly spreading if it took a year to get to you! Sorry to blow my germs your way.

  216. “Just confirmed! Reported outbreak of startitis has just been confirmed in the Algarve in Portugal, where there is no snow. It is believed to have been spread via interlocking internet blogs, emanating from various sites , primarily in the U.S., Canada and New Zealand. Characterized by….”

  217. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report a particulary virulent form of startitis on the North Shore of Massachusetts. The patient there has acquired the disease in two forms, knitting and crochet, and last night was muttering in her delirium about a yarn-dyeing project. Investigators were puzzled as to the source of this infection, as the victim’s car is not running and has not been in the parking lot of the LYS since Dec. 26. However, the US Postal Service reported a delivery this week from Knitpicks, which is believed to have been the vector of infection, exacerbated by the Harlot and Ravelry. Donations may be made to the victim’s yarn fund.

  218. I’ve got a case of serial startitis; I’ve begun and finished two hats in the new year, and just cast on for mittens today. (a former Yankee snowed-in in North Carolina has few choices)
    If this is terminal, I’m going to love the hospice and ADORE heaven.

  219. Maybe I should visit and bring the cure with me. I’m having an attack of finish-itis, which is quite unlike me. I’ve been pulling out all sorts of old projects to work on. At least we balance each other out!

  220. It appears the dreaded startitis has hit the lower 48 as well. Since there is a knitter who has promised two infant sweaters,two pair fingerless gloves a ear band and a ski hat by monday. It is tuesday and she thinks with fair winds and the imminent snow it may happen….her family thinks she needs medical attention.Can anyone help?

  221. Poor thing, I know how you feel as I am afflicted with SYSABLU (Sock Yarn Stash Aquision Beyond Lifetime Use). I have 2 huge bins of sock yarn (not counting my special stash of Wollmeise) and made not one but two orders of sock yarn from the New Years sale at Cherry Tree Hill (rather large orders which will fill another large bin). What to do, what to do? Pray for a snow day off work tomorrow.

  222. You know, SpillyJane herself will be in KW tonight at the guild meeting. Selling patterns in person. I’m pretty sure that could get you infected with several more mittens. It’s only about an hour and half drive from your place. And think of all the knitters you could infect.

  223. I seem to have a “boomerang” case of startitis. The first bout hit hard when unrealistic pre-Christmas knitting ideas crashed up against (but tried to ignore) the realism of pre-Christmas moving to a new house.
    Then it came back around and hit me again when, due to the chaos resulting from said move, I couldn’t find half the projects I had started and was dissatisfied with the other half. What to do but CO more? (A new KAL on Ravelry didn’t help, either!)
    I am now dreaming (halucinating?) about finding a pattern like the adorable asymmetrical sweater (store-bought) a friend was wearing this weekend that would be perfect to wear to a social event on Jan. 29. Sure, I can finish that in time, as long as those pesky unpacked boxes stay out of my way! Off to dreamland (Ravelry) to search for a pattern….

  224. I’ve caught it before reading about your infection so it is viral. I think it is weather related, as here in Connecticut we are having a record year for snowfall.
    I now have 6 projects on needles instead of the normal 2. I keep looking at yarn websites, adding to my wishlists but have so far managed to avoid purchasing more yarn!
    Thank you for the funny post, it really made me laugh!

  225. BTW we are going to get socked(pun not intended) with snow in Salisbury Maryland, it has already caused a grinding halt in North Carolina by all accounts from cute boyfriend. Any one interested in a bring your unfinished to a get together can contact the cpponygirl1@gmail on Face book. Together we can stem the tide or else my kids(my boss, and various other contingents) say they will hide all my needles.

  226. Oh, no! It’s spread to Mississippi too, and there’s not a yarn store within 100 miles!! To the stash!!!

  227. Virus is rampent here in Kentucky. While I did finish two pairs of socks from last year, I also cast on a sweater and a pair of mittens. If I did not have 4 pairs of sock (or five) on the needles, a clapotis and a scarf already on the needles, that I am planing to finish in January.
    I am not clear which year this January may fall in, but I am on a mission.

  228. OMG It’s spread to Maine!!
    Just this past week I cast on another sock and another pair of mittens despite the sweater that has mere inches to go on the sleeve cuffs. My oh My!!

  229. I think it’s spread to BC. I swore to myself that this would be a month of finishing, so in the spirit of that I finished a scarf, a pair of socks, a pair of mittens, and was working on a pair of colourwork mittens that have been on the needles far too long. Then I remembered that I needed to make a pair of slippers for someone as a late Christmas gift. Those are finished and gifted, but then I started another pair of socks. And then I started a sweater. Then yesterday it started snowing and it seemed a perfect time to start a double-knit hat.

  230. I too have developed such a case. I have two shawls in progress, I have yarn set aside for 3 pairs of socks, I found some darling baby sweater patterns my 4 month old granddaughter *really needs*, as well as some sock patterns for socks that will fit her (the store bought ones fall off too easily). Then yesterday I found the knitpicks catalogue,and ended up ordering 13 skeins of worsted to make an icelandic sweater I have fallen in love with, along with ordering books from them (who can resist 40% off?) AND ordering some knitting and cookbooks from Amazon (again the prices were amazing… and I got a new stand mixer for Christmas!). That doesn’t even begin to detail the cross stitch patterns that are wips or the sewing that is on hold now that my sewing machine is back in the shop…

  231. @Jan @ 3:17– it’s okay, Jan, we’ve got you covered. Shipment of snow was delivered to the southeast US, so if you’re knitting mittens, you’ll look like a genius. If that one somehow missed you, let us know. There seems to be plenty to go around.
    As for the epidemic of startitis, I see a lot of anecdotal reports, but I think more proof is needed. Photos, people!
    As for myself- I don’t appear to have caught this virus–it’s possible that the head cold I got instead is incompatible with it. Personally, I’d rather have startitis, as it looks like more fun. Maybe I should cast on something tonight and see if it drives the head cold out?

  232. Reading comments from others in various parts of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, I give in, give up, and happily give over to Startitis. I’m surrounded here in Harrisburg with the disease, which is not a dis-ease, but very easy.

  233. So far so good for me but I am going to isolate myself and just knit on the item in progress and hope for the best . If I go to our LYS I’m SUNK!!

  234. Whew, thanks for that report! I can now tell my Doctor “no worries, I now know what I have and there is no cure but, that’s okay!” My PPO is pleased too! πŸ™‚

  235. Holding out with a mild form in south MS. It doesn’t help that there is a gift certificate to the LYS in my possession. The unusual cold weather has this knitter looking at sweater, mitten and hat patterns. Never mind that there is already an afghan on the hook, afghan, socks, and baby blanket on needles, and a blanket on the loom. Oh, ignore the lady from south MS who didn’t realize until she typed it that this is not a mild form after all.

  236. I’ve got it! I knew there was a problem when I started casting on projects and had no self control as to how many I started. I’m still feeling slightly dazed because I still feel the need to cast on more projects.

  237. A vector for the virus has been identified at A Tangled Skein in Hyattsville, MD. All the Wednesday night and Thursday afternoon regulars are infected.

  238. AHA!!! that explains why I’ve suddenly contemplated making mittens and wondering how those separate fingers are formed in gloves!!
    WHEW!! it’s great to have an explanation.

  239. I plan on catching this every year right after Winter Solstice. A mix of New Year Resolutions and knitting presents for everyone else always collide in my stash reorganization.
    Two dangerous factors for this year:
    1) My awesome fiance bought me a swift this year. So, now all my stash can be cast on all at the same time.
    2) I have a sweater planned for my best friend’s birthday, which is kinda in a week, and I’m only half done. She knits, she’ll understand that I’m handing her a torso, not a vest. The sleeves will be late.

  240. Um, as the HARLOT, aren’t you a carrier for the virus? I’m going to knit in isolation for a wee bit until my deadline is past.

  241. So that is what is wrong with me. I thought it had something to do with being trapped in my house with two sick kids. It is me that was sick all along.

  242. Try combining your fiendish to knit new projects and a love for gardening – we have the same piles of books, but mine are seed catalogs, seed packets, pots ready to be filled with soil, computer software for planning gardens AND yarn @#$% everywhere. This time of year is trying on a relationship.

  243. Try a quarantine: patient zero should be gently led away from her stash and books, to a coffee shop nearby with not more than two projects!

  244. I had to send this to my husband to explain why there are a pair of alpaca socks, a stash busting sock yarn scarf, a kidsilk haze Ishbel, and a February Lady Sweater all crowding out any space around the computer desk, and all cast on since 12/30. None of which are more than 70% complete. All of which I want to be finished with by the end of the month.
    Diagnosis appears to be severe startitis and self-delusion.
    Happy knitting Stephanie!

  245. Maybe it’s something about a new year that does it to ya. As for me, I was already contemplating mittens when you mentioned them — specifically, I was looking at the Knitpicks kit.

  246. It has spread to Maryland too. I purchased a mitten and scarf pattern this weekend. And Of course I purchased to much yarn too (as if there is such a thing as too much yarn)

  247. So THAT explains why I have an illusion scarf on the needles, a sock lion started and am plotting out a Tardis kleenex box cozy on graph paper….
    Associated symptoms; signing up for 2 craft exchanges?

  248. Oh my dear you are NOT a victim, you are a survivor. I belong to a Stroke Survivor Group, we never refer to ourselves as victims. Many survivors of afflictions do not refer to themselves as victims. I’d say you are a survivor of a most wonderful affliction. KNIT ON, START ON, CAST ON AND ON AND ON.

  249. Ah…so *that’s* what’s wrong with me? Three mantillas, a scarf, 4 pair socks, 1 cape, 2 shawls, a hat, 1 adult sweater & 1 BSJ, none even close to completion. :::groan::: Is there any hope?

  250. When last seen, subject was headed west. Subject is consider armed ( with needles ) and dangerous ( to sheep ). Do not attend to engage subject.
    If you should accidentally come across the subject, raise your arms over your head and in a loud, menancing voice shout things like “MOTHS. MOTHS ARE IN THE WOOL CUPBOARD.” and “THE F—ING SQUIRREL HAS GOT THE ROVING.” and “CHRISTMAS IS ONLY 3 DAYS AWAY.”
    When the subject becomes disoriented, seek cover under a pile of laundry.

  251. Thank you so much. This is one of the best blog’s that you have written, at least for me. I have a colorwork mitten (first try) hanging out in my stash room, nearly done (last winter) and a bit puckered. I hated to frog it, because I put so much work into it and really enjoyed the knit. I put it aside because it looked so crappy! Now, I am re-inspired to take it out and give it a bath. Fingers are crossed that this will work. If not, I will not give up on colorwork knitting. You are an inspiration!!!

  252. OMG! I knew I was coming down with something last night when I couldn’t stop bringing in the big boxes from the garage and laying them all out on the floor to start one little hat! Multiple variations kept grabbing my attention and now I know I’m infected. Finished one, started another and planning about 10 more! Yikes – my family is going to put me in the hospital….(a mental facility most likely!)

  253. Posts like this are immensely bad for my self-control! They make me think it’s not only ok but actually right and proper to have six projects on the go at once!

  254. It is in Windsor, Pa….I think it’s too late to control the disease when it’s spread to the tiny towns in rural PA

  255. Never enough yarn(you speak blasphame if you believe that) and my boss still hasn’t managed to wrest the needles from my hands. I shall be crippled by the startitis my kids think I am inchohearent. Mom are you going to cook sometime soon?

  256. Haven’t had a chance to read the other 330 comments, but after reading the blog entry had to let you know that it must be the start of a new year thing and that it has spread to SE Alaska as well. My smallish knitting bag at my side has no more than four started works and the bag beside that has yarn enough for four more projects. ACK! Ah well summer will be here soon enough and we will be out getting fresh air and not sitting close by the fire knitting so much. Thanks for the laughs.

  257. I’d send you a “Get Well” card, but I’m presently buried up to my ears on the living room floor with patterns and about half my stash and the laptop with the Ravelry pattern search page…

  258. I worked on my Ravelry stash today and need to get some startitis. I didn’t even touch the handspun, weaving cotton, fingering weight for colorwork or the giant box for charity knitting and I’m close to 50 miles. Oh wait, that doesn’t include anything on the needles or hiding that I’m not aware of. It would be insulation if I had bookshelves on the outside walls!

  259. It must be the season. I just got a big box of yarn from KnitPicks, their mitten patterns and two skeins of stroll. Is it wrong to buy 465 yds of yarn because you need 20? I don’t think so. I can always make a pair of beautiful socks from the rest.

  260. What a lovely blog but I think you have got this all wrong. I have long realised that my creative pastime is not ‘Knitting’ or ‘Sewing’, it is ‘Starting Projects’. As a child I would wait for the beginning of the school holidays with excitement -what would I make? – it was thrilling. Now I can indulge that feeling all the time. Some projects only get as far as a collection of gorgeous purchased bits in a paper bag, but the thrill of looking in the bag months or years(!) later is intoxicating.
    ‘Progressing’ or ‘Finishing’ are wholly different interests which I very rarely feel interested in! Am I very poorly?

  261. My excuse is that my huge stash of yarn in the room we used to let guests sleep in won’t hurt anybody if it all falls over during The Big One here in San Diego. Of course, nobody ever stays here anymore because there is yarn all over the beds, too. So now we just call it The Yarn Room. My husband occasionally complains but then I remind him of his 5 car garage full of his stuff. At least my virus will keep people warm! His just rusts!

  262. It’s in St. Louis.
    One baby sock
    One shawl
    One pair fingerless gloves
    One hat to coordinate with fingerless gloves
    One sweater
    Another sock that’s so old it’s not worth mentioning
    Three sweaters in hibernation
    SEND BACKUP.

  263. I catch it every January. This year I’ve finally finished a UFO (sweater), started a baby blanket, knitted lace edging, a Dr Who scarf (season 13), designed and finished the knitting of a top-down raglan, and am currently plotting a 30s skirt, trims for sweaters, another of the new pattern, bed socks for a friend (new pattern again), and….

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