August 21, 2007
Divide and conquer
I was sorting through the knitting basket this morning - which, I should point out, is a metaphorical basket, not a literal, actual basket. Firstly, it wouldn't all fit in one basket (at least no basket that wouldn't take up too much indoor real estate) and secondly, I don't like it all staring at me from one place. I find it overwhelming. All that unfinished knitting glaring at me from a basket, me dreadfully outnumbered....no siree. Divide and conquer. I face 'em down one at a time, and that means I stash them all over.
The other advantage to this disseminated stashing is that it is rather easy to pretend that you don't have that much on the go....so you can start something else, which is what I was trying to do this morning when I thought maybe a reality check was in order. Therefore, I give you the current big contenders. (Naturally, this list does not include all works in progress. Just the stuff sort of on the radar. )
The Mystery Stole:
Status: Desperately behind. After learning the hard way that the beads make this a very un-portable project (I got sick of spilling beads on planes, in cars, at my mothers, in my purse) I finally realized that this should be my "sit down and concentrate" work. Since I have not sat down and concentrated since...well. I've got to get back to this.
General feeling: I still love it, and I'm really enjoying the Baruffa Cashwool, and I'm still thrilled to death with the concept of a mystery project. I'm not sure how much I like having "deadlines" and feeling "behind". The clues keep coming out and I keep falling further off the curve. I know it's self imposed anxiety, but it's there nonetheless. I just have to find a well- lit, quiet place to work on this where I don't keep throwing hundreds of beads onto the floor. (I realize that considering that most of my knitting time is on the subway, or while teen wrangling, my odds are not good.)
Socks for Joe:
Status: Mid-first sock, I'm sort of stalled. I was chugging along and then lost focus for a minute and knit the Solstice Slip ones and now this pair is just lying there.
General feeling: The yarn, while perfectly good- is not thrilling, and despite having whacked a little cable in there to keep me awake, I'm pretty bored. Grey socks. Big grey socks. I was knitting them now because Joe really, really needs me to make an investment in his dress sock collection (he's walking big holes in his others) and because he will only wear these dull colours, and because Denny keeps reminding me that you can't knit these dull colours in March or you won't have any will to live at all... I should finish them. Seriously.
Socks for me:
Status: One down, one to go. This sock has been my "shove a plain sock in your purse" knitting for the last week or so. It's my plain sock recipe from here, with no bells and no whistles. It's perfect no-brain knitting.
General feeling: I LOVE it. I love it so much that I want to marry it. The yarn is Wollmeise, though mine came from here. (There's none there now. You'll have to lurk around. Wollmeise is another of the Artisanal handpaints on the market, and as with anything made by one person, it is very hard for that one person to supply ALL of us, especially since many of us are wool-pigs. This can be frustrating, especially when you discover, like me, that this yarn is your new best friend and you just want to hug it and kiss it and call it George.)
Status: About half done. I started up with this shawl ages ago and can't remember what distracted me. (I just checked my own archives. Apparently what distracted me from this fabulous Miriam Felton pattern was another fabulous Miriam Felton pattern. Makes sense now.)
General feeling: I'm charmed by it again. The pattern is sensible and intuitive, and it doesn't take long at all to memorize. Between the wooden circular needles and such, it makes it good travel knitting.
The Kauni Cardigan
Status: All finished, but for button and neck bands. It needs the front steek sewn and cut, but my sewing machine is currently unresponsive. I need to ask Ken to toss a couple of rows of zig-zag in there for me. He's been on holiday, but I got him from the airport last night so I should be able to ask him to do my bidding now. I'd hand sew the thing, but I'm too lazy.
General feeling: What's not to love? (Well. The fact that it's so close but so far.....)
Status: Needs sleeves and a good attitude.
General feeling: Overwhelmed. This project has taken so long (though I must say, it does move more quickly when I actually knit on it) and I still think that I'm probably going to fall short on handspun. There's more fleece in the cellar, but it's unwashed and I just shudder when I think of starting that whole mess up again. In addition to that, it's got to be too big to be really portable, so it can only get home time, and I'm not home that much. Still, my love is eternal, so I suppose that considering that it was to be a wedding present and we're cruising up to our first anniversary, I should really, really just suck it up and finish. (On the other hand, we've been together so long that Joe can't really expect me to be on time with a sweater....right?)
There. These are the projects staring me down at present. (Except for the ones I'm ignoring or neglecting. I'm sure one of you is going to point out something lovely I have stuck somewhere and completely forgotten.) I need to pick priorities, start moving through the queue and at all costs, avoid starting Anne's bee shawl or a new cardigan or a new pair of socks something new if I ever hope to see the end of anything, because I do want to finish at least these things. Soon.
PS. I updated the tour page with some details about some of the events in September, and the details for the Aurora event tonight is there too.
Posted by Stephanie at August 21, 2007 12:53 PM
am I really first/ I love the colour of your plain socks! and wow! what a lot of projects on the go (but most are nearly done! lucky you!)
I am still intimidated by having too many projects happening.
But I am currently working on my very first sweater!
I've been married 33 years- my husband has not yet learned to remove the expression "why do you have ALL THIS YARN?" from his vocabulary. Any timely suggestions?
Well, y'know, if it were me, I'd heedlessly alternate between my sock and the Adamas, what with the karmic catch-up yesterday, to give myself a feeling of having a little more fun while gentling the slide back into the normal day in, day out-- Uh, normalcy. Which is kind of hard to get used to after a week of fun. But then, I'm generally a self-indulgent, heedless sorta type.
On the other hand, aren't you going to Aurora tonight? Don't you need things that are both familiar and easy to travel with? It's not like you'd finish up *both* sock and shawl before you take off, is it?? All *right*! Do the fun stuff!
Not The Better Angel
I have nothing brilliant to say about the projects, other than I think you should do what you enjoy at the moment. Life is too short to put pressure on ourselves and give ourselves self-imposed deadlines. I think with the busy life you lead, and raising 3 teenage daughters, you should cut yourself some slack and accept that there are only 24 hours in a day. And there's always that pesky laundry, food shopping and cooking to distract us from the important things like knitting and spinning, and maybe a little beading.
Your work is beautiful so even if there is a BUNCH of it, at least it is pretty to look at! =)Think of it this way you could have 100 "first socks" staring you down.
I'm coming up to my 10th anniversary and still haven't gotten my husband a wedding present (it was supposed to be a desk clock - haven't found one I like).
Your list of WIPs makes me feel better - your reasoning behind why they're not done also makes me feel less insane. That's a good thing - as my insanity level increases, there is an increase in the number of things cast on and so the crazy cycle begins...
I have so many projects going that I've started hiding them. I bought these lovely fabric cube boxes and shoved one project that's still on the radar into each and hung a nice tag from the handle to tell me what's in there. Then I shoved them all into this cube storage thing so I don't even have to see them. :) That's not counting the projects that are laying around the studio with hooks and needles in them. :) Oh well. Thankfully, I'm with someone who does the same thing (he has one motorcycle he's building, one he's trying to fix, a website he's playing with, his own crochet project, and various other little projects running around) so he won't say anything.
I love the lace shawls. Soon, I will attempt to do something like that on the sticks. I'm still getting my knitting and purling down.
Good heavens, girl! How in sweet moses are you supposed to make any progress when you take on half a continent's geography in the space of a month?!?
I think we should all just sit back and enjoy slow, vanilla socks while you conquer more territory for knitting humourists, and get three girls back to school.
Wow Stephanie! I'm so excited about Joe's Gansey. Apparently you've frogged the mistakes and re-knit it already. Just the sleeves left. That's great! I think you can definitely wait on this one and finish it up before Christmas (or maybe in November before "IT") comes creeping up. It will be a lovely gift and you deserve some time off on it.
The other projects look great! I am having terrible neck pains lately. I started knitting the "Tilted Duster" from Interweave, and had two pairs of socks and a cabled sleeveless cardigan going. Then, my neck said - what the heck do you think you're doing. Now I'm trying to do a little here and there and honestly, I don't know what to do with myself. I just sit on the couch and stare.....
I remember when you had "the claw". Have you had other pains from knitting so much? I would love to hear any ideas from those with "craft-related injuries" to see what they do to work through the pain. Is a change of posture or some sort of body apparatus in order? I don't know how much longer I can go on like this....
At the very least I can watch you finish stuff! Thanks for being there!!!
I just finished my Mysterey Shawl, its blocking right now. Keep on going, its beautiful. Somone on that site suggested threading beeds onto a needle and thread, you can then use that to bead, just loop the needle into the stich you are about to knit, put the needle back thru the first bead and pull, puts the needle onto the stich, and its a lot easier to carry around !!!
Of course, all of it is gorgeous.
I just checked the tour page. After seeing you in San Diego, Tacoma and Victoria I was excited to see you will be in Atlanta in September. Unfortunately I arrive 2 days later. Would have made a nice break in 2.5 weeks of business travel.
On the up side, I have never been to Atlanta so I look forward to the pre-scouting of yarn shops, pubs and other points of interest that you tend to share and that I can take advantage of.
Cath (currently of Edmonton)
You know, I have the 'staring down' project issue as well. My MS3 stole was starting to scare me because I could totally see it might be one I'd put away and never get back to. Hey, wait, I already have one of those - that was the shawl I stole the yarn from to knit the MS3 stole (do we see a pattern here?). So, I bit the bullet. Screamed, hissed, looked dishoveled and frightening, and made tofu pups and doritos for dinner - and finished it on Saturday. Does your tribe like doritos? We're wannabe hippies living the natural life so mine were starving for a little sin and fell for it right away!
Freudian slip moment: I at first read the description of the Gansey, as, "needs slaves and a good attitude."
You just know who is going to waltz in here and remind you what day it is, right? Suck it up before the two of them get here, go wash some fleece.
Then play with Adamas.
I know how you feel regarding the Mystery Stole (or as I call it, my Hot Mess). I keep telling myself two things:
1. It is not a race.
2. If #1 is false, then you must be happy to finish in the middle of the pack.
Dear Yarn Harlot (Stephanie),
I hate that you had to go and mention the Woolmeise yarn! As you know, it is hard enough to lay hands on some and now (just like knitting chickens!) EVERYONE in the knitting world is gonna want that yarn! So the ever-growing competition has just gotten worse and this yarn-pig is ever so wanting to lay hands on some of the Woolmeise since I found out about it from my fellow Camp Cockamamie camper, Angela! And now...now...I may never see my Woolmeise dream fulfilled!
Curse you, Yarn Harlot!
You know you want to start something new. I've found that discipline/willpower and knitting just aren't compatible. In my short year of being a knitter I've found lots of creative reasons to start something new instead of finish something current. Surrender to the call of the yarn.
And I just wanted to say that you've inspired me to take my socks places and photograph them with important landmarks. I recently took my new sock yarn to Seattle for the express purpose of starting them while I was vacationing there. I posted a picture of it in front of the Space Needle on my blog. I can't imagine what people were thinking as I was trying to take the shot...but I thought if Stephanie can do it...I can too!
When I have startitis and a bunch of projects on the needles, I do this: I will either buy the yarn for the new project or place the new pattern in a spot where I will see it every day. But I don't touch it. I have to make a deal that I have to finish X number of projects before I start this project (or anything else). This works for me.
(However, I have learned that I can NOT get the yarn, pattern and needles in the same spot because then I think - oh, if I cast on, that won't count - and then - if I work the first few rows, that won't count - and suddenly I have another project on the needles!)
What is the yarn on Adamas? I love the color.
Adamas is gorgeous! But I'm really liking Seraphim...it might be just the thing for the laceweight I recently acquired.
I've been on a finishing kick lately, too. I recently finished Clapotis (languishing for a year) and a panta (in a bag for at least three months). I'm down to just two lingering WIPs - Fetching (one of two finished), and the Party Lace Scarf. I think I'm going to frog the latter, actually. Then there's my hubby's sweater, which I'm hoping to have done in time for his bday (in three weeks or so). It's totally doable, but daunting...I'm using EZ's bottom-up seamless sweater technique for the firs time and it's almost time to join everything. I'm sure it will work out, it's just...daunting.
It feels good to finish, though, doesn't it?
By the way, I was not giving advice to the Harlot. :) Just sharing what I do. I can easily contract startitis, but I have to force myself into finishitis. :)K
I'd start with whichever project will be the quickest to finish up -- it may give you some momentum to move on to the next WIP. Or, it won't, but at least you'll have one completed!
Very brave to post even a portion of your list. I have quite a number of daunting projects stuffed into my UFO bag, and I'm afraid to open it.
And I can't wait to hear what you decide to do with the MS3 shawl. I knit to that point where one makes a decision, and I stopped knitting. Paralyzed by choice....
And of course, the real true deep-down vote always goes to Joe....
Oh, just cut the steek, already. You can do it fine without sewing. Really and truly. I did it - cold stone sober. There will even be photos forthcoming, but the dog getting sprayed by skunk kind of scuttled those plans last night.
I would suggest alternating between two or three of the projects givens your multi-tasking nature...the project you most enjoying knitting, the project that would be the quickest to finish, and the project that is weighing most heavily on your mind. I know that given the nature of life and the nature of knitting those three projects won't be the same every time you go to knit (maybe today the gansey weighs most heavily on your conscience but by Thursday it could be the Mystery Stole) but that just ads spice and variety! Or just start something new...you know you want to. [insert evil laugh here]
Well, you could always try the "an hour of work, an hour of play" method -- if you diligently knit on Joe's sock for an hour, then you can do yours for an hour. You could also intersperse this with finishing the projects that are so-close-you-can-almost-taste-it close to completion.
I have not *started* MS3, nor am I ever likely to, given all the deadline knitting I have going on, or not yet going on, as the case may be.
My usual way of dealing with all I have unfinished is to vacillate between this project and that, or maybe this one instead, or ooooh this one, and in the end feel completely overwhelmed, not knit a stitch and wind up eating ice cream or something. Not helpful to you, I realize, unless you were looking for someone to help you feel better about that option, in which case, I'm your woman.
I recently took inventory as well. More than I expected, although I don't have many sweaters and lace on the needles.
Knit on, dear Harlot. Knit on.
I'm with you on the finishing kick! I just finished a blanket, and am hoping to finish my Icarus this week. After that, there will only be 2 projects on the needles (the Mystery Stole is one of them, and I agree completely about not being able to take it traveling) and I suspect I will be feeling an urge to cast on something new... (Bee Fields is calling me, too.)
AHHHHHHHHHH, your to do list overwhelms me! It's all so beautiful and complicated (except for your sock which is perfectly simple and intuitive.)
I can't believe you will be withing 100 miles of my house, I smell a road trip!
Ummmm September looks HECTIC... oh my goodness - how do you keep up??
Ha! I have more WIPs than you do! There, does that make you feel better? No? OK, then my advice is to spend tonight working on Joe's gansey. Tomorrow, since you were so virtuous tonight, you may cast on for a new project, but only with stash yarn.
After that, go hog wild. Buy more yarn, cast on for six new projects by Sunday night, order 2 or 3 or 23 new shawl patterns, get a flock of Shetlands for the backyard (they're small). Face it, you will anyhow. These bouts of guilt and being-a-responsible-adult never last long, at least in my experience.
Besides, school starts soon, yes? That means you will then have all the time in the world to work on old and new projects.
Unless you want to think about a new sweater for Rhinebeck. Or about the Christmas knitting. But you didn't hear me say that.
You're so brave to go through and publicly display those projects. My unfinished stuff is sitting in a big Rubbermaid bin, and it'll stay in there if it knows what's good for it.
And that Wollmeise sock? Oh man. I have two skeins at home, and just ordered 3 more (plus about eleven million sample skeins), but won't get those until September. I desperately want to cast on for some knee socks, but have other deadline projects in the way. Until then, I'll just keep petting the yarn, and waiting for the rest to come in..
Okay dude. You have knit yourself and the girls stuff since you first started spinning the wool for that gansey. Joe deserves at one thing before your anniversary and since both his socks and the gansey are grey, I suggest you get your gears on them before March. I agree with Denny. If you are forced to knit with grey in March, you are going to want to poke your eyes out with giant size 15mm knitting needles.
It's going to be a cool evening. Bring the gansey to work on in the car. It'll keep your lap warm.
It'll also make up for the fact that I'm guessing your admission that you'll need to spin more yarn for it is as close as we're gonna get to actual spinning this Tuesday.
I've been sitting here wondering if I should point this out. You may know it and are ok with it. If you don't know it, well, oblivion can be a good place. I gotta say it...those Kauni sleeves...they don't match.
I was wondering what happened to the Adamas shawl...just figured that you finished it and didn't post about it! I remember when you started it because I had just ordered the pattern and yarn for it. The yarn is becoming something else and although I think the pattern is beautiful, I wasn't ready for lace with that many holes when I bought it and now it is pushed way down on my priorites. Guess that happens sometimes, especially when Anne's Bee shawl is out there...hehe:)
I hate to keep harping on it, but can we please, please, please get you to come to Dallas (or even somewhere in greater DFW) on Sept. 17? I'll bake cookies for you and your wonder-publicist if it'll help persuade you! :D
Oh no Harlot - Renee the Sequel is right! Those Kauni sleeves are not "matchy matchy". Can you live with this?
Sneaky trick for Joe's grey sock: sneak just a touch--two or three stitches, here or there, in the foot portion, so that it won't show, but WILL keep you awake. I've even been known, faced with the same problem, to take thrums and knit them into the pattern along with the "real" yarn, then take them out after he's stopped screaming.
You've inspired, delighted, and enthralled me yet again! Thank you!
Thank you very much for posting pics of your MS3! It's as lovely as I imagined it would be. Clue 5 waits for me -- starting that tonight, most likely.
As a knitter with at LEAST fourteen projects on the needles and at least one of those being debt knitting (i.e. -- promised to someone who is waiting on it, given in lieu of an actual, finished gift for Father's Day), two being deficit knitting (i.e. -- for babies already born, though nobody knows I'm knitting for them, so it isn't technically debt) and three being deadline knitting...
well, there's no way i should have cast on for a pair of socks for myself this weekend just 'cause i like the yarn and wanted to see how it would knit up.
Don't tell my knit creditors.
I just did this yesterday a whole "current rotation" knitting role call. I'm trying to get the knitting organized as I am getting a whole room for it and my computer but I keep seeing needles sticking out of projects...I don't think I want to know the whole truth.
What? Only two shawls on the needles? Maybe you should check out this one, too..
And when you get done checking it out, finish Joe's gansey. Just do it.
I'm trying to finish two pairs of socks, a Clapotis, a baby jacket, a pair of gloves on 0's, Ms. Starmore's St. Brigid sweater, and a Solveig Hisdal cardigan (knit on 2's and needs steeking, what posessed me?!). Preferably before the Finger Lakes Fiber Arts Festival, which you should totally come to, in September. (Autumn in upstate NY! Come on! Well, it'll probably be raining...)
Wanna race? :-)
Ahem. Why not call it the Kauni Pullover? Then you'd only have neck ribbing to do.
Nice to know I'm in such elevated company with WIPs. (Just sounds so much better than UFOs!) I need to make a list for myself. I'm not sure I'm ready to post it on my blog, though. And besides, there are three birthdays next month for which I have knitting to do, none of which I've started. That should help temporarily subdue my startitis!
Oh. Now I see why -- the mismatched stripey area down the front. So, I say, tack a nice embroidered ribbon vertically onto that section to cover up -- oh, never mind.
Start a sleeve for the gansey. Sleeves are portable knitting. If they're supposed to be knit from the body, ignore and graft later.
Sorry I forgot to take the Kauni home... 'splain me later what I'm supposed to do and I'll pick up the Kauni and do it, or I'll bring the sewing machine to you.
Lynn: You do not have more WIPs than Stephanie. Trust me on this... no one does. This is just a small sampling of her hot-list. Can someone please send instructions for crab-stitch? The bird sweater, long languishing, has a half-completed edging in a long-forgotten stitch...
I admire your dedication to your WIPs and taking stock of them (even if it is not all of them accounted for up there). Knowing what you're dealing with is half the battle! I think both the Kauni cardigan and the gansey look beautiful, they'll be worth the WIP struggle for sure.
Wait, I'm good at this. I'm good at giving advise to others on what they should do, not so good at figuring out for myself. Let's see, it isn't really that bad, certainly not unattainable.
Finish the one that's closest to being done, I would say the Kauni cardigan, which is to die for, BTW,(or is it two dye for?, whatever, it's beautiful.) Finishing just one of the projects right away will lighten the load considerable.
Start the washing process of the wool for the gansey, while the weather is still good for drying out doors.
Work on the MS3 after you finish the Kauni, ( I am about as far as you are on the shawl, there's no rush on that.)
Take the socks and Adamas for traveling projects.
There you go. See, no problem. Easier said than done, I know. I said, I KNOW.
OH - and for Joe's Gansey, I know you made up the pattern from your gansey book as you went along, but please please please can you write down the pattern for us so we can make a Joe's Gansey for our significant others? My husband Paul totally needs a Joe's Gansey for our 15th anniversary! And since I've never made a gansey before, maybe this will be MY olympics project in 2008. Yep - coming soon!!! Thanks again Stephanie! (can I possibly comment one more time today....) I told ya - I don't know what to do with myself.
I love the Bee Shawl... I want one! :)
If you bind off on Joe's sweater- he has a perfectly nice vest hee heee :)
Nice try. Did you really think you could distract us?
Tuesdays are for spinning.
The only reason I haven't started the Bee Shawl yet, it frightens me a little. I've never done that much lace before. But you, dear Harlot, must finish that Gansey!
OKay...the Kauni is just too beautiful not to finish...but I think I'd get Joe's socks done first. A. It's only a small dose of gray.
B. It will make him forgive you for being late on the gansey
C. When you're done with the socks, start the shawl... and start the whole evaluation process over again!
Love it and kiss it and call it George -- Classic Warner Brothers! I love it! That made me smile when I desparately needed to. Thank you.
My father is going to Germany in a month,and an Oma who knits socks waiting for him there.What are the chances i can get them to.......................... a. find this yarn b. bring a ton of it home to ME!!
will keep u posted.
PS the yarn basket of unloved projects is overflowing here too, you are not alone.
You asked for a suggestion, here's what I do.
When I have something I want to finish but am feeling a little unmotivated, I institue the reward knitting program. I set goals and timelines, (I am truely this anal, even seeing this written down I'm adequately embarressed), and each day if I reach the goal, I reward myself with the project I really want to be working.
During my last baby blanket, the last 10 inches were making me homicidal, so I instituted a rule, for every inch I knit, I got to work on the exciting! new! socks! for an inch. Or, if I spent all day Wednsday and Thursday knitting the baby blanket, Friday was new! exciting! sock! day.
While I have an ever growing stash, I have only one unfinished item right now. The Reward knitting is kind of silly, but it really works for me.
I thought I was Queen of UFOs, but I may have just been demoted to Lady-in-Waiting. It was the gansey that tipped me over the edge. You were knitting that when I first started reading your blog - if you ever finish, I may have to break up with you! Or buy you a case of beer. Wait, I'm poor - a six-pack.
OMG OMG!!! You're knitting with Wollmeise!!! A stage of my mission to infect the knitting world with Wollmeise has been accomplished. Now I have to move on to another level...who should be the next victim? :-p
Also you love looney toons one of my main inspirations for becoming an actress. How awesome!
I'd say suck it up and finish the Gansey, but Rams, Rachel H and Presbyteria have way too much fun torturing you about it. :-)
They are all gorgeous (okay maybe not the boring socks).
Do what makes you happy.
I HATE having unfinished projects piling up. I am usually very good at not having stash, but having one project at a time - maybe two, if one is difficult, so that I can have one simple one to work on. Right now I have three unfinished sweaters looking at me! Eek! Plus, yarn in a bag for another one (the Rogue sweater, can't wait!) I've decided to organize my work seasonally; which can I wear first, so needs to be done first? That seems to be working, but I can't buy any more yarn. I must say, you have the prettiest unfinished projects ever. And your reasons for not finishing them seem reasonable. I also understand the need to finish the gray socks now, tho my husband didn't get it at all. Ah well.
I love the Mystery Stole. I can't believe I missed the deadline (by mere HOURS) to sign up. Ah, well, there's always next year, right?
sigh... wouldn't you know it? there's finally a yarn harlot event close(ish) to home and i can't be in aurora as it is the first night of class with my brand new husqvarna mega-quilter! grrrr! knitting vs quilting is a viscious battle, but tonight quilting must win. anyhow, enjoy it muchly those of you able to be in aurora this evening.
I cannot tell you how happy I am that you are coming to Virginia. Yay!
I'm so glad to see I'm not the only one with stashed WIPs! I have two questions I'd love your input on because I'm turning them over in my mind right now and haven't a clue - do you do a jogless color join on the sleeves of your fair isle (or hide the jogs in the underarm), and will you block the Kauni cardi before you steek it? If you have time to answer, that's great, if not - google's my friend! :o)
I'm sure I am being comment redundant, but let's be real. The sock for you=done deal, you carry it around, you knit on it. Just keep that as is. Work on the Adamas, it is pretty, you can use it on these cooler evenings and honestly, until it is cold enough to wear it, you won't be really motivated to finish the Kauni Cardigan, we both know this. In three weeks, when we have a cold blast, you will have that thing finished just in time for the Indian Summer that follows. I have nothing to say about Mystery Shawl. Maybe if you commit to one sunlit hour each morning with your coffee (in a travel mug with a lid, placed just out of arms reach so it doesn't get knocked over and stain the shawl), you will finish it in time to gift it to your mom for Christmas. NOW-after you finish your socks you cannot start another pair until you finish Joe's. No cheating. They will knit up in no time, and I know. I knit Cookie's German Stockings in short order for someone with big feet. Well, bigger than mine. And we both know: The gansey will get finished when you suddenly, with no reason that you can see, get inspired to finish it. Until then it waits. Besides, you don't want it to feel like drudge work, you want to knit inspiration and love into every stitch. There you go.
My vote would be for Joe's gansey. That's a guilt vote (having just cast on a new baby sweater), as I promised myself not to cast on anything else till I had finished/worked on a second sleeve for my sister's fiftieth birthday sweater...
I've had to admit to myself that I have to restrict the number of WIPs I have to 3 or 4 because otherwise I start to feel terror!! (Terror seems like an extreme word I know - but it really freaks me out!)
I finished the Mystery Stole on the weekend and it's worth persevering with. My next project is scary so I'm just going to knit socks in the meantime.
I think I'm the wrong person to ask. I just finished a (worsted-weight) lace wrap/shawl thingie I started almost 2 years ago ... well, finished except for blocking. Still, I think I'd do as much as I could stand of the Joe socks and take breaks with the cool plain socks and the shawl.
Somehow this makes me feel better about the sweater I've never finished for my husband; I keep starting new projects. I knit relatively slowly and I know you knit lightning fast, and whenever one of your projects disappears from the blog, I think "Man, she's finished that already" and I feel slow and have dashed knitter esteem. Now I know it's your harlot-y way. Perhaps I'll put those sweater pieces together and knit up that collar and be done...or not.
Thanks for the Houston update--we'll be there!
I see Lee Ann beat me to it: "Tuesdays are for..."??
Oh, oh, Virginia, that's close to Maryland! I'm calling babysitters right now! And then I need to figure out a way to fight Washington DC traffic during rush hour...
I was freakin' about my ms3 and being behind too..but I have heard so many people feeling this way..and it takes the joy away so I dropped the freakin' out thing and work on it when I can be LEFT ALONE....it really is a joy to do isn't it? I love the mystery of it. Your sock is yummy...so love the colors...and Adamas is amazing! Oh oh, now I want to start that too...crap, already have 4 shawls on needles as it is!!!
Your WIP list is completely within reason to me.Way to go for putting Joe's Guernsey in the list, that took guts to own up to!
I always have at least 5 projects going, usually one for every knitting/traveling occasion, I also suffer from ADKD(Attention Deficit Knitting Disorder)so I have to trick myself to get things done.One week of project monogamy is all it takes to get me fired up to finish something else or sometimes to start and finish an entirely different something else...
I noticed you have a blank spot for Sept 17 on the tour page between Wichita and Houston. Are you coming to Oklahoma City on Sept 17?
We enjoyed your last visit!
I know what you mean about socks and having no will to live. I'm stalled on the Big Black Socks for Socks For Soldiers. These things are huge, and there isn't even a cable to break the monotony. It's going on the plane to Toronto with me tomorrow. I plan to visit your Lettuce Knit in the morning of the 28th. Your descriptions make it sound like a fun place, and I need a ball of wool for my Travel Afghan.
The socks are great,but the shawls are absolutely breathtaking. Let's see, a little math...
By the time I've been knitting as long as you have, and can reasonably hope to be as good at it as you are now, I'll be 85. Yup. Completely doable.
Please don't tell me knitting gray mens socks is like knitting black mens socks. Here I was thinking gray was going to be better. Would navy be a better colour choice? Brown? I have a really bad feeling about the inspirational quality of mens socks.
I was just saying the other day on my blog how much of a Project Whore I am and now I know I'm in good company. With about 3/4 of the world of knitters I would guess.
At least your UFO's/WIP's are on the needles. I have 5 sweaters with the yarn still in hanks all calling my name (actually one of them is bit*hing quite loudly that it was supposed to be knit for a dear friend a year ago) but I have no will to knit anything but socks, socks, socks. I must confess I have become a card carrying sockaholic and can't seem to get off the sock knitting jag. Is there any hope for me?
I agree with the "least work required" theory. If a little work will take something off the to-do list, try to get that little bit done and relish the sense of accomplishment. (And if Ken is going to help with the Kauni, all the better!)
But if something on your to-do list is crying out to you, heed its call. You'll likely make much better progress on that one, even if it's ridiculously more complicated that a basic half-finished sock that has fallen silent.
i have one lone pota.. pomoto... potomou .. well, you know. one of em. perhaps i'll frame it.
Learn to finish what I begin. Learn to finish what I begin. It's such a curse - this love for yarn. *sigh*
Hooray for East High in Wichita! 2pm book signing/chat/sock knitting will give us plenty of time to take you for a great dinner with a good pint or two. Yay!
Well, you are farther on the Mystery Stole than I am. And it was your encouragement to turn off the e-mails that got me to sign-up the second time.
Wollmeise, she's great, isn't she?? I have 9 skeins and haven't even cast on with one, yet. I've got so many other things that I'm trying to finish. *sigh* I gotta knit me some Wollmeise.
Mom and I are lusting after your plain socks and the cardigan. So gorgeous... My precccious... (smacks Gollum away) Back off Gollum!!!! Pardon Gollum, he hasn't had his yarn fix in a couple days...
Sorry, no helpful suggestions from here--I am right in the boat with you except that I have finished my mystery stole. And, I am not traveling everywhere so I don't have an excuse for not getting stuff done. (except that new, exciting yarn keeps wandering into my house.)
That said, I have tried, in the past, making a list of projects and crossing each one off as finished, but that does not prevent that exciting new yarn from wandering in.
Here's what I'd do: Your socks first, cuz they're yummy and fall is coming. Quick knit, instant gratification, easy ego boost to move on.
Kauni Cardigan...it's so dern close. You'll be done before you know it.
Pink shawl thingy...cuz it's half done too.
Grey sock...they'll likely be quick too and you can just forget about them and move on.
Save the mystery stole and the gansey for when the days get shorter and you feel like being inside more.
The Kauni Cardigan first, it's so close that if you just give it a small amount of undivided attention it will be done.
Then the Mystery Stole cause you won't be able to concentrate on much else with that lingering sense of being behind... speaking of behind I'm still mid clue3 :(
Come to Oklahoma City on September 17th! It's on the way to Wichita from Texas, and it was fun last time, don't you remember? We didn't have any beer, but we did sing you a song! I'll have more fiber this time, too! I promise!
My Bee shawl kit arrived while I was away. What can be better than that, eh?! Now, I just have to stop looking at it or I'll be casting it on to the detriment of my own WIPs. Which now I have to catelogue for the new blog. Sleep is overrated, even in August.
Good Luck. Never disclose all the WIPs. You know they only encourage more to "appear".
Now I'm conflicted! After extolling the benefits of mismatched sleeves on my Kauni, I see your matched sleeves and really like them. Hmmmmm. Do I go ahead as planned with randomness or seek the beauty of symmetry? I dunno. I did just hear from someone who finished and blocked her Kauni -- it got very soft and fluffed up nicely, which is very inspiring! She loves wearing it!
Joe's gansey -- because he's waited long enough (and frankly, his socks are boring!) -- I'm thinking that once he gets the gansey, he'll realize that life (and socks) can be much more exciting!
I'm surprised the the Kauni hasn't sent you screaming into the night...
On my to-do list: lots of finish-that-and-mail-it-already's...
Oh, and a sweater from Runway Knits. For me.
Always easier to prioritize someone else's abbreviated list of WIPs than my own (this gets windy):
Kauni: Invite Ken and his sewing machine over for dinner, beer and great company. :b
Tuesdays are for spinning. Insert Ken's comment here.
As your traveling heats up, you will need alternative socks to preserve The Sock for photo ops throughout. Pack Joe's sock in your carry on and check yours with your luggage. No other sock options. Reverse and repeat.
Then August RSC socks.
When BSG returns in the fall, work on Adamas. A bit of a lame connection, but worth a chuckle.
Which leaves MS3. Finishing it is a mystery to me.
PS-care to start a WIP-off? After the Knitting Olympics, it would be much easier...
Herein lies the problem. It's not a matter of choosing good over evil, it's choosing among the wonderfully fantastic. I'd go for Joe's socks first. You could work off some of the guilt for not yet finishing the gansey by doing something for him and it's a slog so you would feel a real sense of achievement. Good luck with that!
Herein lies the problem. It's not a matter of choosing good over evil, it's choosing among the wonderfully fantastic. I'd go for Joe's socks first. You could work off some of the guilt for not yet finishing the gansey by doing something for him and it's a slog so you would feel a real sense of achievement. Good luck with that!
I have a poncho that just needs the neck bound off and nother that needs seemed. I was going to do it today at nap time, but talking to my mom on the phone was much more fun!
I have a sweater from my hubby that I haven't even started, and socks too..... :)
Oof, I am so glad you posted this. As always, it seems to run parallel to my own life, only I'm about a century behind in actually knitting things. Mostly what I have is stash-- a large stash that reproaches me since I've only knit about 12 pairs of socks since April when I rediscovered the knitting obsession. But, see, I can see what that large amount of yarn will be SOME DAY.
My mother, she of the "I buy wool as I need it and not until then" mentality got pretty snarky with me over the weekend about my large stash. See if I give HER any more socks.
It's hard to get to all of the projects, finish them up, without starting two or three or more in its place. I am finding that is the hardest (read most depressing) thing about Ravelry is that it makes it harder for me to ignore the vast mountains of WIPs that I haven't consigned to frogging or finishing. There are 8 that I have in there now, and I try to add one (either an old one I've just found or a new one) only after I finish something. Hard going.
Contests! It's amazing what an actual deadline will do for you. I recently finished and entered 5 items in the Iowa State Fair, 4 of which would probably still be unfinished right now but for the deadline. (1 was finished with a birthday deadline.) Maybe we should start and actual contest, with a "send in your knitting and be rewarded" kind of thing?
You could convince one of the girls that if they knit on their Dad's socks, it will show how much they love him. It might even work for the sweater...
Well, it's worth a shot.
Sigh. I know how it is. Considering that I always have about seventeen irons in the fire with every other aspect of my life (I'm an artist paying the rent with graphic design and doing my own work the rest of the time), I try to keep my knitting disciplined: only one or two projects at a time.
Most of the time that works, but right now, because of a fit of complete madness, I'm working on a dress knitted with Euroflax linen on US 2 needles. It'll be embroidered (someday). I'm only on the yoke so far.
So needless to say, there are about two dozen patterns that I'm eyeing hungrily right now...
Just knit what you want. When the cold sets in and you come down with finishitis, you'll wipe all those WIPs out.
thanks for sharing -- I try to stop at around five projects at a time and you make me look quite restrained!
You're much farther along on the Mystery Stole than I am. I keep getting distracted by socks and wristwarmers (which are just socks without a heel but with a thumb gusset).
I'm just glad I'm not the only one...except that all of your WIPs are lovely and mine all look like butt. I blame summer heat and other life stuff at the moment.
If you're truly stymied, then maybe you should have a reader poll to see what you should finish first instead of deciding yourself? Of course, then you'd really have to commit...so I don't blame you if you think it's a bad idea.
I may have a solution for your mystery stole traveling with beads dilemma. I haven't seen the patterns--found out about it a day late:(, but if you google Tacky Bob (I got mine at a local needlework store) you'll find a handy dandy little guy who keeps beads from rolling all over the place!
This might work for you if the beads are added individually (and you really want to take it on an outing).
Bee shawl??!? I missed a Bee shawl???!?!?? Please, please speak to me of this Bee shawl. And always remember that if time is an imaginary construct, deadlines are doubly so. If you don't have to worry about things like the Pink Magic Potato Fairy, you certainly don't have to worry about no stinking deadlines.
What if for the Mystery Stole you started using less & less beads so that it made a sort of fade? Then you could knit on it more readily. But who am I to talk I have a sweater that only needs it sides sewn up that has been waiting for four months. Did I mention it was a baby sweater? Pathetic, really.
If I'd finish the heel on a Plymouth yarns sock pattern at home, I could then take it as my on-the-go project. (I lose track of my count too easily and must concentrate.) I'm stuck with dishcloth after dishcloth and hats and scarves as my finished projects while I have numerous sweaters (and more socks) waiting impatiently to be cast on. Your projects are at least substantial in time, skill and degree of difficulty, and thus will be more impressive when finally finished.
And I loved the Bugs Bunny/Daffy Duck/Abominable Snowman reference. ("I will rub his feathers and stroke his bill...") What a better way to spend a Satuday morning than to eat sugary cereal in flannel jammies, glued to the t.v. for Bugs Bunny cartoons? (Well, now I could knit while I watch them and maybe start and finish the more substantial projects...)
Good luck conquering the UFOs.
Don't give up on the Mystery Stole - I've just finished mine and it is definitely worth the effort!
I feel somewhat better knowing that the MS3 is a pain in your, er... needles too. I have decided that mine is a lovely side table decoration. I've lost interest totally in it and may never do anything more than dust around it. I've even lost the guilt associated with a project tossed aside. That my friend is pretty serious.
well, now that you mention unfinished projects, lets see how many i have. one, two, three, four, five, six, seven... you get the point.
another good reason to learn how to knit by mind control.
Seriously, what do I have to do to get you to Fort Worth, TX on that empty September day in your calendar! :)
Dear Stephanie: I have no answers for you. Just one question (in two words) that I almost hate to ask: Stealth Knitting?
Ah, so *that's* why you refinished the bedroom floors: background shots for the blog!
(Love the socks and the russet shawl.)
I am drooling over the Kauni cardigan. I can't imagine going near that thing with a pair of scissors. The idea of it is so frightening to me. Who is the sweater for? For you, I hope!
Wow are you busy, dear lady. I must say I love that Wollmeise (did I spell that right?) colorway. Falls and wines are speaking to me now. Plus, I knit one sock of a pair from your generic sock recipe, so now I can pretend we're knitting the same thing. First time *that's* happened.
Don't feel bad about MS3. I'm only on clue 3. My excuse is that I have a 2 year old and a 5 year old, therefore I am only able to knit MS3 at 5 in the morning. Needless to say this doesn't happen that often.
Put it off until September. Then, say "September is for finishing." Vow not to start anything new (other than the travelling sock) until you've finished everything.
That's what I'm doing now. Except it's August. And I'm lying.
Bee Shawl? What Bee Shawl? Did somebody say there's a Bee Shawl?
Oh, sorry, we were concentrating on your UFOs. Well, the "shove a plain sock in your bag and go" socks always seem to get done without really trying, so they don't count. (They are some gorgeous socks though . . . nice handpaint!) You can't work on MS3 because I'm even further behind than you are, though I'm loving knitting it. (I'm mid-way through Clue 3, with a bazillion tiny beads lost in the carpet somewhere. Feel better?) The gansey even feels overwhelming to me at this point (I think it's the squirrel . . . ). However, you do owe Joe some first anniversary knitting love, so I think that:
1. You must finish Joe's dress socks.
2. The Kauni. You're so close, and finishing will make you feel better. Besides, I want to watch you steek.
3. Adamas. Only to delay your progress on #4, below, so that I don't feel like a complete loser.
4. MS3, but only after #s 1 through 3 are finished. That way I can catch up with you.
Unless I succomb to the temptation to Google "Bee Shawl." Wicked Harlot!
Hey Ms. Harlot, there's more info on the Los Angeles event posted here:
I've heard some rumblings that the Taper might not hold us all, since it only seats about 225. When I asked the lady who called me back about my reservation if she thought the Taper was big enough, she seemed to think that there weren't enough people concerned with a knitting book to fill half the space. She's in for a surprise, eh? ;)
Lately I've taken to frogging any projects which aren't finished in a timely manner. As a result I've only the MS3 (still on clue 3, doing the symmetrical version) one sock and a current sweater, which should be finished tonight. But before I start sounding too cocky I must also mention that I have lots of squiggly, curly yarn from the projects which never were.
I ended up at the Loopy Ewe through your link - that's not the "Oh dear!" - it's a wonderful shop. I found some lovely 4ply merino for socks - I am not a sock knitter - but this wool perfectly matched some 8ply merino I bought from a local firm, The Wool Company to make a jumper.
So I went to buy this sock wool from the Loopy Ewe and then realised it was Australian wool and I am in NZ so I thought it made more sense to look at the Australian site to save some shipping and on the basis of buying local. I found their site and they were out of the particular sock wool I wanted anyway. But somehow I ended up with some sock wool anyway - 2 gorgeous skeins, (did I mention I'm not a sock knitter), and also several books.
And that is the "Oh Dear!" - not that I am blaming anyone for leading me astray *chuckle* but I may not be reading any of my knitterly blogs for the next month or so while I pay this one off - and I may have to go to Yarnbuyers Anonymous to get me back on the straight and narrow.
I love all your WIP - esp the plain socks, and the gansey. Kauni is on my wish list for when I have less little people around and a bit more time.
does anyone know of a place online that has good kits for colorwork projects? I'm ready to try it, and I need SOME kind of self-bribe to finish what I'm working on....
Just the normal way a knitter's project list looks. Admitting to a few, trying to pretend there aren't a few more hiding in various places.
You have got me wanting to do that Kauni so much. Luckily, I have to wait for the budget to open up before I can order the yarn.
Don't pull Ken into your whorling vortex of unfinished-ness. I want to see the progress on his niece's sweater.
Oh, and then I would suggest finishing Joe's socks first, because it sounds like he needs them. Then your sock, because it is really pretty. AND, then you'll have two things done! Then the Kauni, because I can't wait to see how the slashing, I mean steek, goes.
If it makes you feel any better, I still have yet to finish the first clue from MS3. *hangs head in shame* I'm so very behind . . .
Oh, that Wollmeise is absolutely gorgeous...I love the colorway!
DUDE! I have the answer to your Mystery Stole anxiety: the lantern rouge! This was the prize for the person in the Tour de France who comes in last (but within a certain percentage/time frame of the winner). (I don't know if they give this prize any more, but I love it.)
Seeing as how I'm only on clue 3, and I can't seem to get more than 5 rows done per day (and school is starting tomorrow), I've told myself I'm competing for the lantern rouge. Makes for a much more enjoyable knitting experience!
Tonight is my night to go through the UFOs and stash and see what I want to give away at SnB tomorrow night... so we'll see what lurks behind the projects I'm supposedly working on. Good luck with finishing!
The UFO parade is to distract us from remembering that Tuesdays Are For Spinning, yes?
And I do like the matching sleeves on Kauni. :)
Wheeeeee. She thinks that "some" of us may have "A!!!" project to mention. I whoop, I laugh, I wipe my eyes....You are tooooo amusing.
Okay. (Getting grip) How about the celery-colored mummy-wrap summer shell avec occasional leaf?
Just for openers. Since you brought up the gansey yourself. (And oh my. What day is it?*)
And beloveds-who-shall-be-nameless? Love it and hug it and call it George started as Steinbeck, honest -- Warner Bros. took it from there.
*S. Kate (1:19)continues to be one smart cookie
So many pretty projects and such little time to do them all.
It's only an 8 or so hour drive to Wichita from where I am.... if I had a car and not just a push bike.
You are further along than I am on the mystery stole - I have finished clue one!
Several years I forced myself to finish everything that I had started before moving on to something new. It was hard but in the end it felt so good. Now I try to not have more than a couple of things going at once. Usually something for charity and something for self or family. It works pretty well.
I must say that in a very strange turn of events I too will be in Seattle on September 14 and in Kansas on September 16. But not in Wichita, Kansas. Just plain vanilla Kansas. So close, and yet so far.
Since you're talking about forgotten knitting projects on the go, what happened to "the sock" you mention in your first book that Joe was knitting for you?
MS3 is beautiful. Looking forward to seeing the finished shawl.
Well, if it were me, there'd be more WIPS...
but besides that, I'd focus on one of the gray things for Joe (sweater or socks?) That way you can give him SOMETHING...and he'll feel all loved and stuff....
and then you can go play in color, which is where you really belong.
(Don't supposed you'd do the sleeves separately and seam them in? then they'd be portable....)
Shucks! I immediately went to your updated tour hoping to see Tulsa, Ok (Loops - my favorite lys) on Sept. 17th but it is still blank. Please. I know Oklahoma is not as beautiful as Canada and it IS HOT, but we will keep you airconditioned and share some of our local handpainted sock yarn!
I go by the mantra: whatever needs to get done will get done.
I know, pretty ordinary, but it works. You know the top contenders, what's important. Now, if it's not getting done, then does it need to? Today? There's always tomorrow... hmm, is that the problem?
Thank you Stephanie, I was feeling so guilty about starting a new project but you've reminded me that it's not about the end, it's about the journey. Is it okay if I totally scam this blog layout from you some time? I will credit you of course.
and ps- the Adamas looks as soft as butter and is going to be a wonderful shawl! Good job :)
Oh UFO's - I've got a gansey started for my husband that may never get finished unless he looses a whole bunch of weight or I find someone else with the right initials to finish it for [that's what you get when you knit the initials on the hem in the "traditional" way]. And then there are the car socks, the truck socks, the jeep socks, the ones in my purse, oh yes the shawl I started a year or so ago, and I can go on and on - but then so can most knitters - isn't that what we do? Keep the faith.
I have more WIPs than I care to count. 6 month old untouched for awhile FIRST sock, moebius cowl I started yesterday that has to be done by October, baby blanket for 3 month old baby (I don't remember who said it but that last 10 inches is a pain); a wonderful green scarf about 1/2 way done, a hat, a scarf I have yet to start and the two year old front of a sweater. And the stash DOES keep growing. These are the things actually on the radar...there are most definately more on the needles here, there and yonder. (and the emergency knitting bags in both vehicles with things in progress...for when I run out of here without the designated current project in hand)
And one question for my Canadian friends - what is a gansey? Is it a pullover sweater or a sweater vest?
Also so glad you will be in VA, dear HarLOTTA. Only 25 miles from my house. I WILL take a day off for that!
P.S. HarLOTTA - Do the boring grey socks and gansey first. They will finish up faster and whoever said the soul sucking thing about grey in March - SO true.
Make grey while the sun shines.
Melinda from VA
Oh, go ahead--cast on something new!
I think you ought to go and get Ann Hanson's Bee Fields pattern and the wonderfull Wooly Wonka Yarn that comes with the kit. It does great good for the morale as it is such a pretty pattern and to have it around is an incentive to finish MS3. Plus there's a lot of simple fondling pleasure associated with touching the lace yarn :-) at least that's what I keep on telling myself. Never mind I have added about 100 extra rows after clue 4 and recharted a bunch of stuff. I do love the gansey, and washing wool is a cathartic experience in which one mingles with essence du sheep, plus you may end up with extra yarn for matching mittens!
Perhaps there is a need for a 12 step program for people who tend to have "completion issues" that go beyong the SecondSockSyndrome. "Hello, my name is Painter and I'm a starter not a finisher...."
Those grey socks for Joe are the EXACT same color I made my very first pair of socks in! They also were for my husband, and his feet are big! I pushed on and on, and eventually I did finish them. They took forever, but they are still the most beautiful socks I have made, four pair later.
They were plain plain plain. But they made all socks a breeze to finish after them. Go ahead. Make is socks. Make his day.
P.S. SO excited about seeing you in L.A.!!!
Start with the quickest to finish first. That will give you a sense of accomplishment and make tackling the others so much easier. :o) (Says she with many UFO's herself, so do as I say not as I do). ;o)
Argh! I'm doing the mystery stole too, and I'm still only halfway through clue ONE. Thank the knitting goddess for lifelines...one in particular that I've ripped back to FOUR TIMES
I haven't started the Mystery Stole yet.
"Make grey while the sun shines"? Oof.
The GRAY SOCK-- You'll be so bored you'll just HAVE to finish it and get on with the rest! :-D
I have an emerald green pair like this... my favorite color, but having a problem finishing #2, because the pattern is getting boring. Seems to be taking forever and there is YARN OUT THERE calling my name (I won't let me buy it til the sock is done!
Somewhere along the way, someone in MS3 mentioned using OralB Superfloss (I think that is the name, it is made for peeps with braces) for the beading. You can thread a bunch of beads onto the fat part of the floss and it holds them in place while you slide one at a time down over the end of the floss that is semi-rigid (like fishing line). It works like a charm, no lost beads (says the one who gave up on beads cuz she lost 'em when pulling back to lifelines multiple times). I am so loving the pictures of the completed shawls, I willlll get mine finished soon (partway through clue 5). Of course, I have already signed up for another Mystery KAL. Not so bad you say, but this one is in German!! Good things knitting charts are just symbols cuz German to English translation tools on the internet come up with some funny expressions. Good luck with your WIPs, someday I want to be good enough to have so many things in progress.
don't you just love the Wollmeise? It's my new best friend too, although I call it Phred. I love how it feels and how it works up. And yes, I'm stalking Sheri's site daily until she gets more in.
Do what I do with housework: "mop the floor and THEN you can sit down and knit for half an hour", etc. Meaning, work on your "duty knits" for a certain period of time, then reward yourself with some fun knitting afterward. Works for me!
That's not too many projects. You just need to keep things interesting. :)
My problem with having a lot of projects is that I screw something up big time-I cast on for something else. Bored to death or something suddenly got too hard-same thing. I love the knitting procrastination!
Before we left on vacation, I was trying to figure out what WIP I should take with me. I had to move the stupid luggage off the bed to spread my WIPs out and, to be totally honest, that wasn't all of them. Arghh.
Since I just finished Clue 2 on the Mystery Stole, I decided that I did indeed need to work at it besides those very very rare occasions when I was sitting, by myself, when everyone else was sleeping or otherwise occupied. I got a very very small plastic ziplock bag (1" x 2" -- found it with one of my other WIPs) and put about 20 beads in it. I stick the crochet needle in and fish out one at a time. It seems to be working as it only took me a week to finish Clue 2.
I love your stuff. What a gift.
Hello from Germany - Wollmeise country! For once I feel good about being a Knitter in Germany :-) Yes, her yarn is absolutely brilliant. By the way, check out her blog - you'll find photos (and the free pattern!) of her stunning Moebius wrap in the typical Wollmeise colours, which I love! I have just finished knitting the wrap, and it looks beautiful.
PS Stephanie, I love your blog and your books!
what is it with men and the 'oh-my-goodness-i-need-a-nap-now' sock colors? I just had to give away a perfectly good pair of socks, US Men's 8.5, because Mr Wonderful would not wear them. They languished in the drawer for two years before I finally got "They're...too...there's too much going on". It was a gray and black and white jacquard print.
First off, considering you actually started Mystery Stole with another yarn (I believe it was Lane Borgosesia?), don't feel bad about being behind. I've only knit it once (using JaegerSpun Zephyr) and I'm still a few rows short of completing clue 6.
My technique is as follows: have one "on-the-go" project, that is easily transportable and fairly brainless (plain socks, Joe's socks), for traveling (bus, subway, car, whatever); have one project, perhaps a smidge less brainless, for knitting windows as they arise during the day (Adamas?); and finally have one "serious" project that requires my full attention for evening TV-watching knitting (Mystery Stole, Gangsey).
As a reward for completing any WIP, you get to cast on a new project (Bee Shawl, socks from Cat Bordhi's new book).
I hope to see a Montreal date on that tour page soon!
I have the same method for "forgetting" those projects that have lost my interest. I thought that if I actually kept track and knew the actual number of things that I have going, I'd actually work on finishing them, but it actually makes me find excuses for starting new things. "Oh that new one, it's a present, it doesn't count." "That one is a deadline knit, so it doesn't count." etc., etc., etc.
These are beautiful! I just made a similar list (not in blog-land, sadly), so I know how you feel. I decided to start with the item that would take the least time to finish, so I would make a dent in the UFO stash as quickly as possible. Incidentally, this is the same technique I use on out-of-control to-do lists: tackle the easiest tasks first, so that I accomplish something and create momentum to carry myself through the rest. :)
Can't wait to see what you decide!
While the weather is good, I'd spend a day washing the fleece. Take your sock and finish it while on squirrel watch (as the fleece is drying). Since it is for you , it will make you feel good to knit it after washing the fleece. Kills 2 projects and you get more fleece for spinning.
I was wondering what had happened to Joe's sweater. I FINALLY finished my husband's endless sweater this past spring. It took me 5 years.
I put aside MS3 and a couple of other things to finish projects up for the County Fair this weekend (still have to make fudge before 5). While searching for the other Adult Socks, Wool I found my nieces sweater from last Christmas (she was inconsiderate enough to grow ... er... breasts between being measured for said sweater and actually receiving said sweater, such that her mother wouldn't let her wear it and I had to frog it back and add a couple of inches and so it sits in the basket 1/2 done). I still also have my mother's birthday sweater sitting in the basket waiting for sleeves. And another pair of socks, because one of the projects for the Fair was "Child's Socks, Wool" for one of my other nieces and I can't send them to her without sending her sister some.
The wool for my own gansey is calling me.
I'm ignoring it.
Thank you for making me feel better about:
5 pairs of socks in the works (and new ball of yarn purchased and promised yesterday...)
1 pair of gloves (with envious thoughts of Michael Jackson's one glove look [the only thing about him of which I am envious...])
and the new vest yarn purchased yesterday for the Christmas request
oh and the alpaca and pattern for a shawl when I get up my nerve for lace
not to mention that I should knit a few more hats for preemies for our club's current charity work.
You are doing remarkably well ... in comparison -- though I give you points for still having to spin for the gansey.
So... short attention span or love of variety?
Every so often I like to regroup on projects as I get distracted and then overwhelmed. Like you, I am behind on the MS3, but do plan to complete it. You are so not alone!
Oh, I love all these UFOs. I am so, so, deeply validated and affirmed and comforted to know that others have so many unfinished things. The difference between me and you, Stefanie, my projects get abandoned because problems arise. Big groany problems. But, hey, once resolved (somehow), the completion is then an ever greater achievement than if there had been no problem!
P.S. Problem = mistake, as if you didn't know.
I love that sock yarn. The picture does not show off the gorgeous gleam. And I love the George reference.
Work on the gansey when it's colder--it's now a blanket. Finish cardigan--it will make you happy come chilly weather.
Rams, let's not forget shawl from the batt that was oh so purposefully spun randomly but ended up striping when the plan called for stripes (created on purpose) for the border only. Haven't seen that one since '05...
If the unfinished works are spread out all over - couldn't they sort of sneak up and surround you? Just kidding. Do socks first, then your cardigan and then the Mystery stole because you won't be happy if everyone else gets to see what it looks like before you do. Then Joe's cardigan and the rest during the indoor fall nights before the fire (or the TV, whichever is applicable).
No criticisms here. I decided to knit down the stash before the holidays (because I crocked up my ankle and have been stuck in a chair all summer). I have one alpaca sweater, one wool sweater modeled on a Highlander character's garb and two Noro sweaters, plus 4 scarves, a pair of gauntlets and attempt 31 at a pair of socks. Fortunately, my honey is too wise to ask why all the chairs are covered in yarn and merely moves something when he wants to sit down.
Knit the grey stuff for Joe, because he deserves it, and do it while you still have the greenness and brightness of summer around. Socks first, then the gansey ... finishing the socks and spinning the yarn for the gansey should buy you enough time so you'll be able to stand having the gansey on your lap (see, I am being careful to remember that you are not Southern and therefore not basking in the frosty AC). Once your winter starts, the boring grey will not be inspiring, and besides, you do get to spin. Wash the fleece on a day when you're super annoyed with the teens. It's a good way to get out frustration.
Shawl second. So you feel caught up.
Kauni third. Selfish reasons. We want to see it.
Selfish, that last.
Just because we know how to knit doesn't mean that we have to make all the knitted things in our families' wardrobes. If Joe wants plain grey socks, why waste knitting time making such a boring thing? Just buy some! Socks are cheap - much cheaper than hand-knits made with our precious time and retail-priced yarn. Knitting's supposed to be a pleasure, not a chore.
No suggestions -- just knitterly empathy. My projects on the needles. 1) multi-colored cardigan from Knitters 5 years ago. Needs ends woven in (despite my best efforts to knit them in as I went), steeks sewn and cut and button bands. 2) Lace scarf/shawl from Victorian Lace. Lovely, but requires concentration and alone time. 3) Rowan gansey type sweater started for husband in a dull taupe color -- needs TLC. 4) Vest started for husband in lovely Alpaca. The back is finished, but the calculations required to get the front vee right are boggling my mind. 5) Bettna cardigan almost complete. I love the yarn but suspect the garment will be a little shapeless. Allowed my sister the new knitter to suck me in on this one. 6) Toe up socks -- one complete, 2nd not even begin. I know there are others, but I don't want to bore you to death. Good luck! Jo
I love the "kiss it and hug it and call it George" comment!! My dh and I use that all the time (esp me), and most people have no idea what we're talking abt. Happens to us a LOT! Love to see others do it too!!
BTW, GREAT projects! I esp love the vanilla sock you did for yourself. Yes we are all wool pigs, esp us sock knitters.
It's the seventh wedding anniversary that you're supposed to give wool. The first is paper.
You've got plenty of time.
Start with finishing socks for Joe, that takes the pressure off the sweater. You can't finish the socks for you until you've taken 3 UFOs off this list. That's your punishment!
Marina - "Make grey while the sun shines" Yeah, it's corny. I couldn't help myself. Going back to work tomorrow and looking forward to hoards of little children. My brain is less substantial than undyed roving right now. Very soft and squishy.
Grey socks first. Snaps of cold and beautiful leaves is about time to get that gansey all done. It looks like it just needs sleeves and finishing around the neck (now that I've been told what a gansey is. Love new knitting knowlege - it's a fisherman's pullover down here in the US)
And in defense of all of us with the UFO's spilling out of every corner, it is actually GOOD for your hands, wrists and other knitting muscles and tendons to switch around every few days from one project to another. Different sized needles and a different type pattern is what I'm saying (not one size 2 needled sock to another size 2 needled sock) Keeps the carpal tunnel and other repetitive movement disorders at bay. This is a fact. (though I now feel like a co-dependent UFP enabler....)
I see you've booked Houston for the current tour. Austin's just up the road -- remember how much fun Austin was last time? If you come back to Austin, I'll be Hat Lady and I and the Hill Country Weaver Ladies will show you a great time.
Well Crap. I see that you're going to be in Seattle when I'm in Minneapolis. (I'll also be missing Weird Al in Puyallup that week. I am totally crushed.) As for the knitting endeavors, my pile looks much the same, and I've come down with a serious case of startitis. So I've gotten 2/3 of a new sleeve done (love the technique of doing sleeves for gauge), started a hat (needed something with color - should be done quickly), and really *neeeeed* to do a wedding shawl for my son's fiancee (Oregon Shawl). What would help right now is for a serious blizzard to happen which would keep me out of my garden.
I love the mystery stole so much, I can't wait to see how it turns out!
When I'm feeling overwhelmed I clean the kitchen......
I have no pity. You're talking to the woman who has not yet finished the crib quilt for her 34 year old son! My advice is to do the fun ones and bury the others in the back of a deep dark closet. I could squeeze some in with the crib quilt if you like.
What you need is a deadline. We just had our county fair and I finished four UFO's in two weeks! All of your projects look great and worth finishing. I bet that once the weather changes, some of those grey things will go quickly.. Aahh, the knitting weather of Autumn!
Which one of the beautiful WIP to work on ?? Whatever you little heart pleases to do at any given time and place . No preasure no stress-- Denny has it right though -- imagine working on gray in the winter ugg
Ahaha... I see Lisa G beat me to it up there... I was going to suggest that, for motivational purposes, you start referring to it as "Adama's Shawl." :D
Love the "George" bit in your post! My brother and I used to use a version of that phrase all the time. Except our is "I will love it, and pet it, and call it George." Thanks for the giggle and the flashback.
by the by -- IF you need date lines to get at it and "get er done" --Christmas is about 124 days away--no preasure or stress my arss eh ?
Ooooo-do the gansey first! It's fantastic!!! Or, how about this-tell yourself that you'll knit just one row of the gansey before you can move on to something else. (That always works for me in exercise. I tell myself that I'll do the first 5 minutes and then I just keep going.) You spun this yarn yourself-just go touch how soft it is-see, it's beautiful-just a few sts, OK?
Melinda-- In my circle of friends, we say, "A groan is as good as a laugh."
I'm going to quote your line at my first opportunity.
Steph-- finish that around-and-around top with the leaves. It'll be perfect for September in LA.
Man socks are boring (and by man socks, I mean socks for mans). Good thing you threw that cable in there... though they are still gray. I fully agree that if you were trying to do that in March you may have no will to live. Even worse might be trying to knit them in January in ALASKA in eternal darkness - one might think one was already dead... Mans should just realize that their socks will be INSIDE their shoes and UNDER their pants... who cares what color they are? And if they sit down for a beer after work (and their is no table to hide the socks under), then they'll have something to talk about, won't they?
Good luck with the WIPs. And don't neglect the neglected ones for too much longer as they might gang up and have a revolt. Definitely wouldn't want that!
Dear Harlot and readers,
I know many of you love the whit and light hearted tone of this blog as I do. My co-worker got an email today from one of her friends and she proceeded to print off for me what had her laughing so hard. We aren't able to look at certain site at work, Ebay being one of them. A mother has put her kids Pokemon cards up for sale. Her description of her trip to the grocery store and how she acquired the said cards is priceless, much like the harlots observations of life. The item number is 130144061675.
YOU KNIT WE SHIP
Hi everyone. We're funding a charity knitting project out of Toronto and Ottawa this year and we need knitters! Our first shipment for afghans for Afghans was a big success, but now we're focussing closer to home: we're knitting for Innu kids of Northern Labrador. The Next Generation Guardians, a group of Innu mothers trying to heal their community, have asked for our help. Air Labrador has generously offered shipping, and our deadline is November 20th. If you're interested, you can read more about our collection points, guidelines and deadlines at www.findingfortygatheringknitting.blogspot.com
I've been amazed at the compassion and enthusiasm of Canadian knitters - we'd love any comments and contributions!
Excuse me, flight attendant? Did someone just hijack this blog?
I love your new sock . . . and joe's sock is quite lovely. And there is no way in &^%$ that you only have two socks on needles in your house. I am sure if you multiple that by say 3 or 4, that number would be closer to the truth. Sorry hate to be a nudge.
BTW your anniversary is a scant month or so away and we still have not seen a wedding photo . . . not that I am counting or anything . . .
I don't blame you for giving up on some of the projects. But when I need to break down and get to work, I deny myself all other knitting projects until I get this done. Helpful, but at the same time, this blanket with it's bajillion squares are sucking the life out of me. It's kinda getting awful. But I only have.... 12 more to go, then I sew together the massive beast. RAWR!
We all feel your pain. Once upon a time, I would only have one project at a time, only enough yarn for that project. Then something in me broke (yarn sale), and I'm surrounded by projects and yarn. My room is warmer though! <3
Honey, you're not behind on the MS3. I shall be claiming that honor this year. I have my yarn all wound and my needles uncurled and my beads all picked out and all the clues printed out too.
I just haven't actually, you know, STARTED the blasted thing yet.
Plenty of time to catch up... right?
Sorry, I have to disagree with Diana. I LIKE knitting men's socks - well, socks for my husband. Granted, sometimes they are boring to knit, unless you make an effort to find something interesting about them. I am always on the lookout for new men's socks patterns - ones that will fit my picky hubby's foot, and won't bore me to tears. This is a constant challenge. It is also a challenge for me to knit socks for anyone else without hubby saying "when do I get another pair (sniff, sniff, whine)."
Joe's sweater and socks are at distinct disadvantage. They both appear in "murky man colors" You know the kind of colors that suck out your soul and are the only colors men will wear. (see "plain regular blue", "so green, it's black", "black aka can't see my hand in front of my face", "concrete grey")
go finish the stole... give the rest of us hope to come from behind. :)
Now, sock yarn doesn't count when buying yarn this year, right?, so I don't think it counts for knitting new projects, either! You've got to knit from your stash to use it up and you must have some sock yarn lying around somewhere. So, make as many socks as you can and use up that stash!!!
Whew! At least I'm not the only one who is behind the 8 ball on knitting. I have yet to download the last 3 clues to the mystery shawl. And I had such big plans for that to be finished. I also had big plans to handspin yarn for each of my 4 children plus the DIL, future SIL and other son's GF. Thankfully the youngest DD does not (and better not) have a BF right now. So far the spinning wheel has produced enough yarn for 1 1/2 kids. Where is the spinning fairy when I need her?
I swear I'm going to make my DH and those 2 sons of mine colorful socks one day. Grey, black and navy are not colors! I don't care if they choose shades of the those three or not, they're still not colors.
Keep on knittin'
Marina - feel free ;-) I agree with a groan is as good as a laugh.
Patty - Great day in the morning, was that e-bay thing funny. I wonder if she knits?
You are evil, you know that? It's not as if I don't have enough lace projects going a Mystery Stole and 2 lacy scarves, I had to go and order Adamas now too. You are an evil, wicked woman....are you by chance going to Rhinebeck this year?!
You know that whole universe seeking balance thing? I was feeling smug because I WAS keeping up with MS3. Then, 10 rows from the finish, I noticed a dropped stitch way back in Clue 4.
So you're not too far behind me.
AND I now covet Adamas. Enabler.
You have a variety of good bead suggestions...mine is to have a bunch of safety pins, each one filled with beads. You then fasten the beads to the edge of your knitting bag or even the stole or ball of yarn...whatever works. I have my stole in a tiny bag, so the pins are on the drawstring. Also, I made two beads of Fimo, poked the crochet hook point a little into one, the other end into the other and put holes crosswise through the ends of both, baked. I tied an eastic cord through the holes, so that I can poke the hook into its hole, and stretch the elastic to put the other bead on the end of the hook. No poking anything with that tiny hook! And I can put the row's beads on the hook and put the fimo caps back on and not lose them!
Oh, I'm so glad you mentioned Joe's gansey. Truth is I have been wondering about it's fate for a while now, however, it seems inpolite to ask in case it's one of those quiet knitting deaths that knitters never want to talk about and hope no one else remembers.
Suggestions: Do yourself up a beautifully formatted excel sheet of WIP. Make sure you schedule estimated progress down to the last stitch so that you feel organised, in control and just a little smug. It should then be safe to ignore everything for at least another 6 weeks without getting the guilts. Failing that, do what I do, bribe yourself with a beer every 100 rows. It may not go any quicker, but, you'll be much happier with the progress made.
I'm also behind on the Mystery Stole. Last wednesday I was on clue 4. I hunkered down for two days and knit like crazy and then the other days knit a row when I had a moment. Now I'm halfway through clue 7 hooray! I'm so close I can taste it but those short rows just get so so so long. I think I actually have 9 hours of knitting left. blech. Maybe I will finish this weekend.
I of course have no children, have a husband who is resigned to the fact that he is going to get no attetion until this thing is finished, and am a teacher and thus, am on vacation at the moment. Perhaps this kind of speedy clue completion might be trickier without those three things.
Keep going! You can do it!
This is interesting: the Scottish definition of gansey is "Guernsey Jersey". I've never owned a Guernsey; did have a Jersey named Molly Moo though. Your gansey is lovely, even unfinished.
Stephanie H-- the cows and the sweaters are both named after locations. A gansey is a traditional fisherman's sweater native to Guernsey, or thereabouts. It's tight, closely knit, usually plain on the bottom and fancy on top.
I googled it when Harlot mentioned it last year.
Molly Moo sounds lovely.
Hahaha... must be the season to review all our UFO's. Did you see the latest entry on Cat's blog? http://www.letsknit2gether.com/ Some have been lurking for a very long time!
I think I have a couple around here too.... but they are very well hidden!!
Oh, Stephanie, not only your blog is great reading, but also your commenters are funny people. Thanks for the laugh!
I would finish the Kauni first. I love this cardigan. If I hadn't completely and absolutely forbidden myself to buy yarn...well...I could just surf over to a nice little shop where I'v seen it...hhmmm...
Knit an inch on Joes Gansey sleeves everyday. You'll make progress and feel good and it looks like he deserves to have his sweater.
Keep the Wollmeise sock for travel knitting and don't stop to admire and hug it, because the yarn is simply beautiful, and Claudia (the Wollmeise herself) is a wonderful, creative and very very nice person. I love to watch her being successfull while having some Wollmeise yarn lying in my sock yarn drawer before it's all gone and bought from oversea fans. ;-)
Greetings from Germany,
The Kauni is inspiring. I've made it to somewhere on the neckline but stalled when I reached shaping, so I have to go back and concentrate. Brought my MS3 with me to central Africa as well but it's been in the suitcase the entire time. I couldn't decide whether to add that extra repeat to make it longer or not, so it's been neglected since Clue 4 or before...
So far I don't see any travelling on Sept 8 on the tour page... does this mean you'll be making it to the KW fair this year? :-o
Hey there! Did you know you've been nominated for several Blogger's Choice awards??? Including Best Blog of All Time! How cool is that?? Wait, don't freak out, it'll be ok. :D
Hey Steph-- I just heard on the radio (94.7 the Globe, Washington, DC) that "according to a new study, Toronto is the most boring city in Canada."
Based on Juno's recent visit and the ensuing travelogue, I think they might be a bit mistaken...
(Was that a gauntlet I just heard hitting the floor?)
Thought you might like to know!
Here's a solution that's both giving and selfish at the same time:
Put Joe's boring gray socks in your purse, and take yours out. That way you'll Have To work on them when you're desperate to knit on the subway. Also it will assuage him for no sweater for who knows how long (though I like the vest idea--most guys can't wear handspun sweaters anyhow, probably even in Toronto, because they're so darn warm)--it also might keep you from having no one to be married to except your sock yarn. Then you can work on whatever you feel to at home/ on longer travels.
Well it seems the budget just opened up!
My hubby called Denmark yesterday and ordered it for me.
I had Kauni filled dreams all night.
I'm so JAZZED that you're loving the Wollmeise. I have become a recent addict... I mean admirer of this amazing fiber and Claudia's genius with color. Come join the Wollmeisaholics Anonymous on Ravelry!!!
Maybe I'm just naive, but the more I think about it, the harder it is for me to draw the line between WIPs and stash. Aren't all those miles of yarn lying all over my house just WIP embryos? Finishing stuff is important to me, but what difference does it make how many things we have going? If I can embrace my stash, I can embrace my WIPs. I blame that stupid, meaningless waste of time, ravelry. No, I haven't gotten my invitation yet. Stupid 3555 people ahead of me. Stupid.
Early on in the Mystery Stole list (before I stoppped bothering to read the posts) someone mentioned using those weird dental floss things which have a thick fuzzy section and a stiff end to hold the beads. I tried it and it works really well and allows the MS3 to be my portable commuter knitting project. So I'm actually on Clue 6 as of this morning!
The Kauni sweater is beautiful (I'm making a pi r square shawl out of it, and love it). How did you manage to make the stripes on the sleeves the same width as the stripes on the body, considering that there are fewer stitches on the sleeve than in the body?
I really love the crocheted steek and would like to suggest that option for your Kauni cardigan. It gives an elastic edge that machine stitching doesn't. Have you ever considered it? Give it a try, you might really like it.