Friday, November 30, 2012

Never Not Knitting Podcast

I am a bit excited today.  Yeah, it's Friday and whatnot, but this is even better.

My funny story about my Comedy of Errors Sweater, aka Napoli Sweater, is featured on Alana Dakos' podcast #68 of Never Not Knitting!

I have enjoyed Alana's podcast for a few years now. She started out as a frequent knitter talking about her own projects, knitting product reviews and injecting her own funny knitting stories. Then she started adding funny and interesting stories from her listeners from around the world. In the last few years she has branched out to running her own knitwear design company and has self published, with friend and co-author Hannah Fettig, the very popular Coastal Knits books. Alana has recently self-published a new children's book called "Annie and the Swiss Cheese Scarf"; it is an adorable story about a little girl and her effort to learn to knit.

Alana always puts together an entertaining podcast full of knitting stories and now my story, read by me, is being featured on this month's episode!  Check it out!

Have you ever heard your own voice on tape and been surprised at what you sound like to others?  Um, yeah! Kind of surreal.

So I have been very busy knitting up some Christmas gifts so I have not been posting much as I don't want to ruin the surprises. My previous hysteria over Christmas knitting has lessened. I am almost feeling Zen about the whole thing now. What will be will be, as such.

But I can show you one really cute thing that I have knit recently.
I'd like to introduce you to: Mr. Bunnyman Blankstare.
He doesn't say much.
pattern is: Snowball Buddies, by Susan Claudio Designs
I had no stuffing at home when it was time to fill this little guy's body and I found myself at a dollar store buying a full sized pillow and cutting it open at home for the filling. I needed a palm full of stuffing and now have enough stuffing for an army of these little guys.

Which, if I am not careful, will ruin my new found Zen-like calm and bring me right back to hysterical as I control myself from the idea that I can make 87 more of these before Christmas!

Monday, November 12, 2012

Early Evening Cardigan

I am in love with a cardigan.

Lady Marple Sweater, by Nadia Crétin-Léchenne 
I started knitting this sweater for myself this weekend and I want to nothing else except knit it. This is an exceptionally brilliant pattern knit in one piece from the bottom up.  I am hoping that mine looks as cute and functional as the one pictured above by the author/designer. Mine will be a dark chocolate brown with robin's egg blue edging.

The best part of this sweater... I am knitting it with stashed yarn! I just need to make one sweater a month for the next XX months and I will have this whole stash-issue under control. (Let's stop with the crazy talk and just focus on knitting one sweater at a time.)

I am just under the arms with only a weekend's work. It is a "quick" knit but I have also done a lot of sitting around this weekend due to all the snow that arrived. A new sweater project is the perfect way to spend a snowbound weekend.

I am calling this my Early Evening cardigan because my kids and I watched all of the Twilight movies this weekend while I was knitting.

Monday, November 5, 2012

The Inevitable Binge after a Diet Declaration

Sigh. Yeah, that didn't last long.

I should know better, really, I should.  While I was at it I should have said I was on a eating diet too. Then I would have immediately made myself a container of brownies, ate 2 candy bars and called it day. It is the way I typically react to any sort of resolution without moderation. In a word... poorly.

I told my eldest daughter about my proposed yarn diet right after I wrote my last blog and she was all "Whoa, Mom, how are YOU going to do that for more than a year!"  I was a little hurt. I told her about determination and stick-to-it-ness and appreciating the things you have.  Blah blah blah. I should go buy her a new ipod or something because clearly I am teaching my children nothing here.

There is no after-school special being modelled on my life here, people.

I started well enough. I am a list maker. So I made a list of the projects in my queue where I already had the yarn. I made sub-lists of the projects that I would make for myself and those I would make for future gifts. I figured that this would go better if I had a plan. My plan was to knit with my stashed yarn and to stay away from my favourite on-line yarn shops until I had built up some momentum.

Then I found a new project that I absolutely loved on Ravelry! I wanted to make it in the same yarn as the original, because it was far more lovely than anything I have ever seen. But I wasn't allowing myself to shop on-line. I convinced myself that it wasn't really buying yarn if I acquired it from someone else's "will trade or sell" stash from Ravelry. I wasn't shopping. I was doing another knitter a favour by taking that unwanted gem off their hands! For money!

That was my slippery slope.

Last week I had occasion to go into my nearest big city and I just happened to find myself at my favourite LYS yarn and accidentally(?) found myself buying 3,271 yards of yarn. I bought all of this yarn like I had nothing else at home waiting to be knit and with the attitude that this amount of yarn was totally going to be all knit up before Christmas. It was just a few hats and 4 pairs of socks.


I was, and am, fooling no one. And it is best that I reboot the whole thing before I end up owning a yarn shop to spite myself. I am not going to beat myself up about this but I do need to smarten up and get ahold of this issue.

So I am going to revise my goals to be much more simple and reasonable.

  1. I am going to try to knit from my stash until October 31, 2013 December 31, 2012.
  2. I am going to use stashed yarn for all projects from now until deadline.
  3. I am in one yarn club right now (it ends November 2012) but that will be the only yarn coming in. Incoming club yarn will be added to the stash totals.
  4. I will accept yarn or yarn club memberships as gifts. Hint, Hint. (Is it sad that I am already planning loopholes to my rules.) Those totals will be added to the stash.
  5. I would like to have under 52,500 yards by deadline. (That is 11% consumption. Which admittedly may be a pretty high goal.)  I am going to see how much yardage I can use between now and then. No other goals.
  6. Selling and trading yarn is allowed and will be documented accordingly. I am striking this because I know that I have no intention of selling or trading any yarn between now and the end of the year.
  7. I will report monthly.

So as of November 1, 2012 my stats are as follows:
WIP: 4
Total Yardage: 61,588 yards

We'll see how this goes.  How many times do I need to remind myself... it's a process, knitter.