I used to be able to say “never have I ever….” about a lot if things in knitting until this year. It’s been a great year of learning and growth as a knitter, and I’m excited to continue into next year (as my 1,000+ favorites and ever-growing queue on Ravelry can attest). It can be debated if all of these are good or bad habits, but I’m certainly deeper and deeper into the rabbit hole that is knitting.
Never Have I Ever….
· Stashed Yarn—Never have I ever bought yarn without a specific project in mind or bought yarn for a “yarn stash”. This changed when I saw the gorgeous Grand Prismatic Springs yarn dyed by Destination Yarns on Instagram. Not only did I buy 2 skeins to start my yarn stash, I had to call Send It Home yarns in Yellowstone, WY and beg them to send me yarn when it arrived at the store. They were more than happy to comply, and the barrier of starting a stash was broken. Enter Hedgehog Fibres specially dyed yarn for Do Ewe Knit’s anniversary and seasonal colorways from Barnyard Knits….I’m afraid of what new colorways will come home stashed from Rhinebeck next weekend!
· Had More Than One WIP at a Time used to be a monogamous knitter, dutifully finishing one project before casting on the next. This year I was bit with the urge to cast all on the things. At one point I had over 5 WIPs, a huge swing from my consistent one WIP last year. I only stopped casting on projects when I ran out of needles! I’m currently down to 4 WIPs, but I also bought new needles so we’ll see how long that lasts….
· Taken a Knitting Class—Why pay money for a knitting class with the free powers of YouTube and the Interwebz at your fingertips? Well when I saw Steven West was teaching a class at my LYS I immediately called with credit card in hand to snag one of the few remaining spots in the class. It was exhilarating to be in a class with Steven West. We learned new stitches and color techniques, got to chat with Steven, and made a whole new family of fiber friends. When Andrea Mowry was announced later that fall I also jumped at the chance and learned how to brioche. I had made attempts before through YouTube, and it was infinitely more enjoyable to learn firsthand from a pro, plus the added help of my fellow knitting students.
· Knit in Public—I was a closeted knitter for the first 2 years, telling only immediate family for whom I was knitting birthday and Christmas gifts. As knitting took over my life and became a lifestyle I found myself knitting waiting for appointments, on the train, outside, wherever! I started to wear my hand knits and surprised friends and family when I off-hand mentioned I knit it, forgetting I was still a closeted knitter to them. First I had to put up with some friendly teasing, but more and more people are asking for hand-knit gifts 🙂
· Swatched and Checked Gauge—I thought by using the same needles and yarn as the pattern suggested I would knit to the exact same dimensions. I was wrong…and wrong, and wrong, and wrong again. It only took 4-5 attempts at shawls too small to realize the importance of gauge. I’m still not perfect, and my last two attempts where too large, but I’m slowly understanding and getting the hand of things. My dream is to make a sweater next year, so still working on this one.
· Subscribed to Fiber Podcasts and YouTube Channels—As knitting and fiber arts take over my lifestyle, I can’t seem to get enough of it. And when your close friends and family don’t knit you have to fill that need to constantly watch, listen, and talk wool elsewhere! Enter the Podcasts and YouTube Channels. I love settling in with my current WIP with my wool friends (Voolenvine, Kristy Glass, GemmaDarling, Woolful) in the evening to knit a few rows.
· Set Alarms For Shop Updates—There are so many indie dyers and small shop owners with gorgeous, quality products it’s hard to resist them! And it doesn’t help that their products are so in-demand they have shop updates that create a mad scramble to grab the one item you’ve been lusting over for the past few weeks before they sell out in a matter of minutes. I’m talking about you Primrose Yarn, Pink Hazel Bags, and Sucre Sucre Miniatures!
I’m looking forward to knocking many more never have I evers off my list next year!