Sunday, January 04, 2009

The year's plan.

While shoveling through piles of knitwear and yarn and half-finished projects during Carpet Beetle Fest '08 (those little bastards have a lot to answer for), I ran across, I kid you not, this horrifying situation:

-four, as in FOUR, one-armed sweaters
-three other half-finished sweaters, in need of simple finishing
-yarn for at least four other sweaters

So when I wondered what I should do as a yearly theme, it didn't take much to come up with "Finish all the crap you've got laying around here, dumbass." I put it a little more politely on the button, though.

Do you like the swirly background pattern? I chose it because that's how my brain feels at the thought of all the stuff piled into the Yarn Closet that needs finished.

Now, that said, I have a couple plans to pull this off. One, before starting anything new, I should finish something old, first. In some cases that may take as little as a couple days, even hours in the case of a cotton tank waiting for some crochet at the edges. Once I start something new, I've gotta finish IT before going on to something else, or I'm just creating more unfinished stuff to lurk around the house. Sooo, finished project one will be my father-in-law's sweater (due by the end of January), and after that I hope to finish the Russian Prime in time to wear it this winter. Using up yarn that's been in The Pit counts as finishing something, but it also counts as a new project; either way, it's gotta get done before I start on something else. I've got a bag of lavender cotton here that I've been meaning to knit into a summer sweater of some kind since BEFORE I MOVED AWAY FROM HAWAII. That makes it at least five years old. Since I don't - normally - stash like some knitters, it's getting pretty ridiculous. Traditionally I buy yarn, knit it up, and then buy more. I don't know how I wound up with a closet of yarn, but I'm pretty sure it's due to the influence of other knitters.

I do need to keep two projects going at one time, at least usually. When I'm doing something heavy (my father-in-law's sweater on size nines), I like to have something light going too (lace) that I can switch off with, because I'm just not capable of knitting on heavy stuff that long. Either way, the same rules apply. Finish the heavy project before starting another. If possible, on lighter wool projects like the Russian Prime (on size fives with sport weight/what, uh, four-ply) I'll just work on the one.

You get the idea. This plan will have the added bonus of saving money in a year that it'll probably be a good idea, what with moving and job changes and all.

That said, look what I started on December 31.

This is the Faux Russian Stole from "A Gathering of Lace". I'm doing it on smaller needles with silk/alpaca yarn, so it's more like a Faux Russian Scarf. I've wanted to knit it for a while, I had the yarn (in that case it's kind of like finishing something, watch me justify), and I REALLY need to knit something for my friend. We swapped, and the jewelry she made was given away at Christmas. So I'm not going to explain to her how I have to finish five other things first.

So there we go. Year of finishing the stuff in The Pit. First up, my father-in-law's sweater, and this scarf. Then I'm going to do the Russian Prime. And then... well, I've got something in mind that's a new project but will use up stuff from the stash.

I do not, as in NOT, promise to finish all the one-armed sweaters here. Two of them have significant construction problems and need torn apart and re-sewn, and in some cases, bits unraveled and re-knit. But two are definitely getting done because nothing has stopped me from finishing them so far except my usual, when I stop work on projects for me to make things for other people. SELFISHNESS SHALL RULE!

Anyone who wants to join in, feel free to swipe the button.

Oh, and Amy Lane and I have cooked up a nefarious knit-along for February, once the Holiday Spaz-Out is finished (it goes to Chinese New Year, January 26). I don't want to get into details, but brush up on your mad sock-knitting skillz. It won't be normal. Amy thought of it and I agreed to it. Fear us.


Amy Lane said...

Oh wait... first you blame 'other knitters' for your stashing problems... then you spring the sock thing on people? You're going to have perfectly sane knitters running away from me on principle! (I'm only scary when I'm e-mailing Julie, I promise...) ROFL!

Anyway, it sounds like a plan... I should actually resolve to knit from stash this year--I don't know if I'm gonna, but it's a good idea...

Rose Red said...

I am so with you on the finishing thing. Although I'm not going to promise not to start anything new until I finish something. But I'll promise to try!!

Bells said...

Oh I was so close to choosing the Russian Stole when I got the book for Christmas. It's definitely on my must do list.

This is a great idea BTW.

Bells said...

ps do I sound smug if i say I have almost no unfinished WIPS around the house?

Galad said...

A nefarious knit along - hmmm - sounds fun. If you and Amy came up with the idea I know it will be creative :-)

I only have a little bit of knitting left from the holiday so I'm ready for something new.

Barbara said...

I'm up for the knit from stash part. I don't have much lurking, oh wait, just a sweater for Durwood and a Suduko afghan for fun. I suppose I have to count the 2-socks-at-once starts and probably DIL's sari silk purse. Okay, okay, I'm in for the finishing thing too. But I did finish all my holiday knitting on time.

Arianne said...

We're looking at EPIC (and I mean epic!) fail for me in the Holiday Craftalong. I did not reach my goal of finishing things before visiting the family for Christmas. I was VERY rubbish.

I will not finish by 26 January because I no longer care. And my brother needs to learn that if he's going to be a bastard his hat gets moved to the back of the line!

Coincidentally due to broke ass poorness 2009 is the year of finishing things for me too. Becuase you're using finishing to mean knitting things you have the yarn for but haven't started yet...and I've got like 100 things in that state in the yarn room...


Roxie said...

Yeah, no more new yarn for me, either. Unless I need it to knit a special project like a red and white hat for my nephew. Or unless it's on sale at a price I can't refuse. And if someone sends me yarn, I'm not going to send it back. There are projects that might need a bit of this or that to finish them off perfectly. And of course it's my duty to support local yarn producers at the Flock and Fiber Fest . . . But other than that, no new yarn. And finishing. Yeah. There's a load of crap that needs to be finished or frogged.

So, since I have no sock yarn, and don't love knitting socks anyhow, guess I can't join the sock-it-to-ya.

Donna Lee said...

I'm totally in for a Feb sock thing. Feb is a tough month around her. Cold, bleak and usually wet. Bring it on!

NeedleTart said...

I'm in for the sock thing. It seems like that's the only thing I finish and I have 125 elementary students "helping" me.

TinkingBell said...

I'm southern summer of c=socking to get all the sock wips finished - only got 3 pairs to go. And when I finish the ones I'm currently on I'm allowed to start the ones I'm hankering after.

I have travelling/mindless knitting, nearly mindless shawl knitting and 3 sock wips. I think that's okay though.

and I should knit from stash but probably wont because I am easil;y led and have no will power.
And my security word is spewab - blogger is doing weird things to me lately!