I do little check-in's, now and again, to help me organize current and future projects. I'm currently feeling a little scattered, project-wise with far more in-progress projects than normal, but I'll get to that. It's quite the list!
Junction scarf: enjoyable, soothing project. It grows quickly, but it is a scarf and I want it to be quite lengthy. I won't be wearing this anytime soon, but I don't want it languish, either.
May cardigan: I realized recently that I made a rather large mistake (well, a small mistake that becomes a big one once the cardigan is assembled). I've worked on it here and there, but I want to clear off a few other projects before diving headfirst back into it.
Colorwork cowl: knit as part of the Craftsy class. I'm really enjoying this and surprisingly happy with how the yarn colors play together (considering they were all taken from my stash). This is my next priority, since it's nearly finished.
Colorwork mittens: (pattern is 34th and 8th, a name I can never remember) these are intentionally on-hold, until I finish my colorwork class on Craftsy*
A secret project: just finished today! To be mailed to someone I love.
intending to make (sooner) :
- glacier park cowl (pattern purchased on sale)
- socks or slippers for Nicholas
- socks for me (if fingering-weight, maybe afterthought heel or BFF socks, omitting the cables)
intending to make (later) :
- cardamom coffee hat (pattern purchased on sale)
- atmen shawl (pattern purchased on sale)
- colorwork yoke sweater in worsted or heavier—lighthouse pullover is still a top contender
- DK weight socks: Morrison for a textured pair
- some kind of short-sleeve or sleeveless sweater layering piece with positive ease; a pattern of Julie Hoover's perhaps?
- another pair of align mitts, perhaps in gold madeline tosh leftovers
- Christmas presents(?) still in early planning phases
My quilt: almost done! With Nicholas' help (he's good with color and design) I decided on a linen/cotton indigo and ivory backing, and then a simple bright navy for the binding. My new walking foot arrived yesterday (my machine didn't come with one, so I ordered one compatible with my machine online) and it made machine quilting a breeze, without bunching. As in, the whole quilt top was done in less than two hours. It's amazing how everything comes together at the end of this (long, wonderful) process. Last night, I made the binding tape, and today, I'll sew it on and start hand stitching.
A zippered pouch/project bag: Done! I stayed up far too late working on it (whoops) but I was too excited. Using this tutorial by Noodlehead, I made a large sized pouch and learned several new skills, including boxed corners, use of interface and lining, and zipper installation for a bag. The top fabric is leftover from the quilt backing(!) and the canvas bottom was something I picked up from JoAnn's awhile back.
intending to make (sooner):
- a tunic (fabric from stash)
- a tee shirt (fabric from stash)
- a cover for double pointed needles
I'm amazed at how much there is to learn throughout the creative process. Sure, there are the technical skills, like colorwork and learning to knit continental style, two long-term goals I'm making progress on. The Craftsy class I'm in the midst of is called Modern Stranded Knitting Techniques by Mary Jane Mucklestone and I cannot recommend it enough. I'm knitting a cowl for the class with unlikely stash yarn and I'm quite pleased with it so far. The class builds on knowledge you already have and teaches you gradually more complicated colorwork skills. I'm about 70% done with the class and already I'm feeling much more excited to move onto other planned colorwork projects, and get back to making the colorwork mittens I started awhile back.
In general, my goals are to prioritize my works-in-progress and streamline project planning. I normally never allow myself to have more than 2-3 knitting projects at once and right now I have five, plus the quilt. There's something to be said about sitting down and just finishing what I've started. The truth is, there are always going to be new fabric lines and new yarn colorways and new pattern collections that will catch my attention. But for this next bit, I want to quiet my mind a bit, decrease that stimuli of the creative world and get back to knitting and sewing as a means of rest. I want to stick with a process and unwind away from the constant "more is better" message everywhere. Believe me, the knitting and sewing world is flooded with the same message and I'm prone to discontent. I have to watch my "wants" so that they don't affect my heart too much, and that means saying "no" to beautiful things. Creativity can be a source of overwhelm and frustration if we allow ourselves to be overtaken with the more is more mentality. I want my making not to be a source of frenzy, but one of calm. And I plan to get back to that, one finished item at a time. For a little more balance and contentedness, it'll be worth it.
P.S.—I should note that knitting continental style and getting more comfortable with colorwork somewhat go hand in hand. It's a bit rough, but I'm getting more consistent. I love that I can hold my dominant color in my left hand and my background color in the right, without the yarn getting tangled. Plus, this keeps my floats horizontal (all concepts I had no real basis for until very recently)
P.P.S.—I've been devoting a few minutes of each day to reading Present Over Perfect. So good.
P.P.P.S.—just because this video of Mister Rogers talking about his sweaters (that his mother knit for him!) makes me all sorts of sentimental, and you might enjoy it too.