Tuesday, October 18, 2011

The Knitting Myth

You will have seen from my blog that I knit a bit, well ok a lot.

Like most keen knitters I know I tend to knit whenever I can - on trains, in waiting rooms, during non-critical presentations, at cafe's with friends and at home. I produce a great range of shawls, socks, cardigans and other garments.

To the average non-knitter there is not much to it - pick up some needles, yarn and a pattern and off you go right?

Wrong. This statement is so wrong.

If I am going to produce a garment I need to think about it. Yes, I know one of the joys of the actual knitting is not having to think to much while doing it. However, before I start I have thinking to do, a lot of thinking to do.

Starting any knitting project involves the following key steps

What do I want to knit?
Shawl, Socks, Cardigan, Jumper, Mitts, Hats, Baby stuff

For Who?
Me, T, O - other.

Plain, Patterned, Lace , Colourwork

Weight, composition, colour

Do I have/have access to a pattern?
Probably, where is it?

Do I need/want to resize it?

Do I have enough yarn?
Yes/no/not sure....Often the answer is not sure.

Can I get gauge (ie knitting with the same or different needles get the same dimensions for a small piece of knitting as the designer)

This often takes a bit of effort and time and rework.
Don't forget to wet block it and "Wear" it a bit to see if it will stretch, change shape or drape afterwards.

Often the Answer is no

What Modifications do I need to make?
Graph it, chart it, document it.

Finally I am all set now (unless I change my mind and go back to pattern or colour again)
Yarn and colour

Finally I can knit.

So the next time you see a knitter - appreciate the pre-work that went into that effortless knitting they are doing in front of you!

Back to my challenge.

Usually I am really good at this bit having things on the go and ready to start.
This month - October - has been particularly hectic for me. Multi-day work strategy sessions spilling into weekends and additional events and responsibilities with family, friends and other knitters (guild anyone).

The tragedy is I am running out of Knitting Thinking time and I am away (for fun this time) this weekend but without a new project ready to go on the needles.

I really only have tonight to get something going - decisions, decisions. I suspect a shawl or socks - only because I can risk skipping the whole gauge and swatching steps.

How is your Craft thinking time going

Happy Crafting.


Rose Red said...

I vote socks! I have about 100 patterns in my queue and a similar number of skeins of sock yarn, I suspect you might be similar?!

missfee said...

love the new background

yes the thinking time it is so important

I just need more time

to knit

1funkyknitwit said...

Clearly your not alone with your thoughts and you are SO right about the process to finally picking up those sticks. I guess thats why I knit a lot of accessories not much thinking involved and partly because I too tend to mull things over for way to long. By this stage I usually give up and grab my sticks with some shawl, armwarmers & socks have now joined that pattern list and away I go - instant

I'm the wrong person to ask about what to