Sunday, December 31, 2006

Stashalong - the new rules

So I'm signing up again for Stashalong, in a bid to get my stash down to a manageable size.
I'm going for option 2 - the chequebook system.

First, I have to work out the full extent of the stash. I've started cataloguing this but it's not complete. Total so far is 41,500 g. I'm using weight as a measure, because it roughly equates to volume, and volume is what I need to lose to make the stash fit into its allotted space.

Ideally I'd like to eliminate 10kg of stash, which is a rather frightening 100-200 skeins depending on the type of yarn. However, I'll stick with this as a stretch goal, with interim targets of 2kg at a time.
Given that I'm not too sure of my starting point, I will focus on calculating usage /disposals and purchases/ gifts ie. what comes in and out. I think that not buying too much will be the hardest thing.

Any way I can get rid of yarn counts. ie. using it, giving it away or selling it. Likewise, if I receive yarn gifts that counts as additions to stash.
UFOs - credit is given for usage of yarn when object is completed.

Short term targets for January
Complete the Finn wool sweater
Make booga bag and Jawbreaker cardigan - both also count for 'It's not a Gift 2'
Rifle through the stash and come up with potential pattern and yarn pairings
Only start new projects from stash yarn

New Year's resolutions

1) To reduce the stash to a storable level

I have been steadily increasing my stash all year, and it now exceeds the available storage space. My goal is to fit everything in to my wool holes, which means knitting/ selling / giving away to reduce the stash.
To this end, I am signing up for stashalong again, but this time under the new rules.

2) Finish the UFOs or throw them out

This includes:

  • Erin ribbon twist sweater
  • Purple cardigan
  • Purple felted bag
  • Blue handbag
  • Cream knitting bag
  • Amazing lace shawl

3) Learn new techniques
Not sure what this will encompass yet, but some ideas:
  • Mittens
  • Felting
  • Dyeing
  • EZ pattern
  • Multidirectional
  • Fairisle
  • Yoke sweater
  • Lace knitting

Thinking about it, I've learnt a lot of techniques in 2006, including:
knitting in the round - large diameter
altering a pattern
magic loop method
2 circulars method
socks- both toe up and down
basic crochet stitches

Friday, December 29, 2006

A year in blog posts

I've pinched this idea from Knit 'n' lit - I've been knitting for a year now, and it's a good time to look back over that time. In life in general, 2006 has certainly been better than 2005, although my main hopes and goals for 2006 remain largely unfulfilled - let's hope for good times in 07.
Knitting has been a bright addition to my life, and I've learnt lots and made good friends from it.

January - Discovered ebay as a stash source. Went a bit crazy buying yarn that I probably will never knit up.

February - Kept working on my first jumper, and discovered that I hate knitting with eyelash yarn.

March - Set up my blog, and discovered the joys of finding yarn shops when going away to new places.

April - Made a Clapotis - this seems to be a rite of passage for all internet knitters.

May - Finished the Hot Lava shrug which is now a favourite to wear, although it's incredibly heavy. Ashamed to say that most of the other items enthusiastically cast on in May remain unfinished...

June - Got my own camera for blogging, and special wool holes to store the stash.

July - The wonderful knitting weekend in the Isle of Wight combined with a heat wave. A high point of the year.

August - Holidays, and finding lots of Scandinavian yarn stores. A mohair shawl.

September - Started my first pair of socks, and learnt to crochet.

October - Ally Pally

November - Crocheted shawl

December - My first two pairs of socks! They are kind of addictive.

And a running theme throughout the year of adding more and more to the stash. It's now officially SABLE (stash approaching beyond life expectancy).

Thursday, December 28, 2006

Christmas presents

I got just what I wanted for Christmas this year, as I had given my nearest and dearest a list of stash enhancing requests.

I've already started knitting up the Colinette Prism I received into the Jawbreaker pattern from the current issue of Interweave Knits.

I also got two patterns for Noni bags. I've been admiring these for a while, but thought the patterns were a little expensive, so they were a welcome present.

My sister bought me a felted wool box, which has been in use since I unwrapped it. It's great for holding current projects and associated patterns and accessories.

I've started on a Booga bag that I've been planning to make for ages with a particularly bright colourway of Kureyon.

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Christmas update

Christmas knitting all finished!
My sister was very happy with her yarn over cable socks. This one was a bit stressful, as I was knitting right up to the wire, and finished darning in the ends on Christmas morning!

My brother got a bonus keyhole ribbed scarf, whipped up mostly yesterday and was modelling it this morning.

My DH took a raincheck on his jumper to allow me to complete the socks for Christmas, but I need to finish it for his birthday in January... I 've really struggled with the sleeve math, and finally persuaded him to work through it for me this morning, so I now have the calculations in hand.

Saturday, December 16, 2006

Yarn sale preview

For those coming over for the yarn purge or splurge tomorrow, here's a preview of some of the yarn I plan to offload:

Hope that tempts you...

Thursday, December 14, 2006

A quick scarf

I used Colinette Prism to make a quick mini keyhole ribbed scarf. I used my husband as the model to check the number of stitches needed for the width, and before I had even worked it out, he had claimed the scarf for himself! He has been a very grateful recipient, and looks very cute in it. The yarn is so soft and cushiony, a real joy to knit with. I'm still hoping to get another done as a gift for Christmas.

I've started the socks for my sister, and swatched a number of patterns to see what would work with the dark, slightly variegated wool. I took the sock on flights this week. An advantage of the tiny Brittany birch dpns is that they don't seem to cause any alarm at security as they are small, blunt and have no metal parts. The knitting I did on the evening flight was fine, but the rows I worked on the night flight back had to be frogged this morning... It was fun to find out that the air steward on the flight was a very keen knitter and we discussed yarn stores and 2 circs versus dpns for small diameter circular knitting.

I received my first order from Posh Yarn this morning. The colours are pretty, but somehow I expected the yarn to be softer and more lofty. We'll see how it knits up.

Friday, December 01, 2006

My first pair of socks

A long weekend away in the north gave me the opportunity to get some serious knitting done. I'm now up to the underarm split on the Finn wool jumper, but think I'm going to have to get busy with a calculator and graph paper to calculate the sleeve cap. I've printed off the articles from knitty on how to do this, but it runs to about 60 pages....

I finished my first pair of socks! They fit beautifully and the pattern is great for a first time sock knitter.