At the beginning of the new year (like everyone else), I make resolutions. This year, I want to get healthier (seems like that shows up every year), organize my house, improve my overall fitness and learn something new with knitting. I find that while I don’t really do well with abstract goals like “lose weight,” I do complete action items like “hike 500 miles.” (FYI – 538 miles hiked in 2013. Woo-hoo!)
With this in mind, I considered how to form learning something new with knitting. I wanted this resolution to be a challenge, and I’ve definitely gotten past the basics. Then I thought about last year and realized that I hadn’t completed something that I wanted to do.
So, with that failure in mind, I decided that this year, my goal is to design and knit a sweater for myself. Something that I will want to wear every day. Something that I need. Something that makes me look and feel pretty and cool at the same time. I’m starting to meditate on this design.
The sweater I started last year never really sparked me. I wasn’t in love with the color although I love the yarn. The design spoke to me, but only in a little tiny whisper which wasn’t enough to propel me to success. I know I need a new design process if I’m going to actually make this happen.
First, I’m going to go through my sweaters and other clothing and see which pieces look the best on me. This is a good time for that anyway since organization is high on my list of things to do this year. Then, I’ll figure out what design element in each piece makes me believe they flatter me. Finally, I’ll take those design elements and incorporate them into my sweater design.
I have several sweater design books that I can study and use as guides: Sweater Design in Plain English by Maggie Righetti, Knit to Flatter by Amy Herzog, The Knitter’s Handy Book of Sweater Patterns by Ann Budd, Little Red in the City by Isolda Teague and Knitwear Design Workshop by Shirley Paden. Plus, I have Barbara Walker’s four volume Treasury of Knitting Patterns. Playing with some new stitch patterns never hurt anyone.
With all this information, I have a pretty good chance of ending up with something that I’ll like and wear. The added bonus is that I’ve already scheduled a sweater workshop (Fitting to Finishing at Sew Steamboat starting February 12th) so I have no reason not to go ahead and design this sweater so I can get it started with everyone else in the class!
What are your knitting or crocheting resolutions this year? Anything new you want to learn? Any knitting or crocheting mountains to climb?
The Knitting Week in Steamboat
Sit ‘n Stitch – Friday, 4-6pm – Sew Steamboat: Every Friday, a group of us meet to enjoy learning, laughter and needlework of all types. We’d love to see you there!
Yarn It! – Saturday, 10am-12n – Mountain Brew: A few of us meet each Saturday to enjoy a treat (my favorite are the cranberry orange scones) and a lovely cup of tea or coffee while we knit and chat and chat and knit! Feel free to join us!
Crocodile Stitch Crochet – Saturday, 3-5pm – Sew Steamboat: Week 1 of 2. Crocheters! Would you like to learn a new stitch? The crocodile stitch is not only beautiful but it can turn your entire project into an art piece. The layered effect almost brings your project to life no matter what you’re working up. You can make many unique looking items with this stitch including wrist warmers, a shawl, hood, hats and more. Since the hood in our window has received a lot of interest, we thought we’d teach the technique while creating this beautiful hood. Taught by Donna Henderson. Cost is $50. Call Sew Steamboat at 879-3222 to make a reservation.
Knitting at the College – Monday, 1-3pm – Bristol Hall 2nd Floor Lounge at CMC: Join these fun folks to knit and laugh and have a good ol’ time. I swear, I’m going to make it someday….
Knitting Group – Tuesday, 6pm – Yampa Public Library, 310 Main St., Yampa: All levels are welcome. Bring yarn and knitting needles. For more information call 970-638-4654.
Beginning Knitting for Men – Thursday, 5-7pm – Sew Steamboat: Week 1 of 3. Taught by Mike Moore, guys will find a friendly atmosphere where they will learn how to knit, purl, cast on, bind off, increase and decrease – all the tools necessary to make a pair of fingerless mitts and a hat! Cost is $75. Call 879-3222 to make a reservation or get more information.
The season is heating up with classes! My newest class is Knit Your Own Skirt and starts Saturday, January 11th. We’ll be learning a provisional cast-on, a new way to join your stitches, Jeny’s surprisingly stretchy bind-off and finishing techniques to make your skirt a winner! Click here for more information on this fun class.
Also, just a quick update about the great Christmas hat search. I finished the last hat yesterday, and here’s a picture of the last three.
I hope to get them wrapped and delivered later today. Yeehaw!