Knitters frequently find knitting to be compelling and irresistible. This leads to a great deal of thought about the next project. Here are some questions and possibilities to consider while you’re daydreaming about your next project. There are no wrong answers, but considerations will vary.
Questions to Consider
- Am I looking for a challenge?
a. Beginner – Try a new stitch pattern. If you’ve mastered ribbing, garter stitch and stockinette stitch, try moss stitch or seed stitch
b. Intermediate – Time to jump in and try a cable pattern or Fair Isle. Try it on a small project, like hat, mittens, or scarf first. Or maybe it’s time to try a bigger project, like your first blanket, sweater, or vest.
c. Advanced – Looking for something extra spicy? Try an unusual construction technique to go with your fancy stitch pattern.
2. Do I want a portable knitting project?
a. Short trips – most projects in the beginning stages are portable, just put your needles & yarn in a small bag and away you go!
b. Lectures, Classes, Soccer games, etc. = Hours away from home – Will your project fit in your project bag? Make sure you bring an extra ball of yarn or three!
c. Long trips = Days away from home – This is a good time to have a few small to medium projects you can pack. Make sure you bring enough yarn, and the spare needle tips, and the smaller/larger sizes you’ll need. Time to make up a traveling notions kit!
3. Do I need to buy supplies?
a. Beginner – Still in the building stage for your needle collection & stash? A new project is a great reason to buy more needles and yarn.
b. What is the state of your stash? If you’ve reached SABLE, maybe it’s time to only do projects that use what you have on hand.
c. Are you the unicorn of the knitting world? The knitter who only buys what her current project needs and only works on one project at a time? Wow!
4. How many projects do I want to work on simultaneously?
a. Beginner – Two projects seems like a lot! But how can I resist that pattern? (Good luck. This is how it usually begins….)
b. Knitaholic – I need a portable project, a challenging project, an easy, tv-watching project, and … the list goes on.
c. Recovering knitaholic – I will only knit a project if I have enough needles for it. Or yarn. One of the two. Definitely. This time I will not go out and buy more needles and yarn. I really mean it.
5. I need some comfort knitting. It’s been a rough year, we all need comfort knitting.
a. Try mindfully knitting stockinette stitch in the round. Cowls, ponchos, even a double layer scarf are possibilities.
b. For the more experienced knitter, try a sport weight yarn so the project will last longer.
c. For the fast knitter, a simple stitch pattern, like ribbing, moss stitch or similar may provide enough of a challenge to keep you attention, or try the above in a lace weight yarn!
6. I want to knit something for a child.
a. You spotted a washable yarn you just have to have, didn’t you?
b. Practical: Kids are always losing their mittens, hats, & scarves. (Nice rationalizing!)
c. Babies are sooo cute!: Baby patterns are super cute. Knitted toys are even cuter, smaller, & faster to make, usually.
7. I want to try something … different.
a. Artsy: These are most often knitted wall-hangings or yarn bombing (wrapping knitting around outdoor objects like trees, posts, etc.), but serious artists are bringing knitting and crocheting to art galleries. For more info, see artsy.net’s article.
b. Craftivism: Long before pussyhats and Ravelry’s ban on support for Trumpism, knitting and crocheting have been political. Columbia University’s article provides a brief overview.
c. Home Dec: while not as interesting as the first 2 options, it’s easy to forget that you can knit for your living room, bedroom, bathroom, etc. Pillows, table runners, bath mats, and more are all possibilities. Don’t forget to knit for your electronics, too.
8. Is now the right time for a new project? (Maybe this should be your first question.)
a. Just how many UFO’s do you have?
b. Same question, but for knitting needles. Sure, the interchangeables sets make it easy to take off the needle tips & place needle size markers on the cables so you can use the needle tips on a new project and still know which needles to use when you eventually get back to your brand new UFO, but is it really a good idea?
c. #Procrastiknitting. I love the Urban Dictionary’s definition:
Knitting when you really should be doing something else. Frequently done furtively to avoid the disapproving stares of people who know what you should be doing.
Finally, A Trick Question…
This one has only one right answer, but I have faith in you.
9. Knitters knit so that:
a. we can buy more yarn
b. we can buy more needles
c. because it’s a comforting, soothing hobby that helps keep the mind active
d. why choose!!!
As always, I’d love to hear your respectful thoughts, feelings and opinions!