Thursday, February 22, 2007


Sometimes things just come together. In this case, it is all about the knitting.

Point 1 - Startitis. The overwhelming desire to start new knitting, despite having several projects on the needles. Most knitters experience this at some time. What drives this desire? Boredom? Fickleness? Frustration? A creative outburst? For me, at least, this desire seems to stem from two places. First, the desire to be knitting something new and different: color, or fiber, or stitch pattern. Second, the desire to knit for a short period of time, but my projects are all at places that require more time and attention than I have (usually because I need to fix a mistake). Rarely is it driven from the desire to complete a new object.

Point 2 - The pack rat. For a lot of knitters it is difficult to through away even the smallest bit of yarn, as evidenced by the recent discussion over at Pat's blog (check out the Feb. 19th entry). Those little bits and bobs of yarn left over from other projects seem too precious to throw away. But they do add up, and for me at least, the sit upon my concious, wanting to be turned into something beautiful.

So the question for me has become - is there anyway to alleviate these two syndromes? Can they somehow work together?

Enter The Book of Knitty . I love the idea of a knitted book, one that records not only different stitch patterns, but also the different yarns that I have enjoyed working with. But to knit a whole book seems like to much of an undertaking - to planned.

Enter Nona - Nona has been knitting a swatch a day. Some have been more successful than others (though she does point out that you may learn more from a failed swatch), but I think they are all grand. Swatches are wonderful - they are small experiments in color, in texture, in fiber. They don't have to fit. And if you mess up - it is not much to pull out, if indeed you feel the need to pull it out at all.

Then the convergence - I can quell my startitis by knitting swatches. I can use up bits and bobs of yarn knitting swatches. I can (eventually) create a notebook that records the important information (stitch pattern instructions and yarn used) that includes the swatches. A modern day knitting sampler. I really like this idea.

So I have been knitting swatches in my spare moments the last two evenings. I won't commit to a swatch a day, but whenever I feel the need to start something new - I now have a plan.

(I also have two swatches, but, alas, I have lost the card reader for the digital camera so I won't be able to show pictures until after tomorrow.)


nona said...

I'm glad you're joining the swatch adventure -- I look forward to seeing what you create!

Anne said...

Great plan! Channel all that momentary startitis into something useful that won't languish in a work basket for months (years?)

Jennifer said...

I actually am pretty excited about this as well and to share the project with others. At least for the past three days, I have kept up with a swatch a day. I am getting a new camera cord tomorrow so I can download my pictures.