2014 kNIT WRAP-UP [very long post]

Yeah, I know. It’s 2016 already, so I’m very late (this isn’t news).

LATE_PRINT_a

And of course, an end-of-the-year wrap-up is NOT a groundbreaking blog post idea certainly.  But I find it helps me see 1) what I’ve been accomplishing for good or for ill, and 2) how much yarn I will actually use in a given year – which is a serious curb on any urge to enhance the stash. I have NO BUSINESS buying more yarn!  Except maybe more Ultra Alpaca……. Since this is SUPPOSED to be a knitting blog primarily, it’s ACTUAL KNITTING CONTENT. So there. I hope you’ll enjoy it anyway.

Why is this not about 2015’s output? I’ll tell you at the end…a payoff for slogging through all the rest of this.

 

Before the pictures and projects, I wanna say a few things overall about the year 2014 now.

Firstly, I have to give my husband, Studmuffin, FULL MARKS for his loving support in my health challenges this year (2014).  He was simply WONDERFUL. I cannot begin to tell of the myriad ways he helped me with diabetes, the weight loss, mobility issues, the painful shoulder business, and a couple of other things that I won’t mention publicly; friends and neighbors, he was absolutely priceless.

Plus a somewhat willing knit model – now THAT’S support! Studmuffin in the WV ski lodge.

I probably shouldn’t mention that there were a couple of serious falldowns in the mental/emotional support areas of his husbandry this year (2014), but I’m not the really good person I aspire to be, so I am mentioning it.  However, looking back at 2014 (and without my usual hyperbole), overall I feel he was mind-bogglingly SPECTACULAR.

Not my yarn. My stash isn’t nearly as neat as this……..

I made it to EIGHTEEN MONTHS in my 2 Year yarn diet. Nope, I did not complete it, but I think I did VERY well. I may do it again, but first I must complete a fairly large purchase of yarn to make a sweater for a very dear sisterfriend soon…..  Truly, I have mended my ways of overpurchasing yarn by observing new habits, but I know I could easily slip back to the way I was. Yarn fumes is powerful stuff….

I went to several new yarn stores during my travels and  2 of them were the best yarn stores I’ve EVER been to!  They must be avoided in the future, unfortunately, because I have SO MUCH YARN and I cannot afford to buy more, and I know I would be overcome by the yarn fumes in those wonderful places. Yes, I *know* I have a “problem”: not enough storage!

Completed Projects

Captions contain the month of completion; pictures link to individual Ravelry project pages.

Deveil's Snare Mittens

January – Devil’s Snare Mittens: made for a Harry Potter themed mitten swap.

Devil's Snare mittens_palms

January – Palm side. These are SO special they deserve TWO photos. 🙂

January – Tessie Lily hat

 

June – Moderne Cable Socks

 

July – Tessie Lily hat #2

August – “Fake Isle” for Arianna

August – Ohio State hat for a long-distance alum

October – Clean Slate for a med student

November – Infinity Scarf

December – Spiral Knit bulky hat

December – Studmuffin slippers

December – Tychus hat (again)

December – Estonian Rib Hat

December – Santa hat for my daughter

Plus there were some other projects ( my note indicate as many as 6)….but now it’s been so long, I cannot remember what they were so ok.

Honorable mentions

January 2015 – close but no cigar!

 

Final comments

My knitting productivity was hampered greatly by my using a cane to walk with from March to August 2014. When I am carrying/using a cane, I am not carrying a knitting project unless I know I’m going to have to wait or I have someone to help me, usually Studmuffin.

In addition to the cane usage was the painful left shoulder.  I think it was the summer that I started noticing far more than a twinge in my left shoulder, which I thought was rather odd as I use my right hand for most repetitive tasks – writing, mouse usage, and so on. By September, it hurt nearly constantly, and I was using it less and less, so I found a chiropractor and started dealing with it.  Through exercises done diligently and some near daily yoga (ok, ok, it’s ONE yoga pose)  I have almost no pain and better range of motion in that shoulder than I can remember! Still, when it was painful, I could not knit much at all.

****SInce I wrote that last paragraph, I have since resolved the shoulder problems, and I am using my cane less and less, so that’s happy. Unfortunately, my Wednesday night knit group – small to begin with, has withered to nothing, and that has seriously limited my brain space for knitting.*******

—-

WARNING! WARNING! WARNING! WHINGE AHEAD!

The reason this is about 2014 and not 2015 is there just has not been much completed knitting for me this year – mostly disappointments.

I was working for months on a very large project as a wedding gift, but as I am now estranged from the couple……it’s all just too incredibly painful.

I also started work on some gorgeous Fair Isle glittens for a friend…and she suddenly passed away.  I may complete them for myself, because at the moment, I have only store bought back-up mittens (which depresses me every time I put them on).

The brown socks (Moderne Cable Socks above) I made for the Force of Nature- well, one went AWOL for months.  When I finally found it, I couldn’t find the other. When I found the other one, it had moth holes in it. MOTH HOLES!  Before she ever got to wear them ONCE! Yes, I will darn the holes…but I cannot find the leftover yarn. ::::sigh::::

I made 2 more hats for Studmuffin – he prefers the one from the store…that isn’t nearly as warm. I give up.

Currently, I’m knitting a shawl that’s easy but that I cannot decide if I like it.  I hope to finish it fairly soon and maybe I’ll sell it or give it away here on the blog.

And I’m making another Noro scarf; I think it’s #6 or 7 by now. Since I’m still trying to economise on yarn, to buy the 4 skeins of Noro Silk Garden for this scarf, I bought some colors I wasn’t in love with that were less expensive… I’m enjoying the knit, but not nearly as much as I have in the past and that’s got everything to do with the colors.

END OF WHINGE

Outlook for 2016:

I must make the sweater for my dear friend’s Ph.D. present.  This got started, but then she got breast cancer and had a double mastectomy, so her measurements have drastically changed….. She lives in OHIO so it will be a while before I can re-measure her again.

I think I’m gonna make a bunch of hats for this project: 25,000 tuques  Since Canada is taking in many Syrian refugees (25,000), and the tradition all across Canada is to provide newborn Canadians with the gift of a hat – a tuque – the idea is that all these new Canadians also need hats to welcome them. A lovely idea, do you think? So all the hats my family won’t wear along with others I’ll make will go to them.  By the way, the word “tuque” (sometimes spelled “touque”) is pronounced like TWO with a K on the end. 🙂

But other than that, I’m gonna be sewing. Not because I don’t still love to knit – I DO!  And I’d rather knit than sew. But I have a big, secret project that will take up much of my time for several months, and I need to make myself some clothes.  Yes, there are more clothes available for large women like me -more than there has ever been, but they are expensive and mostly poorly made.  I find it very difficult to spend $70 or more for a pair of jeans, especially when many of these items are made very cheaply by exploited and underpaid workers -mostly women- elsewhere. I do not want to adorn myself with garments that are made out of the misery of others.

Thanks to everyone who has ever read my blog. Here’s to 2016! So tell me – what are your plans for 2016?  Doesn’t have to be knitting; I’m nosy so I’d love to know.

 

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