Sunday, July 1, 2007

My new approach

I can't sleep, and when I can't sleep, I typically think about yarn. On good nights, when I can sleep, I dream about yarn. Either way, it's not so bad. Foremost on my fiber-brain was the destashing/finishing aspirations I have. This new found interest in actually using my stash yarn arose just a couple weeks ago when I happened upon the wonderful world of knitting podcasts. Yes, it is 2007 and I am fairly media savvy, but I was absolutely stunned (and overjoyed to boot!) to discover that there are people everywhere who take the time to talk about stuff I'm interested in, and then put it on the web so I can download it to my ipod. It strikes me as the most wonderful thing in the world, and I'm completely captivated.

The first podcast I listened to was a KnitPicks podcast ( , and it was a pleasant discussion of knitting slumps and knitting goals (I've listened to several podcasts in the interim, so I don't mean to completely destroy the gist of her topic). Anyway, she decided to follow Elizabeth Zimmerman's Knitting Almanac for the year, knitting the projects Elizabeth suggests, month-by-month. That's way too daunting of a task for me, but my hat's off to her. I hope that we will get an update on her progress. Apparently she has a yahoo group, so perhaps I'll check that out just to see how everyone does.

The cool thing about itunes is that it makes suggestions for you of other podcasts that may interest you. I suddenly had dozens to choose from. I've listened to only three others so far: Cast On, Stash And Burn (, and Lime & Violet ( I've enjoyed all three, but I am not current on any of them! I just discovered that I am listening to Cast On podcasts from 2005!

I am closest to current with Stash and Burn. I've listened to nine episodes, and I believe they are up to 15. Those ladies can be credited for motivating my stash overhaul/project finishing. I have come up with the following parameters, which I hope will help with both the stash and the UFO issue:

1. For every two UFOs complete, I can cast on one new project. (2:1 odds in favor of UFOs - I've seen many people recommend this, and I hope it works for me).
2. After I have cast on four new projects from stash, I can purchase new yarn. This, I hope, will create a cyclical motivation. Must finish UFO to cast on new project. Must cast on four new projects before I can purchase new yarn.

For my purposes, the following rules apply:
1. A project is not complete until it is completely blocked, seamed, all ends woven in (and if it's a gift - wrapped and/or in the mail).
2. One sock counts as a finished object. I suspect this is my biggest "cheat". However, given my serious degree of Second Sock Syndrome, and given the fact that I have no problem wearing unmatched socks, I'm sticking with it.

This week I finished two projects - the baby hat and vest discussed in my earlier blog posting. This allows me to cast on the Mystery Stole tomorrow. I had Zephyr in my stash, so I am on track to remain true to my goals thus far.


Jenny and Nicole said...

Congratulations on getting motivated, Holly! I think that it is important to think about your stash because all of that yarn is potential creativity. I have to remember (1) I bought that yarn for a reason and (2) No yarn is too precious as there will always be more yarn. Keep knitting!

Heathermione said...

Wow, how did I miss out on knitting podcasts?? I think I'm going to have to download a bunch of these into my iPod before my trip to Tokyo this summer, just to have something to listen to on the plane (while I knit, of course).

Criosa said...

I just started listening to the podcasts within the last month or so too. I enjoy listening to the older ones, but it is kind of weird when you realize 'I remember that, oh yeah, this podcast is from a while ago.' lol

I'm trying to reduce the number of WIPs and limit the stash acquisition too. It's going ok, but every now and then...