The year in making: Looking ahead

20

I am really happy with what I knit and sewed in 2014, and I’m really excited about this year. I actually have so many plans that I’m trying to rein myself in — it would be really easy to be ambitious now and then feel like I let myself down later, so I’ve been really thinking about what I want to do this year in a way that makes space for change. In no particular order, here are some of the big things I want to do/make this year, though I’ve almost certainly forgotten something.

Our first tree!

Our first tree!

1. This is an easy one since it’s top of mind right now: I want to make more ornaments for our Christmas tree. This was the first year L and I had our own tree, and it was a little sparsely decorated. It was fine, and I think almost all the ornaments we have are hand made, but none of them were made by me, which felt a little strange. Growing up, our tree was always a mish-mash of hand-crafted, homemade, and store-bought ornaments, and the jumble was so cheerful and fun. While there is plenty of time until there will be kid-made ornaments on our tree, I would like to spend some time (well in advance) making some ornaments for us. Right now I’m hoping to make 12. I’m thinking I’ll use leftovers to make a few variations of these stranded balls (I really like these cabled ones too) and I love these wonky owls. In an effort not to only fill the tree with knitting (though it’s tempting), this sewn owl is on my list, as is this little house and this map-petal ornament (which would also be really nice with a robust wrapping paper). Do you have any favourites I should add to the list?

2. More socks! I knit 12 pairs of socks last year, 10 of which were for me, and I really thought I’d be set for a while. But, of course, handknit socks wear out eventually and some of my oldest pairs are decidedly out of the regular rotation (though they’re great for sleeping in). I’d like to knit another 12 pairs this year (I’ve even picked out some of the yarns!) in a mix of super-warm worsted-weight socks, plain fingering-weight, and fun patterned ones (Dawlish is high on my list), plus some gifts of course.

Lovely plain socks, knit up in   Nomadic Yarns Twisty Sock in Sweater Weather.

Lovely plain socks, knit up in Nomadic Yarns Twisty Sock in Sweater Weather.

3. Keep knitting from my stash. I thought was really doing well with this in 2014, but somehow my stash still swelled by more than 5,000 yards, so there’s a way to go (not that I want to get rid of my stash or anything, I just want to use it). I’ve been really enjoying Felicia’s posts about stashing, and while I’m not planning to set limits on purchases or anything (I just rebel against those), I have ben enjoying my stash lately and I’m hoping that continues this year.

4. Speaking of stash, I’ve built up a little fabric stash this year. My big sewing goal this year is to figure out shirts/tops. This was one of the big reasons I wanted to start sewing, so it’s time to focus on it. I’m going to ease in with cotton knit t-shirts, but I do want to work up to more careful, tailored pieces. I see a lot of muslins in my future, and I’m okay with that.

Bedford swatch in Tosh Vintage, in Tart.

Bedford swatch in Tosh Vintage, in Tart.

5. Along with garment sewing, I want to do more garment knitting. I wear my knits all the time, and more sweaters would be a welcome addition to my closet. First up is Bedford, which I’ve swatched for already and will probably cast on for pretty soon. I’ve loved this pattern for ages, and it finally occurred to me that it was a perfect match for the sweater’s worth of Tosh Vintage I have in my stash. I’m also eyeing Epistrophy and Asta Sollilja (my parents bought me YOKES for Christmas, which is very exciting), as well as the Sibella Cardigan, all of which would be great fits for my wardrobe (they’re also all patterns I already own, which is a whole other part of knitting from stash). I’m not sure I’ll actually get to four sweaters this year, but I think two is realistic (based on the last few years), and maybe this year I’ll push it to three. We shall see.

So, there you have it, my big 5. What are your plans for the year? Almost certainly I’ll read other lists and get inspired and want to come back append this list, but oh well. That’s what makes all of this fun, right?

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20 thoughts on “The year in making: Looking ahead

  1. Julia M.

    These are great goals (I love your current socks, by the way)!

    It’s a good idea to post goals … I think I’ll make a posting about that, too, and soon – maybe in the middle of next week, that should be fine.

    Congratulations on getting “Yokes” for Christmas! I have eyed it on ravelry and there are so many beautiful patterns in it – I do not have a paypal account, but maybe I will buy the paperdoll sweater or “tortoise and hare” – I just LOVE that one (the tortoise is so cute!)

    1. Angela Hickman Post author

      I love the Tortoise and Hare pattern too! I also really love that Kate Davies often reworks her charts for accessories, so you can kind of practice them on a smaller piece before committing to something big. That sweater is so cute, though.

      1. Julia M.

        Yes, I agree. This is something I love about her designs as well. What I love as well about her is that she is always happy to show what others have made with her patterns – I remember her enthusiastic writings when she introduced the several versions of her “Paperdoll” sweater (my favourite being the one with the Totoro-collar).

  2. introvertedknitter

    While ambitious, your goals are also realistic, the best kind in my opinion.I have just a few this year, mainly continuations of last year, but I am also hoping to complete the personal sock club, from the Stitch Addiction podcast. Best of luck!

    1. Angela Hickman Post author

      I was thinking about setting myself a personal sock club, but so often I choose what socks to knit based on what else is on my needles: complicated lace shawl? plain socks; boring stockinette sweater? fun socks. Maybe next year I’ll plan out a sock club, though. I certainly have enough yarn and patterns stashed to make it work!

      1. introvertedknitter

        I thought about that problem and decided it might be easier to have more than one pair on the needles to help alleviate that issue. Although, now I have quite a few different projects and at least two pairs of socks on the needle at a time so there is that.

  3. caityrosey

    12 socks seems like a good replacement goal if you tend to go through them. Or if your cats steal them to nurse on, as mine do.

    1. Angela Hickman Post author

      So far, Ganymede seems uninterested in stealing socks (she’s a cat, though, so that could change any time). Mainly the plan to knit 12 pairs means that, after the gift socks are accounted for, I’ll have three or four everyday pairs for myself, and a couple of more fun ones too. I don’t want to only knit for replacement lest it start to feel like a chore! (Is that possible with knitting?)

  4. Hannah Ackroyd

    I love your list! I would love to vary my crafts this year as 2014 seemed to be absorbed with cross stitching! But I have two big cross stitch gifts to make this year so my fabric and yarn stashes may be neglected once again!

  5. Audry

    I agree with the not limited yarn purchases. I tend to do worse when I put into place a “no more yarn” rule. But I think I will do my best this year to choose projects that could use up more stash.

    I look forward to seeing your tree decorations too!

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