Year of Making: 2017.

On the first day of this year, I decided to commit to one small thing: “put energy into a making project every day.”

At first, that meant a conscious decision to sit down with a project every day. Sometimes it meant sleepily knitting a few rows before bed so that I would keep my commitment. As I went on, it became easier and easier. As I got more in the habit of doing something everyday, I found myself reaching for my projects more and more.

I’ve kept track of what I’ve worked on in a spreadsheet. I’ve been more than a little curious to see how the numbers would shake out. It’s no surprise that I spent 342 of the last 365 days knitting. I tend to reach for my knitting more than anything else. On 266 of those days, I worked on socks. I love knitting socks so it’s not much of a surprise that three quarters of my knitting days involved socks.

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I finished my box of socks a few months ago, but that didn’t stop me from continuing on. I’ve finished five more pairs of socks for myself since then. I love the look of them all laid out. This last pair was knit on Christmas vacation, so it hasn’t made it home to meet it’s new sock drawer mates.

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When I wasn’t knitting on socks, I knit up shawls, hats, mitts, and even a tiny owl for my mom. I’ve spent a significant bit of time cross stitching, quilting and sewing. There were even a few days of canning, fermenting, and crochet thrown in. Looking back it feels like a productive year:

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There is something about looking at a year’s worth of creating, thinking about how my hands knit every stitch, cut all the fabric, pitted every cherry. More than just the products of my hands though, my makes all feel like teeny time capsules, moments of my life molded into something tangible. Knitting socks at the beach with my family, figuring out how to sew my very first garment, picking cherries with Joshua.

Writing about everything has really crystallized that notion that there is a story in each of my makes. I love thinking about that and having the blog to look back at all of it.

Now that my year of making is coming to a close, I don’t believe I’m finished with it. I’m not sure that I will keep track of things daily like I have been, but that idea of putting “energy into a making project every day” still rings true for me. It’s exciting to think about a future full of years of making.

At any rate, I’ll be right here tomorrow, the first day of the new year, spending a bit of my day creating something.


Happy making!

In Fits and Starts

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This week has been a struggle to keep the commitment to making. And yes, I realize I’m talking about days 2-5. I have quite nicely sick, in the nobody hug me and I don’t even feel like making a sandwich kind of way. On the first day, I knew it was coming and was in denial so I cast on a hat I promised to Kevin months ago. Thank goodness it was beautiful yarn (and soft, such lovely silk content), that helped keep me going for the ribbing and a repeat.
On the second day, I finished Joshua’s second sock. To be fair, it only lacked a toe and weaving in of ends, but I did finish it. They fit him quite nicely and I’m happy to report that when he grows out of them, likely sometime at the end of the month, they will fit me as well. Right now he can’t wear things out before he grows out of them, which is great for those of us whose sizes he’s passing through.
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Nearly man-sized socks – Knit Picks Felici in “Beyond the Wall”

By the third day, I had to make myself work on something. Two blanket rows, that’s it, but I felt good about it. As I was zooming along, I discovered an error or three in the first row and decided to push through. It’s my first crochet, I thought, of course there are mistakes. It’s ok, I thought, nothing is perfect. It’s hardly noticeable, I thought, no one but me will know. And so this morning I decided that, of course, I’ll just frog the thing.

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Well, that’s just not right.

I spent last night working on Kevin’s hat and today I am going to cast on my January socks. I feel my making mojo coming back, along with my ability to breathe. Usually, when I lose my drive or don’t feel particularly well, I don’t knit or make for days at a time. It’s heartening to look back on this week and see some progress as a result.
Tonight, at least one of the next two pairs of socks are going on my needles, one with my traditional recipe and one toe up and two-at-a-time:

 


Year of Making (YoM) day 2: Cast on hat for Kevin

YoM day 3: Finished Joshua’s sock! (pictures to come)

YoM day 4: Worked on granny stripe blanket

YoM day 5: Hat progress


Happy weekend and happy making!

The Long and Winding Road

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Yesterday, for New Year’s Day, my family participated in one of our time-honored traditions. We road tripped back from Tennessee. Now, Tennessee is not incredibly far from Maryland, but it is not that close either. Usually the 8 hour drive takes us somewhere between 10 and 12, since we are most often travelling on the worst days possible. I fully expected this to be the case on New Year’s Day, and had visions of long hours of knitting while Kevin (dear BF) drove and long hours of dream knitting while I drove.

It was a pleasant surprise, then, when we clocked the trip at just over eight and a half hours! Alas, I was only able to knit the gusset and half of the foot in Joshua’s (my son) sock. I did plan somewhere around 4352 projects while I was driving, though. With all of that extra time we had, I decided to try a new project that has been tempting me.

Year of Making, Day 1: Joshua’s second sock and a granny stripe blanket!

I have been itching to cast on a scrappy granny stripe blanket. However, I am not a crocheter. At all. Last Christmas, I crocheted two hexagons – but with BF’s mother (an expert crocheter) right there, answering every question. With my unexpected free time last night, I thought it was the perfect time to go for it. What have I got to lose? They do say crochet is easy to rip back if you mess up. So far, so good. I love this “blanket” already!

I am making my blanket according to the advice from Chelsea from the Legacy Knitz Podcast. I made three magic knot balls to start, all from mini skeins I have collected in one way or another over the past few years. I’m using a 3.5 mm hook and chained on 360+2. From there, I’m just following the granny stripe tutorial from Bella Coco.

Today, we are off but the kids are not, so it’s hot coffee, a lunch date, and some leisurely crocheting for me. Happy New Year and happy making!