2022 has been a lacklustre year on the knitting front. Something has been lacking and I’m not sure if it is enthusiasm or inspiration. It certainly isn’t time because I’ve wasted oodles of that over the year. One thing is clear, though: if I want 2023 to be different I’m going to have to come up with a plan.
Right away I know that socks are going to need to feature heavily. My sock drawer has been depleted over the year, partly by natural wastage and partly by bad washing causing shrinkage. I have socks now which are fine once they are on my feet, but which are a struggle to get on and off. A few pairs remain unscathed, but these need to be added to across the course of the next year. I think 6 more pairs would be ideal, but that might be a push. Then again, setting a tough goal and not quite achieving it is better than setting an easy goal and not quite achieving that.
I’m currently working on one pair of socks which I’m hoping to finish between now and the new year. They are “frankensocks” – the legs knit from one left-over yarn and the feet from another. It will hopefully look more intentional than it sounds! The two yarns I’ve chosen co-ordinate quite well together. One standard ball of sock yarn always provides me with enough yardage to knit three socks, so two balls will make three pairs if combined with some imagination.
My big knitting win this year has been the most recent project – the pink cardigan. I couldn’t be more pleased with this now it is off the needles and regularly on my back. It is exactly what I wanted: big, cosy, smart in a laid-back way, and definitely eye-catching. I could have got away with knitting it one size smaller which is always good to know. I enjoyed the knitting and it’s nice to wear which gives me hope going forward.
What I’m taking away from this project is a desire to knit up some more vintage patterns. I think, therefore, that I should aim for four garments in the coming year using vintage instructions. As the pink cardigan is part of a twinset, perhaps the short-sleeved base layer should be the first thing I attempt. It won’t end up as a true twinset because the jumper will be in a different yarn, but I have a plentiful supply of pale pink wool which might work well with the bright pink of the cardi. Alternatively, a school grey could work as I’ve been happily pairing the cardigan with grey trousers. I can have some fun over the Christmas break looking at all the vintage offerings and seeing what else I might like to add to my list.
As well as the actual knitting, I’m aware that I need to do something about my storage of both yarn and finished garments. I have the knits that I wear regularly on shelves in my wardrobe, but they tend to get rather jumbled through the week and I’m not always good at re-folding them when I’ve been rifling through them. I’ve been looking at storage options for a while and it boils down to adding some kind of boxes/baskets on the shelves to keep my knits in better order, or putting each knit into a “packing cube” to keep it under control. I haven’t quite found what I’m imagining, so it’s an ongoing search. I’ve done better, however, with the storage for my yarn stock as I recently bought a couple of clear plastic containers to sit in my knitting cabinet. I particularly wanted clear containers so I could still have the benefit of seeing the lovely yarns I’ve got to hand.
The final element towards better planning and recording is to set up a new knitting notebook. I used to keep a note of all the projects I worked on and any tweaking of the pattern, start and finish dates etc, in a notebook. This has fallen by the wayside over recent years, but I miss it. I think the socks I’m currently working on would be a very good place to start a brand new book and, luckily, I have suitable notebooks to hand.
It’s been good to lay out my thoughts in black and white like this. I already feel like my 2023 knitting is going to be much better. In fact, I feel inspired to pick up those socks right now.