On Friday, millions of people worldwide watched the opening ceremonies of the Olympic Games. Some small but significant subset of these people were mad knitters, competitors in the 2012 Ravellenic Games. From July 27th until August 12th, knitters will strive to embody Citius, Altius, Fortius in their knitting projects. I am a member of two different teams: Team Knitting Dead (from a Walking Dead fan forum on Ravelry) and Team MallRats (from the Minimall skein-swapping group on Ravelry).
In a nutshell, there are 32 different events to compete in, and most involve starting and finishing a project during the Olympics. I chose three projects from my queue for which I already had yarn, plus I set aside a bag of 40 minis (all glorious Socks That Rock Lightweight):
For Team MallRats, I’m competing in the Modular event. My goal is to complete 40 puffs during the Olympics. This works out to a little more than two a day. Not coincidentally, this will catch me up to where I’m “supposed” to be in terms of completely 366 puffs this year. Check out my pretty minis!
For Team Knitting Dead, I’m competing in the Cowl, Hat, and Shawl events. (It’s conceivable that I might finish all three, in which case I will consider adding one of my many (many, many) other queued-with-yarn-assigned projects.) For the Cowl event, I’m making Eli a bright orange Clewe cowl to match his sweater. With bulky weight Duchess, this project should be quickly completed. The to-be-matched sweater:
For the Hat event, I pulled out yarn I bought for a Greenery Beret while checking out a LYS. It’s very pretty and very soft:
Finally, for the Shawl event, I brought out my DK Capra and the pattern I bought to go with it: Parquet Tiles.
It’s come to my attention that I have a number of projects that are nearing hibernation … not to mention a couple of projects in deep hibernation. I find that these projects are neglected for any number of reasons. What they have in common is this: although they are not taking up any actual knitting time, they are taking up mental knitting time. Every time I look at my projects page in Ravelry, I see these partially-finished projects and meditate on the whys and wherefores of what it would take to turn UFOs into FOs. Every time I pick a few project bags to go to Knit Night or to a friend’s house for knitting, my fingers linger over certain bags … I don’t really want to bring them, but they use up mental cycles. This, dear reader, is a problem that I can fix.
I hearby declare January to be “Finish It or Frog It” month. It’s time to take stock. Bring out all your projects, whether on needles or waste yarn or whatever, and decide whether you are going to finish it, or not. You can use whatever criteria floats your boat. For myself, I decided that I should at the very least WANT the finished object, or ENJOY the process — ideally, both. If neither of these things were true, it was time to frog it.
Here are all my projects* as of this morning, regardless of hibernation status:
I had already declared my Carmen Banana Sock Monkey “done” earlier this week, so she isn’t pictured. (Carmen herself is complete, but I never made the last few clothing items — and I’ve decided I’m probably not going to.) I dug up my two deep hibernation projects for this too: a mostly-complete jacket (for the me of size six-years-ago) and a mitered-square leftover-sock-yarn blanket. I considered each project in turn, carefully weighing my two major criteria.
Top to bottom, left to right, here are the final decisions:
- Very Orange Hoodie: kind of boring to work on, but my son really wants it, so it’s in!
- Northern Lights Jacket: doesn’t fit me now (if it ever did), has poor quality colorwork (one of my first efforts), and I’m dreading the duplicate stitch — it’s OUT even though it hurts (a lot) to frog a complete body, a complete sleeve, and one half-done sleeve
- Princess Wander’s Aran Cape: this is my “at work” project for the yarn shop; cool pattern, and I’m looking forward to having the cape someday — IN!
- Ongoing Forever Sock Yarn Blanket: I’m giving this blanket a second chance — I do really want the FO, and I think the work will be less painful now that I can knit left to right as well as right to left — IN!
- Yggdrasil in Blue: I’ve already designated this one my target project for the Neglected Project KAL I started in the 52 in 52 group. I’ve already made great progress — finished the 2nd side and turned the 2nd corner — so it is IN. (I really want the blanket, but the back-and-forth edging was killing me. Left-to-right knitting saves this project!)
- Hellesbores Wristlets: I’m not enjoying the knitting, but I really, really want the FO — IN!
- Little Brown Aeolian Shawl: I keep getting bogged down on this project, but I love working with KP Alpaca Cloud, and I love the FO, so it’s IN!
- Sheep Head Hat: I’m a bit intimidated by altering the chart from 9 colors to the 6 I have, but I must have a sheep head hat, so it’s IN!
- Finally Summit: This is the project that gave me left-to-right knitting, for which I am grateful. But far too many people have noticed that the stripey orange yarn looks suspiciously like corn snakes… and frankly the fussy knitting is losing it’s charm. I feel like this yarn could be pretty instead of freaky, so off to the frog pond — it’s OUT.
- Sept 2011 Sock Club Socks: I’m nearly done, it’s a fun pattern, just have to get past the heel turn on sock #2 and I’m golden — IN! (I’m also highly motivated by wanting to start (and finish??) my Nov 2011 shipment before the first 2012 shipment comes in just a few weeks — yikes!)
- Damask Potion: Although I want to want this one … I don’t, really. The yarn and pattern just aren’t coming together. Both will probably do better with another partner … as much as it pains me, OUT!
- Kensington Fingerless Mitts: Likewise, the mitts. Wish I could love you as much as I want to! Alas, you do not quite fit, and increasingly I can’t really imagine wearing gloves past my elbows. I want that pretty green yarn for something else anyway.
- Tappen Zee Pulled Taffy: I really want this little cardi! I’m almost done — just a few dozen rows of stockinette, plus the bottom edging. If I finish Yggdrasil fast enough, I’ll do this one for the Neglected Project KAL as well. IN!
Here is the IN crowd:
And the OUT crowd:
After several hours’ work, here is all my “new” yarn (including yarn I had not yet started using on the jacket):
* All of my projects for myself — I decided not to include my two current design projects in this process, since I am working on those for other people.