Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Knit-stalgia

Like so many wonderful knit bloggers and other type A personalities out there, I'm feeling the need to recap my year and think about some creative goals for 2013. And since I'm a scientist at heart, I'm doing this the best way I know how: through the mighty Excel spreadsheet.

Figure 1. This figure displays the number of finished objects (blue) completed in 2012, 2011, and 2010 as well as the works in progress (pink) still on the needles: current WIPs were begun or worked on in 2012 while ancient WIPs were begun in 2011 or earlier. Total numbers of projects in each category as well as data labels for 2012 FOs and current WIPs were added.
From this graph, we can see that 2012 was slightly more productive than past years (44 FOs vs. 41) with hats being the standout category for FOs (n=18). I finished more cowls and miscellaneous items (bracelets, cuffs, dishclothes) than in previous years, as well as my first pair of completed mittens. I finished fewer mitts, shawls, and scarves than the past couple of years, which was an interesting trend and rather unexpected trend.

My 2012 finished socks (n=6) were about average (n=5 in 2011, n=8 in 2010), but considering that last year I vowed to make 2012 my Year of Socks, that's pretty sad. Halfway through the year I got quite distracted, I haven't finished a pair since June! I have, however, somehow accumulated 12 pairs of sock WIPs on the needles! TWELVE PAIRS!! If I keep going at this rate, soon I'll have more current sock WIPs than FOs of all time.

Although my year of socks idea totally backfired, I did get make a good start on designing, publishing 7 patterns (3 free, 4 paid) which are hosted on Ravelry, Craftsy, and Patternfish.

Top L to R: Beribboned Hat, Giving Comfort, Huacaya. Bottom L to R: Beribboned Wrists, Fiasco, Ribby Holiday Socks, and Syrinx Shells.

I am ever so thankful to everyone who supported my endeavors this year. Whether you purchased a pattern, provided feedback, modeled for photos, test knitted, donated some finished knits to charity, blogged about my pattern, provided yarn support, featured my pattern at a show, or just plain cheered me on here on the blog, I appreciated every bit of it, so thank you! I've enjoyed seeing my ideas come to life on other people's needles and am looking forward to seeing what design opportunities come up in 2013.

One very big accomplishment of 2012 was learning how to spin. I went from my first spindle to my first wheel in 11 months and I am completely in love with the process. Even though I have not produced a ton of handspun, I've learned a lot by experimenting and reading up on differnt sheep breeds in my ongoing Spinner's Study. And now that I have the wheel I feel like my focused spinning time will increase and hopefully a bunch of gorgeous, finished skeins will magically appear.

Since I've realized that I suck at sticking to specific goal lists (like finish 13 of anything in 2013) I'm going to keep my 2013 goals fairly broad:

Design goals:
    • publish a Malabrigo Quickie (in progress)
    • publish a design with Cephalopod Yarns (in progress)
    • publish a design with The Verdant Gryphon
    • publish a design with KnitPicks
    • publish in an online or print magazine
    • finish and publish 4 more socks for my How I Met Your Mother series (2 in progress)
    • design a shawl
Non-Design Knitting goals:
    • finish (or frog) all of my ancient WIPs (started in 2010-2011)
    • knit a pair of socks from handspun yarn
    • finish my First Garment vest (in progress)
    • knit a real sweater for me
    • work on my (long neglected) sock yarn blanket
Spinning goals:
    • spin a truly worsted-style skein using short forward draw
    • spin a truly woolen-style skein using long draw
    • spin a skein of 3-ply sock yarn
    • spin a skein of laceweight 2-ply on my spindle
That's a pretty do-able list, I think. And of course, the overall goal is to knit down my beautiful, embarrassingly large stash. While I did not go entirely cold sheep this year, I did significantly cut down my 2012 yarn purchases from 2011 and I hope to continue in that vein. I have too many pretty skeins squirreled away not to use them and with all the spinning, I'll just keep adding more!

I'm sure that's enough Type A babble for today. As usual, that took much longer than I expected and was a diverting way to procrastinate away some time better spent on something else! (Old habits die hard...) Once again, thanks so much to everyone who reads this blog and helps me fuel my various obsessions, it wouldn't be the same without you! Have a great year, everyone.

17 comments:

  1. Woman, I am in awe of your data-nerdiness. It's beyond awesome. Congratulations on kicking butt and taking names last year! I'm looking forward to following your progress in 2013!

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    1. Hehe I'm glad the data was appreciated!

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  2. Your spreadsheet Rocks! Wishing you all kinds of spinning and knitting fun and success in 2013!

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  3. OMG! I so want to do a graph like you, but I will resist. Maybe in a few years. I also envy you with designing. I would like to do more of that in 2013. I have designed 3 pairs of socks, but only 1 has been written up. I will need to write the other 2 up and design some more this year. Thanks for the inspiration.

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    1. I can't wait to see your sock designs! I'm sure they will be wonderful.

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  4. Love the graph. I may or may not have a similar one of my own, but if I do I certainly don't have the confidence to publish it on the internet. Nerds rule, and all that :)

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    1. Publish it! Knitters do love nerds. :)

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  5. What would we do without Excel? I would be lost, although I don't use it to evaluate my knitting, although I really should after seeing how you've put it to work. I have been so impressed by how quickly you have learned to spin, you make gorgeous handspun and I cannot wait to see what you spin this year! You have a great list there, knowing you this year will be even more productive!

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    1. Aw, thank you! Excel really is a big part of my life...(sadly? haha)

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  6. I love your spreadsheet! Spreadsheets hold all of life's answers, I'm convinced. I already spreadsheet my spending, my Rav swapping, and certain aspects of my short story writing, maybe it's time to go full-force with knitting data points as well!

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    1. Go for it! I support spending spreadsheets as well.

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  7. Wow, I can't believe that you put it all into Excel. I love your list, there are so many fun things on there that I cannot wait to hear about as the year goes on. I am so glad I found your blog! I love reading it and hearing your thoughts about everything. And all the designing you do is so inspiring. Happy 2013!

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    1. I'm happy you found it, too! I've loved reading your blog and it introduced me to so many others I enjoy, so thank you for that, too!

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  8. Life is too short to knit things you don't feel like knitting. Perhaps this year was meant to be the year of hats.

    Good luck with sorting out all of your ancient WIPs. That was my secret goal last year and it was a bit harder to do than I thought.

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    1. Yeah, I anticipate that it will be difficult but what's the use unless the bar is set high, right? :)

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  9. Congratulations on such a productive year! Noreen1009, on Ravelry.

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