For (too?) many years, I only had one WIP (work in progress) at a time. I was very strict about it, just like I wouldn’t allow myself to have several books to read at the same time. This of course meant that if I didn’t feel like working on the mitten or sock that was on my needles at the time, I wouldn’t then knit at all. (I was, however, “allowed” to plan for upcoming projects).
This summer I saw the light and it changed my knitting behaviour for good.
A bit of background: As a present for myself, and as a consolidation for having to quit all my other hobbies due to the relocation to a new country, I pre-enrolled to Knit Stars‘ season 5, and as a bundle purchased the access to Knit Stars 3 as well. While waiting for the new course to start, I have been binge-watching the 3rd season (or binging it whenever I have time for myself) – and since I didn’t have any expectations, I’ve been just mind-blown about it! I have learned so much from KS that it really deserves a post of it’s own, but what made me change my habits with WIP’s was the awesome knit-mythbusting by Ann Shayne and Kay Gardiner from Modern Daily Knitting (formerly known as Mason-Dixon Knitting).
In the short video Ann and Kay (bless their souls!) remind the viewers that knitting is not your job, it’s your hobby and pastime, and it should be enjoyable and not a burden. They call knitting the “dessert of life, the pleasure in every day”, and not a task to quickly cover. No-one will give you gold stars for finishing what you started – but you may get some additional joy from knitting, if you listen to yourself and allow yourself to take on projects that feel right at the time, and not just stubbornly stick to the one(s) you are already working on, even if today you don’t feel at all like knitting complicated lace or working with a cotton yarn instead of something soft and soothing. And this resonated loudly in my heart and soul, which seem to be programmed to just perform and accomplish.
So, what did this sudden liberation lead to? Well, at the moment I have not one, not two, but FOUR WIP’s – how did that happen? Who is this whimsical person just carelessly casting on new projects without finishing the old ones?
Knitting is fun, but in order to stop it from taking over my entire life (and house, and ruining my marriage and traumatising my child) I perhaps need to establish some basic rules. Thankfully I have limited resources of needles (eg. I only have one 80cm chord!), so that will help me withhold myself from casting on just whatever and whenever, because first I have to make the effort of moving the existing stitches to a scrap yarn to free the chord. And I hate that. But maybe other rules are in place as well, for example just one project per type at a time (e.g. socks, mittens, sweaters…)? Or a maximum limit of WIP’s? Or should I simply let my knitting mojo wander free and just go with it?
Let’s see if I’ll ever manage to finish another project, or are there just more and more WIP’s piling up on my path!