Monday, May 31, 2010

What's a surefire way to...

...increase the number of projects you have on needles at any given point? Well, if you're like me, it means you've finished one and started 12 more. Or something close to that feeling.

A couple of years ago, I started 'filling in the blanks' when I joined Ravelry. And it's really helped me get organized with what yarn I have and to some lesser degree kept me from shopping for more. Well, maybe. I can say that it's put it into a better perspective. That's probably much more accurate. And I'm glad. I do know that there are times when I have gone and checked into the amounts that I already have on hand, and have chosen to NOT go shopping. Granted, it's rare, but it has happened. What it's also done for me, is to give me a realistic view of how much it takes to knit up a sweater dye lot wise. And it's shown me that I have a lot of mismatched dye lots even when I know I have nearly 45 skeins of Hobby Lobby Sweet Delights Baby in Angel, but then know that they're split into 17 different dye lots. Which, on a good day would be fine for knitting up baby sweaters, but not so good when it comes to knitting up a blanket. I learned my lesson long ago about matching dye lots. Just ask the turtleneck sweater I started for myself in Navy wool where the sleeves don't exactly match the rest of the sweater. I'm not sure I have that one listed on my Ravelry projects list I was so upset with the revelation the day I noticed the difference.

Fast forward to making my Mom's cable sweater for her 2008 birthday. When I had found the Paton's Classic Wool on clearance (no less) at an AC Moore store in NY, I just KNEW I needed to knit Mom a whole sweater. I didn't have a clue at the time which sweater I wanted to knit and since I'd been making mostly baby things I just grabbed all they have of the Too Teal wool sitting on the shelf. After all, I didn't want to get back to California and find that I'd been 'just this much' too short to finish a sweater for Mom. Heaven knows I have enough partial projects just sitting there waiting to be 'never finished' and I don't want to add to that pile. So..all 22 skeins of the Too Teal Wool jumped off the shelf, into the basket and were air sucked into zip lock bags to be shoved into my suitcase and brought home. Great plan-huh?

But here's the thing. Her sweater?

Took less than 7 skeins of yarn. Do the math. 22-7=way too much. So I thought I'd start some more projects. That, I told myself, would chew up a whole lot really fast! Couple of coffee sleeves, .23 skein. More coffee sleeves when Dad lost the first set? .16 of a skein. One tam, nearly one more skein. This was not going nearly as fast as I had hoped. I wanted to create some space in my bins!

So last month as I was pulling wool out of my bins before heading up to NY for the daughter's Master's Degree Graduation, I thought I'd pull a couple of skeins of the Too Teal and knit up a pair of socks for a4A! Yea, This would do the trick! After all when I knit for the medical transport for the troops, it goes right through a fair amount of yarn quickly! This was a fabulous idea! After all I had bits and pieces of black left over from black wool hats that would work well for the toes and cuffs. Oh baby, we were going to go to to town and burn up some needles. That feeling lasted until you learn I had this much left over after knitting up ...

...not just a pair of socks but also a Mushroom Cap as well!

Now, I know that the label says Merino Wool, but I'm thinking there has GOT to be some rabbit in there making it multiply. It just won't go away. And it's ooooooooooooooooooh so NOT my favorite color to work with. Here I thought it would just get used up fast and I could start more prepromised projects that I've had rattling around in my head. So, putting those left overs away, I got to working on some little projects that I had been waiting to do. Apparently one wasn't enough because...

Here's six more that I started since Thursday of last week. And my grey sweater and Mom's white hat and brother's black and red hat isn't anywhere to be seen, are they?

I'm thinking if you want the size of your project pile to be increased? Just tell yourself that you have to work out of your stash of yarn and the list of projects that you actually intended to do specifically for people who KNOW that you promised them that you would..and you'll not have to worry about having something on your needles.

Now, of course, I'm not going to tell you how to determine which one you're going to work on first, because three of those things were all started on Friday, and the other three were started on Saturday.

Yes, by me. Yes, while I'm on ice and pain pills. I'm guessing that it's my short attention span due to the pain pills that's causing it all to get so out of control.

My story and I'm sticking to it. Because I have eight more projects all charted out and ready to go. I'm not sure that I can hold out much longer and keep from casting them on. I do have the needles - that's what happens prior to having Ravelry so you're not aware that you already own a gazillion and twelve pairs of (US) 7's (4.5mm) and you end up picking up one more to go.

And Ravelry tells me I still have 13.45 skeins of Too Teal left all in the same dye lot. But Mom doesn't need another sweater in the same color and I can't wear that color.