Sunday, December 31, 2006

Knitting System 2.0

If we're in the age of Internet 2.0, I figure the year 2007 can be my own personal year of Knitting System 2.0. Better. Faster. Smarter. More organized. If nothing else, maybe a little neater.

Knitting System 2.0 is directly related to Christmas Present #3: the Knitpicks KIPer knitting bag set. Can I tell you how much I l-o-v-e love these bags? No more schlepping around both a shoulder bag and a knitting tote. No more leaving the knitting tote behind and then finding myself with time on my hands and no knitting to occupy them. The knitting stays in one bag, all the purse-stuff stays in matching purse-sized bag which then attaches very securely to the knitting bag. Voila, they both go everywhere together neat as you please, and I'll never be stuck without my knitting again. The best part: there are, count 'em, three bags for the knitting, each in a different size. Here is where Knitting System 2.0 figures in.

Three bags; three projects going at once. I'm a fan of juggling multiple projects. As a kid, I wasn't happy unless I was reading more than one book at a time. I never lost track of a plot (maybe because I devoured stories so quickly that I never put down a book long enough for that to happen) and I always had something "on deck" to match my reading mood of the moment. It makes perfect sense for me to employ the same logic with my knitting.

BUT... With adulthood comes those persnickety adult responsibilities, like getting to work on time, making dinner for my family and making at least a token effort towards cleaning and doing laundry. All while making time to actually have fun with said family. While I could sit and read for hours on end as a child, as an adult though I would dearly love to sit and knit for hours on end, the reality is I usually squeeze my knitting in while waiting on line at the bank, riding the subway to work or late at night after Baby M is asleep and everything else has been either finished or put off for another day. This means that I need to limit the number of projects I have going at once or I risk never finishing another one. Ever.

My former system, Knitting System 1.0, involved keeping my projects in canvas tote bags. While there was a certain environmentally-responsible attractiveness to that system, the reality was the tote bags always got dirty (why are most tote bags made in "natural" colors -- aka "please, filth, come cling to me where everyone can see you"?), I was constantly worried that stuff would pop out the open top while I wasn't looking (when knitters rule the world, you will see a complete revision in tote-bag design, mark my words), and worst of all, the number of projects I could juggle at once was limited only by my number of tote bags.

I have a lot of tote bags.

Which is why Knitting System 2.0 relies so heavily on the KIPer bags. Not only do I now only have to grab a single bag...not only do I not have to worry about subway-grey tote bag bottoms or runaway balls of yarn...but I will be limited to three projects on the needles at once. I've even decided on an equitable division of labor within the three projects. At any given time, I will have one project on the needles for myself, one for the house, and one for a loved one. That way, each of my three main knitting areas gets a fair shot at project completion, and once a project in that particular category is completed, I'm free to start another. Neat, huh?

The caveats:
Knitting System 2.0 will only be applied to projects moving forward into 2007 and projects currently residing in the KIPer bags. This means the two outstanding projects from 2006 -- the silk stole for my mother and the mixed-fiber ruana for me -- are safe in their canvas totes, and I am free to work on them whenever I choose. If I do decide to move one of those projects into a KIPer bag, however, it then becomes part of Knitting System 2.0 and must remain there until it is finished.

So, here's my knitting project wish list for 2007. (Some people make resolutions; I make lists of all the things I hope I'll get a chance to knit in the coming year. We'll see at this time next year how far I've made it through the list and what else has wiggled its way in during the intervening months.) Items marked with an asterisk are already in progress.

For myself...
  • an Elizabeth Zimmermann Fitted Bog Jacket in splendiferous Manos del Uruguay*
  • a pair of felted clogs
  • another sweater or jacket or shawl, design to be decided later

For the house...

For my loved ones...
  • a pair of fingerless mittens for DH
  • a skull cap for DH
  • a sweater for Baby M

Happy New Year 2007, everyone. Knit on!


Anonymous said...

best of luck with your new system!

Anonymous said...

p.s. you really should try needle felting! it's quite easy and fun, too (and it really doesn't take very long to do, either). : )