#MakeNine2018 – Part 1 of 3

“I’ve made a plan.”

Those are truly my famous last words. If you look back through the entries of this much-neglected blog, you will see that I make a lot of plans and then I change my mind. I said a few posts ago that 2018 was supposed to be the year of the sock, and actually I have completed one pair and I’m already onto the sole of a second pair. I do think I will continue to make plenty of socks this year, but I’m not going to worry about how many. The idea for now is that I’ll just always have a sock on my needles and they’ll be finished whenever they’re finished. I’m dong this mainly because socks are a good mindless project that I can do, for the most part, while I’m reading or watching video lectures for school. However, some of the fervor to crank out tons of socks has definitely subsided.

I can honestly say, I’ve completely lost interest in my t-shirt yarn projects. I have a giant collection of t-shirt yarn – beautiful yarn from Ganxxet – that I’m still not quite ready to part with, but I probably should de-stash some of it to someone with a little more love for this particular fiber. I’ve learned I just don’t get as pumped about t-shirt yarn as I did when I first discovered it. I’m going to see if my necklaces start selling more in the Spring and then I’ll re-assess whether it makes sense to discontinue that line and give away my beautiful t-shirt yarns.

In another blog post, my plan was to slow down production for the shop and focus more on “selfish knitting.” However, I think I’ve found a way to do both. I’m going to try to get one item listed a week – weather it’s a sock, a chunky hat that only takes a couple hours max to do (and I actually enjoy those), or maybe even a quickly whipped up t-shirt yarn necklace (if only to reduce the guilt caused by that giant stash of t-shirt yarn collecting dust).

So suffice it to say, with my many changing whims, I was hesitant to get on the #MakeNine2018 bandwagon. However… there just so happens to be nine projects that I am especially excited to make this year. I have a few others I’m hoping to make, and you can see them all in my Ravelry bundles, but I’ve prioritized the nine projects below, and even come up with – dare I say – a plan for when I will complete them.

I probably say this every time, but I do feel a little more confident in my ability to follow through with this. I really am truly excited about making each of these pieces. They are not ones that I just landed on to fulfill the nine boxes of the hashtag. I have been hoping to make these for a long time now, and I even have most of the yarn already. I think where most of my plans have gone south in the past is when I’ve tried to make the same thing over and over and over again. Once I lose interest and motivation, the plan dies. All of these pieces are fairly different from one another and several (maybe even all) involve learning a new skill, which should also keep me entertained.

So here’s the… “plan”…

Screen Shot 2018-01-31 at 10.55.52 AM

(this photo collage was also shared on my personal Instagram – @amandandandanda – follow me to see my #makenine2018 progress!!)

Descriptions of my first three #MakeNine2018:

  1. Superbulky Grandpa Sweater by Joji Locatelli – I have in fact, already started this one! I just finished the bust and will be starting on the button holes section soon. I don’t think I’m going to do the waist shaping. For one, I don’t find it personally flattering for my shape, but secondly I think the decreases / increases are a little too obvious on such bulky yarn from what I can see on other FOs. Speaking of yarn, I’m using – and I ADORE – Mrs. Moon’s “Plump” in Darjeeling which I purchased from my neighborhood yarn shop, The Perfect Blend Yarn and Tea Shop in Saugerties, NY. This yarn is such a joy to work with – so soft and from what I understand it does not pill. It is, however, fuzzy and has a little bit of a “halo” which works for this particular garment, but it’s something to know for future projects. I have not found it to shed at all, which I’m happy about. Below is a photo of my progress a couple days ago (right after I divided for the sleeves). The best thing about knitting with super bulky yarn is that it knits up so quickly…unless of course you’re like me and need to stop every other stitch to pet the yarn and indulge in its softness! I’m hoping to be done in a couple weeks (it really is that fast). I’m sure deciding on buttons will be a challenge!

superbulkygrandpa

2. Pure Joy Shawl by Joji Locatelli – I don’t really know much about Joji but I guess we have similar taste in style, because it just so happened that two of my #makenine2018 pieces are by the same designer! I also already have yarn for this shawl. I bought two skeins of yarn at the New York State Sheep and Wool Festival (NYSSW) over the summer from Miss Babs Hand-Dyed Yarn (guess I also have a thing for brands that start with honorifics). I don’t actually have the skeins in front of me, but I believe they are the Keira yarn in the colorways Garden Party Babette and Hops. I’ll do the green colorway for the skinny stripes and the large panel at the bottom, and then Garden Party (the multi-colored one) will be for the fat stripes. I went to NYSSW looking for exactly this color combo, which reminds me of a field of spring flowers, and I’m so excited to work on it after I finish my cardigan! Below is the yarn – which comes in GIANT skeins by the way (560 yds), so I only needed one skein of each. I’ve yet to complete a shawl I was really satisfied with (I’ve only done two) but I have a good feeling about this one!

Screen Shot 2018-01-31 at 11.14.02 AM

3. Love ALL Ways Cowl by Megan Williams – This was a special discovery from NYSWW. During the festival, the author of this pattern, Megan, and her co-author Cory Eichelberger, actually came to my local yarn shop, Perfect Blend, and discussed the patterns in their book Minnesota 52: 16 Knits Inspired by the Road with a small group of fiber folk – and they signed copies for us! I was so enamored with the two of them and their discussion of each of the patterns in the book. I loved that the genesis of each pattern had a little story of friendship and fiber behind it. The poem at the end could bring me to tears – it really captures the special qualities of this handicraft and the friendships it builds. BUT! The really cool thing about this cowl, and the reason I absolutely had to include in my #makenine2018, is that it’s not just a cowl! It can also be worn as a hat! Check out the photo below to see it in hat form. All you do (I think) is just twist the cowl in the middle and then fold over the top half, and voila! It’s a hat! I already ordered the yarn for this but haven’t yet received it. Once I get it and know for sure that I’ll be using it for this, I’ll share all the deets – the colors aren’t that different from the one in the pattern photos, if maybe a little less Easter-y.

loveallways

(photo courtesy of Megan’s pattern page on Ravelry)

Okay, that is the first third of my “plan” for #MakeNine2018. I cannot wait to tell you what I have in store for the second third. I actually just received a skein of yarn that I’ll be using for #5 and I wish I could fast forward to that project now! Hopefully, being able to see what’s coming up next will keep me motivated to stick with the program.

What are you making for #MakeNine2018 or do you also find that making plans can be a little too constricting?

Thanks for stopping by 🙂

 

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