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earthcore
Chatty Knitter

USA
139 Posts

Posted - 03/17/2003 :  6:39:15 PM  Show Profile Send earthcore a Private Message
Ordinarily, I'm a very task-oriented person. I derive great pleasure from a job well done. But lately I find myself beginning new project after new project without finishing much of anything.
Over the weekend, I spent hours working on a sweater for a toddler, even through I don't have a toddler-sized recipient in mind. And I knew going into the project that I wouldn't have enough yarn to complete it.

This afternoon, I abandoned the toddler sweater and returned to another WIP. I realized that sometimes I get more out of starting a project than finishing it. I love planning and dreaming about future projects. It seems like starting a new project can get that little planning bug out of my system so that I can move on to a project already in progress.

Anyone else experience this?

achrisvet
Permanent Resident

USA
5986 Posts

Posted - 03/17/2003 :  7:20:59 PM  Show Profile Send achrisvet a Private Message
It's only with sheer force of will that I keep from starting a couple projects a week. I get great joy from finishing a thing, but all the while I'm working on it I'm thinking of another thing to start.

I did abandon a chenille throw I started as a gift for my sister. It was a beautiful light blue chenille on a cone that I got on Ebay. Never again. The yarn twits into tight cooils so that I have to dangle the project to let it unspin every row. I hate it with a passion. I intend to sell the yarn on Ebay along with all the other chenille I foolishly bought before I knew better.

I read some advice somewere to the effect of: Never work on something you hate.

Anita

See my completed projects!
http://www.picturetrail.com/gallery/view?p=999&gid=977585&uid=619962&members=1
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Helen
Chatty Knitter

USA
103 Posts

Posted - 03/17/2003 :  9:00:14 PM  Show Profile Send Helen a Private Message
I have lost count of the number of projects I have in progress. I love strings and what you can do with them. I swear yarn talks to me. I get some yarn and then I get an idea of what it wants to be made into. Next thing you know I am designing the new project and getting it started. I get it about 1/2 finished and then another yarn begs for my attention. Off I go again on a new project. I think it was about a year ago when I finished my last project! I am going to be moving soon and I have started to go through my pattern books and mags to weed out what I won't use. It has been like cutting my hands off. I have had some of these mags since the late 60's and have moved them all over the country. Of course, new ideas came to me as I went through them.
I have just got to get some of these projects finished!
Helen

I love strings
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BessH
Permanent Resident

3095 Posts

Posted - 03/18/2003 :  03:05:15 AM  Show Profile  Visit BessH's Homepage Send BessH a Private Message
Quit a project when you want to. The trick is knowing if you really want to.



Bess
http://likethequeen.blogspot.com
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CatherineM
Permanent Resident

USA
3363 Posts

Posted - 03/18/2003 :  05:58:28 AM  Show Profile  Visit CatherineM's Homepage Send CatherineM a Private Message
I'm a ruthless frogger. My attitude is I knit for pleasure, so if it isn't giving me pleasure I don't waste my time on it. If I'm really enjoying a project, or just can't wait to see it finished so I can use it, I'll work right through and get it done fast. If I find myself setting it aside, I start to re-think my purpose in making it at all. I'll let it sit a while, and eventually I'll go back and take another look at it, and either the spark will come back and I finish it, or I just frog it and forget it. I don't have too many unfinished projects sitting around, and the ones that are in progress will all be completed in time. Sometimes a nice frogging party is very liberating!

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jamknit
Warming Up

USA
96 Posts

Posted - 03/18/2003 :  09:02:50 AM  Show Profile Send jamknit a Private Message
I always find myself pooping out on sweaters just before I finish the last sleeve. It starts to get a little boring, so I'm anxious to move on to my next project. The way I motivate myself to finish is by limiting my WIPs to a max of five ( the amount that still manages to look decorative in my living room rather that overwhelming). This way I have to finish something before I start a new project. If I'm really bored, I'll work a set number of rows on the project each day. Right now the thing I'm dreading finishing is the Kitt jacket from the Mission Falls East and West booklet. It's a beautiful sweater, and you would think being able to wear it would be motivation enough, but after doing the pattern on the back, two fronts, and one sleeve it seems tedious. So for the past five nights I have promised myself to knit one pattern repeat, and tonight I will finish it.

Hooray.

Of course if I really hate something I have no qualms about quitting entirely, and if I hate the yarn (and it didn't cost a fortune), I'll even throw it away.

Wendy
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fmarrs
Guardian angel

USA
9776 Posts

Posted - 03/18/2003 :  2:11:43 PM  Show Profile Send fmarrs a Private Message
I satisfy my creative urges by planning projects. I will figure out and write out the entire directions and spend a lot of time knitting swatches and drawing diagrams. All this with full knowledge that I will never begin the project. A particular yarn I just have to have and I limit myself to one skein. Enough for the swatching and diagraming. I do finish items but they tend to be things that my family members request rather than what I want to play with. I have three types of knitting projects on hand at all times: those my family wants, mindless knitting for the "bad" times when I am too uncomfortable to concentrate, and the projects I want to do.

fran

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Phaedra28
Gabber Extraordinaire

485 Posts

Posted - 03/24/2003 :  2:40:43 PM  Show Profile Send Phaedra28 a Private Message
I like to finish a project, but if it goes on for too long, I'll give up. My most recent total abandonment was a beaded, cabled vest I started about 1986!!! I just took the dang thing, a couple of balls of the yarn used, and some of the beads to my LYS and handed it over to a young woman there who liked it. She can finish it, and wear it. Aside from everything else, I'm about six inches larger now than I was then, so giving it away saved it from the rag pile, and from spending another twenty years in a box somewhere.

I usually only have two or three projects going at once: a Major Project, like a jumper; a sock; and sometimes a Really Major Project. The Current Really Major Project is an entrelac jumper, on size 7US needles, in a very light, springy yarn. The current Major is not yet started, and the sock is coming along fine. I'm swatching for the Next Major -- that is, the one after the one I'm about to start.

I guess my answer is: abandon a project when it no longer fits your needs. I've got another in a box (Cursed Love Sweater), and who knows: maybe it'll go to another devotee of my LYS. Maybe I'll pull it out and start something else. Maybe I'll let it stay there for a while longer...

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happy knitter
New Pal

18 Posts

Posted - 04/02/2003 :  11:22:57 AM  Show Profile Send happy knitter a Private Message
I have developed a new system to keep my WIPs to a minimum. I can only have 3 current projects: something for myself; something to give away (with a deadline, like a birthday); an easy emergency project in case I come to a stand-still with the others. I can buy yarn (for myself) in advance, but I am trying to keep my "give away" project yarn stash to a minimum. That way, if I see a "must have" yarn I can buy it and use it for a future "me" project, but when I am starting a new project for someone else, I can buy something new.
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Kristin
Seriously Hooked

USA
606 Posts

Posted - 04/02/2003 :  12:00:59 PM  Show Profile Send Kristin a Private Message
I don't "abandon" my projects...LOL...they gently "age" in my knitting trunk

Seriously, though, it's OK to stop a project when you just can't stand it and the thought of knitting it makes you want to scream. Sometimes, just a little break to work on something else will get you back into the mood to work on it again. If, however, you can't take it anymore, why not just frog it and use it on something else? I find if I put my reused yarn back into the stash, I'll find it later and say "oh yeah, I can make something with this" and become a different project.

So, don't beat yourself up. Sometimes something that looks fabulous in a knitting book just doesn't "do" it for you, creatively speaking. I justify my starts & stops by telling myself I know I'll at least re-use the yarn on some other project.



--Kristin

"A little nonsense now & then is relished by the wisest men." --Roald Dahl
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GFTC
Permanent Resident

USA
6331 Posts

Posted - 10/02/2003 :  07:20:29 AM  Show Profile  Visit GFTC's Homepage Send GFTC a Private Message
I found this thread about completion and it seems related to many of the current discussions we have all been having.
Several years ago I began a fair isle sweater from an Annabel Fox book. It was made with a number of colors of Rowan DK and I finished about 1/2 of the front. It was beautiful but as I knit I realized that nobody was going to wear it - it just wasn't a style for anyone in my family. I stopped working on it for maybe 3 years and then came across it in a closet. I frogged most of the work but kept a decent section just as a souvenir of the work and pattern. I then used all these different color yarns to make an afghan, having to fill in another color or 2 plus a color for the edging. I'm very happy now with the whole thing although I still need to sew it all together. That is on the list for the November finishing deadline.



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vicky by the bay
Permanent Resident

USA
4768 Posts

Posted - 10/02/2003 :  07:30:52 AM  Show Profile Send vicky by the bay a Private Message
GFTC, Thank you...Thank you...Thank you for finding this thread. I now don't feel like such a weirdo!!! I actually thought there was something wrong w/ me! I love starting projects....I have multitudes of started projects. I set aside them all yesterday and decided I have to get my Christmas presents going...now these I will finish. I've already finished 4 hat and scarf sets. I started an Irish Seed Stitch Pullover for Mike for Christmas. It's beautiful. I knit until 1:00 am this morning. He sat right in front of me while I knit. Told me how nice it was. Won't he be surprised when he opens his gift Christmas Eve!!!!

Vicky (Queen O'Yarn archivist-QYA)
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klfrazier
Permanent Resident

1745 Posts

Posted - 10/02/2003 :  08:05:32 AM  Show Profile  Visit klfrazier's Homepage Send klfrazier a Private Message
I think it's ok to put a project down when:

1. The reason for making the item is gone. (Wedding gift, and wedding is called off. Find out recipient doesn't really want another hat. etc.)
2. You have put it aside for a break and find that you just can't stand to pick it up again. (It is imparative that I take a break first, though, so that I can figure out if it's really the WIP or if I just need some variety.)
3. You discover a fatal flaw with the pattern and decide a different project would work better.
4. You realize, in a fit of honesty, that you hate the color/style/whatever, and that's why you feel ill every time you work on it!

Kristin

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Marg in Mirror
Permanent Resident

Canada
3205 Posts

Posted - 10/02/2003 :  1:57:54 PM  Show Profile  Visit Marg in Mirror's Homepage  Send Marg in Mirror a Yahoo! Message Send Marg in Mirror a Private Message
I very recently did the same thing with 2 items -- an aran afghan knit all at once (too big, even on circs, to get my mind around), and a three-colour jacket that's now out of style. I am using the aran yarn (it's a Mary Maxim sayelle, really) to make afghan blocks, which are much more manageable, and which I'll donate to Keep Canada Warm, and I am going to turn the jacket (red, grey and white) into another jacket -- this time, from the book "Jackets". It's a Chanel waiting to happen!

-- Marg in Calgary

TLWKOTB

P.S. There was a time when I never would have done this. It was all or nothing, and keep it forever unfinished. I think I've come a long way!

http://knitsonthebus.blogspot.com
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srakow@pacbell.net


Posts

Posted - 10/02/2003 :  3:26:10 PM  Show Profile Send srakow@pacbell.net a Private Message
quote:

Ordinarily, I'm a very task-oriented person. I derive great pleasure from a job well done. But lately I find myself beginning new project after new project without finishing much of anything.
Over the weekend, I spent hours working on a sweater for a toddler, even through I don't have a toddler-sized recipient in mind. And I knew going into the project that I wouldn't have enough yarn to complete it.

This afternoon, I abandoned the toddler sweater and returned to another WIP. I realized that sometimes I get more out of starting a project than finishing it. I love planning and dreaming about future projects. It seems like starting a new project can get that little planning bug out of my system so that I can move on to a project already in progress.

Anyone else experience this?



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srakow@pacbell.net


Posts

Posted - 10/02/2003 :  3:33:29 PM  Show Profile Send srakow@pacbell.net a Private Message
Being a somewhat solitary knitter, I never knew other people did this. I am so excited to start a new project that I work on it until my curiosity is satisfied, then I lose interest and have no desire to go back and finish. Finishing things is my Achilles heel. Usually, if I pick up the project again, I undo it and start a different use of the yarn. I also have a habit of only reading knitting books. I enjoy the complicated directions and the beautiful result but never have the need to make it myself. Knitting as art... Anyone else have this habit?
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DebiL
New Pal

5 Posts

Posted - 10/02/2003 :  4:29:11 PM  Show Profile Send DebiL a Private Message
When I find myself frustrated or not enjoying my knitting I will give it an honest attempt over a few days and if that still doesnt work, I frog the project and back into stash it goes....Maybe I will try the original project again at a later time, hoping that my *mindset* has changed or maybe the yarn will tell me that it would rather be something else. If I'm still unhappy with the yarn/project, out it goes to charity...we all have occasional lapses in good judgement, n'est ce pas? Why didn't I knit that big shouldered, angora and rhinestone sweater in 1980 where it belonged? And WHY is it still HERE?????

As far as works in progress, I must confess that even reading my fellow knit sib's tales of "too many UFO's/WIP's to count" makes the hair on the back of my neck stand up ::shudder:: I only have 2 projects at any given time, on rare occasions, 3 if I need a gift or a special project and need to put my 2 *standard* projects aside. The two usually are a pair of socks (portable) and a sweater or felted bag (home knitting). I actually get "nervous" when I have more than 2 projects "hanging over my head"! But then, I am a Virgo, I can't help myself I don't even have yarn in my stash that isn't earmarked for a specific project...I do like making future plans tho, and I have a pretty good stash to prove it! (altho, I have seen and heard of some stashes that make me wanna reach for a Prozac!!)

Great Thread!! Thanks!

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christine@christineharris.com


Posts

Posted - 10/02/2003 :  5:21:58 PM  Show Profile Send christine@christineharris.com a Private Message
I rarely abandon a project. I always tell myself that my reward for finishing a tedious job is that I can soon begin another, more interesting garment. If I make something that doesn't suit me, I donate it to a charity. They are always pleased to get warm woollies for winter. As far as running out of wool for a child's jumper - when this happens to me, I unpick each piece to the beginning of the armholes, then join in another colour for the top/shoulders. It looks good if you zig-zag the colour line - ie, one stitch in bottom colour, then one in the new colour. It blends them better.
Christine H
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marfa
Permanent Resident

USA
2043 Posts

Posted - 10/02/2003 :  6:53:28 PM  Show Profile  Visit marfa's Homepage Send marfa a Private Message
How do.
Earthcore, great topic!
As a long time quilter & a knitter of less than 2 years, it's good to get the skinny on this topic from you all.
A couple of years ago I made a pledge to myself to finish all the quilts I had started before I began any others & I did complete all of them - it felt great. That's a lesson I am trying to repeat w/knitting.
If I have begun a project (this works well for scarves) & the yarn has been a painful one to my hands, I try different needles or techniques. If those things don't help, I give the yarn away.
So far I have finished all the projects that I have begun. We'll see how long that continues.
Re WIPs, I try to have less than 5. Ditto re how long that continues.
Martha

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SerMom
Permanent Resident

Canada
6412 Posts

Posted - 10/02/2003 :  7:37:21 PM  Show Profile Send SerMom a Private Message
Since this is supposed to be a hobby and relaxing, it seems to me that the time to stop is when it's no longer fun or relaxing.

We all have chore that we hate but that must be done. Why add knitting to that list?

Barbara

"I know we've got one SOMEWHERE"
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klfrazier
Permanent Resident

1745 Posts

Posted - 10/02/2003 :  8:09:07 PM  Show Profile  Visit klfrazier's Homepage Send klfrazier a Private Message
Amen Barbara! I think I'm going to contact the folks I was doing a tatting roundrobin with and send my stuff back. I've had two of the rounds for over two years, and I'm not the only one holding onto things. I no longer care or like the project and I'm sick of fussing with it.

My DH asked me yesterday if my knitting was just a phase, and I was able to say that it isn't. There are just so many possibilities!

Kristin

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