2013: My knitting year in review

2013: One knitter's year in review

For as anal-retentive and “organized” as I am, I’m not a very good record keeper when it comes to my knitting. Most Finished Objects make it onto the blog. Many appear in other forms on Instagram. Some things make it onto Ravelry. But I feel like there are still some things that never even get snapshotted. So I’ve been wanting to take stock of my 2013 knitting, and now that I’ve pulled these images together — organized as chronologically as I can reconstruct it — I’m kind of amazed. While I didn’t sew or crochet or weave a single thing this year, I knitted more than I realized. As much as I kick myself for the two unfinished sweaters in my basket, the three finished ones have become such wardrobe staples I forget they’re from this year. And I feel good about the fact that those two sweaters are my only UFOs right now, rather than the mess of unworthy WIPs I’ve let pile up in the past. There’s even some color!

But the thing that really stands out about this year is that I gave myself the opportunity to make a lot of more advanced mistakes. And from making and analyzing and fixing those mistakes, I’ve become an infinitely more capable knitter. So while there have been successes and failures, project-wise, this year has been a big, big win for me.

ROW ONE
left: My chunky Walpole, begun last year and finished in January. I’ve decided open-front cardigans are not for me, but this still gets a lot of wear around the house.
middle: This State Street Cowl is among my favorites — an extremely fun and rewarding knit, and I love having it around my neck.
right: Dubbed the Almost Perfect Pullover, and although I wear it a lot, I chastise myself every time for the neck. Never again will I do a sweater with no neck shaping, and always will I pick up stitches (for some structure) rather than knitting it in one piece.

ROW TWO
left: Wabi Mitts — I couldn’t be more proud of this pattern.
middle: Did I never blog about this one? I whipped out this Bulky Hat (pattern mentioned here) one evening while drinking and chatting at a crafty social gathering — that’s a fun, quick, simple knit.
right: Acer, sigh. Cast on at the end of February and I really hope to finish it before the year mark rolls around.

ROW THREE
left: The sample sweater from my top-down sweater tutorial. Talk about rewarding: I don’t even have words for what it’s been like, seeing all the sweaters that have resulted from that tutorial.
middle: My first Orlane’s Textured Shawl. I love this shawl — even/especially the kerchief-y size of it — but wish it wasn’t ivory. I always feel like I have a bath towel around my neck.
right: see below

ROW FOUR
left and right: Along with the hat above, my little pattern collection: Stadium Hat, Stadium Mitts and Whichaway Mitts. Love all of these.
middle: My Heel Stitch Hat was both a hit and a miss. It got big when blocked, so I wound up felting it down a little, and now it looks like I sewed it out of a funky old orange bath mat. But I’ve taken to wearing it at night, pulled down over my eyes! So it’s my pal, even if it’s not much to look at anymore.

ROW FIVE
left: My first sock, so I love it, and I had a lot of fun knitting it. But I hate the yarn so much I never made it a mate.
middle and right: Bob’s skullcaps. These make me feel all warm and fuzzy every time he wears either of them.

ROW SIX
left: My bigger, chunkier Orlane. Love it.
middle: Oh, Slade. Realizing I had yarn from two dye lots took the wind out of my sails a little bit, even if I still can’t see what the camera saw. But I’m picking this back up in the new year, don’t worry.
right: My first colorwork, these Muckle Mitts were definitely a major high point.

ROW SEVEN
left to right: With the mania of the past several weeks, I took refuge in hats, from the Simple Rib Hat to the pair of Hill Country Hats to, finally, the absolute highlight of my year, my beautiful Gentian. Such a perfect final knit of the year. Although I think that yarn may have ruined me for anything else.

So that’s my year in a nutshell. Thank you to every single one of you for reading, linking, pinning, and especially commenting over the past year. It’s been an honor to have your company, and I’m looking forward to finding out what 2014 holds for us all. Have a fabulous New Year’s Eve!

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11 thoughts on “2013: My knitting year in review

  1. Love your 2013 retrospective, Karen. I am the same–I post some finished projects to Ravelry and others, many that I love, just vanish!
    I also knit Clara’s Stepping Stones socks, and I plan on another pair in the medium weight Blue Moon. I knit my first pair in the suggested yarn Malabrigo Rios. For a pair of socks–NEVER again!! My boyfriend put them on Christmas morning in the house and wore them on our daily walk. By evening, they were tremendously stretched out and covered in pills. He still loves them; I am disgusted! Also, tremendous color variation from sock to sock. I refuse to alternate skeins on socks.

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  2. These are a triumph! Beautiful work.

    For 2014, I’m trying to post to Ravelry more mindfully. I’m such an avid consumer of other’s FOs that it only feels right to start adding my own, especially if I’m making pattern mods or alterations that might help the hive mind.

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  3. i have enjoyed your blog more than anything ive subscribed to- at all ever
    i look forward to it every day and it inspires me
    i would love you to host a kal so i can try a a pattern along with you

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  4. Great job! You had a very productive year! I never take pictures of my finished projects…probably related to the fact that I never let anyone take pictures of me. Happy New Year, Karen. I am looking forward to what you bring us in 2014!

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  5. Yes! As Susan said, I’ve read and enjoyed this blog more than any I subscribe to. All these projects of yours, Karen, and the descriptions of your process have been so inspiring. I’ve learned so much! I made my first (and second) kerchiefs this year- that was huge to finally wrap my mind around the basic construction of shawls. I made my first lace hat – which means I (finally) succeeded in following a complex pattern. And that led me to make other complex patterned hats. All of it because of this blog. Thank you more than I can say. (I could go on about your shop offerings, too… :)
    Last night I came home to find a bag of yarn in the mail in luscious colors. What a way to end the year! The possibilities for 2014 loom bright. Happy New Year, Everyone!

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  6. A very impressive showing for the year! Your projects and blog are so inspiring – I’m planning on knitting my own Gentian hat in January with a beautiful milky-grey Malabrigo, which will hopefully show off the cables as much as the Purl yarn!

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  7. I also do not post everything. Gifts, for instance, have a way of missing that boat. Oh well.

    Love your blog and look forward to more. I wish all a happy, healthy, productive 2014!

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  8. Pingback: A Look Back at the 2013′s Knitting | Lovely Wren

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