Thursday, November 7, 2013

NaKniSweMo 2013

Some of you may be familiar with November being a NaNoWriMo where people sit down and try to write a 50,000 word novel during the month. Well a knitter wanted a sweater and decided to use the same concept to knitting.

I had heard of this phenomena, but November is usually smack dab in the middle of Christmas knitting. I've been handmaking Christmas gifts for years. This year, there may be fewer hand knit and maybe some sewn things as well as jams and preserves.

We have two nieces and six nephews, so they'll get the focus of the handknit stuff. Well except for Logan. We had gotten him a book (other kids got books too) and I found out that he's definitely the reader in the family. He has gone on to get the books in hardback and will go back and re-read from the beginning of the series to prepare for reading the latest book. So I'm going to pick him up a book or two for his gifts this year. I'll handmake him a bookmarker so he has something made by me.

I have a start on the Christmas gifts as you saw with Bailey's hat yesterday. I have a pair of fingerless mitts also planned for her. The rest of the boys I've run into stumbling blocks with. I think they are due for hats, but what ones?

Selfish knitting is usually planned for January for most knitters. I can't wait until then this year. I need to satisfy a need to have something that I'm making stay with me. So NaKniSweMo seemed like a perfect way to accomplish this goal. I have yarn stashed for several sweaters and cardigans but gift knitting always seemed to get in the way, or it was the wrong time of the year to be thinking about wearing a sweater. It's actually the perfect time to do it, so its ready when the weather is, but we won't go there right now. lol

I posted it to Facebook as kind of a way to put myself on the hook. I had at first planned to do Tempting. I have the yarn that I thought would work for it, more than enough I think too:
It's some Arucunia Wool that I had bought at The Knitting Bee several years ago during a Super Bowl sale with the thought of using it to make a Clapotis. In the knitting world it seems like everyone has made one, but me.  Oh I know there are a few hold outs still. ;-) I didn't jump right in and start making it, so the yarn has been at the bottom of the stash bin, pulled out a few times and put back.
I even did a gauge swatch for the pattern! I was a little tight with the yarn and then relaxed and got gauge. Yes, I know the swatch should have been bigger, but I wanted to get started!

So through chatting about the sweater on Facebook I also mentioned that I had been thinking about doing a new pattern I bought. The pattern is called Hitofude and was just a few US dollars. I had been looking at clothing through different online stores and noticed that this style of cardigan is very popular right now, so seemed like a perfect time to knit one. I'm also all about the layering. I have a tendency to run warm, weight not withstanding, so wearing the Tempting might be a little warmer than I would like.

Now, if we ran to colder winters, I'd be totally into making one. Our more temperate weather here in the Portland area means I need to worry more about getting wet than bundling up.

So I'll still make the Tempting, with the cable modification at the neckline, but after I do the Hitofude cardigan first.

I cast on and got start on November 1st and have been knitting on it every day. I have pics for the first four days:
I had some Knit Picks Gloss in Woodland Sage planned to make a Thermal. It's nice but I don't think I'd ever wear it.
Day one. You do provisional cast on in crochet chains. Then do the setup rows. I got the first two done before going to bed. Why was I doing it so late? I'd started playing Lord of the Rings Online with Brandon and we played until after 10pm, so I had to do all that so I wouldn't be behind.
Day two I have one chart repeat and two rows into the second done.
Day three there are three chart repeats done and I'm one chart repeat ahead of daily stitch count needed.

How do I know I'm ahead?  Well I sat down and tried to come up with a spreadsheet to track numbers of stitches each day done and whether or not I was ahead or behind and if I was on track for the goal. I then enlisted Brandon's help with getting all the bells and whistles done through Excell. He helped me with it and I was using it and on day two he tells me that I had a mistake and so he was re-doing the spreadsheet for me.

Yes, it helps to know how many days are in the month you are working with. I had given November 31 days, it only has 30 days. So he was able to take all of what I wanted and create the new spreadsheet with some better programming and formatting.

Because Ravelry keeps track of progress by percentage I had to request that addition to the spreadsheet. It unfortunately does it in increments of 5s, so I've been at 15% for a couple days. (You should see that by the project pic in the upper right hand corner of the blog.)

I'll try not to bore you with daily updates, unless you really want to see them?  Let me know. ;-) I have 15 chart repeats to do of the current setup. This makes the arms and the upper back of the cardigan. I don't want to get close to the end of the month and be racing to be done.

Its not too late to get started on a sweater/cardigan for the month. Want to join in on the fun? The Rav group is here. As mentioned there are prizes, its going to be done on a random number generator basis on finished projects. One lady has donated $75 gift certificate to WEBS and that's going to be a grand prize, yet to be determined how to win.

So am I totally selfish in wanting to knit something for myself? Or recharging my creative box by knitting for myself?


  1. Knitting for yourself is good! I'm all for it. I think your hitofude will be awesome, but I am very tempted by the Tempting! Ribbing is a wonderful thing. I may have to make one.

    For the record, I haven't made a Clapotis, either...

    1. Darn Blogger ate my reply. :-)

      Want to do a Tempting KAL in January? There's a cool cable mod for the neckline that I plan on doing. I still want to do a sweater out of big yarn. I was just sure that it wouldn't have enough stitches to make the 50,000 goal for this. :-)

      Clapotis could be a future KAL. Cindy has worn hers for several years and it looks very versatile - Fall through Spring.