Saturday, August 21, 2010

What's On Your Needles? An Apron?

It's been a busy few weeks for me. Between flying 4 days a week, getting flooring quotes, working at the shop and knitting up a storm...sorry, no time for blogging. What I do have is a renewed obsession for knitting and I blame it on Janet!

Here's what has happened during the past few weeks. Janet and I decided to try some competitive knitting, we drummed up the First Annual Knitwits Knitting Competition with the Apron Knitting Contest. We were trying to come up with a way to move some inventory of the Aslan Trends Glaciar Del Cielo and a stack of Interweave Magazines and have some fun in the process. We fell in love with the idea of knitting aprons and the possibility of putting our creative energy to good use. I knew Janet's entry would be wacky, fun and totally unexpected (if she finished it) and I knew I could alter the pattern (as I always do) and perhaps finish something too.

Janet immediately started knitting away on her apron with enthusiasm I hadn't seen before. I started to get a little nervous, so I too stepped up game. I knitted the apron band and started knitting the apron portion. I then started scouring Ravelry for inspiration, ideas and a "theme". In the process, I found countless patterns and ideas for everything except my apron. I joined five Ravelry groups, added dozens of favorites, put at least 20 things to my cue, and started six new projects--a felted log cabin potholder, Jared Flood's Turn a Square Hat, Maine Morning Mitts, a striped mouse, the Knitwits 2011 Afghan project and a one skein lacy cowl called Pretty Thing.

I finished the felted log cabin potholder and plan to kit up the yarn and do a one day workshop for the 12 Gifts of Christmas program. I finished the Turn a Square Hat just in time for week #3 of the 12 Gifts of Christmas. I have most of one of the Maine Morning Mitts done (it's still week #4, so I'm not late yet). The striped mouse-don't know why I started this but I did and I just need to seam it up, stuff it and sew on ears and face. I've knit 3-1/2 squares of the 2011 Afghan project using Barbara Walker's Learn to Knit Afghan Book- a great book that has taught this old dog many new tricks and techniques. The Pretty Thing is a great one skein, lacy knit in the round cowl that is the perfect pattern for Road to China Light. The apron portion of my apron is still on the needles.

The more I scour Ravelry for my winning apron "theme", the more inspired I get to knit ....everything except my apron! Thinking that disorganization was the reason for not nailing down my "theme", I ordered a Namaste Hermosa bag to keep all of my WIPs (works in progress) contained and organized. I'm hoping that the new bag will also contain the answer to my missing "theme".

Several other contenders have joined in the fun and highly competitive Apron knitting competition. Entries are starting to show up in varies stages of progress and completion. From what I've seen and heard, I really need come up with something great and nail down my "theme". The pressure is getting too great to bear!

To make matters worse, Phil the UPS man and judge of the competition keeps coming in everyday asking for status updates on the competition. I've been talking "BIG" but I've got nothing but a bunch of finished Gifts of Christmas projects, and an unfinished striped mouse.

While my missing "theme" is frustrating, the fun factor of the competition has been very rewarding. Everyone seems to be having fun coming up with ideas and ways to execute them. I am really enjoying the resuscitation of the creative knitting energy and enthusiasm at the shop. Since the competition started, Janet and I have never knit so much!

Our plan to move Glacial Del Cielo, Interweave Knits Magazines and have fun has been a great success! So much so that we've had to reorder the yarn and magazines. As for the fun...the fun is just beginning! I think the evening at Janet's house for the judging and Soups and Sauces demonstration will be an event not to be missed! If you haven't yet started to knit an apron, it's not too late!

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