I read, on many of the lovely blogs I visit often, of other knitters managing to make lots of stuff in a year. Hats galore, socks galore, scarves, small garments, not-so-small garments – the list is endless and I feel utterly defeated because I not only don’t produce at those sorts of rates but, it seems, can’t.
I’ve never been a fast knitter. Coming from a family of women who were fast knitters, I’ve sort of accepted that some of my lack of speed could well relate to my odd knitting style. I’m a thrower rather than a picker – and I tried that but it was even slower for me – but not in the index-finger style that I was taught and which, as anyone who has ever watched Hazel Tindall knows, is every bit as fast as picking; I simply couldn’t master it. I use my middle finger to throw the yarn. It works for me and I’ve seen others do it, so it’s not as if I’m anything special; just slow. I suspect, however, that time constraints are part of why I’m slow to finish things. My actual knitting speed is probably reasonable, but I get too many interruptions. Of course I could stay up all night but I’m getting too old to find that advisable when I need to be at work the next day.
Also, I find that I can’t knit and do anything else, even with plain work. I make mistakes, I drop stitches, I end up with a mess. Perhaps my best progress is made when I’m all alone down in the sewing room and only come out when called for meals. Last year I made five or six beanies, finished a half-made balaclava and made another, as well a few scarves and a couple of dishcloths. Did I finish the socks I started the year before? No. I made fingerless mitts and a pair of small mittens but didn’t finish the larger mittens I’d hoped to do for a niece who lives somewhere cold. Yes, she might get them this winter. They won’t go to waste, they won’t eat anything and if I take them out of the bag where I stashed them when the sewing room had to be turned temporarily into a spare bedroom, then I might even get them finished soon.
Then again, this is summer. It’s too hot to knit for very long, and it’s almost back-to-school and therefore back-to-rowing time. My Saturdays are accounted for and Sundays are put to good use catching up on housework. When am I meant to find time to knit? I do neglect the housework. Dr B cooks and shops so I’m off the hook with a big part of domestica but the rest of the gig seems to be mine: laundry and cleaning and all the little mending jobs and magic tricks with making things and being the first-aider and – you name it. I think it’s called being Mum.
What do you do to find time to knit? I’m open to suggestions!