Something I am always asked is how do I find so much time to knit. I wish I could say I balance my time really well but that would be lies! Knitting is not only my job but pretty much my only hobby and a key step in my having anything to wear so if I’m not working, I’m knitting. However I have been thinking about how people might get more knitting done.
Before I make a list though, I have to say, that while I love a good inspirational quote as much as the next person, phrases like ‘We all have the same 24 hours in the day’ aggravate me (the oddest things aggravate me) because while time passes the same for everyone, everyone has different commitments, priorities etc so I promise this isn’t ‘get up an hour earlier’ or ‘set up routine time for knitting everyday’ because if that worked, we’d all be knitting every morning at 4am!
So here’s my ideas about how to get more knitting done rather than a ‘Use your time more effectively!’ lecture ; )
1. Always be ready to knit
I’m not sure I want to admit to how many half knitted socks there are usually lurking around my house. However, there is a method to this daftness … I come to part of pattern I don’t want to concentrate on, pick up a sock. I finish one project, pick up a sock. I am too tired for something complicated, pick up a sock. Always have a project that a) you love, b) is simple, c) can be picked up and put down at a minutes notice and, if possible, d) portable!
Just don't steal the needle out of your ready to go project!
2. Knit everywhere that you can
The places where you can knit aren’t the same for everyone of course but work out where the places are for you! I knit everywhere … right up to the point of rudeness (which varies depending on who I am with! ; )). Also it’s a great way to fend off other things, particularly where you could get ‘a job’ (you know those occasions). A friend of mine, her son started swimming quite seriously and she would sit about, without anything to do… now she has been roped into timing races. Knitting could have saved her. (To be fair, I think she loves doing it and isn’t a knitter but don't risk it!).
3. Knit only things you really love
I think this is really important. I often find myself knitting things I don’t really like, dragging my heels, only knitting bits of it now and again … I recommend not doing this. If you really like something you will want to finish it so much that you will just keep on knitting it. A real case of ‘just one more row’ and we all know that leads to sitting up all night knitting.
I didn't want this to end though ... it should have been finished half a skein ago
4. Go straight into the hard bits
Many, if not all, patterns have a bit everyone doesn’t like or at least likes less than the other bits. Be it ‘split for the neck’ (usually my downfall), ‘turn heel’ or ‘knit 25 inches in stocking stitch’ (I love this bit!), don’t pause when you come to it, go straight in. Get it done and move on to the bit you want to do as quickly as possible. Mark Twain said ‘Eat a Live Frog Every Morning, and Nothing Worse Will Happen to You the Rest of the Day’ … so get the big frogs over and done with! I wish he’d used a different creature though … no knitter wants to frog in the morning.
5. Always know where you are
Linking back to 1, as well as always being ready to knit, always know where you are. Mark it on the pattern, keep a project tracker, make notes, whatever helps you know where you are in the knit … how many times have any of us gone back to a pattern and spent ages trying to work out if it was line 6 or line 10 of the complicated cable pattern?
I've created a very simple downloadable project tracker. Click here to download the PDF. If this link isn't working or you'd like to store it in your TLYC account, you can add it to your cart here (still free!).
6. Know where everything is
I spent about 2 hours recently searching the house for a 2.75mm 40cm needle before just giving up and buying one … only to find the one I wanted the following day. How much time did I waste faffing about?! Organise your knitting stuff my lovelies. I’d recommend something but I’ve only managed ‘get everything into a single drawer’ so far.
I'm not convinced everything is in here ...
1 to 6 will help your Knit Readiness. I’m adding the two below for folk who love a list and/or a deadline.
7. Ravelry Up!
I love Ravelry, it’s like my accountability tool … well, sometimes – you’ll see I’m pretty out of date at the moment! A knit-a-long is great, particularly for the competitive. There are lots of ways to use Ravelry and each will work differently for you. Planned projects with end dates, setting up all of your yarns and then getting to use them up as you knit. Think about what motivates you and go for it. However beware the Ravelry rabbit hole … because 6 hours of pattern browsing isn’t the most productive knitting time ; )
8. Commit to a deadline
Test knitting and sample knitting .. honestly I am never as reliable as when I am knitting a sample for someone else that they really need! Approach this with caution though because what for you is a knitting project can often be something very necessary for someone else … and it can take the enjoyment out of knitting if it gets pressured so definitely one to be wary of.
And that’s it. No judgement here on how you spend your days but at least with these tips, when a space opens up, you’ll be ready to knit!!
Now, the sample for my next free pattern is not going to knit itself! ; )
Fancy a little more rambling? Check out The Loveliest Yarn Company YouTube channel.