I’ve been thinking about something for nearly a year, since I started working on my first knitting pattern that was published last month. I want to design patterns. Not as a living but as a challenge for my brain. As we get older I feel it’s necessary keep our brains stimulated and engaged. Thinking through and figuring things out is a great thing for us in the over 50 age range. Probably good for anyone, really.
Even when I get frustrated knitting certain items and attempting new techniques, I eventually realize that I’ve learned from that frustration – every single time. I learn something to carry forward with me in what I want to knit or I may learn something that I don’t want to ever knit again. It’s all beneficial (tears occasionally included and part of the bargain).
I began knitting about 15 years ago. I started out knitting patterns exactly as they were written, no personal changes whatsoever. Then I started tweaking things a bit here and there. When I realized that I couldn’t always find what I wanted to knit I thought perhaps I could create some patterns for myself that I like. Then it dawned on me that I could publish my patterns and share them with others.
I want to make very clear that I do not diminish the importance of professional instructors and designers as that would be foolish and insulting. Designing, writing and teaching – that’s their livelihood. I do not aspire to be them for that is not my forte, but I do want to learn from them and create based on that knowledge and experience working with them or taking their classes. The cool thing is I’ve already learned so much from the best in the business, and I consider myself fortunate and seriously so darn lucky to have learned from them.
My knitting goals for 2017 are as follows:
1. Design 3 – 5 patterns (shawls and scarves) and publish them on Ravelry.
2. Host 3 KAL’s and one MKAL on Ravelry in my group, Seasonal Shawls.
3. Knit the Happenstance Shawl (I already have the yarn for it). At Stitches MidWest last year I took a class where I learned the history of Hap shawls and made a mini-shawl in class. It gives me absolute tingles when I think about knitting one and Happenstance is the one I want to do first.
4. Knit a very special baby blanket for my step-son and his wife as they are expecting their first baby. I ordered the yarn last night and it’s going to be warm, lush and downright beautiful.
5. Learn how to knit a sweater. I’ve knit 2 or 3 sweaters before, top down/raglan and some baby cardigans. But they’ve all been pretty easy, mostly stockinette, with ribbing and buttonholes. Not really a big deal. There was really nothing too complicated about them, no lace, nothing incorporating shaping with other stitches within that garment, etc. But I feel it’s important for me to really understand the mechanics in case at some point in my life I’ll actually want to knit one for myself, plus, with so many incredible stitches to choose from, who just wants a sweater with only stockinette stitch?? Unfortunately, right now I’m hot ALL the time so sweaters are not the first thing I think of what I want to knit something!
6. Design for me. By that I mean, I won’t worry about who may or may not knit up the patterns that I design and knit this year. If *I* like the design I come up with and I want to knit it, and I think it’s beautiful and challenging and feels RIGHT, then that’s what I should do. And that’s exactly what I’ll do and without feeling guilty.
So 2017, here I am. Ready to tackle new endeavors and looking forward to the challenges and rewards of doing just that.
Happy New Year!