Project-itis Relapse

symphony fireworks

Project-itis resolutions go pop in the night like fireworks over the symphony in the park recently.

It’s easy to make resolutions. It’s even easier to break them. I may or may not have lasted 24 hours with my declaration to have a moratorium on all projects. It’s a project-itis relapse already.

It started with the textile illustration. This was justified in the following manner: it’ll only take an hour. And it did. But it was a gateway drug. This led to sewing a tote, including making the fake leather handles (!) from scratch. Oops.

Well, maybe sewing projects weren’t included in the moratorium on all new projects. Right?

Feeling virtuous, I took up one of my many WIPs that’s on my summer knitting project list. Yes, I have a list – it makes me feel organized. Or OCD. Whatever. That’s when I encountered a raft of issues with my project, and guess what? I needed to start over. Does that count as a new project? I’d like to think not. Just part of continuing work on an existing project. The project can take multiple forms, I tell myself. No problem.

So I’ve restarted the project and told myself no more sewing for now. I hope that this lapse is over!

x Rena

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Textile Illustration

‘Love Me’ (2013). Woman in a summer dress.

Lately, I’ve become obsessed with freehand embroidery illustration and textile art. Naturally, me being me, I thought to give it a go myself. I didn’t draw anything out before hand – I went straight to sketching with needle and thread. I used grey felt as my base, cotton and silk thread and cotton fabric scraps for the dress, all of which I had in my sewing stash. I think I like the way it turned out! The final work measures approximately 8″ x 10″.

x Rena

Project-itis

Project-itis: when there is a wall of projects higher than you can shake a stick at, and yet you want to start more projects.

Project-itis: when there is a wall of projects higher than you can shake a stick at, and yet you want to start more projects.

I have the -itis. Project-itis, that is. It’s a knitter’s affliction where you have way too many works-in-progress (WIPs). I’m not sure what a respectable number is – two, perhaps three. I bet you, though, it’s not 10. Or more. Which is probably what I have going on.

In self defense, or in an attempt to justify the quantity of existing projects, I will say it’s because they’re in various stages of design. Not because I’m a project addict, of course. They’re not all huge projects. After all, there is only so much budget for yarn. Although there is an awful lot of stash yarn available for smaller projects. There’s also enough yarn to make at least 3 sweaters. I should probably list left over project yarn, unused skeins, for sale on Ravelry or somewhere, but that’s probably a post for another time.

I’m not sure where the -itis comes from. A flurry of ideas, for sure, and an impatience to see them come to light. But there are only so many knitting hours in a day and they can linger in various stages of completion for a long, long time. Like knitting purgatory. I like to have different projects in different gauges to help mix it up for my wrists. That’s another justification.

And then another key symptom of the -itis is the nearly unstoppable desire to start more projects. No, I tell myself firmly. Again and again. It’s working, barely. For now. I tell myself that there’s at least two sweaters in the works that need finishing, and a myriad array of smaller projects.

I’m having a flare-up of the -itis because I just finished a sweater. Oh boy, I think gleefully, I can start something else! Damn you, -itis. You’ve got me again. No.

So I am trying to steel my resolve and focus on completing something. I admit I did have a bit of a slip up the other day and started a hat. I couldn’t help it. It was just little, after all, and it would only take a couple of days to complete, right? What’s the harm in that?

I might have a problem.

Do you suffer from project-itis? Or do you exercise more self-discipline than I do?

x Rena

Unknitting

IMG_1256

Yesterday I spent waaaay more time unknitting than knitting, which served as a reminder that in designing, sometimes you need to go backward in order to go forward. Even so, I was amazed at how long it took. I undid a long edge that had already been bound off, using a tubular cast off, which was much more time consuming than doing the bind off in the first place. What really helped was using my tapestry needle to help find the woven in ends and loosen bind off stitches as I went.

IMG_1254After a long time, I made it to the stockinette fabric. I had alternated skeins, so I needed to frog a couple of rows, then switch, and frog with the second skein. Whee. This also took way longer than I thought it would. But I got to where I needed to go, and knitted once more. Which I thought initially was going well, until I realized I was knitting the wrong pattern. Ha. So then I had to do some proper unknitting using my needles. Without twisting my stitches. Tricky. Yet again, I did get to where I needed to go. Third time lucky, everything seems okay now. But really, my shenanigans took the better part of a day and I was happy that I could work on my project out on the patio. Which kind of looks like this:

Rena in the garden 2013

…except with piles of knitting all around me, which I bet you can imagine what that looks like.

And guess what I get to do today? We meet again, tubular bind off. I’ll be out there soon, concentrating very hard.

x Rena

Birthday Sale!

Birthday_candles

Happy birthday to me and happy birthday savings for you for the next 24 hours. I admit I’m a couple of days late, what with all of the festivities and all. The offer is 36% off all patterns on Ravelry from The Red Fox and Gown. Now go, quickly, because this won’t happen again till next year! Use birthday36 at checkout.

Now, for another slice of ice cream cake in this 33 C heat wave. And happy Canada Day to the Canadians out there too!

x Rena

The Red Fox and Gown At Wet Coast Wools

 

wcw2

This is too cool not to share with you. My designs are on display at Wet Coast Wools in Vancouver, BC, as part of the local designers’ display for June. Thank you to the lovely Glenda for including The Red Fox and Gown. Also, if you’ve noticed the bright yarn, my sister Krista has her Rain City Knits yarn on display too! I love the theme and I’m so glad to be part of this.

L to R: Rain City Knits yarn skeins, Morgan Hat, Red Fox Fingerless Gloves, Cloud Cowl and Foxy Business Hat.

If you’re in Vancouver, stop by Wet Coast Wools for a visit. I joined the weekly Thursday summer sweater KAL yesterday from 1-3pm. The ladies are a riot! Cheers for letting me crash the party.

x Rena

Stitch Markers: Kitties in Clay

Meow!

Meow!

I couldn’t resist the polymer clay again. At your suggestion, I made some kitty cat stitch markers! I love them. My actual cats, Ben and Kiki, are intrigued by the figures made from clay. I think they must smell delicious.

kitty2

Like the puppy stitch markers I showed you yesterday, I’m really happy with the result. I learned from my internet sleuthing that the key to a surface free of fingerprints is using rubbing alcohol to wipe them down. The rubbing alcohol dissolves the surface and leaves it smooth. Hooray! That solves my biggest pet peeve about clay.

A trio of felines.

A trio of felines. The stitch markers kind of look like halos.

Ha ha, I said pet peeve! Get it? Ok, I’ll stop with the bad jokes. Although I clearly have been exploring the domesticated animal kingdom so far. I think I’ll try bunnies next. And down the road, mini food. Because it’s also ridiculously cute.

Here’s the obligatory tail shot…

kitty4

Has this blog gone to the cats and the dogs?*

x Rena

* I did say I’d quit with the bad jokes…oops.