Thursday, 31 December 2015

So long 2015, it was good knowing you!

It's New Year's Eve (or Old Year's Night as it's called here in Norfolk) so time to look back on the past year and be rather embarrassed by my attempts to stick to my knitting resolutions. It's not felt like it's been a great year knitting-wise as I lost almost 6 months of crafting time because of tendinitis in my wrist and thumb. So let's see how I did with my resolutions!

1. To knit from stash as much as possible.
Oh dear, it's not been good. Too many temptations this year including IKnit Fandango, Fibre East, Ally Pally, Festiwool and a trip to Ireland, not to mention the closing down sale of The Natural Dye Studio. My yarn stash runneth over. I calculated the number of miles of yarn using the spreadsheet facility on Ravelry, and let's just say that I have A LOT!! Enough said. So this morning I re-organised my stash by dyer/company and all the boxes are labelled. It should be a piece of cake to locate yarn for a project and therefore I won't need to buy any! (Are you laughing and saying, 'yeah, right!'?)

2. To spin regularly and try to attend some guild meetings, as well as enter some handspun yarn into the spinning competitions at Fibre East.
I started off the year doing quite a bit of spinning, although I didn't make it to any meetings. I've put my guild membership on hold for now so that I don't feel guilty for not going! I did enter a variety of skeins and handspun knits into the competitions at Fibre East and was utterly amazed when I discovered that I had won the overall spinning competition. It's frustrating that I haven't been able to spin since then, but with luck, I should be getting back to it early on in 2016.

Fibre East spinning competition 2015 (11)

3. To write up and publish my knitting and crochet patterns.
I was delighted when I was approached to take part in a blog tour to launch a limited edition pack of yarn from Stylecraft and designed a cushion cover to show off the colours. This pattern has been published on Ravelry (pattern here) and I have also published the pattern for my tape measure cosy. A sock pattern is currently being test knitted and there are a couple of others in the pipeline too. Exciting times ahead!

4. To try some colourwork.
Nope! Not this year again, I'm afraid! But I shall be taking a colourwork class at Loop next month so am hoping that this will be the nudge I need. One of the things the class covers is learning to knit in the continental style, and I am wondering if this will be easier on my joints. I'll tell you more when I've done the class!

5. To finish projects that are currently hibernating on Ravelry.
Not done too well on this, but I have done quite a bit of frogging today and my hibernating projects are all ones I want to finish. Knitting time is too precious to work on something you don't love!

6. To improve my sewing skills.
I have sewed on and off during the year and found that it was something I could do wearing my splint provided that it wasn't too fiddly. I bought a new sewing machine and Santa Mr JK gave me an overlocker for Christmas, so I am looking forward to even more sewing adventures next year. Here's a collection of my sewing projects this year.

Sewing Year 2015

Other highlights this year include teaching my friend Diane and her friends to knit socks. Diane has gone on to knit several more pairs and even better, her daughter has started knitting and sewing too after staying here for a weekend. I just love it when a new knitter is born. Another highlight was receiving a photo from Melissa of her gorgeous daughter Thora wearing a cardigan I knitted for her. We've only ever met in 'Blogland' but I love it that friendships can grow through a shared love of crafting. Just look at Thora's beautiful smile - definitely a knitworthy baby! I also volunteered at Fibre East and plan to do the same again next summer. It was so much fun.

As 2016 is a matter of hours away, I guess I should think about my knitting goals. I don't think that they will change much from previous years if I'm honest.

1. To knit from stash as much as possible.
2. To sew a garment that is actually wearable!
3. To continue designing and publish some more patterns.
4. To improve my free motion stitching.
5. To start spinning again.
6. To finish my Cosy blanket and my Love Squared blanket.

Thank you so much for reading my blog. I do love writing it and it does astound me that people want to read about the happenings chez josiekitten. Have a very Happy New Year and may 2016 be filled with good times for you and your loved ones. xxx


Gracey is not my name.... said...

Since I started blogging for the Year of Projects, my goals tend to be wrapped up in that...but I'm all about...oh that's pretty...must do that next.....good luck with your goals...and oh my what a cute model!

Judy said...

I LOVE reading your blog, Helen, and seeing your gorgeous photos! Thank you for taking the time out of your busy schedule to post (and especially for keeping your readers entertained w/Flo's antics and your travels).

Hoping 2016 w/be a great year of crafting for you!

Bizzy B said...

Judy has just said exactly what I wanted to say. I love Flo, your travel pictures, any pictures you take of your local places, what you bake, and of course, what you knit, crochet, sew. Thank you.

busybusybeejay said...

AAll the best for 2016.

Claire said...

Happy new year to you, Mr JK and Flo. Hope you manage to crack your resolutions in 2016 :) I haven't even formulated mine yet but they include getting fit, losing weight and producing Romney Wool luxury cushions for sale.

Lisa Humbert said...

I love your blog and read every new update. My favorite from 2015 is Thora and her sweater.

Kirsty Adams said...

Happy New Year! I always look forward to reading your blog every week! I had the same goal with colourwork for 2015... And have said the same as you for 2016!! Happy knitting and overall crafting in 2016!

Jenny said...

Happy New Year to you all at JK mansions. I hope you get a full year of injury free crafting and I don't doubt there will be stash enhancement especially if Snoopydog is involved in trips out. Look forward to reading all about it.

Snoopydog said...

Great post! Your sewing is very impressive. I think the 'knitting only from stash' is a very sensible idea. Hmmm, might be sensible but sensible is pretty boring! ;-) xx

Spinthrift said...

Well done for such a productive year and thank you for an enjoyable (and so regularly updated) blog. It often cheers up my Sunday evening blues!
Happy New Year. :-)