Tuesday, March 24, 2015

A Treatise in Defense of Project Polyamory

So last Sunday I said something about trying to be "good" and not cast on anything new.

And while I realize I am very far from the first to raise this important question (The Yarn Harlot herself has been blogging about it for over a decade), I'd still like to ask... When the heck did the number of projects one has cast on become an issue of character?

Is this, like, a Puritan thing?  Because I am definitely not the right tree to bark up with that one.  My nose will have no truck with your grindstone, and you can see your nineteenth century Protestant Work Ethic right back out the same way it came in.

I've been wrestling with this issue for several months.   Friends of the show are no doubt sick of my annual self-flagellation over the state of the work-basket, followed by a month-long parade of Finally Finished Objects.   Remember the year I had 25 projects at the beginning of the month?  I was so horrified by my excess.  My... weakness.

Well, I've started listening to knitting podcasts, and friends, I am a RANK AMATEUR in the work-in-progress department.   One podcaster's WIP count is hanging out around 30, another probably has that many socks in progress.  I want to say at one point I heard the number "75" bandied about.

Folks, my current WIP count  of 11 does not even rate.

And here is the thing -- the one with seventy-something projects?  She is not even the least bit sorry.  No apologies, hashtag: noregrets, etc.   Because what if one project is the wrong season?  Or it got to a tricky bit, and she needed social knitting?  Or maybe she is feeling lace right now, and not cables, or maybe it's the other way.  Point is, she's got options, baby.

So what if I already have two pairs of socks cast on?  What's it hurting if I cast on another pair?  Lord knows I've got plenty of sock yarn.  And I'm not likely to run out of needles any time soon either, I mean let's be real here.

But what about finishing things?  I can hear you cry.  Will you ever finish anything if you just cast on something new every time the wind changes or it's time to pick up a button band?

Repeat after me: This. Is. A. Hobby.  I do this for fun.

I'm not knitting to clothe my family because they would be naked if I didn't.  I knit because I like it.  Don't get me wrong-- I don't actually think that declaring a moratorium on project guilt is going to magically stop me from finishing things (there will always be February, after all).  Heck, I like to finish things.  I even occasionally go on a jag where I finish serially.  And that's okay too.  Basically, I just don't really think it's going to be an issue, but even if it were, who the hell cares? 

What harm am I doing?  Assuming the bills are paid, the children are warm and fed, and I'm not keeping projects in the china cabinet, I would say, simply: "none."

Now, if you'll excuse me, I'm going to go cast on a sweater.

Swish Worsted in the Winter Wonderland colorway.
Swatched on 8s and 9s, below and above the purl ridge, respectively.

From now on, I do what I want.

My New Knitting Motto

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