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When it’s time to start a knitting project, we usually sketch out the basic plan and its objectives like this, right?

I didn’t think so. As involved, expensive, and labor-intensive as knitting is (labor of love that it may be), many people jump into a project without any planning.

Like, all of you, right? I know. It’s okay.

MOMFreedom has joined KnitFreedom here in bracingly autumnal Salt Lake City for a few days of strategic planning, and it has really inspired me… to never make you guys go through this!!!

Knitting is an expression of creativity and joy, and it’s no wonder that many people don’t stop to check their gauge, measure themselves, or even hold up a color in front of their faces to see if if looks good.

I can relate – when I see that gorgeous model leaning on mast of a yacht, wearing nothing but a summer dress made of super-bulky wool, I don’t want ANYTHING to stand in the way of me having THAT EXPERIENCE.

Out comes the credit card. What could possibly go wrong?

How about hoping for this…

Voyageur Dress by Wenlan Chia

…and ending up looking like this?

All bundled up

It’s possible that lack of planning precipitated this sad state of affairs. But if you know them, it only takes a few tricks to avert knitting disaster.

How To Plan As Little As Possible, And Still Avert Disaster

Look like the gal on the boat. Follow these tips!

  1. Assess your favorite sweaters – the ones that look fabulous on you – and see if the one you are about to knit has the same shape and/or features. If you look great in deep V-necks or boat-necks, don’t make a turtleneck.
  2. Check the color of your yarn – hold the yarn up to your face and see if it makes you go,”Oooh! I look great!”
  3. Measure your gauge, even if you’ve already started knitting. If you aren’t going to make a gauge swatch, at least hold a ruler up to your stitches once you’re a few inches into the project. At worst, you’ll avert a sizing disaster. At best, you’ll be able to smugly say to yourself, “I knew it.”
    How to Check Your Gauge
    How to Cheat on Your Gauge Swatch

That wasn’t so bad, was it?

If you’d like to learn additional basic knitting skills like checking your gauge and blocking, download my free video knitting dictionary here.

And, as promised, Regis and Kelly’s policy on knitting topics for the show: NO WAY.

Aw, snap! Of all the media producers I met with in New York, the LIVE! with Regis & Kelly show was the only one that had a strict anti-knitting stance. Many more producers totally got how cool knitting is and invited me to contribute to their shows.

Happily, I will be sharing how knitting can make you awesome on Bonnie D. Graham’s Read My Lips radio broadcast on BlogTalkRadio on 11/29, at 7:00pm EST. Mark your calendars! (But don’t worry – if you don’t want to plan that much, I’ll remind you).

Keep reading:
KnitFreedom has lots of knitting tricks like this to save your time and sanity. Check out all the Knitting Tricks here.

If you liked this article on how to get away with not planning, post in the comments!

8 thoughts on “How To Get Away With Not Planning”

  1. I like your article, it’s makes so much sense. I don’t knit clothing. I can knit socks with a video helping, I have trouble with the heels. I love to knit dishcloths for myself and family. I also knit simple baby blankets. I have bought yarn and found it doesn’t work for me or I didn’t like working with it. Like big bulky yarn. To much for my hands. Hugs,

    1. Hi Sandi,
      Great to hear from you! Sorry for the delay in replying. Have you tried our toe-up socks class? It teaches a very simple heel that is easy to memorize.

      It’s great that through experimentation you are discovering what kinds of yarn you like working with. This will help you avoid wasting money or time on projects you don’t enjoy in the future!


  2. Elsebeth in Denmark

    I loved your article and had so much fun reading it. I totally get the idea of imagining how sexy and wonderful you will look once you have finished your new sweater and the disappointment that it does not turn out exactly as “planned”. And this happening not only once but again and again. Will I ever learn…. sighh….

    1. Hi Elsebeth,
      I’m so glad you liked this post! This is such a common experience for almost everybody. Those three tips will get you a long way toward avoiding the biggest disappointments. Hugs!

  3. Hello, I am new to KnitFreedom. I understand the subject of your post but not the pictures. Basically , you are showing a thin woman and a very large woman. The model has a dress and the woman in the snow has a red hat? I get that. Just wish there was another way to post so that it didn’t feel like the laugh was at the expense of the very large woman. Maybe an after picture of the large woman wearing something lovely.

    1. Hi Phyllis,
      Welcome to KnitFreedom, and thank you for your comment! I understand what you mean, although it wasn’t my intention to make fun of anyone. I just tried to find an image of someone all bundled up. I will look for another image to put there. Thank you!!

  4. Hi Ada!
    Thanks for your comment! I think this is a great addition to the list. Alpaca is a tough one, isn't it? I had a BlueSky Alpacas silk and alpaca lace cowl that I NEVER wore – it was strangely prickly on my skin, even as it was soft. Your post means a lot – especially considering that you are a designer of knitting pattern software! Cool! Check out her site here: http://www.greatknitdesigns.com/

  5. Love this post! I almost blew coffee at the transition between the 2 photos! LOL. Everything you say here, though, is sooooooooooo true. I can vouch for the effectiveness of your recommended strategy – both by "virtue" of some of the disasters I have knit, as well as the successes. I would add one more thing – hold the yarn next to your neck or whatever other part of the body will be touched by the finished item. I actually put the skeins around my neck and "wear" them for a few hours. This has helped me now be honest with myself when I will be too sensitive to a yarn, even if it feels incredibly soft to my (hand) touch. Sadly, it has helped me confirm that I absolutely cannot wear alpaca – sad, sad.

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