Oddly, this is going to be a post without any pictures of knitting, so I thought I would get a little cat shaming in. This is the rather unexpected view I got from Cat when I looked upwards in our utility room. Sadly I was too slow to get the full belly sprawl, which we were treated to moments before, which looked like an oddly coloured mess of candy floss – with little tiny feet….
So why the lack of knitting pictures (I hear you ask)? Well, I am well into my Christmas knitting frenzy and I do like to give surprises as well as woolly goodness. There will be no pictures until everything has been unwrapped. All I can say at this stage is that I am on track and still knitting other things (a good sign, as panic mode is best detected by the absence of knitting for myself).
So here are my top tips for surviving Christmas knitting
1: Plan early and realistically. You will never knit everyone you know a sweater (you know I’m right).
2: Look hard at your list and answer three key questions
(a) Do they appreciate my work?
(b) Have I fallen into the “but I make them something every year so now I have to” trap?
(c) Will they look after it (although, admittedly, acrylic might solve that problem)?
Remember, better to make two fantastic things and be well received than kill yourself making 20 gifts that are treated like a joke. Feel free to put some people on a “reserves” list, if you do get time then go for it!
3: Give yourself a time budget of a project a month and then count backwards from December (don’t try to count December as life tends to get in the way of any serious knitting time, whether it is turkeys or work parties). If you find yourself counting past the current month, then re-examine your knit list and then prioritise (you have my permission to be ruthless).
4: Using that time budget of a month, realistically work out what your actual knitting time will be. Then half it and half it again. Trust me, you will be overly optimistic on your time budget.
5: Pick a project that will fit that time budget and be honest about how much time it takes *you* to knit it. Aunty June may love your shawls but birthdays are good gift occasions too (and are more spread out). Hats are surprisingly fast, cute and useful. Face cloths (with fancy soap) can be personalised and made in an evening. Phone cosies can also be fun, cute and useful.
Anyone else got any knitting for Christmas advice? Or perhaps some epic deadline fails to share (I myself am still finishing a scarf that was supposed to be on last year’s list, fingers crossed for this year).