I often overcommit myself. This was one of my concerns when starting the TKGA Master Hand-Knitter program. I tried to clear a few gift-making projects (that were gravely overdue) early in January before I got my Level I instructions. But as I have gotten into the heart of the Level I tasks, I have started getting more involved with Ravelry as it is a great resource for TKGA discussions and information. I have also been using Raverly to organize my stash and get serious about a queue of projects that should help me through some extreme stash-busting. There are a lot of vests and shrugs on my queue because it seems I almost never get a whole sweater’s worth of yarn.
But this queuing has lead to some extreme stash-guilt. I hadn’t realized how much stash I had collected that was intended for some project or another. I hadn’t realized how much stash I really had until I moved last year! Now all of the craft resources are in one place, and rather than inspiring me, I feel like they are all mocking me. I am being taunted by my foolish good intentions. My Ravelry queue is a scathingly unrealistic list of projects (which either I bought yarn for purposefully, or I have assigned to my queue based on having appropriate stash – Ravelry’s pattern search is wonderful for that). To get through the queue would likely take me a few years even if I had no other projects of any kind going on in my life.
Naturally, these damning realizations about my unrealistic stash/queue expectations have greatly contributed to my will-power to be thrifty in craft purchases. But they have had a dampening effect on my crafting joie de vivre. This makes me no less interested in completing Level I of the Master Hand-Knitting program, but it does give me pause about my original intention to jump right into Level II (especially coupled with my first semester of grad school coming up in the fall – I also have a full-time job).
As one last example of overcommitted…
This blanket (approx 2.5’x3.25′) was intended to be a gift for an expecting family when it was started over 2 years ago. It’s a long story as to why it was not completed on time, and I cannot take full credit for the design or the knitting, as it was intended as a group project. Let’s just say that the group’s enthusiasm waned over time (there seems to be a direct link between a tendency toward perfectionism and level of frustration while learning to knit – I am not a perfectionist and I think this makes me a poor teacher for some personality types). And after a year or so, I was in possession of 90% of the blocks required and zero time to sew it together.
I have been increasingly haunted by this piece, and frustrated that I had not completed it. So at last I sewed all the pieces together, blocked it, applied a binding…. and now I have the peculiar task of figuring out how to deliver such a belated gift. I can’t give it to someone else, I can’t keep it, and despite everything that went wrong with the concept and execution, it still has a lot of love poured into it from a lot of sources. I just don’t know how much of this I should explain to the mom of the 2 year old. I have considered dropping it off at her doorstep…
In any case, I have a great sense of relief at having this one project completed. It has been an albatross around my neck for too long. I only wish I didn’t have a stash-closet full of other such weighty intentions.