Are You a Starter or a Finisher?

Some people are natural “starters.” They live for the creative beginning of projects, but not the day-to-day execution or the follow through. I start things but don’t always finish. My energy comes from seeing new ideas and kicking things off. Apparently Starters love prototyping an idea, but once they’ve figured it out, they’re ready to move on to something else.

That definition makes me a Starter, especially when it comes to knitting. Although there is an enormous sense of achievement when I do finish a project, I have several projects waiting in the wings along with some collecting dust because I just lost interest.

Knitting yarns are a draw to me like a bee to pollen. I can spend as long in a wool shop as many do in a book shop. Online wool shops are also my downfall and I have boxes of wool and half made projects. I suppose strictly speaking I should refer to my stash of wool as a ‘stash of yarn’, not all is actually wool, a lot is a mixture of acrylic and wool and some is 100% acrylic. I do have some skeins of alpaca because I love the feel of it but don’t actually have anything in mind to use it for – yet.

This is my stash of yarn. If you look carefully you will see an unfinished crochet Minion, which seemed like a good idea at the time and I hope to have finished by Christmas. In fairness there are a lot of odds and ends following the actual completion of projects.

There are three parts to every project, starting, finishing and everything in between. It is the everything in between bit I stumble over.

My problem is that I see a pattern I like and order the yarn without really thinking things through or taking into account what else I have on the go. A good example of this is when I saw an attractive and different cardigan pattern by Bergere De France with the wool on offer and rashly bought it. This was about 4 months ago and I am yet to start it, so on this occasion I am not even a Starter.

The other issue is my liking for unusual random dyed wools, such as Sirdar Crofter DK. Having never made socks before I bought some of the Crofter wool and pattern. I did actually finish soon after I started, but only one sock and that was at the end of August. Yesterday, the beginning of October, I started its pair. Silly really as they don’t take that long to knit.

I suppose I could call myself a procastinating finisher, I need to set myself goals. Spurred on by my imminent stay with my daughter and grandchildren, this cardigan for my granddaughter, also knitted in Sirdar Crofter, which I started in July, was completed a few days ago.

Around about the same time I was carried away with the idea of a cable jumper for my grandson, that way they would both have something knitted by Grannie given to them at the same time. You can see how far I have got with this one. I have set myself a goal for completion – It will be a Christmas present for him, that is December 2014.

I don’t always buy wool for new projects I do start things using yarn from my stash. There are some great and quick ways of using up leftover yarns, such as tea cosies. This is one I finished recently, despite the fact I am not sure what to do with it. I just liked the pattern, which was an on-line freebie. I can’t even make them to sell and recoup some of the cost of the wool, as patterns like this one specifically state they are only be used for personal use and not for commercial purposes.   I suppose I could give them away on the condition that a donation to a charity such as Macmillan is made, that’s an idea!  Anyone want a tea cosy?

Then there are the red mittens I decided to make last night for my grandson to go with his Bristol City football scarf, which I gave him last Christmas. Just one mitten to finish by Thursday but as it only took one evening for one mitten this will be achievable.

Not everything I make is knitted, I do crochet sometimes. This last photo is not only a great stash buster, jargon for using up yarn, but also started and finished with everything in between done without a break. My eldest daughter saw this on Kirstie Allsopp’s Fill Your House For Free and asked me if I had time would I make one. I did on both counts.

If this post manages anything it will succeed in prompting me into finishing my outstanding projects, whilst I wait for my next purchase of exciting wool to be delivered.

Are you a Starter or Finisher?