(Luckily I drafted all but this paragraph earlier in the week, it has been scorching hot here in Dingwall. On Friday it hit a barmy 23°C here (that’s 73.4°F). That is a cool Spring day to my blogging friends in Arizona and other hot states/countries but given we have our heating set in winter to 18°C (64°F) and that’s warm and I garden in a t-shirt when it hits 14°C (57°C) you can hopefully appreciate I am not used to 23°!! There’s no ceiling fans or air conditioning in Scotland and probably not in 99% of UK homes. Anyhoo, whilst I melt into a puddle and try not to scratch my prickly heat, please go ahead and read my round-up of the YOP year.)
This was my first Year of Projects, but officially in the Year of Projects Ravelry Group it’s been their 8th year. The year starts at the beginning of each July and runs until the end of June. Each Sunday blog posts are published and shared in our Ravelry Forum/Group. Some people are regulars with posts every week and others dip in when they can.l0o
Discovering this group last July came at such a perfect time in my life. I was lonely, looking for some inspiration and needed some motivation to keep me busy during my sabbatical from work. I then resigned and have spent the last year concentrating on working on creative projects, learning new crafts and finding confidence in my abilities and finding joy in the small things.
I’d like to thank each of my fellow Yoppers, who gave me advice, gave me compliments and most of all inspired me with their own beautiful projects.
So here it is, my final list and a gallery of photos at the end of each section. This year I’ve learnt a lot, such as how to knit socks and cardigans, new techniques, how to dye yarn and fibre and how to wet felt garments and much much more. It’s been an adventure. New thoughts about my projects are in italics.
I’ve switched the list to alphabetical order of category, so if you aren’t interested in a particular craft you can skip ahead. This is a format I will continue into the new year.
✅ Achieved this year
❇️ Started this year
*️⃣ Additional projects added to my list during the year
➡️ Carried forward to YOP year 9.
❗️ Removed from this years list, may reappear on a future list.
- Make an octopus for a preemie (cotton and hook arrived wk 13) ❗️
- Make a jellyfish for a preemie ❗️
- Get to grips with UK -v- US terms! ❗️
Natural Fibre and/or Homespun yarn
- British 56s ✅ wk 4 and 11
- *️⃣ Over dye ethereal ether merino ✅ wk 6
- Blue Faced Leicester ✅ wk 26
- *️⃣ Mohair ✅ wk 26
- *️⃣ Merino palette practice ✅ wk 44
- Samoyed Dog hair ➡️
- Bamboo ➡️
- Merino/silk blend ➡️
- Merino/suri alpaca blend ➡️
- Corriedale fibre ➡️
- Portland ➡️
Commercial Undyed Yarn
- Cheviot chunky wool ✅ wk 6
- Merino silk blend ✅ wk 25
- *️⃣ BFL sock yarn ✅ wk 45 gradient set
- Merino bamboo blend ➡️
- BFL/silk blend ➡️
- Chimney Fire cardigan with Malabrigo Rios yarn ✅ wk 14. It is quite heavy cardigan and the yarn has started to pill pretty quickly. As a first cardigan though I am still very proud I made it.
- Void shawl with Rowan Lima yarn ❇️ (Started wk 26) ➡️ I like this pattern but I can’t seem to memorise the stitches and it is so wide. I’m still undecided as to how big I will make it, so it is being carried over to next year.
- *️⃣ Elda cardigan with Ripples Crafts Cochrane yarn. ✅ wk 47. It’s been too warm to wear it so far, I loved knitting with this yarn and hope it wears well.
- *️⃣ Quick Sand cardigan in Drops Bomull-Linn cotton/linen yarn ✅ wk 50. I love this cardigan! The yarn has softened and feels lovely. I will make this pattern again and will be purchasing the Fine Sand pattern to make a DK version too. I will also make a wool/silk version of Quick Sand too, I have some yarn to dye for it.
- Make my husband a pair of socks using Regia Pairfect ✅ wk 18. He’s only worn them once or twice, so he’s officially off the sock knit worthy list! I can’t report on how well the yarn is wearing..as they aren’t being worn!
- Make my dad something for Christmas, socks using Henny Penny Makes yarn ✅ wk 25. I know my dad was thrilled with his socks, I don’t know how many times he has worn them but I know he wore them New Year’s Eve and showed them off to neighbours.
- 2nd pair of socks for myself with Ripples Crafts Reliable Sock yarn (it’s bluebell time of year colour) ✅ wk 32. Oooh I love the colour of these socks, these used Hermiones Everyday Socks (HES) pattern. I have used this yarn (in other colours) for hats, scarves, gloves and socks, it’s soft and hard wearing.
- *️⃣ 3rd pair of socks for myself with West Yorkshire Spinners Signature 4 Ply in Wood Pigeon colour ✅ wk 36. Surprisingly the yarn has felted a little on the heel. Again I used the HES pattern as it fits so well.
- *️⃣ 4th pair of socks for myself with Cookston Crafts sock yarn in Brie colour ✅ wk 42. Yep another HES pair, but I made a slight mistake on the purl placement in the pattern and these are a little looser than my other pairs, so maybe that’s the yarn or the pattern change.
- Make something with purple and gold homespun (merino/bamboo) yarn ✅ (Hitchhiker wk 11). I’ve worn this Hitchhiker a lot and it gets softer with wear. This was some of my earliest successful spinning so it is great I get to wear it so much.
- *️⃣ Cheviot home-dyed chunky yarn set ✅ wk 19. This is a set for when it is really cold! Very warm.
- *️⃣ Make Lintilla scarf with Ripples Crafts Reliable Sock yarn ✅ wk 24. This is a little tricky to wear and I don’t think its a pattern I would re-knit. I prefer the hitchhiker shape. Also it isn’t as soft as my first socks I knit with the same skein of yarn. I’m tempted to stick it in the washing machine and see if that softens the feel.
- *️⃣ Hat for Allistar using Fractal homespun ✅ wk 26. I’m pleased to say that my husband has worn this a lot this winter so that’s nice. This was my first go at fractal spinning.
- *️⃣ Swirly swooshy hat ✅ wk 38. This is the 2nd time I’ve knit this pattern, its a wee bit too big for my head I think but I will try wearing it again next winter, but then may donate it or frog it.
- Knit (or crochet) all the scraps of leftover sock and sport weight wool. ✅ wk 12 Mitred squares for keeping stitch markers, glasses case, dog poop bag holder, started a northeast blanket, but doubt I’ll finish it. Any decent sized scraps will be kept for ankle socks, seems a waste to add such expensive yarns to a blanket.
- Make set with perpetual purple hand-spun ❗️I used some on a smitten mitten but need a proper plan for the rest.
- Learn fair isle knitting and knit one of the small fair isle items in my queue ✅ wk 3. Try >2 colour fair isle ✅ wk 38. I knit 2 fair isle hats and a wee DPN holder. The first hat was way too tight and gifted to a friend’s 2 year old! The 2nd hat is a little loose but at least it doesn’t give me hat hair!
- *️⃣ Knit something Two at a Time ✅ wk 18. I originally knit a pair of mittens, but have since done my socks TAAT.
- *️⃣ Learn herringbone stitch to make a neck-warmer ✅ wk 38. Not something I’ll likely do again as it is a very time consuming stitch. It’s been gifted to a friend as she likes a warm headband to cover her ears and this fits fine and will be toasty.
- Learn brioche stitch ❇️ (YouTube watching wk 13) ➡️ I know the theory, but yet to try it.
- *️⃣ Christmas mouse pictures ✅ wk 25. I love these and may make some more of these to sell. Maybe I should make some other holiday ones, not just Christmas.
- *️⃣ Christmas bauble ✅ wk 25. An experiment to see if I could felt samoyed dog hair decorated with merino…a great idea as the bulk of it is free fibre! I could have improved the shape but never mind.
- *️⃣ A picture of our parrot ✅ wk 37. I’m still really pleased how this turned out. It hangs on the wall next to my husband’s side of the bed. He likes it.
- A 3D animal…probably my dog Ylva ➡️ Carried forward as I’ve been struggling to get going with needle felting, distracted by my other new crafts.
- Make up some more bug related fairies…to go with my ladybird one ➡️ As above.
Sea Glass and Shells
- Create a project bag and notions pouch ✅ wk 6
- *️⃣ Make autumnal leaves cushion ✅ wk 52
- Perpetual purple merino ✅ wk 3. Spun during tour de fleece last year and still no plan for it!
- Plum merino and gold bamboo ✅ wk 3. Became a hitchhiker scarf.
- Ethereal ether ✅ wk 8. Had to be over-dyed when Facebook thought it was nude photo! Some of it became a coffee cup cosy. I’ll use some for a smitten mitten.
- British 56s ✅ wk 12. Some early dyeing practice, quite scratchy wool so some has become some smitten mittens and the rest may as well.
- Shetland ✅ wk 24. This was fibre I was given as part of Brit Spin. I dyed this after spinning it but don’t yet have a plan for what it will become.
- Camel & silk ✅ wk 24. An absolute joy to spin and knitting the Easy Goes It shawl with it.
- Corriedale poppy ✅ wk 24. My first go at fractal spinning, that became a hat for my husband.
- *️⃣ Blue Faced Leicester ✅ wk 33. I dyed the fibre and then spun it, it has a lovely sheen, I made one smitten mitten with it and it feels gorgeous. No plan yet for the rest.
- *️⃣ North Ronaldsay humbug (added to list and started wk 31) ✅ wk 33. This is very woolly wool so I don’t know what it will become. I did wonder about dyeing it and making more smitten mittens with it. Or perhaps some mats to go under plant pots.
- Alpaca. ❗️ I’ve been told alpaca is best blended so I need to do that but haven’t got around to it this year.
- Spin some Samoyed dog hair ✅ wk 6. No matter how many times I wash it, it still smells of dog, I have a lot more to spin and need to do that next year.
- Master chain ply ✅ wk 12. Himalayan blend chain ply was nice and smooth at joints, my camel and silk also worked really well chain plied for getting colour separation and when knitting I didn’t see or feel the chain joints.
- Create a fractal spun yarn ✅ wk 24 Allistar’s hat yarn
- Create my own wool and silk blended spin ✅ wk 29. I have tried with my blending board but would like to make more and do it on my hackle as well.
- Spin some tweed yarn ✅ wk 29. I haven’t tried with nepps yet but have with silk waste flecks.
- Create an official (not accidental) art yarn ✅ wk 51. I added some sparkle and spun thick’n’thin yarn, I don’t think art yarn is necessarily my thing, but we shall see. I’ll see if I can make a smitten mitten out of it.
- *️⃣ Weave a practice scarf with Hayfield Spirit DK yarn ✅ wk 42. Acrylic/wool knitting yarn, but actually very happy with the finished scarf.
- *️⃣ Weave a double weave scarf ✅ wk 48. The same yarn as above and ideal as a TV watching shawl.
- *️⃣ Weave a scarf with Ripples Crafts Peat and Rocks BFL gradient set ✅ wk 52. I enjoyed playing around with the pattern and changes of yarn. I have plenty of yarn left to make another.
- A picture of a Highland Cow ✅ wk 4. I wasn’t fully happy with it but as a first attempt it was ok.
- Make a fancy scarf or wrap using nuno felting ✅ wk 11 and wk 16. I ended up making 12 scarves! I gifted 4 of them and 6 were passed to the Fuzzy Thistle Shop in Strathpeffer to sell.
- A case for my craft scissors ✅ wk 16. The wrong shape but I like the effect of adding the sari silk waste.
- A coin purse ✅ wk 35. I love this and have so far failed to reproduce it. I use it all the time and it is wearing well.
- *️⃣ A pair of slippers ✅ wk 33. The Icelandic wool has a real halo, as I’ve worn them they seem to get fluffier and fluffier. So cosy in winter but too warm to wear in summer.
- *️⃣ A loose casual waistcoat or jacket ✅ wk 37. I wish this fit me better, I really like the style and look, I’m just not sure where I’d wear it as I’m not really someone who goes out. I may wear it at some music festivals later in the summer.
- *️⃣ Lampshade ✅ wk 39. So far I’ve made 10 lampshades in 8 styles for my own home and love them all.
- *️⃣ Tide clock with sky and sea blends (moved forward from next year’s draft list) ✅ wk 39. I do try to remember to check it before going to the beach with the dog, but regardless I like the look of it.
- *️⃣ Tea cosy for small teapot ✅ wk 41. Very happy with this wee project using wool and sari silk waste.
- *️⃣ Felt a back for hand painted autumn flowers silk painting (to make a cushion). ✅ wk 44. This didn’t have to be perfect as it was just for the back of a cushion but I like the look.
- *️⃣ Pouch for tape measure…or something else! ✅ wk 49. This was one of the failed attempts to make another coin purse, ah well never mind at least I know where my tape is!
- A picture of my dog Ylva ❗️
- A project bag using the plastic loop handles in my stash ➡️ Carried over to next year.
I tried to think of my Top 5 items from the year but that was pretty tough. My seascape lampshades, 3 cardigans and socks would be up there, but it’s just too difficult picking a top 5, but my favourite items is probably my seascape lampshade that sits on our standard/floor lamp in the living room (see bottom middle image on lampshade collage)…And my yarn bowl!
I hope you’ve enjoyed reading about my projects throughout the year and this year end round up. I don’t have any children, am taking an extended career break and have a limited social life as I’m such an introvert…so please don’t compare my list to others. We have varying degrees of crafting time available and this is not a competition to see who can do most. This group has been a life saver for me. I was in a dark place before joining the group and it really has been a blessing to be part of and to feel I have made some new friends around the world…it’s been brilliant.
Do follow the link to the group at the top of the page if you are interested in joining us for the new year.