january recap.

A few months ago, I read the book Essentialism by Greg McKeown. Every time I picked it up and continued on, I thought to myself, “Yes, of course! This is exactly what I want my life to look like.” The subject of the book is to only keep the essential things in your life and cull the rest of it. This includes relationships, work, possessions, and family.

One of his points was that the Essentialist needs to take periodical breaks, which result in greater inspiration and productivity. Which is why I took the month off.

It may have been just me, but I felt like–because I didn’t have the pressure of putting out a blog post–this month was longer than usual. It was relaxed, but I still got a substantial bit of work done … arranging pattern support for test knitters, working along side indie dyers for new patterns, and swatching. Lots of swatching.

In the early weeks of January, I chose a word for the year. I haven’t done this in the past, but Helen Stewart talked about it quite a bit on her Curious Handmade podcast, and the idea grew on me. My word is “Outsource.”

One thing that I really disliked about last year is that I seemed to be doing an unreasonable amount of work, while at the same time not producing as much as I know I could have. Usually it’s just me and my tech-editor, Anna, behind the scenes.

I am growing the TSM team (and I put it like that ’cause I like sounding official) from just us to a few test-knitters and a photographer, who’s work you’ll see here in the upcoming months, or on her blog, where she’s challenged herself to take a photo everyday. There are some pretty amazing shots there so far, and I love her writing.

(On that note, if you’d like to be a test knitter and knit a yet-to-be-released pattern, get in touch. I’d love to work with you! I’ve started a thread on the TSM Ravelry group, if you’re interested.)

I have also challenged myself to do the Year of 100 Nos, which isn’t really an event or an official challenge. If you’d like to know more, listen to Episode 14 of the 6 Bits Storybooks podcast. I’ll explain it in greater detail at a later date, when I have progress to report.


We took a weekend trip to Portland, and so, of course, we had to hit up a few yarn stores while we were there. From Knit Purl, I got two skeins of Brooklyn Tweed Loft, in the colors Ash and Snowbound.


From Twisted, I got a skein of undyed Imperial Yarn Columbia (which is an aran weight).


Still no idea what I will do with either of them, but that’s generally how I buy my yarn.

That was fun, and I got lots of knitting done (which I’ve ripped out since then).

Pattern due out March-ish. (The yarn is Toil and Trouble Allegory in the color Isa.

I’ve started spinning! I’ve spun 3 bobbins (and named them Bert, Frank, and Fred, in that order) and I love it so much. After I find my carders (I swear they just sprouted feet and walked off), I’m going to process the fleece I started on this summer and spin it into glorious yarn. I’m very excited.


Oh, and also in January, I turned 17. It was a fun day. I ate lots of food.


Now, I’m looking to the rest of this month.

I’m hosting a micro-KAL for the book I reviewed in December, Fine Things for Plain Occasions by Hunter Hammersen. It’s going to be really little; probably just me and Rea and maybe one or two other people. If you’re interested, just go to the group and post on that thread. I’m thinking about starting it on the 10th, so if you want to join, order your yarn now, or go spelunking in your stash. I’ll be knitting Essential to Perfection out of Quince and Co. Finch.


That’s mainly it. But I am happy to be blogging again. I have several interesting/informative posts lined up for the upcoming months, so stay tuned.

See you soon!




10 thoughts on “january recap.

  1. You are a better designer than I………I don’t swatch. I really should and I KNOW I really should but I just detest doing it. It seems like such a waste of good yarn. ::sigh::


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