My Fall 2017 Making List

If you missed the concept and explanation of my Making List, you can check out my first post for more details. Essentially, it's a way for me to focus my energies on the projects that are most important to me and feel less scattered/overwhelmed about my making.

The following items from my original Making List have been completed or cast on:

  1. Saturday Matinee Socks - finished
  2. Rainbow Leyburn Socks - finished, but as a different pair of socks that I started!
  3. Lopi Pullover - cast on
  4. Fen Dress - finished
  5. Watson Bra - finished
  6. Wiksten Tank 2 - failed, but attempted before throwing in the towel!

I also practiced my spinning with some fiber from my stash.

Since my priorities are shifting with the seasonal change, along with my current break from design work, I've updated my Making List to reflect my focus for fall. 


  1. Lopi Pullover
  2. Fibre Co Stripey Raglan - this is a carryover WIP from the first list
  3. Charlemont Thermal - another carryover
Stripey Raglan vs Lopi Pullover

Stripey Raglan vs Lopi Pullover

I am hibernating my Miss Babs Cardigan design WIP for now, since it's not grabbing my attention. But it's there when I want it!


  1. Bonnie Banks Shawl for my mom, in Blue Moon BFL Sport
  2. Speckled Space Socks, using one of my stash sock yarns
  3. Impromptu - but only after finishing at least one garment from the WIP list!
Untitled design (10).png


  1. White British Wool - I destashed the yarn I was planning on using for the Brookdale Vest, which was originally in my last CO list. I'm hoping to spin this into a Brookdale-suitable yarn!
  2. Spun Right Round Merino
  3. Malabrigo Nube


  1. 2nd Watson Bra
  2. Flannel shirt for Mark
  3. Serger projects, if I can get over my fears and teach myself how to use my serger!

In addition to my original Making List 'rules', I have added these two for fall:

  1. Cast on for new items after finishing the previous object in that category. IE, finish a garment before casting on a new one; finish a portable accessory before casting on a new one. Same principle for starting spinning and sewing projects. 
  2. Use stash for everything possible. In this case, I had to purchase a second skein of BFL Sport for my mom's shawl (to go with one from my stash), and I'll need to buy fabric for Mark's flannel shirt. But everything else I have stashed!


My Making List

I recently discovered The Craft Sessions and fell down the rabbit hole of her Stash Less blog post series. Ever since I stopped working at Webs, my yarn consumerism has been way down and even before I left there, I was starting to be more mindful about my stash. I've done several purges of yarn, leaving me with a full yarn cabinet (rather than an overflowing one!) of prized skeins that I'd like to work though over the next few years. Coupled with my new budget, my eye is on using what I have and working on projects I've been pondering for awhile rather than heading off into new directions.

Thus, I decided to follow her challenge of creating a Making List. I'm leaving myself free to remove items from this list if I decide it no longer appeals to me, but if I want to add new things to the making list, I need to have completed something or removed something in its place. Note that this isn't my dreaming, wishful thinking list, but rather projects that I am committed to making because I already own the materials and in the case of some, they're already in progress. Designs for self-publishing are included, but contracted third-party obligations are not.


  1. Miss Babs cardigan (design in progress)
  2. Fibre Co Stripey Raglan
  3. Saturday Matinee Socks--a finished FO as of Sunday night! Currently blocking.
  4.  Rainbow Leyburn Socks
  5. Charlemont Thermal

The cardigan will be set aside shortly as I have a sweater design I need to start working on. #2 just needs sleeves! Items 3 through 5 are long-standing WIPs, and I'm excited to close those projects out. I am definitely going to finish the Leyburn Socks, but I might change my mind on the thermal and rip it instead--need to dig that one out and take a long, hard look at it!


  1. Brookdale Vest
  2. Lopi Pullover
  3. Anzula Ava Set (design idea)

I have the yarn for all three of these, and the patterns for 1 & 2 to boot!


  1. Romney fleece
  2. White British wool
  3. Spun Right Round fiber
  4. Malabrigo Nube.

Spinning is the most long-term of the categories, and I do need to get back into my spinning groove with some practice before tackling these fibers, especially the fleece. I'll likely do some practice spins with stash fiber I have expressly set aside for that purpose. In all honest, I'm not anticipating getting to spinning until the fall, or at least until I finish my current sewing list as that is more important to me.


  1. Fen Dress
  2. Watson Bra
  3. Wiksten Tank 2
  4. Serger projects

'Serger projects' in this case refers to the stash of knit fabric I have and any possible projects I want to do with it. I've been thinking of some jogger-style pants, pajama shorts for lounging around the house, and a casual tee or two. But first I need to learn how to use my serger!

Here are my tentative rules for the near future:

  1. Projects in the Making List take priority over random flights of fancy. (Exceptions: Any design obligations, duh.)
  2. $50/month budget for craft supplies. For now, I see that going to patterns and notions rather than yarn or fabric since I have a good stash to work from. I can roll any unspent $ over from month-to-month if I want to save up for something bigger than $50.
  3. If I'm avoiding a Making List project or not enjoying it--frog mercilessly, give away to a friend to finish, whatever, but no wasting time on things I don't love.

It may seem weird to put this much effort and structure into my hobbies, but I feel SO MUCH better for having done this. Getting my ideas out of my head and onto paper has cleared up brain space and made me decide what is actually a priority to me. I love having a good plan and I'm excited to get more crafting done the rest of this year! If you made a Making List, what would be on yours?

Yarn Porn: Chester Farms Pride of the Flock

One of the many perks of working in a yarn store is we all put our destashes up for grabs in the kitchen, which is how I wound up yesterday with 9 skeins of this:

Oh HELL yes! That beauty is Chester Farms Pride of the Flock. According to Ravelry it's discontinued, and Chester Farms rebranded to Cestari. It's made in the United States which is an extra bonus! I'm finding as time goes on, I am appreciating more and more these natural, woolly, old school yarns. Of course I still love me some hand dyed superwash, but this type of yarn just FEELS like sheep. I like sheep.

The label only gives the weight of the skeins, but if Ravelry's database is correct I have 1890 yards to play with in color Dark Opal. I'm thinking a gorgeous cabled textural oversized sweater from Brooklyn Tweed. Going clockwise from top left: Cordova, Larus, Stonecutter & Ondawa.

Fall sweater goals! Just got to finish my Tinder before I can allow myself to cast on for another selfish sweater project aka professional development.

Conquering Your Stash: Musings on Yarn, Organization & Letting Go

This article was originally published in Holla Knits Warm Weather Accessories 2015.

When I first got into knitting--really into knitting--I became obsessed with the idea of having a stash. Initially like most beginners, I bought yarn for one careful project at a time and knit monogamously on it until it was finished. Once I was introduced to this nebulous concept of stash, of having a yarn store within your house, of buying yarn willy-nilly with no empty needles waiting for it….that was my downfall.

Okay, so it’s not really that ominous! Having a stash is a fantastic tool to have at your disposal as a knitter, especially if you don’t have a LYS within easy distance or prefer to buy most of your yarn online. Stash is great for last-minute gift knits, swatching stitch patterns before committing to knitting a whole sweater in a p5tog pattern, and for queuing up your next project without having to shop for more yarn. As time went on though, I found my stash had become a proverbial ball and chain. My stash yarn guilt-tripped me from its storage bins and my tastes evolved, making a portion of it no longer appealing or useable. In becoming a designer, I now viewed my stash in new light; thus, the Great Stash Clean-Out was born.

The internet is buzzing about konmari, a cleaning and organizational technique developed by Marie Kondo. I’m not about to buy a book about cleaning (let’s be honest here!) but a quick Google search yielded the basic steps of the konmari method, the first of which involves dumping all of the items in question out on the floor so one can view the extent of the issue. Or maybe be shamed into cleaning their floors first, which is what I did. After a quick vacuuming, my 60-gallon storage tubs were unceremoniously upended and all scattered balls of yarn were rescued from their various nooks around the rest of the house. I looked at my stash in all its glory, organized it by color and weight for fun, took notes, and divided it into ‘yes’ and ‘heck no’ piles. The ‘heck no’ pile included partial balls I’ll never use--such as the leftovers from small knitting projects for ex-boyfriends, yikes!--and yarns in colors or fibers I’ve since discovered I’m not terribly fond of. (Cotton: I’m Just Not That Into You.)

A surprising trend that emerged was my apparent desire to buy yarn for the knitter I wish I was, not the knitter I actually am. I ooh-ed and ahh-ed over countless gorgeous fingering weight sweaters on Ravelry and in the process, somehow convinced myself that I was really, totally going to knit a bunch of fingering weight sweaters. I like knitting shawlettes and socks but don’t dedicate too much time to them, so the reasoning must have went something like this: “Oh, what gorgeous sock yarn! I don’t need new socks or a shawl though, so I know! I’ll buy 4 skeins instead and make a sweater!” (Repeat 4 more times, never actually knit said sweater.) This realization led me to make some guidelines for myself and my rejuvenated stash.

Above all else: be honest and don’t be afraid to let go. It’s only yarn and if it’s not bringing you joy, it’s not worth holding on to. As knitters we control our yarn, by knitting it into new shapes to create textures and beauty, and blocking finished objects into submission until they are just right. Don’t let your yarn control you!