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2020 Knitting Goals Round Up

As most knitters can tell you, it’s really easy to get carried away with projects, to get side tracked with new yarn and new cast ons. It’s possible to do a lot of knitting and feel like you accomplished nothing! So for 2020 I set some knitting goals to keep me on track.

At the beginning of 2020, I wrote out my knitting goals for the year. It was actually one of my first posts on this knitting blog! Of course when I wrote this blog I had no idea the turn that 2020 would take… But despite being thrown for a loop by a global pandemic and seemingly endless months of lockdown – I made some good progress on my knitting goals!

Knitting goal 1: Colours

The colours that I wanted to knit with this year were one of my goals. This was because in 2019 I felt like a lot of my projects were really dark neutrals – there was A LOT of navy blue in 2019.

I wanted to use more bright colours because I really love bright pinks and teals and greens, but have never really brought them into my wardrobe.

I think I did pretty well with this goal. Here are some of my colourful projects from 2020.

Overlander Shawl

This was my Christmas Eve Cast on in 2019, but I didn’t finish it until mid-February. I absolutely love the colours I used a mini set from Holy Press Fibres for the contrast colours. The main colour is Mushroom on Artfil Belle which is a fingering sock yarn, and one of my favourites. I love the contrast of the bright colours and this gorgeous tonal great.

Sonya Tee

To say I am proud of this project would be an understatement! It was my most complicated stranded colourwork project (at the time I knit it – that title has possibly been claimed by my For Fox Sake).

I knit this in beautiful Sweet Georgia Yarns. I was hesitant about this colour combination, but I’m so glad I took the leap. and paired Magician and Peachy together.

This pattern was on my Ravelry queue for ages, I had a really hard time choosing colours. I knew I wanted to use Magician as the main colour, and I bought that yarn first while I made up my mind about the second colour.

I actually used a colour wheel to pick this contrast colour. I highly recommend using a colour wheel if you’re like me and bad at coming up with combinations. I think I almost used a creamy white instead of this peach!!

Pink Elefante

I am OBSESSED with this cute little elephant. I knit this one up for my best friend’s daughter (elephants are kind of our thing) and I am most certainly going to make one for myself!

Skywalker Socks

When I bought the yarn for my Sonya Tee I also picked up the beautiful sock yarn from Sweet Georgia with these socks by Tracie Millar in mind!

This variegated colour suits these socks so well.

Okay just ooooone more!

City Limits Sweater

I used a Hawthorne fade set from Knit Picks for this sweater and it took me a few tries to figure out the colours and the pace of the fade. I’m not 100% happy with the fit of this sweater, it’s too tight and too big in all the wrong places, and I ran out of yarn so the sleeves are an awkward length. But I love the colours!

And I used this light neutral colour for my Simone Pullover, which is totally out of my comfort zone and I loved how it turned out!

These last two sweaters are my biggest fails towards goal number 3…stashbusting…two new sweater quantities definitely weren’t in the plans for 2020…OH WELL!

You can read all the details for these projects on my Ravelry projects page.

Knitting goal 2: Scrappy projects

I have my Coziest Memories blanket to use up my fingering weight scraps. But one of my goals for 2020 was to knit some scrappy knitting projects that weren’t for fingering weight.

My success towards this goal has been so-so…

I knit the My Little Secret Crop by Jessie Maed Designs at the beginning of lockdown in March, actually I knit two of them. This was a really good project for scraps, but as I used fingering weight held together it didn’t quite meet my requirement of scrappy knitting projects that weren’t fingering weight.

My first My Little Secret Crop was also my first time fading and I loved how it turned out.

For my second My Little Secret Crop I used Nomadic Yarns self striping yarn held with some speckled Hawthorne fingering and it Love the way it turned out. This was a serious game of yarn chicken, by the end I had just a bit of the striping yarn left over.

I knit the Falling For You cowl by Leslie Alcock. It’s worsted weight and you just need a bit of each colour. It’s designed to be 4 colour blocks and that’s how I knit it, but for my next one I want to do smaller stripes of many colours and that will be perfect for using up worsted weight scraps.

This year, I sought out to solve my own problem when it came to having lots of super bulky scraps. I didn’t have enough of one colour to knit a whole hat so I designed this scrappy knit hat just a few days ago.

I have so many bits of super bulky yarn so I will definitely be making more of these knit hats in all sorts of colour combinations! You can find the free knitting pattern here.

Knitting goal 3: Stash busting

I had some great success with this goal. I knit 37 projects in 2020 and nearly all of them were using up yarn I already had in stash including several sweater quantities.

One of these is my Campside Cardi.

And this really cozy cardigan using Caron Latte Cakes, this yarn had been hanging around my house since 2018!

I have quite a bit of this fuzzy yarn leftover so I need to come up with something to make, I’m thinking a cozy cowl would be perfect!

And here’s how I failed:

Given I knit so many projects with yarn I had in my stash, I’m not sure I’d call it a failure, but I certainly bought more yarn this year than I wanted to…well than I planned to, because I certainly wanted to buy all of this yarn (and more)!

New yarn!

Outside of the yarn for my Simone Pullover and my City Limits, most of my new yarn came from the Great Toronto Yarn Hop – you can read about my haul from that event here.

Sweater quantity for the For Fox Sake sweater. Although in my defense…this was a pattern from my Ravely queue, so it’s a de-stash of my queue LOL.

And some sock yarn! The bubblegum pink is going to be a pair of Shag Carpet Shorites, I’ll hold the yarn double. I don’t have plans for the self striping skein yet…definitely socks though!

And I mean…how could I resist Eeyore inspired yarn from Campfiber yarns!

Yarn I didn’t use.

I also had some yarn that I really wanted to use this year as part of this goal and didn’t.

This pretty slub yarn from Hello Stella that I’m going to pair with some yarn from Legacy Fiber Artz to make a faded, slubby, Flax light.

An orange cat curled up on a comforter with a pink skein of yarn in front of it
This pretty skein from Hello Stella is one of my last yarn purchases of 2019

there’s some of the other pretty yarn I didn’t get to this year…somehow in all the knitting I did there is actually yarn I didn’t use! It’s almost unbelievable. However, I saw a moth the other day so most of it is packed up safe in vacuum bags and not fit to be photographed!

Knitting goal 4: Designing

The final goal I set was to design, and actually release, more of my knitting patterns. I have a tendency to design something and then lose the nerve to actually put it out into the world.

In 2020 I released six knitting patterns, many of them are free knitting patterns on this blog!

One of these six patterns is the Twister Mitts

Two hands wearing blue speckled knit fingerless mitts hold a mug of coffee

I’m pretty proud of my progress this year, but I did design two pairs of socks that never saw the light of day so I still have some work to do in this area.

You can check out all of my designs on Ravelry and browse the free knitting patterns on this blog.

Categories
Musings

Why Fall is the Best Season

Happy first day of Fall friends 🙂

If you’re here, you are probably a fan of the cozy life like me, you’re probably a knitter and Fall is probably your favourite season. Am I right?

If I am right, then you don’t need any convincing you can probably skip this one! Or enjoy my round up of all the best Fall things. But if you do need some convincing here is the official Knits of Steele list of proof that Fall is the best season. 

I did consider calling this post “The Official Knits of Steele List of Reasons Fall is the Best Season” but it seemed a little long for blog writing best practice…

The Weather

Listen, I’m a summer baby born in August and even I hate the heat! But freezing Winter, it’s not terrible but all that snow and slush…it gets a person down after a while. Spring is just a bit too wet and mushy with all the melt, and let’s face it no one likes finding all the trash that’s been hidden under snow for months, thawed out dog poop anyone? No thanks!

But Fall? Fall weather is just right, I’m like Goldilocks looking through the bear’s house, but with the seasons. And Fall is my version of Baby Bear’s bed. It’s just cool enough to cozy up in a sweater and a hat and blankets but it’s warm enough that you don’t need to bundle up until you resemble the abominable snowman. 

The leaves….of course

Ok so of course everyone’s favourite thing about Fall is the leaves and the colours. I’m just going to gloss on over this one because we all know it – but it had to be on the list. 

Thanksgiving 

I mean, a holiday dedicated to eating! Jk we all know the real meaning of Thanksgiving which is to be thankful and get together with family and then eating. But there is nothing like a nice turkey, (I mean I hate turkey, but I know I’ll get hate messages if I say ham so…) some creamy mashed potatoes, cranberry sauce, green beans and of course everyone’s favourite – pie! Gotta have both apple and pumpkin of course. 

Halloween

I love love love Halloween! I’m not much of a horror movie fan but for Halloween I’ll watch a couple. And a whole holiday about candy – count me in! 

Apple picking 

Fall is harvest season and a trip to the farm to pick apples is perfect! Put on some leggings and plaid and a nice knit hat and get some cute pics on the hay wagon. Pick some juicy apples and grab an apple pie on the way out – what’s not to love!?

There is so much more that makes Fall the best but this is my roundup of favourites. If this hasn’t convinced you I’m not sure what will – you’re a lost cause at this point!

Extra motivation

I don’t know if it’s the reminders of being a student going back to school, but September and the cool weather always make me feel extra motivated. 

For example my blog! I haven’t had much inspiration for the last month or so, but now I’m feeling really motivated to write blog posts and I’ve already pre-written a few for the coming weeks. So if you missed my regular updates don’t worry there is more Knits of Steele content coming your way in the months ahead.

Knitwear

I saved the best for last!

For knitters like me, #sweaterweather is obviously a huge reason why Fall is the best. But in addition to sweaters it’s also time to pull out hats, scarves, wool socks and amazing shawls.

Packing up my sweaters for the season at the end of Spring is like saying goodbye to old friends, but pulling them out again in Fall…it’s like a reunion! As soon as there’s a bit of chill in the air you’ll find me reaching for a knit sweater, even if it is still a bit too warm. 

I’m always the person to get weird looks on the train for wearing a hat before it’s even dropped into single digits…at least I was in pre-COVID times when I rode the train to work. 

What do you love about Fall? Or what’s your favourite season? Let me know in the comments!