Knitting monogamist or a project for every occasion?

So are you a knitting monogamist who sticks to one project until the bitter end or do you have two three four or more projects on the go at any one time? I’ve come across lots of different names for the latter group (some of them not that polite) but I like the term I heard from a local yarn shop owner – “WIPsters”.

It has been known for the monogamists to view WIPsters as disorganised or a bit flakey and for WIPsters to think of the monogamists as boring. So we thought it was time to take a look at the admirable qualities of both groups.

Here I should make a declaration of interest: I am not nor ever have been a knitting monogamist (except by accident when I’ve finished all but one project when travelling).

Knitting monogamists must be admired for their tenacity and determination. However difficult the pattern or no matter how many miles of stocking stitch are involved, they persevere through frogging or multiple progress checks (the type where you measure hopefully every few rows but it is never long enough) or even having to put their knitting down because the TV programme has got too exciting.

All of which means they must have a good eye for a great project – if you are going to only have one on the go, it needs to be something you’ll enjoy in all circumstances. Anyone stuck on choosing a new project might well be advised to seek the help of a knitting monogamist.

Knitting monogamists also have a great advantage over WIPsters – they are more likely to have finished items as opposed to piles of pieces needing the ends woven in, cardigans with single arms or orphaned socks. NB WIPsters have been known to argue that a single sock is a finished object in its own right.

A typical project pile for a WIPster

However, WIPsters also have their virtues, surprisingly for some the most prominent of these is being organised. You may think that having multiple projects is a sign of complete disorganisation but in fact each project requires its own project bag with tape measure and notions, patterns have to be wrangled and needles of all types must be available. So there is plenty of kit to keep track of.

It also means that a WIPster is exactly the right person when you need advice on sourcing project bags or need to borrow a stitch marker or a tape measure.

The WIPster’s organisational streak also emerges when you ask about all those projects. Many WIPsters have different projects for different circumstances. There will be the intarsia project that can’t be moved from the sofa for fear of tangling multiple balls of yarn; a small project for commuting; the complex lace project that needs total commitment; and some TV knitting ie something that doesn’t need a lot of concentration. Some knitters refer to TV knitting as “stitch n bitch knitting” or “pub knitting” because it is for when you want to think more about the chat than the needles.

WIPsters always have a plan – and a project.

What sort of knitter are you – and why? Tell us below.

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