Your Christmas knitting checklist

We don’t want you to panic, but with the schools starting back you might want to think about your Christmas knitting if you are planning to give hand-knitted or crocheted gifts this year.

It is certainly time to make a plan and decide if it is realistic – so ask yourself the following questions:

  1. How many gift do you plan to make?
  2. How big is each gift – a sweater or a hat? If you answered 20 to question one and now note that at least 10 of these are fair isle jumpers or granny square blankets for double beds, it is possible that you have a time problem. So…
  3. How much time per week do you have to knit?
  4. How long does it take you to make (including weaving in ends, sewing up, adding buttons, etc) a pair of socks, a hat, a laptop cosy and so on?
  5. How many of the projects are secret and what proportion of your time is “secret knitting time”? Does anyone else imagine themselves knitting in a wardrobe or broom cupboard to keep a present a surprise?

Now take a look at questions one, two and four to add up the amount of making time you require between now and the early hours of 25 December. Then look back at question three and ask yourself one final simple question – is the amount of knitting/crochet/finishing time available more than you need to complete your gift list? If not, it is time for a rethink now – not in mid December.

Christmas inspiration. Nordic sweater from James C Brett (jb193); Fun hats from Hayfield; Slouchy cable socks by Debbie Bliss (DB084); Kids sweaters in Stylecraft Life (9031); King Cole Christmas selection (8002); On trend Mermaid blankets by Wendy (6022)

Remember that although you might think of a knitted sweater to full circle shawl as a bigger gift, many not knitters will feel as loved receiving a beautiful soft scarf or a pair of snuggly socks. Choosing a luxurious yarn for a small project can also make it more special – so if you had originally budgeted for a sweater quantity of yarn you could think of a smaller project but up your spend per skein. It is also a good idea to purchase all your gift knitting yarn now so there is no delay between projects and so you can pick up something else if you hit a glitch with one item.

And finally while giving people handmade presents is a lovely thing, please remember that you should enjoy yourself too so try to avoid any 3am secret finishing session on the run up to the big day.

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