How Were You A Fearless Knitter in 2008?

Did everyone have a joyous holiday, however you celebrated? Did you hug your family, eat lots of food, have a few hours of wonder and gratitude? Did you get cool knitting or crocheting or spinning stuff? Did you at least get a gift certificate so you can go to the yarn shop and buy yourself some nice yarn or needles or a knitting bag or even some nice books from Interweave? (hee hee)

And now, in three days, it will be 2009. Unbelieveable! 2008 will soon be behind us, so I thought it high time to ask you all a very important question:


How were you Fearless in 2008?

Remember that I started off the year challenging everyone to try something new in their crafting, to boldly go where no yarn-lover has gone before. So now I'd like to know what you did! Did you try cables for the first time? Did you learn to spin? Did you block something for the first time? Did you finally make a sweater that FITS?

Leave a comment. Heck send us a photo and when the holiday craze dies down a bit, maybe I can make a Fearless Gallery of what all you fab folks did this past year.

But Sandi–how were YOU fearless in 2008?

Oh, yeah. I guess it isn't fair to ask you to share your fearless feats and not tell you what mine were!

Color Wheel The big fear I conquered this year was my fear of Color. I have always thought of myself as Color Stupid, and avoided any Fair Isle pattern where I had to choose my own combinations as though it could give me a disease. Someone at work challenged me to face that fear, and in the process, I discovered Deb Menz and her stunning book Color Works. I was convinced that I was hopeless with color; Deb helped me become color-confident. The end result? I designed two separate Fair Isle swatches in two different colorways. And they don't suck. Hooray!

The other fear I faced was one so many of us carry around with us. I faced my fear of What I Look Like In Photos. Like so many women, I've grown up hating how I look in photographs, and not really wanting to have my picture out there. But in the process of posing for the Galleries, and in working with the fearless and gorgeous Gallery Gals, I learned so much about what looks good on me and what doesn't that now I am no longer squirrelly about getting my photo taken.

Heck, I'm even OK with being on TV. So when the Knitting Daily TV folks asked me if I would do some on-camera interviews with people for the You Asked It segments of Series 200 (coming to a public TV station near you January 18th!), I said yes–and then immediately went shopping for a cool on-camera outfit. My husband and I spent hours finding just the right clothing; I then went home and made myself a lovely necklace and earrings to match. I even bought new lipstick and new eye makeup.

Knitting Gallery - Manchester Jacket Sandi

I flew to Ohio, where the show was being taped…and the airline proceeded to lose my luggage, complete with Fancy TV Outfit and Makeup inside. For two entire days, they lost my luggage.

I had nothing to wear for two entire days–let alone on camera–but the rather frumpy outfit I had worn on the plane. Robyn Chachula saved the day for the TV taping by lending me a sweater from the Blueprint Crochet trunk show, and then–get this–Kim Werker DID MY MAKEUP FOR ME using her own cosmetic kit. (Now, THERE are some REAL friends for you.)

A year ago, I would have cringed with embarrassment over not having the perfect clothes and makeup for my big TV debut. This time, I just couldn't stop laughing about how funny the fates were being to make me Walk My Talk about wearing your clothes and not letting them wear you!


OK, now it's your turn. Tell us how you were a Fearless Knitter, a Fearless Crocheter, or a Fearless Spinner in 2008.

And by the way…thank you all for a wonderful, amazing year of knitting, yarn, and learning. Each and every day, I am grateful for each and every one of you. It is a privilege to share in your crafty lives each day.

— Sandi

 P.S. Do you want a Knitting Daily Fearless Knitter/Crocheter button for your blog? Sure you do!


Cool Knitting Daily Stuff!

Did you know you can buy Fearless Knitter/Fearless Crocheter tote bags, tee shirts, mugs and other nifty things in our Knitting Daily Cafe Press store? Yup. We have graphics with all kinds of variations on the Fearless theme, ready for you to display with pride!

Go take a look. (You know you want to.)


Sandi Wiseheart is the editor of Knitting Daily.

What's on Sandi's needles? Did I finish my mom's Leaf and Nupp Shawl from Knitted Lace of Estonia by Nancy Bush? I don't know. I'm writing this ahead of time so I can have Christmas off.  All will be revealed next year, I promise…



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420 thoughts on “How Were You A Fearless Knitter in 2008?

  1. I had many fearless knitting moments. First, I made the Tree of Life afghan for a friend’s son as a wedding gift. I actually finished it, and will give it during the holidays. I also learned Fair Isle and intarsia knitting. I am so proud of myself for taking on new challenges and succeeding! Now, in 2009, the first thing I am going to do is join a KAL for Aran sweaters. I guarantee it is the only way my DH will ever get his desired Aran sweater. I am also going to make really cool chullos for my family for their Winter Solstice gifts. I am starting early so that I am not all stressed out when the time comes to give them. Stress and gift giving are not a good combo! Happy New Year to all!!

  2. Hello

    My fear was cables. When see the designs and they are gorgeous, I say I know I cant do that. Well I did my first cable scarf and I am almost done. Oh I loved making this scarf and want to try my hand at cabled socks.

    I tried my hand at a beaded scarf and I am still practicing this one and getting the hang of it. Putting the beads on the yarn is the hardest part.

    I am trying my hand at tunisian crochet. I like the technique but I have to figure out why it curls up so much. So I have some research to do for this one.

    This year I want to learn how to work with multiple colors. I guess this is called fair isle. I love colorful things and why not make my own in the colors I want.

    I look forward to 2009 because there is so much I want to do.

    Happy New Year……

  3. I had been knitting “squares” for years. Comfort knitting, I called it. Mostly baby blankets in a checkerboard pattern. I retired and began knitting felted bags. I knit lots of felted bags. I got tired of it and wanted to knit outside of my comfort zone.

    I took a class. I knit lace! I learned new stitches. And I became fearless. I feel that can knit anything now.

    You can see my squares at cbdoesknit on Ravelry, boring right? Stay tuned.

    Carol B.

  4. Some of my fearless knitting involved my first baby items: a teddy bear, a blanket and a sweater. I dived into lace knitting in a big way in 2008, but only finished one lace project. I learned that sometimes it’s not the pattern or the knitter, but the *yarn* and frogged a lace project about 30% done—and unfortunately haven’t restarted it.

    But my greatest (IMHO) “fearless” moment was deciding to design a lace shawl for my mother and then knit it. I’ve completed the first of 5 sections and hope to return to seriously working on it, so I can complete it by the end of first quarter 2009. I still have to design a border for the shawl, so I should get back to work! I’d really like to finish this pattern, so I can finally offer it to others who’ve inquired about it!


  5. I learned to knit just this year and then after only three months, jumped straight in to knitting my own socks. I’m not very fast at it yet, but as long as I “schedule” time for my knitting (along with my other fiber crafts – spinning being the biggest), I know that I will improve.

    My goal for 2009 is to conquer cables. πŸ™‚

  6. I knitted a shawl! It was my biggest project yet, and my first real lace-type project (unless you count a little headband I did a while back!)

    I also not only knitted my first real sock (I did felted slippers and Christmas ornaments before 2008), but also learned how to do two at a time!!

    Those were my biggest accomplishments this year!

  7. I finally finished ONE sock!! And it’s mate is about 1/3 done and still being worked on. Now this may not sound so miraculous but this happened after 6 false starts! I was beginning to think that I would never learn how to do a heel. And I was so frustrated after falling in love with “Flat Feet”. I had to make socks, they called to me! Luckily, I am on my way to furnishing me and my hubby with lots of socks. I am happy now! πŸ˜‰
    Happy New Year to everyone! Martha S.

  8. I tried knitting socks with the magic loop method. I have always disliked anything that requires double points for more than a few rows. I can see many uses for the magic loop method. I have enjoyed your podcasts which have reminded me of other things to knit since we sometimes get stuck in what projects we do. ES

  9. I made my first sweater. And then made a second sweater (different pattern). The first was two small and the second too big, but I made them and I was happy about it. I also knit a bag specifically to felt it. I made the strap way too wide, but still I knit something for felting (without a pattern) and it fit my laptop PERFECTLY. I also knit an afghan for my friend’s wedding that I never would have attempted before. So thank you for inspiring us to be fearless in 2008.
    Julia M.

  10. I took a class on Elizabeth Zimmermann’s Baby Surprise Jacket and enjoyed it so much I convinced my knitting group to use it as a group project to donate. The first photo shows my second BSJ of 7, the second photo is our group project and the third photo is my second of three laceweight mohair Evelyn Clark leaf lace shawls which was my other fearless project of 2008.I thoroughly enjoyed stretching my brain cells with these knitting challenges and now feel I can do anything on which I set my mind!

  11. I did lots of fearless knitting this year. I knit my first fair isle hat and it came out pretty well, so I made a stocking for my daughter. I finally figured out how to work cables and not have them look crappy, heck, now I’m knitting a cabled afghan and I can do it without a cable needle! I finished my first official sweater with a zipper and pockets. It’s child size, but it counts, she’s getting a lot of use out of it. I learned to spin and am making gorgeous laceweight yarn on a spindle. I also got a spinning wheel and have made some nice singles and 2ply with it as well. I learned how to knit socks toe up and to work short row heels and made a pair of socks with my very own handspun yarn. I also learned to weave and have made several projects on my 3 looms, one of which is a large floor loom. Oh yeah, I started my first laceweight project as well. It was a year of much fearless knitting and I feel very good about all I’ve accomplished. I definitely don’t feel like the beginner I felt at the start of the year.

  12. For a long time I was a hat and scarf knitter only. I swore I would be fearless this year and conquer my fear of not being “good enough” to try new techniques. Since then, I’ve knit multiple pairs of socks, several sweaters, learned how to cable, graft and pick up dropped stitches. I’ve also learned short row shaping and how to do several types of increases and decreases. My favorite item so far? Felted moccasins from Fiber Trends – they came out beautifully!! Next up I’m tackling lace! Yeah for me!!! I am fearless indeed! BTW, you can see some of my stuff at mynewleaf on Ravelry.

  13. I started knitting this year!! My first project was a pair of socks. Then I ventured to an entralec sweater. It took 1st at the county fair. I had crocheted Easter dresses for my 3 daughters and myself in the New Year. To finish out the year I started to spin. I have about 3 skeins done and ready to be made into gloves. I had a great fearless 2008 and can’t wait for 2009 projects.

  14. I made hats for all of my in-laws (well, the women anyway) and didn’t worry about how they’d be received. I did a braided cable for the first time. I knit several dresses for my daughter! I traded yarn on Ravelry (okay, I know that one doesn’t really count, but it worked).

  15. I am new here! I think this will be a great site for me – encouraging me to be FEARLESS is a challenge I like! I was fearless near the end of the year. I tried CABLES for the first time EVER!! WOW!! What power. I even signed up for an Aran afghan class – 24 blocks over 2 years of time – should be adequate but I’m sure I’ll need every minute of knitting time I can get to learn MORE patterns and to PRACTICE them! I am KNITTER hear me ROAR – I’m fearless!

  16. 2008 was the year of lace! I figured out how to read complicated charts and used lace weight yarns for first time. Scared myself frogging this stuff and tested my patience keeping track of place. In the end I made 4 shawls – two of them even had beads. One I gave my daughter for her wedding this summer. ravelry – katomliz

  17. I successfully knitted and felted 3 pairs of Bev Galeskas’ felted clogs. The knitting part wasn’t so hard, it was the felting part that had me worried. I finally just took the “plunge” and went for it! All three turned out wonderfully and the recipients really like them!!! I also took my turn at a little designing – I found a slip stitch pattern I really liked and designed and knit 2 little purses. They are currently in the process of being felted and finished up. Unfortunately, I did not get around to trying needle-felting as I wanted to, but I will attempt in 2009. Thanks for encouraging us to face our fears!

  18. Finally after decades of avoiding small circular projects I learned to knit in the round on two circular needles. What a revelation!! Now I’m cranking out caps for preemies like it’s my job, and I’m considering reknitting the first sweater I ever made, a Norwegian snowflake done in the round. The sleeves wound up looking like they had four ladders, but I wore it anyway.

  19. My fearless was a sweater with cables and fair isle. Oh yes and it was also skeeted. While working on my first cable project the yarn shop lady talked me into it. I have always knitted single color because i was afraid of fair isle but I had a lot of fun with this one. The most terrifying part was the first cut, I was afraid all my work would unravel but to my surprise and delight it work and looks wonderful.

  20. I was fearless when I tackled the Brioche rib… the round. I love tackling new technique in either colorwork or pattern. It was my passion when I began knitting as an adult over 14 years ago to learn lacework but chart reading seemed impossible. SO in addition I tried my hand at reading a tiny stich chart for making a Lacey scarf. My goal is to learn to complete lace doilies as read from charted instructions.
    My passion has turned into an obsession while I have a few more minutes of personal time over the holidays. But how is that different really from sports lovers and football, I ask you?

  21. I really loved that you challenged us to be fearless knitters. I didn’t take on as many challenges as I had originally planned but I did learn to knit lace and read a chart.

    I have a project I want to be fearless about but haven’t arrived there yet. I started a vest but changed the pattern. I set it aside when I got busy and haven’t gone back to it. I hate to frog it since I have so much work into it. I guess it can be my fearless knitting project for 2009.

    Sandi thank you for inspiring and challenging me over the past year and for your wonderful emails.

  22. I tried it!!! I knitted a vest from the Twisted Sisters book, side to side knitting. The pattern was a challenge, but I did it!! I learned a lot about myself, my body shape, yarn choice and color all on this one project. I think I will be more careful next time in choosing yarn that fits my body. I get over-anxious about getting something done and miss some of the important things, like measure your armholes! Mine got too deep and you could put my husband and me in, so I had to improvise and luckily the yarn was multicolored and very forgiving so I could add patches under the arms. I really learned that good measurement is the key before you start anything!!! Fritzie

  23. I had started up knitting again a couple years ago. I always figured I was ‘fearless knitting’ by trying new knitting techniques and making pieces of sweaters…. Blocking and seaming were not high on my list of ‘new things I wanted to try’. Thanks to the Fearless Knitting challenge – not only did I actually block all my (old and new) projects, I seamed as well and love it! Thanks for the Fearless Challenge. Oh, I also joined Ravelry, but I guess that might be my new challenge this year – will learn to post photos and fill in the blanks….

  24. I became a fearless CROCHETER! I’ve always wanted to learn thread crochet, but it feels so different in hand–no give or stretch at all! I started out by working up a doily in a thicker thread than the instructions called for. My “giant doily” turned out beautiful and is a perfect centerpiece on the table. Since then, I’ve worked a couple of edgings for tee shirts in thread, and started a new table topper! There are so many wonderful patterns out there for thread crochet! I’ve added another dimension to my favorite hobby! By the way, I love Knitting Daily!

  25. First, I fearlessly got rid of all the yarn in my stash that I knew I’d never use and donated it to somebody who would actually use it.

    Then, I dove in and tried all sorts of new things: my first knitting in the round on DPNs yielded mittens, then several pairs of gloves, baby sweaters, cables WITHOUT needles!!, and I’ve ended the year having great fun designing my own mitten patterns for friends who have begun jockeying for position to be the next recipient of “whatever is in your pocket” -everywhere I go there is a ball of yarn in my pocket and something on my needles. I even knit a few items for myself. Next year – an entire sweater just for me!

  26. I’m really proud of myself, because this year I went up and beyond what I’ve ever done, by making a huge coat out of a whole sheep fleece I washed, carded, spun, and crocheted. Now, it had it’s problems, but it’s the most beautiful thing I’ve ever laid eyes on, and it’s a treasure in my wardrobe. I’ve also conquered my fear of being rejected at a magazine, so editors, you can reject, and I won’t loose my mojo! (well, I may be a little disapointed, but no bawling!)

  27. I started knitting again this year after a long layoff. I learned to knit socks and cables. However, my biggest accomlishment was writing my own pattern. I made a shrug for my grandaughter.

  28. Well, I purchased mohair yarn for a sweater project. The way that you have frog that yarn makes me fear-ful, but I am going to plunge in fearlessly. I also joined Ravelry and have promised to teach some different techniques to some friends. I didn’t stress out over Christmas gifts and was happy with what I actually finished and gifted. For 2009, I am attacking a whole new craft organization agenda and plan on doing some quilting. Marg

  29. I am ashamed to admit that although I have been knitting for 45 years, I have never been a fearless knitter. I stick to the basics. I think that I need to push myself harder to learn something new. I might try a top down sweater for a child.

  30. I just learned how to knit this past year. I jumped right into fair Isle, and I designed my own knitted bracelets on Ravelry. I also taught myself how to weave on a inkle loom my husband built. There are only so many days in a year, so this year I want to knit socks, sweater, cables, and learn how to spin. I would love to post a picture. Where can I send one?

  31. I made a pair of fingerless gloves with half fingers, so just my fingertips are exposed. I keep the scorebook for our local high school baseball team, and here in WV it’s still cold during most of the spring baseball season, NowI can write and still keep my hands and fingers warm! Not the physically largest project I’ve ever done, but it was my first (but certainly not my last) pair of gloves. Much fun showing them off at work, too! Made me feel like a big deal.

  32. I’ve been knitting like crazy almost every day of this year, I’ve made sweaters, socks, hats, dresses, mittens, blankets, doilies and dolls clothes. Happy New Knitting Year from Iceland

  33. I knit celtic cables [Celtic Tote] for the first time. I also finished
    all my UFO’s – one that I started 4 years ago. And I knit my
    first top-down sweater for myself. Finished it last night.

  34. I started and finished my first Real Project in two colors – the Selbu modern. It is shown in my blog
    But I was a rather safe knitter in 2008 compared to what I have been in the past. In 2005 I decided to learn how to knit. It was a Tuesday afternoon in July. I went to the store and bought needles and yarn that didn’t fit at all with the shawl pattern I had chosen. I dove into a lace pattern in English (I am Swedish) deciphering it stitch by stitch and made a woolen blanket… Leaf pattern and all. That’s how I learn. Some call it daring – I call it learning how to swim by falling into the ocean…

  35. My fearless feat was trying socks! i have knit one after three starts and am working on its mate. I also did two shawls, one of which was a simple lace pattern and blocked a piece for the first time. In the new year I intend to finish a sweater I have mostly done, knit Christmas stockings for DH and I, and continue to develop my skills.

  36. I haven’t been all that fearless – rather stuck to the known (socks, kiddy sweaters) since I also donated some of my products to a church fair. I got a beautiful new trunk for my wool for christmas – packing it gave me plenty of plans and ideas. For this year I want to try norwegian patterns where you knit in a round and then cut it open to make a cardigan. Has anybody got some experience with that? The idea is as appealing as it is scary!

  37. I finally (gulp) knitted a pair of socks. I am now on my 3rd pair. First two were for me . I’m hooked. I’m trading dishcloth yarn for sock yarn. I met these great knitters at Barnes & Noble and they invited me to join them and knit. (I always have a knitting project with me)They were all knitting socks and got me started. I love knitting socks!!!

  38. My big fearless moments during the year were learning to spin! I got a wheel for Christmas 2007 (I love my awesome family!) and proceeded to spend 2008 teaching myself, mostly through experimentation, how to spin and ply. Got the wheel in December, hooked it up in January, and by late March/early April I had spun 10 oz. of yarn for a short-sleeve, top down raglan sweater. By May, the sweater was finished. My first sweater designed entirely by myself as well! I continue to knit with yarn I’ve spun, especially as my spinning slowly improves!

  39. I did my second colorwork project (last one was fifteen years ago and I hated it- tension problems, the yarn kept getting tangled, and it took forever.) This time, having read about two-handed technique, I taught it to myself, and then did a sweater in just five weeks! (Totally addictive!). And not only was it colorwork, but I designed it myself using a formula rather than knitting from a pattern. And then I tried other colorwork projects and finished by doing colorwork mitts in fingering weight yarn for Christmas!
    Here’s the sweater:
    And the mitts (Eunny Jang’s Endpaper mitts, somewhat modified):

  40. I’ve stepped out into “color changes” in a couple of really cute baby hats. Even getting REALLY “squirrely” and making up my own color patterning as I went along with one! Such fun. Learning that the sky is the limit. Then made a fun dog sweater for my grandson’s dog in Army camo colored yarn and put a red patch pocket on the back of it. Grandson thought it was hysterical. Happy New Year to ALL!!

  41. I think I’ve always knitted fearless… and 2008 was just another year. I like to have my winter projects end just as the new year is beginning… that way I start the year as a success… this keeps the motivation high and the projects just keep rolling out. I finished a coat in January and this year I’m knitting the cover sweater on the 2008 winter issue… I’ll finish this weekend. My goal this year is to slow down (don’t want the bulging disk problem to return) and to knit from the stash. And of course be a more avid travel knitter. Happy New Year!

  42. I’ve learned entrelac, knitted patchwork and stranded knitting. I’ve knitted my first toe-up socks and sideway socks, top-down seamless yoke pullover and top-down raglan coat (again, mostly seamless). I invented cascade heel with no gusset, suitable both for cuff-down and toe-up socks. I tried to crochet in motifs without cutting yarn and realized how to convert almost every motif into uncutted — I love the technique itself but still hate crochetting.
    And I’ve started to design garments in DesignaKnit program for machine knitting.

  43. I tried a crocheted provisional cast-on for the first time, resulting in a beautiful picot edging to a bamboo vest and I did my first felting. Many bags later, I am still being asked to make “just one more” for family & friends and it feels great.

    I also tried socks … and decided they weren’t for me. And, I made peace with myself for frogging something that I know I wont wear, even though I may have spent many hours making it; progress indeed!

    Well done to everyone who tried something new this year, conquered their fears and proved, hey, you can do it :O) I’m proud of you all.

  44. I was fearless this year when I joined a lace stole KAL that also had beading! I am no longer afraid of lace or beading and actually I’m now hooked on it. I also made socks and learned magic loop. So, I’ve conquered 3 of my knitting fears this year and in 2009, I will make a sweater that fits, to conquer the fears of swatching, gauge and math!

  45. I got two Interweave books, learned two-sided cables, learned how to scavenge yarn from a sweater, learned color weave fair isle, how to mobius, and various other things. Plus, I finally buckled down and started writing down some of my patterns that I’ve been creating for years, and posting them on my brand new blog:
    (but there won’t be very many things up yet. It’s brand new. Please comment for me, though, it’s very much a work in progress and I need all the help I can get! But I’m very proud I’m finally overcoming my fear of writing down my improvised patterns!)

  46. I’m SPINNING!… may not be beautiful yet, but it sure is relaxing! And me, who hates to stick my hands into anything really dirty, skirted (I think that is the correct phrase!) and washed my own fleece…..I actually had fun doing it….I can’t wait to card and spin it! I’ve set out to try learn at least one new thing about knitting (or crocheting) a month, whether it is a helpful hint, a new stitch or some new product that is hitting the knitting market. It is rewarding….my December learning was from Elizabeth Zimmeman regarding jogless knitting in the round…..WOW, so easy and no one ever mentioned it!…I’ve also dyed yarn using Kool-aid….may not be the most scientific, but It was FUN FUN FUN and next year I may have my grandchildren dye the yarn for their own hats!

  47. I learned to spin on a drop spindle from a wonderful women in St. Mary’s Co., Md….I got my roving from her own sheep that she keeps and shears herself! I also learned to knit from a dear friend…having been a crocheter all my life I now have two more skills and just love both!!!

  48. What DIDN’T I do for the first time in ’08? My first sweater. My first fair-isle colorwork. My first time helping to organize an event on Ravelry involving a heart-stopping number of participants and volunteers (the Ravelympics). I’ve always been helped to be fearless by my inability to say no — maybe it balances out my inherent risk-aversion! This year I’ll take a cue from my friend the Secret Knitter and design something for the very first time … although the thought makes me weak in the knees …

  49. This year I finally made my first pair of socks! They fit and I love them. I am currently making a baby blanket using enterlac and unusual by lovely colors. I actually love enterlac and I always thought I would hate picking up all those stitches! Now I love not having to seam all the seams.

    My biggest challenge is the high school group of 11 kids who I am teaching to knit and they are starting by make a hat for Save the Children’s Save One Knit One. Then I am assisting in the projects of their choice! The hat project is a big hit with the kids.

  50. I was fearless this year when I designed, and made, a coat in Red Heart shades of purple. It’s a full length winter coat with a high, stand up neck. I’ve had a few comments when I wear it, as I’m nowhere near as slim as I used to be, but I will be wearing it again!

    When it comes to colour, I look to nature. Can you think of a colour that you haven’t seen in a flower? Are all of the stalks, stems and trunks in one colour? If nature can provide a colour match, it has to bo good, right?


  51. I stuck to my plan from last year’s “fearless” question, and I have been knitting without patterns, making up as I go. The best freestyle project for me this year was a top-down hooded raglan cardigan with big front pockets, and sleeves that extend over the hands with thumbholes… no seams to sew, and no blocking needed!

  52. This year I finally made cables! It was so easy, I don’t know why i was afraid. My goal for this year is to learn to knit socks. If everyone elase can do it so can I. I also really need to finish my projects better. Somehow watching a video or photos is not working for me so I’m going to a local yarn store so the “ladies’ can help me.

  53. I was successful in my Level I submission to the Knitting Guild’s master knitter program! Now I am embarking on level II. It is scarey to have other people judge your knitting but very rewarding when you receive approval.
    Blogless MaryLou

  54. I definitely tried some things in 2008 that I thought that I would never ever do.

    I was always an avid crocheter, crocheted on and off for 30 yrs, taught beginning-intermediate crochet classes and dabbled in so crochet designs of my own and was just… comfortable and “safe”.

    I picked up knitting about 11 years ago, but never got past the beginner stages, casting on was a bit of an issue and casting of definitely more of an issue, that is until this year. A year ago this month, I began to hang out with a big group of wonderful ladies who all knit and crochet. I watched the knitters produce beautiful pairs of socks and lace shawl that I have told myself over the years that I would never do, because I was terrible at knitting and everything just looked so complicated and I was very intimidated by the knit patterns. Nothing like being self defeated before even trying.

    But then, with all of the wonderful support of the ladies in the group, I started my first sock this year (they told me that I had no proper excuses and “enabled” me by actually giving me a set of needles and 2 balls of sock yarn to start me out) and I quickly became addicted to handknit socks! I even tested and knit up a sample pair of socks for a professional designer friend of mine to be published. I can now safely say that I have joined in the ranks of the sock knitter addicts!

    Thennn, just last weekend, with the help of another lady from the group, I overcome my fear of Lace knitting! She taught me how to read the charts and when over some of the special stitches with me, then once I found my fingers with yarn that felt so much more delicate to me than size 30 crochet cotton does (Merino lace weight), I conquered the 1st 40 rows of a lace shawl.

    2008 was definitely a year of overcoming my knitting fears and advancing my skills πŸ™‚

    Unfortunately, no photos as of yet.

  55. Toni,
    I tryed knitting again. I have always given it up because of not being able to pick up dropped stitches. I watched a couple internet videos and learned how to pick them up and also to use a lifeline. Now I am on my way. I want to knit because I have found out by accident that things made in knit are softer than things in crochet. I am going to make me a bath towel, stockings, and a lace shawl.

  56. I was fearless. Got hooked from the TV show and logged on to the website. Downloaded several free patterns. Knitted a beautiful knitting bag (could be a purse if knitting needles hadn’t been used). Knitted my first sock, the tiny one which was to be used for a Christmas decoration. Hope to knit a pair of full size socks in 09. And, yes, I learned to work a cable and made a purse (free download), but couldn’t follow the directions for the flap–so I made my own! And the cable on the flap matched the cable on the purse (centered in the correct position). Someone must have been helping me! I was so excited!
    Thank you for all the free downloads and the websites where yarn can be purchased. I bought some beautiful yarn and more needles (double pointed for those socks I want to knit). Happy New Year!

  57. Well, I not only learned to knit in July – teaching myself .. but I also completed several projects with different techniques … knitting and purling, lace work, cables without a cable needle, working in the round both on circulars and dpns, and using a magic loop method .. combined using a cirular and dpns at the same time, increasing and decreasing .. so definitely a very adventurous year for me in knitting!

  58. Fearless Frogging. When I have a sneaking suspicion things are not going right, but I don’t want to frog all that work (all those hours!), I’m learning to Fear Not the Frogging and just do it. I’m always happier afterwards. This is tough for me and I’m still working on it!

  59. I finally conquered my fear of cables!! With the help of a good friend and some bamboo cable needles (the plastic ones were what scared me off in the first place!), I made a lovely hat with a cabled band…yeah for me. Next I will tackle a cabled scarf and from there….the sky’s the limit….

    Happy New Year to All

  60. I came back to knitting after a stop of some 20 years… and to make it funniest, I tried a lace scarf from Victorian Lace Today… It was a real adventure!! If ever some read French, you can read my miseries and success on my blog .

  61. Oh Sandy,
    2007 was a year of adjustment for me. In January 2007 I lost my left eye to cancer. By January of 2008 I was feeling very, very blue. I felt that my life had become more and more limited because of the vision problems. I would be the first to tell you that two eyes really are better than one.

    I had not knit anything in years, but in January 2008 I finally worked up the courage to pick up some needles and see if I could actually knit again. Here it is a year later, and I have actually started and finished 22 knitted projects. I’ve knit socks for the first time. I’ve knitted my first baby sweaters. I’ve even tried my hand at knitting a few lace type stitches. I’m learning to read charted patterns. I’ve knitted with wool for the first time, and have successfully felted some projects for the first time this year. There is something magical about felting. I love it.

    Am I a fearless knitter? Yes! Yes! Yes! My mental and emotional outlook is so much better today than it was a year ago. I have lots of projects planned for 2009.

  62. This is going to sound funny, but I made a jacket out of basic stocking st and rib that only has three pieces that need to be sewn together (the Paris Jacket from the Knit Knit book). The fearless part? All the success lies in the sewing-together. I’m very comfy with shaped pieces with patterning in them, because the whole thing fits together like a jigsaw puzzle and makes it easy to do a nice finishing job. This jacket is made out of rectangles that need to be partially seamed, gathered, measured… it’s like making the pieces for a sewing pattern and then assembling them correctly. Even though it’s just stocking st and rib, even though I’m usually pretty consistent about those, it feels weird being so minimalist.

  63. Fair Isle. After finally reading ALL the instructions and washing and blocking correctly, I ended up with a hat I wasn’t embarrassed to give as a gift. Now I want to try the mittens to match.

  64. I have always wanted to knit lace and I did three shawls this past year and have several on the needles. It taught me how to knit loosely (or at least relaxed) as I am the TIGHTEST knitter ever. It improved my overall gauge and my tension for knitting and I have three beautiful shawls to show for it!!

  65. I was fearless! I tackled more complicated patterns, designed a few of my own patterns, and I learned to do entrelac, including purling backwards! I didn’t love the outcome of everything I knitted, but it was all a learning experience that has made me a better knitter!

    Every day I look at my “fearless knitter 2008” button on my blog and hope you’ll have one for next year, too! Having that little visual reminder was an encouragment to keep trying new things!

  66. I am always trying to learn new things, but two stand out for this year: I learned left-handers can do the Kitchener stitch from the left side of the knitting–and now I can do it without a problem! And I also converted a pattern with several bind-offs at the shoulders to short rows, and love the result.

  67. I was more productive and fearless in 2008 than I ever have been in the 40+ years I have been knitting and crocheting. Part of that is because of Ravelry (I’m Yarno) and the numerous creative possibilities it opened up for me. The other reason is because I went from being someone who knitted and crocheted alone to a regular at the table of my LYS, Ancient Pathways. The camaraderie and support I receive at the shop encouraged me to try new things.

    So, in 2008 I learned how to: finally make socks, felt, make purses, do intarsia, and numerous other techniques. The most amazing project for me was the Felted Floral Bag by Nicky Epstein (see photos at, which allowed me to learn the intricacies of intarsia and color work. I was so thrilled with how the bag turned out, that I want to do more of that type of project. Now, I have a bunch of intarsia patterns in my queue of projects β€œto do” in 2009!

  68. First off, a note to Sandi. You look like a real person…you have a great face, full of personality, humor and intelligence. So don’t worry about the pictures.

    In 2008, I took up spinning. Bought a wheel after 20 years of coveting one, and began churning out yarn. It soon dawned on me that, with no space to set up my loom, I was in danger of being found smothered under a yarn avalanche in the not-too-distant future. So, I took up knitting. Biggest surprise? The great community of knitters on the internet. Truly a joy.

  69. I learned to knit in November. I made a scarf. My second project was socks! I felt pretty good about that. However, the biggest thing i found out was that I had previously learned how to knit upside down … last weekend I learned to knit right side up. That was hard to unlearn a bad habit! I did it!

  70. It was a year of firsts for me. I knit my first sweater, felted my first object, tried socks on circs, and did my first cable. All-in-all a great experience that has taught me that I can try anything, and if it doesn’t work try again πŸ™‚

  71. Thanks for a great year, Sandi! This year I did entrelac, two handed (two-colored) Fair Isle, beaded lace, and some really complicated cables. I am determined to conquer socks in 2009!

  72. In 2008 I decided to take a few classes at my LYS to learn about things I had been “afraid” to try. It started with Entrelac and I knit a beautiful Malabrigo scarf using blues in Entrelac. Then I moved on to learn about Pinwheel sweaters and made one for my dd and her stuffed monkey–too cute! And so easy, what was I worried about?. In between classes i tried a few things on my own such as a pair of socks for myself and designing handwarmers….And my final fearless project for 2008 is a Top Down Cardigan sweater for my Plus-size self. I have been worried I wouldn’t be able to make something lovely for me now that I have had children and added weight. I may not finish it by the end of this year, but I am doing quite well with it thanks to CarlaK’s help. Soon I will have a gorgeous sweater just for myself–another fear conquered. I am sure I am like most knitters and crocheters in that I make items for everyone else. This year my DH said he wanted to see me make things for me. It was a challenge and items for others popped up here and there, but I stuck to my guns, strapped on a little courage, strengthened my confidence and faced my fears. Thanks for the challenge. This year I want to conquer LACE Shawls. πŸ™‚

  73. With the help of my 9 year old son, I conquered two knitting fears last month. 1) my hats never come out good, so I shy away from knitting them, and 2) I am really dependent on patterns and have wanted to move towards creating my own designs. My son saw a cable stitch he liked in a stitch dictionary, and asked me to make him a hat. With some trepidation, I set out to fulfill his request. It came out great – we are both happy! I’m now eager to try designing some other projects, with the goal of eventually working up to knitting a sweater that fits!

  74. I finally got over my fear of cables and knit a whole cabled sweater! I also learned how to block my knitting (such a difference!) and learned the magic loop method. I’ve become a knitting in the round fan! I also knit a sweater for my husband, which is the whole reason why I learned to knit in the first place!

  75. I learned to spin in August, and just before Christmas I completed a sweater I made with my own handspun. I also knit lace for the first time, as well as tackling socks–I now have three pairs and one on the needles. I no longer have ANY knitting fears!

  76. I learned how to “knit one below” WITH CABLES at Stitches East from Elise Duvekot. Elise is such a wonderful teacher, really there was nothing to fear. Now I’m merrily creating color columns and adding cables whenever I fancy.

    My biggest fearless knitting triumph was a successful PAID teaching gig, teaching a rightie to knit. I am a left-handed knitter (yup, everything in reverse!) and have been practicing right-handed knitting for a few years so I could teach right-handed students, even giving freebie lessons to friends. In 2008, I proved I was ready for prime time and took on a private knitting student, who loved every minute of her lessons! Now I can take on all new students, no matter what their handedness (and can even teach lefties how they can adapt knitting “forwards” so they don’t have to do all the reversing of instructions that I’ve done — and don’t even think about since I was 8).

  77. WOW! Sandi, that lavender coat looks fabulous on you!

    Well, being unemployed had its perks: I finally finished a pair of socks!!!! Woo-hooo! The first pair since high school (70’s). Then I knit another pair! To felt (on purpose) for house slippers. I made my daughter (the Halloween toilet) 2 different cardigans, without patterns!!! (a huge first for me), a hooded pullover for my son, an intricate thread-crochet runner for my niece, 5 pairs of wristies, etc. – all in all about 20 FOs.

    As I have serious ADD, I am quite proud of all of those FOs, especially the socks! And I’m finally designing – a swing coat for a dear friend, that will have brioche stitch panels on the front.

  78. I tried lace and after 50 years of knitting fell in love all over again and then was able to buy some fabulous lace yarn in Florence, Italy Beatrice whose shop overlooks the bridge and the river. Wow. What a knitting year I had!

  79. I, too, learned to knit socks on circs, and then discovered Entrelac knitting. After 50 plus years of knitting, I learned that there are still things I do not know, so I will learn ‘;em all–and WILL NOT fail!
    Patience DOES pay off!.,Now I carry these small projects with me wherever I go, while the larger ones, not ignored, are at home by my chair.

  80. I started knitting with recycled materials, I’ve been cutting the shopping bags and using them for different things, I made a coozy for soda or water bottles and a dishcloth with the bags knit in make it more scrubby
    I also finished 650 pair of mittens, a personal record and went on TV to talk about my mitten project.
    In 2009 I’m aiming for 850 pair of mittens

  81. I taught myself how to knit this year, so that for me was my first act of fearless knitting! Within a few months, I learned how to cable and began working on the Tree of Life afghan. I’m totally afraid to knit a sweater because the patterns are so complicated but I’m going to do one. My first sweater will be the Susie Hoodie and I’ve got all the yarn stocked up and waiting for me! I can’t wait. Socks, too. That’s another thing I fear – and will be attempting in the near future!

  82. I was able to design and knit a sweater for my daughter, frogged another sweater and felted for the first time. I had purchased/ordered yarn early this summer for a number of new projects to finish by Christmas. Then my husband passed away unexpectedly in August. I unfortunately had to put most of my knitting on hold because our household was turned upside down. I decided that I had to become to learn to live fearlessly in order to guarantee that my son and I would have a place to live and be able to continue our lives in a comfortable and less harried manner. Now that circumstances have settled some what I am looking forward to starting my knitting projects that were put on hold.

  83. I always thought knitting socks was like using tooth picks and dental floss. Like I could never finish. I now have not only tried it, I have made a dozen pairs and believe me they match. I also used self stripping yarn and the stripes match. I don’t think I will try toe up, top down works so well for me, I will stick to that. I am so proud of me. I am a fairly new knitter. This New Year, I want to learn lace. Yeah, I said lace. Only to prove you CAN teach old dogs new tricks.

  84. I was fearless in two ways…I tore apart a sweater I made the previous year but would never wear because the style was al wrong for me. I then reknit it into a sweater I actually now wear quite often (in the past I would have simply donated the sweater to Goodwill!).
    I also learned “two-handed fairisle” knitting. Now I am not afraid of fairisle as my work never puckers and I never tangle my yarns.
    Hooray for a great year!!!


  85. Here’s what I did. I tackled a lace circular shawl…and finished it! Here’s the photo:
    Rona Shawl1
    I also decided (sometime in the summer) that I wanted to learn to spin. I tried the drop spindle, but was very clumsy. I decided to take a big leap of faith and purchase a spinning wheel. What a surprise, though, when my knitting friends conspired with my son and other relatives to buy me one for Christmas/birthday. They presented it to me during our knitting meeting the end of october. The spinning is going well. See this:
    Skein3 in process
    Fiber fun should be part of everyone’s day! –Peggy

  86. Earlier this year I took on someone’s abandoned project, she didn’t know which row she left off or what stitch combination. I had never done a yarn over and this was a lacy baby blanket. Needless to say I didn’t choose the right row but once I knitted after her knitting the rows layed perfect and were right on. It’s great to have a baby blanket with two stories to tell.

  87. I’d always wanted to knit with beads, so i went for it. I knit a wool top with beads where I used a crochet hook to add the beads as I progressed through the work. Then I knit a pair of arm warmers where I had to string the beads on the yarn before starting the pattern. Pictures are on Flickr at:
    I’m revved up for 2009!

  88. I knit a sweater for myself, bottom up, in the round ,with the sleeves knit in the round and added in and a round yoke . . . in entrelac! Unfortunately I used cheap Sean Sheep Armytage from Wal-Mart so it won’t wear well but it fits the way I like (generously) and I get admiring comments every time I wear it. The variegation which makes unattractive stripes in my previous experience works amazingly well in the entrelac. I also knit two bags (a “Rugged Messenger Bag” and another of myt own design, felted them and added embellishment with my new Baby Loc needle felting machine.

  89. I learned how to make socks on an antique circular sock machine! I’ve made more than 40 pairs of socks this year, and I hope to at least double that next year. I enjoy it so much that I now own 3 sock machines.

    I also successfully knit my first sweater for me earier in the year (not the first I’ve attempted though) and I’m closing completion of my second sweater, which I hope to accomplish before the year closes.

  90. In anticipation of doing some color stranded knitting and with a desire to improve my speed I changed my knitting style from English to Contintental. I say “changed”, it is rather a process. After 20 years of knitting English everything, including gauge, postures, turning at the end of the row, etc, is different. And although I am lusting over many beautiful projects I am disciplining myself to stay with simple knitting in order to refine my new skills. For me this was FEARLESS.

  91. I decided to knit a cardigan… then another! The second didn’t turn out so well on the first run, so I ripped it out and started over. I also became more confident in the gauge department – I’m a tight knitter and generally have to go up a size or 2. Now I know that and swatch and can avoid sadness!

  92. I celebrated turning 50 by going on a couple of “knitting boondoggles” with friends — driving 5 hours each way in one day to see the Yarn Harlot speak was one of them. I attempted lace knitting for the first time, with mixed success but only had to put one project in extended time-out. I bought a blocking board and have used it! One more thing I need to overcome is fear of felting. I have several projects knitted but not felted and my goal is to do it this week. The goal for 2009? To clean out my craft room so I can find things when I want them. I’ll need to be fearless to tackle that task!

  93. I decided to make everyone in both our families a hand knitted or crochet item. The ladies were to all get felted bags. I had a total of 76 gifts to make, 30 of which were felted bags. I managed to complete 63 projects with 27 felted bags. See photo of the Bag Ladies from my DH’s family.
    Bag Ladies 2008

  94. This year I learned to do stranded knitting. I made a wonderful Andean Chullo hat (well two actually). Nearly every time I wear my hat people comment on how good it looks and when I proudly tell them I made it myself, they are amazed and suitable impressed. It’s amazing how empowering mastering a new technique can be!

  95. I successfully modified a sweater and I designed a top down vest for my (adult) son. The comments were all positive, including “it looks like you bought it in a store” – meant well – and more importantly, he liked it and I liked the fit and finishing.

    I have also challenged myself to correct things that are not bad, but just not quite right, so that my knitted garments are all something I can be proud of.

    One more thing, I took on a double knit project – something I’ve tried in the past and failed miserably at. This one is not only going well, but I have to follow a chart and the knitting looks correct!

  96. This year I went completely nuts –
    I cast on for my first sweater (okay, it’s still in the knitting bag but one sleeve is mostly done!)
    With the help of a great tutorial, I taught myself how to knit entrelac.
    With the help of a wonderful teacher and a couple of great books, I learned to spin. My teacher says I am a natural πŸ™‚

  97. well after having failed miserably at my first attempt at lace in 2006 using the “very easy” Branching out Scarf pattern(, This year I decided I’d be Fearless and give it another try using a pattern LionBrand sent to my email in the newsletter, Lace Scarf pattern,, after I began knitting the scarf I was sooo enamoured with lace and that went a little further and found a hat with some lace in it as well to go with the scarf, using the Lace-Edged Women’s Hat pattern. I knitted and knitted until the scarf was about 82 inches (the pattern calls for 32”), gave it with the lace edged hat as a going away gift.
    Next year I will be even more fearless and try again to knit the Branching out scarf, hopefully this time I’ll succeed.

  98. I was fearless in two ways this year: I designed my first two sweaters (does it matter that they were for dogs?) and I finally learned to spin on a drop spindle. I have spun with a wheel for years but had never figured out the drop spindle.

  99. I crocheted and completed premee hats for charity. And I even conquered crocheting in the round, and making pom-poms for the top of the hats. The agency was tickled and adored my work!!!

  100. I started my first ever knitting in early summer and I’ve been completely in love ever since. My goal then was to knit socks. I felt that if I could do that I will have arrived. Well I did it and I love them. I’ve since bought enough sock yarn for 5 more pair and I ‘m so looking forward to lots of new socks. (I might even give a pair away.)

    I’ve also made a lace (didn’t know what I was getting into) scarf adorned with a knitted flower for my daughter.


  101. I tried cabling for the first time. As is my nature, I couldn’t start with a simple cable patterned scarf. I had to make the Jennifer Hagan’s Pub Crawler sweater from “Son of Stitch n Bitch” by Debbie Stoller (pic from book) And to make things more interesting, I converted the pattern to knit in the round, which is why my husband still doesn’t have a sweater to wear from the yarn I gave him LAST Christmas. Maybe by Valentine’s Day!

  102. I made a rug! I had been trying and trying to buy a 5′ square rug for my foyer but couldn’t find one, so while on a trip to Taos, NM I came across a weaving store, Weaving Southwest, and after looking at all the yummy yarns they have I decided I could make one. Guess what??!! It actually turned out okay. It felted down to the exact size I was hoping for. Having no pattern but the picture in my mind, I had a couple of do overs but finally figured out how to do what I wanted. I am thrilled with this project and it looks just perfect in my foyer. The women at Weaving southwest were gracious and helpful and when I discovered I didn’t buy enough colors, I sent them samples of the colors I had and they picked out the perfect color to compliment the one I already had. If I had it to do over maybe I wouldn’t pick the peach color but all in all, I am loving this project.
    I don’t know how to add the photo but it is posted on ravelry, I am blucoyote.
    This year I am going to learn cables and try some more interesting felting projects.

  103. Happy Almost New Year Everyone! I’ve never been a very prolific knitter and my #1 goal was to finish every project that I started. That didnot quite happen, but my ratio of starts to finishes has gone up! I finished an enterlac bag, but I have not had the courage to felt it yet. But I’m most proud of a reversible cable hooded scarf that I started and finished in time to give as a Christmas gift. My first cable project, and I adapted the project from two different patterns I had when I couldn’t find exactly what I wanted. One goal I get to carry over to next year is two-at-a-time socks on one circular needle. I’m excited, because now, I CAN DO ANYTHING!!!

  104. I knitted a lace shawl for myself to wear to a class reunion. It turned out great and I wore it and got some nice compliments! I also knitted fingerless mitts as Christmas presents (which I swore were stupid only a year ago b/c they had no fingers -how could they be warm enough for Iowa??) Everyone loved them and they were a huge success.
    I also took on an insane task of teaching a group of friends to knit, somethng I’ve thinking about for a long time – teaching knitting. It was a lovely idea, but it turned into more of a wine tasting/brownie eating event. There was actually knitting happening, but I think I was more into it than they were. I learned a lot from this attempt and what it takes to have a successful class.

  105. As a new knitter, nearly everything I put my needles to required a bit of stupid fearlessness.

    1. First time I knit my husband a sweater, and he LIKED it.
    Cobblestone sans Man in it

    2. First time I tried lace in the form of a sweater.
    Lightning Lace Jacet

    3. First time I knit a pair of socks that fit me. (But they weren’t for me; I just used myself as a model.)
    Pink Ribbon Socks

    4. First time I tried Tunisian crochet.
    Tunisian Trivets

    5. First time I wrote a pattern…two patterns, actually, for a water bottle cozy and a blanket, both with cables.

    6. First time to make knitted toys.
    Christine & Albert 2

  106. I was a fearless knitter by conquering my fear of lace. I picked up the needles and the lace weight yarn and went to town – 2008 was my year of lace and it was totally worth it. However, this year, I think I”m going to take a break from the intense lace, although I’m not going to give up – just not make everything lace.

  107. My mom died this year. She spent 6 weeks in a nursing home before passing. I visited her everyday, and brought my knitting with me. It was a pattern from Classic Elite Yarn’s Make It Modeern pattern booklet, which used Soft Linen yarn. I had chosen a lovely gold. The pattern was called Feather and Fan cardigan. I actually sewed the buttons on the night before my mom passed. It gives me great comfort to wear this sweater knowing that is was made while spending all that time with my mom. I cherish it. And, I knitted in public and inspired a few of the nurses.

  108. I used lace weight yarn for the first time and knitted a shawl that I designed myself, one that I have done in heavier weight yarn before and loved. It looked exactly as everyone said, shriveled and ugly. I vacuumed, washed the shawl, pinned it out, and WOW, even my husband was impressed with the result! I can’t wait to use the lace yarn in my stash!!

  109. I’m SPINNING!!! Although I had bought a spindle a few years ago, I was never successful — my own fault,I bought a big, heavy drop spindle, which was the wrong thing for what I wanted to do. This year, after reading only one book, I went to Rhinebeck and plunked down big money for a brand new Lendrum DT folding wheel. And then I came home and pulled out my pencil roving, and I spun yarn at 11:30 at night!!!

    Its definitely a skill that takes practice, but look at this:

    My first real yarn. Spun from a carded batt purchased at Rhinebeck.

    It wants to become a lace shawl. *grin*

  110. In general, I don’t have any knitting related fears… if I can read the pattern, I can make whatever it is! However, I do have my doubts about my ability to write patterns. This past year, I wrote a few knitting patterns for my collectible Blythe dolls, and maybe I’ll even write a pattern for a human one of these days!
    I also learned how to spin this year , which has brought me hours of enjoyment, and piles of new yarn!

  111. I’ve jumped into lace shawls this year – as always – wasn’t happy working the pattern “as is” HAD to modify…
    but they’ve come out pretty good (IMHO)… : D

  112. I fearlessly figured out how to work my walking wheel (great wheel) and actually spun and plied my very first skein of yarn on it! Granted, it’s a small skein at 42 yds, but for never having spun anything before, I’m very excited!

  113. I fearlessly tried a seamless sweater – for my two year old. What the heck, I thought, small projects are good places to try out new stuff.

    And I loved it. I loved it so much, I’ve nearly finished Eunny’s Tangled Yoke Cardigan, for me.

    And I also admitted to myself that I like fine yarn and small needles. Even though reams of stocking stitch can send you cross eyed, it’s a very good opportunity to catch up on one’s blog reading, as you can sit and knit and read for hours on end. Finer yarns give a finer fabric and with my small hands, anything over a 5mm needles is cumbersome. The Tangled Yoke calls for 3.75mm and they’re just about perfect.

    Onward and upwards into 2009 – my next thing to be fearlessly knitted is lace. The Icarus shawl is in my queue…

  114. Fear was not an issue in 2008–I knit my first mitten and even thrumped it! (I can’t find it now so I can’t knit the second one!.) I knit my first toe up sock–soon I’ll finish the second one. I’m almost down to the armpits of my first raglan top-down sweater. I’ve finished two of eight blocks for a cotton sweater. I’ve learned to use the round looms for making preemie hats and even adults’ hats. So the goal for 2009? Finish my projects and continue to learn new things!! Happy New Year to all!! And happy knitting! Joy

  115. I learned to knit socks this year! So far I’ve done a pair for each of my kids, and am now working on some for myself and my husband. I also got a spinning wheel from Heavenly Handspinning this year and learned to use it – I’m loving both what I’m making from it, and how much.

  116. This past year was spent teaching in Almaty, Kazakhstan and of course my yarn and needles went with me. I started a knitting class for children from ages 8-12, the class was filled every session with girls and boys who learned to cast on, knit, purl, cables and all the other stitches (some were more adept than others, of course) and they all made projects without the aid of patterns. Such imaginations and most were hit hard by the knitting bug, even joining me during lunch/recess in the kiosk for more “yarn time”. Adults asked for classes at night and there were many more knitters in Almaty at the end of that year!

  117. OK, I had never made a sweater for anyone but myself, some of which were successes, some of which, well…. Then, last Christmas (’07) my sister-in-law announced that this Christmas (’08), she would be going to Colombia to spend the holiday with her family for the first time in seventeen years. THEN, she asked if I would make a sweater for herself and each of her two sisters! Remember, two of these people I’ve never even met! But I gulped a bit and said “Sure!”
    So we picked out a pattern (luckily a fairly easy one – Colombia is hot now, so no sleeves to attach), agreed I would do the same sweater in the same size for each of the ladies, and chose colors.
    All that was left was the knitting. And the knitting. And the knitting. Never again will I do three sweaters of the same pattern back-to-back. But they got finished somehow and are currently somewhere in South America. I told her I want a photo of all three wearing their sweaters. Hope she remembers!

  118. I tried entrelac knitting for the first time – love it, love it, love it! Also learned “backwards knitting” as part of the entrelac project. I also made my first Elizabeth Zimmerman adult surprise jacket, after having puzzled over the pattern for years – and it worked! I used several colors of Silk Garden to get a random effect and the colors are lovely. And, the most fearless project of all, I taught my 19-year old daughter to knit during her college break! She has finished one scarf and started another (although she is still throwing it across the room when she discovers yet another “extra stitch”! πŸ™‚

  119. Sandi, I can’t let the year pass without thanking you for your “lifeline” solution while knitting lace projects. Why didn’t I think of that?? I’m making the Oriel Lace tunic from Interweave Knits Summer 2007 with the actual yarn suggested: pure silk. Slippery! I already dropped two stiches and it took me forever to unknit and reknit. So your lifesaver hint was my lifesaver. Thank you!

  120. I once was a threadie at heart, and simply loved doing doilies, especially filet crochet and irish crochet. As time passed, I developed arthritis and severe tremors, causing me to give up doing work with the smaller needles and thread. This 2008 I came upon 2 pattern books with dainty doilies and exquisite snowflakes and challenged myself to get back into thread work. The doilies came first and worked up well but I did have problems with tension due to the tremors. I kept at it and by the time I got to the snowflakes I was able to excercise more control by not trying to go as fast as I used to. I was thrilled with the results and received many compliments. It took a lot of patience and frogging to get to the final products, but I have learned we can do thinks we assumed were not within our reach.

  121. For my challenge knitting, I learned short rows and instead of wrap and turn–learned to purl backwards. This was for the ruffles scarf in Scarf style with the Noro Silk Garden Yarn. I have gotten many coments of “WOW, how did you do that?” The Ruffles pattern was one of the reasons I bought the book for my Christmas two years ago. I finally got brave enough to do it. I am starting my first sweater for my husband.

  122. This year I took a beginner’s class and learned to spin on a drop spindle. So far I’ve spun 9 oz of beautiful fawn alpaca; and 2 oz merino and about 3 oz of targhee top. This may be a new addiction for me. Margaret H.

  123. I did lace. I did it, I did! OK, not like serious lace with serious charts, but I did do it.
    I’ve also completed two afghans with one on the needles right now.

    My biggest fearless knitting was the charity knits-I made money for organizations. How cool is that?

  124. I discovered Elizabeth Zimmerman this year. Reading her books changed my knitting life entirely. I crafted a full size sweater jacket that fits, tried the surprize baby sweater, and then tried socks. Doing socks lead me to knitting everything on two circular needles. I designed some knitted purses, the next thing I discovered was felting. I did clutches, knitting bags, hats and finally a pair of slippers. For 2009, I plan to venture into lace knitting.

  125. I took part in two knitting competitions for the very first time – one for socks, the other for hats. But you know what? I won’t be doing it again in a hurry. Not only were the patterns for both more than disappointing – and, as they’re not available until the competition starts, there’s no choice in the matter – but I also didn’t enjoy trying to knit something as fast as I possibly could in order to get it in the post asap and “kill” my target! I prefer to enjoy my knitting without such pressure!

  126. I learned how to knit, how to cable, how to knit backwards (still not my best skill) and how to knit lace. I then went on to design my own shawl pattern (which I’m hopefully going to finish before the new year). (my second completed lace shawl) (the shawl I’m designing (and yes the pattern is completely lost in the color) (and the lace pattern from the shawl done in a different yarn)

  127. I started knitting in October of 2007 so my challenge was to move on from dish cloths. I made three market bags, several hats and four pairs of socks. I am currently working on my fifth and sixth pair. I love making socks! I use the magic loop method and am attempting two at a time currently.

  128. I was a fearless knitter in a number of ways in 2008.

    I knit my first pair of socks.
    I knit my first lace
    I knit my first project with beads.
    I did my first experimentation with felting.
    I improvised my first crochet pattern.
    I knit my first seamless sweater.

    In 2009 I want to learn to spin and I want to improve my sock knitting and try some of the other techniques that are out there…toe up, two at a time, magic loop…..

  129. First off, congratulations to everyone here, and PeggyS, I am so impressed! The shawl is beautiful. JenniferS, congrats as well, I can’t even find a pattern that my husband likes! Anyway, before 2008 I had made scarves. That’s it. So, I decided to get fearless, had a friend teach me how to purl, and went to town. I made socks, gloves, hats, pillows; I learned fair isle and intarsia, I was even able to make the Mario Felted Bag but I adjusted it to fit a laptop. I made a few toys, a few baby dresses, and I started my first sweater. I’m blocking the pieces now, but I hope to have it done before 2009!!

  130. I have always shied away from lace patterns but decided to bite the bullet and try your Juliet scarf pattern. I had to look up a couple of the stitches but it turned out great and I have had lots of compliments while wearing it.

  131. What inspiring stories! I decided to really push myself this year. I’ve been knitting since I was a little girl, but staying in the safe zones of knit and purl and patterns for simple sweaters and scarfs. This year for the first time I……

    Knit a sweater without a pattern (still working on the sleeves),
    learned to drop spin well enough to ply and knit something from my yarn,
    learned to spin on a wheel (addicted now….),
    made scarves without a pattern,
    made a sock — then frogged it all the way back to try again with a pattern,
    made fingerless gloves for my fil,
    and finally made a toy fish for my nephews

    For next year, Knitting Daily TV has inspired me to tackle cables.

    It was just an amazing year of fiber for me. I felt I was breaking through to a new level as a knitter and it was liberating.

  132. This is sad, I thought I already posted, but I cant seem to find it. I wanted to add pictures. Anyway, in 2008 I went from knitting only scarves to socks, hats, gloves, pillows, toys, etc. I’ve started my first sweater, which is blocking right now and needs one more sleeve. I cabled and fair isled, I made the super mario felted bag, one of the hardest projects yet for me. I also learned to spin on a drop spindle and I started a knitting club at my universeity which knits for the community

  133. Well, I just started knitting at the end of last year, so all of 2008 was full of “firsts” for me. I made Christmas gifts for 13 people, a necktie for my husband, and a couple of toys. I wrestled with my first fitted project–fingerless gloves. I learned how to do short rows for a toy duck ( and to work with multiple colors for a quilt wrap ( I think the most “fearless” thing I did, though, was adapting patterns to suit my needs. I changed a sock pattern into mary-jane style slippers, for example.
    I can’t, however, seem to figure out how to add photo’s to this comment. Maybe the mods can grab some from these links for me?

  134. I was “just” a scarf knitter for about 4 years. I collected sock yarn during those years but was so intimidated by them – I would knit a cuff and then frog it back, dozens of times. In March of 2008, I finally sat down with a book, and knitted a sample baby size sock in worsted weight yarn from start to finish in 5 hours! Woot! I have been a sockaholic since that moment and am plowing through my stash, having knitted 16 pairs of socks in the past 8 months, following patterns (with charts!) for all of them (none are plain stockinette!). And I am a master of the kitchener stitch! Double woot!

  135. This year started with my first ever lace shawl, which I proudly wore on my first cruise in February. Secondly, I vowed to make everyone in my family gifts this year — no purchased gifts. So, everyone received socks — 13 pairs in all. It was so fun watching them open their socks and comparing them with each other. Too fun. Everyone is looking forward to next year’s sock extravaganza. Finally, I attempted dyeing. The first few were gradual dyes with variations in color density. The next one taught me a great lesson — you must let one color dry if you want two sharrp colors — and black and yellow make green if you don’t let one dry before adding the next color. What a wonderful time I had in 2008 — can’t wait for 2009.

  136. I learned to spin in 2008! I’ve also learned a new cable pattern from Interweave Press’ Cables & Arans. My goal now for 2009 is to learn all of the cable patterns in the book and to incorporate them into sweaters and purses.
    Kathryn J

  137. I was just talking about this challenge yesterday with my knitting group! Because of Sandi’s encouragement, and despite that I had been knitting for 3 years already, it wasn’t until this year that I feel I became a real knitter. I learned how to do cables and lace. I made my first real sweater, and it was lace!!! I started knitting garments for myself instead of for babies. I made two pairs of socks. I designed my own colorwork chart and knit it up. I also learned an enormous amount just by hanging out with so many other talented knitters. This year my goals so far are to learn to crochet, entrelac, magic loop, and 2 socks at a time.

  138. I took two big knitting steps in 2008. I learned Fair Isle by doing the We Call Them Pirates hat. So much fun! I also took a sock class and have now become an absolute FOOL for socks! Who knew?

  139. Well, All year I was trying to crochet or knit things, I tryed crocheting socks for my husband but had a hard time with those, I wanted to crochet a sweater but realized that the yarn that I wanted to use couldn’t be done with crochet it so I knitted it instead. I changed it a little, I didn’t make it into a sweater but made it into a shirt for my daughter and she loves it.

  140. Such timing. Just the other day, I wrote a blog entry on all the new stuff I learned this year, with pictures of the projects! A quickie rundown: I learned to felt, block, follow a lace crochet chart, purl, follow a multi-stitch pattern, pick up stitches, sew seams and other basic garment construction, knit in the round, increase, decrease, knit with short rows, knit and crochet buttonholes, make ribbing, combine knit and crochet in one project, turn a heel, use magic loop, use DPNs, make socks, and add a simple intarsia motif into a hat. Yes, this was the year I branched out from simple garter stitch scarves, and actually learned to knit. If you wish, you can read the blog entry and see the pictures here. Thanks, Sandi. Thanks, Interweave. Thank you, Knitting Daily!

  141. I knit with cotton chenille for the first time, making the Seafoam Towels by Ann Budd. I ripped out 3 times before I got the hang of working with the twisting worming yarn. I’ve happily crocheted with this yarn but I can see why everyone says that to knit with it can be frustrating. I’m giving them as a baby present and intend to try a set for myself – eventually.

  142. This year I tackled Fair Isle, started a sweater for myself, and my proudest accomplishment was knitting baby bunting using my own pattern. I couldn’t find any patterns that I liked, so I used measurements from baby sweaters and sleep sacks to make a beautiful and comfortable bunting for my son. I felt totally fearless!

  143. I made 4 hats and one scarf during the month December for Christmas presents. One hat was a little “short” and did not quite cover my son’s ears. At his request I said “of course I can make it longer so your ears will be completely covered.”. My fearlessness was when I took the sissors and nipped off the top of the hat and preceeded to unravel the top of the hat not knowing if I could really put the stitches back on the needles and make the hat longer. I did it, I was so pleased.

  144. Wow! Now that I think about it, I did at least 3 new things this year. I made two lace shopping bags, took a class on Fair Isle and made a child’s hat and right now I am teaching myself entrelac from a pattern in 2007 Knits Christmas issue. It has been frustrating as I made many mistakes and my products aren’t perfect, but they are usable. I have such fun with this and know that I drive the local yarn shop people crazy with my questions and pleas for help. Marge W

  145. I’ve been learning to spin in 2008, and this year I spun some alpaca and Jacob sheep for my Sister-in-law for Christmas. It was sport weight, the thinnest I’ve ever spun, and it was kinda scary to give yarn away for the first time that I made myself. She loved it, though!

  146. I continued on my quest to try new things, a pair of lace socks, needle felting with fibers other than wool New projects that are ranked more difficult. It’s been fun and I will continue to try new and more difficult stitches and projects.

  147. Hi Sansdy & Friends! I must admit, I have always hated knitting! I have been an avid crocheter since the age of 5 years old. At age 7 I marketed my goods on a tin foil backed board with a sample attached to it and boy did they sell! I also tried knitting at that age and absolutely hated it!
    I decided this year (actualy 2 months ago) that I wanted to knit an item as I found my needles from the early 70’s (yep that long ago!) and decided to try it again. Total frustration! I called my Aunt Mary in New Hampshire figuring hey! she’ll know what pearling is and if I am doing it correctly. Welp, not much help there. It was even mkore confusing after her well you see a pearl, you’ve done it right, explanation. So. I went online and here I am. I love the step by step, teh pictures, the explanation of styles of knitting and found out….Hey! I’m a continental knitter and I really do recall hoe to knit! So, I have set about knitting many things. As we all know the economy is for crap! So, I put about making 3 complete Barbie outfits (from some old patterns I’ve never used for the past 15 years) and even made my own pieces to compliment them. My daughter loves them. Alomg with that have been hats, belts, lap afghans, Nano cases, cell phone carriers, oh my gosh have I been busy! I even made a cable doggie sweater that is to die for! The very best part of all this is I have been able to teach my 10 year old granddaughter to knit as well! She loves it! If you’d like some pictures, I’d be happy to send some.

    By the way, knitting has helped me make it through some tough times with my oldest brother taking chemo & radiation. I did have to be a bit creative for some items as I live in a small town that only has a Wal Mart….no items for knitting there unless you are just starting with a pair of needles. So, I took out my handy dandy metal hangers and cut me out a V, took my pliers and made two crooks on each end, used my emory board to file the ends so as not to pick my yarns and wha lah! A cable needle was born.

    Happy Fearless New Year Friends! Knit on!

  148. This year I finally conquered entrelac! I did it as part of the requirments for The Knitting Guild Association’s third level master hand knitting certification. I became a master knitter this year!
    On the spinning front, I spun 18 skeins of shelty dog hair for a friend.

  149. I allowed myself to join a knitting group and not feel guilty about the time I spent with them. I took every class that interested me in order to increase my knitting skill. I found a local yarn shop where they WANTED to help me with my problems instead of just trying to sell me expensive yarn and then get out of the shop. I started reading several knit blogs on line to expose myself to knitters in other countries….it has been so much fun! Thanks for asking…..

  150. I just wanted to ask that you all forgive the typos in my above post. I did not think it went through. I have been struggling with how to knit in the round (the joining part) and how to attach a heel flap on a sock to the foot part after its knit. If anyone can help me overcome this hurdle it would be much appreciated! Thanks again!

  151. After 15 years of not touching a knitting needle, I started by visiting the internet. Slowly, first with washcloths, (so many sites!), next on to a couple of Faroese shawls and socks. The sock domain has changed a lot since my sock knitting days. I learned toe up on two circs and never looked back! (anyone interested in some old dpns?) On to Chrismas knitting, I managed to finish it all in spite of procrastinating until mid-November to begin.

    Also designed a bathroom rug for my daughter, the first time I had ever tried to do anything on my own without a pattern and everyone loves it! So pleased…..

    In 2009 I’d like to learn even more new methods. Am even playing with the idea of trying spinning. It’s what keeps us young, this learning curve (I’m 70)!

    So many yarns and patterns, so little time…..


  152. Well, I’ve only been knitting for a little over a year, but it was a pretty fearless year! I started with knitting toys, then tried a little lace, some cables (which I’m now addicted to), sweaters for my little ones (one cabled and one intarsia), socks, felting, 2-in-1 Christmas stockings (yep, 2 at a time, one inside the other…the coolest thing ever), and even a little designing!

    I’ve crocheted forever and thought I knew all there was to know, but boy was I wrong! I created my first ever original designs and even tried a little tunisian crochet! I’m “hooked” all over again now!

    And if all that wasn’t enough, I also took the leap to try spinning! My hubby bought me a drop spindle and some fiber for my birthday and I have yet another fiber addiction to add to the list now! πŸ˜€

    Not sure how to top it all for next year though! LOL

  153. This year, I truly enjoyed practicing new techniques, like slip stitch knitting (marvelous and easy for color work), cable knitting, knitting flowers and leaves, and sock knitting using dpns. I turned some samples into useful objects, like a cell phone cover, that has been complimented, and a knitted coat pin. While I’m much more forgiving with myself for a little mistake that doesn’t sacrifice the item I’m knitting, I’m also more willing to rip it out! So, last night I ripped out a first time, easy knitted sock/bootie using dpns from an Icelandic pattern – five times! I made the same mistake more than once, and found new ones along the way. My problem was that I was knitting and trying to watch Masterpiece Theatre at the same time, and this will not work for me! Peacefulness transcends when I’m knitting, and aside from soft music, I cannot concentrate on two things at once, a good life lesson! I shall persevere and start and finish two sock/booties for little Sophie before this year ends! These will be my first, and surely not my last, work with dps. I love them!

  154. I took up the lace challenge having not done well with it in the past. This year I completed a lace stole KAL, and another stole as well. I have also started a 3rd! The second stole had MANY errors in the pattern, which I was able to correct, and completed it. It looked wonderful, but discovered that the pattern also was in error on the dimensions of the piece. Now I may take it apart and redo it so it is bigger – another new challenge!

  155. Well, thanks to your prodding to be fearless, last year I…
    completed a sweater for myself, that actually fits!
    learned to spin on a drop spindle
    learned to spin on a wheel, and bought one, Yay!
    learned to process raw fleeces
    knit ALL my Christmas gifts.

    thanks for all your insight, guidance and encouragement.

  156. I finally finished my first pair of socks that I had ripped out about 5 times! They’re beautiful, if not perfect. I can’t wait to start another pair in a bulkier yarn for (next) winter. I have carpal tunnel syndrome and go VERY slowly, but I refuse to stop knitting,now that I’ve picked it up again after many years.

  157. I was fearless as I taught two friends to knit. This may sound like an easy task, but since I “throw” when I knit, one of my friends wanted to learn how to “pick” and I actually taught her! She is now one of the most fabulous knitters I know and she has only been knitting for about 8 months!

    Another element to my teaching style to to constantly reinforce the notion that “IT’S JUST KNITTING”!! Who cares if you screw it up, it’s not the end of the world, just ravel it out and have fun knitting it again!

    That has become our “fearless” mantra…”IT’S JUST KNITTING”!


  158. I finally finished my first pair of socks! I had started them 1 year ago, kept ripping them out, finally finished them and they’re wonderful! (Not perfect, just wonderful). Now I want to finish a lace afgan I started many years ago when my daughter was sick, and I’ll give it to her when it’s done. Anyone else have projects they started SO long ago and finally finished?

  159. This year I tried knitting with larger needles. I found a great slipper pattern that used size 17 needles and knitted 8 pairs for gifts and got started on one for me. I used size 19 and 50 to make scarves and made some for the special olympics. I did receive size 35 as a Christmas gift and can’t wait to get started on a project with them. Do you have any suggestions?
    I really look forward to the Knitting Daily e-mail. Thanks for all you do.

  160. I conquered 2 things this year, but the biggest was my fear of finding an LYS within driving distance. I know that sounds strange, but I am severely directionally challenged (I get lost trying to find my own house), so to have to navigate streets in another city that I’ve never been on before has been scary. But I did it! And in so doing I found 2 lovely little shops that I’m sure I’ll be able to find again with no problem.

    My second fear knitting with new fibers. Something that costs as much as cashmere can carry a lot of fear in each little ball. The fear of screwing up whatever you’re making. But I’ve successfully knitted with cashmere, alpaca, and even lace weight hairy blends. Now I can do just about anything.

  161. This year, I was a totally fearless knitter. My great fear was actually learning to knit! I had tried it as a teenager, and I just couldn’t figure it out. I decided in February of this year that I was going to learn. I taught myself from pictures (I’m a very visual person, so having illustrated instructions of where the needles and yarns WENT was exactly what I needed.) I went on to knit washcloths, hats, socks, more hats, scarves, a fitted shrug, more hats, and still more hats. I can knit in the round, I can do cables, I even did a little intarsia. I learned several different cast-ons and bind-offs. I learned both the Eastern cast-on and entrelac when I fell in love with the entrelac socks in Interweave Knits. I feel like I can do almost anything now!

    My next project is a pair of lace gloves. Lace looks so tricky, but as long as I think I can do it, I will!

  162. I tried my hand at knitting lace, and managed to complete 1 scarf, 1 shawl (in a VERY simple pattern), and even a pair of socks (socks are also a frist for me).

  163. I worked lace, both with fingering yarn that I recycled from some woolen sweaters and with lace weight yarn + beads. The fingering weight shawl will be for my mom & the lace-weight stole will be for me.

  164. I would say I was fearless just by doing knitting alone. I’ve been a crocheter since I was 10 and it was also at that age when I learned to knit, but I was more into crochet so my knitting experiences until this year have only been swatches and scarves that curl because I only knew stockinette.
    I can’t recall what triggered this sudden need for switching from hooks to needles (maybe it was Vickie Howell’s rock-n-roll knitting coolness, or the delicate works of The Purl Bee), but I do know that this Christmas I gave a cabled (my first cable ever!) scarf with seed stitch at each side of the cable and also a pair of fingerless gloves and a ribbed hat. The scarf was for my boyfriend’s mom and the gloves and hat for my brother (I finished the gifts right at the 11th second, really). My brother’s gift was the one with which I lost my fear of knitting in the rounds and only because I discovered the amazing Magic Loop! I can finally try making socks again! I had even bought dpn’s for experimenting with it, but I would just keep stabbing myself so I moved on. But knowing now how to use the Magic Loop doesn’t exactly mean that I’m going to put my almost unused dpn’s aside, no way. For 2009 I want to master ALL tools and also I’m going to try lace. Oh, yes! Next year I’l be making lace swatches ’till my fingers bleed πŸ˜€

  165. It has to be 25 years, at least, since I’ve knitted, that is, until last month. And back then I taught myself from a pamphlet and, apparently, all squirrelly. But a friend of mine paid my tuition for a workshop on Orenburg lace knitting and I’m interested in Russian needlework, so I bought needles size zero to three and went. I couldn’t, I discovered, even cast on (what in the world is long tail cast on, I thought). Took me a week to figure that out. Then I figured this is stupid. I can learn this. I started out with an Aran cabled scarf which, yes, does have egregious errors known probably only to me. Otherwise it’s rather lovely. Wanted one for a decade with a hat to matchl So now I’m working on the hat, using circular needles (this pair I happen to hate; there must be better ones, like bamboo…metal hurts my aged finger pads) and then, eek, I have to switch to double pointed needles. I’ve no clue on that one but I haven’t died yet. I’m working my way up to Scandinavian sweaters. Notice I have not included the Orenburg shawl in my list yet. Notice I said yet. That workshop was amazing but I think I’d use a Scandinavian sweater more often. Anyhow, after a quarter century of fully incorrect knitting, I’m plunging in, and I bring the knitting to fill in the gaps where I’d be watching television or waiting for someone or thing. I feel I’m no longer wasting time. I’m working up to designing something of my own. But not this week.

  166. Hi,
    I actually conquered a few fears in 2008. I usually just knit scarves and easy things like that. Well this year I made everyone in my family a pair of mittens. I was so excited that I made something that was’nt a scarf. I also started my first cabled project. I started a beautiful cabled scarf from some yarn that I had stashed away. It isn’t finished yet, but almost. I am so excited that I finally broke out of my shell and did something amazing. Now I can’t wait to see what the next year has in store for me and knitting.


  167. I unraveled a huge mess for a good friend, a beginning knitter, and designed her a new project with the yarn and knit it myself over strenuous objections from my husband. It was awful but also hugely satisfying. I also helped her design a solution to another problem — she had a gift of beautiful yarn but not enough of it, and needed to combine new yarns … she was very happy with both projects. I hope to get her started in the basics of lace soon.
    My 2009 challenge is the “year of lace” I signed up for. It looks hugely challenging, but I cannot wait to get started — I believe the first kit arrives in March.

  168. Oh wow! 2008 was quite eventful. I lived on an organic farm in England, and only had a backpack. So my local yarn store convinced me to try lace for the first time since it was so portable. But while I was there, I also got to help shear sheep and learned to spin and dye using natural plant material! When I got back home I saved up every penny until I could purchase my very own spinning wheel. Then, while looking through my stash, I decided to throw all my patterns out the window (metaphorically) and began designing my own patterns. I’m a performer and I dress like a faery and tell stories, so I’m calling my collection of patterns “Pixie’s Knits” and they’re inspired by nature. Every item is an adventure! Pictures and stories are available at my website: and

  169. I was adventurous in SO many ways in 2008!! I taught myself to knit in the spring, knit a coming-home sweater, hat and socks for my new baby girl, taught myself cables with and without a cabling needle, knitting in the round on DPNs, seaming, and finally, Magic-loop 2 at a time a la Melissa Morgan Oakes! I am so proud of what I’ve learned this year, and I’ll be teaching knitting to a group of friends next month!!

  170. I conquered TWO fears this year – fear of dyeing (took a class, dyed and spun some wool, and dyed some purchased yarn for a pair of unique “Target” socks for my archer daughter) and the fear of stranded knitting (knitted 10 miniature norwegian sweaters I designed for my Alan Dart Gnomes).

    In 2009, I will conquer another fear… knitting my first full-size Dale of Norway sweater for my DH, who will wear anything. πŸ™‚ I’m ready now! Also, I plan on following Sandi’s emails on Color she did this year ( a major fear of mine).

  171. I had been staying away from cables because they seemed intricate and complicated. I finally tried it and couldn’t believe how simple it actually was! And now I can’t stop, I made cabled everything to give for Christmas. I also learned how to use double pointed needles for small projects in the round. Next I want to learn how to knit socks!

  172. I started the year tackling fingerless gloves. I thought I would move on to mittens and then socks. Never got there. I developed cancer and worked on a wedding afghan for my son during chemo. I finished it just after finishing the chemo and gave it to them only a short time after surgery at their wedding. For me I conquered the fear of not surviving long enough to finish it and I’m still alive.

  173. I was fearless in 2008 because I took the time to teach myself how to knit. I completed a one sock and I am starting its mate tonight. It may not seem like alot to some but I can’t stop bragging about my sock(that fits correctly also) : D.

    I plan to use the Kitchener Stitch as suggested in the last e-mail ; )

  174. I had tried simple lace knitting previously, but always avoided the really intricate kind done on tiny needles, with multiple charts to read and sort out. This year I completed a shawl out of Kidsilk haze and the whole shawl slides through my size 5 wedding band with ease! I’m also currently knitting patterns designed by the famous Anne at Knitspot, and splurged on a wire lace blocking kit from knitpicks, so I can get the job done right.

  175. After contemplating it for a long time, I learned to knit in early December. I worked feverishly to complete some small projects for gifts and gave everyone handmade gifts this year. I am now working on my first hat (for myself). I am learning to appreciate the value of this skill to my emotional well-being and to my wallet.

  176. I knit socks for the first time. I joined a social knitting club – I’m a loner knitter – or ‘was’ I should say! And my most fearless project? Argyle *and* Double knitting – both in one project, never attempted before this project.

  177. I felt totally fearless as I completed my holiday gift of choice: Knitty’s “Fetching” wristwarmers. I made two pairs for friends, and marveled at how this little project incorporated a number of techniques that would have terrified me even a year ago: DPNs, cable cast-on, cables, picking up stitches, and picot bind-off. Not only was I able to master these skills, but I had so much fun that I just cast on a third pair to make for a friend’s birthday!

  178. My mom challenged me to knit her gloves!!! I had only done socks and fingerless miitens/gloves but never full fingered gloves. I did it!!! Need a little more practice, but I did!!!

  179. I didn’t even remember I was being fearless, but I learned spinning on a spindle, and I designed…..and knit my design!! And wore it after it was completed.

    Holy cats–I was like tewtally fearless!!!

  180. I started a yarn store. Yup, how crazy is that? Not exactly fearless knitting, but it was definitely fearless! I got the idea in fall of 07 when I was able to buy an old bookstore dirt cheap that had a little extra room on the shelves. So I contacted another yarn store and got contacts. I had received a promotion at my night job and was able to take the little extra I got each week and started buying yarn and notions. Slowly, over the last year, I have built stock and what lessons I will give and come the new year, I start advertising. I still am VERY small. If it continues to grow, I have an extra room that is presently book storage I can clean out and have the knitting stuff in one whole room to itself.

    On Ravelry I am Bookworm-Silkworm
    Etsy I am bookwormsilkworm

    You can check me out at

  181. I was certainly fearless in buying yarn – I bought a ton.
    But now that I think about it, I was a bit fearless. I knit my first cardigan for my self (I had already knit one for my mom). And it only took a week (bulky yarn). I can’t wait to make another. I was even more fearless in how much I modified the pattern to fit my curves.
    Also, I learned to spin this year. Which is great. 3 people got or are getting some of my handspun for Xmas. 2 of them are people I taught to knit this year. Quite a year!

  182. I have been knitting since I was 8 years old and consider myself an experienced knitter. This year I finished a beautiful sweater for my granddaughter that involved bands knitted in various patterns (in Berroco Comfort). She loved it! And boy, was I glad to finish it! I knitted small gifts for the people in my office. I learned to make fingerless gloves using waste yarn to mark the thumb. I learned to follow a cable chart (looked like a lot of chicken scratches until I color coded the various stitch combinations) to make an adorable java jacket (for a mug–from I even made myself a neck warmer (also from knitty); I rarely knit for myself, just the grandkids. I got a great deal of pleasure making these adorable gifts and it was wonderful to find so much on the Internet! This coming year, I plan to diminish my stash.

  183. I knitted a red vest that fits (beautifully) with about 4″ negative ease. Like a lot of generously endowed women, I’ve generally erred on the side of making things looser rather than tighter. I’d done that with this particular vest but the resulting bagginess was anything but stylish. So I unraveled the whole thing and re-knitted it a couple of sizes smaller. Once I’d sewn it up, I was almost afraid to try it on, but it looks stunning and not at all floozy-ish. The galleries were what gave me the courage, seeing women with bodies like mine looking wonderful in more form-fitting knitted garments. Thank you!

  184. on jan 1st of 2008 i started my most fearless project ever- a wedding. no, really. an entire wedding! i’m knitting my dress, the tux, the food, the cake… even the invitations are hand knit. i’ve been working on it all year, and have two more years to finish it. i’ve even started a blog about it at!

    if that’s not fearless, i don’t know what is! πŸ™‚


  185. I actually completed not one, but TWO gift scarves for Christmas (I’ve never finished anything in my life) and successfully blocked both of them! I also attempted lace for the first time, and completed half of a stole that I will be finishing in 2009!

  186. Cables were a big one for me this year, and now i love them! I even ordered a sweater kit fro Ireland to knit my hubby a sweater in his family names cable design! But another one for me were toe up cuff down (and still do) but am trying to be comfortable with both! Still working on comfort level with short rows. You’d think after the Tannembaunm hat i would be!

  187. I learned to knit the center of a doily in fine crochet thread and am now on row 112 of the Niebling Lyra. I learned to do nupps in laceweight yarn and am now ready to tackle Kid Silk Haze in a lace pattern. I have enjoyed the challenge of the doily and the long patterns that change constantly have helped my menory. I had a small stroke in late June and while I was not really aware of any damage there was a bit of fog;. Knitting lace has helped with this. The neurologist thought it was a great idea..

  188. Wow- you are all fabulous!!! I tend to be a fearless knitter by nature – I try some almost stupidly hard things just because I hate to knit straight, boring things (like stockinet[sp?] sweaters!). I was knitting argyle socks in high school – I suppose I just didn’t know enough to be scared! But I think I outdid myself this year. I have begun to knit lace – but nothing small, mind you. It’s the large entrelac (also have never done entrelac!) shawl from Interweave’s Best book. I’m almost done, just finishing the border. I think the blocking will be another challenge! But hey – this is what life’s all about! Go for it!

  189. I made four pairs of felted clogs slippers for gifts this year – my first attemtp at felting (fulling) – I had been putting it off for two years since I bought pattern – and it was so easy; I can’t believe how easy it was!

    the pics show the finished result before trimming off the fluffy bits but I was so excited I couldn’t wait to take a pic!

    The fourth pair was a burgundy pair like the one shown!

    This year will be an attempt to make socks on circulars – two at once!

  190. Lots of firsts for me this year – I knitted socks for the first time; a Pi Shawl blanket (a la Jared Flood) for my mother’s Xmas present and began hand dyeing my own yarn. Oh – and I learned to spin! Hmmm…. I hope there’s plenty left to learn in ’09. I also started attending a knitting group and have met some wonderful women as a result.

  191. I picked up knitting needles after a break of 10 years, in preparation for becoming a grandma.
    I knitted 32 projects in 2008 – I just counted today!
    I finished EVERY SINGLE ONE!!!!!! And I only ripped one.
    I planned, knitted and finished – in time – a knitted Christmas present for everyone on my list. Including 2 whole adult sweaters and my very first lace scarf.
    I discovered that knitting has reached the internet, I discovered knitterly blogs, and best of all, IK!! So many tips to improve my work.
    For 2009 I want to try toe-up socks, knee socks, circular needle socks, a lace shawl and maybe felting.
    Such a happy crafter…

  192. I took on a sweater KAL for a cabled tunic. I have gained a lot of weight this year, mainly due to medications and being under the weather most of the year. I was nervous about knitting such a sweater and yet I am very proud of the work I have done on it so far.

    I have learned new ways of working with color and working with cables, thanks in large part to Fiona Ellis who is a Canadian designer. I am incorporating these lessons into my patterns for bags.

    I also figured out Broomstick Lace, which is a crocheted technique. I even made a bag using this technique. I knitted a pair of sock and turned my first heel. The bizarre part, was that I was showing others how to turn heels and to pick up stitches to continue the gusset, when I had never done it myself until this year.

    I love to learn new techniques and skills as I love a challenge with my knitting and crochet.


  193. my fearless knitting project was to reduce my stash in a useful way. Other than knitting mass socks, gloves, and hats for presents, I decided the best of the best had to go to something special so about 20 skeins of yarn went to my oldest daughter who just discoverd crochet, in the form on a gift basket, with a walmart card, tea, and a set of crochet hooks. my youngest daughter took a picture of it. and there were 24 skeins of a discontinued yarn called ragdoll that is a very heavy feltable wool with fun names like hop, skip, jump, punch, sorbet, wow, etc, in wild color combinations. I had been wanting to make something out of it for a while, but i didnt have enough of any one color to make a whole anything. At this time my wintercoat and my waist line had a disagreement and I was going to need a new winter coat but my funds are limited…then i got the idea to make a coat of many colors, with all these colors that dont seemingly match…it came out great. everyone who has seen the finished coat (yeah its only been finished a week) has asked me where they can buy one. haha its the only like it in the world. My daughter also took a picture of it, when she sends it to my computer I will post it here. I even added very large purple buttons to it as there is purple on the collar and the edge of the sleeves so I figured the buttons would pull the purple in more visually. i still have to line it, and when I loose the extra weight, I can felt it down a little. all the ones making fun of me…i’m the one laughing now. In the mean time, my stash is down to two rubbermaid storage bins instead of ‘the spare room’

  194. I became a Grandmother of Twins (boy and girl) on Sept. 5, 2008 and knitted among the normal hats, socks, etc. two lovely Baby Surprise Jackets! Also ventured to a pair of Thrummed Mittens for my construction worker son, several pairs of fingerless mitts, cable mitts and hats for the girls. Hopefully, with the encouragement of this wonderful site, I will be even more fearless in 2009, but I’ll let you know in 365 days!

  195. I had tried to make Fair Isle mittens before, but was totally flummoxed by the thumb – how to include the gusset, and how to adapt the pattern once the thumb stitches were removed. As a result, I felt I could never make a Fair Isle mitten. Well, I’m on my second pair now, as a somewhat late holiday gift. (The first pair was done on time). The pattern features an afterthought thumb, eliminating gusset stitches.

    I’ve done something I thought I couldn’t do, and people are just wowed by it! (But not as wowed as I am.)


  196. This year was a year of firsts for me. I took up spinning in May and am loving it! I knitted my first cables, my first lace and my first socks. I also took out subs for Interweave Knits, Crochet and Spin-Off. I’m going to continue with Knits and Spin-Off if I can persuade DH to use the credit card for me. I started spinning Romney, moved onto BFL, Merino and Rambouillet and have now spun Cashmere and Gotland. I’ve just started spinning my first intentional spinning, aiming for sport-weight in a beautiful Romney hogget fleece. I’ve also prepped some wool from scratch and I really enjoy that too, much more satisfying than dropping it off at the mill.
    I’m aiming for stash reduction for next year, both in yarn and fibre. We’re looking at putting an extension on the garage for my crafting, but it would be much easier if I didn’t have to shift half the house out there!

  197. Well- I made my first pair of thrummed mittens this year. I have always thought that Minnesota winters would be a tad warmer if I had a pair. I gave those pair away as a gift, however, but shall be making more! My new goal for next year is to felt something (on purpose for a change). LOL I am tempted to make an adult sweater also… you know, the kind that actually fits! One thing at a time…. Happy New Year! ~Tish

  198. I am new to this sight and plan on trying a few things in 2009 I have made things such as afghans, scarfs, pray shawls, prom shawls, dish cloths, bibs and even a sweater. My goal for ’09 is blocking, improving the sweaters, socks and felting. I love the site and love the tv show I tape it so I can pause to catch up or slow mo it if need be. I have learned some really great tips from both, looking forward to a great ’09. Rosemary

  199. I tackled my yarn stash!! Now I have a 20 X 20 studio with sky lights with all of my stash tubbed and labled. I have had people ask if I found yarn I didn’t know I had. The answer is “no!” Do parents forget one of their children!?!?! Now I can see every skein of yarn and dream every day about what I am going to do with each and every one of them. In the midst of all of this, I also finished some abandoned projects and learned how to two-color, two-hand knit. What a great year. Thank you for challenging me to be fearless. Jan

  200. It’s come to me rather late, but I took on the Fearless Crocheter tag when I decided to design a tunic along the lines of Lion Brand’s Cabled Tunic pattern! It’s taken me weeks of plotting and planning and rounding up any crochet pattern that had a rope or cable or twist, and then there was the yarn to be decided upon….decisions decisions!!! But, I have the first 4 inches of the cabled yoke done!! (there was close to 8 inches done before the 20 month old got ahold of it….grrr…)

  201. My Fear was sewing up seams whenever I could I would knit or try to knit something up in the round. But this year I tried one pattern that to close I had to sew up the seams. I’ve used that pattern nine times in the year so I have plenty of practice sewing up seams. I am no ready to work on a sweater.

  202. I’ve been knitting for a half century now (aran, fair isle, lace, etc.) and have been knitting socks for over a decade now (the most complex garment I’ve knitted so far), and my real fear was gloves (all those fingers!). I made a huge inroad and knit my daughter-in-law some fingerless gloves with instructions for a gusseted right & left thumb, courtesy of Smokin’HotNeedles. Great success. I plan to knit beaded gloves this year. Spinning: I took my first spindling class, and after an abyssmal try over a decade ago, and spinning class — and succeeded! A very exciting year for me. Janet

  203. I left the safety of knitting scarves and started a sweater. It is a lace stitch and I did make a few errors, which I was able to figure out and fix. I ordered lovely expensive yarn for it and am still excited about finishing it. I also ordered the pattern and yarn for the circular lace shawl so that I have something waiting in the wings to strive for in my skills. One day I will tackle that project!

  204. Sandi, you look great in photos!

    Those galleries have been soooo helpful and inspirational. One of the things that I really appreciate about Interweave Knits magazine is that the models look like real people. You have a nice mix of slender and buxom models that reflect a healthy cross section of the population.

    My fearless knitting for 2008 was to rework sock patterns to actually fit my and my husband’s feet. We have long slender feet. The circumference at the ball of my foot is 1/4″ narrower than my ankle measurement. For my husband, that difference is a 1/2″. Most sock patterns assume the circumference at the ball of the foot and the ankle to be the same. No wonder my hand knitted socks were always baggy over the foot or tight at the ankle! Now I know to increase at the ankle for toe up, or decrease at the ankle for top down.

    I’m also using sock yarn for more than just socks now. That’s a big step for someone who never knit in anything finer than DK weight.

    Thank you for all the wonderful tutorials and galleries!

  205. I’ve never knit well, but love to crochet. I made my 1st sweater this year and other than mismeasuring the arms by about an inch, it came out perfect. This was the 1st time I’ve ever made anything for myself & am not ready to tackle the more difficult Rowan pattern. Finished 5 scarves in all types of stiches as Christmas presents & actually had one be fought over in the gift exchange @ work. I learned to do crochet cabling – which is WAY cool and will be completing my filet curtain (60×45) in my own designed pattern in time for the CA State Fair. All in all it’s been a great year. Thank you all for your ideas, support and advice. Cheryl

  206. I finally learned how to knit Continental style (cause you hold the yarn like when crocheting) then jumped right in with cables for my first project on my Irish Hiking Arm Warmers, then moved to the Spirogyra mitts, then decided I needed to finally design some crochet patterns. After that, I had one pattern published in the Crochet Liberation Front First Ever Book and then took the huge step of publishing Crochet Uncut, a free online crochet magazine, which includes writing articles, designing patterns, editing, publishing, and whatever else needs doing. I now have six crochet patterns I’ve designed with more on the way. I also started teaching crochet classes at a local yarn store.

  207. I am not completely fearless yet, but getting there. I’m trying to get over my fear of the loose ends. I have made some very nice items, but am always fearful of actually wearing them and having the ends work out. Also, I worry that others will judge me if those nasty little ends start peeking through the stitches. Well, to start getting over this fear, I have been selling items that I have made. Last January, I sold a bunch of Fun Fur scarves. That’s really a challenge for loose ends because there isn’t much in the way of stitches to tuck the ends into. This winter I am making turtleneck dickies and selling them. It’s easier to hide the ends, but there are more of them and the garment takes a bigger beating. So far no complaints. By the end of the winter I may have conquered this fear.

    By the way, if anyone has any really great tips on securing those loose ends I’d love to hear about it.

    Happy Knitting!

  208. I fearlessly knitted my first sweater for my husband. He wanted it extra large because he wanted to felt it (He rides a motorcycle all year round) to make a denser fabric. The fabric came out the thickness he wanted, but now we have to find a child to fit it. πŸ™ Anyway I was happy that it actually looked like a real sweater. I also made my first pair of socks using the magic loop method. After I stopped fighting with the cables and having a death grip on the needles, I now have a really nice pair of socks:) Now on to the next challenge.

  209. I knit my second pair of socks this year and this time, I knit them simultaneoulsy, on two circular needles. What a great way to knit socks! They weren’t too fancy (a pair of hiking socks for my Dad for Christmas) but I really liked the fact that when I was done…. I was DONE. Next year? I will try to make a dent in the stash that I inherited this year from my Mum.

  210. I started off the year being rather fearless. I knit my first and second pair of socks. The first pair were Monkeys by Cookie A. – ( The second pair were BFF socks by Cookie A. – ( The rest of the year wasn’t quite as fearless, but using the Magic Loop technique that I used knitting socks, I was able to start the Hemlock Ring Blanket, which was the first thing that I ever blocked.

    Next year, I hope to complete at least one of the 2 blankets that I have plans to start. I also hope to tackle my first lace project.

  211. I started 2008 and took my first sweater class. I have since knitted three more sweater for myself. Besides wanting to be fearless I wanted to be selfish. I have always knitted things for other and not for myself. In 2009 I am goal oriented to finish two afghans that I started in 2008.

  212. I bought the book on color and loved it! I went on to try lots of cables and did fine with that too. Now I have been convinced to try making socks so that’s a goal in 2009. I have a new wicker clothes basket filled with yarn I have bought at the 50% off sales so I am one happy knitter. I would send a photo but I’m not sure how to do that. Happy knitting everyone.

  213. I have also been more productive this year than ever before – and all in the last two months! I’ve made over 20 hats, crocheted my first beret and my first pair of slippers (then made another!) and actually finished a wraparound cardigan for my daughter – and blocked it (shock horror!)
    The fearless adventure for 2009 will be to knit a pair of socks – but not using circulars as that was an abysmal failure….I’ll be using dpns for the first time..

  214. Joyce – I have been knitting for so long that I didn’t really think I could be fearless. But, this year, 2008, was the year of the sock/stocking. I mastered making socks to the extent that they are always on my needles. And I can finally comfortably do Kitchener stitch,also. I had a 3 year old model who always wanted to be wearing “Joyce socks” to be my test wearer. He convinced me that hand knit socks are truly worth the effort so I moved on to making them for a whole lot of people. I capped the sock year off my designing and knitting Christmas stockings for 3 of my grandsons (1 family). Next year I will continue the grandchild stocking project (since the others are now jealous) and let it then be the year of the lace. I’ve dabbled in it but not given myself over to it.

  215. I ended 2007 by knitting a snowsuit for my infant granddaughter. I began with a pattern that didn’t call for feet, but I wanted her little toes warm so I figured if I could make booties I could add feet . . . and I did. I also don’t like sewing things together much so I made it in the round.
    That’s pretty hard to follow up with my few (3) years of knitting experience. This year, I mastered lace, made up my own pattern for a scarf, and a neck warmer. Hmmm, now how do I beat that in 2009 . . . . maybe I’ll finish the sweater I promised my daughter.

  216. I finally had the courage to enter something in a fair. I entered five items in the Blue Hill, Maine Fair (that’s the fair that was the basis for E.B. White’s Charlotte’s web). AND, with the most amazing beginner’s luck, I won five blue ribbons!!!

  217. Yes, I did try some new things this year. I even finished a few items. Of course it took a while to finish them because I was forever having to unknit and reknit. The problem, you see, is that I developed a hole in the back of my eye which caused some vertical letters to disappear. For instance, the “l” in “slip” would disappear and I was left with “sip,” which I was all too happy to do, making the finished product a bit odd because there’s usually a lot of “sips” in many patterns.

    In July I had surgery to repair the hole in my eye and, unfortunately for the liquor store, many of the vertical letters are back. My “sips” are fewer than before and my finished projects do look a lot better. Of course, joining AA may have helped a lot, too.

  218. I fearlessly entered the Ravelympics and was able to knit my project in the allotted time. It was two (count ’em, two) knitted and felted tote bags with knitted floral decorations. I gave them to my daughter and grand-daughter for Christmas. Also tried a lace sweater – the Henley Perfected – and after many starts and restarts and a few swear-words, I finished it.

  219. I tried to knit a sweater every month. Close – three for my granddaughter (3), one for my grandson (11), three for daughter one (31), two for daughter two (28), one for myself. Oh, well! I became brave enough to knit during meetings at work. Several colleague make sure I have my knitting with me now because I will sit still and listen at those meetings!

  220. I knit several sweaters that actually FIT! I stopped picking patterns just because they looked easy and started chossing patterns that would actually flatter me no matter what the difficulty level. I found out that I am a better knitter than I once thought! Now I look for projects that will challenge me!

  221. No fearless story to share right now (need to think)….but did want to leave a comment that Sandi looks beautiful in the purple sweater and has a great smile – no worries – not all of us look like a rock star in pictures. Pictures often do not display our inner beauty or that twinkle in our eyes….that’s my rational for looking like a muffin with chipmunk cheeks in pictures and I am sticking with it. Happy New Year to all – Catherine

  222. DPNs. and Socks. and actually *finishing* a project (the aforementioned socks…started the first in march, finished in june, started the second 3x through out the year, CO for the last time dec 1st, finished dec 24th)


    This year was a big one for me! I moved from my lovely home in California to Canton, Ohio to help out my folks. Much of my time during the summer was spent in rehab centers and a nursing home where I started my… Crocheted Toilet Seat Cover! Grin! I did it in pieces and when ever someone asked what I was doing, I told them, it was great fun to see their faces!

    Happy New Year! LI

  224. I survived a robbery at a local JoAnn’s and learned how to insert a zipper on a cardigan (with practice I will get better) , seamed up my first cardigan and knitted with beads. In 2009, I would like to take a knitting cruise, learn entrlac, fair isle and shadow knitting.

    Happy New Year!

  225. I fearlessly knit outside my many, many doctor appts, at a cancer survivor retreat, while waiting for the car to be smog-checked, and at most all family gatherings. I am also wearing my knits & proudly stating, “Why, yes– I did make that!” instead of showing a twisted stitch, uneven seam or other minor flaws. = )

  226. I set a goal of making socks for my entire family for Christmas. That’s one sister, one brother-in-law, one brother, one sister-in-law, 5 nieces, one nephew, one nephew-in-law, and one soon-to-be great niece, along with Mom and Dad. And I met my goal before Thanksgiving!

  227. This year I was inspired to learn how to knit, and with the help of this website I taught myself how to do it! I made scarves (everyone’s beginning project) for my family for Christmas and have now bought my first ball of lace weight wool and going to attempt a column of leaves shall now! NP

  228. Inspired by the yarn I purchased at the Maryland Sheep and Wool Festival, I designed and am knitting a cable cardigan (in Cestari aran yarn) and another cardigan I’ve modified from a 1944 pattern, in Brooks Farm Yarn Acero. Your magazine’s article on how to calculate sleeve caps has been a great help. No pictures yet – but when I’m finished, I’ll post the results!

  229. I acquired my first computer & Internet access in early 2008 & learnt to use the Net to look for knitting info & the computer to make stitch charts. From the Net I learnt Magic Loop Knitting, and have made several pairs of two-at-a-time socks, plus a pair of fingerless mitts – knitted from the top down to get the colour sequence right (yes, I also learnt to make dyed sock blanks). Now I can teach other people the techniques &/or tell them how to find them on the Internet. And I joined Ravelry.

  230. This year I learned to knit socks on double pointed needles.
    My fearless thing was I purchased some llama fleece from my
    cousins Llama farm and had yarn made at Frankenmuth, Michigan. I call it Llama-MI-A. I have Lacey Llama (lace wt)
    and Sock-it-to-MI Llama (sock/fingering wt).Tomorrow I sign
    up for a class to knit 2 socks at a time on 2 circular needles. I also want to do some lace knitting.2009 will be

  231. I too overcame my fear of stranded knitting by making a fair isle hat for every member of my family. I am attaching a photo of 14 of the hats–I finished and gifted 19 in all. It’s wonderful to learn a new technique and grow as a knitter!

  232. I learned how to felt this year so for Christmas each of my 4 sisters got felted purses. My first project was a knitting tote for me and it turned out wonderful so then I went on to smaller items like purses. I am totally hooked on felting.

  233. Several things I faced this year;
    I learned how to magic loop, which when all was said and done was so darn easy that if I’d known, I would have learned a long time ago!
    I faced my fear of large projects and knitted the Kenobi Jacket and then went on to face my fear of complicated stitching and knit the Red Riding Hoodie which turned out gorgeous!
    I also faced my fear of cables and knitted several items that used various cabled patterns and ended up developing my own pattern with cables for manly wrist warmers!
    I faced my fear of lace kntting as well as following a chart and tackled the Fabulous Filigree Scarf. I ended up knitting 2 of them and I’m well on my way to conquering reading charts!
    I faced my fear of belonging to a knitting group by joining Ravelry! (I always thought my left-handed knitting wasn’t very good and would get laughed at by real knitters) Before I hear the hue and cry, I’m sorry! That’s how substandard I thought my knitting was! πŸ™‚
    So overall, this year was wonderful for me knitwise.
    Happy New Year everyone!

  234. I have been knitting most of my life, but really wanted to be able to make my own yarn, so I took a spinning class, and away i went. I have spun my own yarn (using core-spinning technique) and knitted two hats from that yarn. Then I learned how to spin silk–heaven! I then plied the silk with some merino and have the most luscious yarn that I think may have to grace my neck in a simple scarf–we’ll see. This coming year I would like to finally take on cables–over 35 years of knitting and I’ve never turned a cable-can you imagine?!

  235. I am a fairly new knitter. My mom taught me to knit a few years ago but I have only knitted scarves or dish clothes – something I didn’t really have to think about. I was afraid to try something that had any more detail to it. I finally decided that I could do it – people learn something new all the time, right? So I just finished my first hat and I love it. It had a pretty easy design but I am so proud that I finished it, it looks good and I learned to do something new!

  236. I entered something I knit into the State Fair. It was really hard to let someone that I’m sure has years and years of experience go over my sweater and judge my work. I’ve only been knitting for about 4 years. There were piles and piles of knitting entered and I won honorable mention in my class! I can’t wait for next year…

  237. Wow, so amazing to see so much fearlessness!

    My fearless moments included:

    Getting over my fear of frogging.

    Starting my first lace project.

    Starting a sweater that requires steeking.

    Knitting my first gansey sweater; the fearless part was putting it together! Thanks to my friend Sally for sitting with me and letting me just figure things out with her right there doing her own sweater so I could ask her questions.

    Learning to upload pictures to Ravelry (and to KnittingDaily!) . Or perhaps not!

    Here’s to a fearless 2009!

  238. I did knit the perfect sweater for myself after ripping the sleeves for a closer fit. Thanks for the encouragment and the ease instructions! I knitted socks for the first time, got hooked and knitted a dozen pairs for my family. I even designed my own pattern combinations! I received a Victorian Lace book as a giftso lace will be my 2009 project.

  239. What a year it has been! I tackled intarsia (R2D2 hat for my husband), knitting on two circulars (fingerless gloves for myself), my first vest (a gift for myself!) and my first hat-in-the-round is on my needles.

    Thank you for all the inspiration and guidance. Fearless is a bit easier with a good support team!!

  240. I learned to use dpns. I learned to knit socks and have made about 10 pairs so far. I did my first lace project. I attempted to knit intarsia but have thus far failed miserably…..something to perfect in 2009 I guess.

  241. At the beginning of 2008, I was knitting a pair of socks and lost my 5th DP. We didn’t have a local yarn shop, so I checked Michaels and JoAnn’s, but they didn’t have the right size. So after ordering them from a shop by phone, and having to wait 3 days to finish my project, it occured to me that I could be so FEARLESS as to open a yarn shop in my home town! And, just last month, I did it!!! PURL IN THE PINES in Flagstaff, AZ is up and running…what an amazing year it has been. Life will never be the same~

  242. This year I started knitting fingerless gloves. I had taught myself to knit when I was in my 20’s, but hadn’t done much knitting for quite awhile. So making fingerless gloves was very new to me.

    As a crocheter, I became very fearless this year by trying my hand at designing fingerless gloves. I now have the pattern up for sale on Ravelry. It’s called Pretty In Pink. This is a picture of my design:
    Pretty In Pink

    It was used as a CAL in the Ravelry group Fingerless Glove Fanatics of which I am a member. I also designed another pair of half finger gloves that I’ve put up for free at Ravelry.

    We are doing a Mystery CAL at the FGF group and all of the patterns are designers in the group. I have March and just finished designing a pair of gloves with a cable that I hope everyone enjoys.

  243. I have been a knitter for several years. I was taught to tension the yarn either around my neck or through a hook. I have learned it was Portuguese knitting. But I was uncomfortable knitting in this fashion at most LYS’s as I have been told I “knit wrong” This year I found a group to knit with that didn’t think I was weird, and actually asked me to teach them! From these wonderful warm-hearted ladies I learned to knit lace and am now tackling the challenge of cables! (they are so easy I feel foolish to have been so daunted!)
    My biggest challenge will be in the new year, I will be actually teaching classes at a LYS!

  244. This year I completed my first lace project (two, actually) in the form of the Raha Scarf from Knitted Lace of Estonia as a Christmas gift for my sister, and the Swallowtail Shawl from IK that I started last year and didn’t have the guts to finish.
    Both turned out beautifully, and I now consider myself a Knitter rather than just someone who knits. I am Fearless! πŸ™‚

  245. I have knitted for over 30 years but never used a graph, knit lace and never knit a design into an item. I always used patterns with the directions clearly typed out, sometimes not so clear, LOL. This year I made hats for my grandsons for Christmas that had a two color design, followed the graph to achieve the design and started a lace shawl, with beads no less!

    I also learned to knit socks with the magic loop method and started using circular needles almost exclusively instead of straight needles. Makes it easier on the hands with large amounts of stitches.

    See, you can teach an old dog new tricks!

  246. Pat. Joined a Knitting Guild last fall to meet new people & get back to knitting .Made my first pair of socks on DPN & plan to do next pair on a circular needle. Learned Kitchener stitch & have been inspired by my fellow Guild members . Plan to tackle more challenging pattterns & keep on knitting for charity. May have to get more storage space for knitting magazines, books, needles & YARN. Enjoy your daily newsletter.

  247. I started the year with a sweater – I have never tried doing that before – or ever thought I’d actually start one and complete it. Made the Wonderful Wallaby. It turned out GREAT. Then joined an Aran Afghan Knit Group. I learned so much and my knitting skills improved alot. I was a bit intimidated, and still am sometimes. But soon it will be done. It’s really beautiful. Now that project has taken some Fearless Knitting!!!!!!

  248. I love reading about everyone’s “fearless” ventures!!
    I have always been fascinated when I went into yarn stores and saw people knitting the Continental way, so my first venture was learning that; I think it was easy for me to pick up because I’ve always been a crocheter where the yarn is held in the left hand.
    My 2nd venture was learning Fair Isle stitching. I decided to make my husband a scarf for Christmas with his college initials on the ends. I found out it is not done easily when doing in the ROUND… doesn’t look SO bad that I feel the need to start over, but it doesn’t look great. I wrapped the unfinished scarf up and gave it to him – he loves it so I will finish it. I just wish my first Fair Isle project would have turned out nicer – but I learned a valuable lesson in the process!
    I hope everyone has a safe, healthy and HAPPY NEW YEAR!!

  249. I had a whole bunch! I joined a knitting group and met new people who love to knit. I tried my hand at colorwork and am working on a Kaunio cardigan as my first try. I also worked from a chart on a lace project for the first time and knitted with beads. I hadn’t thought about my fearless knitting until you asked, but am really glad to enumerate my efforts!

  250. I have to admit, I honestly thought I was already was a fearless knitter. There is no technique I’m not willing to learn, and if I want to start a project labeled for experienced knitters, I give that a go, too. I figure the worst that can happen is I’ll have to rip it out, right?
    But after reading your article at the beginning of the year, I started thinking there has to be something I’m nervous about and I figured out that I’m afraid of other knitters/crocheters seeing my finished objects and seeing flawed items. (Non-crafters love my finished items, but I figured that it was only because they didn’t know better.) So, I decided to put myself out there and joined Ravelry and you know, now I’m addicted to it. I LOVE IT!! I also opened a shop on to help pay for my yarn stash (yes, so I can buy more).
    So thanks to you, Sandi, I have broadened my horizons, gained confidence in my work, and learned so much about my craft because of it.
    Much love to you!!!

  251. After hemming & hawing for more than a year, I finally broke down & registered for a spinning class. I worked with a drop spindle & my first efforts are about even with underspin, overspin & just right. I look forward to the practice makes better process. I just can’t pick 1 color or type of roving, I need to have it ALL!!

  252. This year I overcame my fear of knitting socks. Not only did I finish a pair for myself, one at a time, but by June I had conquered knitting two socks at the same time on circular needles. Every member of my family received socks for Christmas once I mastered casting-on and knitting the first row.

  253. I found a great textured yarn from Bernat called Bernat Max in a sage green that when worked up it looked like a crocodile/alligator pelt. I combined the”pelts” with LB Homespun in coloway prairie for swamp-water

    I learned how to Tunisian crochet, (check out knit and crochet today website for the directions – season 1) and am now 1/2way done with an afghan that looks like alligators floating in the Florida Everglades, *whew* now that is a little wild!

  254. I did Short Row Bust Darts, embracing my curves. I am very pleased with how the sweater fits.
    I also tackled intarsia on the flap of a bag. Thank goodness felting hides a multitude of sins, but I did get it done, and learned how to do it better the next time.

  255. After two years of only making squares or rectangles, I learned to crochet in a circle. I learned to read a pattern and the crochet world just expanded. I made hats and more hats and then purses. I made stuffed turtles, ladybugs, and bears. I learned the granny square and made a couple of beautiful organic cotton baby blankets. Next year I am challenging myself again: I’m going to make clothing: sweaters and tops. I may even (re)learn to knit!

  256. I didn’t actually start the year with the aspiration of becoming a Fearless Knitter. But things soon diverted to that direction. I saw this gorgeous shawl pattern and just had to try it. So with this one fell swoop of the knitting needles I learned to knit lace, learned to knit with eensy weensy yarn, learned the joyous hand of Tencel, and learned to block too! Well that wasn’t enough so then I decided I was ready to take the leap and learn to do cables. I had been scared of them for no reason. Easy as PI
    Maybe next year I will learn to knit something even more adventurous. ANd I may even break out that drop spindle and roving and learn to spin.
    Knitting DAily had created a fiber monster in me. A good one indeed.

  257. Does starting knitting count? Actually I didn’t know about your challenge as I have only been knitting for a few months and just discovered this place maybe three days ago. But it should count. I learned to knit from a book despite not knowing anyone to help me if I messed up. (They all crochet or do needlepoint.)

  258. Wow. A year of fearless fiber. I taught myself to spin on a spindle, got a wheel, got 2 looms, adn learned to knit and weave with the yarn I made. I dyed my own wool with Kool Aid and took wool and alpaca from off the animal to finished products I wear daily. I am making a sweater for my daughter from yarn I am spinning myself. Not really a pattern as much as a formula, and no real idea how much yarn I will need. I know we will run out of one color before we are done. This is the definition of fearless knitting for me. Now what will I do to top myself next year?

  259. I always thought knitting was so hard. I couldn’t figure out how the yarn stayed on the needles so I never wanted to try, that is until this year. I saw a knitting show on my local PBS station and said to myself “I can do that” and I did. I taught myself the knit stitch and then whent to a local store and learned to purl. I made 24 wash cloths each in a different pattern from my Harmony Guides Knit & Purl book and gave them as Christmas gifts along with some hand-made soaps. I made my mom a shawl from an easy pattern I found in another book and liked it so much, I’m making one for myself out of this beautiful ribbon yarn that reminds me of stained glass. I have a scarf on my fat needles for my brother that will be finished in the next couple of hours. All in all I have completed about 30 projects which is really something for me since I lose interest in something pretty quickly. I just got the bamboo yarn for my first sweater which is done from squares and rectangles. I haven’t tried anything fitted or near as intricate as some of the entries I have read but that will come. I am hooked! Now if I can just quit buying all of this yarn . . .

  260. Well, I’m looking at some of the other comments, and I don’t seem so very fearless… I have been knitting for over 55 years, but have only made one or 2 sweaters that actually fit the way they were supposed to… then in 07, I joined Elizabeth’s Year at Yahoo groups… I did not 1 but 2 sweaters in 07… then in 08, I took the plunge and worked on EZ’s Aran sweater… it was supposed to be a cartigan, but I hate cartigans, so I made a pullover… it was supposed to have a really cool pattern, but I lost my book about 1/15/8, so I lost the really cool pattern… bother!… so I dug out some other pattern books, and came up with my own Aran Pattern… I was AMAZED at how easy it was!!! WHY haven’t I discovered this before! I did all my cables without a cable needle – much easier that way – and the sweater fits me just the way I like my sweaters to fit! So, for 2009, I am going to repeat this sweater, and see what happens… I am looking forward to something great!

  261. Well, let’s see…I completed Ene’s Scarf by Nancy Bush (from Scarf Style) which was lots of fun and knitted up quicker than I expected. I also knitted the Clementine Shawlette and Arrowhead Lace Stole from earlier issues of IK. I am now starting the Bleeding Hearts Stole. The pattern is easy, but the multiple repeats are a bit of a challenge. Oh, and I taught myself entrelac ( I had a blast). My goal this year is to finally knit a sweater. I hope everyone has a wonderful new year. May your yarn never tangle, your stitches never drop, and your gauge always come out perfect. Happy 2009!!

  262. Tamara L
    I knitted my first pair of socks for my grandson and 4 needles. Never thought i could do it. Now i want to learn to knit socks on 2 circular needles. Happy New Year

  263. I had a wonderful knitting year! I’ve always been somewhat fearless, and this year, among other things, I learned 2 new ways to do color pattern (stranded) knitting, I taught knitting classes (a BIG step of faith for me!), so that now about 18 other people know how to knit, and I made my first lace project, a beautiful KAL of a Pansy Triangle Shawl. To top it off, my very “anti-wool” oldest daughter actually asked me to make her a sweater! My motto is O.C.K.I.P.D. which stands for Obsessive Compulsive Knitting in Public Disorder! LOL!

  264. I was so totally fearless that I did all of the following:
    1. Learned make socks on DPNs, then 2 circs, then Magic Loop and now I knit them two at a time.
    2. Bought a spinning wheel and learned to spin.
    3. Started a spindle collection (I’m up to 3) and learned to spindle.
    4. Started a Fiber Arts program at my school (I couldn’t keep all the fun to myself!).

  265. I am a teenage knitter who was basically afraid of making anything beyond socks, fingerless gloves, scarves, and basic hats. Then, I participated in a knitalong that required we knit something mermaid inspired. An idea for a top came to me, but I put it off for weeks, trying to avoid making the garment. Finally, I could stand it no longer. Laying aside all my doubts, I created a strange but lovely top with a cowl neck in Noro, a body done in a mixture of Mohair and a mystery aqua yarn, and only a single tie in the back to bring it all together. The result looked wonderful and I can’t tell you how joyful I felt over this feat. I now look to my first sweater (darn thing is taking forever) with only the knowledge that it cannot conquer me unless I give up. Have a wonderful New Year!
    PS- If you ever care to see the top, pictures are on ravelry. I am CheshireStitch and the project is Mer Top/Scales

  266. I decided to make knitted grocery/shopping bags without a set pattern. So I went to my local Dollar store and would get “yarn” of various types…..mostly those of outdated colors of major manufacturers. And worked out a basic knit/crochet combination pattern. I had to learn less is more, because they stretched a lot. A few became ideal laundry bags. And which would have yarn over lace like patterns and which would be more dense like designs. It was great and I have had many requests for these as gifts.


  267. Today I went to the yarn store I bought my first set of knitting needles in just last December……….
    I told the owner that she helped me start this wonderful new adventure. Without the help of my dear friend Teresa, I would never have become a knitter because I was a very fearful knitter and she kept saying, “Be fearless. It’s just sticks and string. πŸ™‚ ”
    Well, this year I have made scarves, hats, a caplet, a sock…yes, I have to knit the other one πŸ™‚ and just this weekend, fingerless gloves.
    I really can not believe it.
    This weekend, the one year anniversary of my knitting adventure, I taught my daughter to knit and purl. That is the ultimate reward for being a fearless knitter.
    I love it!!!!

  268. Today I went to the yarn store I bought my first set of knitting needles in just last December……….
    I told the owner that she helped me start this wonderful new adventure. Without the help of my dear friend Teresa, I would never have become a knitter because I was a very fearful knitter and she kept saying, “Be fearless. It’s just sticks and string. πŸ™‚ ”
    Well, this year I have made scarves, hats, a caplet, a sock…yes, I have to knit the other one πŸ™‚ and just this weekend, fingerless gloves.
    I really can not believe it.
    This weekend, the one year anniversary of my knitting adventure, I taught my daughter to knit and purl. That is the ultimate reward for being a fearless knitter.
    I love it!!!!

  269. I taught myself to knit many years ago but became frustrated with the amount of time it took me to complete a project. I can crochet much faster so the afghan I started for myself waited a few years for me to complete it. Recently a friend of mine reintroducted me the joy of knitting and I retired so this year has been a year of crafting. My grandsons all received knitted hats and scarves for Christmas, my granddaughter received a poncho and hat, and I knitted scarves for my daughter and daughter-in-law, My most special project has to be mittens and a pair of booties I made for a baby ensemble. I decided to address my fear of double point needles and try the booties and was so pleased with the result. I think I’m ready for socks for gifts in 2009.

  270. I was a fearless knitter this year by actually sitting down and learning how to knit. I don’t have the basics down completely, but I’m getting there. After years of being a casual crocheter, I’ve decided that knitting is just as much fun. And as soon as I finish a basic scarf I’m working on, I’m going to be really fearless and try a reversable stitch hubby’s aunt has been playing with that looks very easy.

  271. I have knitted my first piece of adult clothing! And it included my first ever cable! I have been knitting baby clothes for years.

    Also I have gotten ove my fear of being seen as a bit of a nerd for knitting! My close friends and family know that i knit, but I took the plunge and took my knitting to work for night shift. And I didn’t get the negative comments that I thought I would. in fact I was surprised to find that a lot of my colleagues also knit. And even some of the younger guys were interested in what I was making. Surprise surprise!

  272. I started and completed my first sweater. Did the final weaving in and steam blocking last night, 12-28-08. I started in the spring, got quite bit down and set it aside for warm weather projects and ‘life’. I was seaming in the ends in October, and somehow ended up with a hole in the darn thing. And there it sat until yesterday. I patched the darn thing and did the finishing.

    My fears were that it wouldn’t fit- it does, despite my obsessive swatching and tight knitting. I also obsess about sleeve length (long arms). So I added length and they were too long- so I cut off the extra length and hemmed the sleeves.

    In knitting as with the rest of life, when I run into a problem, I use the avoidance tactic- set down the sweater and work on something else till I’ve thought about it and am ready to deal with it. The Sunday knitting group was was supportive and did not nag. I think I will make a surprise visit to the Tuesday group wearing the sweater.

  273. Knitting is my weight loss strategy–down 30 lbs so far, just from knitting rather than snacking. Local Joann Fabrics closed, with everything on deep discount. I learned to knit from a book (from the sale) in May on the way home from our anniversary trip to Yellowstone Nat’l Park. Spent the summer reading and implementing Elizabeth Zimmerman’s techniques, 2-color up to 6-color knitting–although quite remedial. Prayer shawls, baby coat for donating; socks for family members, scarves & hats, dishcloths, sweaters and a poncho for Christmas gifts. My gift to me is an Einstein coat (I feel brilliant!) made with Plymouth Baby Alpaca Grande in a black tweed. Added pockets (OMG–cut my knitting for afterthought pockets w/help from local yarnshop goddess Ellen), and a hood. It’s perfect for San Francisco wintertime. I have about 90 minutes/day in a vanpool, with 4 other knitters. Yep, I’d say I’ve boldly, fearlessly entered into the knitting world.

  274. I just finished the gathered pullover, my first attempt at set in sleeves, and the sewing didn’t come out too bad. I was, until December 22, very pregnant, which made for interesting guess-measurements for this to fit afterward, and to top it all off my yarn did not meet gauge so I swatched and swatched and swatched. Success though! I also bought a drop spindle this year, had a blast with it. And my husband gave me a beautiful Kromski tensioned lazy kate so I can continue to fearlessly spin! Oh yeah, and i finished 2 or 3 pairs of toe up socks of my own design.

  275. I’d been knitting for just a year in May when I started my first lace project: (

    Then in June, I learned the Magic Loop method. It wasn’t too long before I merged the two techniques and made this: (

    This year, I made my first pair of socks (using Magic Loop, of course) and made a Victorian Lace shawl, with a knitted-on border, for my best friend.

  276. I had a VERY brave knitting year. I did lace with lace yarn. I figured out triangular shawls, and knitted-on edging. I made a shawl of beautiful mohair, and actually got paid for it! And, most proudly, I made ALL of my Christmas gifts this year. I also finished Mystery Shawl 4 just a few weeks after the first group did. Yay, me!!!

  277. I started and finished a sweater done on circular needles with no seams. It was great to finish something that big. I also learned how to felt hats and slippers, something I was really afraid of. Suprise it is actually fun to watch it change sizes. I also got the hang of magic loop knitting which is so much easier then double pointed needles.

  278. I sat by the window on a particularly cold morning early this month while at the computer doing my usual keyboarding and the tops of my hands and wrists were getting colder and colder and started to hurt. I rubbed them and then thought how great it would be to have my avid knitting daughter knit me a pair of fingerless mitts. She graciously did as an early Christmas gift. As the month drew on and friends and neighbors dropped by, I proudly showed them my daughter’s beautiful work. I let them try the mits on and they fit each and every one of them. So, I downloaded the free pattern, and knit a pair for each of them but it just kept mushrooming! I have 3 pair more to make after knitting the 3 pair for Christmas. Even my husband liked how they felt and our daughter knit him a pair in a more masculine pattern that was also a free download.
    One of my friends has 5 grown daughter and 2 grown sons and when they came home for Christmas saw the mitts and all wanted some too so I’ve sent the links to my friend to get her needles out and dust them off and more hands and wrists will be warmed in the near future!
    I tried new yarns, pima cotton and pima cotton blends from Peru; a sampler pack I bought in summer. I even tried superwash wool; all firsts for me! I altered the pattern a bit and changed needle sizes and yarn weights and even kept my cool when I had to frog often. It was a relaxing and enjoyable venture, for the most part, that has proven not to be the last! I am a fearless knitter and it’s still 2008 for another couple of days! Who knows what more I might add to this venture.

  279. After crocheting 17 hats for a holiday sale (profits going to a good cause) I got on my bicycle. I made intimate contact with the asphalt and the greatest injury was to my left hand, the one I use the most. Surgery followed and now pt. No more knitting, crocheting or sewing for months. I got beautifuk yarn as a holiday gift and almost started crying, The fearless part is that I know I will get my hand back and be able to make beautiful things again, that all it takes is patience and perseverance and that sometimes the most fearless thing to do is to accept help and slow down.

  280. I have been knitting for just over one year… and the first and only thing I have knit is socks… socks, socks and more socks… I found an old “how to knit” book I bought years ago… I playe around learning the stitches for a couple day then decided to knit something…. ah,, I know I will knit socks… I now, understand , that socks are not usually the first project for a new knitter… but I didn’t want to bother with a boring scarf…so I went on-line and found a step by step lesson in knitting socks… and followed it… What do you know they turned out…
    My friend who had been knitting forever… but she never learned how to create socks… so I taught her… now she is hooked on socks too…
    Two days ago, I started my very first sweater… my sweet hubby bought me the yarn for Christmas… and I am excited about creating my very own hand knit sweater… So far, So good… Keep your fingers crossed….

  281. I started writing and selling my own crocheting patterns. So far 3 bags, a wine sack and a hat collar and cuff set. It’s been a huge challenge sitting down and actually writing down what I’m doing. Every detail. Trying to describe a process with clarity isn’t always easy. Iv’e also learnt a little bit of hair-pin crochet followed a pattern for Irish crocheted flowers from a reprint of a 1908 publication and I’ve just bought 3 Russian crocheting magazines that have lots of graphs but no English. Very exciting. Very inspinging.
    I sell through Etsy –

  282. I took up knitting for the first time this month. I’ve been doing threadcrafts of various kinds all my life – I literally cannot remember learning to crochet – but up until now the one thing I had never done was knit. Mind you, most of my adult life I’ve lived in Dallas, where it’s too hot to wear sweaters except for 2-3 weeks out of the year (and those days not consecutive! πŸ™‚ But I’ve moved a bit north, and while I’ve no clue what prompted it, I suddenly decided to take up knitting. Bought some yarn and a few pairs of needles in different sizes, and off I went. Made myself a scarf to replace an old wool lace one. Made a shawl for my best friend (managed to get her to pick out her own yarn without her knowing at all!) Made a scarf and hat for my 14-year-old daughter who lives in Kentucky (even figured out how to make a hat out of the scarf pattern since I couldn’t find a matching set that I wanted to make). And now I’m about 2/3 of the way through my very first sweater! SO EXCITED! I made my own double-pointed needles from dowel rods (found a how-to video online) and I’ve started a pair of socks out of fingering wool…now that’s going to be a challenge. Tight, tight stitches in the round.

    Next thing to tackle: hubby wants a sweater. With cables. YAY! (Get the idea I love doing new things?)

  283. Annabelle wrote re: How Were You a Fearless Knitter in 2008?
    I became a grandma for the first time last April and knit booties and a hat for our grandson. Then when fall arrived and my daughter mentioned needing mittens for the baby, I went searching for easy patterns. Found some in my stash after an extensive look, including even in some stores, and started and better yet, COMPLETED a pair for him by Thanksgiving! That is the most “fearless” part for me–the finishing. I even figured out a crocheted cord to connect the mittens together through the sleeves–up one arm around the back and down the other sleeve! Small potatoes for some but an accomplishment for me!

  284. i started to read all the fearless knitters stories and felt overwhelmed by your efforts. I have been knitting for years and have tried lots of different techniques and had to think hard on what I tried differntly this year mainly spinning for a purpose trying to get it even and fine enough for lace. I designed spun and dyed and knitted alace stole for my sister in laws birthday and had it finished aweek early with only 6 inches of yarn left over. mainly in 2009 I should try knitting a sweater without a pattern since I dont normally try that I do do lot so changes but not completly on my own, I did design and knit three three differnt shawls but that is easy no real shaping, so bettter try in 2009 and more spinning for apurpose and figure out my way correctly around raverly I need more knowldege of how to get around it and how to post photos and talk to people I need that. Elizabeth (Aus) fireythreads

  285. I had the courage to change a stitch that I didn’t like. It was a simple lace pattern but for me to change anything that a professional has written is really mega -and I was so pleased with the result.
    But please keep up the encouragement to be fearless. I want to launch into my stash (belt tightening time) and work out a pattern copying a shop-bought garment that I already own. I know I’ll do the maths about 2000 times and even then I’ll worry until it’s 2/3 done. So good luck and thanks to you oh Fearless Ones – keep being an inspiration!

  286. I took a weekend-long “learn to spin”workshop AND I made my first top-down raglan sweater! I also learned to crochet and my goal for 2009 is to make a crocheted garment, and also to be more fearless. I don’t have a lot of knitting time so I tend to fall back on easy mindless projects. In 2009 I am going to use patterns that challenge me.

  287. I opened an Etsy sotre selling my hand dyed yarns. It takes alot of guts to think you’re ‘good enough’ at dyeing to actually sell things to people. I still cant sometimes beleive that I have the Chutzpah to do this!!! My sote BTW is
    Black Cat Fibres

    I also learnt to SPIN!!!! first on aspindle, then I got a econd hand wheel like a LouetS10 but made in Holland. I’m getting used to it and next I have to try plying my hand spun.

    I also Braved my shyness and went to a knitting group!!!!

  288. I learned to knit socks! I’ve been knitting for years, but I always thought knitting socks was too complicated or difficult to learn. This year, I thought “Wait a minute! Sock-knitting is so popular that it can’t be miserably difficult.” So I went to my LYS, signed up for a tutoring session in sock knitting, and the rest is history (about ten pair of socks and counting–I still need to finish a couple of late Christmas gifts). Maybe I should add buying a remarkable amount of sock yarn!

  289. I conquered my fear by starting a knitting group despite social anxieties. And then my group members showed me that I have been twisting all my stitches, My knitting is much prettier now, and the Cobblestone I’m knitting for my son is GORGEOUS.

  290. With the help and encouraging of a lovely group of ladies who do knit daily and meet every Tuesday, and an awesome knitting store, I have adventured to knitting socks. Wow that is scary. Also, have completed raglan sleeves and a striped scarf using 2 colors and having a gorgeous finished edge of slip stitches. I have completed half of a ribwarmer, teaching directional knitting, another challenging mental exercise. All of these projects have been this year and really would not have been fearless without the incredible help of all you wonderful helps in Knitting Daily and locally. Oh yes, I am ready to tackle spinning and dyeing, a 35 year old dream of mine. I even had a wheel at one time, but sold it, frustrated at not able to find someone to teach me. Thanks to all the you wonderful women and soft, rich colored yarns, that never cease to inspire me.

  291. I made two sweaters (okay, really shrugs, but they are nice). One fits perfectly, one is a little big (but still looks good). I am working on my 3rd and have yarn for a cardigan in my stash that is next. I am actually wearing them and getting compliments on them. I also started making things for friends and family again. My first tries were not as warmly appreciated as I would have liked (my perception???), but I made a few more gifts that seemed to be well liked.

  292. I don’t fear much about knitting, but this year was the first for me to knit with my own handspun yarn:)
    I have changed a pile of barn-smelling, raw fleece into several pairs of socks for myself and my kids, using hand-made tools only – full guerilla job, and it felt – and feels, too – great πŸ™‚

  293. I learned how to knit 2 socks on 2 circs and am thrilled I no longer have one sock syndrome. It seems to take just a little longer than doing one sock, but when you’re done, you have a pair. Breat feeling of instant gratification.

    -Lisa F

  294. I have learned how to add repeats to a pattern so that the finished project actually looks good on me and fits the way it should. There is no stretching across a flabby tummy or arms in order to make the garment fit my frame. It’s so unfortunate to go to all that time and effort on an otherwise lovely sweater pattern, take a picture and see that the finished results are less than I anticipated.

    I learned in a fashion design class that you will actually look slimmer in a garment that skims the body than a garment fighting to contain your girth. And the yarn doesn’t get hopelessly stretched beyond it’s limits! I want my garments to reflect my knitting style not my body flaws.

  295. I taught myself how to do a cable a scarf for my daughter and my hair stylist using the pattern from the One Skien book (yes, for Interweave Press). I also made my son the cable socks/slippers. It’s great fun and so easy.

    I also learned to use the Magic Loop for making socks. Taught myself in about 15 minutes and it goes so much faster. Suzanne C

  296. Yes I was. I knitted 3 baby sweaters for my friend Julie Sagatelian’s triplets. I began them before the babies were born in order to help me pray for their safe arrival. Praise God that they arrived looking great. I will attempt to add the picture of them in their sweaters!
    Marilyn Richter
    707 Snapdragon Street
    Encinitas, CA 92024

  297. You know, I didn’t actually *feel* fearless while I was knitting. I felt like I was getting in over my head and making up far too many blue words. I knitted for about three months four years ago, and only really took it back up last year, but not in any major way until maybe this spring? Since then I started doing lace (way easier than I’d thought it would be.) on socks (which I also hadn’t done before, and even the toe-up heels sort of get me, but that’s just an excuse to get more practice, right? I made up a pattern for a cardigan using lace-weight yarn with a crochet edge in a doll size, and made up patterns for a few other things. Most of them are even finished. The most challenging was probably the Extermiknit! pattern for a knitted Dalek, which used bobbles (swore I’d never do them again, and then did) colour work (not as hard as I’d thought it would be) and figuring out how to make a mistake look like it was actually supposed to be that way. Looking back, I’m actually kind of surprised.


  298. I tackled the dpn monster and won, I learned I can use 4 or 5 needles at once, I learned to knit socks and actually had three pairs done for christmas. For 2009 I want to make my first sweater, and hopefully it will fit.


  299. I was still a beginning knitter going into 2008 so I decided to move beyond squares and have made an afghan and backed it with a quilt top. I made shopping bags for my brothers wedding, and started a baby outfit. I tried dpn with a baby cap and started the Tree of Life afghan working with cables for the very first time. All in all it has been a year of firsts!!! I can’t wait until 2009 the first project will be lace!!!

  300. I started out 2008 by finding out my granddaughter is having a baby. Light Bulb went off!!!! I knitted a layette using cables. Then, I saw some self striping yarn and decided to knit socks. They came out perfect if I do say so myself. Then, a dear friend of mine can’t crochet anymore, and she had started an afghan for her granddaughter, so I told her I would finish it for her. Am still working on it as it will fit a queen size bed. Then, my daughter wanted me to crochet dresses for my granddaughter’s dolls. I finished them for Christmas along with a pillowghan and another doll that I dressed. I’m going to take a break, but not for long as I am spinning my poodle’s hair along with alpaca hair to make me something I don’t have a clue of yet. I’ll let you know as soon as I have enough to do something with.

  301. I learned how to knit this year(started early fall) and so far have made a dishcloth and a meandering rib scarf that is almost finished. In 2009, I’m going to try my hand at socks and maybe a sweater!

  302. I made my first ever pair of socks. They were beautiful and even fit. A first for me after 51 years of knitting. Various comments included, “Wow, they look professional, like you bought them in a store.”

    Happy Knitting,
    Michelle W.

  303. I leaned to knit socks for the first time. I used the double loop method. I was surprised how easy it was. I knitted 2 and a half pair (finishing now), and was pleased with the results.
    Happy New Year to all…Carol M

  304. My new year’s resolution last January was to learn to knit. So, I stopped in to my local yarn store (the ladies are wonderful) and got my first lesson. So far I have done two scarves, atleast 8 dishcloths, a beret in the round (love those Addi Turbos), a set of cap and booties, 4 premie project caps, and I am currently working on two pairs of socks. I use the dishcloths to learn new stitches and have even done a cabled one. I am so glad that the ladies at the yarn store are there to help me when I have a problem or drop a stitch.
    Happy New Year everyone and proceed with no fear!!!
    Connie G

  305. My New Year’s resolution for 2008 was to expand my skills. I attempted socks for the first time and became a believer in the Knitting Circles around socks method. (I’m on my 4th pair). I tried Entralac – Love it. I’m in the process of working on a shawl in some lovely blues. I even tried knitting lace from a chart – I definately need things spelled out for me, but I finished a pretty wrap in a multi-green Koigu.

    This year I really need to conquer the Kitchner stitch πŸ˜›

    Happy New Year – TerriB

  306. I love to knit socks. This year, thanks to Ann Budd’s “Getting Started Knitting Socks”, I taught myself the long tail cast-on (I wish I’d learned that one before starting my sock-knitting career!) and how to knit socks using Magic Loop. I’m in the process of learning how to knit 2 socks on 1 circular.

    I’ve also taken a knitting workshop on how to choose colours and knit fair-isle, and at the same time, had a quick lesson in drop-spindling.

    For 2009 I’d like to learn toe-up socks and some lace.

    Happy New Year!

  307. I learned to spin. Not very well, but I LEARNED.

    After looking up several sites, I went and bought supplies to make a drop spindle, made that, and my mother bought me some roving for my birthday (which was around the time that I decided to start spinning). It’s going to take some practice (all right, a lot of practice), but it’s also a lot of fun.

    Another area I was fearless in is that I’ve started designing my own patterns, both by looking at something and going “Oooooh, I could do that for less than the $200 they want!” (, and at the prompting of a friend that she would use a hat more than a purse- but why not make a dual-purpose hat-purse? (That one is on the drawing board.)

    My pictures:
    For my Indianapolis Colts loving friend:
    Image and video hosting by TinyPic

    Image and video hosting by TinyPic

  308. I never thought of myself as a fearless knitter until you asked what I had done. This year I felted my first project (a small tote bag), knitted my first pair of mittens, signed up for a KAL class and attend it regularly, and I knit my first garment – a vest. 2008 also brought Knitting Daily which encourages me every day to keep at it and be fearless.
    Thanks, Sandi.

  309. I memorized how to knit socks using a simple railroad rib pattern. I can knit socks pattern free!
    I started knitting Neibling lace, but have not gotten very far into it.
    I have knitted early and often, so I have completed more stuff. I am still leery of sweaters because of my body size, so that is my challenge for next year!

  310. 2008 was an exciting knitting year for me. This was the year I decided it was time to advance beyond squares and rectangles. Although I did manage to knit up a few dishcloths, a scarf, and a placemat, the “big” projects for me included apparel. In the spring of the year, I knitted my very first sweaters. Since I have two children at home, I couldn’t very well limit myself to one at a time, so I chose to start, and work on two at a time. My 9 year old daughter was thrilled with her lilac colored crew neck sweater, and my 10 year old son was equally tickled with his green hoody.

    Next, I decided to try my hand at knitting an adult garment. Realizing it’s never too early to knit Christmas gifts, I chose a pattern for a top intended for my 28 year old daughter. I’m pleased to announce I recieved a note from her saying it fit perfectly! I couldn’t be happier!

    Then came summer. I decided I needed to knit some summer tops for my youngest children. I found a lacy pattern I thought perfect for my daughter, and she chose the yarn. It turned out great! Next, I needed to knit a summer top for my 10 year old son. I searched and searched to no avail. This is when I decided it was time for my next big surge ahead.

    My son’s summer shirt ended up being my very first original design! It was also my first attempt at knitting a placket. I was just thrilled at how it turned out, and even more tickled to see how much he liked it! Now I just need to go through all the notes I scribbled, crossed out and changed, and see if I can manage to get the pattern written out! (Photo included in Flickr set above)

    I’m really looking forward to seeing what direction my needles take me in 2009.

  311. I had a great year!
    Knit a lace shrug
    Tried felting and now I’m hooked
    Followed a graph
    Knit a felted bag in the round using Continental method
    Trying sock with the magic loop method now
    Taught daughter 4 needle mittens (rough job she is 15)

    Started a group of knitter and WOW have I learned alot!
    IThere is still alot to conquer….2009 bring it on

  312. After more than 35 years of knitting experience I challenged myself to a steeking project!! Though the actual project started in 2007 the “steeking” part, which I wasn’t sure I’d be able to do…I thought for sure I’d end up frogging it or putting it aside in fear! Prior to this I’d never even thought of putting scissors to my knitting…seemed like a violation to even think of “cutting” it!
    You can see it here:
    as well as on Ravelry (my id is – spinnerknitter)

    The sad news is…after a 7 month search for the perfect buttons and getting the opportunity to wear it a few times (3 to be exact), my husband washed it, shrinking it to the size of a shrug!!! I still can’t bear to look at it, one day I’ll make something out of it…

  313. I mastered cables AND lace. I have only been knitting about 10 yrs and still consider myself a beginner. Bored with making scarves and afghans, I decided I was ready for something new. I took several classes and became hooked on cables and lace. Some of the women in the knitting group I belong to were amazed. Some have been knitting for over 20 yrs and never have tried lace so they were really impressed. I just enjoy the complexity of the patterns, the feel of the yarn, and of course the finished product. I feel like I have really accomplished something when I am done.

  314. I have a youth mitten pattern that I always use. The kids i knot for have grown & I needed a mitten just a bit larger. I searched & searched for patterns and just wasn’t happy with what I was finding, so I revised my pattern. I studied the adjustment already on the pattern for child to youth sizes & then continued the pattern. They were a great success. Just a little bigger, but not too big and adultish. I really felt confident when i saw how well they turned out.

  315. I’ve knit longer than I’ve written in cursive or done long division, but… SOCKS always scared me. Not because of the double-pointed needles, they’ve been by my side for nearly two decades. Just something about socks intimidated me. So this year I just went for it. Surprisingly easy and horribly addictive!

  316. jrssews

    I knitted my first pair of socks. It was my first experience with short-rowing. Although this is not knitting, I did some fearless crochet as well when I crochted myself a summer weight sweater that fits my 5’9″ 240 lb frame! Can’t wait for it to get warm enough to wear it because it was already cold when I finished.

  317. I became a sock knitting maniac. Took a class at my LYS to learn how to knit a sock on 2 circular needles. Then taught myself how to knit them on 4 dpns. Then I wanted to knit 2 socks at the same time on 2 cirulars, had a bit of a hard time, but found a good how to DVD and bought a book and I’ve been knitting everybody socks. I don’t think I can wear store bought socke anymore.

  318. Taught some mums at school to knit. Knitting in public has never been an issue for me, but it was wonderful to see others become enthusiastic knitters. I knitted socks – my daughter can’t stand seams, and wears bought socks inside out. She loves hand-knitted ones. Have now officially become sock-mad and have knitted my son some socks ready to start school. I didn’t use a pattern, just Nancy Bush’s guidelines from “Folk Socks”, so it didn’t matter about matching yarn to a specific pattern. That is an amazing book. I also made gloves for the first time, too, for one of my sisters. That is soooooo much fun.

  319. I made up my first ever pattern for a sweater just a plain boat neck one wtih rolled hem and cuffs but the yarn was spectacular and of varied thickness and required plain.
    I knitted my first ever thing that wasn’t for me( a moss stitch scarf) and then did more. I learned to knit in the round on a hat early in the year and then moved on to gloves that turn into mittens in worsted weight in multiple sizes from mens extra large to ladies small adjusting a sock weight yarn pattern as I went, and have embraked on an elbow length pair with cables for me with more adjustments along the way. I also taught some one else to knit in the round on circulars and dpns from a straight needle pattern.
    The gloves are slightly adictive.
    I have also been knitting in public on the mine site where I work. As a results I have had several requests for gloves.

  320. I was a fearless knitter because I designed a vest in sparkly, inexpensive red yarn for my tap dancing recital. Yes, I am in that Over 50 group and I am in my 8th year of tapping. How fun to combine two of my favorite passtimes! I first knitted a strip in stockingnet approx 3 inches wide so it would fit around the way I wanted it to. I joined both ends to create a circle. I then just picked up stitches on the lower edge of the band with circular needles and let my mind wander and design as I went. When I was satified with the length, I cast off. I then picked up stitches on the upper edge of the band and designed the bust and neckline. How much fun it was to wear and to have my recital picture taken in. I am on the end with the chunky fringe dress (which I designed also).
    If you can dance in front of a crowd of 400, you can knit fearlessly. Watch out 2009!!! Wynnette


  321. I knitted a vest that actually turned out and fits great! I also started a challenging cabled wrap that I’ve wanted to do for years. 2009 will be the year of my first sweater. Thanks for the challenge!

  322. I’ve just been at this a for a short time, so I have a lot of fears!

    I am very proud of a cape that I made – my own design based on a capelet pattern in Interweave Knits – made it longer, made ‘real’ cables – 2 on each side, and made it longer. Got lots of complements.
    Made my first all wool sweater – a big one – long sleeved cardigan out of bottle green Classic wool by Patons. Have to sew up one last seam and then it’s time to block -what a way to start the new year – that will be a ‘first.’

    My sister sent me a “sock kit” consisting of hand died yarn (died by my niece – ) georgous pale lilac sapling weight (sport) size 2 dpn’s and a pattern for cabled socks. I’m using a practice yarn first to train myself using toothpicks to knit in the round….- not too bad -Patons Kroy Socks in Muslin. It’s turning out to be georgous – I’m so proud that I will be able to wear my practice socks! I only had to rip out twice. This yarn is forgiving. I’m in the process of turning my first heel.


  323. I LEARNED to knit in March (been a crocheter for 25+ years). And became addicted. My first project was a bib – my second a multidirectional sweater. I tackled the kitchener stitch, learned to turn the heel of a sock, did an attached i-cord, made lace, did cables, used dpn’s… and so much more. A lot of firsts this year. I can’t remember how many projects I have done since learning to knit, but I have over 50 in my Ravelry account. So I’ve had busy needles!

  324. I wouldn’t call myself a fearless knitter/crocheter… However, I made my first pair of mittens, 2 funky hats (Kitty Kat Hat from Stitch ‘n Bitch and The Frog Beanie from Crochetroo), AND a lace bookmark that needed blocking (it’s my first lace anything ..).

  325. I wouldn’t call myself a fearless knitter/crocheter … However, I did make my first pair of mittens (the thumb gusset almost made me cry), 2 funky hats (Kitty Kat Hat from Stitch ‘n Bitch and the Frog Beanie from Crochetroo), and a nice lace bookmark that required blocking (my first lace item and I had to block it — also a first).

  326. My challenge was to knit a fitted sweater. My project of choice was the Mirabella Cardigan from the spring issue of Interweave Knits. I have started it, but it’s not yet finished. I only have to complete the left front, block, & assemble. It should be ready for this spring. πŸ™‚

  327. I finally tackled cables, got over my fear of sweaters after making 3 shapeless blobs 4 years ago and started designing. Am a completely fearless knitter? No, but I’m firmly on the path of not being scared to trying something new in knitting.

  328. I don’t call myself a fearless knitter because I haven’t tackled many things yet, but this year I’ve finished 3 pullover sweaters, 4 pairs of socks, 2 hats, and 3 scarves. I’ve never done that much before, and I find myself getting more addicted as time goes by. “Just one more row” 2 hours later!! Knitting has really helped me in so many ways, and it’s a joy to feel “hugs” all day long from sweaters I’ve knitted myself! Happy 2009!

  329. I tried cables for the first time this year and I learned to spin on a drop spindle this year. I also designed my first pattern.

    For 2009 I want to learn fair-isle and intarsia. I am fearless and I will be fearless in the future!

  330. It is now January 1st in Taiwan where I am teaching English to many precocious Taiwanese children. I have been knitting since I was about 10 years old, taught by my grandmother and mother. That was 50 years ago! Where does the time go? But I love it. I also crochet, quilt, and am an exhibiting artist and jeweler. I always travel with my Denise Interchangeable Knitting Needle Kit and a few crochet hooks, and was astonished when I learned that the Taiwanese men (yes, men) and women love to knit. In a market near my school, I found a tiny wool shop crammed from the top of the ceiling to the floor with gorgeous German and Italian wools. The owner is a young woman who speaks English and she seems to enjoy helping me choose wools. I was fearless in 2008 because I returned to Taiwan to continue teaching after a bad teaching experience in China, and on this day, January 1st, 2009, I finally grafted my first toe of one of the socks I was knitting using Sandi’s grafting tip sent to me in the Newsletter. I have been knitting socks for many, many years, and as one woman wrote, have people lining up waiting for them. But I have always hated grafting, but have finally succeeded I enjoy the website, thank you Sandi and Knitting Daily.
    NinaK in Taiwan

  331. Well, I was very very fearless this year! I learned tons of new types of stitches and tricks in knitting. I did lacework for the first time, my first afghan, my first extensive colorwork and I even designed it myself… I learned how to make socks and proceeded to make three pair, I designed my own piano keys scarf with lots of different textured stitch patterns and knitted it, I learned how to use double-pointed needles for the first time, and I used 100% alpaca for the first time, which was my first time using an entirely non-acrylic yarn. Now I use a lot of animal fiber. I can’t wait to start playing with new things in 2009! πŸ™‚ Happy new year!!


  333. Wow! Fear doesn’t stand a chance around here! I didn’t think I was being fearless, but now I realize I was without knowing it. I conquered lace, cables and I fell in love with luxury yarn, especially silk and cashmere this year. I used to think cutting out a pattern for sewing was stressful, but after struggling with gauge swatches on $44 a skein cashmere, I have a new understanding of the term intense. But I was fearless! and knitted my sister-in-law the most exquisite pair of lacy/cabley socks that felt like a cashmere dream. Thanks to Knitting Daily for all the fabulous tips, tricks and encouragement and HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!

  334. I’m about to become more fearless — I knit a vest with super gorgeous yarn (Blue Sky Alpaca Bulky, Duotones) and it somehow came out a bit larger than I expected. YES, I did do a gauge swatch!!! I’m going to “full” it, which I believe is the correct term for partially felted a knitted garment. I’ve been searching the web looking for tips — do you have any for me?

  335. I didn’t think I was that fearless, but it seems I was. I finished a few sweaters that actually fit me and the people I gave them to. One of the sweaters was an argyle with many colors and different techniques. I had to block that one myself and did it with the help of your website, your bloggers, and my local knit shop (they are wonderful). I have signed up to take more classes and hope to challenge myself even more in 2009. Thanks for your help and advise. Happy 2009 to all.

  336. I am a machine knitter first. I started spinning and wanted to knit my yarn on the knitting machine. Of course, at first my yarn was too fat to fit even on the Bulky machine. I had to learn to hand knit so I could use my yarn. Wow, what an adventure. This last year I hand knitted a sweater and finished it from the roving from my own sheep. I am in love with hand knitting. I also tried a braided cable on some hand warmer and they turned out beautiful. I still love my kntting machines, but have totally spread out to include handknitting, crochet, needle felting and all the fiber crafts. I just plain love yarn. Thanks for your Knitting Daily, I love that too.

  337. I have a friend who loves to have me knit for her. She chose a sweater and some very expensive yarn, handed them to me and said, :”Here I want a sweater like this, but the neck is way too low. Change the neckline, make it a cardigan instead of a pullover, change the size around, make it longer in the body and shorter in the sleeves and it will be just what I want.” Whew! To top it off the decorative pattern was very difficult. But guess what…. I did everything she asked for and it turned our beautifully. I was jumping up and down for joy!

  338. I have been knitting for about four years and have fallen in love with knitting socks. Just before Thanksgiving, I made a pair of socks in Patons Kroy Socks self striping yarn They turned out great. So nice in fact that my daughter decided she needed a pair of knee socks to wear with her boots this winter. So I gave it a try with 4 skeins of Patons yarn. Turned out great, if I say so myself. TessM

  339. I’d practiced making mittens by crocheting 2 pairs–crochet is my comfort zone. I decided they were a bit to holey to be really warm so I learned to knit them-on 4 dpn’s. They must have been ok because I (happily) sold them before they were off of the needles! Started another pair right away from my own handspun :)…these ones I’m keeping (my handspun is too special for me to part with)!!!

  340. My resolution for 2008 was to try knitting socks – AND I DID! both on double pointed needles and with the Magic Loop technique. I’m so glad I did – nothing to be afraid of! Of course, it is wonderful to have the support of a terrific LYS and a group of compassionate knitters.

  341. One of my goals for 2008 Fearless knitting was to try some colorwork. I made a little mug cozy for my first attempt, and in November I made a Christmas Stocking. I’m please with my efforts, mostly, but still have a long way to go!

  342. I was afraid at first but then I became fearless. I not only overcame my fear of knitting with beads but I did it with a wire project. Both firsts. I knit a beaded wire bracelet and I had such fun that I knit another. I submitted it into our local show and won first prize in its section.
    Thank you for helping me overcome my fear.
    I have now knitted many more and get rave reviews on them all!

  343. My big problem is there are so many projects and things I like to do and not enough time to do them all. I learned to knit in the round and do cables–but I am no way finished with those projects yet. I also learned how to spin camel down and flax on spindles, but not together or at the same time! My husband wants to know when I will use all the fiber and yarn in my stash! Ha.

  344. I started (my 2nd sweater) and actually finished it!!! I made 3 sets of fingerless mittens where the pattern stitch was more than just a garter or stocking stitch. I have been quite afraid of lacy patterns, but this was a breeze!!

  345. I have only knitted for about 1 year and mostly scarves. I knitted a child size sweater and it came out great. I must admit I had the help of my local yarn shop ladies who were very patient and helpful. I hope to knit myself a sweater now and lots more. I am a crocheter so this is a big deal for me.

  346. I finally mastered the kitchener/weaving stitch. I taught myself how to crochet and have been adding this to my knitting projects. Finally – and most importantly – I started to knit to the size I am currently and not the size I wish I was again. It’s only knitting and I can always unravel it and make things smaller.

  347. I jumped feetfirst into color, given your example! I took a two-color hat (the Inga Hat) and changed one color into a gradation of colors, with one contrasting color for ‘pop.’ I’m not done with it, but am very, very pleased. I was inspired by Alice Starmore’s amazing patterns, including Henry VIII.

    Thanks for the encouragement!

  348. During Hurricane Ike, I took some hand-dyed yarn from CosmicKnits (Dharmafey in Ravelry), specially made for this project, in the colorway “Under the Bay”. I cast on and unraveled at least three or four times, as my first attempt at entrelac knitting! I was knitting an entrelac scarf, and I got fed up at one point and started knitting a plain stockinette scarf, but hubby said the entrelac looked better, so I went back to it. After all the practice, it has become soothing and enjoyable, though I need to pay a touch more attention to it than to mindless knitting projects. It’s fun and easy… I think lace will be next…

  349. During Hurricane Ike, I took some hand-dyed yarn from CosmicKnits (Dharmafey in Ravelry), specially made for this project, in the colorway “Under the Bay” with us while we evacuated to San Antonio. I cast on and unraveled at least three or four times, as my first attempt at entrelac knitting! I was knitting an entrelac scarf, and I got fed up at one point and started knitting a plain stockinette scarf, but hubby said the entrelac looked better, so I went back to it. By the end of that weekend, I had a good quarter of the scarf done! After all the practice, it has become soothing and enjoyable, though I need to pay a touch more attention to it than to mindless knitting projects. It’s fun and easy… I think lace will be next…

  350. Being a beginner (haven’t knitted in 35 yrs), I started the year using handspun, handdyed yarns and going out on a limb doing felted hats, children’s ruffled sweater, kids earflap hats, kids socks, mittens, shawls and lastly for the two little girls, felted clogs which were spectacular and all the adults want them now. Here are some pictures.

  351. I knitted a sweater for someone from a pattern that fits! And I finished it in about a month! I used Kristin Spurkland’s pattern in Knitting (Man)ual and I love this book. Happy knitting!

  352. I’m so excited- I learned how to do double sided cables in 2008! Now I can knit blankets or scarves or anything and the cables will look good on both sides. It’s so easy and so fun to do. I’ve already made a beautiful long scarf with one big cable going down the center and I’m working on an all over cabled scarf that will look good on both sides. Deb J

  353. I learned to steek! Talk about fearless! I took a class at my LYS (Recyled Lamb in Lakewood, CO), where I made my first Fair Isle sweater (a Nicky Epstein pattern), and steeked the front of the cardigan, the neckline and the armholes. We had champagne to celebrate after we cut our sweaters. I went on to make 3 vests I designed for my triplet granddaughters using the techniques I learned in the class. I discovered that I love the two-handed color knitting and will continue doing it. Deb, you wrote that you learned to do double sided cables. I want to learn that! What patterns did you use?

  354. I learned to spin! And I learned to knit socks. I actually knitted the very first thing I’ve ever knitted for MYSELF – a pair of socks. I am now addicted to knitting socks and to spinning LOL.

  355. In 2008 I learned how to work with Magic Loop, also two circulars at once, and dabbled in Continental knitting. I have been enamored of lace for years, but this year I started knitting socks! This year I may face my fear of stranded knitting & possibly steeking (more like “eeeking”!), because I’d like to make sweaters.

  356. Me, fearless in 2008? You bet. First of all, I had a major 4-part reconstructive surgery on my left in February, which effectively kept from getting too much done on my feet until spring. In February we learned we’d be great-grandparents in October, and out came the needles! I’m really bad about starting too many projects and ending up with some unfinished for a while. BUT in 2008, I actually finished the following: (1) an afghan for baby Kylie; (2) a cap and sweater; (3) four additional caps by the same pattern cause Kylie’s mom liked the pattern so much; and (4) a headband out of cotton thread on teeny tiny size 2 needles because it’s what Kylie really needed, according to her mom. All of them were received with ooh’s and aah’s, and I felt so good about getting them all done!

    Thanks to SharonP for her post regarding steeking. I learned a two-handed Fair Isle method about 2 years ago and have been really nervous about cutting into what will be (I hope) a gorgeous cardigan when I’m done! But now I know I am FEARLESS, so why am I worried? LOL!

  357. Definitely fearless! Whilst nosing in my stash, my daughter picked up some orange, brown and turquoise wool and said, ‘wow! I like these colours .. can you make me a dress with this?’ So I did, with no pattern, simply her measurements and inventing it as I knitted it. She loves it and it fits like a glove.

  358. I have been knitting for more than 30 years in in 2007 started working on knitting lace patterns. Unfortunately, on December 19, 2007 I fell on my driveway and broke my right hand and shattered my left wrist. I had surgery on 1/3/08 and came out of surgery with a condition called reflex sympathetic distrophy (RSD). My left hand had no movement and I was in extreme pain. All I could think of was how much I wanted to knit. After months of therapy, I got back some movement in my left hand and even though the pain was still there, I kept picking up the knitting needles and tried to knit. It took many weeks before I was able to complete 50 stiches. I kept at it and started making simple projects like wash clothes. I am know working on sweaters for bears. Thick yarn, big needles, small projects seem to be best right now. I keep trying to pick up the thin yarn and thin needles but my hands are not there year. I will not give up and will keep knitting as best as I can.

  359. My biggest fears were sleeves and socks. With a little help from the lovely ladies at my LYS, those socks flew off my needles over the summer. As for sleeves, on New Year’s Eve, I finished my first baby sweater – those sleeves may have only been six inches long, but they still count!!

  360. I challenged myself – having knitted for less than a year at the time – to make knitted gifts for my parents and my husbands parents for Christmas. The scarf for my FIL was fun and easy. But I decided to make sweaters for all the rest. Sight unseen. Guessing at sizes. A sideways knit v-neck for my mother-in-law. A bulky cardigan for my mother. A ribbed v-neck for my father.

    I finished them in time to send them. They all turned out beautifully. They all fit!

    I can’t believe how much I learned in knitting those 3 sweaters. And now I feel like there’s nothing I can’t tackle, which is the best feeling in the whole world as a knitter.

    Pictures of the finished objects:

  361. I finally took the plunge and knitted socks. i’ve been terrified of trying, but figured i could do it and i could! It was great fun and of course, now i’m hooked!

  362. re: How Were You A Fearless Knitter in 2008?
    My daughter saw the White Witch Mitts and fell in love with the pattern. Here is my version of the Mitts and my daughter loves them!

  363. I finished a lace scarf! After starting a couple of times (and giving up and starting over)–this time I did it. I also tried my hand at a little designing–not from scratch, but by modifying and combining patterns–and they turned out. I am becoming much more confident about making changes if I think something will work better for me.

  364. I returned to knitting after a 45 year break in fall 2007. My great output that year was kitchen dishcloths and beanies for grandchildren. For 2008 I decided to knit real garments for my daughter and myself, to knit socks, to knit lace, in other words to become a real knitter. I made two jackets for my daughter and a mesh lace tank top, an openwork foulard, as well as a series of stylish hats for her. In June I had a nasty health diagnosis and following my surgery I knit my first sock. It was a sweet success! I find that I really enjoy both ‘miles of stitches’ jacket knitting just as much as line by line complex patterns in lace or small needle knitting in socks. Knitting new and different things not only gave me a splendid year of ‘production’, but knitting gave me a calming, happy time during a black cloud health period. I’m done with all the treatments and feeling pretty good. I could not have gotten through it sane, except for my knitting. My first fearless attempt for 2009 will be two socks at a time on two circular needles. I am used to knitting with circulars so that’s the first new way to go. Perhaps magic loop will be next year’s new new thing!

  365. I was a Fearless Knitter in 2008 by expanding my ability to knit lace in preparation for my wedding and honeymoon. In addition, I learned that being a good knitter involves knowing when a project needs to be frogged (I had tried to knit the top of my wedding dress!) I invested in my stash enhancement at levels I thought might be unknittable in the foreseeable future.

    Knitted Yarns (

  366. I am a beginner knitter-only knitted dishclothes. In 2008, I made a single cabled scarf (with the help of a dear friend)!
    I’d like to venture to making socks!

  367. In 2008, I decided that since I couldn’t find work because of this horrible economy, I needed to make my own job. In August, after 6 months of unprofitable searching, I bought some needles, grabbed some yarn my mom had stashed away in the garage (she used to do loom knitting in early 2000), and headed to the internet to learn how to knit.

    To date, I’ve completed a queen-sized afghan, one women’s sweater, two children’s sweaters (one is hooded!), 11 hats, 3 pairs of socks, a kimono shrug, a cup cozy, 2 pairs of fingerless gloves, a holder for all my double-point needles, and 6 scarves!

    I’ve done a lot of frogging, a little crying, and a whole lot of learning. I’m now in the process of creating my own patterns and trying to start my own business selling my knit apparel and accessories. I hope I can be as fearless in 2009 as I was in 2008.

  368. In 2008 I became involved with a wonderful group of women, who knit and crochet for the Knots-of-Love organization. Before that I only knitted baby blankets. Last summer I learned to knit in the round and now make chemo caps. I have never felt better about my knitting accomplishments and on a personal note, myself. I want to shout out to Christine Shively from this wonderful organization, which ships handmade chemo caps all over the country at no cost to the patients who love them. Christine maintains a wonderful and informative website if anyone is interested in finding out more.
    Happy 2009

  369. I made up my own pattern of cables, stockinette, seed stitches for a sweater because I could not find a busy enough pattern. I don’t think I will do that again – for example, I had to take out the top of the sleeves at least four times. But I like the result. Can a Irish fisherman’s knit sweater be navy blue?

  370. I tried cables, intarsia and lace knitting for the first time. I love all of them! It’s so much fun but takes more concentration. One thing I did that has taken more time than I thought it would is undertaking knitting a “polka dot” scarf (using intarsia) in the university colors for seven girls in my Sunday School class. While i didn’t start until July, my hope was to have all of them finished for a mass mailing in mid-October, but after I continued to all behind on my self-imposed deadline, I decided to send them as I finish them. I’m now on the fourth, but there have been several projects in-between. I also completed two garments during the year, but both didn’t fit. One looked like a potato sack on me, the other one, a zip-front vest, was much too snug. So this year my personal goal is to knit a sweater that fits and looks good on me!

  371. My son got married in May 2008 and I told his bride in the summer of 2007 that I would knit her wedding veil. I then had to have major surgery so had to delay starting the knitting until about two months before the wedding. I then proceeded to complete the project by working almost all day every day and finished it, including the blocking, two weeks before the big day. The yarn was cobweb gossamer merino and the pattern was the “Mediterranean Lace” shawl from Meg Swanson’s “A Gathering of Lace” book. I got such a feeling of satisfaction when Laura wore the beautiful veil, and of course basked in the kudos from the wedding guests.

  372. Betty
    I found a lovely lace shawl from Fiber Trends, Queen of Hearts Shawl, and jumped in. Lovely and fun.
    Also took a fair isle course titlled ‘Two colors, Two hands, Two hours’ .Made a lovley head band and have made many more.

  373. I reconnected with the “knitter” in me and taught myself how to knit socks. I passed it on by teaching 3 others how to knit socks as well. Knitting has developed into a new passion for me as well as meeting others. Also, its a great thing stress reducer.


  374. amazing stories πŸ™‚ i was just thinking yesterday that because of the crisis i will be knitting less simple and more glamour things to stand out from the “made in china” knits while staying at the same price range.
    that is the only way i can compete: to offer MORE. for this i have to be “personnal”, creative, glamorous and earn less since i spend more time on each item and i add more bought details.
    i also have to master everything and teach myself whatever it is i did not try yet.
    i’ve already attacked mittens, it seems sooo easy now.
    i am looking at socks with new eyes too, i am guessing that will be a snap.
    i know short rows, i write lace charts, i write colowork charts and knit it.
    i can manage cables very well and on the verge of writing my own charts for a special project that is dear to my beliefs.

    i am french by the way. my blog is and you will find me on ravelry.

  375. Hellllooo alll!!!
    June here from Ontario Canada….well this year I finally got a sock made…I have been trying socks for –well a while and finally I did it!!
    I am now on my second pair of socks. Even made a double heel. Still have trouble grafting though!!

    happy 2009 to everyone!

    June in Cambridge Ontario Canada.

  376. Hello,
    I became a fearless knitter, I learned it from my grandmother. Then, I knitted my own schal in petrol blue, in lace patern and a cotton sweater as a gift for my motherΒ΄s birthday. It took a while, but IΒ΄m satisfied with both.
    Now, with Your help and browsing through patterns, IΒ΄m planning a lot more. Thanks for being there for us fearless knitters.
    YourΒ΄s faithfully, Josipa from Croatia, Europe.

  377. I self-taught myself to knit when I was about 12 years old. I celebrated my 55th birthday on 12/28/2008 and this year, due in part to Debbie MacComber’s books, I have gone back to knitting, which I had abandoned for years in lieu of quilting, crocheting and beading. I still do those, but I now knit at least a few rows every day and find that I am again in love with yarn and knitting. In 2009, family and friends best beware, as Christmas gifts will be knitted!! I have made several pair of socks and mittens over the past two months, some for myself & husband, and some for my “growing like a weed” grandson and his mother. There are so many wonderful magazines available now, as well as great yarns. A tip to sock makers — I have a problem with wearing holes in the toes of my ready-made socks, so I have adapted the pattern to include the reinforcement used at the heel in the instep toe shaping. Works great — you just need to pay attention as you are decreasing to keep in pattern with the reinforcements. Happy knitting in 2009! Peggy in Concord, NC