söndag 23 februari 2014

That overwhelming feeling you get...

... when you reorganize your planner setup.

I am currently writing my Bachelor and I have had an immense planner fail the last couple of months. I do not thrive without a schedule where I am accountable for my actions often. My department have the best plan for a thesis course I have ever seen with plenty of deadlines, and we discuss each other's texts in a group (we are about ten people writing for the same supervisor and we studied together last term so we know each other very well) which is great. However, the deadlines are biweekly or less so I lose momentum. I am so overwhelmed, I have a lot on my plate all the time and I feel stressed because I need my planner to work for me and it does not!

My last planner related post was about changing from Dodopad to Filofax week per view. Nope. Did not work. (That sucked. I hate the standard week per view! Hate it!) So, what I have done is that I have gone back to the Dodopad, but I have added some things to get a better overview and to be able to plan my days in detail, because that is what I have needed for a long time. I got inspired by Joshua LaPorte's video on his weekly review process and I have printed a week's worth of Limetreefruits' daily planning pages (as you may know, I am a big fan of her work) for detailed planning and her monthly pages for a better overview. I really, really, really want to buy her 2014 planner pack! Cannot afford it at the moment though, but I am sorta' planning to buy an a5 Filofax original in green around the end of June (for my birthday) so I will hopefully be able to buy it then.

 Well, then. (Ignore the rugged edges of the monthly view, I cut all of them at once with scissors, k?) I decided to keep the Dodopad anyway, because I feel that it is a good weekly view and the set times are in the focus. I have colour coded them according to class throughout and everything else is in black Frixion because my work hours and so on is not necessarily set in stone. The day per page ones are Frixion only, too, because I do not have a lot of colour ink in my printer ;) I do not really need to archive my DPP either, they are just for time management and not much else.

What I stole from Joshua is that he only have a weeks worth or so of day per page, so he is forcing himself, literally, to review them when he puts in new ones - in my setup, these are the day per page ones. When I lack motivation, energy and focus, a super detailed plan is great, no excuses! I have been struggling with my weekly review ever since I realized that it does not do anything else than benefit me. Well, I will see if this works, I think so :)

I am a little excited to see how this desk-product will work in the field, so to speak. The risk is that I will be overwhelmed since there are three (!) different views, but I think I have it covered anyway. The monthly view is for at-a-glance of the important stuff, you can move everything else around. It is supposed to be a notification, sort of "hey, something important happens here, plan around it!". The weekly is the agenda for the classes and tickler for upcoming day planning, and the day per page is where the real time management happens.

Messy? Maybe.. We will see :) What do you think? Any tips and tricks you want to share?

(All of the above is my opinions, I did not receive any compensation for featuring above products)

lördag 8 februari 2014

January 12in12 for 2014 - Chuck!

My goal for this year is to make twelve adult-sized cardigans or pullovers, roughly one per month. I decided to start with Chuck by Andi Satterlund, a cropped pullover with cables on the front and stockinette on the back. When I first saw the pattern on Ravelry I was so over-the-moon in love with it, the pictures sort of have a preppy fifties-look to them and it was just lovely!
The pattern called for the Cascade 220-yarn and I actually found a retailer in Sweden who carries Cascade, Garnkorgen. It is not very common for Swedish retailers to carry American brands since we have a surprisingly large yarn industry in Scandinavia - Drops Design for example. At first I was set on using a cherry red colour for my Chuck, but when I saw the colour Ireland (in the heathers range) I changed my mind. I love green, and the moss colour is just lovely. In hindsight I think I should have gone with the cherry red colour, but that is a reason to make another one, isn't it? I think this colour would have been cuter on the cardigan Marion.

Still working on the left sleeve here, and I have yet to make the neckline
Pattern wise, I really liked it. It was easy to follow (I consider myself to be an advanced newbie) and you didn't have to think about stuff for too long - idiot proof ;). I have just made one sweater before and it was a raglan style (hate that sweater, the yarn is awful) so the construction of making the shoulder part first on each side and then cast on and pick up stitches was interesting. I managed to screw up the sizing, I went M on the front and S on the back - which, incidentally, is what my body actually craves - and that messed up the decreasing quite a lot, now I have wing flaps under the arms... You can't see it if you don't look though, and most people don't stare into other people's armpits so I think I'll be alright.

This is the length of the finished sleeves. Love <3
I managed to get different stitch counts on the arms too and that was weird. One of the sleeves has thus one lesser decrease than the other. Not a big deal either, you can't tell the difference if you don't inspect it - another thing people generally don't do. Unless you're a knitting nerd. And then it doesn't matter, I think. Knitting nerds appreciate the time and effort that goes in to a piece.
I got the neck lining odd too, I think I have around ten fewer stitches that I was supposed to have so the ribbing is a bit stretched. I don't mind though, I think it looks fine anyway :)

One thing that I've realized during this project is how different my gauge is on circular and straights. I have mostly done things in the round since I prefer knit st over purls, like most knitters I guess. Thankfully I have interchangeable rounds so I can just go down a size on the left needle and then it'll look much better. Honestly, interchangeable needles are the best! (Pic is on my Instagram, @hecathe)

I had planned on doing a red chuck for February, but my wallet is grumpy so I'm stuck with my small stash for now. I've made a pair of thick socks as well as handwarmers for a friend of mine who is permanently cold. We work as archive assistants and from next week we will have to work inside the archive where there's not even 16 degrees Celcius (damn cold in Farenheit) so to keep her from dying of hypothermia or something I clean out my stash. Yesterday evening I cast on a pair of toe-up socks for my self too. Pics will be posted on my Instagram, @hecathe.

Knit long and prosper!