Knitting journals and tracking of your knitting projects

Hi there how are you today? Yet again we are coming to the weekend and Christmas is now just behind the corner so to speak.

I’m not doing much of Christmas gift knitting this year but somehow I seem to have managed to concentrate all the gift knitting to the very last few days and in spite of my significant knitting commitments (that is test knits) I’m still being tempted by new patterns on a daily bases and I have to admit that I have cast on for yet another new project just today!

It is a bulky cowl by Laura Aylor called Midwinter. I don’t have a picture of it yet as I just started and only have a few rows done at this time. I’m knitting this with my 100% baby alpaca chunky yarn and I’m using a mix of hand dyed and undyed yarn –  the main colour is just undyed yarn and I think it will look and feel amazing.

So if you are anything like me, you will have a gazillion knitting projects on the go at any time and sometimes you may wish you actually kept track on those projects. I know I do.

I do try to set up Ravelry project pages when I finish an item and for the most part I am successful but sometimes, when I’m finally done I don’t remember all the details and sometimes I have even thrown away the paper pattern where I have written down amendments or other while I was knitting.

This situation has led me to want to keep a knitting journal:

I have seen lots of knitting journals on IG and on knitting podcasts and I think they are all so fun and wonderful. I think that keeping a knitting journal over a few years must be so rewarding and so fun to later go back and look over what we have accomplished.

And over the time I have purchased special knitting journals at different price points, always full of enthusiasm and good intentions only to end up not using them at all.

The last journal I purchased was the Strickeplaner by Martina Behm. The name is German but all the text inside the journal is in English.

This is a small, hard backed journal that is not only like a calendar but also has lots of bits of random knitting related wisdom. You can plan out over a whole month, over a trimester and of course per week. There are also special “project” pages intended to fill out all the important details for each of our projects (though there are not enough pages like that for a prolific knitter  that really takes down the details for all their projects ).

Here is an example of a week overview. So you see that you can dot down maybe goals or special planning for the week asa whole and then you have boxes for each day.

For the little while that I actually used my journal, I would  use the first section to prioritise what I needed  to work on, sort of like goal setting. For the day sections, I would mostly not used those to be honest except to note down when I started a project. Then I would note the name of the pattern, the yarn used and needle size. Later when the project was finished I would use one of the “project” pages to fill out all the details including cast on and off dates.

I do regret not having been more serious about this and keeping with it through out the year. And now that 2019 is just a few days away I am more determined than ever to start and actually stay with a knitting journal for the entire year!

You heard it here first! Would you like to join me?

So I already have 2 journals ready to go. I’m not sure if I will use them simultaneously (maybe too ambitious) or one after the other. They are not quite the same which is why the idea of using both at the same time came to me. But I think I need to be realistic and just do one.

But which one to start with?

Knitting journals for 2019

The grey journal on the left is one I purchased from the Wool Barn.

This journal is similar to the one I had from Martina Behm. It includes some common knitting abbreviations and instructions for those and there is also a needle size conversion chart which is always useful. And there is an index at the front with little numbered boxes from 1 to 20 where one can add the name of each pattern.

This journal is indeed made for 20 projects.

You have 2 pages for each project. On the left page you can fill out all the details like the pattern name, designer, yarn, needle  etc and on the right page you have an empty page where you can include a little picture of your project, maybe a little bit of the yarn, sketches and what ever else you can think of.

I really like this set up and the journal. The price is of course much lower than the Martina Behm one because the material used is less costly and the journal itself much simpler. But I think this will work better for me as it is more to the point and is more “project” based versus it being more of a “journal”.

The second journal I have on had at the moment is the illustrated one on the right.

This is not really a knitting journal per se but rather a notebook with some fun lama images.

How cute is that ?  I also have a nice collection of fun knitting themed stickers I could use to decorate my pages and make this a more fun journal.

So what is the plan then? Well, I think I will start with the Wool Barn journal as it is more structured and if that works well, then I will move over to this more simpler journal for my 21st project and onwards. Maybe I will keep the set up from the Wool Barn journal to always include the same type of info for each project.

I’m actually getting a little excited about this as I sit here and write this. I think this can be a fun and rewarding activity and I really hope I will stick with it.

Do you keep a knitting journal? If you do I would love to hear from you how you organise your journal, if you have any tips or tricks, what brand of journal you use etc.

And if you would like to join me on this knitting journal adventure in 2019 do let me know. I could open a thread in my Ravelry group where we could exchange pictures of our journals and just generally chatter and get inspired by each other.

This is all for today folks. Thank you for stopping by and taking time out of your busy schedule to spend some time with me.  I wish you a relaxing weekend with lots of knitting time and look forward to being back with something new to share with you next week.

4 thoughts on “Knitting journals and tracking of your knitting projects

  1. Over the years, I, too have tried various journal and notebook approaches with varying amounts of success. My goal is to record the details of my stash, wips, patterns, and projects. I do not use them for time or project management. The one that works best is more of a scrapbook/scientific lab notebook than a journal, divided into sections by project type, stash details, and techique info. I find I need the flexibility of a loose leaf binder, that is filled with graph paper, not lined paper, and transparent page protector sleeves. I make a page for each new yarn, with all the ball band information, date of purchase, etc. as well as a 1”long wrapped sample of the actual yarn (both for future mending, and for wpi reference). When I start a project I try to write out the important details of the pattern on the right hand page. Any mods, annotations, gauge results, sizing measurements on the left page are added as I go-much the way I was trained to keep a laboratory notebook as a chemist. As I’m actually knitting I tend to keep a folded printout of the pattern, and notes on scraps of paper and notecards that fit in my project bag, which I keep in small (half-sheet size) looseleaf transparent page protectors. When the project is done, I may or may not do a good job of transcribing my notes on scrap paper into my journal, but I do clip the clear pocket filled with my notes into my notebook with the original entry.
    As I read this, I can’t help but laugh. I suspect I enjoy the notebook as much as the knitting! And, from what I have learned of you, I suspect that what works for me is very different from what works for you! But then, you are a much more productive knitter than I, and manage to keep so many projects moving forward at one time! I am always in awe of the amount and skill of your knitting!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you Julie both for your compliments and for sharing your experience. I really enjoyed reading about how you keep track of your projects. I think that keeping a little piece of the yarn used is a great idea as well as the ball band. I can see both coming in handy if an issue arises later on or simply if one wants to knit the same project again for example. I too prefer to work from print outs where I can write down any changes and keep track of my progress but I am trying to use apps like the Knitting Companion more but it takes time and practice to feel comfortable with an app.
      I’m thinking I will start my journal beginning of next year, for the first thing I will cast on. I am not planning on entering my current projects. But I am looking forward to making a real go because I think it must be not only interesting but rewarding to be able to look back at the end of the year and browse through all the projects one has worked on.
      I’m thinking maybe I would like to add a little picture to the journal of each item, a little polaroid as a souvenir. We’ll see 🙂

      Like

  2. Thank you for your blog about knitting journals. I found it very interesting and have been inspired to join you in keeping notes in an organised way. I have ordered online a journal and a selection of stickers. I have a few knitting projects which I am working on and I forget some of the subtleties of how I have changed a pattern or what parts were more challenging and how I completed them. I’m not sure of my choice of book is a good one, but when it arrives I already have a few points I want to make regarding a pair lace socks I am currently knitting. For example the cuff and leg appear perfect for dimension, but the instep and foot, following the decrease appear to be too small or narrow. I really like the design but may have to re-knit quite a lot of the sock with no decrease or extra stitches! Everything is due to arrive before Christmas – so I’m looking forward to this new experience. Thanks for the inspiration.

    Liked by 1 person

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