When knitters cast on a project, we usually have a plan. Perhaps it's in the form of a pattern that someone with more patience than yourself has taken the time to think through for you--and aren't you clever to have traded a mere five dollars to avoid the painful process of figuring out how to make the hat decreases look elegant?
Perhaps the specifics don't matter so much and we just want to see what the yarn becomes. That's a plan, too.
Choosing the yarn is part of the plan, of course. We Knitters can leisurely browse the local yarn shop for something that feels and smells and looks just right, or we can rummage through our stash to choose the yarn that will relieve the most guilt over having neglected its potential for so long. Or, we can rearrange our plans for Friday night so that we will be home at 6pm for our favorite indie yarn dyer's update, login early, click the wrong page and two minutes later, realize the mistake then navigate to the correct page only to find that it's all gone already, therefore immediately make plans to be home for next Friday night's update to try again to score that amazing speckled yarn. (I got it on the fourth try.)
We can swatch, wash, and swatch some more. Or spend lots of time coming up with excuses to avoid swatching. It usually adds up to the same time spent.
If you're me, you take pictures of the yarn on the skein, then again while winding, and then more pictures of the cakes all stacked up. Mmm, cake.
But no matter how much time a Knitter spends planning, the Knitter must cast on. All the time spent browsing Ravelry, all the time selecting yarn, all the dreaming of the ways we will wear the sweater... all of it never seems to result in an actual finished sweater.
Where do you find that sweet spot between having an intelligent plan and just jumping in because you know you'll never start unless you do?
Consider this post a cast on. In my Knitter Life, I'm more of a planner, carefully pairing yarn to pattern, documenting with photographs every step of the way. I've done this long enough to have some confidence that I (pretty much) know what I'm doing when I start a project. In my Writer Life, my plan (if you could call it that) is a little more . . . vague . . . (yeah, that's a nice way of putting it!) But you can't steer a parked car and sharing your love of knitting doesn't happen unless you actually start to blog. Yarnscaping is a little idea that needed some time in the oven, to make sure I had the concept right. But the timer went off a while ago, and I was slow to pull it out to see what I'd cooked up. It's time to invite my Yarn-loving friends to the table so we can share this hobby we're crazy about.