Still fighting the burnout beast!

Well, here it is Wednesday already!

On Monday, Mazie, Mom, and I did a little photoshoot for an upcoming Stitch CoOp project. It was really fun to put Mazie in all of the pretty knits from my friends and colleagues and run around the beautiful Young Park here in Las Cruces.

Mazie Smiling
Here’s a little preview!

Yesterday, I finished up my Lion Notebook Blog post for the week! We’re working on the SLEEVES section of the Textured Circle Shrug. I had to make my two sleeves look very different because a lot of the KALers are modifying their sleeves, and I want to have one example “by the book” and another one that will (hopefully) help out those adventurous souls who are off on their own a little more. Check the Notebook Blog tomorrow to see what I mean. This two different sleeves thing goes against my sense of symmetry and order…but! It’s for the Greater Good! (lol!)

Man, I’m still feeling a little stressed / burned out, but I’m loving my bamboo project:
Shirt progress...dramatic view

It’s just what I needed for a relaxing little knitt. I’m actually pleased to report that I like working with my own yarn, too. (I’ve got about 40 hanks to post on Esty when I get back from my trip this weekend.) I’ve made a few scarves with it, both my Reclamation pattern (click the shop link above if you are curious) and the patterns that come in the Etsy Kit, but man, it’s nice to see that it works up well in stockinette as a garment, too.

My little project so far:
Shirt progress
You can tell that I haven’t found that much time to work on it!

Here’s an article that Shannon Tweeted about Creative Burnout.

This really made me think: “The days of the 9-to-5 job are gone and the boundaries between work and home are blurred to the point of non-existence. We’re expected to be available nearly all the time, and the problem is often exacerbated for freelancers or anyone who works primarily from a home office where the only divide between being “at home” and being “at work” is a single door or a flight of stairs.

It’s not a badge of honor to work 80 hours a week or to answer e-mail or to Twitter at all hours of the night. Ask yourself: Have you set sufficient boundaries between your job and your life outside of work? Are you guarding those boundaries?”

If it makes you stop and think, too, I suggest that you read the article. I really need to find the balance, and consciously separate work time from family time. The last few years, I just sat around in the evenings with my laptop on my lap, doing my stuff, checking my email, etc. Now, though, I can’t do that. I have a toddler who needs me and who I want to spend time with. I’ll figure it out, I’m just glad that I was able to recognize it (burnout) for what it is!

My mom also just handed me an article on Toxic Personality Types to Avoid…those people in life that just make you feel BAD. I seem to end up with a lot of these around, and I’m not sure why. Something else to look into!

Sketch to Shirt: Analysis of the first swatch

This is a DK weight bamboo chain yarn that I dyed (the same stuff as in my Etsy shop).
checking the drape potential of the fabric

As well as needing to check my gauge, I want to see what the drape of this fabric will be like, and whether the colors would pool, so I cast on quite a few stitches for this swatch.

I can tell by gathering the fabric that it’ll be quite maliable and that this is exactly the gauge that I need for my top. It’s going to hold its shape, but will flow and be really smooth-looking.

closeup of potential yarn choice for the shirt I'm making
I also like the colors in the yarn, and I find that what minimal pooling there is really doesn’t look bad.

swatch of DK weight bamboo for a shirt

BUT. I’ve decided that as interesting as this yarn would be in a scarf like this:
Reclamation 4

…the colors aren’t what I need for my garment. The overall feel is too “cool” for me. I’ve got 3 more hanks of this yarn in this dark purple, and none of those have as much green. I’m going to swatch one of those and see if I like it better.

Am I burned out or not?

Well, I had a phonecall with the editorial director at my publisher today to talk about the book I’m writing. I’m being kind of slow this time, because I’m just having problems sitting down and writing. As you can see, I’m totally procrastinating with all this sewing, and I’m just not very far on it.

So she asked me if I’m burned out. I don’t really think that I’m totally burned out of ideas, but I’m definitely rolling the question around in my head. You know (if you’ve been reading) that I’m having kind of a hard spring. But am I really done knitting?

I decided to do some yarny stuff to see if I really just don’t like to knit any more, or if I’m just in a distractable state.
skeinwinder parts

A couple of weeks ago, I ordered an electric skeinwinder from ordered from crazy monkey. It came today and I started to put it together, but I’m missing a couple of parts. Emailed them to let them know, so hopefully in a few days I’ll be able to skein up all that yarn from a few posts ago.

So, since I couldn’t do that, I decided to use some of the bamboo I dyed to make something for me to wear. I’ve been wanting something like this for a while…here’s a simple sketch:

Playing with a concept
It’s basically just going to have big flowy arms and not be fitted anywhere. The yoke is knit in the round in stockinette (at least to start out) and the body…we’ll see.

I hope I’m not fully burned out…that would really suck.