Sometimes it really does happen

In one of her books on knitting, the Yarn Harlot writes about the various knitting afflictions that can happen from time to time – Second Sock Syndrome, for one. Start-itis is probably the most common, and I know I certainly suffer from that a couple of times a year pretty reliably. (Notably: as soon as the first whiff of fall hits the air, suddenly seven new sweater projects seems completely reasonable.)

Cannon St. Pullover

I never really expect to get hit with the rare yet related ‘Finish-it-up-itis’ that Stephanie refers to, but you know I think I might have a touch of it. On Friday evening I cast off the collar on this stockinette pullover, a basic bottom-up-my-style-of-basic-sweater pattern I’d been working on last summer and then neglected. I tried it on right away, it fit perfectly (always a bit of a concern when so much time passes between cast on and cast off), and immediately I wanted to finish something else.

Pi Shawl - so close

My nearest target (i.e. quickest) is probably the current pair of socks on my needles that are about 40% done, but what I really have my sights on now is this Pi Shawl that’s been my intermittent knitting companion since the fall. I’m just ready to start the garter stitch knitted-on border that will seal the deal (since knitted-on borders are really just long exaggerated cast-offs)…although it is a knitted-on border for around 600 sts, so. Not exactly short work.

Nonetheless, i will persevere. I leave next Tuesday for a week’s vacation in San Francisco & environs, and in my imagination (which is always so productive), this Pi Shawl will join the cast-off projects list before then. All a girl can do is try!
Finish-it-up-itis, maybe you can stick around for a bit and we’ll get some stuff done.

Happy Wednesday!



Pattern: Personal pullover pattern, completion/release TBD
Yarn: Berroco Ultra Alpaca, ‘berry pie mix’

Pattern: Pi Shawl (July shawl), directions in Knitter’s Almanac by Elizabeth Zimmerman
Yarn: Malabrigo Sock, in ‘eggplant’ (in progress)




  1. I get Finish-it-up-itis occasionally, but it generally runs its course before I run out of things to finish.

  2. That is a good affliction to have! I am usually immune, sadly

  3. I’ve been having the same feelings, Glenna, and coincidentally traveling to East Bay Area this weekend. I will be the passenger on a 9-10 hour trip from Las Vegas area to Oakland. It is such a well-known route for me that I have to take along plenty of books on CD and knitting. I’m in the midst of two sweaters to trade with my hair stylist, but, of course, will take along a summer sweater project just in case I finish the little cardigans.

    Hope you have a nice trip, have knitting to fill every available moment, and return home with some finished projects.

  4. I also suffer from start-it is. Only 7 things on the needles? I haven’t counted lately! If a WIP sits hidden in a drawer does it still count as a WIP? ha ha

  5. I recently went through and had rip-it-out-itis. Nearly all of my projects on the needles were frogged with the exception of a couple I really love or are near completion. Hopefully, I’ll finish more in July than in June.

  6. Diane ble · ·

    Have a great vacation and if you finish that shawl you may need it in SF. I think I wore a windbreaker when I visited there in August many years ago. Enjoy.

  7. Diane ble · ·

    I meant to say that I needed a windbreaker almost all the time. With the exception of being directly in the sun or in a protected spot.

  8. Jennifer · ·

    Visit some cool yarn shops! And report back ……

  9. I seem to get finish-it-up-itis every January. I take advantage of it to whittle down my WIPs before startitis takes hold again.

    Right now I am in the midst of the (rare for me) knit-only-one-project-at-a-time-itis. It seemed to be triggered by participating in Sock Madness and trying to get through as many rounds as possible this year. After 3 1/2 straight months of knitting intricate socks, my wrists began to complain, so I’ve been working on a sweater for a few days. Even though my wrists are back to normal, I find I still want to work on this sweater (to completion?!) before going back to more-suited-to-summer-weather projects like socks.

  10. Lots of people think California = warm weather. Yes, depending on where you visit.
    If you want warmer weather in San Francisco, go in the Fall. Never know for sure what you’ll get in the summer but likely morning fog. But even this changes depending on what part of the city.

    Glenna, I don’t understand what you mean by this: “(since knitted-on borders are really just long exaggerated cast-offs)” …. it’s not clicking in my brain. Explain?

  11. I am looking forward to the pattern for the pullover sweater. Always good to have a pattern for a wardrobe staple. Ultra Alpaca is one of my favorite yarns so the combination looks like a winner to me.

  12. I have occasional bouts of this, usually if I haven’t finished anything in ages and it feels like I never finish anything. Like all these conditions a lie down and/or stiff drink helps it pass.

  13. Marie Roche · ·

    I too am looking forward for your pattern release as this staple looks like a winner!

  14. oh—these ‘diseases’ are so real……i haven’t been struck by the ‘finish-it-up-itis’ in way too long. care to send some of those ‘bugs’ my way???

  15. […] at: In one of her books on knitting, the Yarn Harlot writes about the various knitting afflictions that […]

  16. I hear ya there. I am really annoyed at myself for starting way to many things and not getting things done, I have 3 scarfs that have to be done and in the post to the USA no later then November.

    I would love to have a very short WIP list but just when I think its almost done Startisit hits again

  17. eatcoastal · ·

    You can do it! And do enjoy your time in SF. Check out ImagiKnit while you’re there!

  18. I always always always have a bad case of start-it-is! 🙂 I think you will be fine and recover shortly – but copious chocolate and some lovely tasting coffee should sort that out – tea & biscuits are my go-to 🙂 jenny xx

  19. the sweater looks really nice, and I hear you on the Pi shawl bind off – the ones I did seemed to take forever to finish, but it was so worth it, I love them. I have been thinking of another, and your pretty one inspires me…

  20. There’s nothing like a trip to inspire some finishing!

    I definitely had a touch of this during the spring. I got some longstanding WIPs (I refuse to call them UFOs) finished and now I’m happily casting on for new things. It’s good when the itis-es balance each other out.

  21. Any chance that finish-up-itis would be contagious? I’m hoping I catch it. Lovely pi shawl there!

  22. Those are beautiful projects! I’m sure the shawl will be worth all those sts when you’ve finished!

  23. Oooh I hope your trip to San Francisco is fog free. I went one July and every time I turned a corner to see some scenic view it was covered in fog. I enjoyed it anyway, such a wonderful city!

  24. Sebastian · ·

    A very nice blog

  25. […] on a stockinette sweater and some plain ribbed socks. The sweater (above) is a cardigan version of the stockinette pullover I finished last month, of my own brain and for a planned fall release. It’s a simple sweater pattern intended to be […]

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