What Kind of Knitter Are You 01

What Kind of Knitter Are You?

There are a number of people who have characterized their knitting personality in various ways. What kind of knitter are you and how do you determine that?

Criteria For Determining What Kind of Knitter Are You?

So here’s my Myer’s-Briggs version of determining what type of knitter you are.  Instead of ESTP, you can now tell people you are a WRKPSHAC/TH type personality.  What is your QueerJoe’s Knitter-Personality? Just choose the letter for each category that most closely describes you as a knitter and jam them all together to come up with your useless string of letters. It’ll be fun, they said.

Perfectionist or Whimsical Artist

U: There are knitters who will not be satisfied with a project until it is perfect. They will rip out projects that don’t come out exactly as they’d envisioned. They will endlessly start over until it works. This knit-type wouldn’t even consider leaving a mistake in their work. They are masters at fixing mistakes and have no worries about frogging back multiple rows because one stitch is a little looser than the surrounding stitches.

W:  Mistakes are just design elements waiting to adorn their project with character. They will either just start knitting and see what evolves, or start with a concept and adapt as the design takes shape. This type of knitter will see a sequence of mistaken stitches 10 rows back and highlight it with an embroidery of bright gold yarn.  They are the wabi-sabi artists of the knitting world.


Single Project Focused or Multiple WsIP

U: There are the dedicated knitters who enjoy working through a project to completion. Until the last end is woven in and the project has been blocked, they wouldn’t consider starting a new project. They can’t imagine why their current fantastic project isn’t completely enough and satisfying for their crafting urges. They take great comfort in working through to completion.

R: Then there are the knitters with a constant roaming eye. Always looking for the next project to cast on. The extreme multi-WIP knitter will often look through other project bags to find a needle size they need for a shiny, new project that needs their immediate attention. They are will sometimes be surprised and delighted to open a project bag in the corner of their craft room and immediately switch back to an old project they had forgotten was there. They take a lot of comfort in having many options to work on. A simple, no-concentration project so they can watch a subtitled movie or a project with beautiful colors that caught their eye.


Occasional Knitter or Always Knitter

O:  There are knitters who aren’t constantly knitting. It’s a lovely past-time.  Some also have other interests, such as they read a lot. Or they garden in the Spring and Summer and knit in the Autumn and Winter. There have been times they’ve put down their knitting for extended periods of time and then picked it back up as if they had never stopped. They enjoy being able to knit when yarn is calling to them. But they’re fine with when the interest in yarn wanes and they can focus on baking bread for a while too.

K:  Any season, these knitters will have a project on the needles. They couldn’t imagine not carrying around a small sock project just in case they get stuck waiting in a doctor’s office. Usually there is a history of incessant knitting in their past and they know this will be the way it is until family is called into to do something with their extensive knitting library and yarn stash. And even if these knitters have other hobbies or activities, they try to include knitting with them. Many of this type of knitter has switched to listening to audible books to make it easier to knit and “read” at the same time.


Production Knitter or Personal/Gift Knitter

P:  Do you knit to sell your finished projects?  Create treasures to donate for charity auctions?

Y:  Or are your items made for yourself, you family, and/or gifts for co-workers and friends?

Social Knitter or Individual Knitter

S:  Do you enjoy knitting in groups, meet-ups, on cruises and/or retreats? There are knitters that prefer to always surround themselves with other knitters. Especially while they are knitting. They have an easy way of carrying on an animated conversation whilst working on their current project.

I:  Some knitters would much prefer to knit by themselves. They can concentrate better on their knitting and enjoy a nice cup of tea and the company of their beloved pet. They find counting their stitches to be much more important than listening to a spouse or friend discussing grocery lists or plans for a picnic.

Knit Supply Hoarder or Selective Purchaser

H: Some knitters take great pride in the SABLE (Stash Acquisition Beyond Life Expectancy) status. They have all the tools, notions and needles filling up their crafting area or tucked into various spaces in their house or apartment.  They couldn’t imagine going into a yarn store or walking through a sheep and wool festival without making some purchase.  Their library of knitting books and magazines is extensive. And the question “What will you make with this new purchase of yarn?” is a seemingly ridiculous question for them, even though they’ve gotten good at making some shit up to satisfy whoever is asking.

L:  These knitters might have a large collection of yarn and tools and knitting books as well. But each purchase was made for a specific reason. They’re perfectly okay with purchasing the yarn they need as they need it. They have no sense of scarcity when it comes to yarn or knitting notions. They know they can always find a new project and get the yarn and tools necessary when they need it.

Tried and True Technique Knitter or Adventurous Knitter

I: The tried and true technique knitter is one who always makes the same sock design. This is a knitter who could always work on the same type of sweater project because it has proven itself to be enjoyable to knit and looks good on them and their families. Top-down raglan, stranded Fair-Isle or crew-neck pullover…they pick one and knit it expertly over and over.  “If it works, don’t fix it” is their motto.

A: The adventurous knitter loves trying new things. Their motto is “If a project doesn’t teach me something new and/or interesting, I’m not interested.” A new stitch technique or a conceptual idea of knitting is always intriguing for this type of knitter.  They never have two similar sweaters in their vast collection of hand-knits. This knit-type is a frequent visitor to YouTube tutorials for inspiration.

Color or Texture Knitter

C: The color-knitter loves everything about intarsia and stranded/Fair-Isle knitting.  How colors blend and join and meld are what makes this knit-type tick. The color-knitter has built a stash and a library around all-things color. Alice Starmore and Kaffe Fassett rule in this person’s knit-library.

T: The texture-knitter is only concerned with fabric differentiations. Sculpted/cabled fabrics, entrelac, tight ribbing and bobbles excite this knit-type.  They are all about drape and the tactile aspects of knitting. Their stash and library also reflect this. Yarns made with fibers and dyed to show off texture best.  And a knit-library filled with stitch dictionaries and

Desired Result of Knitting

N: Some knitters will only knit if it brings them joy. The Marie Kondo-knitters don’t want complexity of tortuous stitch combinations ruining their experience of enjoying the craft.

H: The knitter who is completely obsessed finds joy to be irrelevant. Or, more accurately, they find joy in all aspects of knitting. Even the very complex and difficult.  They thrill to learn how to do Niebling lace on quintuple-zero needles or execute a K7Tog using Portuguese knitting technique.

Current Knitting

Since I am an R, A, and H I couldn’t stick with just one project. And the new project had to be something where I learned a new technique and it had to be complex!

I did do some work on the latest Close To You Shawl.

Close To You Shawl 05-27-20 01

You can’t tell easily from photos of this yarn and garment, but it’s got a “oil slick” sort of rainbowy effect. The vivid colors and the glitter make me feel I’m looking at a puddle on a gas station parking lot with the sun shining down on it.

The shiny new, complex project is the Resolve Cowl by Kyle Vey.

Resolve Cowl 05-27-20 01

Two things about Kyle’s design that make it irresistible for a WRKPSHAC/TH. First, he re-designs 1×1 ribbing to make it more even and clean-sculpted. Second, he introduces a concept of “controlled marling” that I needed to attempt. For the Marie Kondo-knitter types, you will HATE this design. But for me, it’s practically custom-designed.

14 comments on “What Kind of Knitter Are You?

  1. I think we change in our lives as knitters. Like artists, we have periods in our calling. Can I compare my Fair Isle adventures to Picasso’s Blue Period? And your Niebling period, Joe. I remember so well waiting for pictures of your next beautiful piece of lace. You inspired me and, I am sure, many others to try our hand at creating with threadlike yarn and tiny needles.
    I used to rip back for the smallest mistake, but now tend to follow Jean Mile’s attitude – would it be noticed by someone riding by on a galloping horse? I used to try every sock heel that was promoted by other knitters, and now I only knit socks like the ones my mother made which are, for me, the most comfortable.
    I might be a NRKYLIH now, but who knows what i will be next week.

  2. Very true and very kind Ron…thanks. Maybe we need to expand the Myer’s-Briggs model to include a new dimension of change over time. Scatter graphs with trend lines might be required. Anyone do multi-regression analysis?

    1. I like to think that I am evolving as a knitter. In the past, I could never leave a mistake in after I had seen it. Now? I’m more likely to just let it go.

      I used to be a monogamous knitter, but I am enjoying having a few projects on the go at the same time. I used to never be not knitting; now, I have learned how to enjoy the occasional break.

      I focus more on the knitting process rather than the end product. I do like to socialize while knitting, but I feel like I am becoming more and more introverted as I get older.

      I have already reached SABLE status, but I have also not purchased a skein of yarn yet in 2020. I like to return to my tried and true methods, but there is always something new to be learned with each new project.

      I will always be a color person over texture, but I have been experimenting with combining both together. I love complicated projects, but I can appreciate the benefits of Netflix knitting now as well.

      And making predictions using regression analysis? Exactly what I am trying to teach remotely right now…

      1. I think you and some other commenters are right. Knitting styles are more fluid than personality traits ala Myer’s-Briggs.

        As for what you’ll be teaching remotely, based on the scatter-graph and trendline for you, it appears you’ll be teaching color blending and texturing using marled yarn techniques. Or cabled, multi-colored sculptural yokes on Icelandic-like sweaters.

  3. Ever the over-achiever: WRKPYSIHITH

    Are there correlations to M-B? INFP here (though I fell off the end of the I axis!).

  4. WRKYSHITN — that’s a mouthful. But then I also found that there were categories that I didn’t fit into at all. Love the colors in your Close to You!

  5. I do agree with the others that change is always possible. I tend to be totally fickle, jumping from one project to another, but then settling down with something and seeing it to the end. Lately, I am a lot more monogamous than I used to be – who knew? I will always be susceptible to a good enabler, youtube videos, and beautiful pictures of knitting in progress. That beautiful Resolve Cowl pattern is a case in point, with one configuration after the other simply beautiful in its own right. I find myself drawn to the lower contrast ones – the colors just seem to blend into each other – so cool. You’d think I’d never seen a fade, right? But this is different, isn’t it?

  6. My sentence was passed as: UROYIHLACTN!.
    I have only been knitting for 4-5 years but I learned very early on that I would never be a monogamous knitter. H: I very quickly acquired, in both books and yarns, several lifetimes of projects and equipment. U/W: I’m more likely to let a mistake pass as a design anomaly if its beyond my repair skills these days but it still niggles that it’s there. R: I am definitely a multi-project man than a Finished Object knitter. O: I have far too many other interests, both textile and otherwise, to be a constant knitter but I’m trying to discipline myself to knit at least a row of the current main project every day. I believe that Ravelry is evil: way too much temptation! Y: I have recently moved away from knitting just for myself to feeling confident enough of my work to give finished items away as gifts. Not for profit? [S]/I: I do go to knit groups but I prefer to knit alone or with my partner (who has 50 years knitting/crochet experience more than me!). L: This is what I aspire too. Just waiting for more yarn to be delivered! A: my ambition exceeds my ability but I’ll fearlessly wade into double knitting, cabling without a cable needle or intarsia. It has been said that my yarn de-barfing skills are impressive. C: absolutely me: Marie Wallin; Di Gilpin; Alice & Jade Starmore; Hazel Tindall. Bring it on! T: cables get my vote, not sure about bobbles or boucle. N: Big projects take endurance and discipline. Starting projects easier than finishing them! Thanks Joe. We really enjoyed this analysis. Must go and lie down in a darkened room now…

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