Did you know the fashion industry shows their lines 2 seasons ahead of time? In Spring they are showing their fall /winter line and in Fall they are showing their spring/summer line. That is when retail shops are putting in their orders. 6 months in advance of the season.
The same goes with yarn. I am viewing fall yarns in the spring and vice versa. It has taken some adapting on my part. I usually think about clothing minutes before I have an event to go to. So knitting something for an event is hard! I actually have to plan in advance!
So how long does it take to knit a sweater? There are many variables. Weight of yarn, size of garment, complexity of stitch and shape, knitting speed and experience and the quality of the written pattern.
I am sorry I am only using knitting here because I am not a serious crocheter. I will get Catherine (our crochet teacher) to help me with this information for another blog post my dear crocheters.
Since I have never been one to count how long it takes me to knit something I have done a little research. I found that an adult small simple stocking stitch sweater in worsted weight (#4) takes about 16 hours for an experienced knitter. A large sweater takes about 22 hours. So if you were to put in an 8 hour working day it would take 2 – 3 days to knit a simple sweater.
Of course there is also the time one needs to swatch (yes you should) and weave in ends, sew up and block (yes you should). This could add 5 hours or so, half a working day.
I am lucky and I can often knit 4 to 5 hours a day. So I can successfully get a small simple sweater done in a week if I need to. When I am knitting to order I usually ask for at least a month to get a simple sweater done. I will ask for 2 if there are cables or lace or colour knitting.
Ok let’s get down to the knitty gritty. If you have time to knit 1 hour a day (or about 7 hours a week)then it would take 16-22 days to get a sweater completed then another 5 days for the prepping and finishing for a total of 21 – 27 days for a completed sweater. It would be smart to allow double that time for any knitting or life issues that crop up. So if you want to knit a sweater for someone for Christmas the latest start date should be around October 25th.
If you want to knit more than 1 sweater for that special time of year more time needs to be devoted to knitting or an earlier start is needed. Or, of course heavier yarn could be used!
So plan in advance is my advice to me as well as all of you. If you knit for deadlines make sure to allow enough time to finish without the panicky overnight knit-a-thon!
Here are some of my estimates of how long it would take an experienced knitter to knit a simple item in worsted weight yarn.
Scarf- 5 hours
Gloves- 3 – 5 hours (because of fingers)
Socks- 5 hours
Mittens or hat – 3 hours
Plan your time and all will be fine!
Please remind me next time you see me!