Party season is here! I have two lined up for this weekend and even more after that. I bring my knitting with me everywhere, but it’s particularly nice to have at parties because it’s a good ice-breaker and gives me something to do if my hands get twitchy. Here are my best tips for knitting, drinking, and having a merry time.
1. Choose the right project bag. The perfect project bag makes knitting while drinking and snacking so much safer for your yarn. If you’re going to be standing around a lot, choose a bag you can loop over your wrist, like in the photo above. A basic drawstring bag will do that trick. If you’re going to be sitting around, pick a standing project bag so your yarn can wiggle around freely without escaping onto a potentially-gross floor. Yarn on the floor probably isn’t a big issue if you’re at a friend’s house, but it’s cause for concern if the party is in the back room of a bar!
2. Pick a simple project. Stockinette, ribbing, garter stitch, and other basic stitch patterns and traditional construction methods are always safe choices. Avoid projects that require you to constantly read your chart or pattern. For one thing, it’s not very sociable to be staring at your phone or print-out, but it also gets plain-old-difficult if you’re in a dimly lit room and have had a few drinks. If your project has a complex bit, like a color work band on the brim of hat, get it out of the way before the party. The best project shouldn’t be something that takes too much attention because you’re going to get distracted.
3. Use counting stitch markers and regular stitch markers. Pile on the markers! If you use markers, stuff like basic shaping is a breeze, so you can stretch the definition of a simple project. Counting stitch markers will help you keep track of how many rows you’ve knit, and regular markers can remind you that you need to do something.
4. Prepare for the questions. I guarantee that you will be asked, “what are you working on?” more than once, and that just scratches the surface of knitting-related questions that come up at parties. It can get a little annoying after you’ve answered the same question three or four times, but the curiosity can also be a good opportunity to get a conversation going, so anticipate it and make the most of it.
5. Make peace with ripping back. It happens to the best of us. You’re having fun, and you blast past a shaping round or work decreases in the wrong spot. It’s not the end of the world, and the way I see it, I could either bring my knitting along and risk ripping back or not knit at all. I’ll always choose the former!