Poll Results II: Why Our UFOs Become UFOs

Better Than Booties, but still a bit lonely

Now that we know that there are over 69,000 UnFinished Knitting Objects amongst our collective knitting baskets (it used to be 65,000, but I updated that result with the numbers that came in this weekend!), let's look at the results of the second survey to see why all those UFOs became UFOs in the first place:

27% of you consider yourself multi-taskers: therefore, you don't have UFOs, you have parallel works-in-progress. This is not surprising: Knitters are generous of heart, and I imagine that many of these simultaneous works-in-progress are gifts for family, charity, and friends. There's a knitter named Debbie in our office who is constantly knitting gifts and charity items, and she finishes more projects in a month than I finish in six months.

I admire that kind of organization and dedication. I have half a baby sweater for a young man who is no longer a baby (sorry, Shane); one baby sock for his sister who is also no longer a baby (sorry, Jackie); and the yarn, still in skeins, for matching hoodies for my two sisters (sorry, Liz and Carol!). Judging from these projects, plus a few more, it's not generosity I lack; it's the ability to wade through acres of stockinette stitch, as that seems to stop me every single time.

I am not alone in this: 10% of you said your projects often attain UFO status when you hit Stockinette Wasteland.

Conversely, 11% of you said that you were stuck on complex projects that required more concentration than you can muster in the midst of your busy lives.

Isn't that interesting? Too much stockinette, and we get stuck; too much intricate stitchery, and we get stuck. We knitters like to be challenged, but we can't always find the time to work on the intricate patterns we crave. So it seems like projects which fall somewhere in the sweet spot between endless stockinette and intricate stitch charts are the ones least likely to end up as UFOs. (As a designer, I'm going to keep that firmly in mind!)

There was another major reason for UFOs, one that wasn't terribly surprising: 11% of your UFOs are stuck at the finishing/sewing-up stage.

Stockinette Wasteland

Over and over, I hear how much knitters hate to seam up their knitting. And the series on blocking (Part One and Part Two) that I ran a couple months ago showed me how little we know about finishing a garment in general.

As for the remainder of the reasons:

7% of the UFOs are stuck on some tricky technical bit.

3% are the victim of Second Sock (or Second Sleeve!) Syndrome.

7% are ones you no longer really like.

6% are projects where you just don't have any motivation to finish!

19% of you had other answers, but there were hundreds and hundreds of those, and I haven't finished reading through those yet. I'll share some of the interesting ones as we go along.




Sandi Wiseheart
is the founding
editor of
Knitting Daily.


Post a Comment