How Long It Takes

Baggy is so happy he doesn't have to tape his paws.
Baggy is so happy he doesn’t have to tape his paws.

Ever wonder how long it takes to crochet or knit objects?

Here are a few things for you to know.

First, I am a crocheter who knits. This means I crochet faster than I knit, so somethings take me longer than others. It’s one of those things, like some people draw better than they paint.

Estimated working hours:
2-4 hours    Fingerless mitts, coffee cup cozies
4-6 hours    Crochet neckwarmers (short scarves), small animals like turtles, ducky balls or micropods, kids character hats, wool felted wallets and purses
6-8 hours    Medium size animals like elephants, ladybugs
8-24 hours    Knit and Crochet Scarves, larger animals like teddy bears
2-4 weeks    Shawls
4 weeks +    Afghans

Why does it take it that long?
With handmade, hand crafted items, my hands are doing all the work. There are no machines working for me. When I crochet animals, I have to make sure each stitch is extra tight, so little fingers cannot pull out the fiberfill stuffing. The strain of working 10 years on crochet animals has taken its toll on my hands and fingers, which aren’t getting any younger. Arthritis is now part of the equation. So, I use Kinesio Tape on my fingers, which helps compress the tendons tight. Because I want to keep my hands as long as I am here, it’s important to take breaks. Although, I have been known to “power through” on projects, this isn’t always the best practice.

About the creative process.
Crochet and knit, require a certain amount of focus. Especially when it’s done by hand.  The creative process at the individual level isn’t like manufactured processes where there is a team of people to provide input and samples and labor. Sure you could run to some big box store and get a wool scarf or some mittens for a few dollars.  And I wouldn’t blame you, if you did.  But I can guarantee that it won’t have the same amount of attention and care put into the making of the product that a hand-crafted or hand-made item does.

Creating new ideas in knit or crochet is often trial and error. Sometimes the best laid plans unravel, intentionally, because it’s not working out to a quality or standard I hold myself to. (How many artists and designers out there can relate?)