Conceptual Knitting, Design, Data, & Infographics

Have you ever done any Conceptual Knitting? The idea is, instead of using a pattern to determine what you knit, you use something observable around you to direct your knitting. Here are some great examples:

  • Sky Scarf- knitting rows the same color of the sky every day
  • My Year in Temperatures- knit rows in a color that represents each day’s high temperature
  • Mood Scarf- record your daily mood and knit a color that represents your mood
  • Game Knitting- create a “drinking game” of sorts, but instead of taking a shot when the “trigger” happens, change your yarn colors, or switch from knit to purl, or create and eyelet. This sounds especially fun for knitting groups. Gather your group, create a list of “triggers”, play the movie, and see what interesting things you knit!

By the way – if you wanted to do the Temperatures or Sky project for last year, you can use the Weather Channel’s Weather History page to look up temperatures and the weather for each day. Or you could do a smaller project by using the week or month averages. Pretty neat!

I’m trying to develop my own conceptual knitting project to create something that I would display as art. Some ideas I’ve had-

  • Beer Journal- keep a journal of the types of beers I drink (porter, stout, ale, belgian, etc.) and designate a coordinating color for each type.
  • Dream Journal- not entirely sure about this, but somehow translate my dream journal entries to knit representations.
  • Notable events- keep a record of all the important events this year. Designate different colors for national holidays, birthdays, important family occurrences, life changes (new job, relationship, house), and vacations or trips.
  • Book journal- I’ve finally been getting back into reading on a regular basis. Maybe after I finish a book, I knit a number of stitches equivalent to the pages in the book, and in the same color as the book cover. Or maybe designate colors based on book type (self-help, mystery, scifi, knitting book, etc.)
  • Meditation- Knit a number of rows equal to the number of minutes I spent meditating each day. Perhaps switch colors each day.
  • Growth charts of kids – okay this one isn’t for me at all, but I could see mothers loving this idea. Measure your baby each week and knit as many stitches as inches he/she is. Maybe switch colors each day? Perhaps somehow coordinate weight in there, too.

A great inspiration of mine is Information is Beautiful. I love the way David McCandless takes everyday (ahem, boring) data, and transforms it into something that’s both beautiful and meaningful. Browsing through his work gives me some ideas…

I’m still coming up with ideas. What conceptual knitting ideas do you have?

2 Replies to “Conceptual Knitting, Design, Data, & Infographics”

  1. Ally says:

    I have just had the same idea, after reading the same book ( information is beautiful). Knitting is a natural match for displaying quantities, I think. When I googled to see if anyone else had had the same idea, I found you! Great minds think alike etc. I will check out the rest of your site with interest.

    Reply
  2. Laura P. says:

    I was searching for more conceptual knitting ideas! Thanks for sharing your brainstorm. I also thought of scarf ideas for: veggies eaten (colors for specific veg or how exotic or typical they are), weight lost (see the color change as the lbs come off), money saving scarf (color change as goal is reached). Mine are all goal based, it seems. Interesting! I like the book scarf one you listed. 🙂

    Reply

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