Do you time yourself while crocheting? I do, and here are 5 reasons why you should time yourself while crocheting too.
Why Time Yourself While Crocheting
Before you think I’m going about this whole crochet thing all wrong – yes, I realize that crocheting should be fun. Yes, I do enjoy crocheting and no, I do not always time myself. I also realize that I will get some comments saying that timing how long it takes to complete a row may not always be feasible (working on a granny square, for instance, each row will naturally take longer than the last) and there are times that I simply do not care how long it takes to make a project. I mostly crochet for pleasure, after all.
That being said, there are times that I DO time myself. Why would I do such a thing? Well… here are 5 reasons…
1. When Crocheting multiples of the same item
Remember when the Messy Bun Beanie pattern went viral? I had dozens of requests for that stinkin’ hat. Before accepting those orders I wanted to know how long each one would take me to crochet. One thing I’ve noticed since I started selling my crocheted wares is that if I don’t get the order completed quickly, many times people “forget” they ordered it at all (which, incidentally, is why I request half payment up front).
Once I figure out how long each takes I ask myself: can I feasibly complete all of these orders in a timely manner, or will it take me weeks? Timing yourself while crocheting the second or third hat (once you’ve got the pattern down) helps to make sure you can fulfill those orders in a reasonable amount of time AND that you are pricing them adequately. In the end I did not take most of the orders I could have, but deferred those sales to members of Heart Hook Home Crochet Community instead.
2. When preparing for a craft fair
For similar reasons as #1, I time myself when crocheting items for craft fairs or for donations. This helps me to plan what items to make and how many, as well as giving me a general idea of the quantity I will realistically be able to complete before the big day.
When crocheting for donations, like this Beanie for NICU Preemie Babies Pattern for example, I also time myself to work on my rhythm and my speed. Not that I need to be faster, but it is fun/interesting to see how quickly I can get each done. I know I’m a strange one (and its okay if you agree).
3. knowing how to price an item if the supplies were inexpensive
While I generally use this method to price my items for selling, sometimes that calculation is simply not feasible. Say I pay $3 for a skein of lightweight yarn for an order but the shawl takes me 10 hours to crochet, no way would I sell that shawl for $9. You dig? I can instead time the first few rows to get a general idea of how long it would take me to crochet that item and charge per hour instead.
4. Stay focused during tedious projects
If you’ve been crocheting for any length of time, chances are you’ve had that project that just never ends. Heck, I’ve got a half-finished blanket WIP in my yarn closet that’s been there for two years. Why? Because I just can’t get the gusto mustered to finish. That is mostly because the blanket is for myself instead of as a gift or for an order. But for those tedious projects that you just need to get finished, timing yourself and making a game of it can help push the project along.
5. Estimate when a project will be completed
I’ve seen several posts lately in my crochet group about finishing up Mother’s Day gifts, starting on Christmas gifts, last minute Teacher gifts etc. If you time yourself while crocheting, you’ll know whether you’ve got the time to finish that entire afghan before the holiday hits or not. If it takes you an average of 7 minutes to crochet one row and you’ve got 67 rows left, you know that you’ll need at least 469 minutes of solid crochet time to finish said project; about 8 hours. Can you reasonably get that project finished in X amount of days if you can only work an hour at a time? If the answer is “no”, you have the option to start a smaller project that you can get done in time.
Do I always time myself while crocheting? Of course not. But because I sometimes time myself, I know that it takes me an average of 3 minutes to crochet one of these crocheted stars, it takes me about 6 minutes to crochet a classic granny square, it takes me about a minute to make a pom pom and it takes me about 20 minutes to crochet one of these Aldi Quarter Keepers. Maybe I really am just strange, who knows. And I’m okay with that.
Do you ever time yourself while crocheting, or do you think you’ll start?
More crochet tips and tutorials:
How to Keep Straight Edges in Crochet
Understanding Crochet Gauge and How to Measure It
How to Add a Border in Crochet
Tips for Sizing Crochet Beanies + Master Beanie Pattern
How to Crochet the Invisible Decrease for Amigurimi Crochet