Creative ideas for non-finishers?

Okay, so here's the deal. This is my first Christmas knitting and as a result, my first Christmas gifting knitting.

I've finished 4 sets of clogs for all the kids and I'm working on a scarf for my, um, my, what-do-I-call-her? - my partner's ex-wife (okay, that's your first assignment...what do I call her...and be careful, we have a great relationship!)

Anyway, I digress (as usual)

So, I've done the math and unless I knit 17 1/2 hours a day between now and Christmas morning, the scarf is not going to be completed.

What are some creative ways that you way-above-average creative guys have communicated an unfinished gift?

Thanks in advance,


A classic is the item on the needles, maybe with a picture of the complete object.



Yes, I've even heard of people who have gone so far as to wrap a skein or two of the yarn and a picture and not even start the thing! You just have to keep knitting on it and finish it before 4th of July. Don't worry, she'll be flattered that you're taking the time to do it.
Have a merry,

knitanddestroy's picture

The story is what you want to tell this person. The relationship is obviously good, but there is some inherent strain built in (guessing). Why not write a short synopsis of how the perfection is what you are after. Half-assing is never an option, so your performance is directly related to your feelings for her and in the same way as time has built your relationship time will also build her a gift for the ages. A simple note (hand written, not typed) can still awe. A swatch of the colors you are using in the pattern you are choosing with such an explanation will go the mile you are currently unable to walk for her. Peace for the Holidays.

Parrot's picture

Thanks for bringing this up. I'm in the same boat . . great intentions of having a finished scarf by Christmas, but runnig behind schedule, and not to mention the shipping time.

I like Michael's idea of giving the item on the needles, with a promise to finish it sometime over the course of the 12 days of Christmas, which extends your "deadline" until January 6. I'm making a scarf for one of my son's teachers, but it won't be done to Winter Break (sic) is over, which is when he'll give it to her.

As for what you call "her," how about just calling her, "my friend (insert name here)" and not worrying about her status as a former spouse of anyone? Just a thought.


Aaronknits's picture

Agreeing with Peter. If she is your friend, that's all you need to refer to her as.

I just ran my horse through that list and came out with lance intact. Sent a note with a check that said the other half of the present wasn't finished yet but to use this in the meantime to share a beer or two with an old, large, bearded fat guy in red.

Hey! I'm about spreading the Joy . . .
आदि लक्ष्मी

kylewilliam's picture

I think it'd be neat to knit a miniature version of the scarf (like for a doll or something) - and put in a note saying this (only bigger) will be on its way in the new year - (ok now that I wrote it I think it's a silly idea) - I don't know how I feel about sending a partially finished gift out - it kind of looks like that person was lower on your priority list than other people - If it were me (I'm in the same boat with one of my gifts) I would ditch the knitted item for the holiday gift, and give something else.... I'm still going to finish the piece and give it to this person, but it will be unrelated to the holidays... I'd rather wrap it up and give it to them because I love them (and for no particular holiday) than give them an unfinished item with a note that says "I didn't have time to finish your gift because I was focusing my attentions on everyone else, and life gets busy this time of year - so while I did my prioritizing, I decided to put your gift aside because I knew you'd understand"...

OH - you asked about what you should call this relative - I would just use her name... she doesn't have to be anything more than your friend - and at the end of the day, what more could you ask for.

I hope this doesn't sound grumpy - I'm just trying to make a point that sending unfinished gifts could be taken wrong - and relying on our friends' realizing that we're busy, etc. etc. isn't fair.