Friday, 29 January 2016

Yarn Talk

Throughout January, I had an epiphany. It's not unusual to have this kind of epiphany at this time of year; the start of a new year usually prompts such changes, but I realised I was weighed down with STUFF. So I sheeped out and bought Marie Kondo's best-selling The Life Changing Magic of Tidying. I haven't even got through to the part of how to tidy, but the idea of having objects that 'spark joy' only really struck a chord with me, and so I started with the place that I find is supposed to 'spark joy', and that's my yarn. I've seen bigger stashes than mine, but I felt I just had too much yarn that had no intention of using, that I had gone off, or that was left over from work projects. So I had a big clear out, swapping and selling what I didn't want, or donating it.

Here's what's left of my acrylic:
And I've kept a small stash of Debbie Bliss Cashmerino in this basket too. It was overflowing with Stylecraft Special DK before, so I kept these few colours (2 x Parchment, Forest, Gold, Old Rose and walnut) either for a shawl (possibly My Rose Valley's Nordic Shawl, or Joanne Scrace's Acer) or a granny square blanket. I've also kept the mint, cream and blue from my Annell Rapido collection as I do love these colours. This basket now sparks joy!

I also organised my cotton stash, only keeping my very favourites (some Rowan Handknit Cotton, and a collection of Drops Paris) so they fit snugly into a birdcage that my friend gave me some years ago. I've invested in a cheapo yarn winder, and I wound my super chunky collection nicely, and used up the few balls of chunky that I had, making some mittens and using the chunky Natura XL for a work project. My aran collection now consists of just a few balls of leftovers from personal projects, in case repairs or alterations are needed. I organised all my Debbie Bliss baby cashmerino into one of those big organza bags that Wool Warehouse sends, and have another of my favourite DK yarns. My 'Luxury' yarns all got kept,l of course.
I mean, why wouldn't I? NO FILTER! These yarns really are this gorgeous! I have here (clockwise from top left) some precious The Fibre Company Terra, The Uncommon Thread Lush Worsted, Eden Cottage Yarns Titus 4ply, Collinette Jitterbug, Eden Cottage Oakworth DK (a very generous gift from instagram friend @penelopemakes), DyeForYarn Silk Fingering in a colour exclusive to Loop called Golden Beehive, and that lovely SparkleDuck Baby Camel/Silk. To be fair, virtually all of these skeins will be assigned to knitting projects.

Really what has prompted this yarn stash management drive is the wonderful knitting designer, blogger and podcaster Helen Stewart of Curious Handmade. I've been devoted to her podcasts this month on how she's tackling stash management, and how she's learning to love what she's got. So I'm using up some stash- some baby knits (ssshhh! they're a secret for a friend!) and a shawl for me- some selfish, enjoyable makes to make me appreciate what I've got.

Go have a listen to Helen's podcast and see if you can't get inspired to organise your stash, and join in the #uknewyearstashswap over on Instagram to see if you can get the yarn you've been dreaming of. And join me on Ravelry to see what projects I have queued up and the knit- and crochet-alongs I'm joining.
xxx

10 comments:

  1. I really need to do this. I've had balls of yarn sat there for years that hasn't been touched, although now that I've grasped the concept of crochet, I'm hoping to use some of it up x x

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    1. It's hard to tackle it to be honest, it's easy to say 'oh I'll use that in a blanket' or whatever but I know in reality I don't get time to make blankets anymore. But if you love it, keep it!

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  2. Replies
    1. Thanks lovely. It's nice to be able to see it all properly now, and to be able to plan and use it for things that I will love or be treasured gifts x

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  3. Such an admirable - and pretty - stash of wool! I do surprise myself with sensibility when it comes to starting a project, and really do manage to use wool from the baskets first though inevitably there will be the project that I must make and some other wool has to be purchased. And then I look at the baskets and can't bring myself to get rid of any of it as the plan is to make many blankets to use up all those scraps! One day!

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    1. I certainly have a lot of 'one day' yarn too! But it seems more manageable now, and I feel better not hanging on to it too. Hooray for yarn!

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  4. This has seriously made me want to sort through my stash again RIGHT NOW. Also, was keeping my ears (?) peeled for another good, crafty podcast, so will check out Helen's. :)

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    1. I have found the stash management really liberating! And I'm a bit obsessed with knitting podcasts, do you know of any crochet podcasts?xxx

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  5. Hi Kath, this is a great idea, something I must tackle too, so pleased you still have your Eden cottage yarn xxx

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  6. Hi Kath, this is a great idea, something I must tackle too, so pleased you still have your Eden cottage yarn xxx

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