On Keeping A Knitting Stash

© Knit Purl

I've kept a stash pretty much since the beginning of my knitting career. I'm not sure why - maybe it's because I've always been a collector, and I love daydreaming about all the possibility contained within the skeins. While I adore my collections, I don't really organize them in any sense. I see plenty of color-coordinated yarn closets and stash inspiration online, and sigh with envy. My stash doesn't even remotely resemble these well-manicured yarn galleries.

I've been stashing for about ten years now. The older stash skeins currently reside in unattractive plastic storage bins in my basement.  You know, the kind you would use for out-of-season clothing, or perhaps a comic book collection. Utilitarian, but not beautiful by any means. Within the storage bins, the yarn for each project is sorted into individual zip-top bags. I keep the more recent, most exciting skeins in my craft room, which has different projects separated out into Ikea wicker bins. But that is it, as far as organization goes. 

This isn't inspiring. Maybe I should tell you about how I would ideally organize my stash. Perhaps someday, I will whittle my yarn collection down to my most treasured skeins, focusing on the ones that bring me joy. (Read Marie Kondo, if you haven't already.) If I don't remember buying the yarn, or if I don't remember what I was going to use it for, out it goes. My ideal stash size  would contain enough yarn for a few months worth of knitting, and the yarn would be organized in a beautiful wooden hutch with a clear glass doors, to see inside. Maybe something like this:


I like the idea of having a stash. However, I feel like it's not doing anything for me if I am not actually using it. At this point in my life, my stash keeps growing, and I have trouble using my older skeins. There are too many beautiful tempting yarns to play with at work. I love to try the newest yarns that arrive, and I love to choose new projects based on things I see online, or what customers bring in. The yarn store is functioning as my second, more accessible stash. I fall in love with new beautiful skeins, and neglect the old ones. 

Maybe someday I will come up with projects to combine my old stash with new, and give some love to my older skeins. But until then, I will continue to enjoy new yarn projects and dream about my future yarn hutch. 

September 12, 2016 by Oleya Pearsall
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