|This basket holds a fraction of the "odd balls" I collect in a year's time!
Here's a problem that has plagued me throughout my knitting life: What is one to do with all the little, and sometimes not-so-little, bits of yarn left over when a project is complete? In the past, I've worried that my inability to rid my closet of yarn odds and ends may be a borderline obsession.
But in fact, I have on occasion cleaned out that yarn closet with no serious side effects. Like the time we moved from Colorado to Massachusetts. I'd collected more yarn than I'd realized, and frankly, I felt a bit embarrassed about it. Not to mention that it seemed silly to move it all across the country.
I kept a lot of the yarn, mind you, but I did fill three large lawn-and-leaf bags with the "unwanted" bits. Our town had a Habitat for Humanity thrift shop that sold all kinds of things, so I loaded up the yarn and drove over. When I asked the man in attendance if they would be interested in taking the yarn, he peeked in the bags and said, "Wow, that's a lot of yarn! No problem. In fact, I'll bet the women who work here will buy most of it before it even hits the shelf!"
We've been in Massachusetts for 11 years now, and the closet is once again full. Stashed away are several sweaters' worth, too much sock yarn to talk about, and enough for plenty of hats, gloves, scarves and shawls. It's possible that I could knit it in my lifetime, but frankly, I'm not the type to stop buying new yarn just because I have a stash.
So once again, I'm cleaning out the closet and packing up yarn to donate. While I'm at it, I'm clearing out a bunch of other stuff that has accumulated and is no longer used by my husband or by me. And I've found a local charity that will take everything I have to give except the old television set.
So my question is, how do you deal with your yarn stash? Do you keep it all, even if you can't possible knit it all? Are you more circumspect in your buying so that you don't have a huge stash? And what about all the little bits -- small or partial skeins that you can't really make anything with? I'd love to hear from you, and if enough of you answer, you can read all about it in the next issue. In the meantime ...
Editor of Creative Knitting newsletter
Judith Durant loves to knit and to write, and writing about knitting is the best. She has authored, co-authored and edited many books about knitting and beadwork, including Never
Knit Your Man a Sweater, Knit One, Bead Too and the best-selling One-Skein Wonders series. She is currently co-authoring a technique book with Dorothy T. Ratigan
titled Knitting Know-How: Techniques, Lessons and Projects for Every Knitter's Library, which will be published in July 2012. Visit Judith on the web at JudithDurant.com.
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