Anyone who does crafts knows that there must be, and always is, a craft stash. It’s where the magic happens. It contains the supplies for that one project you haven’t started yet, the odds and ends from the last six projects that can get twisted together, and everything in between. It’s inspiration and a blank canvas and proof of old accomplishments.
It’s also usually completely and utterly chaotic. And it usually drives everyone, including and especially the crafter, completely nuts.
As a knitter, my craft stash is a yarn stash. And for quite a long time, I did a pretty good job keeping my yarn stash to a minimum. I bought the yarn I needed for a project, wound up the extra yarn, and I even did one project for Hannah’s wedding that used up some that extra yarn.
Then Facebook figured out I liked knitting; it started advertising yarn sales. And I have a lovely heathered purple that will make a gorgeous lace baby blanket…when I get around to it.
Then Granny and I toured yarn and quilting shops; Showers of Flowers was having a major clearout of a brand that had changed its packaging. And I have a soft yellow that will be a star-and-moon baby blanket…and a beautiful purple and blue variegated yarn that will be perfect for my favorite garter stick baby blanket…and a rich warm variegated brown yarn that might end up as an extra-wide scarf and fingerless mittens…when I get around to it.
Then I moved into Marilyn’s house, and Ellen lives downstairs. Ellen knits. Ellen knits a lot. Ellen taught me to make socks, and a new casting-on method, and the Kitchener stitch. And Ellen started to give me yarn.
At first, it was a bright variegated yarn for baby mittens that was white and pink and green and yellow and purple. Then it was a heathered grey to practice socks with. Then she started to clean out her yarn stash, and two giants paper grocery-bags full ended up on my bed.
Last week, it was TWO GARBAGE BAGS FULL. Ellen is really going to town cleaning things out! Some of it is just odds and ends. I’ll make a lot of smaller projects like mittens and muffs and hats. (I’ve never made a hat before.) There’s also a luxurious maroon mohair, enough to do something really cool with. And there are types of yarns I’ve never used before! There are wool and cotton and some bamboo and of course acrylic blends. There’s sock yarn and worsted yarn and chunky yarn and some kind of yarn that sends fuzzies off every which way. There’s yarn in every color imaginable!
Of course, this incredibly generous contribution to my yarn stash happened right before I get ready to move. But that’s the universe, isn’t it? It loves to laugh.
I meant it when I said Ellen was incredibly generous. I can’t even begin to calculate the worth of the yarn she gave me, and that’s not why she did it. She’s delighted to have someone use it and create something with it. Knitting is an art form, one that was passed on to me by Granny and Mom. And now, also by Ellen.
I have a lot of winding and sorting and storing to do with my yarn, but really what will be happening is a lot of daydreaming about what to make next. At the moment, I have to finish the project I have on needles (it’s a secret!) and then a couple of baby blankets for dear friends will be in the works. But once I get those done…let the creating begin!
Your homework: What do you stash? Why? Is it a source of inspiration or a source of chaos or both?