Using What I’ve Got: Yarn

I thought I was going to be able to open this blog post dramatically with a claim that I have amassed and used the equivalent metre-age (yardage) as a percent of the distance to the Moon. Thankfully, however, my yarn stash total – used and unused – works out to just under 26 km/16.2 mi. Who would have thought that taking a step back and assessing how much I have makes the volume of it less daunting? I’ve just frogged/unraveled a blanket, have left over yarn from gifts I made, as well as abandoned-projects-that-are-more-technical-than-my-skill-level yarn – so, I’m certainly not lacking craft materials.

The gap between my desire to make something and my skill level has only been the cause of over-buying yarn once. The remaining 23 km of yarn comes from either left over yarn from completed projects (I’m not great at estimating how much yarn is needed for something I’m making without a pattern), or from the idea of a project and the mixed feeling of “I want to have enough to make what I want, when I want” and “if I don’t have enough, I can’t make the piece.” Oh, and I’m a sucker for marketing when things are in my favourite colourways.

Most of my yarn, clothing, jewellery, home decor, and cookware fit at least one of these colours

Yarn, and other craft supplies, is one of the no-buy categories for the year – and I am planning to use it for various projects (maybe I’ll get a jump start on making for the holiday season this year). Crocheting is one of my hobbies that I can do on autopilot once I’ve figured out what type of stitch or pattern of stitches I’m using, so I like to pair it with listening to a podcast or catching up on my “Watch Later” playlist on YouTube. Or, if I’m feeling spicy, I can be alone with just my thoughts and not have any media on while crafting. For reference’s sake for project size, I’ve made both scrunchies and blankets, which are equally rewarding to me.

I have no desire to monetize this hobby. Frankly, dealing with the post office is about 30% of the reason I don’t want to, but the other part is the “quiet” that I have when I’m working away at any project. If something is for myself, it’s allowed to be imperfect and wonky. If it’s a gift, I’ll make a bit more of an effort or go over a line of stitches twice if necessary. In essence, I’m genuinely doing it for the fun of it and my brain is happy to see a physical representation of my efforts (as opposed to the majority of my work being digital or otherwise abstract). I don’t feel that I need to maximize my skill level, compete with anyone else (whether for sales or complexity of projects), or be perfect (crochet is great for this: messed up a stitch? Undo it and start again).

What I do desire, however, is to be able to minimize the stash of yarn. I find that when I have many projects going at once regardless of medium, I pick up new projects but never finish them. I tend to slow down when the stash is smaller, actually completing the projects I’ve started. I think two projects – one short-term, one long-term – is reasonable to have going at the same time, but more than that is unmanageable for me.

My major take away would be that slowing down and being more intentional would also be beneficial to my personal/for fun projects. Oh, and also remembering to make things for myself as well, not just as gifts.

Like this headband, made for me by me 🙂

What’s coming up next:

Next week will start off with looking at the rest of my categories for inventories, as well as the products that I’m looking to finish up using. Thanks for reading!