Sunday, October 10, 2010

renewing the vow of yarn chastity

I'm done buying yarn. I really mean it this time. I haven't bought that much in the past two years, certainly not as much as I would have liked, so honestly I thought things were pretty much under control. I bought three skeins (and, okay, three sweater lots, but I used two of those lots immediately, and four pounds of merino/silk/cashmere for $100 was an insanely good deal) in 2009, and six skeins plus one sweater lot (also immediately put to use) in 2010. That really doesn't seem too bad in the scheme of things.

Tonight I finally grasped the true state of affairs. I was looking for a skein of undyed Malabrigo that I was pretty sure I had put into my personal stash, so I went on the hunt in my cedar chest.

First I had to remove all the crap on top of it. I know I should post a photo, but it's just too embarrassing, really. There are two big tote bags filled with half-finished projects, odds and ends of skeins, and dyeing disaster skeins that I entertain a feeble hope of salvaging through overdyeing. There is a large wicker basket overflowing with more of the same. There is a flat-rate priority box full of yarn that I got two (three?) years ago and haven't even opened, because I haven't gotten to the project I was going to use it for. There is a box of undyed samples from various yarn companies--okay, I'll give that one a pass. Maybe that actually has a legit reason to stay in the house.

Mind, this is after I pruned all the yarn I was absolutely, positively sure I would never get around to using. I gave some to friends and much more to my child's preschool. They don't care if I had a sudden coughing fit and my hand twitched at the wrong moment and dumped black dye in inappropriate places, or if the spin dryer ate a chunk of a skein and felted it beyond all hope. That was an 18-gallon Rubbermaid tote's worth of fiber that I offloaded last year.

After moving all the crap onto the sofa, I opened the lid of the chest. It was like Pandora's box in reverse--beauty and admiration came spilling out, leaving only broken promises and hopeless dreams behind. I was going to make mittens out of that yarn. Those skeins were supposed to be transformed into longies. That set would make the perfect stripey child's sweater. And those other 20 or 30 or 40 skeins or, um, more--well, when I decided to bring you home, I promised I would love you forever and make something beautiful out of you. I don't know where it all went wrong but I swear, it's me, not you.

It is just criminal to have so much beautiful yarn and to never have time to knit it. Time to face reality--I need to destash. This round is going to be tough; I did all the easy stuff last time, and now there's going to be some pain involved. I'd like to have my living room back, and it won't be easy.

It might be fun to do a Survivor: Scarlet's Stash Edition. I feel a little spark of hope amid the despair after all.
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