The Matching Game
(or Why, Oh Why Do I Have All This Yarn?!)
Back in 2007, when I lived in Southern California I did a blog post HERE detailing my quite vast and large yarn stash.
Over 1,000 balls/hanks/skeins of yarn.
Looking back, (will I be sorry for saying this?) I believe that's too much yarn for one person to have. And when I moved to San Francisco, I sold or gave away almost all of it.
Here it is, seven years later (2014), I still have way too much yarn, but nowhere near the astronomical amount I had before. Today, I still hold onto sweater quantities that quietly wait for me to find the right pattern so it can be knit up.
I have a few bags of random skeins that I like for one reason or another, and a few small bins with special types of yarn that are destined for certain types of projects (like felting).
I have a bin of yarn for swatching, and a big bag of spinning fiber (think big suitcase and you'll get the picture).
Of course, I also have the yarn and fiber and materials for my dyeing projects that I sell in my SHOP.
There's a part of me that finds comfort in knowing that I have yarn "Just In Case"... but the reality is I rarely knit projects with it. I wonder if others do this same thing:
1. Decide I must knit something "new"
2. Find a pattern after much sorting and ruffling of papers, and digging online and Ravelry
3. Feeling happy that I just purchased 2 or 3 new patterns on Ravelry that I LOVE but am not quite ready to knit.
4. Go to stash.
5. Dig through stash and make a giant mess of the studio, looking for a certain yarn that HAS to be in here. Somewhere.
6. Find yarn I love but have no pattern to match with it.
7. Get frustrated and decide I really want to knit one of the patterns I bought, but have trouble finding the right yarn in my stash
8. Head out to my LYS and look at their yarn
8(a). Try not to be distracted by other yarns calling my name.. or needle felting... or quilting... or needlepoint... or... (you get the picture)
9. Find the PERFECT yarn (but not for the pattern I had decided to knit) - now I want to knit a different pattern but of course I didn't bring that one with me
10. Stand in the middle of the yarn shop with my iPhone logging onto Ravelry or searching for yardage and yarn details for said pattern.
11. Find (or not) the details, settle on yarn, support the yarn shop by making a purchase, and head home.
12. Get home, and cast on.
See? A big dig through the yarn hoard and nothing found. I STILL ended up going out to buy yarn (and of course, the yarn that's in my stash was also purchased... meant for a project, someday...)
The stash that never gets used is sort of like having a refrigerator full of food but not finding anything appealing to eat. (It's a lovely problem to have, I suppose!) -and sometimes the yarn bought for a project in the above scenario ends up in the stash because the pattern didn't work out, or for one reason or another the project got frogged.
I don't really know what I want to do with my stash yarn. Chances are it'll just sit right where it is until I need to do this ritual of digging through it only to find what I want isn't there.
So here's my question: What do you do with your stash yarn? Do you buy yarn in anticipation of finding the "right" pattern? Do you like "The Matching Game"? Or are you someone who likes to mix it up and work freeform projects? I'm curious how much yarn is in your stash, and what causes you to buy yarn or fiber when you have plenty at home. Waiting. In your stash.