I went through my stash the other night and was amazed at how much wool I had packed away in various corners of the house- which was good because it means the other half doesn't know the half of it! No, actually it wasn't too bad. I knew all the whens, wheres and whys I had certain stuff and although it means I have plenty of projects to keep me going and no excuse for buying any more wool in the foreseeable future it did reassure me that actually very little of my stash is expensive wool. About 70% of what I have is stuff that was bought in charity shops- either by myself when I first started out or by relatives since then. I had a fantastically geeky time lying it all out on the lounge floor and arranging it. The results are:
I have one small box for little diddy balls of wool that I use for scrap, sewing up or toy making, or at a pinch for fixing things.
I have a medium sized box which holds two 'Make your own kits'- one for Winnie the Pooh and one for Tigger. I have every intention of finishing these this year although I have lost the instructions for knitting pooh which might slow me down a bit.
I have one large box of wool that contains odd balls of fun colours that I have used for various projects in the past or larger quantities of good quality wool from charity shops. These are mostly 100g balls that are still largely intact and can be used for a variety of projects. There is a nice selection of soft greys and things and is my fall back stash for smaller projects, toys, handbags- that kind of thing. It's not the most used part of the stash so I had a bit of a prune and parted with a few balls of wool. I have to say that I was loathe to give anything away as it might be useful at some point in the future but at the end of the day I just had to admit that I have lots of knitting to do at the moment anyway and to just let it go....sniff.
The main bulk of my 'to be knitted' wool is in a big wicker basket. This contains all the wool that I keep meaning to make things out of. Most of it is not stuff that I have bought myself but things that my well meaning mother has given me. For instance- it contains 20 balls of eyelash yarn (which I would NEVER have purchased myself) that my mum gave me. I do have plans for it- some of it will go to making cushions for my bed BUT it's not stuff that I can get wildly excited about and I didn't pick it out myself so I keep forgetting to do something with it and then it hangs around taking up room. I have promised myself however that I will not buy any more wool until I have made a bit of a dent in my stash. Its not because I feel that stash reduction measures are needed but because I have all these plans that never get completed otherwise. And then the next time I see the wool I just feel guilty about not ever seeing something through to completion. It does mean that I am going to have to do a bunch of projects that I am less than excited about but I'm sure that if I put my mind to it I can find some way of jazzing things up a bit.
Finally, the last place that I keep wool is in a basket in the lounge. This contains a box with all the most expensive balls of wool in it which are precious and small in number. It also has a few balls of wool for things in progress or the next thing to be knitted so it's where the sock wool ends up. I have a nice pile of kidsilk haze in this basket and a few balls of Louisa Harding, Debbie Bliss and even one of Noro wool. I just take them out every now and again and give them a little squeeze.
It also contains my needle box which takes up a good proportion of the room so it looks more full than it actually is.
So that's it. All fully justifiable. I have a small Blackwells bag full of wool that I'm going to get rid of either by finding someone at my knitting group that wants it, putting it in the knitting groups general help-yourself-box or donating it to a charity shop (last option as I don't believe that they look after it well enough to deserve having it). I do have a scary number of projects on needles however so am really going to have to be good and finish a few of those off. I think I might have bitten off more than I can chew in that respect...