Thursday, August 10, 2006

Stash busting

From my wanderings in the online knitting world, I gather that many, many knitters have multiple "WIP"s, or works-in-progress. When I started knitting, I was bound and determined not to start anything new until I had finished the thing I was working on. In fact, I even swore I would not buy yarn for any project until I had finished the one I had "on the needles."

You can imagine how long that lasted.

I used to be a sewer (as in one who sews, not a drainage pit). I have stashes of fabric in a two different closets, fabric I will never get to in a million years. Now I have yarn to match. It's a sickness, this need to hoard.

I am proud, though: two of my last three FOs came from yarn in my stash. I feel particularly proud because when I purchased these two yarns, I did not have the projects they eventually became in mind. I consider this a true stash-busting achievement.

Never mind that in the course of knitting these two projects I bought enough yarn for three more. We must accentuate the positive.

Right now I have three things I am knitting:

1) a hat for my boyfriend (the first gift I ever gave him, when we had been dating a mere six weeks, was a hat I had knitted. I am starting a small tradition). I am knitting this from yarn I bought for the purpose.

2) mittens, also from purpose-bought yarn.

3) a Somewhat Cowl sweater (pattern from Knit and Tonic) in yarn I bought on a whim, with no project in mind. A true stash-buster.

Maybe I should try a new resolution: I must always have one true stash-buster on the needles. Something I am knitting from a yarn that has been in my stash for long enough that I have lost interest in the project I bought it for. If I bought it with no project in mind, even better.

It's not that I don't have ideas: right now I am obsessed with an idea I have for a dress, using a silk yarn in my stash, bought for no reason but that I loved it. But a dress is an enormous amount of knitting, and I have not yet dived fully into designing, and so I am intimidated by the project. Maybe by the time I get through that Somewhat Cowl, I'll have built up the courage.

Or I will have moved on to the next idea. I always have more ideas than I have time to knit. Which is how the stash began in the first place.

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