Tuesday 3 January 2017

Operation Stash Organise, Christmas 2016

aka "Operation Make The Spare Room Presentable".

The poor old spare room is crammed with:
  • All spare bedding - blankets, pillows, sleeping bags etc - plus big pieces of foam that I use for blocking.
  • Leftover boxes of stuff from when we redid the kitchen. Eight years ago.
  • Remaindered craft supplies from when I used to do other crafts.
  • Clothes I don't wear anymore but don't want to get rid of.
  • Knick knacks I have bought on holiday and don't have a place for (the spare room is where I unpack).
  • Board games. 
  • All knitting books and magazines.
  • And, of course, yarn.
For guests, I think it must be quite a scary place to sleep. There's a towering shelf against the bed and precariously-stacked hat boxes of yarn, and nowhere really to put anything down. 

I tidied it up a bit ready for Mother Hand's visit; I had, earlier this year, been through the boxes of stuff she had been secreting in her loft since I moved out at the age of 17, of whose existence I was unaware. That cleared out a lot of stuff, but there were a few leftover bits I couldn't bear to part with so I had to find places for those as well. A lot of stuff went back into the manky plastic chest of drawers I had almost entirely cleared out.

As an aside here, the cat helped a bit in my endeavour by spotting the one photograph in amongst the stuff on the bed that I had put aside to keep, and vomiting right into the middle of it. Alas, that picture of me with my Guide Captain on the night I was awarded my Baden Powell is consigned to distant memory. 

So anyway, here was the stack of stuff after it had been tidied (I know):

This is just clothes and yarn, really. It took me two days, done a little at a time, but here is the resulting stack:

For a true comparison, I should put back the boxes of clothes but I am hoping to get rid of most of that, too, so I have left them down for now.

The great news is that I have managed to completely empty the enormous clear plastic box of yarn, plus the several bagsful that were balanced precariously on top of the mountain. As I resolved in 2016, all my yarn now fits into the hidey hole (which is only half as big as it looks, on account of sitting on the slant of the stairs) and the hat boxes. Also, one of those hatboxes just holds leftover yarn from projects I have previously knitted and delinquent WIPs, so that's not too bad. It basically all fits.

Well, ALMOST. Of course, only almost. I have not put away the Moonlight gradient kit I bought at last Wonderwool; I bagged up two carrier bags for swaps and donating; the enormous stash of Rowan Herring Tweed is still being wound by my heroic in laws; and I haven't counted any of the yarn downstairs. While I'd like to think this isn't a massive amount, I know that I have at least a bagful stuffed behind my chair that I'm trying to ignore.

But, anyway, progress. I was very strict with myself and made sure everything put away here was listed on Ravelry. Even the Cascade. This has had the depressing impact of increasing my stash by 6500m but I keep reminding myself that it was already there, I was just pretending it wasn't.

So. The challenge is going to be to keep it like this. For a while, I think my knitting choices are going to need to be informed by what is taking up the most space, rather than what I want to knit the most.

Full, brutal disclosure: my stash stands, according to Ravelry, at:
173 items (29 of which are buttons)
102,895m of yarn (ouch)

Realistically, at the rate I knit, this little lot would keep me going for about 15 years. I'd be quite bored by the end, but still. I might have reached capacity.
To try to keep myself accountable, I will update my stash at some point with the rest of the yarn I own. By the end of the year I would like to have it back into 5 figures. 

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