A little yarn….

Well, quite a lot actually.
But frustratingly, never quite the right type, colour, amount….

My yarn stash has got a little out of hand. I keep picking up bits I see in charity shops, ‘just in case’ and essentially because I can’t resist, and it has all ended up in about 5 bags, shoved down the side of the sofa, and taking over the study.
I decided to tackle it head on, but halfway through I was starting to regret it…

yarn stash01Strangely enough, neither the ‘helpful’ toddler or the ‘helpful’ cat proved to be especially helpful.

But I did manage to unearth some things I had completely forgotten about:

This sweet crocheted trim-I might try turning it into a collar/sewing it onto a boring plain top?

This sweet crocheted trim-I might try turning it into a collar/sewing it onto a boring plain top?

Look at this yarn! And the very old, very French looking labels. I genuinely have NO idea where this has come from, or how it got in my stash, but I love it!

Look at this yarn! And the very old, very French looking labels. I genuinely have NO idea where this has come from, or how it got in my stash, but I love it!

This bag of embroidery cotton (I think). No idea why I bought it, or what to do with it (other than embroidery, obviously..)

This bag of embroidery cotton (I think). No idea why I bought it, or what to do with it (other than embroidery, obviously..)

Some of the t-shirt yarn I made last year. I would still like to make something with it, but white is such a rubbish looking colour, and I think it will just end up looking very grey and grubby. Maybe I should dye it?

Some of the t-shirt yarn I made last year. I would still like to make something with it, but white is such a rubbish looking colour, and I think it will just end up looking very grey and grubby. Maybe I should dye it?

I even had a lightbulb moment and remembered seeing something about wrapping small bits of yarn around pegs to keep it all tidy, so that is what I did!

yarn stash04

LOVING this idea-they look so cute!

It is now looking much tidier and more manageable, although I can still guarantee that I will have ‘no yarn’ when I want to start my next project (I think it is like staring at a full wardrobe and declaring you have “nothing to wear” when you are about to go out)

yarn stash07

And I have a nice pile of  “too pointlessly small to use for anything at all” wool, to make some firelighters with:

yarn stash06

But I also have a pile of “pointlessly short (I think it’s from a bunch of cross-stitch stuff?) but still too long to not feel bad about throwing out” yarn. Any ideas? I may have to google “things to make with pointlessly short bits of yarn”, or at least do a Pinterest search!

yarn stash08

And before I sign off, I found these, that I think somebody must have given me with some yarn-they are half finished (or started, depending on your point of view) cross stitch thingys-I quite like the slightly retro colours and patterns, but have neither the skill or time to do anything with them. If anyone wants them-give me a shout, and I will post them on-seems such a shame for them to go to waste.

yarn stash11

Now I just need to pick a project and actually start making something.
And maybe, even, finish it too!

Comments

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notimeforironing - 05/01/2014

Could you use the short bits to put into something like a bird feeder cage thing for birds to collect to make their nests with? Does my English make any sense?!!? :-)

Jen - 05/01/2014

It does, and it’s a great idea-I have seen something like that done before. Need to get some bells fitted to our cat’s collars before encouraging the birds in-I meant to get them one each for Christmas, but forgot!

notsogranny - 05/01/2014

My advice is find some yarn you’d like to use with a rough idea of which wardrobe gap youd like it to fill then match it to a pattern using the Ravelry database.
This works better for stash busting than if you start by finding patterns because then none of the yarn will seem quite right.

Jen - 05/01/2014

That is a fabulous idea-thankyou so much!

painterswife - 05/01/2014

Love the pegs and yarn idea – will be passing that one on. Out of the suggestions for the scraps so far I like the bird nest materials idea – I think that is a really sweet thing to do – and it would make very colourful nests in your neighbourhood! If you know someone who does free motion machine embroidery (or if you have a sewing machine and want to have a go yourself) some beautiful art could be made from the scraps.

Jen - 05/01/2014

Do you machine the scraps onto fabric?

painterswife - 05/01/2014

yes – in a kind of free form way or you can make a picture out of it – works well for abstracty and landscapey things.

Jen - 06/01/2014

Crikey-that sounds beyond the realms of my capabilities, but maybe something to aim for in 2014!

painterswife - 06/01/2014

go for it!

KathrynH - 05/01/2014

Have just found your post on making firelighters which has inspired me to make some of our own – esp as we have lots of candle stubs left over from Xmas and I’m in a tidying-up-from-Christmas mood. Thank you.

Jen - 05/01/2014

No problem!

lizlovingandlearning - 05/01/2014

Great selection of ideas – thanks.
Embroidery thread is perfect for friendship bracelets which kids love making (so do many adults).
Shortish threads are good for mending, especially darning. Much easier and quicker to sew up holes with different colours than trying to make it invisible. Unless it’s special clothing it really doesn’t matter (but then I’m no clotheshorse ;)
If nobody else wants the cross stitch stuff I’ll relieve you of it. Happy to cover basic postage. But maybe somebody would buy it from you ( I can’t justify that just now!)

Jen - 05/01/2014

Thanks for these ideas Liz. I LOVE a bit of visible mending, so will be having a go!
If you e-mail me your address (jen_mmdamy@yahoo.co.uk), I’ll pop the bits in the post for you :)

Zoe @ecothrifty - 05/01/2014

You could use the short, but not short enough to chuck out yarn to tie around gifts in place of ribbon…Might look good tied into a bow on the neck of a glass jar…

Jen - 05/01/2014

Great idea Zoe, thank you!

knittymummy - 05/01/2014

Friendship bracelets? They’d make good presents for tweenagers (or better still make them a friendship bracelet making kit)

Jen - 06/01/2014

Yes, good idea. Will do some research-thankyou!

Kate's Country Skill - 06/01/2014

For the t-shirt yarn, you could crochet it up quickly into squares to use as dishcloths or pot holders, depending on how dense you make them?

Jen - 06/01/2014

Loving the dishcloth idea-why didn’t I think of that?! Thankyou :)

Kate's Country Skill - 06/01/2014

You’re welcome! I keep planning to make t-shirt yarn and this was one of the obvious applications (along with crochet rag-rug, if I had *masses*!).

Jen - 07/01/2014

I think charity shops sometimes have ‘rag bags’ of stuff that can’t be sold-might be worth asking?

smallholderwannabe - 07/01/2014

I have a little bag into which I put all the little lengths of yarn that are about 4 inches and over. Then I tie them together (flat reef knots) and crochet a blanket for the cat. It is one of those free exercises when you want to make something and haven’t got the right yarn in the stash and don’t want to buy anything. By the time a couple of friends give me their ends, there is a free blanket every couple of years. And the cat doesn’t seem to mind the knots or the wild colours…

Yes, I know, my husband tells me I’m sad too – but I love making something out of nothing : )

Jen - 07/01/2014

I LOVE this idea-not sad at all! In fact, INGENIOUS :)

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