Slow Stashing | A post inspired by Clara Parkes

Hello dear readers,

You may have noticed that the blog has had a little bit of an overhaul. I found the reason I wasn’t posting as much as I had originally planned was that I wasn’t excited by what I was posting. To me, the articles felt forced. And no-one enjoys reading posts from an author who doesn’t enjoy writing them. As a result, I have decided to spend more time researching and posting articles that mean something to me.

As the title suggests, I have been doing a bit of catch up reading with Knitter’s Review, the brainchild of Clara Parkes. I came across a post that really spoke to me and introduced to me that concept of Slow Stashing. You can read that post here. It’s a really simple concept, prune your yarn stash to nurture creativity. Clara first introduced the concept in 2009, as a new years resolution for knitting, encouraging us to be mindful of every skein of yarn we own and only allowing new skeins into your stash that truly inspire you. It is such a simple concept, but an interesting one. We all have those balls or skeins of yarn that we bought on a whim or when we first started knitting that we no longer know what to do with or even want to knit with.

After reading Clara’s post, I was inspired. She suggests sorting your stash into 2 piles, the happy pile and the unhappy pile. As you can guess, the happy pile contains all the skeins that make your heart sing and you want to grab your needles straight away and cast on. The unhappy pile is for all the skeins that you felt compelled to buy, to knit with and now keep, even though they don’t inspire you. To quote the post

In the unhappy pile go all the yarns that immediately cause your spirits to sag. These yarns appealed to your sense of “should”—I should buy this, I should knit something out of this, and, even now, I should keep this. As soon as you find yourself muttering the word “should,” put that yarn in the unhappy pile. Also in the unhappy pile go yarns that, through no fault of their own, carry emotional baggage. Yarns were innocent bystanders to tough times in your life. Yarns that you’ve already tried to use a few times but always ended up frogging. Yarns that you feel you should use even though the spark just isn’t there. Those yarns need to go.” – Resolutions for 2009: Slow Stashing by Clara Parkes

Since it is a holiday weekend here in the United States, I knew that this would be the perfect time to go through my stash. Although my stash of yarn is small compared to most knitters, I was all too aware that there were still skeins in there that fit the unhappy pile criteria. In addition, the September Madison Knitters’ Guild meeting is coming up and they will gladly accept yarn as donations for community knitting projects or the December Sale. I currently store my yarn stash in a basket next my TV, so I can gaze upon it while I sit on the sofa. I emptied it out and proceeded to sort through my yarn. It was liberating. Knowing that the yarn that no longer inspired me, would inspire someone else, or be used for the various community projects organised by the guild.

It has definitely encouraged me to be more mindful of the skeins that I do buy, being aware that I only let skeins into my life that I can simply not do without. I hope that you are similarly inspired to look through your own stash and see what you can donate or sell from your stash and inspire someone else with those skeins, as they once did for you. I’d love to hear your thoughts on this.

Until next time,

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