Wednesday, 11 September 2013

Yarn diet

September has suddenly fluttered in and I'm quite happy about that.  I love summer but around this time of year I get tired of being sweaty all of the time and I get excited to start wearing my scarves again.

I finished knitting Vulpix for the Enabler.  I have a terrible photo below just to prove that it's off the needles, but I wouldn't actually say that it is done.

It needs some serious blocking, for two reasons.  One is that I calculated I didn't have enough yarn (or, at least not enough yarn to risk it) to do the full garter stitch edging as written, so the bottom edge is missing four rows of garter stitch that would undoubtedly help it keep from curling up so much.  The second reason is that whenever a knitted item has more than one yarn (fair isle, intarsia, stripes, etc), the two strands sometimes jostle a bit at the points where they are being switched back and forth.  This shawl (yeah, it's a shawl, let's not call it a triangle scarf to try to make it sound more manly) is no exception.  It has an intarsia section with slipped stitches, and multiple stripes with short rows.  We're talking major jostling here.  It needs a good long soak so that the two strands can work out their differences.  Like two dudes sharing a steam room after a wrestling match.  They don't dislike each other, but they have to let the tension go.  They are frenemies.

I will post pictures of the blocked Vulpix once it is, well, blocked.  I may also post pictures of dudes sharing a steam room.  No promises though...  perhaps the mental image is enough.

So.  It turns out that while on vacation, I bought a lot of yarn.  I did post a picture of the haul at the end of the last post, but I wanted to take some time to talk a little bit about a couple of the acquisitions in particular.  Namely, these beauties:

That would be Artyarns Silk Rhapsody Glitter Light (2316) on the left, and Handmaiden Lace Silk (smoke) on the right.  I'm not posting links.  If you want to get a rough idea of specs and how much these cost you can look it up yourself, but I'm not doing the work for you.  Let's just say that when I bought the lace silk, it was the most I'd ever spent on a single skein of yarn... and then I bought two of them because there were only two in the shop and I kept thinking "what if I need two of them??"

Then I saw the teal glitter yarn in a different store and picked it up and gasped at the price because I'd never seen yarn that was that expensive before... and then gasped at how beautiful it was up close and how amazing it felt and quickly grabbed the only other skein of it because I knew I couldn't leave without it and because I kept thinking "what if I need two of them??"

In both cases, the shopkeeper admired my choice and said "What are you going to make with them?"  And in both cases I said that I didn't know but for the moment I was content to have them sit in my yarn cabinet and look gorgeous.  Then they would nod knowingly and I would go on my merry way feeling giddy.

And now, they sit in my yarn cabinet, on display with all of the other gorgeous yarn, and it turns out that I have a great deal of gorgeous yarn.  The skeins pictured above do outshine the other yarn to some degree, however that's largely because they are actually very shiny.  What I realized after putting away the entire haul, was that I am acquiring beautiful yarn at a much faster rate than I am able to knit it, and also that it would be a shame to let all of this amazing yarn go un-knit.

Thus, I am going on a yarn diet.  It's not going to be a zero acquisition diet, because I have committed to a couple of projects but do not have the appropriate yarn in my stash.  What it will be is a ban on "just because" yarn, and also probably a ban (at least temporarily) on buying yarn for projects for myself.  When I look at my stash, I see a great deal of plans and good intentions.  More than enough to keep me busily knitting for a year (or longer), so my goal is to not buy any frivolous yarn until September next year.  I'm hoping this will help a little with stash reduction and, let's be honest, the bank account.

If it gets tough, I'll just pull out the above skeins and hold them for awhile.  They're still making me giddy.

P.S. Fibre doesn't count.


  1. Good luck with your yarn diet. I've been contemplating one...but cannot commit to it yet! Plus I don't feel I have the type of stash where I can randomly choose a project and have what I need on hand.

    I also got yarn on a trip this is a Fleece Maiden that was dyed specifically for the store. The lady at the store ensured me I only needed one because I had mild panic at not buying all of them but I made sure like 5 times I could call them and buy more if I needed to! So i get it why you had to buy 2 of each! I still wish I did.

    1. Thanks! Right now I feel like I'll manage it but I'm only... two days in. It'll probably get rough. And my stash isn't large enough to do anything I want either, but that's ok! I've totally had single skein regret before which is why I was trying to avoid it this time... but one skein of almost any yarn is usually enough to do something with!