I love to crochet and I love to shop.

These two enjoyments over the years have led me to collect dozens of skeins of yarn of various colors, weights and textures. The problem is that for most yarns in my house, I have only one or two of each type.

One contributor to this collection is that for some time I was buying only one or two skeins of any color. That was before I realized that a lot of yarn is needed for most projects of any substance.

Worse,  sometimes I would buy yarn because I liked it but with no idea of when or how it would be used.

The last time I gathered all my yarn in one place the collection took up all of my full-length couch and was piled higher than the arm rests. In other words, I have more yarn than I could crochet in a year if I worked hard at it every day.

For each type of yarn, I usually have enough for small projects such as gloves, hats, scarves, small clutch bags, baby things, and a couple dozen afghan squares (a lot less than what would be needed to comprise a full-size afghan), but not enough for a project of any substance or for anything that requires a thin yarn.

I tend to gather the chunkier/bulkier yarns because, for a long time, I valued speed/quantity of completing projects over quality — at least to some extent. You see, the thinner the yarn, the less space each stitch takes and the more stitches required to take up the diameter or length needed.

Now, as part of home/life project declutter, I am debating what to do with my yarn collection. My sister has offered to take some of it off my hands and there are some yarns I still have plans to use.

I believe the wise thing to do would be to give away my yarns through freecycle or donate it to a thrift store, and that will most likely be my decision.

I think I will better be able to enjoy the yarn I have, find the yarn I need when I have a reduced collection and be happier when my yarn isn’t taking up a fourth of my living room like a giant rainbow hairball.

It may also be wise to have a plan to prevent such a collection from accumulating again.

Once I get rid of the majority of my yarn, I will only buy yarn when I know exactly how much I need and what it will be used for. In addition, I will give away or toss whatever yarn of my new purchases that I do not use to complete the project.

Finally, I will limit my number of ongoing crochet projects to six — I can think of three that are currently unfinished.

Do you have any suggestions, thoughts on what I might do here both to deal with what I have and rules for going forward?

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Last night I was walking in Takoma Park when I came across a woman sitting on her front porch knitting a stuffed Dalek toy out of gold thread.

The geek in me giggled in glee.

I don’t knit. I crochet.  So today I decided to look for some Doctor Who-related crochet patterns.

I’ll be sure to post pictures of what I make. Here is what I’ve found. (more…)