Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Alpaca in Cardboard

Well. So. As you’re probably aware, when you’re getting ready to sell your house one of the first things your realtor will tell you is that you need to declutter - a word which in my case is pronounced, “Hot holy carp, woman, get some of this yarn out of here – your house looks like it fell on a yarn store!”

This morning, I started pulling yarn out of the craft closet.

Bags. Boxes. Skeins. The big cones. The wee little balls I can’t bring myself to throw away because there is totally enough for a few pairs of baby booties left. The beautiful. The, uh, well, it was on sale. Superwash. Cotton. Alpaca. Silk. Chenille.

Now, I knew I had a fair bit of yarn in there. I knew that. I knew that, through the last nine years, I have bought a bit more yarn than I have actually used. Especially given my irrational pack-rat habit with the leftovers (which I then seldom use because my color sense is appalling and I will put together the worst possible combinations) (and no, a color wheel doesn’t help me) (no, I’m not colorblind, just color-stupid), well.

It adds up, people.

But, we need to clear it out. We are trying to show the Den at its best, trying to show people what it would look like if it were not inhabited by a band of lunatics who collect things like partial balls of yarn, musical instruments in need of just a little work, books, crayons, buttons and children’s artwork.

I took out the easy stuff this morning. The yarn that was where it is “supposed” to be, in the craft closet. I know there are still rogue balls out there, mercenary skeins that have taken to the low country (under the bed) or are hiding in the Alps (upstairs bedroom closet).

I’d say this is probably about 95% of my stash right here; I left out things that are currently on the needles and one (1) project I’m all hot to start (the Celtic Lattice vest from Cheryl Oberle’s ‘Folk Vests’ book), and a handful of the remnant sock yarn balls to make booties with in my copious free time {ahem}, but all the rest?


Yarn to Storage

Each and every container you see here is stuffed with yarn. And there is one row of boxes you can’t see, beneath those. Plus also another (small) box that didn’t fit there which is riding shotgun.

There are space bags involved.

And brute force and profanity to get some of those boxes closed.


As I was packing it all up, I briefly flirted with the wild notion of putting all some maybe a few of the nicer crap skeins things up on eBay.

But I suspect my lined-out words will tell you how that conversation went with myself. No, it did not go well.

“You know,” I said to myself thoughtfully. “You’ve had these three skeins of gorgeous handspun black alpaca since Noah was a pup and haven’t done anything with it. It’s good stuff. You could probably make some money if you put that (and this, and this, and that, and those, and this) up on eBay and you know that Cash is King right now, what with all the fence-slat-replacing and fixture-fixing-upping and painting and…”

“NO! Nooooooooooooooo! We loves it, my precious, it’s OURS, OURS! Hssssss, my preccccccioooooussssss!”

I scared myself so much I dropped the yarn into the box and backed away quickly. Hoo boy. I had no idea how creepy I can be.

I also began playing a game of ‘wait, not that one.’

Wait – I might need black superwash!
Wait – I wanted to make a shawl out of that!
Wait – what if, well, what if?!

My husband tried to speak reason unto me.

“Honey,” he said, reasonably. “It’s not like it’s going away forever. It’ll be in the storage unit, right up the street. Five minutes. You can get whatever you need, any time. I’ll make sure it stays where you can get to it easily.”

“Wellllllll,” I replied, reluctant to concede the point.

I am not rational when it comes to my yarn. I don’t know when this started, exactly, because I wasn’t always like this. In point of fact, the last time we moved, all the yarn I owned took less than one box.

Things have definitely changed.

And I don’t like to see my yarn going off to the cold, dark storage unit. I know they’re not really alive, but I swear I feel as though I’m putting a (rather large) litter of kittens into boxes to be stored. Poor little things! They don’t deserve this kind of treatment! It is a soulless thing to do, a dark and dismal thing.

But then I thought of something that cheered me right up. As I shared with my husband:

If I do need anything, it’d probably be easier to just go to KnitPicks and order it.

Oddly, he didn’t seem to find this as excellent an idea as I did.

Husbands. Go figure.


froggiemeanie said...

Husbands don't get it. Mine recently told me that all my yarn and books and patterns should be in the basement because I don't use them everyday. I had no good rebuttal prepared in advance (won't make that mistake twice) and so grudgingly took the yarn down there. Cold, dark, alone (the books are staying in the land of light though). It takes all my strength not to lovingly escort each of them into a nest in the corner of my bedroom for me to crouch upon like a she-dragon with fresh hatchlings.

Bev in TN said...

That's what I need...a storage place...where I can take everything that doesn't fit in the closets (80% of the stuff in my house 'cuz closet space wasn't invented when they built this %$#@* house) and THEN I can/could clean this house...thanks for giving me that idea to ponder over. What I really meant to say, and not to alarm you or anything, but have you considered these possibilities regarding storage in an offsite place: 1) excessive heat; 2) humidity/dampness; and 3) moths...yes the M word. I just want to help you keep your stash safe, really :-). PS: My sister told me I live in CHAOS...can't have anyone over syndrome ('cuz of the chaos and all), but I'm sure you've heard of that.

Very Herodotus said...

Or, you could put a nice comfy recliner in the storage shed and go visit your yarn whenever you want to get away from the crazy den. Take a floor lamp with you, a battery-powered radio, and your needles/scissors/whatnot, and you're all set!!

Anonymous said...

As my husband was packing some of his books the other day (yes, we're moving, too), he suggested that I put my knitting needles in there too. Four pairs of 14-inch single-points, sitting calmly in a cylindrical glass vase on the kitchen counter. Not bothering anybody. To pack them in with heavy books about old cars and motorcycles. "Well, you're not using them, are you?" No, but I am LIVING here until we move. Unlike you. Do. Not. Pack. My. Stuff. While. I. Am. Living. Here.

Susan said...

My husband actually had the temerity to say to me, "You have enough yarn." Knitters, I ask you, how much is enough?

Now there's a Zen koan that might actually drive me to meditation.

La Cabeza Grande said...

Heh-heh! I totally understand as my yarn habit grew from a single plastic cube into 3 closets, one of which is my walk-in. I hate to think of what I'd do if I had to move it all.

21stCenturyMom said...

That is a serious addiction you have there. Good thing you are on the 'no buying yarn for a year' diet or whatever it is.

What I really want to know is - why are you selling the den and moving? I know you got totally seduced by the palace but when that didn't work out what spured you on? Just curious. And WHAT ABOUT THE ROSE BUSHES??!!

Amy Lane said...

EEEEk!!! Just the sight of it makes me itch!!! No no no no no no no... ( can go visit your kittens...I mean's only down the street...breathe...)

Rena said...

You sound like me and my books, which are WAY heavier than yarn. I got rid of four boxes of books and it felt like gnawing off my hand. But when they are piled up between me and the bed, something has to be done.