Stash Confessional: Yarn Accountability 2016
Well...for those of you who were following along in 2015, you'll probably know that I failed pretty miserably at the lofty yarn stashing goals I set for myself. And then I just plain stopped keeping track. Much of the purchasing was enabled by Jonas, make no mistake, and I did give away somewhat ridiculous amounts of yarn to various charity groups, so I don't feel entirely bad about myself, but as I'm still a person with limited space and even more limited funding, I've put my foot down about purchasing (not just yarn...everything) in 2016. Between this and setting my goals a bit lower, hopefully 2017 will start with a more happy celebration of my 2016 successes instead of me still feeling like I own way more of everything than I really ought. Don't get me wrong, there's NO WAY AT ALL that I'm getting my stash down to even what I'd consider a reasonable size with just the amount of knitting/gifting I'm able to accomplish in one year, but I want to at least look back at 2016 and see that I didn't take in more than I removed.
I started 2015 with 55,081.4 yards/50308.7 metres of yarn. My goal was to end the year with 25308.7 metres of yarn, which I knew was basically ridiculous, but I also knew I needed to set the bar high if I was going to make it mean anything to myself. I did well the first month and actually donated around 4000 metres of yarn to the charity group at Yarn Harbour in Duluth, but things fell off pretty sharply after that. I did have another round of donating yarn in October when the lovely ladies of the KnerdGirl Knits Podcast were doing a charity drive as part of their year-long Bad Ass Women in STEM Craft Along (they're doing women in arts and humanities this year if you want in on the action. It's really low-key and super fun and features great prizes--some of them by yours truly.) So...how did I do? Well...
Here's where we're starting 2016 in terms of yarn stash. I think I got everything that I bought in 2015 and had not bothered to stash for one reason or another, but I fear I may still be missing some things. If that's the case I will, of course, update accordingly. There are still two Gilmore Girls yarn club skeins outstanding, so those will need to be added, but I don't remember what bases I ordered yet.
Here's where I'm starting the year in terms of yarn stash (yes...it's more than I started with last year despite knitting 11,461 yards into projects (granted a chunk of that was a REALLY LONG Doctor Who scarf), and donating/destashing around 19,000 yards:
Skeins of yarn: 230.67
Yards of yarn: 59,459.6
Metres of yarn: 54,369.6
Grams of yarn: 19, 054
This means my yarn acquisition in 2016 was around 26,000 yards. Which was basically the amount I wanted to get rid of. Yep.
With this year's resolutions being all about not acquiring things, I'm hoping I can make a significant dent. I did well last year with donating yarn, but this year the sale/trade yarn has been pretty pared down (because of all last year's donations), so even if I sold/donated all the things I'm willing to part with, I would only decrease the stash by 69.35 skeins/14,200.8 yards/12985.3 meters/4004 grams (roughly 20% of the total), which is an okay number, but not staggering.
Admittedly, my goal is to knit through all the yarn in my stash that's been there since pre-2014, which isn't really that much yarn if you only count the things that aren't in my trade/sell bin (around 6000 yards/5500 meters). Considering even in my light year of knitting this year due to school I managed 11,000 yds, I feel like this is an obtainable goal. If I also include the trade/sell bin (either by donating--although this is all stuff I like and would be willing to knit, so I'd rather either knit it or sell it--or by knitting it or destashing it) I would have to get rid of a further 8000 yards/7400 meters for a total of 14,000 yards/13,000 meters of destashing in 2016. I fully believe I can make it happen...tge trick will be trying to make sure that preference is given to the older yarns. I'm not going to completely adhere myself to that (if newer yarns need to be knit for a specific reason then why prohibit it?), but I'm going to try to look to those older yarns as I plan out projects and have leeway.
But! Most of all...I need to minimise yarn buying. As I've given myself a total of 12 purchases (of anything deemed non-essential/gift for others by Jonas, who has been appointed acquisitions commissioner) with Jonas setting the total dollar value allotted to each purchase, I think I can curb this stash before it REALLY gets too big for its space. Wish me luck though...Jonas is weak under pressure, now also has a yarn-buying habit, and is a horrible enabler if I use the word cute when talking about how much I like it.