Stash organization

April 28, 2014

 I think it's the spring fever but lately I've been putting a lot more effort in the organisation of my stash, both the way in which I store them as in inventorying what I have. I've been going trough the whole of my stash to reorganise it as well as making an inventory of what I have.

 Knitters organise their stash in various ways. Either by weight, by projects, by quantities (small projects or big), by brand, or by colour. I know some knitter have beautiful displays of their stash in bookcases in their study, or in bowls on the table of the living room, whereas other knitters choose practical storage over pleasing eyes. I wish I fell in the 'beautiful displays'-category, truthfully I don't. At the moment it just isn't practical. The Treehouse is known for many things, but not for large spaces. Furthermore, my cats have learned to leave my WIPs alone, having  my stash openly displayed would prove to much temptation for them. Heaven forbid yarn damage by cats, sunlight or moths as consequence of having the stash openly displayed.

I store my yarn, less fashionably, in plastic bins. With bags of lavender or pieces of cederwood thrown in between it. I love all animals, but I love moths the best when they stay far away. I have them sorter by project. This works the best for me, as tend to do a lot of colourwork projects and in this way I have them grouped nicely together. Most of the yarn in my stash is sweater quantity because that is what I knit the most. I'm fairly loyal to my project plans and yarn brands that I like.
All my stash has a conceived purpose. If my taste changes I can re-purpose it easily because since it's project based, I tend to have project quantities instead of lost of different small skeins that don't match with other skeins.

 I have also been making more of an effort, because I was reorganizing my stash anyway, to photograph my stash and note the details of each of the yarns (how much I have, what project I plan to use it for etc). This is especially helpful for myself because knowing what I have and want to make helps me plan my projects better, but I'm slowly adding it to Ravelry as well. I found myself using the stash function a lot more , mostly to look up yarn and colour details from other people's stashes(you know...just in case I want to expand my stash), so I know putting up yarn photo's and information can be useful for other knitters as well as for my own organisation. I try to capture as much detail in the pictures as possible: what brand and what thickness is the yarn, what texture is it. That's why I photograph the yarn with the etiquette still on.

How do you store your yarn? Do you use Ravelry to keep track of your yarn? Let me know!



Toatie Hottie

April 21, 2014

Remember my care-package from a couple of weeks ago? I didn't get around to post the result!

Pattern: Toatie Hottie
Designer: Kate Davies
Yarn: Jamieson & Smith Shetland Heritage
Soundtrack: Atlantic City by Bruce Springsteen

This project makes me gleefully happy. The colourwork was great fun to knit, and it works up incredibility fast. I think it took me about two or three days to finish. It's not something I planned on making a couple of months ago, but sometimes it's good to change plans and make something just for the sheer fun of it. In short, this was exactly what I needed!

This yarn needs some more attention: It is Jamieson & Smith Shetland Heritage yarn as provided by Kate Davies in the kit. The Heritage yarn was developed recently in a collaboration between Jamieson and Smith and the Shetland museum. They wanted to recreate the yarn that was historically used in Shetland to make garments and used garments found in the museums archive as a guide.

The Heritage yarn is very different from the 2ply jumper weight, which is the Jamieson & Smith flagship yarn. It's much softer, and smoother than the 2ply jumper.The Heritage is also slightly thinner than the jumper weight, probably due to its smoother nature. The fact that it's a worsted spun instead of woollen spun also sets it apart and probably accounts for most of the differences. Though this was only a small project, I'm looking forward to make a sweater with this yarn, the softness must make it a real pleasure to wear.

This pattern has also taught me the Turkish cast-on. It a lovely technique, a bit fiddly at first but real magic once you get the hang of it.

I hope you had a lovely Easter, however you spend it.
Thanks for reading,



Swish & Flick: the fanfiction

April 10, 2014

If I would have been able to go to Hogwarts, I know for sure that Hermione and  I would have been great friends. I mean, I'm pretty sure my parents are muggles, just like hers. We also both love cats. Whereas other wizzards let their owls, toads and rats run amok, Hermione owns a cat. Remember SPEW, the Society for the Promotion of Elfish Welfare? I'm down with that. End the oppression! Together, Hermione and I could have staged some serious direct action against institutionalized elf-hatred.

Being grounded for that wouldn't be a problem. Both she and I could spend hours reading and talking about books. I would teach her all about gnomes, and we would play hide and seek with them in my treehouse (which would have to be magically transported to hogwarts in a blue box upon my invitation there). And, of course, we would swap knitting patterns for elf-hats. Perhaps Dumbledore could join to. Also I think that my knitting would really benefit from befriending someone who knows how to handle a timeturner! 

Oh's such a shame you didn't send me that Hogwarts letter, but at least I can still play-pretend in my Hermione cardigan.

Name: Swish & Flick
Designer: Megan Murray
Song: What else?
Yarn: Drops Lima

The fit for this pattern runs on the large size. I read that some people had had issues with the fit on ravelry and therefore I already went down a size, from what I normally would knit, but the fit is still a bit baggy. The yoke pattern continues a bit further then the it does in the film version of the cardigan, but I do not mind that to much. If I were to do it again I would go down another size, shorten the stranded yoke and definitely make the sleeves slimmer. I didn't steek the buttonholes, but knitted them in instead, as I think that steeked buttonholes are just too much of a fuss. The result is a very warm and comfy cardigan, just in time for...

oh..... that spring I see on the horizon?



Work in progress: care-package

April 04, 2014

Phew, my exams are over. Even though they lasted two weeks, it feels as if I've had a study-marathon of two months. To illustrate how bad it got, my friends caught me to referring to an exam that happened two days before as 'last week'.  So, thankfully, there's the care-package.

This is Kate Davies' Toatie Hottie, a hot water bottle with a knitted cosy for protection. I got it as a kit a while ago, and the J&S Heritage yarn that comes with the kit is a real treat to knit with, it's super soft. Luckily, the hot water bottle itself was included in the kit as well, so this comfort knit can be turned into an item of comfort as soon as the last stitch is cast off.

Though it feels weird not knitting on a big project now (Hermoine cardigan is finished, yay!), I'm quite satisfied for the moment.


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