My Yarn in my Stash Must Be Breeding… Like Rabbits!

I’ve been doing a lot of knitting this year—more than in many years—trying to whittle down the Too Much Yarn—So Little Time stash. I’ve been on a trade/donation kick too. Ravelry shows my trades/gifts for the last 12 months at 28 (!). Two people approached me about hats and scarves for the homeless and got more than they bargained for (massive piles of yarn). Mostly vintage mohair and “virgin” wool.

Scheepjes Diamond 2/4
Scheepjes Diamond 2/4

Some yarns are so old, I’ve had a tough time finding the yardage and proper weights. This week I forensically discovered the weight of a Scheepjes Diamond 2/4 because even though the yarn wasn’t on Ravelry, a pattern for it was.

My most recent sale/donation was a gentleman from Chico, CA who is knitting wool socks for donation to a shelter. He didn’t tell me he was a charity knitter until after we agreed on a price so in addition to the skeins he requested, I stuffed a big box full before I sent it off which meant his funds only covered the shipping. And I friended him on Ravelry so that I can send more as I dig through the vast wasteland of my grandmother’s lifetime of knitting leftovers—mostly odd balls of worsted weight, superwash in 300-600 yard lengths. Enough that if I went into Etsy business of knitting hats, mitts and scarves (as I threaten to do), I wouldn’t need to buy yarn for years.

Natural (Undyed) Handspun Alpaca from Warm Valley Orchard
Natural (Undyed) Handspun Alpaca from Warm Valley Orchard

One of the Orcas Island shepherdesses, Maria Nutt of Warm Valley Orchard, suggested I start weaving. This after I told her I’d recently came across 1200 yards of beautiful (undocumented) natural color alpaca I bought from her more than 10 years ago. She even offered to bring by her loom to get me started.

I Found 11 Skeins of This Bucilla Yarn in an Unopened Box
I Found 11 Skeins of This Bucilla Yarn in an Unopened Box

And just when I think I’ve seen all of my collection and I’m sure I’ve posted it on all Ravelry, suddenly more appears. Two weeks ago I found in box that hasn’t been opened for three house moves which contained Eleven 100 gram skeins of pale yellow—2500 yards of it. How the heck did I miss it when I spent weeks photographing and cataloguing “everything” I owned last Fall?

So I’ve come to this conclusion—they must be breeding away—making new little skeins; growing them like nodes on the side of an epiphyte.

Partly this is because people also give me yarn. One friend I made a mock turtleneck for (nearly identical to this one by Karen Templer) gave me a small box of yarn from her grandmother. “She’ll know what to do with it”, her grandmother said. But I didn’t. I left it in that little white box for four house moves—never opening it after that afternoon tea with my friend–until now.

Unopened box of Angora
Unopened box of Angora

Last week, after years *blush* of it sitting as a box in a box, did I take a look at the magic inside. 17 colors—most shades of pink and purple—of worsted weight angora. They are mostly dribs and drabs—some as small as 30 inches the longest is a 99 yards of fuchsia, but I think they might provide “fuzzy” interest paired with a masculine color like burgundy or navy in a Sally Melville’s stashbusting Topher’s Pullover.

Dribs and Drabs of Angora
Dribs and Drabs of Angora
Four Shades of Pink
Four Shades of Pink
Three Shades of Purple
Three Shades of Purple
Baby Blue Angora
Baby Blue Angora
Pale Yellow
Pale Yellow
One of the Green Angora
One of the Green Angora
Fuschia
Fuschia
Unopened Kit for a Square Dance Sweater
Unopened Kit for a Square Dance Sweater

Another box I dredged out this weekend was a kit I’d tried to give it away without opening it. After my discovery of the angora, I got curious and opened it up. Wow! Another huge surprise. Inside a cheesy looking square dance sweater kit (my gramps and gram used to cut a rug to the caller at least once a week) was the most beautiful ivory colored Scheepjes wool with matching 7 matching colors for the little people dancing around the hem. And let’s not forget the cowhead buttons! Yee Haw!

Cattle Head Buttons!!
Cattle Head Buttons!!

I’m hoping that they measured on the generous side, because this is coming off the donate pile and going onto the looking for a good worsted weight pattern—maybe I’ll even mix them it into the Topher pullover and use the ivory for another sweater—possibly something from Madder 2 which I’ve been angling to dig into now that my Home and Away, George Hancock Cardigan, is done.

Directions for the Kit
Directions for the Kit

Sometimes my stash makes me feel tired just looking at it. Have any of you inherited or been given yarn, supplies, cloth and/or other items and wondered what to do with it?

Ivory Wool--the Main Color
Ivory Wool–the Main Color
Handful of the Wooly Colors
Handful of the Wooly Colors
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