Joyful Patterns – AKA Downsizing Your Library

When my husband and I moved last summer to a place half the size of our previous home, we had a rule, no boxes move unopened. We both had boxes in the garage (mine) and in a storage unit (his), that had not been opened in two or more moves, most from before we moved in together.  

To decide what to keep and what to save, we had to see it all. What followed was a tiring three-month process of narrowing down everything we owned to the things we felt we needed—with a few exceptions. For me the exception was knitting books and supplies.

As I’ve been working on my latest sweater, I’ve been power watching Marie Kondo’s show on Netflix, Tidying Up. In her show, she helps organize everything: clothes, dishes, office supplies, crafts, etc. Regardless of the item, you must touch it and ask, “Does this bring me joy?”

I walked over to my overburdened bookshelves and felt a sense of sadness. Several of my books had never been opened. Most had never been used.

When I looked through them I realized that there was a lot of duplication and some ego involved. Letting them go was a relief. And there was another burst of joy when I removed them from my Ravelry library. I felt like a weight had been lifted!

Marie suggests you thank the items before discarding them and I am truly thankful for the inspiration these books provided–including the knowledge of what books not to buy! I’m also happy to have a foot of space to place pending projects—where the pattern, yarn and needles are ready to go. No more digging them out of storage!

My plan is to take my extra books to my local library or yarn shop. Since Salish Sea Yarn Co opened on the island, there are loads of new knitters on island. So, having some sharable resources can only make that easier for them to pick up their new craft.

Am I brave enough to tackle my stash next? Maybe.