Monday, June 30, 2014


I’ve mentioned before that I like to watch the Hoarders type programs on TV, to get motivated to clean up my clutter around the house. If you’ve ever seen any of them, you know that one of the common hoarder arguments for keeping umpteen “what’s-its”, is that “someone might need it someday”.

Anyone with a yarn stash or fabric stash probably understands this completely. “Perhaps I don’t adore this yarn, but someday I might need to make something that calls for it.” “I picked this yarn up at a garage sale in a bag with some good stuff, so I’ll keep it just in case.” Those are familiar excuses for hanging on to yarn or fabric that we aren’t truly in love with. And the psychologists on the hoarder programs love to counter with “you need to realize that SOMEDAY is NEVER going to come”.

And today my answer to that it – POPPYCOCK!

Last week, a neighbor lady called up and asked if I could help her with a knitting project. She brought over a beautiful piece of knitted lace that her daughter, who passed away almost two years ago, had left unfinished. It was meant to be a christening gown, and the pattern was there, but no more yarn to make the bodice.

I was sure that I could finish the project for her, and since the bodice was mostly stockinette, and the lace portion was done, any variation between my knitting and her knitting would be unnoticeable. The live stitches were in a tangle though, as though the needles had been pulled out and then put back in. Some stitches were dropped, others were split.

I spent part of the evening liberating those stitches, carefully undoing the knitting until I got back to a place where all the stitches were present and accounted for, and then I studied the pattern to see exactly where I was and what came next. Then, I studied my stash database, and went hunting for Bin #61.

Yes, that’s right 61, and fortunately I have room to store all those bins, and no, 61 is not the end of the inventory. It’s a work in progress.

Bin #61 holds mostly acrylic baby yarns, of various brands, colors, and ages. Everything from current day yarns to 40 year old dime store yarn, gleaned mostly from thrift stores and rummage sales. And lo and behold, here were some skeins of – you guessed it – Red Heart Baby Yarn – that were a perfect match to the yarn in the gown. I picked one, joined it, knit a few rounds, and checked – you could not tell the difference at all!

Do you have any idea how satisfying that felt? To come up with the perfect yarn match to fulfill this special request? To be able to honor this kindred knitter’s spirit? It’s very special indeed , and if that doesn’t justify the need for stashes, big and small, I don’t know what does!

Here’s a photo of Peggy’s christening gown, where she left off. I’m ready to start working the bodice. Look at all that lovely lace. It would have been a terrible shame to waste all that good knitting for want of some acrylic baby yarn. Justified, indeed!

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