Sunday, November 16, 2008

Well, Lookee What I Found!!

First of all, let me congratulate Daniele, because she's the winner of my first comment bribe giveaway. That's nice, because she's been a faithful commenter for a long time. (Of course, that means she didn't need a bribe, but let's call it a reward or something.) I should mention that the winner was chosen by the scientific method of taking five playing cards, one for each commenter, shuffling, drawing, and awarding the bribe prize to the comment number that corresponded with the number on the card. Obviously this works until you have more than 13 comments, but I'll not worry about that just yet. So thanks to all who commented, and stay tuned. I've been cleaning up the stash, so there will be more bribes giveaways in the future.

So, the stash cleaning. Wow. The original plan was not only to inventory, photograph, and list The Stash on Ravelry, but also to get The Room organized and cleaned up enough to actually walk through, instead of creeping sideways through the narrow path to my computer chair. After much moving, shifting, prying open, and dumping of boxes, the inventory commenced. I say again, WOW. I made a shocking discovery:

Eh, so what? you say. Look at this picture:

This is Missy's lace shawl--the one I mentioned in the last post that we started together because she found this faaaabulous lace yarn at Woolgathering. Compare the photos. Yep, it's the same yarn. And even though I stood there at the booth and helped her pick it out, I had absolutely NO recollection that I had bought exactly the same yarn from exactly the same booth at exactly the same fiber fest the year before! What's even funnier is that she was with me last year too, and she doesn't remember it! Scary, huh?

But wait, there's more. See this?

This is a shawl I started for the Spindlicity handspun shawl contest a while back.  (Wow, I didn't realize just how "a while back" that was until I retrieved the link!)  I loved that roving so much, and spent so much time working with it, both spinning on a drop spindle and knitting it. You'd think I would recognize it instantly if I ever saw it again. Nope. Look what I found in a box on the bottom shelf behind the loom:

Again, exactly the same roving, probably bought from exactly the same vendor. The details of both purchases are a blur, but really. Am I going to have to start carrying smidgins of wool everywhere I go so I don't make multiple purchases? Oh well, at least I'm consistent in my tastes!

That shawl never got finished because I started knitting it before I finished spinning the yarn. As I spun, the yarn got finer and finer, ending up like this: 
(Love that classy yarn bobbin!) Unfortunately, the difference was obvious in the shawl, and I pulled it off the needles because I knew it wasn't going to work out. Here are the detail pictures--you can clearly see how the yarn got progressively finer.  The center starting point:

About a billion million hundred rounds later:

I was terribly disappointed, because I so wanted to win the scholarship to SOAR, but I couldn't bring myself to finish it. I put it away until I could stand to look at it long enough to frog back to where the yarn started becoming a little more consistent, and of course, I forgot about it. I've got so much of that roving now, I could spin and knit 40 shawls with that weight of yarn!

So far those have been the worst discoveries in the Stash Inventory. I am going to get tough, and get rid of some of the leftover yarns I have rattling around. Somebody somewhere can use them. And to show you just how tough I can be...I THREW AWAY yarn I had spun and plyed on a drop spindle. It was one of those projects that was just not turning out well and I knew it, but I couldn't bear to give up on it. I had spun and plyed so much of this yarn--laceweight again--that I tried to ignore the little voice in my head that was insisting that it was scratchy. Really, really scratchy. It was a mystery roving I got from someone else who was destashing, and yesterday as I fondled the thousands hundreds ten little skeins, I realized that wearing a shawl knit out of this stuff would be like wearing an exquisitely lovely hair shirt. So it went in the trash, roving and all (though I think I spied more of that roving peeking out from under some mohair in a clear box I haven't gotten into yet. Maybe it will make a, well, it could be spun into a thick yarn for...hmm, maybe I could...) Aha! FELT!!

It's been fun (though eye-opening) to go through all my yarn and fiber, but I don't think it will all get posted on Ravelry any time soon. It's just too much! I have been writing down the bare bones information, so I'll probably do a spreadsheet just so I can see what I have and where I've stored it. Pretty much the same idea as Ravelry, but without all the pictures. Which leads me to wonder: how do you manage your stash, if you have one? (If you don't because you're one of those anal compulsive freakish wonderfully disciplined people who only have yarn for the project you are presently working on, I don't want to know about it.) Do the rest of you just toss your purchases on top of the pile, so to speak, or do you post it on Ravelry or use another organizing method? I really do want to know, because besides yarn I have needlepoint, cross-stitch, weaving, and quilting stash and UFOs, and I'd kind of like to keep track of it all. If for no other reason than that I don't need any more purple silk-blend roving!


Daniele said...

I won!! I won!!! YAY!! Thanks Lisa! I can't wait to receive my prize. :)

You are not the first person whose posts I have read that came up with the same fiber/yarn in his/her stash that she just finished buying again. Me? Not so much. I thought about why...

The most prominent reason, I think, is that the whole fiber thing started for me less than six years ago. Plus, since it's only been that long, I don't have as much (I don't think) as most people.

I organize fiber by weight, mostly. Plastic bins for sure. So far, so good. Ask me in a couple of years though... I may be pulling something out going . . . "Where the &*+^&* did this come from?!!" ;) Good luck on the organizing.

The shawls are gorgeous. You should definitely make something out of those lace and sport weights. Love the purples!!

Kelly L. said...

My stash isn't huge, but considering I only live in 1 room, it tends to make the stash look massive. Between yarns, fibers, floor loom, and wheel I barely have enough room for my bed! I would like to organize it, but I have yet to do so. In the meantime, the fibers and yarns stay on a shelf, or in plastic buckets I hide in the closet.