Crafts are my passion, Cats are my obsession

My crafting adventures, my cats, my dogs, my opinons - I never did keep a diary as a child, but I'm doing it now!

Friday, December 07, 2007

The Diet....

The Problem: Too much yarn, too much computer space, too much paper,too many books.

I buy yarn whenever I find a "Must Make This" pattern. The pattern can come from the 'net, from a library book, or from my pattern stash - I do check that on occassion, as well as add to it...buying new pattern leaflets, the odd book, thrift stores are my friend, etc. So, I end up with the yarn, ready to make something, but no time to start it - or, I start, but then get excited about another project, or I've got multipe WIP's on the go.... So, I end up with a ton of stash.

I see patterns on the 'net, and instead of printing them right away, I save them to a folder on my hard drive. Later, I might see the same pattern, and download it (or try to) again - which tells me that I've got way more than I need, since I can't keep track of what I've already got!!

Sometimes, I *will* recognize a pattern, and not double download. Other times, I can't recall which folder I'd "sorted" it into, and it is easier to just go get it again....

Every so often, I try to clean up the computer, and will print out a whole whack of files - then, I don't have a way to organize or sort them, so I end up with piles of disorganized paper, and if I decided to make something, it is easier to print off a new one.... :(

I can't afford to buy a lot of books - but I *do* hang out at thrift stores and check the books and craft areas for leaflets or books that are a good deal - not to mention, yard sales, library used book sales, etc. I have bought the odd new knitting book.... And some craft magazines....

So - what I end up with, is a ton of stash of the SABLE proportions - Stash Acquisition Beyond Life Expectancy. And that means, both yarn and pattern, and don't forget - I do more than just knit or crochet...there is the cross stitch collection, the quilt collection, the tat collection (although, that one is not very big, since there isn't that much around), etc. etc. etc.....

What I need to do, is go on a pattern diet. Which means - I need to stop downloading every pattern I think I like. I need to stop saving every pattern that catches my eye. I need to stop visiting the craft book areas of the thrift stores. I need to stop browsing the library's collection of craft books.

And I need to weed out the patterns that I've already saved that I know I probably won't ever get to. Now, I know that there is such a thing as inheritance - I'm sure that one or more of the grand kids will appreciate eventually getting things passed down to them.

The Solution: Pattern Diet for 2008.

So, what are the rules? Well, firstly, any and all cat patterns are exempt. So are the KAL's (and CAL's) that I've already signed up for. Which means, groups such as the six sox knitalong group, I'll be getting five or six new sock patterns in 2008, the sockamania group will provide me with 12 new ones, then there are the mystery shawl or stole KAL's - they will get me new patterns, too.... Also exempt is Quiltmaker magazine - which is put aside for me at the local bookstore (along with Cat Fancy magazine)

Basically, instead of going to the 'net first to find a new pattern to make an item, I am going to go through the patterns I already have. I'm also going to go through them regularly anyway, to decide which ones I will truly never make. Those will be evaluated for "passing on" quality, and will be dealt with accordingly. They might even get organized in the process!!! Next, I'll try to avoid getting any craft books from the library. Just for a year....

I'm going to stay away from the used books sales. And the free handouts, leaflets, patterns, etc. that come from a variety of sources.

I will stop checking the daily free pattern sites, and saving three out of five (or more!) of them.

I will stop following every link to every pattern ever written on the net.

I will try to avoid buying all the cool Lopi pattern books at work. Or any of the other cool books/pattern leaflets we get in... This one will be the hardest, I think - I keep looking at some of the new-to-me booklets (designed for yarns I only recently discovered existed, lol) and some of the Patons pattern leaflets... Fibre Trends, Fiddlesticks, among others that we carry....

I will knit (or crochet, or quilt, or whatever) from the patterns I already have - I will finish up some UFO's, get re-excited about the patterns I have already been so excited about that I just *had to* print right away and buy stuff to make "right away".

I will try to avoid buying any new craft magazines, except for the Quiltmaker as noted above.

I will get busy writing up the patterns that I've designed and are still in note form.

Now - most important - this is a pattern DIET, not a pattern "fast". I will not beat myself up if I come across something totally unique or irresistable, that I *know* I don't already patterns from, new Block of the Month quilts... that sort of thing. I'm just going to try to reduce what I already have, and try to avoid increasing the pattern stash exponentially...

Side benefit - if I start making for the patterns I have, then I also will be using up the yarn stash :) And heck, who knows - it might all start to get organized!!

Again - patterns which are allowed - any cats, any totally unique patterns that I don't have already, and any that I've looked for in the stash first but couldn't find. I am also allowed to browse for inspiration, but not save just for the sake of saving....

I'll look for or fix up something in the sidebar to keep track, too... and I desparately need to squeeze out the time to clean up and update the sidebar, one of these days.


  • At 8:40 a.m., Blogger Natalya said…

    Haven't checked out your blog for a while...I really do need to do that more!

    I found a pattern-a-day calendar at a thrift store that I've been intending to send you as a gift. It's out of date, of course, but still...all those patterns!

    So now I'm wondering if I should pass it along elsewhere? Or is there an exception for gifts, too?



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