What's In Your Stash? Yarn? Thread? Wire? Plarn? Other?
I stash all sorts of things...I work with yarn, embroidery thread, raw wool, and crewel wool. (I knit, embroider, and weave as well as crochet.)
Is It Mostly Scrap Yarn, New Yarn, Both, Neither?
I almost always have both scrap yarn and new yarn in my stash. I love using scrap pieces in my tapestry weaving to add flavor and variety, so collect all my own as well as gather scraps from family members.
How Big Is Your Stash?
Right now my stash is seriously depleted. I've been crocheting a lot of fitted shawls for relatives lately --- arthritic shoulders love having the extra warmth! I prefer having a goodly amount of yarn and thread on hand --- you never know when you'll want to start a project!
Any Organizational Advice You'd Give to New Crocheters?
Make sure to keep your hooks where you can easily find and access them. For myself, I have had to replace hooks at an extraordinary rate...until I made my own lining for my basket and sewed in pockets for them.
Explain What You Used to Organize Your Yarn / Thread
I started with a simple round, lidded wicker basket, but a very large one. I then took a large piece of muslin and made a liner that fits perfectly inside, sewing in pockets for my hooks, knitting needles, gauges, and so forth. I then used heavy thread and sewed the top of the liner to the top of the basket.
I have a second-hand dresser that I use for sewing and needlecrafts. Smaller items like embroidery thread, hoops, and hand-sewing needles go into those heavy plastic, zippered bags that sheets and blankets come in, sorted by type, then into the drawers.
How Do You Sort Your Yarn?
I organize mainly by fiber type. Yarns go in my basket, while most other fibers go into the drawer, inside plastic bags so I can see what's what easily.
I usually work straight out of my big basket when either crocheting or knitting with yarn; the basket is tall enough to keep the yarn from jumping out as I work, and if needed, I can put the lid on, too.
What I'd Do Differently
- I love my work basket. It has been great and held up for years. It is the absolute best solution I've found for keeping my hooks, needles, and yarns.
- I used to save those zippered plastic bags without knowing what I wanted them for, but knowing there was something. Now they're essential for sorting and keeping threads and work safe and clean.
Amy Solovay, About.com Crochet, says:
To Beth: Thanks so much for posting this; what an inspiring organizational system! Your basket is gorgeous, and the liner you made for it is genius.