Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Tidy Mind, Tidy Stitches, or How My Brain Works

Welcome to day 3 of Knit & Crochet Blog Week, or as we have been tagging it, 2KCBWDAY3. I can't believe I've actually posted three days in a row! I hope I can keep it up! So, today's theme is "Tidy Mind, Tidy Stitches." I can cop to the tidy stitches, because I really do like to see nice, even stitches in my work. The tidy mind bit is a little more difficult to claim. I can say with confidence that I like order and that I like to organize things into groups. I also like things to have their Own Place. I like the feeling I get when my craft room is organized, when everything is put away and I can work unencumbered. It's just that I don't always keep up on the tidying of all the things.

When I first moved into my current residence, the first room I set up was the craft room. We painted over the tangerine-colored paint with a boring, neutral beige, I hung some art on the walls, and set up my sewing table. At the time I think I might only have had just one plastic bin with yarn in it. It's funny how much gear a person can accumulate in just two years. Now I have three larger (but not too large) plastic bins of yarn, in addition to the one shoebox-sized one I had then. I also have more needles and more books.

Now the yarn bins have the yarn sorted by weight: worsted & thicker, fingering (a whole bin of sock yarn!), laceweight, and odds 'n' ends (in the original small bin). What this photo doesn't show is the five balls of Cascade Lana Grande leftover from the Umaro blanket. It's in one of those gigantic Ziploc bags that hold something like five gallons. It's nuts how big that bag is - I would never have bought it for myself. My mom sent it home with me one time, full of clothing or something else she wanted to get out of her house.

Needle storage isn't especially organized - I don't have a special system, or anything. I do have all my circulars in a little tin box which was once filled with peppermint bark. It no longer has that lovely vanilla-and-peppermint smell, but it holds the needles nicely. I have all my double-pointed needles in another tin, which once held Girl Scout candy. (I bet you never heard of Girl Scout candy, did you? One of my coworkers has a daughter in Brownies, and I have been made to understand that this is what they sell in the fall when they're not pushing the cookies.) My crochet hooks, of which I have very few, are stored in yet another tin, this one an old pencil case I brought back from my one-and-only trip to Okinawa. It says "Sachiko" on the lid. It's one of my prized possessions.

The only specialized needle organizer I have is my Della Q needle roll that I bought to store my Addi Clicks. It is a lovely chocolate-colored silk case, with little pockets for the needle tips and sleeves for the cables. There's even a zippered pocket for notions, which I use for storing the connector piece and the needle gauge. I love it. I also love my Addi Clicks, but that's a story for another time.

My craft books live on a movable shelving unit that I liberated from a former employer. It originally housed t-shirts, but was going to be thrown out. I snagged it before it got to the dumpster and it has been storing my books ever since. The thing I like best about it (besides that it fits my tall books really well) is that it has casters on the bottom, allowing me to move it so I can access the closet behind it. My knitting books have the top shelf, right at eye level, and is soon to claim the second one as well.

I think that just about covers the organization of my knitting supplies. The only thing I didn't photograph are the gallon Ziploc bags that I use for individual projects. But, surely, I'm not the only one who uses them. I love that they're just the right size for a sock project and that I can see everything at a glance: yarn, needles, pattern. Pop it in my tote bag, and I'm ready to roll. So, until next time.


  1. I love how you use tins to sort your needles! Tins are so great--the sound of them alone makes one feel organized!

  2. I have one more empty tin waiting to be put to use. Maybe stitch markers and other notions. They'll rattle nicely, I think!