Last night my husband asked me a very thought provoking question: Do you buy yarn with a project in mind or do you buy yarn because it’s pretty?
Normally, I am Johnny-on-the-spot with an answer to his knitting questions. But for this one I had to pause because I have done both. I think most knitters, except my husband, have done both. So what’s the right answer? The answer, for me, depends on your perspective on stash management (I guess I’m creating a new term).
To let the non-knitters in our interesting knitting world, your stash is how much yarn you have stored in your house. Most knitters try and manage our stashes, but most of us do a poor job of it, When I returned to knitting, I was very anti-stash, mainly because I had a “stash” of other crafts I’d done cluttering up my basement (and I’ve never met a craft I didn’t like). Unfortunately, I’ve failed at keeping my stash small. It’s not big, but I think it would take me a year to knit through all the yarn I current have.
So I think that if you are anti-stash, you should buy the yarn with a project in mind. I find that when I do this, I usually only buy the yarn I need for the project, thus helping with stash management. My husband is a testament of that. He has a very small stash because he only buys yarn for the project he has in mind.
|Emotional purchase. |
Malabrigo Finto. So soft...
Now when I go yarn “shopping,” that’s a whole different story. Any kind of shopping, I think, involves emotions. When I go yarn shopping, I buy yarn for the emotional response. Something is a lovely color, or wonderful to the touch, and then you buy it. You pet it and take it to your knitting group so everyone can ooh and aah over it. Pure emotion.
I have, however, found the wicked downside to emotional yarn shopping: when you finally figure out what you want to make with the random skein or two you bought, you many not have enough yarn for it. It’s hard to figure out how much yarn you need when you don’t know what you’re making.
Still, this is a personal preference. I don’t think there is a wrong answer or a right answer. I think a little yarn shopping is good, but if you don’t want a huge stash, stick with buying yarn by project.
What do you think? How do you buy your yarn?