As knitters we all collect odds and ends that roll around the bottom of our knitting bags, leftovers from previous projects, unknown yardage or yarn weight and yarn you couldn't bear to part with because you love the colour or feel of it.
With limited storage I knew I needed to do a bit of a spring clean to get my yarn collection in order. As I mostly work with lace and cobweb weight yarns I decided it was the heavier weights that needed most of my attention, so I spent many a happy hour taking photo's and adding all my stash with correct weights to Ravelry so that I could match it up and queue it with a suitable pattern (such a fantastic way to keep organised - you can even print off a hard copy and include notes for yourself).
I have to say that Ravelry on this point is fantastic. At a glance I could see all my yarn, narrow it down to yarn weight, check my yardages and match up patterns with such ease. I even printed off a hard copy of my stash through excel so I can keep it in my pattern folder and check my progress as I knit along. I really wanted to decimate my stash of 4ply, dk and aran weight yarns (I mostly had small amounts of each).
So here's what I made :)
Elisa's Nest Tote by Purl Soho (free pattern) in Sirdar Luxury Soft Cotton 4ply (99 yards/90.5 metres used)
Little Leaf Accessory Bag by Sue Falcone (free pattern) in Tivoli Tweed Aran in pink (110 yards/100 metres used)
I had some Amy Butler fabric left over from another project that was perfect for lining the bag.
I had a little yarn leftover so I added an i-cord handle (long enough for my daughter to wear cross body) and a little square simple purse (in the same basket weave pattern) with a teddy bear button (free from a knitting magazine).
I enjoyed the sewing part so much I even did french seams!
Brittany Cowl by Jill Szalaj (free pattern) in Rowan Amy Butler Belle Organic DK in 4 colours (194 yards used)
I am blocking this cowl at the moment so have no better photo's of it, but it is beautiful. A very simple pattern, gorgeous yarn and I can't wait to pair it with my new raincoat!
This panda outfit you have seen before here! I used the Sirdar Luxury Cotton again and the entire project used 454 yards approx.
Apple Cosy from Elizabeth Lovick and Fleurtje Eliza in the May issue of Yarnwise Magazine (Issue 60), using Berroco Mica and Patons UK Cotton DK (70 yards used approx.)
I think it will make a nice gift for the little one's teacher at the end of the year.
Of course, there had to be baby jackets (Elizabeth Zimmermann's Baby Surprise Jacket) to match the booties! Check the link above for more details. I used 1,034 yards approx.
I made two of the reusable totes, with some amendments to this one, there are two handles and a little pouch to pop it into when it's not being used. I used 135 yards of yarn.
February Sweater by Elizabeth Zimmermann, blogged in the post linked above. I used 198 yards of yarn approx.
Cabled Mug Cosy by Kerin Dimeler-Laurence (free pattern) using Tivoli New Celtic Aran (42 yards used)
An easy fun project that means I now never have cold coffee, result!
My Ruby slippers (Starry's More Marys Booties by Starry Knitting) were also blogged in the baby boom post above. I used 68 yards approx.
I have been busy and I have felt like I was on a huge mission. Now the end is in sight, I have about 120 yards of aran scraps in 3 colours and 13 yards of dk cotton left to fit into a useful project, but then I'm done! I have successfully used all the heavy weight yarn in my possession (2,616 yards of yarn), made quite a few presents and now I think I deserve to sit back and tackle a fine lace shawl! What do you think?