Ask any knitter and they’ll admit they have more yarn than they can use. The stash, as it’s called, comes in handy for last minute projects that require small amounts of yarn or can be made with combinations of yarn weights and colors.
In my stash, I have leftovers from sweaters and vests in case I need to make repairs or lengthen a sleeve or hem. I have yarn I’ve bought when a local store went out of business. And I have yarn I’ve bought from stores online. And therein lies my problem.
The Internet has made me addicted to yarn shopping. While knitting is a wonderful hobby, overbuying yarn isn’t. I’ve kidded around with friends that I need a support group, or a 12-step program. When there’s an ad for yarn on sale, or a free shipping offer, or a pattern or favorite yarn brand I can’t resist, they got me good. For example, I fell in love with a poncho pattern and bought yarn to make several, listing in my head all the people who I’d shower with gifts. The same for a child’s hat pattern. My problem is that I’ll make one, or even two, then get bored and move on to another project. Or buy something else.
In the scheme of life, these aren’t extravagant purchases and my yarn supply isn’t taking over the entire square footage of my house. I can justify that I purge now and then, either by donating yarn to charities or giving bundles to friends.
But what about everything else?
Ann Patchett’s article in today’s New York Times, “My Year of No Shopping, resonated. How much more do most of us need?
There are great excuses to shop. A little retail therapy. Gifts for grandchildren. Just to browse. Yet reasons to live with less are environmental. We shop; we discard. We fill landfills with fabrics and other materials that don’t biodegrade and contribute to global warming and pollution.
A no shopping year? Could I do it? I doubt it. But I can unsubscribe to emails from retailers to avoid succumbing to discounts. I can limit my Internet browsing to things I only need. I can promise to not buy more yarn.
What about you?