All About My Yarn Stash

Studio Re-organization: The After photos

I know I promised these photos a while back, but I got all excited about the giveaway and the birthday sale that I'm now getting around to it. Are you ready for them? Well here we go! Here's the before - my yarn corner, and the study in general. In dire need of some serious TLC!

Then during the cleaning and re-organization process:

And now the after!!

My little yarn corner (aka "studio") of the study, all cleaned up!

I "repurposed" one of our old bookcases for my bulky and superbulky yarns. (I donated most of the books we had, and moved all the other ones into the Expedit bookcase, making sure they all fit! Yay! More space for my yarn!)

I moved one of the 4-cubby IKEA Expedit bookcases to the poopoola's room, and kept this one to store my blocking equipment, notions, recently finished projects (in the top left cubby), and paperwork (in the green box shoved in the bottom left cubby). On top I have my trusty body form, buttons, ribbons, business cards and a photo book.

Pretty Ribbons and Buttons

Here's a trusty zip bag (that held one of our comforters) that now works as a holding area for projects that are in "the queue" i.e., ready to be worked on as soon as I'm done with the 5 currently on my needles! Teeheehee...

My knitting books, printed patterns, and folders hang out here. So do my yarn ball winder, and the tissue I use for wrapping my items before shipping.

To the right of my knitting books, we have my needle and equipment carrying cases, paper bags all ready for my next craft fair, and a Pampers holding box (re-use and recycle, right?) for projects that are in line to be frogged. Wedged in that little corner is a box full of my pattern swatches, a folder and clipboard, and my old trusty plastic mannequin.

On top of the new bulky yarn case is a sign I found at Ross (I think), and a jar I got at Goodwill. I filled the jar with pompoms and leftover yarn pieces, then stuck some of the straight needles I received from a friend when I was in the UK. Looks all quaint and cute, right?


And a grainy photo of how it looks together!

I hope you enjoyed photos of the re-organized "studio". Knowing how I roll, this arrangement will change again very soon! :)

Have a great week everyone, and hope you are getting ready for fall weather! I know I am, and I've got quite a few new lovelies for all of you!


What have I been up to lately?

Winding balls of yarn into cakes of yarn, that's what. I've been applying to jobs, writing exams for jobs, and falling sick for the past two weeks. So this week, instead of knitting, I did the next best thing - winding yarn.

Playing with all these different yarn colors actually gave me ideas for different color combos that I wouldn't have considered earlier. Check these out!

I hope to have some fun things for you to see next week. :)


Stitches West 2013 is this week

Once more, one of the premier crafting events on the West Coast is here! Yippee! Although I've lived in this area for the past 4 years, I've only made it to one Stitches West convention, the one held last year. I took one class with Gwen Bortner on using short row shaping in knitwear design, and then had some fun meeting Kristin Omdahl, Michelle Miller (Fickleknitter Designs) and Roxanne Yeun of Zen Yarn Garden. I also picked up some yarny goodness from a few booths at the market and even bumped into a college classmate. I haven't made any plans to attend this year, but that doesn't mean I won't go! My dear neighbor Claudine gave me a $2 off voucher for admission to the Stitches West market, so I'll probably go just to "admire" all the yarny and yarn-related goodness (admire is used very loosely here and can also mean buy...heheheh). I've also made a lunch date with my friend that I bumped into last year, so that should be fun. She informed me that Lion Brand yarn will have their yarn at 20% off. I'll be checking that booth out for sure.

Another booth that I'll definitely stop by will be Roxanne's (of Zen Yarn Garden). Her yarn is just gorgeous! It makes me so happy to see it, touch it, pet it and dream about what I'm going to make with it. Here is the loot I got from her booth last year.

I hope to meet Michelle and Kristin again. Another booth I want to visit is that of Alana Dakos of Never Not Knitting. She has some of the most gorgeous patterns out there, and her new collection, Botanical Knits, is just stunning!! She'll be sharing Booth 1147 with Becoming Art yarn line and shop, so you KNOW I'll be "admiring" that yarn too.

Another crafter, Kimberly of Kimberly's Craftini, has compiled a pretty extensive list of booths to visit and people to see in this post. I think I'll print the list and take it along to my market booth crawl.

If you don't hear from me for a while, I might be lost at the 2013 Stitches West market. :)

My PomPom Saturday

I was originally going to title this post "What to do when you are at home sick and have lots of yarn scraps", but it was too long and sounded like I was still high from all the cold medication I've been taking. :) But really, this past Saturday, I was at home with a stuffy nose and watery eyes and could barely focus on any knitting project. My son was also sick with the same symptoms, so we were all cooped up at home feeling miserable and wanting to do something fun. My son saw a few pieces of leftover yarn I had from a recent project and asked me to make a braid for him (I had made a few braids for him in the past). I was getting ready to do so when I remembered that I had lots more scrap yarn, and could make something super fun out of them - POMPOMS! He was super excited because he's usually not allowed to touch my yarn, and PomPoms sounded new and fun! (Oh to be 2 years old again! Everything new is exciting!).

I had a lot of yarn scraps..really, quite a bit. In December, I bought a $2 glass jar from Goodwill to store them and add to my display for the Bazaar Bizarre Fair.

For my pompoms, I used the Clover Pompom Maker (see picture below). I got mine from Joann but you can also find it online on Amazon.  

I had a lot of fun making my pompoms. Are you ready for the pompom explosion? Here we go!!

You don't need to buy a pompom maker to make your own pompoms though. Before I knew there were pompom makers, I used to hack my own little cardboard pieces together. I thought I'd share a bit of my process with you.

  Supplies and tools needed   Yarn scraps

  Old piece(s) of cardboard (I used an old Kleenex box)

  A pen

  A pair of scissors

  A large bowl/mug

  A smaller bowl/mug (or in my case, a spice bottle)


First, gather your pieces of scrap yarn together. You don't need them to be of the same color. You can group them by color family, yarn thickness, or how you are feeling today. :) I sort of went with the flow when making my pompoms. For this tutorial, I picked a teal and muted orange yarn scraps for my pompoms.

Next place your larger bowl/mug on the cardboard and draw a large circle. Use the spice jar/smaller mug to draw a smaller circle inside the larger one.



Cut the drawing out to get just a large round circle (with the inner circle still intact). Now fold the circle into two and cut out the inner circle. Once that is done, cut the cardboard into 2 so you have two moon pieces (see pictures below).


Get an 8 to 10-inch piece from the yarn scraps you'll be using for the pompom, and insert it between the two halves of the cardboard, holding them pretty tightly together. Then start wrapping the yarn around the two cardboard pieces. I held the two yarns together so they would be distributed evenly. If you wrap one color first, then the next, you'll get more of a striped or color -block/blob effect.


Once you are done wrapping all the yarn, hold the piece tightly, and tie a loose knot with the 8-inch piece you previously inserted between the cardboard pieces. Open the two cardboard pieces slightly so you can insert your scissors.

Cut the strands along the circular edge of the cardboard pieces.  Once you are done cutting, tighten the knot you made so the pompom puffs out.

Remove the cardboard halves (if they haven't fallen out by now) and tie around the pompom again to secure the knot. (I wrap and tie multiple times to use up as much of the 8-inches as I possibly can).


Once you've tied the pompom up pretty well, fluff it up a bit and voila! A fluffy, puffy pompom!!


I liked the pompom so much that I made another one in purple and brown.





Oh look! It's a pompom cup! Hahahhaha!!

I hope this helped those who want to have fun playing with pompoms. Making them is so addictive. Have a great week everyone.