In general, I don’t tend to do many projects at a time.  I like to finish things, and that doesn’t happen if I have too much going on at once.  SO, I don’t often have UFOs hanging around, but because of my spring/summer flare-up of carpal tunnel, I had put aside a few projects that had hurt my hands.  WELL!  It turned out that one of the projects only needed a little bit of work to be completed, and last night I wrapped it up.

This is a babydoll top for my great-niece.

I made the 12-month size for Caroline, who is only 3 months old, but she’s a healthy, chubby baby, so I hope it will at least fit for the Fall weather in Wisconsin, if not for the whole winter.   It’s only about 9″ long, which I suppose is good so it won’t impede movement when she starts rolling and crawling.

I made this in machine-washable wool, instead of cotton, because I imagine it as more of a winter layer than summer top.

Here’s the Ravelry link:  http://www.ravelry.com/projects/mhenry/cotton-baby-doll-top

I’m still surprised and delighted that I happened to have the same~ish yarn in my stash, because I think this color combo is super cute.  I hope my niece thinks so too!

Stash, stash-busting 

During my first few years of knitting, my stash was totally tiny. I had leftover balls and a few skeins I’d impulse buy at Stone Mountain and Daughter in Berkeley, back when they still sold yarn.   Eventually I graduated to an IKEA basket that could hold quite a lot. That was still ok.

But when I bought a spinning wheel and fiber, the storage space in the hall closet started to feel cramped. Then I bought a sewing machine, patterns, and fabric, and the space became more and more cramped.

I eventually realized that I don’t like or want a big stash for any hobby, especially living in an apartment with not a lot of storage space.  So for several months I’ve been on a use-the-stash mission. I don’t want to have more than my 4 boxes of yarn, 1 box of bear yarn, 1 box of fiber plus misc, and one box of fabric.

12-inch ruler for scale.  Look at that top box!  So much space available!  

It’s going ok- I’ve been using up far more stash than I’ve been adding, and the boxes have plenty of space. Yay!

With the sewing that I did when I couldn’t knit, my fabric stash went down A LOT and its box is spacious these days, in spite of a knitting friend destashing to me a few yards of lovely fabric.  The bibs and skirts that I recently sewed were surprisingly good for stash-busting!

My hall closet is much happier with less stuff. Oh- aside from knitting, sewing, and spinning, there are also also beading, stationary, and misc kids’ craft supplies here.

Here’s the bottom view:


Here you see my yarn stash, my ball winder, swift, spinning wheel,  white box full of bear yarn, and a tiny bit of the spinning fiber box.


Here you see my white box of fabric, a white folder file of patterns, my sewing machine, basket of knitting and spinning things, plastic drawers of kids’ craft items, cardboard boxes of random crafts, stationary, and beading supplies, and a few plastic bead boxes.

I don’t think it’s an overwhelming stash for someone with so many hobbies, right? I know some people feel guilt about having a big stash, especially if it’s really big, but for me it’s more of an inconvenience if the stash is too big to store easily in a small apartment.  Also, I really like finishing things, so I don’t like to have lots of leftover yarns lying around.  Enter bear knitting…..

My most recent stash-busting project: V bear. I aim to use every last bit of these pinks, then tackle other wee balls in the stash and make them disappear as well.
How do you organize your crafts? How do you stash-bust??

Beach day + whales!

Lately I’ve been reading about a large number of whales in Half Moon Bay (just a hop, skip, and a jump from San Francisco), enjoying something of a feeding frenzy.   I always think it would be nice to go and see them, but other things come up. This morning I was listening to NPR and something came up about the whales and how amazing they were over the weekend, and I realized that we were free today. So I packed up our swim gear and some snacks and the kids and I drove down to HMB for the afternoon. We were not disappointed.

It was pretty windy, but the kids played nicely together, it was sunny and warm, and the whales put on a great show.  I’m so glad we went for it!