Wednesday, 20 May 2015

Lovely new yarn storage

Until recently I've never had anywhere good to store my yarn - we don't have any spare rooms and so I've kept my stash in large plastic storage bags stuffed into my understairs cupboard. This meant that every time I wanted to choose some yarn for a new project I had to pull out all the other things in the cupboard - vacuum cleaner, walking boots, spare plastic bags, etc - then pull out several storage bags until I found the right colours (they were mostly sorted by colour). Then I carried the bags into another room so I look through all the yarn. This was all very frustrating, so I was very happy when we decided to get a new outbuilding constructed, replacing our old, leaky garage and shed, as it meant I would have some space for some decent, clean storage for my yarn.

The building was finished in March, then we had to decorate (very simple white paint throughout) and go on a couple of trips to Ikea to kit it out. I hadn't been to Ikea for years, so I had a wonderful time finding all sorts of bits and bobs, both for the Spare Oom (named after Mr Tumnus' confusion about where Lucy comes from in The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe) and the rest of our house. I wasn't really sure how much storage I would need, but the building is multipurpose, so I couldn't fill it wall to wall with wool! In the end I bought the largest Kallax shelving unit, and twenty-five fabric storage boxes to fill it up, which was just enough to get all my yarn in.

I spent a happy afternoon sorting all my yarn into the various boxes. The top two rows are all my acrylic dk that I mostly use for amigurumi, sorted by colour. Then I have a couple of boxes with wool and alpaca mix yarns that I've started to use more recently. The rest of the boxes are filled with different types and weights of yarn - cotton, mohair style, eyelash, chunky and 4 ply. This is the stuff that I don't use for my amigurumi patterns, so it had ended up at the back of the cupboard, almost impossible to access, so it was a treat to see it all again! Now, whatever yarn I'm looking for, I can just pull out the appropriate box and sift through it to find what I want. So I can tell what is in each box, I've crocheted little circles of the appropriate colours or type of yarn and pinned them on the front.

All this lovely organisation makes planning a new pattern so much easier, and I'm trying new projects with different yarns that I've never done before. I bought some plants from Ikea to put on the windowsills, and I used my newly discovered cotton yarn to make brightly coloured doilies for them to sit on - the very first doilies I've ever made - using this pattern. I've also selected lots of different colours of dk yarn to practice Tunisian crochet, making a cushion cover for the little sofa in the Spare Oom - more on that in a future post when it's finished.

On top of the shelves I've got three plastic boxes full of all my completed amigurumi. These used to be up in the attic, so they were a real hassle to get to if I needed to check something. As well as the Kallax shelving I bought a Billy bookcase in case I needed more storage. I don't need it for yarn (at the moment), but it's great to store all my crochet magazines and books. Now I can just sit there and browse through them when I'm looking for inspiration. At the moment I've filled the spare space with all my bags that I keep current projects in, and arranged a few of my amigurumi on a shelf to cheer me up. I also just bought a cool Hobbit-themed storage box - not sure what I'm going to store in it yet, but it was too much fun not to buy!

As you can probably see from the photos, the colour scheme is a white background with lots of bright colours in contrast, like the button design rug I chose from Ikea. We haven't quite finished in there yet, there's still a magnetic noticeboard to put up, that I can fill with inspirational pictures, and a couple of bits of Star Wars wall art. I think this room will end up with all the quirky things in it - we have a clock made from a squashed beer bottle to hang up yet, and a friendly Mountie that was a gift from our Canadian relatives waves at people through the front window. But for now, I'm just relishing being able to find whatever yarn I want, when I want it!