Getting Organized IV: When Fail-Safes fail to Consider the Fourth Dimension

Last week, I talked about physically organizing my project bin and Yarn Bin as part of my new approach to knitting and craft in general. I didn’t get very far. Before I could really start, I needed to do something about my needle situation, which was akin to something like this:


Almost a year ago now, I inherited about a hundred pairs of straight needles (above are some of the ones I didn’t keep) in every conceivable size (and some inconceivable ones, I never knew there was a US 0) and even though I only kept one in every size I was missing, they still didn’t really have a home three months later. I’d been storing the shorter ones in a cylindrical gift box but the longer needles just went to the bottom of the Yarn Bin, which was fine space wise until their shifting started to tangle up my yarn.

Tayla opened my eyes up to the fact that you can get craft stuff on Ravelry and she also pointed me to other knitting sites. Unfortunately most of them only focused on circulars and didn’t really have anything for long straight needles, and worse, a lot of those places sold yarn. I got out of there quickly, only to find myself at WEBS Yarn Store, where I bought all the yarn. All. Of. It.

Or I would have, except that when I got up to get my credit card, the fail safes of The Approach (and all the organization) kicked in. Yes, I did find the exact yarn I need for all 12 projects I’m starting next, but I’m not knitting those now. I have the yarns I need for socks and if I’m to spend anything on craft, it needed to be the needle organizer and a crochet hook for the Jasmine Cardigan, not yarn. Then there is also the fact that if I get any more yarn, I’ll need to get rid of yarn in the bin and I’m not entirely sure what’s in there exactly. I just know that I kept it for a reason and I’ve found that it’s a good idea to listen to that instinct.

Having dodged that bullet, I went to check out a comment from one of my co-knitters. Paula was kindly pointed me to Etsy to find a straight needle organizer. It worked! While the organizer she linked me to wasn’t for me, I found Lena Brown Designs and the perfect organizer. I’m not being funded by her or anything, I’m just really pleased with how well everything worked out 🙂

I feel really fierce and official with this organizer and I’m pretty stoked to know that I have a place for all my 17.5″ long needles, and that there’s still room for the metal US 11’s and a wooden pair of US 13’s in projects right now.

I’m going to stop right here and clarify that I am not some paragon of virtue.

I resisted all the stuff on line but when I finally visited my first LYS, I was not so fortunate.

I did get everything on my list, all of which I’d budgeted for, except that I also purchased help tokens and was out $60 in seconds >_< After this The Spouse and I had to have a talk about my spending money on craft stuff when I still haven’t bought jeans and the ones I own are starting to look a bit worse for wear and too baggy to be stylish. She was really gracious about it, especially when I explained that I got the help tokens to force me to get over my shyness about going to yarn shops/asking for help and because I might get into trouble when attempting to work my first crochet pattern, but I still felt pretty bad. Student loans have now fully kicked in, and since I’m not working I need to act like I have some sense.

I hadn’t fallen prey to retail therapy in a while, but I think that after finishing the Nice Ribbed Socks, my first official project of the year, I was kind of at a loss which is weird because don’t lack for projects to keep myself out of trouble (or posts to write – they’re coming I swear!). It probably had to do with the hole where sock-time once was. So even though I didn’t want to make a schedule, I think it’s time that The Approach account for the fourth dimensional component to craft.

A Schedule of Sorts

Given that I’m now working with three queues, I made a new folder on my computer and filled it with two patterns/visual representation of the patterns I wanted to knit from each category, so now there’s no mystery and there’s a bit of flexibility in terms of choice. I think I can finish both shawls by October, so up next:

  • Gifts/Charity (I’m dying to get to these!!!)
Campside – Alicia Plummer
Baker Street Scarf – Toni Carr
  • Socks:
    • To my great dismay, the Nice Ribbed Sock pattern is a tough act to follow as not all patterns are written as accessibly for super sock newbies as that one was. Looking at them I felt that familiar intimidation that kept me from trying socks for so long, so they might not be ideal for Sock It To Me Thursday. I do plan on keeping the patterns I knit for that free because I don’t want cost + the possibility of ending up with an inaccessible pattern to be deterrents for potential sock knitters, so I have my work cut out for me for the next Sock Thursday.The Spouse suggested I check the library before I bought anything and that was a great call. I found a ton of free patterns both digital and otherwise but no sock patterns yet. Well, at least nothing that isn’t another Gusset/Flap Heel sock anyway. As Thursday draws near, I think I’m  going to try to do another Gusset/Flap Heel sock but try it toe-up. This will allow a bit more time to come up with a good pattern line up and for Socktacular (a book that gives you the tools to create your own pattern by providing instructions on separate techniques so that you can mix and match to create an infinite variety of socks) to arrive. Tayla recommended this to me last week and I this is the most genius thing ever!
  • Magginesium-wear:
    • I’ve started the Jasmine Cardigan, so these won’t happen for a while, which is a good thing since I’ve been slimming down and hopefully by the time the cardigan is done in the spring perhaps I’ll be at a more consistent size.
Simplest Sweater: Juliet Romeo Juliet
Pull Me Over: Andrea Black

Figuring out “Knit O’clock”

I have about 2 hours of knitting on any given day, so

  • Every Day:
    • 30 minutes to put everything away neatly, research and/or organization. Often this will include a working on knitting notes or a short sketch of a post since writing helps me figure these things out.
    • 10 minutes for The Mood Scarf
  • Monday: Gifts/charity (1 hour)
  • Tuesday: Socks (1 hour)
  • Wednesday: Anything sock related, including sketching out a post (1 hour)
  • Thursday: Knitting of choice (1 hour)
  • Friday: Knitting of choice (1 hour)
  • Weekend: Maggienesium-wear (2 hours)

There, boundaries: done.

And now there is no more putting off rolling up my sleeves and cataloging my yarn. I don’t know what half of it is, so I’ll be doing the burn test recommended by Tayla later this week but for today, I need to get to the mystery coils of yarn, wind them up into skeins and then enter all the knowns into my Ravelry stash. To hold myself to this and to give myself a reminder that I need no new yarn until most of it is gone (or May 2016), I’m going to post pictures of my fiber supply later on. I think referring to it as Supply instead of Stash might be a bit healthier.


6 thoughts on “Getting Organized IV: When Fail-Safes fail to Consider the Fourth Dimension

  1. I love your new knitting needle holder! Aren’t they fabulous 🙂 BTW, for free crochet help…I highly recommend The Crochet Crowd on youtube. He has an entire series for beginners and he’s just a lot of fun to listen to 🙂 Or, if you have any questions, you can always ask me! I’ve been crocheting for 38 years (I started when I was 8). If you want to add me as a friend on Ravelry, my user name is ftlsweetie.

    Liked by 1 person

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