Why I didn’t buy yarn for a full year


yes, you read that right. I, the self-pronounced queen of yarn, did not go to Joann Fabrics and purchase yarn in 2020. Okay, well it’s September and basically the end of the world *cough* sorry, year. 

There are three reasons I did it: 1) I was spending too much money on yarn 2) I didn’t have enough space for any more yarn 3) I didn’t think I could do it. 

Picture it, Sicil–Indiana, January 2020. A younger Evie goes to Joann’s with hopes and dreams of spending all of her Christmas money on yarn. She goes into the store, grabs a cart and heads to the yarn aisles. She stops, what’s that noise? She turns around to see a woman with not one but two carts full of yarn struggling to get to the front of the store. Evie could relate completely, it’s a really good deal. The woman joked that she didn’t have room for it all, but what could she do? It’s a really good deal. 

We both laugh at this joke as it is the plight of many crafters. Like I was investigating a murder as Perry Mason, I looked at her cart to find a clue that could lead me to the best deal. A little bit of this and that in every color, no real theme to her collection. So I asked “What are you going to make out of that?’ and she looked me dead in the eye and said “It’s going to sit in storage for the next year until I figure that out.”

Another laugh emits from our twisted smiles, but this time it was awkward laughter. You know, when you tell a joke that’s too painfully true that it isn’t really funny anymore? With that I trudged away to look at yarn. Would the yarn I bought today sit in my collection for another year too? It was like the rose-colored yarn turned a dismal brown when brought into the light. 

Each skein I looked at reminded me of a skein I had at home…taking up space in my yarn room. I remembered that thing of wool I was going to use for socks 5 years ago or the cotton for dishcloths never made. I want you to know how nightmarish my usually joyous trip to Joann’s became because it felt really strange to me too. It’s because when I really looked at myself, I found someone who really likes to hoard things, but hates to the point of loathing WASTE.

Plastic waste. One time only waste. Buying things and never using waste. I loathe it all. 

So that’s why I walked out of the store empty handed. And that’s why I knit only what I have too because having excess (to the point of obsession) doesn’t fit who I am and who I want to be. The person I am becoming doesn’t have enough time in the day to use all of the yarn she already has, so why add more? She has a run to get in, a meal to make (yes actually prepare herself) and wants to work on just ONE project tonight. Those are the important things, not trying to reorganize the yarn shelf to make everything fit or getting really frustrated with there is a yarn pile in the floor that she can’t organize.

Update: it’s been a year and a half since I wrote this, and folks I still haven’t bought yarn. Because the person I want to be wants to be really intentional about what I own. What are you intentionally doing during Covid?