The Life Changing Magic of Stashbusting

I recognize that writing a blog post belies my struggles with decluttering. Why am I at the computer and not elbow-deep in stash? Well I didn’t accumulate the stash in one day, so this isn’t going to be easy.


I got the idea to sort my stash after being reminded of the Life Changing Magic of Tidying up on the Curious Handmade podcast.

I watched Clara Parkes’s Craftsy Class on Stashbusting. But I really craved more detail in the section on sorting your yarns. Because it wasn’t obvious to me. Where Clara’s class really excels is helping you figure out how to say goodbye to WIPs, frog, re-set your yarn’s twist, matching yarn to projects, combining in new ways. It’s chock full of great ideas, I fully fully recommend it. BUT, I needed much more detail on the sorting step.

I think that is where KonMari can help. I thought it would be interesting to compare the approaches. Clara Parkes says you should “prune” the yarns, so you are eliminating. KonMari says only: Keep what you love; there’s only one rule: does it spark joy?

When do you know you have a problem?

Both Clara Parkes and Marie Kondo refer to the invisible stash/stuff. Clara Parkes says, “If you no longer know what’s in your stash, your stash no longer works for you.” Marie Kondo says items, such as books, become invisible when they are stashed away. Even books, which sit on shelves baring their spines, in full view: they become invisible and dormant. You need to wake them up, and make them conscious again.
I think the act of going through the yarn brings awareness to you about what you have and the intention behind it, and knowing what you have. I think the overall aim is to *stop buying stuff you don’t need*.
When are you done?
If you love everything in your stash and it makes your heart sing, then you don’t need to declutter even if you have a shed load of yarn. KonMari doesn’t prescribe the size or amounts of what to keep (33 items of clothing/100 things, etc). She said those methods are pointless, hard to follow and don’t serve the purpose.
The vision is to be surrounded by a joyful environment. If that’s a library full of books, or a spartan white room, it’s totally up to you.

The emotional feelings in fibre

Clara Parkes and Kon Marie agree that there are going to be easy wins, things you just KNOW you want to keep. For books, KonMari calls this the “Hall of Fame.”
Clara asks you to detect the feelings you’re getting when you sort the yarn. She suggests you’ll feel there’s a burden, for unfinished projects or untouched yarn. Let it go.

What about the “ambivalent” yarns?

This is where I think there’s a difference in the approaches.  Clara says to bag it up and check back in 6 months. Kon Mari would probably just say “bin it!” (or Donate of course!)

Next: Step by step

OK – This was getting a bit long and now it’s bedtime. I’ll break this into another post and break down the KonMari steps in relation to yarn!

6 thoughts on “The Life Changing Magic of Stashbusting”

  1. My stash is fairly small compared to other knitters I know, so there isn’t much I want to get rid of. The things I no longer like aren’t of interest to others, I noticed when trying to sell it off cheaply. I love the rest of my stash though! I have some yarns that are so precious to me that they have been waiting for years for the right project to come along. Will it ever happen? Who knows! But for now I love going through my stash and discovering the treasures I had forgotten.

    1. Lol that is the danger isn’t it! I think Hannah Fettig had a good point. She said that she kept the most precious yarn for so long she actually didn’t like it anymore(!) She’s a true stash minimalist. That will basically never be me.

    1. Thank you, Susan! I posted another blog about it. But I keep on leaving blogging until really late at night. I’ll post the final notes tomorrow.

Comments are closed.