I know so many awesome knitters, and if there’s one thing that unites them, it’s “the stash.” Yarn for upcoming projects, yarn they loved and just had to have, leftover yarn, gifted and inherited yarn… stashes can quickly grow out of control. In fact, when I needed a picture of a stash for the cover photo, I texted my knitting friend and the co-owner of Fleece to Fabric and said “are you near some yarn right now?” Her response was “Always” and she sent me a picture of what was next to her at that moment!
Recently I had a question about how to manage a large yarn stash in a small space. Since this seems like a problem that more than one person has, I thought I’d share some answers.
Analysis: defining the problem
Hobbies are one of those things where the relationship between the space and the activity really matters a lot, because they create a lot of clutter-in-motion (happy clutter) that can quickly become just regular, annoying clutter.
If your space fits your stash but not your knitting habits, you won’t be able to maintain it. So it’s important to look at both parts of the equation when deciding how to manage it.
My solutions assume you have relatively limited space compared to how much yarn you want to store. I have prioritized vertical storage and visual assessment. So, I assume you want to be able to quickly look and see what you have, whether it is “out” on display or not.
All of these solutions compartmentalize yarn in some way. Most of the people who have taken these pictures have organized by colour, but when thinking about your own stash, include things like different weights or fibers. If you tend to have a wide variety of yarn, you’ll want a solution with more compartments. On the other hand, if you tend to say, use mostly the same type of sock yarn in different colours, you can choose options with larger, but fewer compartments.
This is a visually stunning option that has a lot of flexibility. It’s highly customizable to the space you have, and can incorporate tools as well as yarn.
Get the whole tutorial for this solution at Knits for Life
Shoe bags or over-door cubbies
What we like about shoe bags is their limited capacity per loop. It keeps things easy to find, and easy to pull out.
If you don’t have closet space for your stash, you could put up a wall shelf with hooks or a bar underneath that you can hang the bags off of. Then you can have baskets or boxes for your tools and project bags on the shelf.
A quick and easy solution
There are also a wide variety of “over the door” hangers that are basically the same, but have hooks to sling them over your door instead of on a rack. Which you choose really depends on the space you’re using.
X insert for bookshelf
If you have a shelf dedicated to yarn (or that you plan to dedicate to yarn) an X insert can be a really great way of keeping it organized.
All About Ami has the full tutorial for this great x-insert
However, Ami’s solution pictured above was to create a custom-sized insert. The most difficult part of this is the planning: the actual process of making the insert is pretty easy. So, if you like the look of this, or have a shelf already in use that would benefit from this design, definitely check out her tutorial!
What say you knitters?
In general, I feel the best solutions are “one stop shop” solutions that keep all parts of your knitting together: yarn, tools, project bags, patterns and whatever else. That way, when it’s time to put something away or get something out, it’s all right where you need it.
But I’d love to hear what you think. Have you tried any of these solutions? Do you have different ones, or priorities we missed? Let me know in the comments, or on our Facebook page. And if you want more ideas, follow my Craft Storage And Organization Pinterest board