All this re-organization gets to me. Personally. So much so that I’ve ended up with a touch of sciatica. All down my right leg with those lovely little twinges of pain which comes out out nowhere. All week long. Ack!
If you are dealing with serious knitting clutter, read on! Could be all you need is a little “Clutter Control”. It starts with your knitting space, then gets into every corner of your home. Which is a good thing! 🙂
This post will be all about getting my knitting stacks, stuff & stash into place. Because EVERYTHING in your home needs its own place. I’ve been notorious for letting too many things sit on countertops and tables without ever putting them away. Makes for some mess, if I say so myself.
Once all of your knitting stuff is right where it should be you’ll have PRODUCTIVITY in your life! Everything will be more streamlined – allowing you to easily find whatever you need, and FOCUS on what you need at the moment.
Organizing your knitting clutter isn’t particularly fun I know. In fact, it can seem downright daunting. But knitting clutter isn’t fun either. It blocks me from getting things done, REALLY getting them done. It costs me time, every time I go looking for something I need and can’t find. Minutes wasted.
I’ll make this easy (I like easy!) and break it down into THREE simple steps so we can get more knitting done FASTER . . .
Organizing Knitting Stacks, Stuff & Stash
1. “A place for everything, and everything in its place.”
That quote is credited to Benjamin Franklin. He wasn’t my favorite Founding Father (I’ll leave that argument for another post – one all about historical knitting), but he knew the power of words!
I’ve been around a long time. You accumulate stuff. Been married over 40 years; so the piles keep getting bigger. There are things I’ve had forever, it seems; like the beautiful blue parlor lamp my Mom bought us for our first wedding anniversary! Lots of other things I don’t want to throw away.
That’s why being organized is the ONLY way to go!
But, you need a real system; because out of sight, means out of mind, for me. How about you?
Start by putting knitting things in their obvious places. GET in the habit of keeping them there! That’s important. Put them back after you’re done with them, or have no further need of them TODAY! Easy, isn’t it? Yet, so hard!
Yes we have a mess of knitting yarns, needles, tools, gadgets, patterns, books, and magazines. Find a place for each one and always put things in the same places, and you’ll never lose them!
Think about what you use the most; most likely it’s yarn followed by knitting needles. Then, store them. Neatly, arrange by fiber or color. Needles can be stored in their cases like the one’s I have on my Wish List to order later today. Buy what you need, don’t stop at just one, if that won’t do the trick.
Look through everything you have — yarn, needles, accessories, tools, kits, patterns, books, magazines and know that each of these will be put away. In their own special places, if that makes you feel better!
What will you need? Boxes, crates, shelves, armoires, baskets, pouches, totes, slings, — what DO you need for all of your stuff? Figure it out now.
2. Task Batching
Now, this is the easy part. Because when it comes to any re-organizing, it’s a BIG project. Here’s what you have to do next:
Start throwing out. Assess everything.
- Is there yarn you’ve had for years stuffed into the bottom of the closet?
- What about those magazine stacks?
- Knitting books gone wild?
- Patterns thrown in every direction so you have no idea what’s where?
- Finished projects you haven’t seen in ages?
This is where you get to dig deep. Go through everything. Open every magazine, look through books or patterns, printed materials, brochures, catalogs, even bills if they’re there. Open everything and before that “thing” leaves your hand, decide what you’re doing with it.
Place it in it’s own organization pile, or trash it. Easy as that.
As you go, you will find things you no longer want or need, other things that no longer have the meaning they once did, and still others that you’ve forgotten all about, and want to get back to asap.
That spinning wheel for instance, needs some help. But here it sits, lonely & forgotten!
3. One by One, Step by Step
Start in one corner (whether that’s the room, the closet, the shelves) and set it right. Don’t just start moving things around That’s the worst idea. Go step by step, and re-organize. As you go, more will fall into place and new priorities may even start to pop up.
Clearing the clutter clears your mind! It’s very freeing. Like taking a broom and swiping all the cobwebs away.
As you saw in my “Knitting Clutter Control Part 2”, things are a REAL mess, still! It’s taken me some time to sort, re-pile, decide and re-organize my entire knitting space, but I’m getting there!
The good news is . . . that next week, right when September begins, this room will no longer look this way. 🙂
4. Dealing with “Stacks”, “Stuff”, and “Stash”
Creating stacks of stuff is not going to happen to me again. It’s one BAD habit that leads to nothing but MORE CLUTTER! So, the next time I get a magazine, into the niched magazine holder it will go. The same for yarn; it will be put into the appropriate bin or tray until I need it. Projects will find their way into my waiting projects baskets. How nice!
For now once my knitting space has been given a thorough cleaning (see this post for that), I can begin to put everything away. Into their obvious nooks and crannies which have been specifically created for them! Like brand-new knitting babies! I’ve got a home for you! I’m even setting up a “Stacks Basket” where any new mail, catalogs, stuff, will go until I look at it.
One last thing to do: every day, and I mean EVERY DAY, go through your Stacks Basket. Decide right then and there what the heck you’re going to do with it! Take 15 minutes every day for this task. You may not even need that much time, but block it out anyway.
Once you’ve cleared your desk and knitting space of clutter, put something else in its place. Maybe a pretty planter, or in my case, a large open shelf with my Bride Doll collection. ONLY place things where they should go when you walk into your knitting space. You’ve spent so much time re-organizing, don’t sabotage your great results!
If you need additional help or want to know how I starting organizing, go to this post. It’s the third post in my August Re-organization Project.
So, to wrap all of this up, let’s take control, and get this done!
Ready for a clutter-free knitting space and/or office?
Clutter Control Checklist:
- Start with your knitting space; clear it off and clean it up.
- Put things that have a place, in their place.
- Arrange for ALL items to have someplace to “live”.
- Task-Batch your way through all of the clutter. (Allow one month for this!)
- Put all of your desk items into desk organizers, files or whatever it takes to clean it up.
- Put all magazines into their own niched holders.
- Re-arrange bookshelves by throwing out, then sorting by category.
- Transfer your paper notes into an online venue such as Evernote – and throw the paper away. (Yikes, you can do this!)
- Gather all stacks, stuff and stash that comes in daily into a Stacks Basket.
- Give yourself 15 minutes per day to empty that Stacks Basket out completely.
- Make sure everything is sparkly clean in your knitting space!
- Lastly, keep it that way with intermittent re-organization.
- Give yourself a B-I-G pat on the back, because you are super!
As always, take your knitting to heart!
P.S. I love my spinning wheel even it is broken; but my husband will fix it. He’s very good at stuff like this! :-9
I have been making some amazing progress in my knitting space. Stay tuned for more pictures and check my Facebook page for updates! To be continued . . . and here’s few (3) books on how to get organized at home.