Cold-Sheeping 2013!

So it’s that time again, the few days between the end of the old year and the start of the new.  That time when we all start thinking about things, making plans. 

For me, this year brought some changes — some positive — some not so positive, but at the end of it all, today I can sincerely say that I’m glad I’m ME!     In 2012, I followed my creative interests more than I had ever done before.   The following of those interests brought changes as well — some positive — some not so positive!

One of the not so positive aspects of my creativity is the ratio between the growth of my yarn stash and the output of finished projects.  True, I had school, work, and health things to manage, but at the beginning of this month, my stash was beginning to overwhelm me.  The size seemed to mock me, but that didn’t stop Cyber Monday sales additions.  So I had to decide — did I want to become a collector of creative mediums or did I want to express myself creatively through different mediums?  There is a difference!

As a teenager, I learned to sew and my sewing instructor (Mrs. Bibby) always started EVERY class with this verse:

Working Hands


Her goal wasn’t to have us create the most perfect garment ever, but it was that we worked hard at learning the techniques, concepts, recovering from mistakes and most of all, that we practiced our crafting consistently.   The idea was to enjoy what we did, but make effort even when things got a little difficult!  Not switch to something else or stash more goodies that just sat there!

I can still hear her voice explaining what she wanted us to do then and I know that the same lessons apply to me now.  This year, I didn’t  create with all my might but my stash kept growing!

After taking a good look at my stash and how I’ve used my creative time this year, I’ve committed to a concept called “cold-sheeping” (thanks ToniS) for 2013. In my case, cold-sheeping means that I would NOT make any yarn, knitting or crochet book/magazine purchases for 2013.  My personal goal is to creatively match my yarn with projects I’d like to make;  I have more than enough inspiration!  Between my craft library at home and on Ravelry, I have enough to keep my hands full or should I say … busy!  

My stash started to look like this:



but as much as I love my pretties,  I needed to do something and FAST!  

Like the Introverted Knitter said recently,  stash knitting and non yarn buying is a touchy subject in the fibre arts circle, but I’m going to do what is good for me personally.   I do feel that taking on this challenge is an opportunity for me to really creatively use my stash in 2013.  Since “necessity is the mother of invention”, I’m hoping that this challenge will open my eyes to  using my stash in ways I’d never thought of before.

My own personal rules for the stash-down, cold-sheeping in 2013:

  1. Catalog  yarn stash on Ravelry by January 31, 2013.  DONE!!! 12.29.2012.
  2. Cold Sheeping for 2013.   Absolutely **NO** yarn purchases for 2013.
  3. Cold Sheeping includes craft book purchases.  
  4. Combine Knit Picks Stash-downgeneral Stash Knit Down & Craft Book Challenge.
  5. Shop Knit Picks stash for swaps in KP loving groups.  If I can’t shop from my stash, then I wouldn’t participate in the swap.
  6. Reduce stash by at least 20 projects of varying sizes including blankets.
  7. Make first sweater.
  8. Finish or frog languishing WIPS.
  9. Start Christmas 2013 gifts early.
  10. Browse blogs and Ravelry less, craft more!

My only exception is for roving since I’m a soon to be new spinner.  My allowance is $50.00 every two months for roving purchases.  If I don’t use it, I’ll roll it over to the next period.

One of the tools I’m using to keep me on the straight and narrow is the ticker below. 

I was tempted to make a purchase last week but I didn’t want my ticker to show me falling off the sheep so early in the game.  It’s amazing what this simple, visual aid does for me.  Every time I’ve thought of making a purchase, I’ve thought about this ticker and what I want it to say.

Today, I reacquainted myself with friends, some old,

Creative Friends Old

from L to R:

  • my large WIP basket,
  • some of my craft books,
  • my small WIP basket

and made some friends new,

Creative Friends New

from L to R:

  • craft books and magazines I got for Christmas
  • a tree branch I found on the street last Friday that I’m going to trim and spray paint as a photography prop when it gets warmer

My creative goals coincide with some personal goals and I can’t wait for 2013 to begin! 

Here’s to a wonderfully, fulfilling, challenging, rewarding and full of learning creative year for all of us!  Here’s to crafting with all our might!  Here’s to my surviving a year of no yarn purchases!  LOLOL!  😀 


10 thoughts on “Cold-Sheeping 2013!

  1. KarinMT December 31, 2012 / 9:02 am

    What a wonderful post!! You make us Stash Downers proud. 🙂

    • Nicky December 31, 2012 / 9:07 am

      Awwwww … thank you all for being so welcoming and supportive!!!!


  2. savethestationery December 31, 2012 / 8:23 am

    Hi Nicky! I love this idea and I will jump right on aboard. I’ll only buy yarn for commissions if I take on any but other than that I will do projects from my considerable stash. Thanks for posting this and being brave enough to embrace it. I’ll do up a post so we can do this together.

    Wishing you a wonderful new year! ash

    • Nicky December 31, 2012 / 9:06 am

      Same to you sweets!!! I look forward to your progress!!!! I had to be brave. Personally I was moving to the yarn collector side of things rather than actually being crafty!


  3. creative urbanista December 31, 2012 / 12:56 am

    But wait. Does this mean you won’t be going to Rhinebeck next year? I did make a goal of not starting new projects until I finish current ones and I’ve managed to stick to that. Got a hat done earlier and now making progress on a wrap, which I hope to have done by the time I go back to work.

    • Nicky December 31, 2012 / 9:03 am

      Great job on sticking to your goal!!!

      No ma’am … as we say in New Yawk … “don’t get it twisted”. LOLOL!!! Rhinebeck is more than the yarn for me. It’s the company and the day out too! I’ll be going (all things being well), but in 2013 my purchases will be accessories (like buttons etc) and roving. Already spun yarn … no!

      Hope you’re having a great time off from work!!!!

  4. introvertedknitter December 30, 2012 / 7:06 pm

    Your goals are awesome and I look forward to watching your progress. The ticker is a brilliant idea!

    • Nicky December 31, 2012 / 12:22 am

      And I look forward to watching yours too! That ticker is motivation for my competitive spirit — only this time I’m competing against my own level of discipline.

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