spring cleaning: a giveaway

stuff I’ve won, originally uploaded by earthchick.

I’ve won a lot of stuff in the last few months!
1. October: 850 yards of laceweight merino wool from Earthly Hues, in "butter," dyed with 100% natural dyes. Won from Mel , in her awesome Breast Cancer Walk fundraiser.
2. December: super-cool customized stamp from The Paper Princess in a giveaway from soulemama .
3. January: scrumptious fingering superwash merino in "Denim Dream" from Spinning Colors , won in a giveaway on Stephanie’s blog .
4. January: luscious Artyarns Supermerino from Heather , in a blog contest.
Some really fabulous women gave some very generous prizes, and I feel very spoilt!

[Actually, would you believe I won another giveaway in October but the person never actually sent me anything? I finally quit watching for it in late December.]

Anyway! Blogland has been so good to me, it’s time to pay it back a bit.

I’ve been working hard lately to clean out and organize my house, specifically my study/studio, where all of my craft supplies live (okay, who am I kidding – there are numerous boxes of craft supplies in the basement as well. And there’s a box of my yarn stash under my bed. Okay, there are also a few boxes of yarn in a bedroom closet. But still. A lot of my craft stuff is in my study/studio). In the process of cleaning out, I came across this gorgeous yarn, purchased on a whim in Atlanta, in the spring of 2007.

It’s Rio de la Plata, handspun, kettle-dyed 100% Uruguayan wool, 2 hanks (280 yds total), in the colorway M42 “Multicolor” (violet tulip, salmon buff, ethereal blue). Isn’t it a lovely colorway for spring? I think I originally bought it thinking I would either use it to make spring vests for the boys, or a pair of longies.

It has been sitting unused ever since then, and though my inclination is to hold on to it and find a use for it some day, I’m trying to be tough with myself. I’m betting someone else out there could find something lovely to knit up this season – maybe a “My So-Called Scarf”?

Would you like to have it? If so, leave me a comment with some piece of advice about organizing for crafts (or for anything else, for that matter). Or, if you are as disorganized as I am, just leave me a comment saying, “Hey! I want that yarn!” The yarn is on the chunky side of worsted, and the retail value of the 2 hanks is $28.

I’ll run the giveaway until Tuesday, April 7, at noon (EST), and announce a winner later that day. (I’ll do a random number generator to determine the winner.

Meanwhile, check out this giveaway. Orinda5 is hosting a drawing on her blog at orinda5.blogspot.com – the prizes are stunning. Take a look and enter. And while you’re there please make a donation to help her community orchestra keep going. She had originally intended to run a raffle, but it turns out that Minnesota has very picky laws when it comes to contests and the internets, so the prize-drawing will not be linked to the donations. But please please consider giving while you’re there. I’ve gotten a lot of stuff for nothing in these past few months, maybe you’ve gotten freebies here and there too. So how about paying it forward and passing on the good, okay?

35 thoughts on “spring cleaning: a giveaway

  1. Organizing! HAHAHAHAHAH! Yeah, um. I do love that yarn, and I think I would most likely stick with your original idea and use it to make a vest for Sam.

  2. I’m Lori_NY on ravelry – I have no advice to offer, but I’m looking forward to reading the comments in the hope that someone else will! That yarn is really beautiful.

  3. You must have Lady Luck watching over you. I never win anything, but I still join in. It’s fun.

    So organisation. Hmmm, I have some thoughts on it but have not implemented them as I am about to move apartments soon. If I had a spare room with which to use for my crafts I would have a desk for the PC and for just jotting down notes, etc. I will have a wooden shelf with maybe 3 to 4 tiers where I will have clear plastic bins (the type you get at IKEA) where I will store my yarns. The yarns will be segregated by brand and then by weight then by colour.

    I will have another shelf where I will keep my craft books and knitting patterns. The patterns will be arranged by type of garment, but there will be a folder where my to-knit patterns for the current season/year, or inclination which ever comes first.

    I will also have these clean clear bottles with or without caps (probably the sauce bottles I’ve saved up) which will hold buttons, knitting needles, rulers, pens, pencils, scissors, etc.

    I will have a comfy one-seater sofa with foot stool. Plenty of light and music, yes, there must be music. That is my ideal craft room. I hope I will be able to build/create it one day.

  4. pretty yarn!
    I have no organizing advice, really. my stash looks nice because it is stored in attractive bins, but there’s no underlying organization. which means that every time I go to find something, I have to pull everything out and spelunk. so, maybe label the bins, at least? 🙂

  5. whoa, that yarn is gorgeous! Thanks for the link to Orinda5’s contest – I posted about it on my blog as well. woo-hoo for paying it forward!

  6. In the spirit that organization can/should/might be fun, I’d suggest recruiting your boys for assistance. Every now and then, I ask the youngest to sort stuff–just because it makes me laugh to see her categories. 1)by texture, as in, “In this box, the yarn is soft like baby chicks. In this box, kittens. In this box, Matilda (our sheepdog.) In this box, the llamas at Baba’s house. 2)by color, as in, “In this box, the colors in the quilt on my bed. In this box, the colors of all of our soccer teams. In this box, the colors on the banners at church. You get the idea. Doesn’t help all that much, but it sure is amusing.

  7. I have a 10 year old daughter that would love a scarf. That looks like yarn she could knit herself!

    As for organization. Forget it! Go knit! Yarn just hops around and makes itself messy when you’re not looking.

  8. I don’t know if it’s an organizing tip but it is a stash mgmt technique — I use a chest for my yarn. If it’s full — no more buying. Have space? Buy some more!

  9. Hello!

    I keep most of my crafty supplies in large baskets on an even larger bookshelf. I wouild like to tell you that they are all neatly stowed by item type etc, but that would be a lie. They are mostly sorted, though there is more than on basket of random craft things.

    My kids craft stuff gets kept on shelves in the back pantry, stowed in coffee cans. This works well for them, they can find what they need and they leave my stuff alone.

    Good luck organizing!

  10. Baskets are my favorite type of organization.

    Other than that, I don’t have much to suggest, but I would love that beautiful yarn!

  11. Fishing tackle boxes are wonderful for small things. They are cheaper than craft boxes but they are basically the same thing!

    I also like over the door”shoe” organizers for small things like fat quarters, circular needles, etc. The pockets are clear so you can see everything and it uses up previously unusable space!

    And, yes, I’d like the yarn!

  12. How about using that yarn to knit “Just Enough Ruffles” (I think that’s what it’s called, that ruffled scarf by Laura Chau). I will happily take it off your hands.

    Sadly, the best way to organize your stuff is to just have less stuff. These days I am trying to make it so the rate of stuff going out of my house (to Goodwill, in the trash, whatever) is greater than the rate coming in (yarn included).

  13. Oh, that is super pretty yarn! My best method to organize crafts (or anything else) is to go in looking for things to donate. It is so hard to just throw things away and having the donate mindset really helps.

    As for organizing what you decide to keep – I am not very good at that. Like a lot of other people, I love clear plastic storage boxes. Also, I love the IKEA storage system we have for the kids toys – I think a lot of people have it – it is the 4 by 4 cubicle unit.

  14. What beautiful Yarn !!!

    The way that I have organized was to join a swap on Ralvery and started getting rid of the things that I knew that I was not going to use, for things that I couldn’t wait to cast on for. When I have a project for the yarn, it gets used. This has trimed my yarn stash down to a “Happy Stash” instead of a unloved and unused one.

  15. What beautiful yarn, indeed! I once read a tip that said to hang skeins of yarn in a row across a wall–I don’t know if it would help that much with the organization, but think how pretty it would be to have a rainbow of skeins as wall art!

  16. I keep most of my yarn in a dresser – it lets me designate different drawers for different weights or fibre types, and it’s all there to see at the pull of a handle. Thanks for the giveaway! :o)

  17. My best advice is to avoid stashing more than x amount, where x is whatever amount makes sense for your life: a sweater’s worth, a full bin, a closet. Stick to it! Also, keep yarn in clear plastic ziplock bags with total yardage written on it. That way it doesn’t get separated.

  18. I finally got around to organizing my fiber room in the last couple of weeks. I moved into this house almost three years ago, but never got my work table set up and my loom was buried in the corner. Now it’s a usable space, though I did have to move some stuff into the garage. Oddly enough, after accomplishing this cleaning/organizing job, I feel the urge to keep going on the rest of the house!

  19. I keep my yarn in the flat storage boxes under the beds (that’s right, I used the plural–yipes!), sorted by color. I buy the storage units that are clear so I can pull them out and see what’s there easily.

  20. The yarn is so gorgeous! My daughter would completely love it (ok, I would also!)

    I wish I was more organized. Maybe I will also learn some great ideas.

    Thank you for the opportunity.

  21. Mmmm, yarn! That’s pretty! I organize my yarn by how urgently I need to make something with it. One bag out for deadline gifts, one bag for gifts with no deadline, one bag for KAL supplies. Other than that, it’s more-or-less sorted by weight, and all packed in ziptop baggies in plastic storage tubs. Active WIPs live on my sewing table.

  22. Wow – lovely! I’d respond just in the hopes of encouraging you to keep posting often but the yarn’s beautiful too!

  23. That’s some beautiful yarn and I’d love to have it.
    I don’t really have any ideas to help you organize as I’m incredibly messy myself and my stash is small enough to fit in a single box 😦

  24. Yup, I won a contest too. Still haven’t gotten the prize. Oh well 🙂 What can you do?
    In answer to your questions, yes, I would like that yarn because it is beautiful.
    As far as organization, well I am working on that too. Right now I have stuff in storage boxes in out of the way places. For some pretty stuff, I keep it in glass jars so I can look at it.

  25. What I’ve done is put sweater quantities into $2 round boxes on sale from Hobby Lobby. They stack prettily and are sturdy. I’m v. jealous about your personalize bookstamp. The design is perfect.

  26. So funny–I was the other winner of the contest you mentioned winning in October…I think I gave up looking earlier than you did! I had actually forgotten about it!

    My tip for organization is that once you find a system that works…schedule in a clean-up/organization time often. For me, it helps to do it after each big project that I work on or once every month or two. Seems excessive but it prevents it from getting back to the point that is just overwhelming!

  27. Hey, I want that yarn.

    But also, I think the key to organizing is keeping up with it. I can spend a whole day getting my room organized, but two days later it is already looking messy again. If I take a few minutes each evening to put things where they belong, it usually stays organized longer. I’m not very good at that. 🙂

  28. I’d love to have that yarn.
    I organize my stash by putting it on shelves. I love being able to see what I’ve got and to look at the colors. If I hide it away then I tend to buy a lot of similar stuff.
    The problem is that I cant keep it like that for long without it getting dusty.

    I also have a tall dresser that is perfect for yarn storage and knitting notions.


  29. I second Mandy– the upkeep is the hardest (and most important) part. But I also have tried to make organizing my crafty materials rewarding by keeping some of the most beautiful yarn/fabric out so I can admire it when I pass by. Sometimes this is in a basket or on a shelf, and last year I found the best chest of drawers with glass front panels at treasuremart (one of my favorite stores in Ann Arbor!), and it’s the perfect way to keep yarn organized and visible. It always feels nice to change things up and keep it neat 🙂

  30. Saw your old post for the Rio De La Plata yarn that was under you bed. Knitting a sweater with this exact yarn and need more. Do you still have it? Thanks, Kate Schulz

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