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March Summary

A side view of a hexagon-cardigan folded in half on a white background. The colors alternate between navy and a light blue/white variegated, changing to red variegated.

I'm just over 3 months into my stash enjoyment goals for the year, so it seems like a good time to check in with you all!

If you're new, the focus of my Stash Enjoyment theme is exactly what it sounds like - enjoying the yarn I've already purchased instead of being caught up in the hype of constantly buying more. It's not necessarily a buying freeze or "yarn diet" as people like to call it, but is a positive focus on the fact that I've got more than enough yarn and would like to enjoy it instead of leaving it to languish on the shelf.

I calculate yarn used by yardage and by weight, so I'll add yardage in when yarn is purchased and subtract it when it is used up, given away, destashed, etc, which gives me my net +/- number for the month.

Stash Start (pre-2022): 195,425.5 yds total in stash

January: +3,746 yds

February: +9,847 yds

March: -1,755 yds

Current total, 10 days into April: 207,263 yds in stash

So, what changed? I stopped buying yarn and started finishing projects. Currently it's been just over 40 days since I've bought yarn and I'm loving it! Instead of seeing the stress of the number going up, using what I have feels like a more attainable goal.

I finished three decent sizes projects in March, which I'd like to share with you!

Project 1: Engelkristall Socks

A pair of hand knit socks on a concrete background. The socks feature light green, twisted stitch cabled diamonds running down the front of the sock.

These socks were the qualifying pattern for the Sock Madness competition on Ravelry. I haven't competed in it for a couple years, but felt like this year I could use some normalcy and gave it a shot.

They're absolutely beautiful, but I failed to take gauge into account, so they fit my eldest son, who wears a US kids 3 (instead of me who wears a US Women's 8.5). All in all, the pattern is really lovely and forced me to try a lot of techniques I normally would have skipped (like twisted stitch cables!)

Project 2: Ipomea Socks

Lace and twisted stitch socks knit with pale mint green yarn. The lace motif looks like a leaf hanging off a chain around the top of the sock.

These socks were for the next round of Sock Madness. Honestly, they were a push. I found as I was knitting them that my perspective on knitting has changed. I no longer enjoy the competitive nature of the event; These socks do not fit me either, as the smocking at the top makes them too tight to even pull over my instep. I knit them with US 1.5 needles (2.5mm), which is my normal sock needle; used a thicker yarn than usual (Knit Picks Hawthorne) and still can not wear them.

I thought I would be able to cut the top off and do sock surgery, but it seems that all I did was destroy a sock. Having arrived at that point, I *did* attempt the next round's sock, but realized my heart is no longer in the competition and have dropped out.

Project 3: Maple Lodge Poncho Test

Ruth stands smiling with a light gray and pink/red striped poncho draped on her body.

This poncho was a crochet test project for the designer. I've never made or worn a poncho before in my life, but the construction of the pattern seemed fun and it fit a yarn in my stash that I wanted to use up.

The construction is intriguing, but I honestly don't think I'll ever wear this - it will likely be gifted to someone else who wears ponchos. There's nothing wrong with the pattern itself, it's just not my style.

So, there you have March! I'm hoping to carry on this momentum with me for the next few months - I have a couple fairly large projects that should be finishing up soon, which would contribute nicely to the yardage dent I'm making. Apparently I use between 1,000-2,000 yds per month, so I'll have to keep going at that rate for 5-10 months just to compensate for the over-purchasing in February.

I'm ok with that, though. Seeing progress (however slow) is encouraging!

If you're working from stash, how's it going? Are you meeting your goals? Did you have to start over a couple times like me? Let me know so I can cheer you on, and use the #StashEnjoyment2022 tag on Instagram if you'd like to.

<3 Ruth