Eye Spy: Moving, Fiber Frenzies and Paths with Hearts

On moving and minimalism

This past week, I moved to a more “permanent” location. A place where I can finally unpack my yarn stash as well as the rest of my belongings.

Books, tupperware, spices, and knitting needles are all slowly getting stored away in their assigned cupboards, shelves and drawers.

At just over 800 square feet, this is the largest place I’ve had to live in, with just my significant other to share it with. It’s a strange feeling, after living for 11 months with just a backpack (okay, more like two backpacks) stuffed with the everyday essentials, to now have this much storage space. It’s also been creating a bit of controversy in my mind. On the one hand, I would love to continue living my previous ‘backpacker’ lifestyle, whereas on the other hand, I have been developing an ever growing attachment to Costco, where I can buy excessive amounts of chia seeds, avocados, and other necessities to my heart’s content. It’s a blessing in disguise that Costco doesn’t sell yarn, otherwise my bank account would be looking significantly lower than it already does.

I stumbled across this article from Frugaling.org, and I find it sums up quite nicely the direction I would like to, eventually, head for. Here’s a summary of my new commitments to living a more minimalist lifestyle.

  • No more buying new, if it can be found used (in addition to Costco, I’ve also recently developed a love affair with thrift stores).
  • Always asking myself, before buying, if this item is truly necessary and if it will be used within a relatively short amount of time.
  • Using up ‘stockpiles’ of things already owned before going out and purchasing even more ‘unnecessary things’ (my biggest weakness in this one is definitely  my yarn stash).

Thinking back to my brand new sewing machine that was purchased only a few months before it was put into storage, and having barely used it before doing so, I can tell I have a lot to work on.

Fiber Frenzies and WIPs

On the polar opposite side of my desire to become more of a minimalist, is my current obsession with online yarn shopping. Knitpicks.com is my current go-to stop for affordable and good quality yarn, and I have been using it for all of my most recent projects, such as:

  1. Annapurla Hat by yours truly (no pattern released as of yet since I’m not thrilled with how the crown turned out, so will keep working on this one 😉 ). Beaverslide was the perfect wool to use for this project, and now I’m on the hunt to find more wool such as this one.
  2. Colorful Wedges Baby Blanket by Purl Soho (using Knitpicks Billow)
  3. Ramble Shawl by Andrea Mowry (using Cream and Hawk with Knitpicks Gloss DK)
  4. Cadeautje Slippers by Ysolda Teague (using Orca in City Tweed Aran/Hw  and thrums made with Furry Friends Roving ) (no picture for this one as so far it has mainly consisted of making thrums!)

Knitpicks has been a wonderful resource in getting started with knitting, and has been fairly affordable compared to some of the other more ‘luxury’ yarn names out there.

Even still, lately I’ve been becoming more and more interested in finding local, sustainable and affordable yarns to use, as compared to buying from the bigger brands. There will be an upcoming fiber festival in Vancouver Island next month, and I’m so excited to find out the many types of fiber / wool are available right here on the Island (expect more on this subject in an upcoming post)!

Paths with hearts

Finally, I’ve been absorbed in reading The Tao of Physics, and was particularly inspired by the opening quote in the book, which I will leave you with to ponder.

“Any path is only a path, and there is no affront, to oneself or to others, in dropping it if that is what your heart tells you … Look at every path closely and deliberately. Try it as many times as you think necessary. Then ask yourself, and yourself alone, one question … Does this path have a heart? If it does, the path is good; if it doesn’t it is of no use.”

— Carlos Castaneda, The Teachings of Don Juan.