Can you have minimalism in knitting?

As part of my decluttering spree my mind has turned towards my knitting (it doesn’t take much!) and whether it is possible to have a minimalist knitting life. Collecting is a large part of any hobby and with so many amazing yarns, needles and notions out there the possibilities for expanding our collections are endless.

Minimalism is not about having less.

It’s about making room for more of what matters.

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Don’t worry, I’m not hear to tell you that in order to have a minimalist knitting life you must throw everything away and stop buying things. To me minimalism is not necessarily about having less but about prioritising the things that bring me happiness. It’s not about depriving myself of things, it’s about making more room for the things I love by reducing the things I don’t. Put simply, it’s all about being happier with what you have.

I enjoy buying nice yarn and project bags as much as the next person and if you can afford it, have space to store it and it brings you joy then crack on my friend! I’m simply looking at being more intentional with my purchases going forwards, whilst also looking at the things I already have and seeing whether I can make better use of my limited space by streamlining my supplies.

I have a large plastic box for storing my yarn and have already agreed with myself that I won’t buy anything that I don’t love and in a weight that I know I won’t use. I’m already shopping from my collection when the box gets too full, as well as finding projects to use up those yarn weights that I no longer love, such as in my Home Sweet Home cardigan by Tina Tse Knits. My intention is to curate a collection of yarns that will act as a savings account; putting in yarn when I can afford to and saving it for a rainy day. That doesn’t mean that I am going to hold on to them forever, I’m a firm believer in setting those special skeins free. I bought them because I loved them and will get so much more pleasure from them by knitting with and wearing them, than I would if they remained sat in the box.

While I may be fairly on top of my yarn game, my needles and notions are starting to get a bit unruly. When I got back in to knitting I increased my collection of straight needles as this is what I had used in the past, but it wasn’t long before a whole new world opened up and my straight needles now sit unused in favour of my interchangeable circulars. I now have a couple of interchangeable sets; my Knit Pro Symfonies which I don’t find very smooth to use but does include a nice range of larger sizes, as well as a set of Hiya Hiya Sharps that I ‘upgraded’ to and use regularly. While these two sets don’t take up much room, I still have all my straight needles and fixed circulars that no longer see the light of day, along with my Grandma’s collection of needles that I received after she passed away. These are much more difficult to deal with due to the sentimental value and memories attached to them, but I do keep going through them and filtering out the ones that are bent, lonely or that I have multiples of. My aim is to get down to one box of needles, the ones that have the most meaning for me, hopefully in a variety of sizes. Up to now I’ve done very well to quieten the voice that tells me not to throw things away in case I may need them one day, but this time I can’t seem to shake it so am going to trust my instincts.

There is no question that I get a tremendous amount of joy from knitting. It keeps me connected to people I have now lost, it helps me to navigate difficult times and it brings me a daily sense of peace and calm. For these reasons I will always be adding things to my collection, I will simply be doing so with more intention going forward so that it can continue to bring me happiness long in to the future.

What are your most treasured pieces? What in your collection would you not want to be without?

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