The Room Itself

There have been several times in the last few days, the days since the stashroom got finished, that I’ve wondered if it’s really finished.  I wish I had a little table and chair to go in front of the window, I wish all the shelving units were the same size, I wish I had more pretty boxes and bins. I wish that I could have pulled up the linoleum that some nutjob put over the old pine floors.  I wish – in short, that the budget for this overhaul had been unlimited, or even bigger, but despite all these things, and despite the fact that this is sure to be the most disappointing reveal of all time, I love this little room.

I love the colour of it, this celery green that goes with the rest of the house so beautifully.  It was a can of paint we had in the basement from a paint store error last year, and I kept it, thinking it would come in handy someday.  It did, and I love how updated and fresh it looks, while still not seeming at all out of place in this little old house.  

I had one big old Ikea storage thing.  Tall, white, the ones that have storage squares in them, and that was the start of the whole storage plan.  I didn’t want to have to get rid of something good (and it reminds me of a yarn shop) so that went into the room and I tried to match everything else to it.  That didn’t go very well, since that piece is sadly discontinued at Ikea, but I got one very much like it for a song, and so that went in next.  

One of the things I hated about this room before (other than the fact that it was a pit) was that I found it really hard to store spinning fibres.  I keep all my yarn and fibres in ziplocks (partly for to keep them dust free and partly as protection against incursion) and that means attempts to store them on shelves resulted in a lot of fibre avalanches.  All storage attempts were hopelessly tenuous. (This did, however, create the charming effect of yarns or fibres periodically leaping off the shelf at you when you were in there, as though they were volunteering for service.)  I got around that by buying some pretty green boxes, and some neat white nylon storage bins that fold flat when you’re not using them.  (I expect I shall never fold them flat again, but they would if I wanted them too.

Magazine holders were bought, though I had some before, so things are a little mismatched, but the budget was tight and I couldn’t justify pitching them because they had the audacity to be plain cardboard instead of tidy white, so they stayed.  The important thing is that they now contain magazines, more or less in order.  Step two is to label the boxes and further organize, but that’s a mission for another day.  

I bought three white bookcases with adjustable shelves for all the books, and that was my main expense.  ($69 each.) I love books and objects mixed together on shelves, and making little pictures of what goes together pleases me to no end – fabric next to a jar full of ribbon next to my sewing books…

Jars of roving standing prettily next to the yarn books, just for inspiration, all my lace books on one shelf, all the sock books standing together.. a wee tin that holds a few buttons sitting between the books…

and a whole basket just for knitting beads and pins and nonsuch.

It’s enough to make a knitter think that she could find what she was looking for in a pinch.  The tall case got the upstairs yarn – including a whole bin just of mitten yarns, and the second case holds spinning fibre, with big bins atop the whole thing for fleeces.

It is not perfect, but I love it- and it makes everyone (especially me) feel calm and happy to see the fresh little room full of yarn and books.  Even the new white curtains (replacing spectacularly horrific old navy ones) make the room seem brighter, cleaner and … well.  Saner, which is a top priority if you’re putting that much knitting related stuff in a room, since it tends to be poorly understood in general.

I especially enjoy how this room look at night.  Until now there’s been no light in that room – making yarn re-con a strictly daylight manoeuvre, unless you went in with a flashlight, which I am not at all ashamed to say I’ve done.  Now there’s a little light atop one of the bookcases, and when I come up over the stairs and go down the hall, the wee cozy room with most of my favourite things in it glows at me, inviting me in to have a visit.

Costs of my glorified closet? Paint – free. Labour – sweat. Storage $340 (including the bins) Sense of calm and the ability to find yarn and a Vogue winter 2007 in five minutes flat without needing a shovel and to notify the RCMP that you’re going in?