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I was doing a little tidying of my workshop, just clearing out the area under the stairs today.  Wow.  Isn’t it amazing just how much stuff we accumulate?!

It got me seriously alarmed as I pulled things out and took them outside so i could sort them into piles of keep, recycle, sell, and throw.  The more I worked through the pile, the more stuff found itself on the throw pile.  It just kept coming!!

I stopped for a cup of tea and started looking round my studio, wondering if I ever had to relocate, what would I do with everything?

It’s a known truism (not sure that it’s a fact) that we accumulate stuff to fill all the available space.  Well, in my case, that is so true!  And what a worry…

My Dad is in the throes of clearing out the house that he shared with my mum for over 35 years, in preparation for moving north to be with his second wife.  Both Mum and Dad were hoarders – a product of being brought up in the war years when you grabbed anything that came on the market quickly before it disappeared.  That I understand. The job is going to take him the best part of a year at least.

I had never thought of myself as a hoarder – not an dyed-in-the-wool hoarder, anyway – until today when I looked around and really looked at my stuff. Most of us fibrey people collect things and are given things, and we are so hesitant to pass them on or get rid of them.  Having been weaving for 20 years this year, I have a 20-year hoard!  Yikes.

So right now, I am contemplating what I really need.  What do my students really need?  Can I simplify things and pare my stuff down over the next few months?  I like to use stash anyway, so that’s not really a problem until I go somewhere like the Handweavers’ Studio!!  Like many of you, I probably have enough yarn to stock a small shop!

I find this kind of scenario can be very stimulating.  It gets you to focus on what’s important in your life and to clear away the excess baggage that seems to pile up so easily.  For instance, I have a cold mangle that I bought ages ago and have used once!  Why am I hanging on to it?  Does anyone in the UK want a good old-fashioned cold mangle?

Oh yes, and there’s an industrial jacquard power-loom too…..  Buyer collects!! (And bring a low-loader!) LOL