From Wellington with love: For the Love of Stash

Posted by Karen King on

A skein of yarn has limits of specific weight and length. However, these do little to limit the skein's power to inspire possibility and enable creativity. So it follows that a stash of many, many, many skeins is a powerful force indeed. Right?

I recently moved to the other side of the world, longitudinally and latitudinally. Lock, stock, and two yapping doggies.

Karen's house in Wellington New Zealand

In the 15 or so years prior to this mega-transition I lived in Berkeley and worked in 4 amazing yarn stores in the East Bay. I loved coworkers, customers, and a whole lot of yarn in each one of them. After that, what else could I do but open Avenue Yarns, after coercing the most talented yarn finder ever to work with me.

So, in this big move I'm talking about, I moved a big, big, big stash. (This picture is only a fraction.) I can almost hear your groaning laughter, and I'm usually quick to be, ahem, sheepish, about the size of my stash. And to pay (do not even ask) to ship boxes of yarn around the world?! Crazy, right? But you know what? It's a good thing I did, because its holding me together.

What did I do as the move was planned? Knit like a maniac. What did I do after the movers left? Knit more. What did I do as I lived in an Airbnb waiting for my dogs to proceed through a five-and-a-half-month pre-move international move program. Knit faster. Cast on a few more projects. Sew. During the flight? Knit. Waiting 10 long days for the dogs to be released from quarantine? Knit even more. Crocheted too. And now that we are here, reunited with my husband and settling in? Knit and crochet. And sew too. Revel in reuniting with my stash!

I love that working with yarn provides metaphor for life. Stitch by stitch, row by row, creating something fabulous with needle, hook, loom and a long line of colored string, is the way we live. Breath by breath, moment by moment, creating days, years and life as we go.

Working with yarn kept my hands busy, my brain gently engaged, so that I was able to make the transition. Now that the move has happened, and all my molecules have recollected on the other side of the world, my epically sized stash connects me to people and places and things I love. Maybe most importantly, working with it connects me to who I am. No matter where I am. 

Here's to the stash!

Karen and Charlie in New Zealand 


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4 comments

  • What a beautifully written blog! So happy to hear that you’re settling in and are reunited with your hubby, stash and fur babies! I look forward to your next post! Keep knitting 😊

    Melanie Weat on
  • Such a beautiful piece of writing. I’m so glad you are doing well. Thank you and your amazing store for drawing me into the world of knitting.

    Jenny Kinder on
  • So nice to hear you’re settling in to your life in New Zealand.

    Kira on
  • YEAH!!!! So happy to hear you are safely reunited with your husband, doggies and your stash!!!
    Good Luck in your new home!!!
    Miss you!!!
    Hope to see pictures of your projects on your blog.
    Fondly, XOXO
    Cherene Unrau who just bought yarn with Rebecca’s help and signed up for the Top Down Sock Class (round two)!!! I will learn to knit socks independently eventually!!!

    Cherene Unrau on

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