Monday, January 4, 2016

nothing new here

I hope the first week of 2016 is going well for you! Did you make resolutions? Are you sticking to them? Odds are good if you did, you still are at this point. ;-) I've been thinking a lot about what I want 2016 (and forward) to look like. There are some definite changes, but a lot more of what I've already been doing too... just stepped up a bit.

I love challenging myself. Last year, I swore off buying yarn again in favor of using my stash. I love knitting and weaving, but I have a yarn stash and I certainly don't need more coming in. Even after a couple years of intentionally not buying (and selling and donating too), I have plenty to choose from when the creative bug bites. The only new skeins that entered my stash last year were either ones I handspun myself (4 1/4 pounds worth) or bought secondhand (only 2!). This is my eventual goal for my stash. With the new (to me) loom (see my last post), I plan to make a large dent in my commercial yarn stash this year and be well on my way to an only handmade/secondhand craft stash!

I also spent time last year sorting through everything I own and keeping only what I love and truly use. I think the guys at the Goodwill drop off started to recognize me. I've found the less I own, the less I need and definitely, the less I want. The house lost a lot of clutter last year and I don't miss a thing.

So what's in store for 2016? Nothing new. Literally. These days, it's hard not to be aware of the impact our shopping habits have on the world, both environmentally and socially. I've been making more effort to lighten my own impact, but I know I can do more. So my new challenge for myself? Not buying new. Manufacturing new products uses resources that are quickly running out while many pre-owned items that still have a lot of life in them make their way into our landfills. Buying secondhand, I'll also be avoiding all the packaging and yes, saving some cash along the way as well. :-) This still leaves me plenty of options for finding the things I need - Freecycle, Craigslist, bartering, borrowing or at times, realizing I just don't need that thing after all. I discovered there's a whole group of people making this same choice for various reasons and lengths of time. Check out The Compact article on TreeHugger. There's also The Compact Yahoo! group. I do have a couple of caveats: home/car repairs (pretty sure I need a new car battery this week), sewing needles/thread (can't buy used) and a new pair of walking shoes before it warms up enough to resume our daily doggie walks. I'm also working to reduce my waste connected to food, but more about that later. I made my final new item purchase on December 31st. It'll be interesting to see just how long I can make it before buying new!


  1. What a great idea!

    FWIW, Ive never bought a new sewing needle; they tend to breed in my house, and once people know you sew, you tend to get free thread, too.

    1. I'll definitely be trying to find used everything first, but sewing machine needles? Unless I find someone has donated them, I'm not holding my breath. I'll be keeping my eyes open at the thrift stores though!

  2. Let me know what kind of sewing machine; I'd be happy to donate to the cause! :) I have a tin of new sewing machine needles... I'll never have to buy them again. I can surely share!


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