Do you know how much yarn you have in your stash? Maybe that's a good place to start! Knowing how much you have, and of what, can definitely help to curb your spending.
For one thing, you won't re-buy yarn which you already have, but forgot about. For another thing, having your entire yarn stash available at your fingertips (computer-ly speaking) helps you understand how much yarn you really have.
I know that my spending dropped considerably once I took a full inventory of my yarn stash, and committed to keeping it updated on Ravelry. If you enter your yarn on Ravelry, you can click on the small green spreadsheet icon on your Stash page to download your inventory in Excel format. This is a great way to track your yarn - and just sum up the "Total Yards" column to get a quick and easy total number of yards in your stash.
Some possible goals:
- Cull a certain percentage of your stash and find it another home. Donate it to charity, give it to a friend, sell it online, or swap it for something you like better.
- Reduce a certain type of yarn by a certain amount. For example, my goal is to knit up at least 10 skeins of sock yarn next year to work through my sock yarn stash.
- Gather and store your yarn properly. Respect the stash! Don't just keep it crammed in shopping bags at the back of your closet!
Every year I like to pick an ambitious project to attempt. Maybe this is the year you finally knit yourself a lace shawl, or work an entire afghan, or learn how to graft stitches with Kitchener stitch. Think big! Push yourself!
- If you find yourself thinking "Oh I could never knit that," make a note to do just that!
- Pick a technique you've found off-putting, and choose a project that uses that technique.
- Plan to attend a class or join a knit-a-long, for the added support and help.
A lot of knitters make UFO plans for the year. How many unfinished objects do you have on hand? Every year I have a mad scramble to knit up all my UFOs. I have this idea that the new year will start right, if only I can finish all my languishing projects. It never happens, but it's a good thought nevertheless.
I tend to be a project monogamist, but some of my UFO-heavy friends have been picking specific projects to finish in 2011, or choosing goals like "one UFO finished per month."
Remember that the definition of "finish" is a vague one, when it comes to knitting. Ripping back and using the yarn for another project counts. As does binding off where you are and calling it done. Maybe that unfinished sweater is really a shrug in disguise. Maybe that scarf would work just as well as a cowl. Be creative!