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How to safely store yarn

Posted by Allison Barnes on
How to safely store yarn

Once you start collecting beautiful yarns faster than you can turn them into finished projects, storing your yarn becomes a more important consideration. In addition to convenience, you’ll want to make sure the way you’re storing them will keep them looking as beautiful and soft as when you first got them!

Here are four key considerations when storing your yarn:

  1. Resist winding it into a ball
    If you like to knit or crochet with a wound ball of yarn, resist winding until you’re ready to start your project and leave it in a skein. When yarn is wound into a ball, the uneven pressure and tension caused by the compression on the inside of the ball causes the yarn to develop stretched out and thinner sections.
  2. Say no to plastic
    Let your yarn breathe! Keeping yarns in plastic or unbreathable packaging can lead to mildewing and other unpleasant things. Some fibres can hold up to 30% of its weight in moisture before feeling wet or damp. If you’re looking for the convenience of bags to keep your yarn sorted, consider canvas or mesh.
  3. Avoid the sun
    Make like a vampire and stay out of direct sunlight! Over time, direct sunlight can cause colours to fade and fibres to lose some of their strength.
  4. Skip the mothballs!
    If you’re concerned about moths, opt for a lavender sachet. The chemicals in mothballs are appealing to small children and pets who are drawn to them for their sweet taste and they’re also likely carcinogenic. Plus, they are most effective in an airtight container  (non-plastic because the chemicals can cause the plastic to melt into your beautiful yarns) and their smell lingers in the fibres.

Once you figure out how you’re going to store your yarns, figuring out a way to keep track of your collection is the next step to creating an amazing curated yarn collection. A great tool that I’ve been exploring more is Ravelry -- you can read my recent post about how to utilize their Stash function here to learn about how you can take your yarn storage up a notch.

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