These are totally my thoughts on yarn and said thoughts may be influenced by the fact that yarn has overtaken every square inch of storage space I have. Maybe it’s like boiled crawfish. When we get the first tray of the season, I want them every day . . breakfast, lunch and dinner. After a few trays, day after day, I’m thinking . . these may not be as good as I remember them being.
While I don’t want my yarn thoughts to influence anyone else, it’s just something to think about.
I do try to support “local” yarn shops. There are no shops near me that carry the types of yarns I use. We do now have Hobby Lobby. There are a couple of shops within two or three hours of me and I’ve ordered yarns from them but there’s nothing like going online to places like Eat, Sleep, Knit or The Loopy Ewe, where they have a huge selection of yarns and I can find pretty much any content, color, weight yarn I want, as well as a variety of colors of each yarn. Both of these shops have “games” and competitions ongoing that make the knitting lots of fun and a bit competitive if you want to compete. Both have ways to “win” by using stash yarn purchased from their shops but quicker ways to win by purchasing new yarn. I’ll be on the slow path to winning in 2019 . . if I compete at all. I do find that I end up knitting things I may not normally knit, just in order to gain stars or points. I did much better last year with knitting only things I really wanted to knit and I anticipate doing even better in 2019.
BUT, with the retirement budget, IF I need yarn, I’m going to have to be a bit more frugal with my shopping.
There are many patterns popular now where a mohair/silk lace is carried along with another yarn. Here’s an example of what you can find when checking around a bit:
Online shop #1 – Shibui Silk Cloud 60% kid mohair/40% silk/330 yards/25 grams – $24/skein
Online shop #2 – Rowan Kid Silk 70% kid mohair/30% silk/225 yards/25 grams – $11.21/skein
Online shop #3 – Rowan Kid Silk 70% kid mohair/30% silk/225 yards/25 grams – $8.37/yard.
The Shibui Silk Cloud has 105 more yards, which is substantial, but it is also thinner. I think with any of the patterns, the Shibui or Rowan could be used interchangeably.
If the pattern calls for 1,500 yards, you will need 5 skeins of the Shibui and 7 skeins of the Rowan. That would be $120 for the Shibui or $58.59 from Shop #3. Huge difference!
Also, I’ve found that the super soft, feels wonderful next to the skin merino just isn’t holding up as well as I’d like, especially for sweaters and things that get more use. It’s great for shawls – where there aren’t heavy wear areas.
When I began looking for yarns that work great for colorwork, I came across several European yarns. While they aren’t “oh so soft”, they aren’t scratchy enough to bother me and they’re a fraction of what I’ve been paying for indie dyed merino yarns.
So, all this to say, my preferences in yarns have changed. I will work from the stash but I will be more selective. I will use merino for shawls. I will use merino blends for socks but for sweaters, anything I order in the future will be a yarn that holds up better than some of the yarns I’ve been using.