Why I don’t like to shop at yarn stores

I read a blog entry a while back about why that knitter liked to shop at yarn stores, and she was asking her readers why they didn’t feel the same (if they didn’t). I didn’t comment, because I didn’t want to just rattle off all the different times I’d been insulted, ignored, and confused at yarn stores (even though that certainly plays a part). I needed to think about it more and stew it over.

And it comes down to this: I have no self control. πŸ™‚ And I don’t often have the confidence to stick up for what I do or don’t like (or think will or will not work) and I end up being persuaded to buy whatever it is they think I should buy.

Case in point: I recently wanted to knit myself another sweater for camping – it was originally going to be loosely based on this sweater:

I picked this up at Goodwill a few years ago and I just LOVE it. I love the fit (not too crazy about the colors – I was originally thinking of making a new one in dark grey and purple), but the neck is too tight and scratchy. So I was basically going to copy the fit of this sweater and knit up a new one in different colors. So I went to a yarn store a couple months ago that was just HAPPENING to have a sale that weekend (woohoo!) an after talking to the sales woman about how I wanted a bulky yarn that was not scratchy AND not pilly, she showed me some Cascade Pastaza (that was on sale…), and I thought maybe getting a variegated yarn would allow me to play with color without having to do any fancy fair isle? Anyway, I walked away with 7 skeins of this:

Now, I know it wasn’t her fault that I bought yarn in colors that were VASTLY different than what I was originally looking for, and I know that she was truly trying to help me find something warm and cozy, and I know she didn’t know it was going to pool like it did… But I knew as soon as I bought it that I probably shouldn’t buy a variegated yarn (at least not a yarn with THIS MUCH variegation?) for a sweater. And when I knit up a swatch over the weekend, I fount out I was right.

The pooling is killing me. So now I have to figure out a way to unload this yarn and also decide on a new yarn. But that’s the beauty of shopping for yarn on the internet… You can browse Flickr or Google or Ravelry and see what yarn other people have used and how it knits up and really get a sense of what the finished product will look like, instead of having to try and gauge from a 4″x4″ knitted swatch. And then you know that all mishaps are yours, and yours alone. πŸ™‚

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5 Responses to Why I don’t like to shop at yarn stores

  1. kelp! says:

    Oooh, that is the suck! One thing you could try before you kick the yarn to the curb – alternate balls every two rows. It really helps with the pooling!

    On the other hand, another good thing about Ravelry is that you can mark a yarn for sale or trade and people will randomly contact you about acquiring it. Zero effort destashing!

  2. katy says:

    pretty yarn, but that pooling looks like eyeballs! it’s kind of creepy.
    i like your yoke sweater, i have one like it that i wear when it’s really cold. i have sort of an obsession with knitting a yoke sweater too. i keep queueing them but so far i have yet to knit one.

  3. Nora says:

    Oh, goodness! Have you tried a different stitch count [say, more sts] or larger [smaller] needles?

  4. michelle says:

    That yarn is just not going to get you the sweater you want. It’s not scratchy?! It looks scratchy! Warm, non-scratchy yarn… Malabrigo? πŸ™‚

  5. Dad says:

    You don’t stick up for yourself? Just pretend you’re talking to your brother or me. That worked when you were living with us.

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