Sunday, February 13, 2011

Yarn Snob

Written on January 20, 2011
Yarn Snob
So I used to be a yarn snob.  I also used to be a ‘non-knitter’ but that has obviously changed.  When I was a kid I learned how to crochet.  At that time I only had access to yarn at Wal-Mart.  I lived in the world of Redheart acrylic.  Once I became a knitter, I became a yarn snob.  Anything that was 50% acrylic or more I would turn my nose up at.  Shortly after learning to knit I got into felting.  I decided that if I made a mistake, felting my project would be the best way to hide mistakes.  At 100% wool, Lambs Pride’s stock went up because I made myself two new belts, a few purses, and several small felted bags that were supposed to be purses (that I don’t know what I’ll do with now).  I noticed that all the good looking knit projects in magazines were done in wool, or silk, or bamboo.  Soon I was living my life looking through ‘fancy yarn’ colored glasses.  Not even a year into my new life as a knitter, I decided to make a baby blanket.  I found a pattern that used this hand painted yarn, sock yarn, with two strings held together.  It looked so cool!  I went to my LYS, looked around for a while (at this time I didn’t realize it was sock yarn I was looking for, just shows you how well I read directions before starting a project).  I asked the owner about the yarn and she took me right to it.  $25 per hank.  I needed 16, that’s SIXTEEN hanks.  Woolly Shit!  Needless to say, I didn’t make that blanket.  But I did have my mom teach me the pattern for her Broomstick Lace baby blankets.
She taught me how to make them over the phone.  I had a HUGE knitting needle; 35mm, and a size J crochet hook.  Now all I needed was yarn.  She said the words “Redheart Super Saver” and my excitement diminished just a bit.  But I didn’t give up, no way, José.   So off to Hobby Lobby I went, there I found super soft 100% acrylic yarn.  Who knew there was acrylic that was amazingly soft!  It wasn’t Redheart but it was the same ply and weight.  Apparently the yarn Gods decided to change how they made acrylic yarn since the 80s’ because I found lots of soft, fun colored, amazing yarn.  Some of it was even made out of recycled pop bottles, how cool is that?  The mom to be didn’t know if they were having a boy or a girl but she did tell me that they were decorating everything yellow.  So the yarn I purchased was a light lemony color.  I think I spent a total of $45 dollars.  That included four huge skeins of yarn, the largest knitting needle I could find, and a crochet hook.  After I finished that blanket, I was over my hatred of acrylic yarn.  However, to this day I detest light lemony yellow colored yarn. 
Now, most acrylic yarn still looks cheap to me.  But the quality of the yarn is amazing.  For baby blankets, it’s perfect.  It’s durable, washable, and super long lasting.  And I’m finding more and more projects that I like that are made with acrylic yarns.  My latest “have to get a subscription to this” magazine is Knitting Today.  This version of the magazine has only been out for three or four months but in each issue there are some projects made with cheaper yarn and some projects made with middle of the road yarn and some that are of high end yarn.  That makes me happy.  Don’t get me wrong, I like looking (looking being the key word here) at overly glossy super model types wearing the latest trendy knitted thing practicing bedroom eyes.  But, that knitted trendy thing won’t look good on my anti-model body type.  So here’s my big shot out to Knitting Today. . Thanks for keeping me in budget!