Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Knitting snobbery

No, not by me...I'm not exactly a knitting snob. I mean, I won't knit with acrylic - unless it was some baby novelty type item, like, oh, I don't know - a stuffed animal or something. But other than that, I'm not above inexpensive wool or last season's yarns or whatever. I live in the same borough as Smileys, for pete's sake! And I have bought my share from them - including the Panda Woolbale I'm using for the bog, and that was only $1.99 a ball, and I must say, its a perfectly satisfactory yarn. And the way the bog eats up yarn, a smart choice, too.

But the knitting snobbery thing - what has set me off is the darling summery cardigan wrappy thing by Michael Kors in the spring issue of VK. Love it, its great, super cute, easy to wear, just what you need for going into air conditioned offices and restaurants and things. But the yarn that it is knitted in - Posh, by Classic Elite - is $33 a skein! At that price, that "darling summery cardigan wrappy thing" comes out to about $340! Now I have to say, people who have that kind of scratch to throw around on a cardigan wrappy thing that is far from an heirloom piece (in style, I mean - come on, no one will be wearing this kind of thing next summer) will just go out and buy the damn thing anyway! Am I right? Hey, $340 is a drop in the bucket to Michael Kors but to me, thats like four sweaters. Four good sweaters.

Of course, substituting the yarn is straightforward enough and I'm not suggesting that I won't knit it because I can't afford to spend that kind of money on a single project. Its the principle of publishing such a design in that yarn and the assumption that designing $340 sweater patterns is acceptable.

So boo to yarn snobbery perpetrated by publications and designers who don't take into account the thrifty nature of knitters (who, I might add, might drop that kind of dough for a fabulous hand dyed cashmere, but then it would be hand dyed, and really interesting, and would no doubt be made into a sensible, eternally wearable cardigan or pullover).

Alright, well, enough ranting. The funny thing is I need a lightweight project to knit while I wait in line at the DMV, which is going to happen one day soon (a long, not funny story, involving jury duty, not having ever changed my old drivers license to NY, and waiting for still more verification so I can go to the DMV and probably be told I still don't have enough documentation. But I digress.). Okay, so socks are the obvious choice. But I only have one ball of sock yarn at home and I'm not feeling it. I bought some Classic Elite Vintage from WEBS a while ago, falling in love with the gray colorway. Not a common yarn color, and one that I love to wear. So I decided to make a summery t-shirty shell type thing. So I went to the Classic Elite website, and found a pattern like what I was looking for, and what do you know - its knit in Posh! So their pattern for this cute little summer shell takes 5-6 skeins of Posh, making this little project a mere $198! Well, Classic Elite, I am knitting it in Vintage. I'll let you know how it turns out.

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