Spaazlicious left an interesting comment about my Peapod Sweater:
I looked at those pattern yarn requirements. Looked at the baby. Looked at the pattern yarn requirements. And said, “No freakin’ way it takes that much yarn for that.” I’m a smug bastard to see your experience bearing that out.
I’ve been noticing that lately though–my bicolor cardi from Annie Modesitt took just over half of the yarn “required.” I know that patterns are made to sell yarn, but it seems a little much, especially most people buy extra over the stated requirements for “just in case.” Just making me think.
And here I thought it was just me. I always seem to use wa-a-ay less yarn than a pattern calls for. With a few exceptions.
I discovered early on that I almost always ran short of yarn on Dale of Norway designs. A long time ago I emailed their customer service about this and received a nice response. Apparently, they knit up each design in one size, and then guess-timate how much yarn the other sizes will take based on the yarn requirements for the one size knitted. Not an unreasonable way of doing things, but methinks their guess-timator needs a fine tuning.
Disclaimer here — I haven’t made a Dale sweater in quite a while so I don’t know if the yarn amounts for their patterns are more realistic these days.
I’ve noticed that some Starmore designs I’ve made were skimpy on yarn requirements. I’ve run short on a couple of fair isles and on one cabled design. Not by much, though. And I’ve always had plenty of yarn in the kits I’ve received from them at Virtual Yarns.
But most of the time I have yarn left over. I do tend to buy a “just in case” extra skein, but I’ll often have a couple of skeins left over.
The smallest size of the Peapod Jacket called for 4 skeins of Debbie Bliss Cotton Cashmere, and I made mine using three skeins, with about a quarter of the third skein left over. But I do think I (for whatever reason) tend to use less yarn to knit something than others. I wonder why that is? That has puzzled me from time to time — how is it that two knitters who knit to the same gauge will use varying amounts of yarn to complete the exact same amount of knitting?
I think that if I were the designer and had knitted the Peapod using the 2.75 skeins, I would list the yarn requirement as 4 skeins. I could see someone knitting it and needing just slightly more than 3 skeins.
And in the interests of full disclosure, I do this for my own patterns — I do pad the yarn requirements slightly to try to guard against anyone running out of yarn. I generally up the yarn requirements by 50 – 100 yards. I’m not trying to push a particular yarn — it’s not like I make any money off that. I just really, really hate running out of yarn and know that others do too!
What do you all think? Should designers do this? Do you think most designers do?
Speaking of design, katomliz asked:
I checked your sweater software program .Looks helpful. I see they have software for socks too. Have you your used that one?
You know, I think I do have a copy of the Sock Wizard software. I believe I bought it a few years ago when I first embarked on sock knitting. Used it to do my first pair of socks. A nice little program, if I remember correctly. Check out the link to read all about it. There’s a demo there you can download.
Slowly it grows, millimeter by millimeter.
This is the start of the back. I’m doing a seed stitch border. I do so love seed stitch! And miles of stockinette. Yawn. But . . .
Ooh, Look! A Giveaway!
Wanna win some sock yarn? Send an email to: blogcontestATcomcastDOTnet by noon (Eastern time), Sunday, October 15, 2006 to be entered in a drawing for some sock yarn.
I’ve got some sock yarn that I discovered when cleaning out my stash room (ahem) that was overlooked in the Great Sock Yarn Giveaway of ’06. Since October is clearly sock month (Socktoberfest! / Sock Hop!) it seems like a good idea to give some away. I’ll send enough yarn for a pair of socks to six lucky contestants, drawn at random.
So send an email to the address above. That’s all you need to do — just send me an email. Sock-knitters outside the U.S. are welcome to enter too.
P.S. to Liz — That’s not linoleum in my kitchen — it’s Armstrong floor tiles circa 1999 that I had put down to replace a truly heinous one-piece sheet of vinyl flooring! Does the fact that I like it and chose it make me retro? My appliances are beige and black — honest!