View Full Version : What do you who live kinda far from a LYS do?

04-21-2011, 09:54 PM
I've been worried about where I will buy yarn given that I now live nowhere near a LYS (When I lived in Vancouver, I was a 15 minute bike ride from the nearest LYS.)

I do not drive and the public transit system here sucks compared to Vancouver (I was spoiled there...) DH and I are committed to driving as little as possible A. due to fuel costs and B. it's crappy for the environment and C. DH HATES driving and complains incessantly if he has to drive too much (more than once a week usually hahah.) He works from home, eh?

I'm wondering what you knitting "homies" that are kind of in my quandary do to acquire more stash?!?! I don't have a credit card, either, which further complicates things, eh?

04-21-2011, 10:37 PM
I have an LYS, but they only carry one brand, so in some ways, some of the time, it's like not having an LYS. If I ever want something NOT Cascade, I order online.

A lot of places take paypal for payment. You might be able to set up a paypal account so your payments can come straight out of the bank since you don't have a credit card (or, I assume, debit.)

There's always a risk online with the color not being quite what you expect and touching yarn before you buy is always nice, but we do what we have to, don't we?

I hope you find a solution that works for you.

04-21-2011, 11:07 PM
Some online shops will take paypal which can be set up to pay out of your checking account. Ravelry and ebay do this, you can find name brand yarns in ravelry stashes.

04-21-2011, 11:33 PM
My only places to buy yarn are Walmart, JoAnn.s and Michaels. Michaels has drasticaly cut down the amount of yarn they have for sale. If I want good quality yarn I have to buy online.

04-22-2011, 01:49 AM
You can get one of those prepaid debit cards. My son bought one for $5 at Walgreen's and preloaded it with funds so he can buy online. You can get the same card for free at Greendot.com. There's also a prepaid card at rushcard.com. You can get your paychecks direct deposited at Rushcard and you never have to go to the bank. You'll pay a one time fee. When the card expires, they automatically send you another one. Russell Simmons, the king of hip hop, started the company just for people like you with no credit cards and for low income people to allow them to buy online and not have to worry about stolen checks in the mail. This is a debit, not credit, card so you can't go over and get in financial trouble.

As for yarn, you can make one big trip and stock up for a while. I don't know what type of yarn you like. Last fall, I bought five different colors of acrylic Caron One Pound yarn for around $40. I made hats and gloves for my adult sons and their roommates, plus charity mittens. I'm still using that yarn and just now coming to the end of it. They come in solid colors. What I like is the 10 ounce multicolor skeins at the end of this page. These multicolor skeins match every One Pound color they have. I've gotten so many compliments on the things I've knitted with the Jetstream multicolor 10 ounce. The colors are gorgeous.

04-22-2011, 07:30 AM
Well, there's no substitute for touching and feeling, but I have found some yarns I like a lot (some Knitpicks yarns, and always Cascade) and you can get good prices online. I've been doing more of that anyway, though I do hit the LYS (30 miles away) every now and then to support them.

Jan in CA
04-22-2011, 01:43 PM
As far as I know these stores all take PayPal -
Elann (http://www.elann.com/Commerce.Web/)
Little Knits (http://www.littleknits.com/)
Webs (http://www.yarn.com/index.cfm)

04-23-2011, 12:34 AM
I shop on-line, Mum gives me yarn from my Aunt that lives in London,Great Britain and I visit hubby in Vancouver. It is always good to smell a yarn store.....:cheering:

04-23-2011, 04:47 PM
So I went to Fail*mart and Michael's today (we have a Michael's two miles from here.) Waste of time, pretty much. I want like nice yarn, fingering weight and such (KWIM? the kind of yarn that can be had in a LYS.) I checked several LYS websites, poking around Ravelry, too:

I need to be able to order via the website, not email/phone for stuff (just a preference eh?) also, I despise paying shipping unless I'm buying from a regular person. Yes, knitpicks has the "buy $50 worth of stuff, free shipping" which is awesome, but I don't always have $50 to spend (I WISH!!!)

I'm seriously starting to freak out!! seems like the nearest LYS is in Arvada, I asked DH if that's kinda close to us "no."


I also sent a Stash 911 email to my mom, see what she can do (she's an enabler, I have a 'retarded' amount of cotton yarn because of her LOL.)

04-23-2011, 05:12 PM
Check the Colorado ravelry groups, click on this link (http://www.ravelry.com/groups/browse/location) and enter your zipcode, that will find groups who meet near you and would have some threads on LYS that may be of some help.

And I think Arvada's only about 10 miles away from you. There's a few others in the North Denver area within 20 miles. I know that can take forever on the freeways to pop in often, but it's really not that far for an outing.

Jan in CA
04-23-2011, 06:16 PM
Free shipping? In this day and age..good luck with that. You may have to just do it and make it worth while once in a while. Check the shipping rates and average the cost over how much yarn you're buying. It often isn't that bad since you're getting the yarn cheaper over the internet than in a store anyway. The sites I linked to all have good prices on yarn.

I hope your mom can send you a care package. :thumbsup:

04-23-2011, 11:50 PM
Even though I live walking distance from a great LYS, I purchase most of my yarn online. I give my two LYS's good business, but not all of my businesses.

04-24-2011, 01:32 PM
I noticed sometimes you can only buy hanks...another reason I prefer brick-and-mortar LYSes is they will make a hank you buy "knit-friendly" KWIM?

Knitpicks sent me a hank (didn't wind it for me) and it's sitting in a box, consequently.

I did buy a winder from KP, but then found out I need a swift and those are waaaaaaaaay too much $ for me. :(

Jan in CA
04-24-2011, 01:42 PM
Knitpicks sent me a hank (didn't wind it for me) and it's sitting in a box, consequently.

Wind it yourself. I do it all the time. I make nice center pull balls. I start by wrapping the yarn around 2 fingers though and then wrapping it over my thumb or fingers. Works the same way really. Just do it sorta loosely. You don't want to stretch your yarn.


04-24-2011, 04:48 PM
Yep, you don't need either a swift or winder. I open up the hanks and loop it over the couch arm, my knees or you can use the back of a kitchen/dining type chair. Then wind it by hand as in the video Jan linked to.

If you bought a lot of these kinds of skeins it might be a hassle to do it yourself, but for one or 2 every once in a while, it's something to do while you watch tv.

04-24-2011, 09:33 PM
www.happyknits.com takes paypal and above a certain amount they offer free shipping.

I know you can also e-mail them (info@happyknits.com) as soon as you place your order and they will wind it up for you... although that does make it ineligible for exchange.

04-25-2011, 10:14 AM
So my DH has agreed to take me to a not-so-local yarn store in the next few weeks. YAY

04-25-2011, 12:03 PM
I use a debit card and order online about twice a month. I order from Knitpicks, Webbs, Yarnmarket and elann. I have had only a few minor problems (wrong yarn sent)and they have always been resolved quickly. My latest order is from Webbs for 13 skeins of Noro Shirabaka.

04-25-2011, 03:26 PM

I found this place online that has free shipping. It's in the UK. Have gotten some sock yarn from them which I have been very happy with. Was extremely pleased with the shipping time! Only took a week to get to me in TX! I'll definitely order from them again.

04-27-2011, 11:07 AM
How about scavenging the local thrift and Goodwill stores for old sweaters from which you can recycle the yarn?

I live about an hour away from stores with any variety of yarn (and their yarns are fairly low quality--and very expensive), so I'm thinking I will hit some thrift stores and see what I can find in the way of old sweaters.

There are some great how-to articles on line about "how to unravel a sweater" (just use the words in quotes as your search term).

04-28-2011, 09:53 AM
I did buy a winder from KP, but then found out I need a swift and those are waaaaaaaaay too much $ for me. :(

DH made this swift for me a few years ago - I love it.
http://www.craftydiversions.com/patterns/homemade_yarn_swift.htm It was not difficult or complicated at all, I could have made it myself easily.

Google around, there are instructions for others as well.

05-01-2011, 12:24 PM
If you have a checking account you can get a debit card. It works just like a credit card when ordering online, except it is not charged, the money is paid out of your account. Very handy.

And as others have pointed out, many sited do take PayPal. it's easy to order online.

Not as good as actually being able to see and feel the yarn and colors, but the next best thing...

Imagine the old days with no internet, how isolated some knitters were from yarn choices, and especially from helpful friends.

BTW, estate sales can sometimes turn up a treasure trove of knitting supplies.. sounds ghoulish, but it's not really. I would be happy to know someone else was enjoying my knitting stuff, rather than having it tossed in the trash.

05-01-2011, 02:00 PM
If there are certain brands of yarn that you like, go to their website.
A lot of them have catalogs that you can subscribe to for free. You then can order through the mail or online.

I get catalogs from Lion Brand and Patons. I never knew that LB made so many different yet great yarns to work with.

Jan in CA
05-01-2011, 02:35 PM
I also get catalogs from Webs (http://www.yarn.com/catalog/_/formID/87cdfc3e-c1da-4682-8913-5bee07f87603/), Knitpicks (http://www.knitpicks.com/cfCart/catalogRequest.cfm), and Patternworks (https://www.patternworks.com/requestcatalog.aspx). Even if you don't buy they are fun to look at and sometimes there is other technical info especially in the KP catalog. Patternworks is the biggest and makes me drool! :lol:

Wanda Witch
05-05-2011, 01:12 PM
If you have a PayPal account that deducts from your bank account Fabric.com has a nice selection of yarn some new, some discontinued, and if you purchase $35.00 the s/h is free. I have ordered from them quite a few times and they ship very promptly also. I too am in a place where there is no LYS so rely strictly on the Internet. I know, it doesn't take the place of feeling the yarn but ya do what ya gotta do to get yarn. :knitting: