View Full Version : Why, oh why, is yarn sold in hanks?

02-13-2006, 02:46 PM
Is there really a good reason for this that I am unaware of or am I correct in my conclusion that it is some cruel and sadistic joke that we as knitters are forced to be the butt of? 880 yards of lace yarn + lack of swift/winder ensemble = 1 cranky knitter boy with a suddenly foul mouth. i hate to admit it, but there is a TINY part of me that enjoys handling the yarn i will soon craft into a fabric, kinda like we're making friends first, but NOT sufficient enjoyment to account for the trouble. please tell me there's a wonderful and intelligent reason that will make me happy. :wall:

02-13-2006, 02:53 PM
I feel for you! I don't have a swift either, but I do have two kids who can sit on the floor holding the hank open while I stand above them winding the yarn into a ball.
I once left an open but unwound hank of KP Alpaca Cloud on the bed, only to come back to find hubby lying on the bed (and yarn) watching TV! I almost lost it..............

02-13-2006, 02:58 PM
I don't have a ballwinder/swift either. I tend to recruit a friend to help hold the hank - usually on our feet while we watch tv - and then I wind the ball up around something, which makes it easier to hold onto. I usually wind them around the handle of a hairbrush, but a skinny flashlight - like one that takes AAs - would work as well.

02-13-2006, 03:01 PM
i'm too impatient to wait for a friend. must... try... new... yarn... NOW. ;) i'm using amy's center pull ball trick, which is working great and all, but 1 hank of lace takes like an hour! it's ridiculous! my kingdom for a skein!

02-13-2006, 03:06 PM
i gotta tell ya, even before i had a swift and ball winder i prefered working with hanks than skeins. i found myself rewinding them into a ball anyway because of yarn vomit from skeins. i would wrap the yarn around my laptop screen while i watched TV and talked to y'all and it worked great. not as fast as the ball winder of course but still worked well!

02-13-2006, 03:37 PM
When you wind up a ball of yarn, it creates tension in the yarn. You should never wind up a ball that you aren't going to start using very soon, because it will all settle in on each other and when you pull your yarn out it will come out in big, tangly clumps.

One fix to this is to get an industrial ball winder (r large capacity), and wind it from the skein, and then wind it from the ball once more. This will give you a ball with very little tension in it, with no stretch in the yarn.

02-13-2006, 03:53 PM
It looks prettier in hanks, too. ;)

02-13-2006, 04:18 PM
yarn vomit


02-13-2006, 04:24 PM
:happydance: Good answer, Ingrid! :happydance:

02-13-2006, 04:51 PM
it IS pretty in hanks, i will concede that. and it's kinda fun to try to get BACK into a hank when i can't stand the thought of winding. ;)

yarn vomit.... fabulous. perfect terminology too. forevermore, i will make a BLEH sound when my skein spews.

02-13-2006, 05:52 PM
Unless you bought your yarn online, the yarn store should be winding it for you.

(a ball winder & swift really ARE worth the investment if you DO shop for yarn online....IMHO)

02-13-2006, 06:47 PM
Not really sure why they make hanks.... :?? I don't have a swift either...The first time I tried to roll a hank into a ball, it ended up in the biggest mess...took me 2 hours just to get it untangled! I have found that flipping a dining room chair upside down and putting the hank around it makes a great alternative to a swift...hope this helps! ;)

02-13-2006, 08:17 PM
Brace yourself, slightly cynical view coming:

Have you noticed that it seems to be the most upscale and expensive yarn that comes in hanks, while the yarn of the "mere mortals" comes in usable little balls? :?? It's almost like fiber companies want us to declare how "hard-core" we are.

I have a friend who won't read paperbacks that come in that smaller, pocket-size - he'll only read "trade paperbacks" in the larger, more pricey size because he thinks it's a status thing. Same with yarn, maybe? :thinking:

02-13-2006, 08:30 PM
well i am finding it odd to come across my lambs pride in hanks now...not sure if that is the case everywhere but they need to stop it...i like my lambs pride just like it is...and it almost NEVER spews at me! ;)

02-13-2006, 08:30 PM
If you scroll up and read Yarnmommy's explantion, it makes a lot of sense.

There is also the point that less people would buy yarn if it were all in hanks, and places like Michaels, etc., would go out of business.

My husband will only read hard cover books. :rollseyes: He only reads one a year, though. :rofling: