View Full Version : Frustrated Sock Knitters Commiserate!

11-28-2006, 09:20 AM
Well here I am, a sock knitter with a burgeoning addiction. I've only done some practice socks on TLC and size 8 needles, but I'm itching to start real socks...you know, teensy needles, lovely lightweight yarn.

BUT! But, but, but...well it seems I'm having trouble finding those kinds of yarns. Haven't been able to find a well stocked LYS near me (though one promises a new shipment of sock yarn soon) and Michaels type places barely have anything in sportweight let alone lighter...

Big sigh...and then when I do find some yarn I'm met with the following conundrum: many of these yarns are $5 or $6 per ball and you need two balls per pair of socks......and, oh my, well I could just BUY my socks for much much cheaper. I could probably get at least 3 pairs of socks for $12. I know it's not nearly as fun, and that a nice handmade pair would do me proud and be fun to give as gifts, but with my budget so tight it's very very very hard for me to justify this kind of purchase. :verysad:

I'm not really looking for answers here, just whinging a bit since I very much want to jump into a pile of sock yarn and roll around in it like a million dollars.

Do any of you deal with these frustrations finding yarns and then justifying the price of it? Got any solutions or fav cheapy sock yarns? Good websites? Maybe I should finally check out Knitpicks....

ANYway--I LOVE knitting socks (on two circs!) :cheering: Just want to find a way to knit more :eyebrow:

11-28-2006, 09:29 AM
what do you mean you should finally check out knitpicks?!?! by all means YES! They are a pretty good alternative to more expensive sock yarns out in the world.

That being said....there are a lot of things you could buy cheaper rather than knitting them yourself and socks are a big one. If you really want to knit socks I am afraid you are going to have to get around that somehow. I don't know of any sock yarn off the top of my head that is really economical if you base the purchase on how much you could buy the socks for. :shrug: 'tis sad but true.

11-28-2006, 09:32 AM
what do you mean you should finally check out knitpicks?!?! by all means YES!

Hehehe, I know! I know! I'm already there.... :happydance: :cheering:

11-28-2006, 09:33 AM
I completely understand.

There is not a LYS near me either, only Michaels, WalMart, and one Fabric store that sells yarn. So a lot of the patterns I would like to do I can't get the yarn locally.

Money is also an issue with me. It is very tight for us right now and spending more on yarn than I could buy something for is a problem. When I do buy yarn I just tell myself it is not only paying for the FO but also entertainment/hobby expense. :teehee:

There are several places online to buy yarn, and they have good prices. My problem is that a few years ago we started figuring out how much we were paying in interest and fees from credit cards, so we got rid of ours. :shock: So anything I order will have to be check or money order.

You are ahead of me though, I still haven't gotten the nerve up to try socks. Oh well, someday I will.

Good luck

11-28-2006, 09:40 AM
Yeah money is a big bummer sometimes, huh?

Thankfully I'm 25 and single so I have relatively few responsibilities. I manage to pay off my credit card in full each month so I don't have to deal with fees and interest but yikes--between school loans, gas, rent here in Mass, utilities and whatnot there is very little room to play with. Especially since I should theoretically be saving for both grad school and a house. Why did I go into a field that pays less than my education cost??? Oh...right...cuz I love it, heh.

Not to highjack my own thread, but yeah...Knitting is such a joy for me lately and puts me in such a good place mentally and emotionally. I spend a lot of time coming up with ways to justify my purchases so I can keep myself in yarn. Hehehe...

11-28-2006, 09:59 AM
Well, it looks like you've been knitting longer than I have (given the date your joined KH), but I've found that my notion of what consistutes a "reasonable price" for yarn has changed considerably since I started. When I first began hanging out here, I couldn't fathom why people were so into sock-knitting when the yarn itself was so expensive relative to store-bought socks. BUT, now that I've gotten the bug, I can't stop knitting them.

I try to look at knitting as a hobby, and like most hobbies, it requires some investment. I used to play video games a lot, and compared to the cost of one of those (about $50), yarn is so not expensive. Still, I'm a frugal person, so I do have my strategies. One thing I've done recently is to make a bulk purchase of patons kroy. I found a bag of 10 on ebay for less than $30. It's not the nicest sock yarn, but it's acceptable. I got beige because I thought it would make a good base for KoolAid experiments. So that's like 5 pairs of socks for about $30, including the cost of KA. It should last me some time.

11-28-2006, 10:03 AM
Oh, ebay! Why do I never think of these things?? That should be fun, once I get familiar with what certain brands look and feel like in person.

11-28-2006, 10:39 AM
Recycling is another cost-effective option too. Feministmama (http://www.knittinghelp.com/knitting/forum/viewtopic.php?t=21490) recently made some socks out of yarn she frogged from a thrift store sweater. (Doing a forum search should yield more info on recycling, if you're interested.)

11-28-2006, 10:40 AM
When I do buy yarn I just tell myself it is not only paying for the FO but also entertainment/hobby expense. :teehee:

That's exactly how you have to look at it. Nobody here is knitting to save money. Pretty much *everything* I knit I could buy cheaper, esp. since I know how to shop. :eyebrow: But it isn't about saving money on a sweater or socks, it's about having fun. Sure, I could act out a dramatic scene in my head for free (I'm scarily good at it), but that won't stop me for paying for going to a movie. And I won't feel guilty about going to a movie, either. I could eat Ramen noodles for 38 cents (they're pricey in my neighborhood), and I do sometimes, but that won't stop me from paying many times that for a nice dinner out, and I don't feel guilty about that, either. Sure, there's always an option to save money, but sometimes, that's not the point. And this is coming from someone who's still in school and knows the meaning of no money, believe me.

11-28-2006, 10:46 AM
I also love sock knitting and we are also on a budget. I find that socks are a relatively low cost project compared to how much a sweater can cost to make. There is nothing like a pair of hand knit socks on your feet. So I guess that is my justification. Knit Picks is good for cheap sock yarn.

11-28-2006, 11:50 AM
Lion Brand sales a great sock yarn that is self striping. I can get it at my local Hancock Fabrics for about $7.50 per skein and each skein will make one pair of socks. BUT! Usually I can aways fine atleast one or more skeins on their clearance table for 30 -50-% off. If you have one of these stores nearby, you might want to check there.

11-28-2006, 12:03 PM
Has anyone tried this website: Simply Sock Yarn (http://www.simplysockyarn.com/StoreFront.bok)

They seem to have some great prices.

n sebago, me

11-28-2006, 12:08 PM
i like looking at their site, but i always feel like i can find better prices than what they have. :shrug: with all the time i spend looking for cheaper prices i am probably spending more in the end...lol

11-28-2006, 12:35 PM
Hi I live in Norwich CT. I don't think you're all that far from WEBS. You probably are not all that far from Warwick RI where there is a Fabric Place with a big variety of lower cost but good quality sock yarn.

11-28-2006, 12:43 PM
Hi I live in Norwich CT. I don't think you're all that far from WEBS. You probably are not all that far from Warwick RI where there is a Fabric Place with a big variety of lower cost but good quality sock yarn.

Yeah, WEBS is probably an hour and a half away...Warwick a little less. Probably worth a day trip sometime when I have money. I can't believe, in all the time I was living in Amherst/Noho while in school, that I never even knew WEBS existed!!

11-28-2006, 01:03 PM
I agree that most knitters don't knit to save money instead of buying the item outright (maybe this is why non-knitters think it's weird? LOL). For me, something like Lorna's Laces is a splurge; I content myself with more inexpensive yarns (that I usually find on sale or at elann.com) for a lot of my sock knitting. Earlier this year or last year, elann had a lot of Regia wool/cotton sock yarn for sale & that's how I ended up with about 8 balls.

For those who don't like to use credit cards, I use my Visa debit card for a lot of online purchases--it comes straight out of my bank account like a check.

11-28-2006, 02:40 PM
I was at Wal-Mart yesterday and I heard some ladies saying that WM is selling Visa gift cards this year. Those can be used online, and no credit card fees. :shrug:

11-28-2006, 02:51 PM
uuuuuuuuuuuuuugh it is just the beginning....Bank of Walmart.... :wall:

Mama Bear
11-28-2006, 03:09 PM
Sock yarns is one of my splurges, but I counter is by using recylced yarns for so many other things that my price per project stays low.

Hand knit socks are just SO much nicer than store bought that I don't think you can do a price comparison.

Mama Bear

11-28-2006, 04:20 PM
I love to knit socks but certainly not to save a $$. They are fun to knit and so comfy to wear, they are worth every penny to me!

Also look at www.carodanfarm.com. They have a lovely selection of sock yarn and good sales.

11-28-2006, 05:06 PM
Cheaper than therapy!!!

11-28-2006, 08:53 PM
I'm just in the middle of making my first complete pair of socks (go see on the blog!) with KnitPicks Memories. I think its about 3.99 a hank, two hanks = one pair of socks. So $8 for a pair of handknit socks. I have to say that, yes, of course you can get a pair or three cheaper at walmart or target but they just don't compare. That's my justification!

11-29-2006, 11:46 AM
I've made about 4 pairs of socks and don't want to knit anything else (even the mind-deadening scarf).

Knitpicks has nice sock yarn and I also got some relatively cheap from Joann's on line (sale). My fave yarn so far is Opal and although it sells for about $18.50 in the states, I've been buying from www.astridsdutchobsessions.com

Careful how you type that; I've been told that you could wind up at a porn site.

She has tons of sock yarn, including opal at about $9.50 a skein (makes 1 pair). The shipping isn't really outrageous and she uses paypal rather than credit cards.

My lys just doesn't carry much in the sock yarn line. I've seen the lion self-striping but generally I have to buy on line. (And I live outside of Detroit; very large metropolitan area.)

Careful on Ebay; I did get a little carried away bidding on a discontinued Opal colorway and spent wa-a-a-ay more than I should have.

FYI Walmart isn't the only one selling Visa debit cards. All the drugstores around here carry a variety of them also, Visa, AmEx, and specialty cards, too, like starbucks, barnes & noble. And you can buy AmEx gift cards at the banks.

Helps spending money just that much easier!!

11-29-2006, 03:59 PM
Careful on Ebay; I did get a little carried away bidding on a discontinued Opal colorway and spent wa-a-a-ay more than I should have.

You weren't one of those that spent $40+ dollars on that pink/brown/white colorway, now were you?

11-29-2006, 07:34 PM
Uh-- no, how about $27 for Opal Rainforest "bumblebee". Then, of course after I spent all that the seller just "happened" to have a couple more skeins, if I was interested. Hm-m-m-m.

Bad Gladys, Bad!!!