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ekgheiy
03-16-2005, 06:45 PM
Another One Bites the Dust:

Ever since the infamous poncho (Martha's, that is ;)), a lady expressed serious interest in paying me to knit one for her. I told her that the knit pattern had not yet been released, but I would email her when it was released. I sent an email to her when Lionbrand released their pattern. I couldn't see myself feeling good about making the poncho in Homespun, so I suggested that she consider alternative yarns. We went back and forth about realistically affordable yarns and since I told her that I had not worked w/ Patons Classic Wool BUT I had never heard any complaints about them either, she "semi"-decided on Patons. By that time, however, I had already sent her an estimate in Homespun, which came out to $97.70. I thought that was fair, especially considering that ponchos in some retail stores are a lot more than that!! Long story short ... she thought $97.70 was too expensive... (Of course it would have been more money with Patons too.)

Go figure! :rofl:

:rollseyes:

When you await an estimate from someone, you have an idea of the maximum you're willing to pay. So I can't help but wonder how much she expected to pay; what was her "maximum" figure? 35 bucks?!! :??

Yeah right ... :wall:

KellyK
03-16-2005, 07:48 PM
You should have HER buy her OWN stinkin yarn...if she can find it cheaper, good for her! :P Then, just tell her you will charge so much per hour or per yard to knit it for her. Alot of folks have no idea what yarn costs.....

Flappy
03-16-2005, 10:01 PM
Also, I think most people don't realize how long it takes to knit something by hand. I certainly didn't know this before I started.

Most people in the US have been conditioned by Wal*Mart, Target and other large retailers to expect to pay low prices for quality merchandise. There's no way a hand-knitter buying small batches of yarn can compete with a factory in China.

Anne
03-16-2005, 10:17 PM
Hi Ek, I ask if anyone would knit the poncho for me on here with no response!!!!!!! So i thought gee no one needs money... :thinking:

Anyway, I have a lady knitting my Throw. :XX: I am thrilled to say the least as i did not want to knit it myself. Lost the desire for fear of ot many mistakes :crying:

I agreed to pay her $150.00 which i think is fair. The yarn cost $248.00 or $250.00.... I might as well pay her to knit the throw or the yarn would sit in the bag forever.

Hildegard_von_Knittin
03-16-2005, 11:06 PM
Most people in the US been conditioned by Wal*Mart, Target and other large retailers to expect to pay low prices for quality merchandise. There's no way a hand-knitter buying small batches of yarn can compete with a factory in China.

Agreed! Interesting wal-mart facts:
Nearly 80% of all merchandise on Wal-Martís Shelves is not made in USA. 53% of Wal-Martís imports are made in China.
In 2003, Walmart made 256 BILLION dollar in profits; the net worth of sam walton's heirs increased 8 billion dollars (from 94B to 102B)....less than 1% of that could pay for health care for all of its employees, yet less than a third of them have health insurance, which, naturally, isn't 100% coverage... and these employees make an average of 12 grand a year, which is BELOW the poverty line for a family of 3. :shock:

here (http://www.ufcw227.org/organizing/walmart.htm) is my reference for this info... i was doing research when i heard we *might* be getting one in our town last year... alas, it is nearly built and set to open this year sometime.

here (http://cecd.aers.psu.edu/pubs/PovertyResearchWM.pdf#search='walmart%20creates%20 poverty') is a pdf file of a study done by Penn State last October about how Walmart perpetuates a poverty-level society.

This effects *any* person in retail, not just knitters/crocheters/other crafty people who are trying to sell a high-quality product. Our local butcher shop sells SUPERB quality meat and dairy products, but at a higher cost than walmart... so when walmart moves in, here comes good prices, but there goes good quality. I'd rather pay more for something of quality, than less for something that's junk. I'll admit that I'm a yarn snob, too, when it comes to quality, and value for the money. Awareness is the key though; my DH's brother and his family shop at the walmart in the next town over **exclusively** and they can't wait until it opens here; they're not interested in/aware of how it effects our local economy. But when one of them loses a job b/c Walmart can import it cheaper, maybe they'll take the blinders off. :wall:

Gatomoso
03-16-2005, 11:21 PM
Thank you, Hildegard_von_Knittin! Well said (er, written)! I hate Walmart. Yet, I often think I should go and take advantage of their prices since my tax dollars are subsidizing it! I think it, but I DON'T do it! The NY Times indicated that many Walmart employees receive Food Stamps as well as Medicaid. Talk about corporate welfare!!! grrrr . . .

:evil:

MommaBear
03-17-2005, 01:47 AM
Awareness is the key though; my DH's brother and his family shop at the walmart in the next town over **exclusively** and they can't wait until it opens here; they're not interested in/aware of how it effects our local economy. But when one of them loses a job b/c Walmart can import it cheaper, maybe they'll take the blinders off. :wall:

I agree with you soo much!

ekgheiy
03-17-2005, 01:00 PM
You should have HER buy her OWN stinkin yarn...if she can find it cheaper, good for her! :P Then, just tell her you will charge so much per hour or per yard to knit it for her. Alot of folks have no idea what yarn costs.....

Oh yes, she knew she had the buy the yarn. I've heard a few horror stories about knitters fronting the cost of materials only to have the client back out of the agreement. I learn from other's mistakes; I wasn't going to buy the yarn up front. ;)

Also, I think most people don't realize how long it takes to knit something by hand. I certainly didn't know this before I started.


I honestly think she has an idea of the time and effort it takes because she does crafts too, just not knitting or crochet.

Hi Ek, I ask if anyone would knit the poncho for me on here with no response!!!!!!! So i thought gee no one needs money... :thinking:

Anyway, I have a lady knitting my Throw. :XX: I am thrilled to say the least as i did not want to knit it myself. Lost the desire for fear of ot many mistakes :crying:

I agreed to pay her $150.00 which i think is fair. The yarn cost $248.00 or $250.00.... I might as well pay her to knit the throw or the yarn would sit in the bag forever.

Damn! I totally didn't see that post! :cry: I did see your post about finding someone to knit your afghan for you, but you had already found someone by the time I read the post. :( Damn! ekgheiy slaps herself with a few wet noodles for snoozing

But do keep me in mind if you are in need of a fellow knitter. Send a PM though, I'm bound to see it then... :oops:

Most people in the US been conditioned by Wal*Mart, Target and other large retailers to expect to pay low prices for quality merchandise. There's no way a hand-knitter buying small batches of yarn can compete with a factory in China.

Agreed! Interesting wal-mart facts:
Nearly 80% of all merchandise on Wal-Martís Shelves is not made in USA. 53% of Wal-Martís imports are made in China.
In 2003, Walmart made 256 BILLION dollar in profits; the net worth of sam walton's heirs increased 8 billion dollars (from 94B to 102B)....less than 1% of that could pay for health care for all of its employees, yet less than a third of them have health insurance, which, naturally, isn't 100% coverage... and these employees make an average of 12 grand a year, which is BELOW the poverty line for a family of 3. :shock:

here (http://www.ufcw227.org/organizing/walmart.htm) is my reference for this info... i was doing research when i heard we *might* be getting one in our town last year... alas, it is nearly built and set to open this year sometime.

here (http://cecd.aers.psu.edu/pubs/PovertyResearchWM.pdf#search='walmart%20creates%20 poverty') is a pdf file of a study done by Penn State last October about how Walmart perpetuates a poverty-level society.

This effects *any* person in retail, not just knitters/crocheters/other crafty people who are trying to sell a high-quality product. Our local butcher shop sells SUPERB quality meat and dairy products, but at a higher cost than walmart... so when walmart moves in, here comes good prices, but there goes good quality. I'd rather pay more for something of quality, than less for something that's junk. I'll admit that I'm a yarn snob, too, when it comes to quality, and value for the money. Awareness is the key though; my DH's brother and his family shop at the walmart in the next town over **exclusively** and they can't wait until it opens here; they're not interested in/aware of how it effects our local economy. But when one of them loses a job b/c Walmart can import it cheaper, maybe they'll take the blinders off. :wall:

It's an aggravating situation Hilde. :( I admit I take advantage of the Target bargains, but that's because I can't afford higher prices. If I could afford better, best believe I would shop differently. It's just a domino effect really, so it's a tough situation. :cry:

Sara
03-17-2005, 02:17 PM
Even worse- WalMart is closing a store in Canada because the workers unionized. Women and unionization is the topic for my Women Studies class research project. Very timely, Hilde. Even more worse :rollseyes: , I live in an area where WalMart is the only game within 95 miles. After my husband's layoff, I've been much more sensitive to these issues, yet I can't always avoid buying from the enemy.

happenin
03-17-2005, 03:38 PM
KellyK
Alot of folks have no idea what yarn costs.....
You're so very right.

Flappy
Also, I think most people don't realize how long it takes to knit something by hand. I certainly didn't know this before I started.

Most people in the US have been conditioned by Wal*Mart, Target and other large retailers to expect to pay low prices for quality merchandise. There's no way a hand-knitter buying small batches of yarn can compete with a factory in China.
I didn't know how long it took either, before I started....yet I always had respect for the skills of the crafter. You're also so right about the conditioning and the Chinese cheating by slashing their actual costs in half of what the going market is on the international trade.

Not only that, beginning back on January 1st of this year, when US trade regulations were relaxed even more, they sent us (in January alone) the entire volume of goods they sent the entire prior year (read that again, that's over 260-odd BILLION in goods flooding our market in 1 {one} month). Don't believe me? Watch Lou Dobb's on CNN sometime and hear it for yourself. Imagine what's going to happen next. Seems a wide-spread problem throughout all industries in this country.

Hildegard_von_Knittin
Nearly 80% of all merchandise on Wal-Martís Shelves is not made in USA. 53% of Wal-Martís imports are made in China.

... and these employees make an average of 12 grand a year, which is BELOW the poverty line for a family of 3.

But when one of them loses a job b/c Walmart can import it cheaper, maybe they'll take the blinders off.
I soooo agree with you Hildegard. To be fair though, it's worth mentioning that I just picked up some acrylic's there and to be honest, I checked the labels and both the Red Heart and "Wally-World's" brand, Mainstay's, state it's made in the US. I am aware that MANY other items in their stores are direct imports however.

I agree with everyone about the poverty issues mentioned through this topic...it's the case here where I'm livin'. BTW, 12 grand is below the poverty line for 1 person, let alone 3. Again, to be fair...it's the same at my local K-mart's as well....have a family member workin' there for over 26 years, and she's now down to 32 hours a week....and prayin' she'll make it until retirement (if anything's left).

(Warning, Hap's on a roll here in the next three paragraphs)
Hey...years ago they made a song about just how bad things were my town (and in other similar towns in America)...Living here today is far worse than in the 80's when the song came out...those closing factories are either all torn down now or bare. Only a few properties have been rebuilt into Service industry sites for (mainly temporary jobs, whether they're addressed that way or not): low pay, no benefits, sketchy schedules, and inestimable employee "churnover". OR some half-baked storage warehouse with low pay, sketchy benefits-if any, 12 hour rotating shifts and inestimable employee "churnover." In return and along with skills testing, full physicals, drug tests and background checks, these jobs "Require": "experienced, dedicated, flexible, positive, motivated, multi-task and detail oriented, take charge-'assume ownership'" employees with steady and verifiable work histories?!!! I've even seen ($8/hr) Front Desk Receptionist job ads which demand 4 year degrees. How's that for "screening" versus the American Dream?

Trust me ... when/if someone loses their job to cheap competition, nobody is gonna care except the affected ones like you said. In my area, we've seen this problem for at least 2 decades through Steel and other industries (like Textiles)...only now the rest of the country is getting a taste of this. It's real sour, isn't it?!!!! The worst part is NOBODY is gonna care. Unfortunately, "Look for the Union Label" is as ancient history as "pride in workmanship", because to the consumer or the employer, those ideals have been replaced by "more for less" and "lower cost or nothing at all".

If we work with yarn, we do it as a labor of love. We cannot expect to make (much of) a profit as long as the scales are tilted as they are presently. In the back of my mind I dread the thought of actually becoming a new age version of the old, literal term for "spinster" in this economy....so I pick and choose what I do according to what makes me happy...not the rest of the demanding, instant gratification world.

Gatomoso
The NY Times indicated that many Walmart employees receive Food Stamps as well as Medicaid. Talk about corporate welfare!!! grrrr . . .
I don't have much of a financial choice these days. But I am aware that NOT ALL of their prices are lower than elsewhere. Like any other place you might think to shop....know your prices ahead of time. If you can buy it elsewhere at a similar savings, you'll get the best bargain's wherever you go.

My own personal comments, which you fine people have yet to cover....

-The money the Chinese are taking in (that is, at half the cost of the rest of the world economy's going rate for the same crap) is being saved and used largely to stockpile their military. So head down to your local Wal-Mart and buy them a bullet or a bomb, today. Wal-Mart might as well use a smiling Red bullet or bomb instead of their current logo. One day we might see one of those bullets or bombs and they won't be smilin'.

-The Chinese aren't the only people that can do things in large numbers. If we dumped our entire economy into them, it wouldn't buy one of their people FREEDOM.

-We too are known for working in masses...and we should again, because this is a one way trade to nowhere as far as I see it.

-I was told by a Chinese immigrant that the Chinese are so anti-American, he was unable to return to China for even a family visit. He would be considered a "traitor and a spy", and possibly killed, for simply having moved here to find a better life. But it's okay for the Chinese to infringe daily upon yet another inventor's patent.....talk about hypocrites.

Flappy
03-17-2005, 08:03 PM
Shame on me for hijacking ekgheiy's thread. Looks like I touched a collective nerve by mentioning Wal*Mart.

All I meant was that modern means of production put hand-craftsmen and women at an economic disadvantage to factories. We've known this since the Industrial Age. But, it sounds like the prospective customer was aware of this and still put off by the price.

Hildegard_von_Knittin
03-17-2005, 10:37 PM
Shame on me for hijacking ekgheiy's thread. Looks like I touched a collective nerve by mentioning Wal*Mart.


You didn't hijack it, Flappy, I did! Sorry, ekgheiy; it wasn't intentional. :doh: Walmart just makes me want to tear out my eyelashes... I'm not trying to diss people who work and shop there, either: my DH worked there for a while when we were first "living in sin," and all through college up until about 4 years ago I loved Walmart. I just became aware of it's detriment to rural locations when I became invested in small town life. In more urban areas, I think that it could potentially (in a perfect world) have some benefits: people can get jobs who may have been living on welfare... those who do qualify as low-income can spend less on groceries, and have more money to put into their education so as to get themselves off of public aid. (in a perfect world, remember, not necessarily in reality).

Rambling again, sorry... anyway, my bad. Back to the original topic, I made a scarf for a friend of DH to give as a Christmas gift; I told him I would charge only the cost of yarn... well, I used 4 skeins of fun fur, so when I politely asked for a very generous 20 dollars for the scarf, he balked at me like this :shock: as if I just asked for an internal organ... I said I'd take 10 if he had that, which he did, but *never again* will I knit anything for this dude. I didn't get what the yarn was worth, not to mention the time I spent making it. I feel like I have a better sense now of what to charge, with the reciept template (:cheering: yay ekgheiy!). This will help with consistancy too... I told DH's friend later that under no circumstances was he to tell ANYONE that I only charged him 10 bucks for the scarf, but of course, he somehow let it slip, and I had 3 people call/email asking about a scarf, and telling me what colors, yadda yadda; when I told them it would be 25 bucks for materials and labor, they ALL said they weren't interested; oh well, if they can do it cheaper, more power to them!

happenin
03-17-2005, 11:03 PM
I guess the long and short is we all agree with ekgheiy, share in her sadness and understand all too well the cause. My biggest regret is that my contribution wasn't nearly as concise and succinct.

My guess is there's still a market for quality, hand knit items, but it's a much smaller one that's willing or able to pay something other than 3rd world prices for it. :crying:

VictoiseC
03-18-2005, 12:43 PM
Well, thanks for the statistics about Walmart. I already knew a few but not to that extent!

I too, have recently got involved in small town life (although I also have a place in Manhattan). When we got our house in upstate New York, we watched a local Ames store (cheap department store) close down and finally made our way to the Walmart, about 25 miles away. We shopped there for about 5 years, off and on , mainly for the cheap Fancy Feast cat food. I bought a sewing machine there.

Funny thing, everytime we went there we felt very DEPRESSED.
Then, last year our neighbor recommended a Hannaford supermarket, just down the road from Walmart. Ever since I stepped in that Hannaford, I haven't gone back to Walmart and it's such an interesting relief! The cat food costs a few cents more but it's worth it. It's even woth it to buy a little less meat, or spend a little more than going into that HUMONGOUS soul-debilitating freak of a store. I don't know why, but this Walmart also has a large percentage of mentally-impaired people walking around, saying hello to you. Not that they are bad of course, but why are they always walking around in there killing time? It's WEIRD.

Of course, the Hannaford doesn't carry yarn.

Amazing statistics. I have stopped buying anything Chinese for a quite a while now. It's just not worth it. (and I used to laugh at my dad years ago who worked for Chevrolet and cursed the drivers of Japanese cars!)

V.

happenin
04-07-2005, 05:12 PM
Found this article and recalled the direction this thread was going. Figured it was better to post it here, rather than start another controversy.


Lawmakers Push Bill on Chinese Currency

By JIM ABRAMS
Associated Press Writer

WASHINGTON -- Congress for the second time in two days Thursday gave notice to both China and the Bush administration that it will take action if nothing is done about undervalued Chinese currency that gives Chinese goods an advantage over American competition.

"We are playing by the rules. We think the Chinese government is cheating," Rep. Tim Ryan, D-Ohio, said in promoting a bill that defines exchange rate manipulation as a prohibited export subsidy and sets guidelines for U.S. agencies to sanction China and protect U.S. industries.

Ryan was joined in sponsoring the bill by Rep. Duncan Hunter, R-Calif., chairman of the House Armed Services Committee, who expressed concern that China was using the billions of dollars amassed from currency manipulation to buy advanced weaponry from Russia and other countries.

The bill also outlines steps to protect the U.S. defense industry from unfair Chinese competition.

On Wednesday, the Senate showed strong support for a proposal to place a 27.5 percent tariff on all Chinese products if China does not revalue its currency.

The amendment to a bill authorizing State Department and foreign aid programs cleared a procedural obstacle on a 67-33 vote, but no action was taken on the amendment itself.

The proposal, said Sen. Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., co-author with Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., "says to the Chinese, `This is a shot across your bow. Reform, because if you don't there are going to be dramatic consequences.'"

The administration has pressed China to let the yuan float against the dollar, but has declined to pursue trade action, saying it was preferable to negotiate with Beijing.

On Thursday, Treasury Secretary John Snow, in an exchange with Schumer at a Senate hearing, said diplomacy was the best means of moving China on the currency issue and that Schumer's proposal "will be counterproductive." But he said he was not satisfied with China's response so far. "Are they moving fast enough? No, I wish they would move a lot faster."

The Chinese currency has been set at about 8.28 yuan per dollar over the past decade, a rate that analysts say undervalues the yuan by up to 40 percent. That makes Chinese exports significantly cheaper and drives up the cost of U.S. products sold in China.

Last year, the U.S. trade deficit with China hit $162 billion, more than one-quarter of the nation's record overall trade deficit of $617 billion.

On Monday, the administration announced it will bring trade cases against China to determine whether quotas should be re-imposed to protect textile and clothing manufacturers.

Ryan said that unlike other congressional attempts to impose sanctions on trading partners, they made sure their legislation complied with World Trade Organization rules. "It is going to be very difficult for the president and the administration to blow this off," he said.

Their legislation is supported by a coalition of business and labor groups, including the AFL-CIO and the U.S. Business and Industry Council.

* __

On the Net:

China Currency Coalition: http://chinacurrencycoalition.com/

benniesma
04-07-2005, 08:45 PM
I live in an area where WalMart is the only game within 95 miles. After my husband's layoff, I've been much more sensitive to these issues, yet I can't always avoid buying from the enemy.

Sara if you don't mind me asking, where are you located? My DH grew up in Andover, NY, I grew up in Scottsville. Lived in Hornell after we got married. We moved down to NC because we lived in such a depressed area we couldn't see making a decent living. It was our hope that I could stay at home w/ any future children, and that is just too hard to do in NY! Luckily I've been able to stay at home, even if that does mean a slim yarn allowance! :(

Sara
04-07-2005, 11:33 PM
My DH grew up in Andover, NY, I grew up in Scottsville. Lived in Hornell after we got married. :(

HOMEGIRL! Good Lord it's a small world. I'm in Alfred. PM me, we'll chat. For all you people out there in the real world, this isn't the middle of nowhere, it IS nowhere. Moved out here from Iowa in 1993 sight unseen so DH could do grad school. I cried for weeks. Heck, years. THEN we lived in Rochester for a few years. Came back to Alfred a few months ago and I'm still crying. So I knit. We rent from an Andover native. Lived in Hornell for a year. I'm probably giving too much personal info, but I'm sure you guys will know my bra size before long,especially if I start a blog. My in-laws are in Hickory, NC.

happenin
04-08-2005, 12:27 AM
I'm probably giving too much personal info, but I'm sure you guys will know my bra size before long,especially if I start a blog. My in-laws are in Hickory, NC.
LOL, sound like we just might. So just don't knit it and ask for help after giving us the full pattern description, okay? LOL :D

Yvonne
04-08-2005, 12:50 PM
As I've mentioned in other threads, I just knit the Berocco Ponshal for someone and am now making the Lion Brand pretty poncho for her as well. She is my daughter's teacher. When she asked me how much I would charge her, I asked her to make a donation to the classroom for school supplies for kids who can't afford them, and she agreed and said thanks.
Just for the fun of it, using that formula somebody mentioned of 10 cents per yard (she bought her own yarn) to make it, I figured out that it would have been something like $30 for the small piece nad $70 some-odd bucks for the large one.
My hubby said, "Well, it would be pretty hard to make any real money knitting then, huh? Don't people know how long it takes or how you make it so perfect? You'd really have to bust your a** to make anything."
And I think he's right.
Lucky for me I do it for the pleasure rathen than money, but of course a little money wouldn't hurt either. :happydance:

ekgheiy
04-08-2005, 01:44 PM
...Just for the fun of it, using that formula somebody mentioned of 10 cents per yard (she bought her own yarn) to make it, I figured out that it would have been something like $30 for the small piece nad $70 some-odd bucks for the large one...

The .10 cents figure is only for plain garter stitch, w/ zero shaping etc. That figure increases as the pattern activity increases. ;)

Yvonne
04-08-2005, 02:24 PM
Well, that makes sense then. The more intricate the pattern, the more one would charge per yard..
So what is the general consensus for average price per yard of yarn used, with .10 being the lowest? The highest would be?

ekgheiy
04-08-2005, 02:54 PM
Well, that makes sense then. The more intricate the pattern, the more one would charge per yard..
So what is the general consensus for average price per yard of yarn used, with .10 being the lowest? The highest would be?

I was thinking the highest being .20 - .25 for lace. And cables would be mid-range at .15 -.19. BUT ... I've been confused about the definition of "lace". Is "lace" anything that incorporates YO's and such?? If that's that case, I've done some work that incorporated a fair amount of YO's, yet not considered it lace. I always thought that lace HAD to be "intricate". :??

Sara
04-08-2005, 05:09 PM
I would say that lace is anything that has holes made in the fabric DELIBERATELY. Some things I have made have been "accidental lace."
*snicker*