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Old 01-14-2010, 01:45 AM   #1
Ribbing the Cuff
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Handmade vs Mass Produced
Hi everyone! I was wondering if there's a way to tell if a knit hat (for instance) in a shop or street vendor is handmade or mass produced? Also, how fundamentalist are you in purchasing the two? Do you even buy stuff you didn't make?

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Old 01-14-2010, 01:49 AM   #2
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I do buy stuff I didn't make. I wouldn't make a sweater with lace or even fingering weight for instance. Too much work on tiny needles so I'd buy that for sure. I probably wouldn't buy a hat or scarf though because those area easier.

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Old 01-14-2010, 02:16 AM   #3
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Well, because its hand made and not mechanically precise, the stitches will never be 100% exactly the same like they look when machine knit.No offense to knitting by hand of course; obviously I love it. I think the slight unevenness of the stitches are wabi-sabi.This is why I love DIY.

It really depends for me what I buy.I tend to stay away from anything mass produced because I like a unique wardrobe.Stores don't tend to just sell stuff I like either.A lot of the crafts I take up, I do because the store bought version is expensive.I really wanted a Victorian corset a couple years ago and looked at the prices,then made my own.

As for handmade items, I only buy from street vendors.If I can make something and I find it in a small shop, I make my own.I realize these people still need business and luckily I have a lot of friends that aren't quite as crafty who I can recommend these places to
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Old 01-14-2010, 03:22 AM   #4
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I couldn't agree with meow more!
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Old 01-14-2010, 06:47 PM   #5
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To tell if something is handmade or mass-produced I would look at the seams. Mass-produced sweaters and things tend to be cut out of large pieces of flat machine knitting and then sewn together with a sewing machine. Hand-seaming will look different. Or you could look at the size of the yarn. Look at a T-shirt, or underwear, or a commercial sock. No one could knit with yarn that small, you'd need like 000000000 needles.
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Old 01-15-2010, 10:55 AM   #6
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I have scads of sweaters I've bought at the store. I don't have enough talent to knit them, but I appreciate that someone, somewhere had to, then wrote out a pattern or program for a machine to reproduce. But, I have been known to incorporate things I see in mass produced goods into my own projects.
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Old 01-15-2010, 11:04 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by meowmeowmeow View Post
Stores don't tend to just sell stuff I like either.A lot of the crafts I take up, I do because the store bought version is expensive.
That is funny you say that...I wanted to get stuff that I couldn't find, or couldn't find to my satisfaction in the stores. For me it was all about finding what I thought was authentic looking Harry Potter Gear. And although it is probably widely available in England, it is not in Canada. So, I started making my own!

I will usually buy stuff in the store that I can't make my self. I am not a seamstress, so anything regular cloth, or leather, or anything of the like I will buy. If I see something that catches my eye sweaterwise (usually a bulky knit) I pass it buy, cause I would feel prouder if I made it myself. I tend to shun scarves/hats/mitts that I don't make myself, and fall/Spring I am only wearing socks I have turned out myself. Once the weather gets warmer, I need to be in a lighter sock!
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