Confession: I shop at Michael’s

Since I picked up knitting a whole year ago, I’ve spent an incredible amount of money on yarn/knitting related purchases. So much so, that I’ve had an intervention (thanks, Rob!) I am a sucker for beautiful hand-dyed yarns, thoughtful notions, and the fanciest needles, but I’ve had to take a giant step back because THINGS ARE EXPENSIVE!

Here’s a rundown of what it was like a few months ago:

Skein 1: $30.00
Skein 2: $30.00
Skein 3: $35.00
Addi Sock Rockets (with a longer cord to knit two at a time): $14.00
Project Bag: $45.00
Skein 4: $30.00
Shipping: $12.00
Notions: $20.00

Total (off what I can remember, I’m sure there was more!) : $225.00

It’s really a downer to think that my hobby might be causing a financial crisis, but doesn’t everyone say that the first step is admitting it’s a problem? Well, it’s a problem. Here’s my giant a-ha moment:

After purchasing some gorgeous Voolenvine last month, I was eager to cast on some Fine and Dandy socks and I went stash diving to find the perfect contrasting toe. I found it in Purl Soho’s Line Weight 100% Merino (… dumb idea). So I began knitting and soon realized (as I was completely done with the foot of the sock) that the Line Weight is a terrible idea for a toe/heel! I’d wear right through it instantly. As I put my knitting down and considered my next step, I thought about my other socks, and how much money I was literally walking around on. It was shocking. I tried to snap out of it, but instead went on a frogging rampage.
I frogged every.single.WIP. Every one. I felt like a woman gone mad as I sat on my carpet completely surrounded by all these stunning, tangled yarns. I could feel tears of remorse coming on and my cat looked terrified, so I just sniffled,picked myself back up, and tackled the giant re-caking process. As I re-wound these five skeins, I felt slightly more centered, and I had a strong sense that something had to change. My desire to have new, better, trendiest, best, was going to put me in a place that I didn’t want to be in. I didn’t want my hobby to feel shameful! (Please click this link to see what it felt like and follow knitboy1 on instagram because it’s a bunch of hot men and yarn)

So I’ve slowed my consumer roll/role, and in doing so I’ve learned that a stash should be like a closet. If I were to fill my closet with expensive, beautifully tailored, and “trendy” pieces,  I would actually not have much to wear. If I were to supplement some unique pieces with a couple white tees, Old Navy Jeans, and Marshall’s finds, I’d have a cohesive, wearable, and much more stylized closet!

Enter my trip to Michael’s. I needed a durable toe for those beautiful Voolenvine socks I was going to recast on, so I found a hilariously bright and sparkly Vanna White brand 100% acrylic yarn that would not only compliment the pinks in my Pandora skein, it would be durable as a sock’s heel and toe. It cost me $3.99. On my way to the register I saw they were having a sale on charms, and I thought “Aren’t charms similar to progress keepers?” Sure enough they were, and I got a set of 12 (!!!!) for $4.99. I also bought a black and white version of a 90%/10% Acrylic/Nylon yarn to use as contrasts for future projects at $2.99 a skein. These pieces would essentially assist the yarns I already had in my stash, and make them a bit more practical.


I write all this to say that, in an ideal world, I could keep up with the Knitting Joneses. I could afford to buy those skeins and make those projects by their KAL deadlines, but I don’t live in an ideal world. And once I realized that I didn’t need to prove myself to anyone, I felt more at peace with everything. I know that I will buy fancy things in the future, it’s in my nature, but I hope that each of those purchases will be made wisely, and maybe they’ll end up being part of a high brow/low brow knitting project, who knows?








  1. Becca · April 13, 2016

    I’m happy you’re finding knitting balance! Confession: I’m totally a Michael’s shopper as well. Well, I prefer Jo-Ann’s because they have a better selection of sock yarn. I love Paton’s Kroy.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s