Posted in Knitting
December 3, 2008

Less is more

In design, less is more…at least I think so. And now that we’re officially in a recession, at least according to what I’ve been reading, it’s time to have a look at how we shop and spend in relation to our knitting. My friend Margot has a really interesting post up at the moment.

As she says there, while overall sales at the big box stores are trending down (into the gutter, if you’re prone to panic or have gone to certain the-sky-is-falling needlearts shows), basic craft supply sales are holding steady. People aren’t buying the mass-produced junk — seriously, the only thing that makes the Jo-Ann Superstore near me super is the super amount of junk they sell in the center that has nothing to do with fabric or yarn or craft supplies — but they are buying what they need for DIY. And FYI: I do not go to Jo-Ann to buy ceramic birds, or gnome statues, or overpriced candle sets. I go to buy fabric.

Fabric, Jo-Ann. Your core business? Remember?
Oh, and notions. So maybe keeping more zippers and stuff in stock would be a good idea.

I digress.

Have you changed your own spending habits relative to knitting? Or are you continuing to spend on your knitting and cutting back in other areas? Which crafty purchases are you cutting or changing? Are you buying less books and more PDFs? More sweater yarn and less one-off novelty stuff? I’d like to know!

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  • Pandorasslave

    I feel like the only reason my buying habits have changed is because my stash has outgrown it’s original storage area.

    I buy one book per paycheck, if there is something I really want, and buy a lil bit of yarn if it is for a specific project.

    All in all, I don’t really feel like my spending habits have changed, because I always lived paycheck to paycheck. With the holidays coming, and me only working on projects for other people, I really don’t have the time to buy yarn for myself. (It certainly doesn’t stop me from looking on Etsy though!)

    I buy pdf files because they are available and more eco friendly, and offer a chance to pay designers for their work fairly, not because of the recession.

    Reply to Pandorasslave
  • SewIknit2

    Interesting article and points.
    I have long since tried to stop randomly buying yumminess just because I had to HAVE it! but find that yarny-yumminess (and magazines! especially!) are the hardest to resist of all!
    For my knitty/sewist needs, I continue to buy what I need from the same shops as before and where I might cut down on other more general shopping expenses, I can’t see me stopping with the crafty stuff.
    What I might do is see what I’ve already got and only buy what I actually need and if I get a desire to knit something NEW – instead I’ll try and use from stash as, presumably, when I bought it I wanted it badly then!!

    Reply to SewIknit2
  • Cathy

    I’ve been knitting from my stash for at least the past 6 months. I’ve been using the library for knitting books and knitting more free patterns. I’ve also been working my way though my spinning stash to make more yarn. And the latest thing I’ve done is I’ve decided to process my fleece myself rather than send it out to be commercially processed. I’m saving up for the hand cards now.

    Reply to Cathy
  • Daniella

    Definitely knitting from stash a bit more. But this is exactly why I firmly believe in the ‘yarn savings account’/stash. If I do buy yarn, I’m tending towards sock yarn. I can justify the purchase a little because I get quite a bit of knitting out of a single ball of yarn.

    I’ve cut back on movies, dinners out, etc. in order to keep my fiber habit healthy. I do find I’m knitting more socks, mittens, hats, etc. instead of sweaters right now, though I probably have enough stash for at least a few sweaters.

    Reply to Daniella
  • robyn

    i’m actually using more of what i have and trying to buy less. which is REALLY hard to do, as i keep seeing all this great yarn i want to use. but i’ve all but stopped frequenting the LYS, settling instead for Michaels or Hancock fabrics for my yarn purchases.

    which are still few and far between.

    i’m trying to make holiday presents only with what i’ve got on hand. harder than i’d thought it would be, but a great exercise in finding great patterns that people will love that also use up stash!

    Reply to robyn
  • Margot

    Great post and thanks for the linky love. It’s an interesting time. You’re insightful, well spoken and right on the money sista!


    Reply to Margot

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