Posted in Knitting
January 10, 2009

Poll (win free patterns!)

Hi! Do you like to answer questions and win stuff? Well, today is your lucky day, because I would like to ask you a question or two about how and why you buy single patterns. The poll was here:


One lucky random person who fills in the poll will receive PDFs of all my current patterns on Valentine’s Day as a present from me.

Bonus question — please answer in the text field there or in comments here. Does your local yarn store sell pattern PDFs on their website? If not, do you know why not? Inquiring minds want to know. And supermega bonus love if you tell me who your LYS is, but you can do that in email if you’d rather — admin @ this domain dot com. Thanks!

UPDATE: thanks to everyone who’s replied — we’re well over 1000 responses now, and I’m going to shut it down while it’s still small enough for me to manage the data and give all of your responses the thoughtful consideration they deserve. Winner to be announced shortly (20 Jan), because I can’t resist the temptation to give away the prize today!

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  • Laura

    I forgot to answer the bonus questions when I took the poll, oops. My LYS doesn’t sell pattern PDFs on their website (www.knitpickyyarns.com) but they have just started selling things on the website so I don’t know if they plan to add PDFs in the future. I would suspect that they aren’t aware of the possibility, or don’t know if the patterns they sell are available as PDFs– do most of the big name pattern companies (like Fiber Trends) even allow that?

    Reply to Laura
  • Post authorShannon

    As I told Laura in email — no, not everyone does that, but we are!


    (This is the designers’ pattern co-op I founded. We’re selling directly into the yarn stores, which is why we’ve got a booth at TNNA this upcoming week. We have a new digital option, and we’re trying to move the stores away from paper wherever possible. It’s better for the environment, it’s better for you — the pattern purchasers — and it’s certainly easier for us, the designers, which means we can spend more time designing cool new stuff instead of trudging to the post office, you know?)

    Plus I am just really curious to hear your opinions on these things! Thanks, everyone.

    Reply to Shannon
  • Rasa Chambers

    River Colors is my LYS..I don’t believe they sell pattern PDF’s from their website.

    There are quite a few on-line yarn stores that cary PDF’s on their websites.

    Reply to Rasa Chambers
  • Michelle

    This is a great topic for research particularly since social media are changing so many day to day aspects to our lives.

    Forgive me for asking, but was there a spot for contact information on the form? I’m afraid I didn’t fill out anything more than my first name.

    Reply to Michelle
  • Diane in Northern CA

    Although I am losing one of my LYS this weekend (Commuknity in San Jose, CA), I am very fortunate to have a number of LYS in my area (~ 20 – 30 minute drive). One of my LYS (Purlescence in Sunnyvale, CA) does sell their patterns both through their website (http://store.purlescenceyarns.com/) and via Ravelry.

    Love the Rivulet Cardigan. Not sure I can wait until February to see if I’m the lucky winner of this contest….may succumb to pressure to purchase this on my next payday.


    Reply to Diane in Northern CA
  • Meg

    My LYS does not currently sell PDF patterns off their website, but they do have several good free patterns to download. My LYS is http://www.shopknitch.com Good luck with your research!

  • Elly

    I just answered the poll – but just realised – there was no email space there?

    Reply to Elly
  • jonquil

    i don’t have a particular lds. i have a moderate-severe chemical allergy (perfumes, colognes, potpourri-the fake kind-, cleaning products–basically anything chemically based & in aerosol form) which limits my ability to shop as much as i would like 🙁 it doesn’t do any good for me to walk into a shop just to have to leave due to perfume residue.

    Reply to jonquil
  • Margit

    My LYS, http://purlescenceyarns.com, sells some of their own in-house patterns online, and they also have some free patterns you can download from their website.

    Reply to Margit
  • turvid

    My LYS don’t have a website.

    Reply to turvid
  • Autumn

    My LYS’s, (The Yarn Shoppe, Elk Grove, CA, Knit-Witz, Stockton, CA, and Knitique, Elk Grove, CA) don’t sell PDF’s on their websites. Their websites do not have a lot to them anyway.

    Reply to Autumn
  • Kristen

    My 2 main LYS’s don’t sell PDF patterns on their websites….one, White River Yarns, in White River Junction, VT doesn’t sell from their website, Lois isn’t set up for it, just lists classes, new arrivals etc. The other, The Knitting Studio, in Montpelier, VT doesn’t either but I’m not sure why. They are set up to sell yarn, and register for classes, but there are not patterns available online. Contact them, I bet they’d put some up, they may not be aware that they could.

    Reply to Kristen
  • Post authorShannon

    To answer a question I just got — if whoever wins hasn’t also left a comment here (and therefore, I’ve got their email address), I’ll hunt them down / announce it here…

    My bad to have not entered an email address field (I’ll do that now, and make it optional in case you don’t want to answer).

    Reply to Shannon
  • Pingback: Wow! re: the poll — knitgrrl (Edit)

  • bunnysquirrel

    I’m in Baltimore and none of my LYSes sell PDF patterns that I know of.

    Reply to bunnysquirrel
  • chelsea

    My LYS does not sell pdfs online… and I have absolutely no reason why they don’t! I would definitely buy them! 🙂

    Reply to chelsea
  • Lisa

    Just completed the poll and answered the bonus question….hope I win. Fingers crossed!

    Reply to Lisa
  • Leah Vanessa

    My LYS is the Fiber Factory in Mesa, AZ and they don’t have any PDF’s on their website. They do have a few free patterns up, but they aren’t PDF.

    Reply to Leah Vanessa
  • Andrea

    I know my 2 lys do not sell pdfs online. To be honest I don’t know how much of their business comes from online users, because their sites are general information sites at best. (Although their offline(!) personas are 110% better.)

    Reply to Andrea
  • Jason

    Just a comment to say that I’m a dolt and answered the question wrong on the poll. I don’t frequent any LYSs, but of those that I’ve been to around me, none offer pattern PDFs online. 🙂

    Reply to Jason
  • MaggieBelize

    Neither of my LYSs offer PDF patterns for sale or even free download through their websites. They are Village Wools of Albuquerque, NM (http://villagewools.com) and Good Fibrations of Edgewood, NM (http://www.goodfibrations.net).

    Why not? Not to sound too snarky, but my guess is computer illiteracy. Neither has the in-house expertise to maintain an e-commerce site.

    Reply to MaggieBelize
  • Kata

    My LYS doesn’t sell pdfs on their site… either LYS. Both Needles and Pins, and London Yarns (both in London Ontario). I think it would be a good idea (mind you neither of them really sell ANYTHING from their site), because I prefer things to be paperless if at all possible. If I NEED to print it out and mark it up, I can… but when they sell fancy patterns in plastic sleeves on nice paper, I feel like I’m juts going to destroy it somehow.

    I’ve purchased about 100x more patterns online as pdfs from the designer (another benefit!) than I have in store. It just makes more sense to me.

    Good luck with your survey!

    Reply to Kata
  • Post authorShannon

    I’ve been to Unwind — it does indeed rock!

    Reply to Shannon
  • Karen

    I forgot to add the bonus answer… I generally only shop online, so I don’t have a specific LYS. There are a few that I’ll go to if I’m in dire need of a new needle, but otherwise I usually order online or download directly from the desingers.

    Reply to Karen
  • heidi

    We now only have Joanne’s, Michael’s and Beverly’s . We lost our small independent yarn shop last month. I’m not sure if those chains sell PDF patterns I know that the independent didn’t!

    Reply to heidi
  • D Louise

    No, my LYS, Fiddlehead Yarns in Kenosha WI, does not sell PDF’s on its website.

    Reply to D Louise
  • plumbum

    LYS is not even a concept for me. Thank heaven for the Internet!

    Reply to plumbum
  • Walden

    My LYS doesn’t sell PDFs on their website, but they are just starting to sell things at all on their website.

    Reply to Walden
  • Michelle in Colorado

    The LYS that I go to do not sell patterns online. One of them just now started to have the class schedule online.

    Reply to Michelle in Colorado
  • JE

    I don’t have a specific LYS anymore. When I am out and around if I see a yarn shop, I will go in and probably buy something. When I travel, I check to see what LYS might be in the area.

  • Toni

    Of the four yarn stores in the area that I visit on a regular basis none of them sell PDF patterns on their websites.

    Reply to Toni
  • Christie

    I forgot to mention my LYS in the poll. It’s Karen’s Needlecraft in Pitman, NJ. Although, I do tend to quite a bit of my yarn and supplies from Michael’s and A.C. Moore.

    Reply to Christie
  • kimberli

    My favorite LYS (Black Sheep Wool Co. in SLC) doesn’t have patterns on their website. They have a free Pattern of the Month every month, though, but it’s not in PDF format, you just print out the page. Other LYS’s that I know of don’t have any PDF patterns on their websites – Kamille’s, and Needlepoint Join (Ogden, UT). The Needlepoint Joint does list pattern books for sale/ordering, but no PDF’s.

    Reply to kimberli
  • Terri D.

    My LYS, Knitty City in NYC, does not sell PDF patterns on their website…but they are lovely, anyway.

    Reply to Terri D.
  • ellen

    Of the two LYS in Oklahoma City, SWAK in the City does sell patterns via PDF download, but Gourmet Yarn Company does not. Too bad, because while I will happily browse a selection of patterns online I won’t bother to dig through a looseleaf notebook, which is what Gourmet Yarn uses.

    Reply to ellen
  • Sasha

    I’m based in Western Australia and we haven’t as many LYS’ as you lucky US & Canadian folks do! So, as far as I know across most of my “local” yarn stores (some a good 45min drive away) none sell PDF patterns. The stores include – calicoandivy.com & woollylattes.com. Hope this helps! 🙂

    Reply to Sasha
  • MBelford

    My LYS is just getting up and running with their web presence, (Knit & Caboodle, St. Charles, MO) and I’m not sure what their plans are for offering .pdf patterns as this presence grows.

    Reply to MBelford
  • shihtzuma

    I have 4 LYS’s. Only two have websites, only one has on-line shopping and http://www.Yarn-IT.net but does not have download-able patterns.


    Reply to shihtzuma
  • Estella

    Forgot the bonus question too – my LYS, Knitting Central in Westport CT, does not sell PDFs on their website.

    Reply to Estella
  • Gina

    No the local shops do not sell PDF’s, it would be nice if they did, but I tend to purchase from an online store or direct from the designer.

    Reply to Gina
  • Donna

    My LYS does not sell PDF’s on their web site but I wish they would (altho I can understand why a LYS would want its’ customers to come in to buy a pattern). My LYS is Chix with Stix in Forest Park IL. (It has a bead shop on one side & an ice cream parlor on the other – heaven – esp nice when I take the grands yarn shopping & they can look forward to a sweet treat afterward!)

    Reply to Donna
  • Chelsea N

    My LYS (Sow’s Ear, in Verona Wisconsin), doesn’t sell anything on their website…I’m not sure why though. It would be super awesome if they did, though!!

    Reply to Chelsea N
  • Meta

    My LYS is Cynthia’s Fine Yarn and Gifts in Mackinaw City, Mi.
    She is not currently selling PDF’s online but maybe someday!

    Reply to Meta
  • ReginaInCA

    no, i dont think any of my 3-4 LYS sell PDFs online. thanks!

    Reply to ReginaInCA
  • Yvonne

    My LYS, Shuttles,Needles and Hooks in Cary, NC does not sell PDF’s on their website mainly because they don’t have a website.

    Reply to Yvonne
  • Connie

    My local yarn shop, Spirit Work, does not carry PDF patterns on their website. I do not know why.

    Reply to Connie
  • Rachel

    My LYS (Webs in Northampton, MA) does offer some downloadable patterns for their line of yarn (Valley Yarns). Not a lot- and I can’t see a way to access only the patterns you can download- but they’re there! yarn.com is their site.

    Reply to Rachel
  • Meghan

    My lys, Nina in Chicago, does not carry PDF’s on their website. They should.

    Reply to Meghan
  • Diane Vanderwerff

    I <3 several LYS and none of them sell PDF patterns on their websites that I am aware of. They are Gate City Yarns – Greensboro, NC, Common Threads – High Point, NC, Knit Picky – Winston Salem, NC and Hillsborough Yarn Shop – Hillsborough, NC

    Reply to Diane Vanderwerff
  • Liz

    My LYS is Twist in Lahaska, PA.
    The shop does not offer PDF patterns for sale.
    I do bring my patterns in, and everyone enjoys looking them over I share the url, but not the pattern etc. Twist is VERY good in not copying patterns etc. I applaud them.
    Twist is not online, but does email customers.
    I do shop about once a quarter at Purl in NYC.
    While they do not sell PDFs, they do have lots of free patterns available via their blog. Currently, you just print the pages, but we are told the patters will be available as PDF soon. I do bring these Purl patterns with me to purchase yarn for Purl projects.

  • Jan

    My local yarn store (Knaughty KNitter in Murfreesboro TN) doesn’t carry PDFs on their website nor do any of the ones near me in Nashville! Don’t know why either!

  • Tracy

    Michaels is my LYS and their patterns on the website are all free. All you gotta do is put what you are looking for in the search box.

    Reply to Tracy
  • Sheknitsone

    OOoooOOops! I forgot the question on the bottom too! I don’t think that any of my 5 lys’s sell PDFs, I’m not sure why though…………..

    Reply to Sheknitsone
  • lynn

    My LYS, Knitche in Downers Grove, Il does not sell patterns on their web site (it is pretty basic) and I am pretty sure they do no sell them in store.

    Reply to lynn
  • Jamie

    my lys is about 50 miles away and they will mail me anything but I don’t think they do PDF……

    Reply to Jamie
  • Audrey S.

    My LYS is Unwind in Burbank, CA, BTW!

    Reply to Audrey S.
  • Liz

    I don’t think that any of my LYS has .pdf’s to purchase, one of them might have some patterns to share. http://www.sit-n-knit.com/index.htm is their website, and the pattern tab just has a list.

  • pat

    forgot bonus question
    I don’t think that my LYS sells PDF on their website (I don’t visit their website much). Knit a Round (Ann Arbor, Michigan), Michaels, Flying Sheep (Ann Arbor, MI)

  • Lindsey

    Forgot to answer bonus question — I don’t really have a LYS as I live in benighted NW London, and the nearest place that sells yarn is over a mile away — a vast department store called John Lewis in a huge and horrible shopping mall. It has a yarn corner full of overpriced yarn (mostly Rowan and some of the German sock yarns) and as far as I know doesn’t have anything about knitting or yarn on the store website. Real yarn shops are further away, and I’d have to travel for an hour or so to get to them, so I do most of my yarn purchases on the internet.

    Reply to Lindsey
  • Ellen

    My local yarn shop, The Yarnery in Saint Paul, MN, does not appear to sell pdf patterns. They do sell patterns online, however, but they appear to be just regular patterns that they mail you.

    Reply to Ellen
  • knittinella

    No – my LYS doesn’t sell ANYTHING on their website let alone PDF. It is Cricket Cove in new brunswick, I wish – wish they would sell online though.

    Reply to knittinella
  • Marsha

    I never buy online from LYS that I walk into. The world is my LYS via the internet. I tend to subscribe to all of the knitting magazines, including Knitty.com and Twist and knit many patterns from those sources. Seeing and hearing a designer always results in a purchase!

    Reply to Marsha
  • Marsha

    My LYS is Black Sheep in Encinitas, CA, BTW. There are several more and we are lucky to have choices. Black Sheep is my favorite.

    Reply to Marsha
  • Cheri Sicard

    I live in Big Bear, CA and my LYS is Yarn Designers Boutique. To be honest, I don’t know if she sells PDF patterns. She’s pretty computer savvy, so she might, but if she does, it’s not publicized. Store owner Gena is fabulous though, great customer service and really caters to her customers.

    Reply to Cheri Sicard
  • twinsetjan

    I just did the poll as it seemed to still accept data even though you say it’s closed. In the event you didn’t get my input, the important thing I wanted to share was my strong feeling about .pdf naming conventions. It’s really helpful to knitters if the .pdf has a meaningful name — instead of design12.pdf use something like cable_and_lace_celtic_socks.pdf — otherwise we have a hard time finding patterns we bought earlier. I also recommend you include a large photo of the design on the first page as the first page will show in thumbnail view and help your buyers.

    I don’t believe my LYS sells .pdf’s, but then they might just advertise it very poorly.

    Reply to twinsetjan

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