Thursday, December 27, 2012

LYS....can be a dirty word

When I first started knitting, I purchased my yarn at chain stores like Michaels, Joanns, WalMart...etc.  Now there is nothing wrong with the yarn purchased in these stores.  And I was content to stock my stash from the lovelies found on their shelf.

But hanging out with a bunch of enabling yarn lovers (yes my lovely ladies of the Wednesday night knitting and crochet group, I am referring to you), I soon learned a new dangerous term....LYS, short for Local Yarn Store.  Yup as whole store for yarn.  Well most have other fiber related goodies, but yarn is the star of the show. And the yarn, well you don't get these goods at the big box chain stores.

Now I'm not a yarn snob, and the yarn in the chain stores has a happy home in my hoard stash cabinet.  But the first time I visited a Local Yarn Store, I lost my ever-loving mind.   My oh my....who knew such lushness  could be found stocked is these small retail locations.  I'd done some web surfing and even jumped out on a limb and made a couple of on-line purchases.  But there is nothing like stepping into a brick and mortar  yarn shop.  The colors and textures sweep you and your wallet up into a euphoric a good way...I think.

The good....hands on interaction with lots of fiber goodies.  I mean really, there may be something very wrong with fiber lovers, the way we moan and sigh as we touch and pet a skein of yarn.  In a yarn store, such behavior is overlooked. If we did this on the street, people would likely give us a wide berth.

The least for me...there is no calculator automatically keeping a running total of purchases.  Talking about sticker shock when my total gets rung up.

So how does one go about finding and LYSs in the area:

1.  Enablers....join a knitting or crochet group and I guarantee, they'll help you out there (see paragraph 2 for an example)
2.  The a search of "local yarn store".  You can limit the search to your area or do a city, state, country or global search.  Google, yahoo, yelp and other such sites are great ways to locate LYSs
3. Ravelry.....the mecca of yarn related arts.  Yup you'll find out about yarn shops there...but be warned, once you get into Ravelry, you can't get out :)
4. Smart phone  There are a number of LYS related apps for both Android and iphone. I am not sure about Windows phones, since it's been eons since I've played around with one of these.
5. Old fashioned yellow pages...I guess you could use this.  But since it's been eons since I've used them, I'd probably have to use the internet to look up tips on how to use the yellow pages.  Sad, I know.

In some upcoming posts, I'll talk about some of the LYSs that I've had the pleasure of visiting. I'll also talk about LYS crawls.  OMG....what's more fun than visiting yarn stores...taking a friend or friends and hopping to several in a day!

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Where does the time go

Well it's no secret that I pretty much suck at blogging.  I sucked at keeping a diary, so it's no surprise that my blogging would suffer the same fate.

Good grief, it's been 365 days since my last post.  Ha...I actually started this post a couple of days ago, can I get points for almost sliding in under a year?

So what have I been doing this past I mean 365 days that has kept me way too occupied to even stop in and say hello?  Well I've been knitting, crocheting (minimal) and I picked up two new fiber arts...dyeing yarn and spinning yarn!  Yup I'm a fully fledged fiber junky. I'll catch you up on all of those new fun activities in future posts.  (Yeah, yeah, yeah, I know...suck at blogging...blah, blah, blah). I am trying to get better and hopefully my 2013 goals will keep me on track.

I joined the 13 in 2013 group over on Ravelry and made some pretty aggressive goals:
13 knit or crochet projects from 13 different books
13 knit or crochet projects from 13 different magazines
13 knit or crochet projects from 13 different pattern purchases

Wait...that's 39 one year...{glup}....I think I may have finally lost my mind. But as a craft book and magazine hoarder, I have tons of books. And that Ravelry...whoo, you'd think I would be happy with the kabillion free patterns. Noooo....I have to go buy patterns.  That said, I need to start using these purchases and nows the time to do it.   Will I get all 39 projects done?  Who knows...I plan to give it my best, but keep it fun while doing it.

I plan to add one more goal, to blog at least 13 times a month (rolls eyes at self and falls out of chair laughing at this one.) Yeah...trying to figure out when I'll have time to blog, when there should be a hook or needles in my hands during all of my free time.

In the mean time, while I get prepared for my 2013 goals, here are a few pictures of some of my hand dyed yarns and my first handspun.  Enjoy!

Toodles for now!