This skein is a recent gift from Number One Son. Worsted weight Biscotte & Cie hand dyed yarn from Quebec. How gorgeous is that colour? That adorable boy has purchased yarn for me over the past few months from "his" LYS (the one closest to his residence at school) - Lettuce Knit.

Its one of the more storied yarn shops in this city of yarn shops. 'Long time hang out of the Yarn Harlot, a photo shoot location for Franklin Hobbit's 1000 Knitter's project, where Ysolda attended knit nights on her early trips ('08) to T.O. visiting chum local designer and Lettuce Knit employee, Laura Chau - you get the idea. Currently they also seem to stock an abundance of expensive hand dyed goodies.

On this shopping occasion, as at Christmas, Number One Son says he chose a skein and asked whether it was "enough to make something". To a non knitter its a straightforward question worthy of a "yes" or "no" response. To a knitter the answer's more accurately "it depends" and that was the answer he got.

It wasn't the answer he needed though so he pressed further asking what you could make with that skein. Again, knitters know a knitter's answer to a knitter is "it depends". And again that's what he was told.

The thing is, he's not a knitter and I'd imagine that's pretty obvious to talk to him even before a classic non-knitter question like "is this enough to make something" comes out of his young mouth so it galls me an experienced knitter, and salesperson of yarn would be so obtuse.

(To be fair, I've heard this phrase in answer to the inquiries of new knitters in other shops at other times and wondered the same thing.)

Wouldn't the more appropriate answer be..."yes, you could make a cowl or a short scarf  or a hat with that but its not really enough for something like mitts and you'd need 6 to 8 of those to make an average sized sweater."?

Now I don't want him to think he wasn't well treated. DO NOT want to squash this new and FABULOUS trend of yarn gifts coming my way! So I just quietly suggested he might want to try try "Ewe Knit" which is also close to where he lives and where I sense the atmosphere is less woolly refuge where if you don't speak the "lingo" too bad for you and more classic "how can I help you today" retail.

He said he'd think about that but then added "its hard to believe that place (Lettuce Knit) can even survive so I'd like to give them the business". The knitterly cache of the shop and its wares has been lost on him. The sales potential of this son buying yarn for his mother was lost on the clerk. A sale, but no connection, was made.

After being "together" at my desk for a few days, the yarn and I, unlike the clerk and my kid, have a good solid connection. In fact the yarn's "telling" me, as I cruise around Ravelry, that it wants to be a springtime, graphic, open lace scarf like this.

Lets face it, connections between all "parties" (LYS, yarn, skill, needles, mood, knitter, pattern, colour, size...etc. etc. etc.) really is critical to successful knitting. The trick is to recognize the difference between a true connection and passing fancy. Not too much unlike life I guess!

Have a great weekend. Thanks for dropping by!


Brendaknits said...

Grrr! That kid of treatment makes me see red. As if they can prove their superior knowledge???intelligence??? by making your son grovel for information. Rude Dudes they are.

Sandra said...

"it depends" is the worst kind of answer, unless it is followed up with "...what were you thinking of? A hat? Mitts? maybe a scarf?" If they had bothered to ask a few questions, your son whould have walked out of there much happier.
Sometimes places can get a "rockstar" attitude - and it eventually becomes their downfall.
I've only been there a few times, once to take part in Franklins 1000 knitter Project. I prefer my local, friendly shops...

Anonymous said...

I second Eweknit! I hope he tries it next semester and finds it amenable.