Review · Yarn

Review: Online yarn shops Part I

I meant to put this post up sooner, however the weekend ended up being dedicated to a significant work in progress. The result? A new mini-hutch! I realized last week that I had officially outgrown my IKEA hutch, every single bit of it was filled and the yarn was packed in like sardines. My option was to buy a whole other piece of furniture to go in my room and I can’t help but say that it really helped piece the whole place together. I absolutely adore it. Now it houses my lace and fingering weight yarns, with room to grow! I’ll post some photos when I can get some that aren’t so grainy. Ok, on to the reviews!

Unfortunately, the local yarn store does not carry all the wonderful yarn brands available (although they do carry some amazing stuff) so you eventually have to try your luck and order those desired skeins online. Sometimes this can be risky, what if you don’t like the yarn? Or you love it so much but if you order more will the same dye lot be available? Often times we yarn-aholics will take the risk and just order the yarn because, well, it looks so darn pretty in the pictures and on other people’s Ravelry projects. I find myself buying a lot of my yarn online these days, so I wanted to share with you some of my favorite places. I would like to say that I am giving you my personal opinion and pulling from my own experiences. None of the online yarn shops have asked me to write about them. I prefer to write about the shops where I’ve had a good experience because I don’t see the point writing about the bad ones. Ok, let’s get started…

1. Knit Picks

I think this site was the first place I ever bought yarn online from. They only sell their own brand of yarn and it’s easy to get hooked once you order a few skeins. I have an embarrassing amount of Knit Picks yarn in my stash. I like this site because of their wide selection of yarns for each weight. I’m sure everyone could find a particular yarn to suit their fancy. I am a sucker for their Palette yarn (remember the 3 tubs full?) and their Wool of the Andes yarn (just ordered some for a sweater). They also sell knitting needles (which I have the nickel-plated and harmony wood ones and love to death), accessories, patterns, and books. I’ve ordered from them loads of times and never had a problem with something left out or forgotten. Want to see a project I made with the Palette yarn? I made Ishbel early last year, the shawl gets used a lot and still looks great.

2. The Fiber Fix

I started purchasing Madelinetosh from this online shop sometime late last year and I don’t think you could find a nicer shop owner. Vanessa is wonderful at adding that something extra to make you feel like she cares about each order. One time I got a bit of the most delicious peanut brittle with my yarn order and a very sweet handwritten note. Those little touches make buying yarn online feel a lot less impersonal. Vanessa also has several gorgeous patterns that she’s designed. I highly suggest looking into them, her designs showcase hand-dyed yarn very well. The yarn prices on her website are comparable to other places, both online and physical places. She tends to sell the specialty, hand-dyed yarn. Ya know, the stuff that makes your eyes go wide and jaw drop from its sheer beauty. And yes, I do have a project to show you of a project made with some Tosh DK I bought from this store. This is Crooked Paths in the Antler colorway. I can’t wait until it gets cold enough to wear it again, it was so comfortable!

3. Webs

Webs has an enormous yarn selection. I suppose they would have to with the URL www.yarn.com. Sometimes it can be overwhelming when being faced with so many possibilities and I suppose a newcomer to yarn choices could be a little timid in trying to decide what to get first. Which is why I like that they have a really great search mechanism. Coming from a person who lives and breathes searching and advanced searching in a professional capacity, I find the ability to limit your search very helpful. Do you know what kind of weight or fiber you’re wanting to start with? You can choose your options in the advanced search and there you go, the list is narrowed down somewhat. They also have amazing sales, which is nice when you need to buy something in bulk. They have icons that let you know if the yarn is discountable after buying a certain amount. I actually have an order arriving in a few days of some Shetland wool from Harrisville Designs. I don’t have any projects associated with any of the yarn I’ve purchased from them yet, but I will show you a photo of some St. Denis Boreale that I bought in the past. Doesn’t this yarn look scrumptious? It’s going to be a Juneberry shawl one day, that I know for sure.

Ok, well I hope this helps a little when thinking about what places are “safe” to shop at. The big wide world of yarn is very big indeed and I think it’s nice to know which places have a good reputation before handing them your hard-earned cash. I have four more shops to write about. I’ll probably split them up into two more posts, making this a small three-part series.

If you have any shops you enjoy please share their name/site link, I always love visiting new yarn shops, both virtually and in person. ♥

8 thoughts on “Review: Online yarn shops Part I

  1. Fantastic review! I like that you showed your projects too – that hat looks like something I might just knit too! If you are ever inclined to try some NZ possum yarn, The Wool Company (www.thewoolcompany.co.nz) is incredibly fast and efficient. And no, they aren’t paying me to write this!

    Looking forward to reading your other reviews.

  2. I love http://www.theloopyewe.com. Great service and lots of indie-dyed yarns as well as some of the bigger names. They include a wee something extra for your first few orders and after about 6 orders you become an even more special customer and get another extra special gift.
    http://www.littleknits.com. Mostly closeouts, but good prices and I’ve been happy with everything I’ve bought from them.
    Both of the above aren’t too bad for international shipping either which is something we have to think about in New Zealand.
    http://www.colorsongyarn.com does fleece artist and hand maiden yarns with free shipping and I’ve been happy with their service too.

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