Sunday, April 10, 2011

The Penny Pincher's Guide to Cheapskate Knitting - Part 4 - Online Knitting & Supply Sources

For an obsessed knitter, the internet may be the best thing since sliced bread for 24/7 yarn and supply shopping.  There are countless online stores, large and small, for every conceivable type of yarn and knitting paraphernalia.  When I'm searching for a certain type of  frugal yarn for a project, I have some top favorites which I will share with you here.  Feel free to add your own favorites in the comments section below.

One of the places I search weekly is  http://www.herrschners.com/.  Every Wednesday around noon (Pacific Time) they post discounted yarn on both the "Yarn Sale" section and the "Hot Buys" under the yarn category.  Seems lately it hasn't offered much I'm looking for, but I've snagged some serious bargains in the past for as low as .99/skein for Plymouth Encore, Moda Dea closeouts like Tweedle Dee, Bamboo Wool & Sassy.  They tend to carry a lot of Red Heart & Lion Brand, but when there is a serious markdown on something it tends to sell out quickly.  It pays to get there early when they post the sale items on Wednesdays and do a quick scan.

Probably the very cheapest yarn source I know of is http://www.smileysyarns.com/.  Super cheap prices on lots of Plymouth, Lion Brand, Filatura Lanarota, Rowan and more.  This is purely closeout colors and yarn lines and they make no pretense.  Once a month or so they have a .99 special on something that is usually pretty awesome.  I bought 200 skeins of workhorse, machine-washable Plymouth Encore DK in neutral solids for .99/each the last time I ordered.  So far I've used it to knit a man's pullover and vest and am starting an ivory baby blanket with it and that only made a tiny dent.  The only drawback on this site is the flat rate $12.95 shipping cost.  I wait to order until I am buying at least 130 skeins so the shipping averages out to .10/skein or less.  Teaming up with a friend(s)to order is also a good way to reduce the shipping hit.

Higher end yarn from the major yarn companies is available on http://www.elann.com/, another of my go-to's.  They have their own low-priced line of yarn in a wide range of fiber weights and combinations along with everything from Reynolds to Naturally to Rowan and lots of patterns and books.  I go to the "Bargain Finder" and scan the newest stuff, much of it 50% - 75% off.  The shipping (it is coming out of Vancouver, BC) seems reasonable if going to the Northwest, not as good when I ordered from Texas.  I have noticed there seems to be a significant savings on the shipping for bigger orders, however.

A recent favorite is http://www.fabric.com/, which has some very high-end yarn marked down from 20% - 65%.  Today I found some lovely Nashua, Regia, Rowan and Filatura Di Crosa starting at $3/skein.  The trick with this website is to spend over $35 to get the free shipping and find an additional discount code on http://www.retailmenot.com/, a great source for many of your online yarn & supply purchases.  There have been codes for 20%-30% there in the past.  If you access http://www.fabric.com/ through http://www.ebates.com/ to place your order, you also snag a 4% cash rebate. 

The ultimate best source of current yarn sales, both online and in stores is on the http://www.ravelry.com/ postings on the "Yarn Sales" group.  I have found out about some of the most awesome sales both online and at local craft stores of any other source.  If you haven't joined http://www.ravelry.com/ yet, this group alone is worth getting involved for the 411 on sales.

More next time on great online sources for yarn and supplies.  And feel free to share your best cheap-o yarn and supply sources in the comments here.

2 comments:

  1. thanks for the shopping tips, I spend so much money on yarn, Great ideas!

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  2. Great tips! I love that Rav group, too. Thanks. :)

    ReplyDelete