PSA: How to buy gifts for knitters and crocheters

crochetyknitter:

Do you have a yarn addict in your life? LET ME HELP.

Now that holiday shopping is upon us, here’s a quick guide about how to shop for your knitting- or crochet-obsessed gift recipient:

1. Idkkkkkk. = All the gift cards.

 Everybody loves a gift card. Like, seriously. But where do knitters and crocheters shop? You can always go the big craft store route with places like Michael’s or JoAnn, but you can also support a family-owned small business like Jimmy Beans Wool or WEBS.

2. I want to get them yarn.

Ok, first off, if you do not you know what kind of knitted items they like to make, then I suggest going back to option 1. If you do know what kind of items they like to make, keep reading! 

When looking at yarn, there are two things to think about–weight and fiber content. Weight refers to the thickness of the yarn, and fiber content refers to what the yarn is made out of. These two things can be found on yarn labels.

Weight:

Here’s a rough guide to what weight to buy based on popular items. The yarn label will either say the weight or have a number representing weight.

Hats, headbands, scarves, blankets: Worsted (4) or Bulky (5)

Shawls: Fingering (1),  Sport (2), or DK (3)

Sweaters: DK (3) or Worsted (4)

Mittens: Sport (2) or DK (3)

Socks: Fingering (1) or Sport (2)

Avoid Super Bulky (6), Jumbo (7), or Lace (0) weights unless your knitter specifically asks for them.

Fiber Content:

If your knitter usually shops at big craft stores, they are probably into 100% acrylic, acrylic blends, or cotton. Acrylic is made from coal or petroleum, so it’s not very eco-friendly, and it usually gets a bad rap from “yarn snobs.” Cotton yarn is always the best bet for knitters that might have allergies or live in warmer climates.

If you want to buy wool, get something soft like merino or something with cashmere in it (these are types of sheep), and it’s always awesome when it’s superwash (meaning it can be machine washed without felting into a hot mess). Beware though that some are allergic to wool. If you’re not sure about allergies, find some cotton!

Avoid rarer fibers like mohair or possum (because of possible allergies), nylon/acrylic/whatever/whatever/whatever blends, ruffle yarn, fun fur yarn, and anything that is dry clean only. Your knitter might like this stuff, but not all knitters do, so play it safe.

3. I want to get them some tools.

I have a big budget:

Get them a needle set (like this or this or this) for knitting or hook set for crochet (like this)! 

           For knitters:

Have you seen what kind of needles they are usually using?

Like are they just pointy on one side and there are two of them? Those are straight needles. These are usually used to make rectangles and squares like scarves, dishcloths, and blanket squares.

Are there more than three and they are pointy of both sides? Those are double-pointed needles (DPNs). These are used to make small tubes like socks and mittens.

Do they have some weird cable that connects two pieces of pointy sticks together? These are circular needles. These are used to make bigger tubes like hats and sweaters.

Needles come in a variety of sizes and you pick a needle size based on things like what type of yarn you are using and how big you want your stitches to be. A needle set will provide your knitter with a variety of sizes to keep in their toolkit.

Needles also come in a variety of materials such as bamboo, acrylic, or metal. Bamboo seems to be the favorite among all the knitters I know.

I have a small budget:

There are a ton of cute and little (i.e. inexpensive) tools a knitter or crocheter needs in their toolkit. The ones that I think are the most fun are stitch markers. These act like bookmarks when you’re knitting or crocheting and need to remember the number of stitches or rows you’ve created. Tons of people create handmade and themed stitch markers, so I recommend Etsy. If you have any questions, just message the maker.

Still have questions? Feel free to message me!

YARN ADDICTS: PLEASE REBLOG! 🙂

Important!! 🙂 

What I’ve done with some of my knitter friends is exchange “mystery socks” yarn ball, and it’s a great way of getting rid of scrap yarn! Basically you just gather up random colors and materials of yarn of similar weight, tie various lenghts together and the end result is self striping yarn! Super fun 🙂 

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