Does anyone else use knit picks

I've been ordering materials from knitpicks.com lately. I was wondering what some of you other guys thought about their products???

So far their yarns seem a little ruff to me. I mean you get a lot for what you pay for, and it seems to be good quality. It just doesn't seem as soft as some of the other yarns I use. Granted I haven't tried very many of their yarns yet.
Has anyone here ordered a variety of their yarns, and what do you think?

I have much less doubt concerning their organizers and needles. I've loved everything I've bought from them along those lines so far.

-Ger

Comments

DeceptiveCookie's picture

Overall, the only thing I

Overall, the only thing I really like about KP are their needles... I have the Interchangeable Harmony Wood set and I absolutely love them. Their yarns leave a lot to be desired though and after buying a few balls here and there (to score free shipping during their book sales)... I don't think I'll be buying any more yarn from them. I didn't like the hand, or the drape on most of the yarns I've received from them. I've gotten a hold of Wool of the Andes, Stroll Sock, Felici Sock, Andean Silk, and Elegance. All of which got a resound "Meh..." from me.

I guess I'm just the type that needs to touch/feel/see yarn to fall in love with it. I blame my new madelinetosh and miss babs obsession on this.

CRobertK's picture

KnitPicks made me fall in

KnitPicks made me fall in love with knitting! Until last December, I'd always been the knitter that only knit during winter, I always bought really cheap yarn from Wal-Mart, and I used whatever plastic needle I could find for the pattern. Then a friend showed me her KnitPicks circular harmony needles she puchased. I loved the look of them, but I was hesitant because I was a plastic needle person. Her daughter is also a KnitPicks fan and has all of the interchangeables. So, I borrowed a set of the interchangeables and I was hooked! I have since replaced all of my needles (I only had straights) with the KnitPicks Harmony needles and expanded my horizons with a full set of the interchangeables, DPN's, and a few sock knitting circulars! I have purchased a lot of their yarns as well and have enjoyed every experience! I have been knitting non-stop since then!

I do shop at my LYS here in town, but it's a really small store. I have also made a few trips to some other LYS's in the area and have made many a purchase there as well. I agree with many of the otehr comments about shopping local vs. the chain stores & web sites. I would love to shop more LYS than big box stores, but at the same time, I'm not independently wealthy and also need to buy based on price and selection/availability when I plan a project or I'm adding to my stash.

I also have to say that I too have had amazing customer service from KnitPicks! I noticed one of the cables for my interchangables was splitting a bit next to the metal connector. I sent KnitPicks an e-mail and they very promptly replied with the fact they had already shipped me a whole new set (not just one cable). When I ordered the harmony DPN's, one set came to me in plastic. I again wrote them and they told me to keep the plastic ones and they were shipping me a new set in harmony. They suggested that I even donate the plastic ones to a local charity, church knitting group, or a school which I did actually!

CRobertK

-- Why live and let live when we can live and help live?

colamanknits's picture

I've always enjoy the

I've always enjoy the products that I received from knit-picks. I haven't bought any of their yarn because I try to do that locally. Some of my friends have bought their yarn and think highly of it.

Kerry's picture

I use the steel and wood

I use the steel and wood circular needles which I like, but have only used one yarn, a laceweight alpaca which gave off "hairs" which caused me to cough a lot. Should have knitted with a mask on. Would never use it again. It's academic anyway as KP wont sell to Australia but there are plenty of other companies who will. Also I wonder about their prices, they don't seem like 'fair trade'.

I went and read some of the

I went and read some of the blogs and online information. What an interesting can of worms. I'll agree with the negative comments posted about big business knocking of small business and making a profit. However, I went and looked at the prices for the darn pretty needles and I couldn't afford them neither would I be willing to pay the prices for what some of the other companies or my LYS charge for the higher end yarn.

For example:
Knitpicks straight 10 inch harmony needles 5.99
Darn Pretty straight 10 inch needles 24.99

Seems to me it's more a matter of what you are willing to pay for. I can imagine having a few of the Darn Pretty Needles for special projects and several of the knit picks needles for everyday use.

As far as the yarn goes well I guess you get what you pay for. After reading the other comments about the yarn, I probably won't buy anymore. I'm making a shawl out of some of their lace weight shadow yarn now. We'll see how soft it is when I'm done and have blocked it.

BuduR's picture

For many of us price is

For many of us price is going to be a factor in everything we buy. I know I certainly can't afford buy expensive yarns for everything I want to knit. The old argument that I could save up and buy the more expensive yarns doesn't really fly with me either. I do save up and buy the more expensive yarns for things I plan as gifts and such. Also the argument to save the small yarn shops although I agree with it is a hard one for me since I don't have a LYS. I do order from a couple of small shops who will ship when I can.

I do have to wonder why people make such a big deal out of KP though, when there are others out there like Elann.com who sells yarns for cheap but I have yet to hear anyone say they refuse to buy from them.

The problems I have with the yarn shops (there's 2) who are closest to me, neither one cares if I shop there again or not. One shop sells only high end yarn (nothing under $25 a skein) so I really can't afford to shop there, and the other is run by people who are rude, don't follow through with orders placed and still owes me $125 in yarn that I ordered and paid for 3 or 4 years ago. Of course they no longer have a record of the order and the owner has argued with me that I had to have gotten the yarn if I paid for it. (was a special order, not a yarn she kept in stock and she demanded payment before ordering).

MWK's Token Estrogen-American

It sounds like it's not

It sounds like it's not going to be big business that puts those two out of business. If they want to keep up and running they should consider their customers. I won't support a local small business just because they are a local small business.

On the other hand. I have a hobby lobby, micheals, and a lys here in Jackson MS. and I tend to go to the LYS more than the bigger stores because they have nicer yarns, but the owner is really nice and always willing to answer questions. I just won't shop their exclusively because the LYS tends to be more expensive.

-Ger

BuduR's picture

They've been in business for

They've been in business for years. For the one I think it's the summer people (we have a lot of famous people who own homes on both Lake Michigan and Torch Lake) and tourists that keep the one shop going. I think for the other shop it's her regulars and she does have a lot because she's the only reasonably priced shop there. I can't go there once a week or even once a month. That and she didn't like me pestering her about the yarn for 2 years.

MWK's Token Estrogen-American

Tallguy's picture

I have to agree with WillyG

I have to agree with WillyG in that some of their unethical practices leave me a bit disenchanted as well. Good question: I also wonder how they can afford to sell their products at such good prices. This subject has been discussed quite a lot recently on other lists – I'm surprised it hasn't been mentioned here. But look at these! --
http://dyakcraft.wordpress.com/2010/02/25/when-it-rains-it-pours/

The whole story behind these needles, and the legal battle now going on, is written here:
http://www.girlfromauntie.com/journal/not-in-harmony/#more-380
You will find this discussed on other sites as well. I haven't purchased the Harmony needles, but I did consider it. However, I must say that I like those Darn Pretty Needles a little but more. And they are not made off-shore.

Sometimes we have to take a stand.

BuduR's picture

I like KP. Some of their

I like KP. Some of their yarns are a bit rougher, but, they're better than some other yarns you can get for the prices, and the customer service is unbeatable. I called them about a cable that lost it's end that I bought over a year ago and they replaced it with no problem. I did get some bad yarn once that had a ton of breaks in the yarn, they had discontinued it, they replaced it with another yarn.

And I do love my interchangeable needles. I use them almost exclusively, and once I get all of my nickle set I plan to get the Harmony set also and replace all my clover bamboo needles.

MWK's Token Estrogen-American

Raymiew's picture

I've really liked most of

I've really liked most of what I've ordered from knitpicks. The yarns I've liked most are the City Tweed and Comfy. I haven't knit with a lot of the others. I've ordered a few others but not knit with them yet. Comfy is my favorite cotton/acrylic I've found for making baby items (and adult items). City Tweed was just a lot softer than I thought it would be and I really enjoyed knitting with it.

I like the Nickle Plated needs a lot. In fact I use them for almost everything at this point. I've had a couple cables come loose but otherwise no problems. Considering how much use mine get, I don't complain too much about that. I liked the Zephyr points that I bought, BUT one of them came loose from the metal base. They were nice to knit with if I needed a needle with a little more grip to it, but after two projects it came loose.

WillyG's picture

Hi Ger (and all you

Hi Ger (and all you guys/gals), this is probably not what you were wanting to hear, but then again, you asked in a discussion board.

I know some people love KP, and I bear no ill will towards them, but I'll say from the front end that of late I'm hesitant to buy from KP. It's more a matter of principle than of product, though I believe the latter reflects the former. I haven't backed up everything with first-hand research, but what I keep hearing from different circles is rumors of unethical practices that leave me a bit disenchanted (thought not really surprised). But honestly, I haven't fallen in love with their products enough to keep me coming back for more, anyway. The Wool of the Andes didn't impress me...like you seemed to experience, it didn't seem as soft as some of the other brands out there. I tend to like things that have a more local/home-made feel about them, and KP in my mind stands at the other end of the spectrum. For a basic yarn with lots of colors, I think there are a few other yarns I would prefer over the one I got from them.

If I was to buy more of their yarn, it would probably be some of their newer tonal lace/fingering or the Alpaca sock yarn. But for me, I like to feel connected to the yarn and the people behind the yarn; it tends to have a sentimental value besides being about the final product. For instance, when I travel, my souvenirs are usually yarn/fiber that I may not expect to find somewhere else. The price tag seems more worth it when I feel more connected to the people making they yarn. I think a bit of that rationale is related to why I took up spinning, and is further fed by that same experience.

I'm not trying to be a hater, and I often use the needles I bought from them (though I'm slowly working my way back to Addis). I just feel caught in the midst of that struggle for brick-and-mortar stores and the life connected to them, versus the price tags and the 'system.' If I buy online (since even the brick-and-mortar stores still mostly carry lines that remind me of chain restaurants), I enjoy buying from individual dyers or mills. It's part of the enjoyment that I get from knitting, and always has been one of the things that gets me excited about it.

There's my humble opinion. I prefer hand-dyed/spun yarns. I like local better than corporate. I gravitate toward rustic over mill-spun. I use Knit Picks, but I don't especially love it, and I don't see myself doing a whole lot of business with them in the future. I do like their book sales, but I wonder how they get such good prices.

teejtc's picture

I've used knitpicks a fair

I've used knitpicks a fair amount. I'm very happy with them - especially their Harmony Wooden needles (which I absolute love!)

Grace and Peace,
`tim