Sunday, November 16, 2008

The most disenchanting LYS visit ever.

Wow. I don't think I can ever go back there. I went into the Knitting Bee since we were on that side of town and thought I'd check them out after hearing all these rave reviews. I was excited, I was hopeful. I hadn't been to a yarn store in two weeks and I was so ready to pick out yarn for f.pea's mossy jacket. I knew what weight I wanted, I knew a basic idea of what color I wanted, I thought 25 minutes would be enough.

It started out OK, I was greeted when I went in, and shown the grand tour of the store. After that I got to work touching and looking, walking back and forth to find what I wanted. It's normal to touch yarn when you're trying to find what you need right? I was stuck though and nothing was jumping out and grabbing me, so I kept going back and forth enjoying myself exploring the store. This prompted what I'm guessing was the owner to come and ask me if I needed help. I told her "No, I'm just trying to pick out what color I want". She laughed and made a joke about just wanting to touch everything. She seemed harmless, I went back to looking.

A few minutes later she popped up behind me and began to ask me what I was making, and after explaining it was a newborn sweater, she began her bizarre episode of trying-to-make-me-buy-her-favorite-yarns. I attempted telling her what colors I wanted, and that I loved Malabrigo and Manos and that I wanted Fall colors or Winter colors. She kept mentioning how lovely Spring colors would be, and showing me cottons and telling me Alpaca wasn't good for a baby and that Cashmerino would be lovely. No matter what lovely Fall greens and browns I chose, she kept showing me lettuce greens and talking about Spring. I'm not sure when I put out that "I need you to hold my hand and pick out my colors for me" vibe, but man was I regretting doing so now.

When I told her I was going for a worsted weight because the pattern was written in aran and the smallest size was a 6 mos so I was using worsted, and smaller needles to get newborn. Then she opted to try educating me on how I shouldn't make everything in such sizes because babies grow. That's when I explained I had four kids already so I knew that. ::insert her eye-brow-raising here:: Is it wrong to have your own plans for a project, especially when it's for your newborn? ::sigh:: It didn't stop, as I put back the yarns she kept giving me as suggestions I heard her ask another store employee "Tsk - Where is that Smooshy I gave her?!". I guess I was offending her yarn choices for my project.

Then she came up and was again pointing out the lovely spring colors of green in the Malabrigo (I guess she was settling on helping me find a better color choice in the yarn of my choice...) and began to now ask me if my children had the same hair color and color tones as I did. So I said, "Well, no not really. I've got all colors really. I've got a redhead, a brown, and a blonde". This proceeded to produce some eye-brow-raising towards the other store employee. I have no idea what that's supposed to mean. I should've just left then.

At one point, I'm on my knees looking through yarn feeling horribly rushed and frustrated, and they are both standing behind me, watching me. I don't hear the whole conversation, but I pick up something along like the lines of how I don't seem to mind non-superwash wools. I turned around and saw one of them seeming at a loss for why I'm so weird with her hands upturned in disbelief as she explains this to the other employee. So I told them that I'm already cloth-diapering, and using wool soakers so those are being hand washed anyhow. It's really not a big deal to me. You know, honestly, if I have a superwash item, with the massive amount of laundry I'm doing already for the 6 of us, if it gets tossed in the machine, I will at some point end up putting said item into the dryer on accident. Probably on the first run. Or my husband will, if he picks up where I left off laundry-wise, or vice versa. I don't see the huge convenience of being able to toss it into the washer, but still having to dry flat. Trust me, in our household, it's much easier not to set ourselves up for accidental feltings with the so-called wonder of superwash. I mean, I'm not picking up each washer item and tossing it into the dryer. I'm grabbing handfuls of wet stuff and tossing it into the dryer. Is it really that hard to toss an item into a bowl or sink of mildly soaped water, do some other things while it soaks, then rinse and lay flat? I digress though.

So, all the other customers leave, and now I'm imposing on them tremendously because it's now 4:03pm! The younger employee comes up apologetically lets me know that they're closed so I'm going to have to get going. But that it's OK because they have a staff meeting. Does that mean I'm not going to hell for staying a few minutes late now? Gee. Why don't you actually let me browse instead of hounding me and trying to force me to buy machine-spun yarns in fresh, happy spring colors?

Absolutely bizarre. And completely frustrating. I grabbed a hank of Malabrigo Olive and got the heck out of there. I should've just got nothing after all that shouldn't I? So I still don't have all the yarn I need for the sweater, and none of the sock yarn I wanted to pick out for the other kiddos. I really should've gone to Yarn Garden instead. It would've been so much less painful. Do I sound bitchy? Well, yeah, I am about it. It was just weird. When I go into a yarn store, I'd like to be left alone like when you go into a bookstore. You know, I've never had a bookstore employee try to coerce me into buying their favorite books on cooking when I tell them I'm looking for a book about fluffy kitties.

There also seems to be a huge trend of middle-aged LYS owners that make a funny little face when you tell them you love Manos or Malabrigo. This one seemed confused that I wasn't going to felt with it. Guess the hand-spun isn't popular with everyone. That's cool with me. Just don't bug me if I like it. I'm going to venture out again and hopefully return in the next couple of days with some lovely sock yarns and a good idea of how I'm going to knit up my mossy. I love the rustic look of the mossy! I hope it turns out good after all this.......I've got a lot more things to knit in the near future, and some more Sheepy Pants longies as well. And lots of oddly colored socks per my children's requests. And some more of those lovely little newborn socks that are so easy to make. And perhaps even something for myself...and poor dh, who will never pick out the yarn for his ear warmers.

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