I know there are some yarns that are very highly coveted by knitters because they either have interesting bases or gorgeous colorways and sometimes they have both. These are brands that everybody has highly charged opinions on because they can be hard to get your hands on depending on how popular it is and how much the dyer puts out. These are also the same brands that people hoard yarn from because they are hard to get. Brands like Wollmeise or special edition colors of Opal or really delicious expensive yarns like Quivit.
But, this time I’m talking about a small indie dyer who has set up her home on Etsy. The (apparently) highly coveted Lollipop Yarn. This is the type of dyer that I want to be madly in love with because she is located in the United States and does lovely hand-dyed self striping yarns. Or at least they look lovely on the computer screen, but good luck getting any!
For the first time, I actually “camped out” in front of my computer yesterday waiting for the 7 PM update to see how much her yarn actually is. (Side note: she doesn’t list her prices anywhere but on the items when she updates and from what I could tell she runs everywhere from 34.99-37.99 for her yarn. The higher prices come with mini-balls for contrasting heels and toes) I was ready exactly at seven and hit the refresh page at exactly seven….all of the new colors she was putting out except for three had already sold out. By 7:03 PM the rest of the colors were completely gone.
Granted, for the first time that I have seen, she is actually doing unlimited pre-orders of some colors and I take it from the not-so-very-active Ravelry group that some of these colors are highly desirable fan-favorites. There is a very attractive saturated rainbow called The Outer Limits as well as a very delicate and feminine Prissy in pink, tan, and white. Gorgeous yarns to look at and the sock bases she is using sound like nice workhorse yarns.
However, I don’t think that it would be worth even trying to get your hands on a ball (even the longer-to-stay-up Unlimited Pre-Order balls) to try because of the ridiculous time frame that you have to hit perfectly to snag a ball. Especially when there are other Etsy dyers that are doing something very similar like Nomadic Yarns*, Scrumptiouspurl, or Stray Cat Socks.
Yes, I do realize and admit that this post might be a tiny bit whiny because I didn’t get to see how much a ball of black/white/rainbow self-striping would cost, but if I am having this problem I am sure that other people are having this problem or possibly being turned away from this yarn as well. And that would be a huge disservice to the dyer because her work is lovely. I do want her to profit in her work so she can have the means to do more of it to make it worth her time as well**.
But at what point are we willing to fight to get a ball of something “pretty” that most of us probably don’t really need, but just want? I guess I found my turn off point.
*Full Disclaimer: I have ordered from Nomadic Yarns and was very pleased with the time frame it took to custom dye on my choice of base and ship to me. And she is very easy to order from.
**Full Disclaimer 2: Having dyed yarn in the past, I do know how much of an effort it is to dye yarn, and becoming a full-adult, I do know what a time commitment that would be to even do part time. Because I know have that money background, I do sincerely hope that Lollipop Yarn continues to do well enough to make it worth her time and that she enjoys doing what she does. I would hate for somebody to read this and think that I’m just “hating on her to hate”. Lollipop Yarn, I wish you well, but I just won’t try to get anymore of your yarn because I would prefer to shop somewhere less exclusive.