What Price Can’t You Justify?

When it comes to anything fiber-related, I rarely balk at spending money. Except sometimes. When it comes to purchases, what price can’t you justify?

To Yourself? To Your Spouse? What Price Can’t You Justify?

I’ve spent a LOT of money over the years on fiber-related items. There were rarely times when I denied myself when it came to purchases associated with knitting, spinning, etc. I purchased a Robin spinning wheel back in 2004. And even earlier, in about 1999(?) I purchased an antique Gearhart circular sock knitting machine.

However, there a few select items in my crafting world that I would love to have. But every time I go to pull the trigger and buy them, I balk. I just can’t justify paying what some things cost.

Here are my three biggest items:

Signature Double-Pointed Needles (promotional link)
Signature Double-Pointed Needles

For years, I’ve taunted myself with owning a set of these needles. I’ve loved the colors, the design and the rave reviews they get on quality and how nice they are to use. I’ve even picked them up with an intention to purchase and ended up putting them back. I just can’t bring myself to pay the price for them. And what’s made it even more difficult is the many similar knock-offs that have come on the market since I first started desiring them. Knitters Pride now makes both Karbonz and Zings double-pointed needles that are “good enough” and WAY less expensive.

Woolee Winder

The Woolee Winder has been tempting me for years.

Woolee Winder

This clever contraption replaces the bobbin and flyer on many spinning wheels and automates the process of moving the spinning from hook to hook. It evenly distributes the yarn on the bobbin. Here’s a video demonstration if you’re interested in seeing how it works. Again, I have pined for one of these for my Louët wheel and just can’t do it. I balk every time I see the price. I just can’t imagine spending that much money to replace a task that isn’t very onerous when I’m spinning. What’s worse is the prices have only increased over the decades that I’ve yearned for one. I hadn’t looked at them for a while until writing this blog. And I still can’t force myself to buy one.

New Gearhart Circular Sock Knitting Machine

I don’t need it. There would never be a time when I could get a return on my investment. I have a perfectly good antique version of the machine which sometimes makes perfect socks.

And yet I really want one.

ERLBACHER Gearhart - BasicMachine

A new one would work much more consistently than my antique (I think). And I can get it in virtually any color. They incessantly taunt me, but I honestly doubt I will ever buy one.

How about you? What fiber-related item can you just not justify paying for?

Current Knitting

I went back to production knitting…making Rose’s Fingerless Mitts.

This time I’m using my own hand-spun yarn, so you can see the inconsistency in colors in the fabric. I’ve started another pair and I’ll make as many of this one size of glove as I can. Then I’ll try and pair up the most similar mitts that seem closest to a matching pair.

10 comments on “What Price Can’t You Justify?

  1. I”m not a big fan of DPNs BUT I do own several pairs of Signature circulars. They’re not interchangeable, to my everlasting chagrin, and they are expensive, but they’re also my favorite needles. When my husband found out they are made domestically by a company in our state, he gifted me my first few pairs to prevent me buying (cheaper) foreign-made equivalents. Maybe Thaddeus can be convinced to spring for those DPNs on some future gift-giving occasion?

  2. I have to say I love my Woolee Winder, but it is definitely an unnecessary, luxury purchase. What I am waffling on right now is a Louet Victoria, because it would be so much easier to bring to SOAR than my Lendrum, but I am recently retired so on a tighter budget. OHOH I am getting a nice tax refund this year, so stay tuned.

    This topic makes me think about what my late mother used to say, whenever I bought something she thought I didn’t really need: “Without THAT your grandparents wouldn’t leave Brezeva,” meaning that my immigrant grandparents would leave the shtetl with only the most important things they could carry.

    1. But it lasts forever. I need to replace my iPad every three years. Think about it. Cellphones, fitbits, even tvs. Heck, even cars! A spinning wheel will outlast all of those things. And you can pass it on. Or trade it so you can leave Brezeva!

      My mom pulls uses that argument all of the time. But I’m happier than she will ever let herself be.

      1. I don’t think she’d have said it about a spinning wheel, but maybe would have about a Woolee Winder. Regardless, she died over 22 years ago and I don’t let it get to me. It’s more of a funny memory. I buy what I want and I’m glad you do, too!

  3. Love my Wooly Winder and I too own a Robin spinning wheel which was great till some broke in my house and broke it. The numbers I have for the man I. Man that makes neither the mobile number I have or the ones on the we?bsite are functioning as they are all disconnected. Any change you know how to get in touch with him or anyone that can repair the wheel

  4. Oy, the source of an angry and otherwise emotional exchange with my husband not too very long ago was over my impulse purchase of ChiaGoo’s super deluxe interchangeable needle complete set. They are very difficult to come by as some of your flock here may know. I only knit with ChiaGoo and do have a set of their previous interchangeable set. However (wait for it), a local online shop emailed to inform me that they had one set available and was I interested. Thinking it could be a belated birthday and early Chanukah gift for myself, I caved and plunked down the $300.00. Second “oy:” Though the needles themsleves were perfection (and the gorgeous packaging!), the tiny holes that allow the needles to be tightly fastened to the chords were rather rough and caused the yarn to snag on them. All the frigging time. It was then that I foolishly mentioned how much I spent on the set to said husband who proceeded to become unhinged about the purchase which, or course, led to all sorts of grievances. Fortunately, I was able to return the set for a full refund as the folks sent it back to ChiaGoo-land as defective. Whew. Thank you, Dr. Joe and others for listening. Such affordable therapy this is.

    1. I love Chia Goo. To the point that I am getting rid of my other needles. And btw that definitely sounds like a defect. The way I look at it is that they’re tools. Just like carpentry or landscaping or auto… it’s an investment. When I put it in those terms my husband totally, and I mean totally gets it. This thing called knitting is my everyday joy. I’ve knitted for more years than we’ve been together. That will be 20 years in May. Now I’m thinking of a Chia Goo set. I’ve bought them piecemeal. I love that blue and white thingy they come in. Sigh…

  5. I bought the Woolie Winder and have never looked back. The way the fiber winds on the spool has more than made up for the cost. Plus I get more wool on the spools. However, I bought an antique wheel for $350 that I deeply regret. What was I thinking? I got a jumbo mother of all for my Lendrum. What for? A lace one too. Why? I was at the beginning / middle of my journey. I got a carding machine that thankfully I was able to sell on. I learned that I did not like preparing fiber. I also don’t like color blending that much. So far pre blended rovings satisfy the itch. Every time I see hand cards I think about it. I do. I pick them up every single time. But the price point, which is totally reasonable, is just not for me. It doesn’t mean I don’t try new things. I just don’t have to have everything.

  6. I used to joke that I had to take out a third mortgage to pay for my nine complete sets of DyakCraft interchangeable needles. However, every time I break a set out of their Twig & Horn case, like a chef unrolls their knives or a surgeon scrubs up with their scalpels, my needles declared to the world that I considered myself to be a professional knitwear designer who required precision tools of the highest quality. I am proud to be able to say that I “knit exclusively with DyakCraft needles” and to then add that statement to my official designer profile

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