"Handmade versus Homemade, the Details that Make the Difference In Your Hand-worked Project"

Have you ever contemplated the difference between “handmade” and “homemade”? Or the difference between a “hobby” and a “passion”? Knitting and crocheting are a passion for us here at Knit & Pearls in Avon, CT. We recognize that there is precious time and resources committed when taking on new knitting or crocheting project and we strive to have the best yarn, needles and instruction to ensure that the final project is a beautiful “handmade” project, cherished by the recipient! No matter what project you are choosing, starting with the right pattern, yarn, and needles is essential

When choosing a pattern, remember not all patterns are created equal. Whether it is a free pattern or one for purchase, make sure that it is written by a well respected designer or company. On our Facebook page, we post a weekly newsletter that features fun and current new projects. In addition we also constantly post online the finished work of our customers. So many patterns of varying challenge levels, completed by “real” people! Another great resource is a website designed with the knitter/crocheter in mind. There you can easily search for a pattern and see how many projects have been posted and what the knitters/crocheters comments are. Too few finished projects posted or too many negative comments about the style/fit, etc., move on to the next pattern. There are too many great ones out there to be futzing around with a dud!! Once the pattern is identified, review it for terms or techniques that may not be clear. To become a more proficient knitter/crocheter, it’s great to challenge yourself with each project. If you find a pattern that proves to be so challenging that you are stalled at every turn and it will most likely end up in the “time out corner” more times that you want!

Found the right pattern? Now on to the yarn!! There are so many options to choose from so we recommend visiting your Local Yarn Shop (LYS). What you will find at your LYS, and that you will not experience on-line, is a “hands-on” experience. This experience will include the opinions and guidance of the knowledgeable sales staff (as well as any other knitters in the building – you long-timers know that is true!) plus the ability to touch and feel the yarn. Colors, fiber content, drape, sheen, weight…so many variables to consider and that’s half the fun! Don’t live near a LYS? Traveling and need something sent to you? Then the next best option is to find an LYS with an ecommerce platform for the best online yarn store. This is a great combination of the flexibility of internet buying combined with a real LYS feel. Whether shopping on line or in the physical store, LYS’s stock quality yarn and accessories because their reputations depend on this quality. A quantity over quality strategy, that is the model of some of the Big Box stores, just won’t fly here in the yarn world!

Hopefully what is clear is that to end up with a beautifully finished project of high quality it is essential to start with the right tools and quality products. Utilize the expertise of your LYS or online yarn store, to ensure you are starting off on the right foot.

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