Yarn Swift Obsession... Project Updates... and Photo Anxiety...

So... even though I have all of these projects waiting to be started/completed, I still manage to obsess over the one thing I really wanted, but didn't get for Christmas... a Yarn Swift... So I ordered one of the cheapo metal units going for about 35 bucks a couple days ago and it arrived today... Ewww... it's going back to Overstock.com.

My father always said... "You buy cheap, you buy twice." Boy he was right with this one... Unfortunately, thanks to life Post-College in less than ideal job market, I can't really justify or afford spending $230 on a handmade Cherry Wood Swift from Maine (no matter how Orgasmic the thought of knitting off of it would be!) So alas, here I am shopping for something affordable, durable, and nice enough for me to leave out for visitors to see.... If anyone can recommend a good one, I'm all ears!

Projects statuses from blog post 1... outlook not so good... 75% complete on the neck warmer... will post pictures as soon as it's ready, started one of the Mini Mochi Rainbow Beanies... none of the tote bags complete... my 9 to 5 is seriously getting in the way of my crafting!

Still trying to find a photo of myself that I like enough to post here... with all the supermodel headshots everyone has, it's kind of making it hard for me! Anyone know a good airbrusher? Hopefully I find something I like soon... I don't like being the faceless one in the bunch!


Bill's picture

there are some wonderful wooden one for about $40. that are criss-crossed pieces of wood on a base...with movable dowels to adjust to yarn skein size. Mine came from a woodworker in Oregon who sells at Stitches west.
Here's on on ebay for $22.99


found my guy...http://www.yarnswifts.com/

DeceptiveCookie's picture

I've seen these around, and they won't work for me. I don't have much table space in my room, and since I don't have a dedicated craft room, my dresser tops and rolling sewing machine cart are all the space I have. I'm actually currently using some Tinker toys I found at a thrift shop in a similar set up for the time being. I found directions online a few weeks ago at this blog:


murfpapa's picture

Oops! 3 a.m. and dead tired. Bill, I almost bid on that one last night but decided to look around more then got lost. Some of the ebay ones were nice but the shipping seemed to be excessive. Did you see the cast iron one??

MC D-Cookie, that Tinkertoy link is what I was looking for. I might be able to find Tinkertoy at my part-time job and maybe even marked down in the after Christmas bin. I'll have to look tomorrow.

Too tired for more research tonight...

murfpapa's picture

Ooooh, I didn't see that link when I first posted to this thread. I'm rethinking the Tinker Toy again. That's even simpler than the one I was devising in my head last night. Thanks, Bill!

murfpapa's picture

Ok, I'm usually looking for the cheapest way to go and I have been burned before. BUT..

I also have recently been looking at swifts, grimacing every time I see the price. After a while I started reminiscing about the Tinker Toys® I had as a child and how easy that would be to put one together, not to mention the pride swelled chest that I figured out how to make one myself.

Then I began thinking how flimsy it *might* be. I could just see it flying apart when it got spinning like a turbine, endangering the pets and anyone else nearby. Then I got to thinking of Erector Set® which I also had and how much sturdier it would be, held together by nuts and bolts.

After looking for a set on ebay, the cost and the time for shipping left me right back on wishes doorstep.

Then I found this...


and this:


and if you're a member of the knitting! group on Live Journal there is this:


None of these are elegant by any means but if they do the job...

I can just imagining having to improvise one of these MacGyver tools on a camping trip. If you can't afford a good one and need to save, these would work til you get enough for a good one.

DeceptiveCookie's picture

I nearly fell over laughing after seeing the wine bottle and livejournal attempts! The things we do for knitting... it's ridiculous sometimes! The tinker toy swift has been working okay for now... I have in my hands a Joann's coupon for 50% off one item and I'll probably be using it on a Lacis swift from their website... Unless anyone has had a bad experience with it... would love hear any feedback.

As for more DIY swifts I found this blog post recently about Lego's and K'Nex stuff... really makes me want to buy a couple sets and just try it out... but do I really need any more WIP's?


Bradferd's picture

I couldn't get over the price on one either. So I did buy tinker toys. And yes, it does work. I have only had it come apart once. But, I think that was my fault as I didn't push the pieces together in the sprocket thingy. The biggest thing I have had to worry about is the tail winding in the middle. That can cause some befuddlement. I will purchase a 'real' one when I stop buying yarn. I figure yarn is more important!!! LOL.

Bill's picture

If you do a search...Crafty Andy posted pics of a swift that he made.

scottly's picture

I purchased mine from KnitPicks and it's wonderful. It gets much use and they are going for 64.99 and the winder is 19.99. Still not "cheap" but the best price I could find.

As for your avatar pict please post somthing frumpy so I'm not so alone in my frumpyness.

ronhuber's picture

Check out www.schoolhousepress.com. They have plans for a swift designed by Elizabeth Zimmermann's husband for $3.50.

Craig's picture

You should have a look on Etsy they have handmade swifts starting at $20.00 US.

Have been knitting for years. I knit continually then will try another craft, but will return to the needles.

NonStopAndrew's picture

As for a swift and ball winder, I have never used them. I like the way the yarn comes or I sit and wind it into a ball myself.

As for our pics, I all have had many pics up. Some have been good, some have been cute, some (many) have not been so. We really don't care, we just want to see your face. You could also do what some have done, put up a pic of art, or a tattoo, or even something you knit.