I'm beginning to think I don't belong on this site with all the designers, spinners, and guy who have access to great yarns. I work with yarn from Wal-Mart and Jo-Annes. Free patterns from the internet are my muse. I have no one to knit for, and no one to knit with. you all are so lucky.


albert's picture

Bosh! (and I use this delightful Brit-ism with a fading Boston accent). My little Irish grandma taught me to knit 50 years ago and in that time I have used all qualities of yarns from all sources. I have never had a "knitting companion" in the flesh but have drawn great inspiration and sustenance from the fine folks on this site. All that matters is that you enjoy yourself, explore, and grant yourself the freedom to be creative and to grow in this wonderful medium.

Crager12080's picture

You are not alone in what you knit, or how you purchase your supplies. I am still knitting scarves and my yarn comes from begging and ebay. I found a site called and they have cool stuff. The men here are very nice and they support you for what you are doing. The cool thing about this site is sharing what you are doing or what you have done. Don't be discouraged or embarrassed because you do not spin your own yarn or because you can not knit a sweater yet, you will. But until then, we support each other! Cheers!

Tom Hart's picture

Hi Terry,

I suspect MOST of the guys in this group do not have anyone to knit with. Especially guys like yourself who do not live in a big city. I AM lucky in that regard. I've got a great little group that I knit with on Sunday afternoons at a cafe here in San Francisco. As far as the yarns go, I think I use pretty much the same ones as you (although occasionally I'll use twine...imported, of course). As far as people to knit for, count your blessings. When people ask me to knit something for them I'm only just now learning to say, "Why don't I show you how to knit so you can make it yourself? It's very easy..." If you're honestly looking for people to knit for, call a local soup kitchen or homeless shelter. With the kind of winter weather they have in your neck of the woods, I'm sure mittens, scarves and hats would be in high demand right about now.

I am neither a designer nor a spinner. I've only been knitting for 3 years. But it's enough to qualify me to belong to this group. That and my Y chromosome, I suppose. Someone with your wealth of experience in the craft is a very valuable part of this group, indeed. Quite a few of us are new at this so it's very helpful for us to have people like yourself around who've been there and done that.

All the best, Tom

CLABBERS's picture

Thy guys on this site are wonderful knitting companions. I know it's different to be able to sit and knit and bitch and and and...that just doesn't happen as often as we like. We are oddities in the fiber world and I am SO glad I am. I do have my wife and son for whom I knit many things, as well as a couple coworker's kids, but largely I am a lone knitter with my wife doing her counted cross stitch in the same room. I have made a wonderful friend about 140 miles north of me (I'm in Chicago area and he is in the Appleton, WI area), and we have gotten together once in Milwaukee and plan to do that again this coming week. I wish we could get together more, but family, work, personal illness, and distance really does prevent that. He is a wonderful man whom I met here and I am so lucky to maintain a friendship off site through emails, texts, and the very rare face-to-face time.

I have been lucky to knit with some beautiful yarns, but I have never purchased them myself. The stuff I buy is largely acrylic-based so never very expensive. In fact, I am a huge fan of Caron yarn sold at JoAnn Fabrics. It's very inexpensive and goes a very long way. I made my mom a short shrug using 2 skeins, and I made my wife a 1/4 sleeved shrug with 4 skeins of the simply soft yarn. It is supple to the touch even before washing. After washing, it rivals much more expensive merino wools. Kudos to the folks at Caron International Yarns.

If you ever get to Chicago, give me a buzz. I'll be happy to get together with you for a knitting session. I knit for myself. I find it incredibly therapeutic and and artful distraction to the buzz of the middle school teaching environment. Even though I am a very social person, the solitary art of knitting helps me make sense of the rest of the world while adding a bit of peace and calm to my own.

Keep clicking those needles as you have since you were 14. I'm sure the body of your work is impressive. I'd love to see it sometime. Do you have things on Ravelry?

Peace, bro! (I don't really talk like that. LOL)


AKQGuy's picture

I would love to have none but myself to knit for! Of course with that said I tend to be the one making myself knit for others.

As for some of our fiber snobbery (I promise, I'm one of the worse), it only hurts ourselves and our wallets. Don't let our hang ups reflect on your choice of yarns. If you enjoy using them then do so! If it's what is within your budget, the congrats on making what you can work for you.

As for the knitting with others, it as most things has its ups and downs. I enjoy knitting with my group, and I don't live in a large city, but am determined to find others in my area who enjoy fiber as much as I. I also enjoy not knitting with my group, away from the distractions of other pretty things and the questions that inevitably get asked and the occasional debates that can arise from such questions.

In other words, you are a man that knits. You belong here. Don't let what others do deter you in your craft. Enjoy it and please, if able post it here so we can enjoy it too. I think you will find much support, praise, and joy here. Regardless of those here who design their own works, create their own yarns, and play with intricate patterns you will find plenty who don't and most who are willing and wanting to support, raise up, and praise all members here.

Keep knitting!

daveballarat's picture

I think you might actual be more typical of the guys here than you realize. I'm living in Istanbul, Turkey. I know 2 other guys in this city of 20million but as there are so many people, transport is an issue. So I don't get to see them, so I am a lone knitter too. I have a wonderful support on this site in Joe. I've chatted to a few others as well from time to time, so being alone doesn't necessarily mean you are a lonely knitter. I do tend to knit in wool however I am soooooo slow that it is ok. I am surrounded by a sea of acrylic here in Turkey but wool with interesting other fibers added are here too.
Keep in touch


raydio's picture

You belong here regardless of what fiber you knit with, regardless of for whom (or not) you knit.

I've been knitting for a long time and could never afford anything but (usually cheap or on sale) synthetic yarn. Currently, I don't have that much disposable income, so I save up for "the good stuff" (usually wool). I sacrifice other things I'd like to buy in favor of yarn when I have a project in mind.

Fortunately, I have many other interests that occupy my time, so I don't always HAVE to be knitting. Thank god. I also like to read and the time spent is very satisfying. I garden, I surf the internet for (far too many) HOURS at a time, I play guitar, take part in local theater and so on.

I have people I could knit for, but they don't ask me to and I don't want to knit a design they might not like so I don't knit garments for them. It's like not having anyone to knit for in a way. I have knitted toys for my young relatives and things like wash cloths, pillows and market bags for the older folk. Usable, practical things over wearables.

If you want to knit for others, there are lots charities and such that you could knit for. Hospitals accept knitted acrylic caps for "premies", there's the shawl ministry, one making cover-ups for penguins, wool helmet liners for soldiers and warm wool socks for seamen on submarines, warm garment for the homeless or destitute would seem to be much appreciated and so on. Some might even supply you with yarn.

Look around. Check with your local groups, activity centers, United Way, yarn shop, church etc. They may have a project going. I think Michael's stores did an afghan square project. Oh, that reminds me-- there's that "sends hand-knit and crocheted blankets and sweaters, vests, hats, mittens, and socks to the beleaguered people of Afghanistan." Check with the Red Cross. And so on.

Somebody out there wants your knitting.


Joe-in Wyoming's picture

Just adding my own thoughts and encouragements to the others.

My motto has always been "Work with the best materials you can afford." That means you use acrylic for some things and wool for others. But the main thing is to enjoy what you knit and that is the most important thing. If you are happy with the finished piece, that is the number one fact to judge it by. After all, it is your work.

As for buying more posh up for it as you can. That's what I normally do. [Or use birthday money.] And check out local thrift shops, garage sales, etc. as you can get some amazing finds: I once found a bag full of balls of Scottish cashmere at a St. Vincent de Paul shop for a couple of dollars. And you can get some nice knitting needles that way, also.

Our site is all about knitting and the men who enjoy it. I happen to spin, weave, crochet, and enjoy all other kinds of fiber related crafts, but that is just who I am. As for can be fun but that is just another part of knitting. For some of us, but not all. So don't let that discourage you. Someday, you may see a way to knit something up that no one else has...that will make you a designer, too - should you wish to call yourself that.

I knit in isolation for many years and mainly joined Men Who Knit and, later, Ravelry so I could tap into a larger community of men who knit and have a social group that I can share ideas and thoughts with. I have been lucky to rejoin into our local fiber community - after a long break away - but this has only been relatively recent. Growing out of that is charitable knitting, but mainly I knit for myself, family and friends. But the main thing - as I said before - is to enjoy your knitting.

Sorry to recap all of the views of the others but, please, remember that I am proud to have you in our community of knitters and look forward to hearing your thoughts and ideas as we all move forward with our craft/art.

Books, knitting, cats, fountain pens...Life is Good.

scottly's picture

We all evolve. The more you knit and the better you become the more you will ask of the materials you use and the patterns you choose to execute. When I first came to MWK I thought all these guys who Knit lace were just plain odd - what's a guy gonna do with lace? Not but a few years later knitting lace has become a passion of mine. As for "yarn snobbery", its not really snobbery at all, it's about choosing the correct material for the project. Inexpensive Wal-Mart yarn has its limitations, mainly that it won't hold a block.

So don't despair, learn.

MMario's picture

Check out WEBS for some affordable yarns - online ordering and great service.

MMario - I'm not divorced from reality - we're having a trial separation