Cheap versus expensive

Today I got inspired and got the idea to cast on a new cardigan for Me Made. I was going to use stash yarn but the question of which yarn arose. Since it’s for Me Made it’s silly to use something super fancy, the cardigan will be covered in spit or worse and will be outgrown in just a few weeks. But the feeling of fancy yarn though, oh man.

That got me thinking. I know and I’ve met a lot of knitters who prefer cheaper yarn. Who either go for the 10 SEK per yarn ball at the cheap warehouse (which mostly means non-natural fibers) or the cheaper brands of natural fibers. There is nothing wrong with that and I admit to sometimes use the cheaper brands of natural fibers myself, as long as the yarn company is a an honest one, but I don’t get mad when yarn costs money (yes, I’ve met people who get mad when the lovely hand dyed merino costs more than the bulk yarn from the cheaper brand), and I don’t like it when people say I’m crazy for buying more expensive yarn or try to bully me into going for the cheap acryllic.

So why don’t I always knit with the cheaper stuff? Why have I knit baby cardigans in hand dyed merino? Well, the answer is pretty simple. For me, the process of knitting is more important than the finished object. I love knitting, not just the finished item. I love knitting more than I love the thing I’ve knit (which I also love quite a lot) and that’s why I go for the more expensive yarn. I love the feeling of it in my hands, the softness of it, the certain flare it adds to the project. It’s a wonderful feeling to work with great materials, that is true for both yarn and needles and all other stuff. I don’t want to spend hours and hours working on a cardigan that doesn’t feel good in my hands. That’s not a good start for a relationship and I probably won’t like the finished cardigan.

I meet a lot of people who knit out of obligation. They don’t want to knit but they feel that they have to. They go for cheaper yarn, which I can totally understand, but I can’t help but think that they might enjoy it more if they worked with other materials. Of course, expensive doesn’t necessarily equal better but when it comes to yarn it often does. Not always but quite often. To me, the yarn quality is really important and the feeling of using yarn that is a delight to work with can’t be described.

So, for this cardigan, which yarn should I use? I’m not saying that the pink yarn to the left in the picture is bad, absolutely not, but I am saying that the yarn to the right will be nicer to work with. However, this time I will pick the pink, cheaper yarn. I’m thinking of making quite a few different versions of this cardigan if Me Made likes it and I figure I can make a first prototype in the pink yarn, just to see if it works and if it will be worn and evaluate if I like the pattern. I have also rubbed it against Me Made’s belly to see if it’s acceptable and I believe it is. If it turns out to be a success, I will bring out the merino though.