Caution: This is a Rant!!
So...I belong to a few fiber groups on FB. This morning I get a notice from one that someone posted something. Hmmm....I haven't read anything from that group in a long time....think I'll check it out.
Whoaaaa.....Nellie!!! I just about fell off the chair. And here's why:
This happens to be a page where you can advertise your fibers, yarns and knitted items for sale. Well....this person is advertising 5# of Cormo roving for.....wait for it........$83.00 a # !! WHAT???? Am I crazy or has the whole world (read: fiber community) gone NUTS????? $83.00 a # for Cormo???? AND...it didn't matter if you bought a few ounces or the 5#s....the price was the same, roughly $5.50 and ounce. AN OUNCE, people.
Cormo is a very common sheep, right there with Corriedale , BFL and others. This was not dyed....not blended with silk or cashmere. Yeah, it was roving; yeah, it was commercially processed; yeah, she said it was free of vm and very soft (21 microns).....but.....COME ON !
Now there happened to be about 40 comments. One responded...."what, is it... gold??" But surprisingly, most of them were very interested in the fiber and thought it was a great price....it was "market" price, and not out of line in any way, so they commented.
Ladies and gentlemen, I purchase my fiber from wool festivals, 1 or 2 small dealers, but mostly from a wholesale provider in Washington state. In recent months, I have bought 15#s total of beautiful white Corriedale and Cheviot top. It spins like butter and takes dye fantastically. I bought it on sale....$14.00 per #. The more you buy, the cheaper the price. One pound started at $18.00. I've been a customer for many years and purchased many different wools, including Merino top....never paid $5.50 an ounce.
See, this happened years ago when I started canning our home grown veggies and fruits out of necessity to feed our family. We moved from the suburbs of an Eastern state to a very rural area in mid-country.
Nobody canned since 1950, except maybe those who lived on farms with 8 - 10 children. But not surburban-raised homemakers. Within a few years, the price of canning jars, canners, and all the paraphernalia went through the roof!! Why? Because there was a big movement going on, "Back to basics" and all those nouveau riche, upandcoming, drinking the "Kool-Aid" urbanites, who thought it would be a kick, got into canning. It blew my mind, as well as my budget.
The same thing happened when I started quilting. Fabric, thread, patterns, and all were very affordable. Then the quilting craze started by...you know who....and BAM....prices hit the ceiling again. $8.00 for a yard of fabric?? $3.00 for a spool of thread?? $30.00 for a cutting mat or rotary cutter or rulers or patterns???
When I started spinning some 18 years ago, my first wheel cost $175.00. It was an Ashford. I just about choked, but knew it was a good investment. You can't hardly touch a wheel for under $400.00 these days...and that's a cheap one. Why?? Spinning fiber and making yarn is all the rage now. People boast about their $700 - $800 - $1,000 wheels. I now own 3 wheels, purchased over these many years. And all on sale. The total for all 3 would be about $1,000. I use them constantly. I cherish each one. I keep them in fine working order. I know their value and I value them.
What is going on today? Is everyone on the "Greed Train" or are people becoming totally brainwashed as to the increasing price of things; how much they can charge for something; how much money they can make.
I've sold handmade crafts and my hand spun, hand dyed, hand knitted items for year. The comment I hear most often is "you don't charge enough for your items". Well, you know what? If I make a small profit, if I love what I do, if my prices are something just about everyone can afford, if you love and appreciate what you purchased from me, then it's all good. I'm happy. You're happy.
I think it's time to stop all the craziness. Money. Money. Money. When are we going to regain our common sense? Where does it end?
I'll keep doing my part. I shop around for the best prices and supplies; buy when on sale; in bulk when necessary. If I sell knitwear, it's a price I've never had anyone quibble about. And people are happy.
That's it. Just had to get it out. But I'm still flabbergasted.
texture and test-knitting
4 weeks ago