Thursday, January 26, 2006

Debbie Bliss hell

i have decided,
after not so careful consideration,
to enter The 2006 Knitting Olympics.
Why, you ask? …
considering how much work i have to do on my research?…
Why, pray tell, do i need to
add something else on my list of things to do?
Well… i have this project…
i am sure most of you can identify…
that has been plaguing me for quite some time….

the Debbie Bliss
moss-stitch slippers
from hell:

i have set every possible deadline…
but i dread them because
i hate the pattern and
i have torn them up
so many times…
but grub keeps pestering me
about them…
“when i am i going to get
my red Debbie Bliss slippers?”
i hear this at least once a month…
more often if any one of
the aforementioned dates are near…
it’s my fault, I never should have let
grub purchase simple living for me…
grub’s interest in these slippers was enticing…
would they actually be worn???
(never wears the checkerboard birthday scarf
over which i labored countless hours)…

hell or high water…
i will pass my exams this semester
AND finish the DB slippers from hell!
which leads me to another rant…

why Debbie Bliss bugs me:

1. Her patterns drive me up the wall.
If i take the trouble to buy her book
AND i even stoop so low as to buy her yarn
for the project,
can she PLEASE put row numbers in her patterns…
especially when the pieces are suppose
to fit carefully together
and you are knitting moss stitch
on size 5 needles
with loads of increases, decrease,
and knit 2 togethers?...
“next row” doesn’t cut it…
i need to know that i am
doing increase in the RIGHT row…
come on Debbie, please?!

2. The Debbie Bliss demographic.
Are most knitters relatively wealthy
white, straight people?
How can you have the audacity
to publish a book called simple living
with a cabled throw
made from 20,
yep 20, balls
of DB cashmerino…
at ~$14/ball…
what kind of simple is that?
simply living with a corporate lawyer
or maybe a banker…?!?

3. Debbie Bliss is the Whole Foods of the knitting world.
The yarn, like the store,
is not meant for the lower-income earners…
the CEO of Whole Foods, John Mackey,
recently was quoted by The Independent (UK) as saying
"You can't have it both ways.
If you want the highest quality, it costs more.
It's like complaining that a BMW is more expensive than a Hyundai.
Yes, but you're getting a better car."
Do you really get a better product?
Or are you buying into that income bracket?
i admit it…
i like her patterns and,
like a lot of you i imagine,
i buy cheaper yarn and use the patterns…
or just look at her books as the eye candy
that they are…
but it’s the principle of it…
who she is marketing to…
when I saw the cover
of her latest book, Home,
I squealed (yes, I squealed) right there
in Debbie Bliss headquarters,
aka Knit Happens
that red and pink polka dotted blanket
had my name all over it…
but then I looked inside and
of course the pattern
called for 19 balls of each color!
then the rant welled up inside of me.

No Debbie Bliss,
i will finish your slippers.
And then, after our brief
and very stormy relationship,
it's over...
i will not be enticed
by your wiles any longer!

back to my cascade 220
and sale bin yarns...
it is so much more satisfying
to make a project that
is both inexpensive
and beautiful...
like an amazing find
at value village.


Beta said...

Wonderfully said :) It's like the never-ending aran sweater. I paid SOOO much money for that yarn because I was rash and didn't shop around for a substitute on the yarn it called for. Noro Cash Iroha - stunning, but not really worth the price.

Knitroglycerin said...

Amen! I just got the same pattern book and have been drooling over many items, but when I saw what the cabled throw called for I almost rolled on the floor laughing.

Whatever happened to the idea that you knit because it's an inexpensive way to make things yourself? Obviously we're competing with cheap textiles from Asia, but even setting that aside, some yarns are just prohibitive. What you said is not a rant, it's common sense!

just me said...

You are so right! I was enticed by a knit-along to make a sweater from her Alpaca Silk book, but I used different yarn, albeit Bliss yarn, but off the net.

Then, since the pattern book was so expensive (I later learned that Knit + Stitch = Bliss added $3.00 to the normal price for that little booklet!), I was feeling like I should make another sweater from there.

Finally, I have decided that no, I will not, it's not worth the kazillion balls of expensive yarn (although I'd never do a sweater in alpaca silk) for a sweater that isn't even that great (and if it is that great one wouldn't know from the pictures she provides!).

Actually, I thought you'd also rant about no schematics but maybe with slippers that doesn't matter.

knit on!