I went to the Long Island sale, too. I bought two bags of Lana because...well, because it was 100 grams of 100 percent wool each, at less than two dollars a ball. they had it in black, I wear black, I intend to make some felted slipper things in black, case closed. I got two bags. That is 2,604 yards of Worsted Weight wool for twenty bucks. Even though this is not quite as good as the already-knit intarsia wool sweater that had maybe been worn once before I bought it at the Salvation Army on Saturday for four dollars, it is close. And even though the wool may not be Rowan, it is easily good enough for felting, and what do I buy in the store anyway?
When I buy new it is acrylic off the rack in K-Mart, hopefully marked down to "an additional 70 percent off our already low sale price..." Two balls of Patons Classic Wool on sale in ACMoore today would have cost me eight dollars. So...if I use five balls out of the twelve I come out ahead, even if moths get the other seven.
(even though some days I am the windshield, those moths never seem to be the bug, you know?)
I also bought 18 balls of Moda-Dea Cartwheel, which is a thick and thin sort of variegated hot pink. I had bougth one ball in the store last week that I playes with and liked, so I figured why not - they told me three bags would be enough for a sweater.
It was really nice that while I was chatting with the store manager he mentioned all the years I have been shopping there - all the years and all the wool. Our sons are about the same age, and I think they were three when I started - mine is 15 now. Wow.
Anyway, for those who do not know, Smiley's is a yarn store under an Elevated rail line in Queens. The store is very plain, and very full of yarn. They have an extensive selection of a range of things. They carry alpaca, they carry some Reynolds yarns, they carry closeouts and they carry a bit of everything. And, in a city where many yarn stores can get snooty about people who are not willing to spend an exhorbitant amount of money on EACH of 27 balls of yarn for a sweater, they are not snotty. If you go in and buy a 79 cent ball of acrylic, they thank you. If you spend 150 on a huge pile of yarn that you have to carry out in two black plastic trashbags, they thank you. I can vouch for this because I have done both. The shopping baskets are the larger size laundry baskets, and on sale days it is not unheard of to need two.
What exactly they carry has changed somewhat over the dozen years I've been shopping there. It does not carry everything, it does not worry about what is being featured in this month's magazines, and on a non-sale day it may not be terribly exciting. I love it, though, on any day of the week.