|This design will get produced, just|
not by who initially said yes ...
Well, fast forward to March of this year. Yarns of Italy informed me that they hadn't yet received the yarn, didn't know when it would be delivered, didn't really have a suitable alternative, and had decided to scrap their original plans of marketing support for the design. Disappointed was I. However, I actually was equally disappointed in myself - I knew all of the facts, and I took a leap of faith. Ok, so much for that.
In March, I proposed a salvo that I was thought was incredibly gracious and very easy to say yes to - please provide me with some swatching yarn. I was still swatching for projects for the fall (although, admittedly, that was wrapping up fairly quickly), and swatching with the yarn might afford both of us some beneficial opportunities. Yarns of Italy was on board.
Well, I never received any swatching yarn, and of course chose other yarns for things that will be published by others later this year. Disappointed again was I. This time, definitely not with myself.
However, I tried one more time - I contacted Yarns of Italy, told them I had a design in mind, and would they want to support it with providing yarns that are already in their warehouse? I once again was told yes, and my YOI contact passed along the request to the person now handling all designer requests. That's happened. Still no response. Disappointed am I? No. This is par for the course. I just thought I'd give it one, last try.
I bring this up because while I wish I had been treated differently, it's symptomatic of a much deeper issue. YOI is a small company, and if I'm going to be completely fair (why do I always feel the need for fairness?) I can see their need to keep a tight reign on the marketing budget. However, the craft numbers tell a story that should lead people in the industry to a different set of actions.
Both The National Needle Arts Associates (TNNA) and The Craft and Hobby Association have conducted surveys and published their respective results. While Doris Chan has written about her analysis of the data, (and yes, the survey methodologies are like apples and oranges), there are some irrefutable truths:
* there are more households crocheting than knitting;
* 58% of the crocheters TNNA surveyed spend between $201 and $800 on their
craft in a year;
* one of the two most-requested "fresh and new" products TNNA
respondents indicated were crochet patterns (with cross-stitch being the
other most requested); and
* crocheters spend equally or just slightly more than their knitting counterparts on
patterns and books.
|One of the fresh cardi designs from VK's|
special crochet edition
Seeing how the recent Vogue Knitting crochet special edition has flown off the shelves, the last two points aren't a big surprise. It's also no surprise that fresh patterns sell yarn. Given all of this, you'd think YOI would have acted differently. Oh well.
There are some yarn companies that recognize the above, know that crocheters have many purchasing options, and speak directly to crocheters (as well as knitters!) with great yarns at affordable prices underscored by great design. Garnstudio/Drops Design has an amazing selection of yarn and an equally amazing pattern database; KnitPicks also has an excellent line of yarns and their IDP (independent designer program) supports both designers and designs. Those are just two of several.
So I put it to you dear reader: what are your favorite yarn lines? What do you crave in patterns? What myths or stereotypes does the above information shatter?