I have been thinking about getting a yarn subscription for awhile. And by awhile- I mean almost two years. I have also been stalking the groups for each of the major ones on Ravelry, and narrowed my choices by going back to the reveals of what was in each box. I counted up how many months I liked and discarded the subscription services I liked the least. I was left with KnitCrate and Yarnbox. Both had at least six boxes out of twelve that I liked each year, plus an option to trade/sell the boxes I didn’t like in Ravelry forums.

All that was left is to make the jump and start a subscription. Easier said than done.

Yarnbox monthly is $36.95 + shipping
Yarnbox bi-monthly (every other month) is $39.95 + shipping
Knitcrate monthly is $49 + shipping
Knitcrate NEWBIE monthly is $45 + shipping

Now the obvious choice to try would be Yarnbox, since it’s over $10 cheaper than the regular KnitCrate. However- Yarnbox does not have the option to TRY a box. There is a difference between seeing pictures of what comes in each shipment, and having the actual shipment in your hands. Two to three times a year- KnitCrate offers a Try-A-Crate. That is you pay for ONE shipment to see if you like it. And this is what I tried. That offer also came with a code for a free bag to go with it, so I used the code as well. I paid $54 (and some change, which includes shipping) to try a crate.

Here is what came in my shipment:

Yarn: Owool Balance Bulky in Travertine colorway – 50% cotton/50% merino wool, 106 yards per skein.

Yeah- I’m not going to include the word ORGANIC (as it is in the description), because organic just basically means NOT MAN-MADE. It is alive, or it once was alive. That’s organic. That may not be what organic means to YOU, but please know that there is no regulation on using that word, so even things filled with pesticides can be called organic. Anyway- back to the yarn- I looked online at O-Wool.com, and that type of yarn normally sells for $12.25 a skein. And there are FOUR SKEINS! That means the yarn BY ITSELF is the same as the price of the crate. That’s an excellent start.

Patterns: Drydock Cowl and High Fructose Shawl — both are free at o-wool.com.

Extras: Project 7 Gourmet Gum (flavor: Coconut Lime) and Digital Finger Tally Counter

The Finger Counter is $10 at KnitCrate and the Project 7 gum is $21.88 on Amazon (box of 12 packs, so that’s about $1.83 a pack)

You also get promo codes for $10 off a KnitCrate subscription (that’s $10 off the first month), buy 1 get 1 free off of a certain designer on Ravelry, 10% off an order at Grittyknits.com, 20% off another designer’s patterns on Ravelry, and 20% off a certain Knitter’s Pride interchangeable needle set.

The yarn is not exactly my color- I’m not really an orange person, BUT it’s soooo nice and soft. And it reminds me of Thanksgiving. All turkey-colored and yummy. The finger counter will come in handy as I needed another one. Plus- it’s not as big as some of the digital finger counters I’ve seen. I don’t want the gum. Not that I don’t think it’s good- it’s just that my Hubby is highly allergic to aspartame, so I don’t like to have it in the house.

So having said that, based off this box:

Pros: The yarn will cover the price of the box. That means the higher price is still worth it. And you don’t have to feel the need to keep the extras, if you don’t like them.
Cons: The way subscriptions work. You sign up in November, but you won’t receive your first box till December. Yes, I know that this is to make sure that there is enough yarn stock on hand to cover all the shipments for that month, but if you sign up on November 2nd- you have a looooooong wait for your box. That also means you could possibly be charged twice (once in November and once in December), before you get your first shipment. It will all even out in the end, but that’s a lot of anxious waiting.

So- if you decide to try a KnitCrate subscription- I would advise subscribing after the 25th. Credit cards are charged on the first of the month, and then the shipment goes out around the 10th of the month.

I don’t know if the Try-A-Crates work the same way. I know that I ordered it on the 5th, and received it Sunday, the 15th. I was worried that I would have to wait until the 15th of December, but it came promptly, so I am happy.

And if I decide to start a subscription, I will need to do a fair amount of destashing/charity scarves to make room for all the new yarn.