While knitting a pair of fingerless gloves for myself, I started asking myself whether they would be too small for my big ol' hands. And if they were, what the hell would I do with them? I figured out what I would do (give them to a friend), but an idea presented itself to me. What do other knitters do in this situation?
Let's take a hypothetical situation. Knitter A in San Francisco agonizes over a lovely wool cardigan for 6 months only to realize that what mild irritation she felt while knitting it would bloom into a full allergic reaction while wearing it. Knitter B in the frozen tundra of Canada*, spends a good chunk of her time knitting a cardigan to keep her warm, only to realize that the acrylic she chose wasn't the best insulating material. What do those knitters do with their items? I mean, they're already knit up, and perfectly acceptable, but they can't wear them for whatever reason. I suppose some altruistic souls gives their knitwear away to charity, but my pessimism is acting up and I have a feeling that items like this usually end up buried in the closet/clothes drawer/under the bed/freezer/etc. And it leaves the knitter frustrated and with nothing to show for all their work.
So what I propose to solve this problem is that Knitter A swaps her cardigan for Knitter B's. Being knitters, they'd appreciate the work put into the garment, and most importantly, everyone would go home happy.
The way it would happen is that there would be a thread where people would post ads. The ads would include details about what they're swapping for (i.e. fiber used, measurements, possibly pictures, etc.). The ad would also mention what they'd be willing to swap it for (i.e. a similar item - but in a certain size, color, fibre, etc.) Someone would PM them to trade and when the swap was over, the ad would mention that the swap had been completed so no more attempts to swap for that particular item would be made. Is that making sense? Here's what it would look like on a thread.
Knitter A: I have a lovely red cardigan knit in 100% merino. The bust size is 40". However, I've become allergic to wool, so I can't wear it any longer. I'm looking for a cardigan knit with a plant fiber or an acrylic fiber, with a 40" bust, in red preferably (though I have no issues with other colors - except for neon green).
Knitter B (the knitter with the acrylic cardigan) would PM Knitter A about a possible swap for the rust-colored acrylic cardigan she made. Knitter A and B would work out the details as to sending out the packages. Once the swap was completed. Knitter A would add something like this to her ad to indicate the swap was closed and to avoid further confusion.
Knitter A: "Suitable replacement found, thanks to Knitter B!"
The Disappointed Knitter's Swap would be constant. People would just put up ads and wait for a PM to arrive. Some PMs might arrive later than sooner, but I'm optimistic enough that everyone's ad would eventually be answered. Of course, they would have to be practical in what they ask for. No one would swap a Dale of Norway fair-isle sweater that's too small for a garter stitch scarf in a color that's not liked. But overall, I think it's a good idea.
What do you guys think? Would you be willing to give it a try?
* A former Chicagoan, I thought I had winter down pat. Montreal proved me wrong. And apparently this was a warm winter!