And apparently so has everyone else.
Ugly Christmas sweaters...the latest fashion craze...are getting harder to find. That is not to say that new ugly sweaters aren't being created, but those classic, vintage atrocities are pretty darn rare. Having been a young twenty-something in the late eighties/early nineties, I will admit to having purposely purchased said articles of clothing. Shoot, I even went so far as to have a goal of acquiring at least one Christmas (seemingly gorgeous at the time) sweater for every work day of the month of December. Naturally, these artistic pieces were coordinated with similar socks and velvet flats. What can I say? It was the thing to do...right up there with spiral perms, freeze hairspray for you giant do and Glamour shots.
Fast forward to the present time and my pressing need to acquire multiple ugly sweaters for an upcoming trip and planned "awkward family photo." Last week I scoured several Goodwill Stores in my area. Nothing. It was as if some marketing genius had an inside track and was hoarding them to open his own Ugly Sweater Store. At the last Goodwill I stopped in, I half heartedly perused the 50% off racks hoping against hope, when my hand grasped something that can not be described. It was so soft, it can only be experienced. Checked the label, snatched it off the hanger and proceeded to mentally do my own Lord of the Rings impression..."my precious." And what to your wondering eyes do you think I read on that label? Cashmere. 100% two ply cashmere. Women's size 1X. Do you know what this means????? (insert cheesy game show music while I wait) As a spinner that recognizes and honors the concept of reusing, all I could see was the hundreds and hundreds of yards of fiber that I could unravel, give a little soak, and ply back into a thickness of yarn I wanted...perhaps over-dying the yarn if I so chose.
As if that was not incredible enough to make me want to hop around and break out into my own Fiber Freak version of "Thrift Shop," it then dawned on me that I had just pulled this off the 50% off rack...thus making this pile of sinful softness a whopping $2.30. Yes, you read that right. SCORE!
Tonight, I stopped in at one more Goodwill Store on the way home, hoping against hope that maybe the sweater gods would shine on me and gift me not only with hideous apparel but mayyyybbbeee another cashmere piece of fluff that would want to come home with me, get all unravelled and transform into something else. I got half my wish...
It should be noted that there are varying degrees of quality of cashmere and these two sweaters demonstrate that difference. The pink one is infinitely softer, which tells me there is a definite difference in the micron count of the staple fiber, thus leading to difference in quality/softness. I.don't.care. I bought hundreds and hundreds and hundreds of yards of cashmere yarn for less than a total of $8.00. Unravelling will be a bit tricky to get started, but every fiberist knows that undoing goes so much faster than the doing.
Ugly Christmas sweaters? Found those too, but that triumph pales in comparison. So, I leave you with this: