The Spinner’s Guide to Black Friday

There has never been a better time to be a fiber lover on Black Friday. Whatever you're doing on this unusual holiday, take some time to enjoy the pleasures of yarn this week.

Anne Merrow Nov 24, 2020 - 4 min read

The Spinner’s Guide to Black Friday Primary Image

Photo by Karolina Badzmierowska on Unsplash

More than any time since the term was coined, this Black Friday is a day to stay at home and spend some quality time with yarn and thread. Here are some ideas for how to spend the day (after you've checked out the sales at your favorite fiber sites).

1. Find color in your cooking scraps! Turn food waste into natural dye.


Dinner, or dyestuff? Photo credits (clockwise from top left): Monika Grabkowska, Margarita Zueva, and FOODISM360 on Unsplash

Surprise! The waste from many Thanksgiving foods—including pomegranate skins, onionskins, walnut hulls, and green carrot tops—make excellent natural dyes. You might be surprised: Pomegranate skins yield greenish color, and carrot tops make a bright yellow. Save these from the trash or compost pile, read up on how to dye with natural dyes, and prepare a dyebath. The most popular mordant used these days is something else you might find in your kitchen, alum (for pickling), though you’ll save money by buying it from a dye source.

2. Plan your handmade holiday gifts.

While the rest of your house is sleeping off a food coma or shivering in line, use the peace and quiet to fill out your holiday gift-knitting calendar. With a month left, don’t overcommit—and choose materials you enjoy so this will be a treat for you, too.

3. Air Your Stash.

It’s so easy for years to go past without some yarn and fiber ever seeing the light of day. If you have a long weekend, lock everyone out of your craft space and spread everything out. Destash what no longer speaks to you, delight in forgotten treasures, and look closely for signs of insect damage. Bonus: When you’re done, you can put everything back in a more organized—and compact— arrangement. That brings us to . . .

4. Make your wish list.

Moment of Zen-Satisfaction

Illustration by Ann Swanson.

A gift that supports your fiber habit just keeps on giving: It supports the makers who bring you delightful supplies. It makes you happy. Your happiness spreads to the people around you. And if they’re very, very lucky, they might receive something handmade. It’s a virtuous yarn circle. And now that you’ve made a little room, there’s room for a special braid of fiber or skein of yarn. Pattern downloads and videos take no space at all. You don’t really want any more plastic geegaws, do you?

5. Eat pie for breakfast.


Photo by Element5 Digital on Unsplash

Take advantage of not traveing this year to enjoy a meal of leftovers, stake out the most comfortable spot on the couch, and spin, knit, crochet, or weave to your heart’s content.

—Anne Merrow

Originally opublished November 16, 2018. Updated November 23, 2020.