Stitch Set is a monthly subscription box aimed at beginning knitters, although the projects are fun for more experienced knitters too. Each set contains everything needed to complete the project — yarn, pattern, needles, and even a pair of scissors. Subscriptions are $40/month.
In the December 2015 box was a mitten project and, advertised, the box had everything necessary to complete the project, plus a few extras! I was super excited to see what was in the box and get started.
Every project comes with a muslin bag or project sack. As the site notes, knitting is a project you often take with you and that is why it is packaged this way. To be honest, I didn’t really like the bag – I have my own knitting bag that I carry around the house with me, but I appreciated Stitch Set’s thought into this, especially for a beginning knitter without gear.
Instructions: The kit included instructions for the “ohsocozy” mittens; this pattern is available for purchase online ($3.90). Although the writing is small, the instructions are a nice size to carry around with the project and are laminated so they are more sturdy.
Because this was my first box, I also got a set of basic knitting instructions. And I mean super basic — how to cast on, how to knit, how to purl, and how to bind off. I didn’t need this level of instruction, as I already know how to knit…but the point is to encourage beginners to try these projects, so I guess it is helpful. Unfortunately, there were a couple things in the project instructions that I didn’t know how to do — specifically cable knit and magic loop. But the basic knitting instructions did not include anything about these techniques. I also looked on the Stitch Set blog for information about cable knitting and magic loop, but I didn’t find anything quickly, so I used the internet to provide the details I needed to complete the project. This wasn’t a problem for me, since I learned how to knit from the internet anyway, but I could imagine some people might find that intimidating. That said, the curator of the Stitch Set boxes says she is available for questions by e-mail. I just didn’t take her up on that offer.
Yarn: The kit included 2 skeins of Herrschner’s Chunky Yarn ($2.50 each) in a pretty blue color. Also included was a bit of “practice yarn,” which was nice because I learned a couple of knitting techniques I hadn’t used before. I was able to use the practice yarn before moving on to the actual pattern and provided project yarn.
Needles: The kit included the knitting needles required for the project — Clover Takumi Bamboo Size 9 Circular Needles 36″ ($12.00). Because this was the first box I received, I also got a set of Clover Takumi Bamboo Size 9 Single Point Needles ($6.00). I have never knitted with bamboo needles before; my sets are all metal. It was a nice change – they are super light and very smooth. I think I’ll keep using these with my other projects going forward.
Other Necessities: As the subscription box says, EVERYTHING you need to complete the project comes in the box, right down to a pair of scissors! In the December box, there were the craft scissors, a yarn needle, a cable needle ($4.25 for two), and a couple of stitch markers ($5.25 for a set of twelve). The notions came in a plastic bag without labels, so the prices and links provided are exemplary only. I didn’t care much about the scissors – as a knitter, I have scissors all over my house. But it was nice to get the yarn needle and stitch markers as I’m always misplacing those, and I have never cable knitted before, so I needed the cable needle to do this project. Even though I didn’t necessarily need most of these items, it was convenient for them to all come with the project, plus I can reuse them in my future knitting.
Extras: Included in the December box were a couple of tea bags (a nice touch) and a small skein of red yarn. I had no idea what the red yarn was for until I was looking on the Stitch Set blog for cable knit instructions. Although I didn’t find the instructions I was looking for, I learned about the “Little Hats, Big Hearts” program. The red yarn was included to encourage us to knit a little hat to donate to be given to babies born in the month of February to raise awareness about heart disease. The Stitch Set blog also includes a link to free pattern that can be used to knit one of these little hats, plus it can be done on the needles included — so basically two projects for the price of one.
Completed Project: What you probably really want to know is how it turned out. Here is the first of my two mittens; I haven’t completed the second yet because I wanted to get this review out to you, but I am happy with the first one and will get to work on the second one shortly. (I’ll also make the little red hat, because I love making donation projects like that.) The mitten project took me a couple of days of occasional knitting. Other than looking up how to cable and how to magic loop, I found the project to be perfectly suitable for a beginner — although probably more comfortable for an advanced beginner rather than a true newbie. Once I got going, though, it was very simple and fun. The mittens are super warm and I will actually use them (unlike some of my other knitting experiments). I also really enjoyed learning something new and ending up with a nice finished project. This is definitely my kind of box!
Looking Ahead: On the Stitch Set blog, the curator gives a preview of the next month’s project. The January Stitch Set box will be a Crosstown Buttoned Cowl. It looks interesting, although just from the picture, I think it may be more of an advanced beginner level project. One nice thing is that there are color options given – either yellow or blue. This is a nice touch, especially since the finished project is somewhat of a fashion statement.
Final note and disclaimer: Any differences between my mitten and the one pictured in the instructions and Stitch Set blog are likely due to my own errors and not the Stitch Set subscription box or the creator of the “ohsocozy” mitten pattern.
The Description: Receive A fun knitting project and everything that comes with it! Ranging from beginning to easy each set will include, pattern, yarn, needles, and any accessories (buttons, clasps, etc). In addition, you’ll find custom made instructions (with photos) for all techniques needed to complete the project.
The Price: $40.00 per month