Hunting in Canada

DH was in Ottawa, Canada on a business trip last week. You probably already know that while he was there he delivered all the neckwarmers that I knitted to Warm Hands Network. You also already know that we both looove thrift stores! So when DH decided he wanted some souvenir Canada t-shirts, he looked on-line to see where Ottawa’s Value Village store (same company as Savers in the U.S.) is located.

He was free until late in the day on Thursday, enough time to visit all three VVs in Ottawa – he likes to call them VVs – if necessary. Not only are there three VVs within the city limits, but another three in the greater Ottawa area!! Too bad he didn’t have the time to explore those as well.

DH, like most men, isn’t so much a shopper as a hunter and he went hunting with very specificgame in mind: Canada t-shirts and books on Canadian history, as well as another stainless steel travel mug, not necessarily Canadian. He found no shirts at the this VV, which was very close to his hotel.

But he did snag a ‘new’ travel mug for himself. Yay! There were several, at least eight, to pick from, but he liked the color and bargain price of this one best.

He had no idea just how good of a deal that was until he got home and I found out that this particular Timolino mug sells for $26.00 at the Bridgehead coffee website!

Having seen the pictures I took of the yarn walls at Savers in MA and CT, he just knew that I would want to see this amazing collection of yarn! Boy, was I surprised when he emailed me these pictures that he took with his phone!! I have never known him to notice anything in a store unless it was on his official shopping hunting list!

I got so excited about this shot of what looks like two balls of self-striping sock yarn tagged just $1.99!!…

that he went back between business meetings the next day and bought all four balls they had! To his credit, he did notice that the label said worsted weight and 100% acrylic, maybe not right for socks?, but he knew I’d love the colors so he bought it anyway. He was right, acrylic yarn would not my first choice for socks, but I knew I could accent at least two of my ripples with my pretty souvenir yarn.

While he was there he was also able to bag a young book that had eluded him on his earlier visit, The Unfinished Canadian, by Andrew Cohen, which is about what seems to be a national preoccupation of how Canadians see themselves.

But back to his first trip to the store… there was some RHSS on that wall too. It’s hard to see, but I think it’s $2.99 a skein. That’s full retail here in the U.S.! Maybe it’s not readily available in Canada? I don’t know.

Free-range afghans seem to be as plentiful in Canadian thrifts as in ours!

Where, but in Canada, would you see this much hockey equipment displayed during the summer!?!

No shirts or yarn worth mentioning at VV #2.

On his way to VV #3 he had to deal with lots of construction and several detours.

His perseverance was justly rewarded; the determined hunter finally snared not just one but two souvenir shirts! The red one is in surprisingly good shape for being from the 2006 Olympics! and the green is like new, $2.99 each.

DH is home from his travels now and I’ve hugged my yarn, Merit Phentex in the colorway ‘Misty Blue’. Examining its labels more closely, I realize that it’s a Canadian souvenir twice over, because it not only came to me from Canada, but was also made there, by Spinrite, Inc. of Ontario. It comes in the cutest little 1.4 ounce skeins!! – That’s a seven-inch ruler BTW. – Their labels say “L’art de faire pour moins cher”. Ooo-La-La! lol. Translated, that’s, “Make the best for less”. It’s true, the French language makes everything seem more special. lol.

I’m having second and third thoughts about using my special yarn in ripples. It’s actually a three-ply yarn, making it more of a sport-weight than a worsted. Plus, I really like its blues and greens. And it would be nice to make something with it for myself, since DH went to so much trouble to get it for me!

Now just to think of the perfect project for it. What could I make out of five-and-a-half ounces of sport acrylic that I would be sure to use/wear? Possibly fingerless mitts and a cowl? The colors would look good with my dark green wool jacket.

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6 Responses to Hunting in Canada

  1. Sharon says:

    Hello! I am a Canadian and yes, we do get all types of wool, yarn, you name it here. But, for some reason, the stores like that will often charge far too much for their wool. In our Wal-Mart, the Red Heart Supersaver yarn is 3.97 and it can be more in other stores. I find my best buys for yarn are at garage sales, if I should be so fortunate to come across some!!

    How nice of your hubby to take you (and us) on his trip through the photos!


    • Thank you so much for writing Sharon! I’ve come to expect yarn prices at Savers to be about half of regular retail and I commonly I see RHSS marked 99 cents at the local Salvation Army, but it does tend to be lower than the other Sals that I’ve been to.

      I just pulled out my JoAnns flyer to make sure… RHSS’s regular price there is $2.99 (sale, $2.30). Boy, $3.97 is a big difference!!

      I agree, garage sale yarn prices are the best! But when I figure in the cost of gas to get to the sales and the fact that I tend to bring home far too many great bargains, yarnie and other wise, I’ve decided I’m better off sticking to the thrifts on my regular route. sigh

      Getting pictures in emails from DH was fun, but also kind of frustrating to almost be able to make out the prices and yarn names! Ah, it’s just as well, if I could have seen better, I probably would have wanted more, which I don’t need and I’m sure that DH was already at his limit – going back and getting that one yarn for me. lol 🙂

  2. Brenda says:

    Love the photos an that your hubby calls it VV… that’s what we call it too! (I’m in Ottawa) RHSS is easy to find here but the markup on it is crazy. I’m glad he had a successful trip and I can’t wait to see what you do with the Phentex!

    • Hi Brenda!
      VV… I’ll let DH know that he was talking like a ‘native’! lol.
      Do you have a favorite among the six VV stores?
      Hunh, I thought the trade agreements were supposed to help bring the cost of imports down!
      And he’s very happy with how the business side of his trip went as well. 🙂
      I’m disappointed that the Phentex isn’t a self-striping wool as I’d thought, but a variegated acrylic instead.
      Still, its colors are great! Given enough time – yarn needs to age like fine wine, right? Haha – I’m sure to come with something.

      • Brenda says:

        Lol, a fine wine… it’s true though, one day you will be hit with an epiphany and create something stunning!

        I don’t do the VV stores much any more but when I did I always liked the one on Cyrville Road, in the East end. I recognize the one on Bank Street in the photos but I’m not quite sure what the other two are that he hit up. Merivale Road maybe?

      • I’m not sure that I can guarantee that it will be ‘stunning’, lol, but I’ll make something! Trying to break the habit of saving so much yarn in hopes of a ‘special’ project. 🙂

        DH’s favorite was Cyrville too – the one with all the yarn! Bank’s where he got nothing and Clyde Ave. had the shirts.

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