Knitting in Daegu (and Crocheting, too!)

26 Nov

Now that winter is here again, it’s time to break out your yarn and needles (although, some of us never really put ours away!).  Living abroad is no excuse not to knit everyone you know a nice present.  Here’s a knitter’s (and crocheter’s!) guide to Daegu.

Knitting and crocheting at Seomun Market, where every day is a Stitch-n-Bitch!

Seomun Market

Seomun Market is a crafter’s paradise.  There are a lot of stores that sell yarn, needles, hooks, and other notions.  They’re a bit tricky to find the first time, but once you do, you’re in for a treat.  Starting at the main entrance of the market (under the huge “Seomun Market” sign), walk north with the market on your left and Dongsan Hospital on your right.  Go under the stairs, past Cafe Arista and a cellphone shop, and when you see the pharmacy on the left, turn left into the market.  There are yarn stores along that corridor.  If you’re lost, ask one of the vendors for help.  The Korean word for yarn is “실” (shil), and the word for knit is “뜨개질” (ddeu-gae-jil).  Say either of those words— or better yet, in combination— and you’re bound to find your way.  You’ll often find people knitting and crocheting in these shops.  If you see a sample pattern you like, you can buy the yarn and a knitting teacher will show you how to make it.  No need to speak great Korean for this- if you know how to knit, you’ll catch on.

Hobby Plus

There’s another great knitting and crocheting store near Banwoldang.  At Hobby Plus you can find a variety of notions that are more difficult to find in Seomun Market, like locking stitch markers and blocking pins.  Go out Banwoldang exit 2 and walk straight.  The store will be on your left after about a block.

There are other yarn stores tucked throughout Daegu.  Look for one in your neighborhood!

A word about yarn and needles

Yarn is a bit more expensive here than it is back home.  A lot of yarn here is imported from Japan and costs more than a pretty penny.  There are often similar yet cheaper Korean or even Italian varieties for sale, and be sure to shop around from store to store before making a big purchase.  Many shops carry the same brands yet have large price differences.  Yarn labels can sometimes be tricky.  Expect to see the weight in grams, and if you’re lucky, the yardage.  Fiber contents and ply are usually listed, though words like “worsted/aran,” “DK,” and “sport” are not used.  When in doubt, do a wpi (wraps per inch) test.  You can read more about yarn size here.  As for needles, here‘s a great conversion chart.  Needles are typically labeled in millimeters, and crochet hooks often use the Japanese system.

Don’t know how to knit?

Don’t worry!  Check out Daegu Knitter’s Group on facebook for Stitch-n-Bitch sessions, classes, and other info from knitting expats.  It’s a great way to meet people and learn something new!

Do you know about a yarn store in your area?  Tell us about it in the comments below!

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