I've gotten pretty good at ordering yarn online. My initial attempts resulted in some pretty peculiar purchases, like 40 large balls of coarse, magenta-colored thick-and-thin wool, 20 balls of really ugly orange and purple viscose, and a whole lot of some rather frightening bulky weight green acrylic that I deny ordering to this very day. And when I entered the world of hand-dyes, it took a couple of disasters before I realized that colors that look wonderful on the skein may look nauseatingly like a bad tv test pattern when wound into a ball. But I take full responsibility for these learning experiences. One must learn to read descriptions with care, estimate yardage needs accurately, be realistic about one's knitting habits, and curb the frenetic buying impulse sparked by the words "discontinued" and "sale." The occasional stubbed toe is inevitable.
But I do not take responsibility for what I have come to think of as "Pet Peeve #143": online yarn sellers who post pictures of yarn that bears no resemblance to the actual yarn that will be arriving in your mailbox.
Case in point:
I ordered some lovely silk for a summer top based on this photo:
It looks like red, purple, and green, with some pretty gold, right?
This is what arrived today:
The picture does not do justice to the true neon brilliance of the warning-sign yellow. The red, purple, and green? It's there. See that little stripe on the left side? That's it. Now, I have nothing against yellow. It makes for lovely flowers and attention-grabbing "Yield" signs. It does not, however, work well with my bright red hair and freckled skin. I would never knowingly have ordered this particular shade of yellow for a garment for myself--or, to be honest, for anyone.
And now I'm faced with a Hobson's choice: I can either box it all up, get a return authorization, find the right address, make a label, take it to the post office, wait in line, pay for postage, insurance, and a return receipt, and wait a month (or two or three) for the charge (minus shipping both ways, of course) to be reversed to my credit card--or I can suck it up and put the yarn in the stash for that day when I am finally ready to knit really expensive summer tops for a whole swarm of honeybees.