Thursday, June 28, 2007

Mystery Shawl

For those of you who have not heard about this, there is still time to join. Designer "Melanie" of Pink Lemon Twist Patterns has designed a shawl - her third mystery shawl. Each week (starting tomorrow, Friday June 29th) she will provide instructions for part of the shawl. Each week you will receive more directions until, (voila!) your shawl is completed. It is sort of like making a jig saw puzzle without seeing the picture. For more information, I have included Melanie's website where you can get more info and join the group. There is no fee.

And, tomorrow night from 7-11pm Creative Fibers is hosting a Cast On Party so we can all get the first piece of the shawl going successfully. Bring you yarn and needles, your beverage of choice and a snack to share. It should be great fun to unite Mystery Shawl knitters in our area; I look forward to seeing you. Again, no fee.

Wednesday, June 6, 2007

Limited Edition Tofutsies

We just received one bag of the Limited Edition Tofutsies yarn from Southwest Trade. We have 10 skeins of June although I would call it raspberry. It comes with a free sock pattern and we are offering it to you. When it is gone, it is gone for good (well, for at least one year according to SouthWest Trade). You also have access to a yahoo group dedicated to this sock yarn.

PS: the color featured in the photo appears more purple than what is in my office.

TNNA Trade Show Extravaganza

Last week, Terry (devoted husband and knitter), Julie (employee and designer) and I visited Columbus, Ohio for the fall preview of knitting products and toys.

My mind is a muddle. I attended 6 classes (more later) and there were 2400 exhibitors. OK, we didn't visit them all but there was lots to see.

But first, TRENDS. In the Friday night fashion show (and repeated on the exhibition floor) we saw was the pendulum swinging back to traditional beautiful knitting. Cables, pattern stitches, lots of socks, and coats (great for New England and if you don't want a coat, stop earlier for a brilliant sweater.) Gone are the extravagant novelty yarn garments. Also, luxury fiber blends abound. Yarns featuring alpaca or llama paired with merinos or silk were everywhere.

Classes - well I started out with a 6 hour class with Cat Bordhi on sock architecture. Truly, this woman is brilliant and an excellent teacher. In a nutshell, until now, there have been two sock architectures: eastern (a tube knit from the toe up; later slit at the heel so stitches can be picked up and a heel created. Handy if the heel wears out. Just unravel and knit a new heel). Then there is the western method with heel flaps and gussets. Now we have Cat's 3rd architecture which can be top down or toe up. It all has to do with placing increases/decreases to create the right shape. In class we knit baby socks; one in each direction. And the best part for you 2 circular needle knitters or Magic Loop folks....the Addi circular lace needles are the best! So, what could make me happier? The UPS man just delivered our recent lace needle order; 24in size 1 and 2. (we also have other sizes but this was the first delivery of the 24inchers).

I spent 3 class intervals with Sally Melville. Like Cat, Sally is a brilliant designer with strength in design, construction and knitting technique. With Sally I learned multi colored knitting with multiple hands. We knit with 2 yarns held in the right hand, or the left, one color in each hand, 2 colors around the neck, one around the neck and one in the right hand (or the left). Which means we learned the Portuguese Purl. I'm not certain but that may also be the Peruvian Purl.

A class with Lily Chin is always fast, fun and fanciful! We did lots of little tips and techniques.

Lastly, a class on the modified continental knitting method and I think I have exhausted knitting technique for some time. They all have their purpose, and especially if you have arthritis, you may want to consider a different knitting/purling method. I'd be happy to teach you.

Terry and Julie also took classes that I won't go into right now. Maybe they should have a blog?

Well, the list of yarn, needles, notions and books to be published is daunting. I think our best find of the whole show though is a portable washing machine (that requires no plumbing) so we can felt items right in the shop. We ordered one and are so excited to give this a try. Keep an eye out for this new addition. Maybe it needs a name....any ideas?

Oh, and one last highlight. Seeing Debbie Bliss and Louisa Harding was a treat. Debbie visited our shop last yearin June; we were honored to host her. Louisa Harding is a dear and we love her Mother and Babies book featuring natural yarn selections.

Lots of new items ordered for the fall. We will keep you updated!
now, back to the mountain of paperwork generated by these orders.....

About Me

Windsor, CT
Twelve local shop owners who want to get to know you and have some fun.