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Crazy for Ewe

Burton Bear Hood

Burton Bear Hood

Well, if this isn't the cutest thing, I don't know what is!  it knits up in a flash with just two skeins of super bulky yarn (Noble would be perfect) on size 13 needles.  Wouldn't you just love to see your little sweetheart staying warm and cozy in this!  You can knit one for all the tots, and one for yourself too!  Mama and baby bear - too cute!

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The Decemberist - December First Friday Project

The Decemberist - December First Friday Project

A lovely bit of instant gratification from one of our favorite shawl designers, Melanie Berg, the Decemberist Shawl  is just what you need on your needles right now.  Make it as a last minute gift for some incredibly lucky (and knitworthy) individual on your holiday list, or as a cozy indulgence for yourself.  You've been read more

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Five reasons to love linen

Five reasons to love linen
Reed is the smooth, suave linen fiber that's totally changed my mind about knitting with linen.  When Shibui introduced this yarn, I kept touching it and thinking; Wow, this is linen?  Really?  It's so smooth - so soft -- so silky.  How can this be?  The answer is in the construction.  Rather than being a traditional plied yarn, Reed is a fine chainette that creates suppleness and loft in a fiber that lacks both.  This fingering weight yarn that takes advantage of linen's crispness but tempers it into a lovely smooth fiber that has totally seduced me.  Reed, you are my kind of fiber... Continue reading

4 tips for fab summer knitting

4 tips for fab summer knitting

Wow - Memorial Day already - the official beginning of summer fun! This is the season when knitters who travel folks travel and knitters often relax into an altogether different mode. Here are 4 ways to make summer knitting fabulous

  • Knit socks - You always need a little knitting handy while you're watching the sunset or enjoying a casual evening with friends. Small, mindless projects like simple socks in fun variegated colors fit the bill. Knit them in simple stockinette and let the colors do all the work. If you're not yet a sock knitter, Jenny has a beginning sock class starting June 1st so you can easily get on board and be starting your second pair of socks before the 4th of July!
  • Knit light weight yarns -  If you're traveling, pick up some laceweight, like beautiful Shibui Lunar and you'll have a beautiful lace project that weighs next to nothing and takes up no space but still keeps you engaged. If you love the idea of lace shawls, but find them a little intimidating, fear not - Boo Knits has introduced a line of Boo's for Beginners, and Ginni is doing a series of classes on them, starting with Rum and Cola. If you'd rather start now with a super simple project in Lunar, try Envoy, Shibui's simple triangular one-skein wrap. 
  • Knit classically constructed summer sweaters - While there is an appeal to sweaters worked all in one piece, they quickly reach a point where they're heavy and not so transportable. Individual sweaters pieces are typically smaller even than socks and scarves, so you can carry a sleeve or even a full sweater back with you and not have a pile of knitting in your lap. Join our next Custom Fit in 6 weeks class starting July 15
  • Knit shawls in fine yarns A Curl is a perfect summer because it starts small and grows into a terrific accessory you can pull on when the air-conditioning is freezing you to death and toss off when it's not. Try the beautiful Ianthine Curl Mary is doing in the Curl Class coming up June 7

I look forward to seeing you now and throughout the summer - you are always welcome here.

~Ellen Continue reading

Luma love

Luma love

Stone Point poncho by The Fibre Co. at Crazy for Ewe

It's First Friday tomorrow.  We're starting a beautiful new project called Stone Point, and it's clearly a home run for The Fibre Company.  The design is comfortable and flattering, the stitch pattern is interesting but not hard, and the yarn is lovely and not too expensive.  It's a one-size poncho that's easy to customize if you want it longer or shorter, narrower or wider, or without the collar shown.  That's a great project, in my book.  If that were the only pattern for their new yarn, Luma, it would probably be enough, but they've got at least three other designs that are just as nice (almost),  Here are my favorites.

First is Yale Harbor.  Cozy as your favorite sweatshirt, but way more chic, Yale Harbor is exactly what you want to slip into for an early summer walk on the beach.  It's the kind of sweater I want to have handy to throw on while I sip a glass of wine and watch the sun go down.  Worked in a simple slipped stitch pattern, Yale Harbor is a fun knit and wonderful go-to garment. 

Next is Bennett Creek.  A cropped sweater with a very current high-low hemline, Bennett Creek is a beautiful modern twist on the classic cabled sweater.  Before you say, I don't wear cropped sweaters, picture it over a long tee or a crisp blouse.  It's a very fresh look that's easier to wear than you think.  The front features a wide cable that gives you a flattering vertical line.

Rue Cambon Cardigan Kelbourne Woolens

Luma also looks great for dress up, as in Rue Cambon.   From their French-inspired collection, April in Paris, this cardigan is perfect for those of you who love working sweaters top-down, in-the-round (talking to you, Jenny, Holly, and the rest).  Reverse stockinette stitch shows off Luma's subtle texture and highlights the styling details at the shoulders and cuffs.  This would be very comfortable to wear and would make a great wardrobe addition.

 So, come down tonight and enjoy First Friday and get started with us on Stone Point, or choose another beautiful design for lovely Luma.  See you tonight!

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Cravings

Cravings

Part of the reason I love living in this area is because I like the seasonality. I need it in a way. The seasons give my life an organic kind of structure that just feels right.  There's a sense of order to what I cook, and what I eat and what I knit.  This time of year, when it's cold and dreary, I crave comfort food -- and comfort knitting.  I want warm and snuggly.  I want Umaro.

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Umaro class and knitalong

Umaro class and knitalong

Did you ever see the play Annie..or maybe the movie?  It has that catchy little tune, "Umaro, Umaro, I love you Umaro, you're always a day away..."  Oh wait, it's tomorrow...oh well, doesn't matter, Umaro is actually what I love.  Cozy and quick, Umaro is a beautiful throw designed by Jared Flood.  Shirley Walker knit one, which she graciously loaned me - it's in the shop window - you should come see. We have the sample of it knit by Shirley Walker in our window you should come see.  It's even prettier in person that the official picture from the pattern here.

Umaro throw by Jared Flood

Worked in super bulky yarn on size 15 needles, it's fun and fast to knit.   I've had it in my queue to knit for over a year, and I'm starting it Saturday, February 4th.  If you want to knit along with me, here are the skills you'll need for this project:

  • Knit and purl
  • Relaxed long-tail cast on
  • Right-leaning and left-leaning decreases
  • Yarnovers
  • Cables
  • Chart reading

In case you're not quite up to speed on any of those skills, join us Wednesday, February 1st for a class on the Umaro stitch pattern.  We'll work one repeat of the pattern so you'll get those skills and be perfectly comfortable with all aspects of the pattern.  Bonus is that this can be your swatch too, so you can come to the knitalong Saturday, all ready to go!  Class includes one skein of Ushya and the pattern.  Bring or buy at class, US Size 15 needles. Choose afternoon 2:30-4:00 or evening 5:30-7:30.  Click here for more info or to sign up.

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Stanza Cowl this Sunday

Stanza Cowl this Sunday

Stanza Cowl Shibui Drift

And by this Sunday, I mean tomorrow. We're doing the Stanza Cowl in new Shibui Drift.  This is a simple pattern with the sole purpose of showing of a spectacular fiber.  Drift is a spectacular fiber.  A luxurious heavy worsted weight blend of merino and cashmere, Drift has a velvety hand and a cozy plumpness that's heaven to knit.  Everything about this fiber is ultra luxe.  It's like heavy cream - rich and decadent.  

The colors are clear and saturated - I love this red. The picture doesn't really do it justice, but it's a bright true red - like a good lipstick --perfect for a winter.

Shibui Drift The other colors are pretty great too, and of course the cream, my favorite, is always elegant. 

Drift is the perfect fiber to put right next to your skin, so you'll love knitting it, and you'll just love having it around your neck - so cozy and beautiful.  It's a super quick knit too, so if there's anyone deserving on your holiday gift list, knitting Stanza in Drift would be a treat for yourself and them!  

Join us tomorrow at 1 p.m. to get started.  

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The Next Noro Knit Blanket

The Next Noro Knit Blanket

Noro Mitered Crosses afghan promo

This time last year I was finishing up my Cavendish throw in Noro Silk Garden.  Then I started in right away on my 64 Crayons Blanket.  I had never been much of a blanket knitter, but somehow with Noro it was different.  Everything is, I suppose.  I love having those throws tossed on the couch as if begging me to come snuggle.  Now that it's getting cold, I am getting the urge again to knit a Noro blanket. 

My friend Dollyce on Ravelry did one that I've loved for a long time.  From Kay Gardiner's book Mason Dixon Knitting, it's worked using mitered squares in various colors of Noro with borders of creamy Silk Garden Solo in between.  It's so beautiful.  Here's a shot of her afthan - it's been favorited some 2300 times.

No wonder, huh?  It's spectacular to behold, but it's also terrific to knit.  

Here are my top 7 reasons for loving this pattern:

  1. You get to use whatever colors of Noro you like
  2. It's modular, so you can take it with you and work it whenever you have five minutes
  3. It's a simple pattern that you can easily memorize so it's very relaxing
  4. Each square has its own completion reward - you get that little thrill each time you do a square
  5. You work a double decrease every other row, so the knitting accelerates as you go
  6. You pick up and knit each color, rather than seaming each little square.
  7. It's totally spectacular, and you will be so proud to say, yeah, I made that!

I'm going to get started on it this Saturday, November 5th.  Come join me! We'll start at 2, but come a little early so you can pick out the colors you like.  If choosing colors is hard for you, no worries -- I'll help -- that's my favorite part!  Can't wait to get my colors going --I'm super jazzed!  See you then!

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