Friday, June 29, 2007
Annie Modesitt, author and designer extraordinaire needs our help. Her husband Gerry has been diagnosed with Multiple Myleoma. This is a very aggressive form of cancer. Annie and her family moved only a few months ago to Minnesota, so they are going through this incredibly difficult and scary time without any family nearby. Annie and Gerry have two adorable young kids who we've all seen modeling some of her designs.
She is selling one of her patterns and all of the monies raised will be used to help offset the costs of travel and such for Gerry's treatments. She is asking a minimum of $4.50, but is hoping we can all step up and help out.
I have had the pleasure of meeting and spending time with Annie. She is larger than life, incredibly funny and full of life. She is the primary income for her family, but right now, knitting, teaching and travelling are just not possible.
Please go to her website and read her post and if at all possible, please consider making a donation.
And be sure to hug your family extra tight tonight.
Wednesday, June 27, 2007
Did any of you catch Larry King last night? He was in Vegas celebrating the one year anniversary of Cirque do Soleil's "Love" - their Beatles production. I had to giggle at the coincidence, given my post title of yesterday.
P.S. WEBS Staff - you cannot give away the answer and take away all of the fun.
Tuesday, June 26, 2007
We've added some great new models to the store that I thought I would share with you. First up is this gorgeous cardigan knit with Sheep Two from Sheep Shop Yarn Company. The picture doesn't do it justice - those dark colors are always a challenge to photograph! It really is darling and the pattern is a freebie on knitty.com!
While on the subject of knitty.com, our entire staff is in total love with Amy Singer's book No Sheep for You. It's been out for a couple of months now and we finally got a shop model knit up using a combination of Debbie Bliss Pure Silk DK and Artyarns Regal Silk.
Then late last week, Jaz brought in this lovely lingerie set she has been working on for us. It's knit using Ella Rae Silkience and is one of the new White Lies patterns we are carrying in the store (sorry - they are not available on the web per request from the designer). You can buy them directly at http://www.whiteliesdesigns.com/ and I hope you come back to us for the yarn! The pattern is #505 Alene Camisole and Boy Short:
I had also promised pictures of the new Shibui yarns that arrived. We never take in shipments that aren't nearly complete in terms of colors, but in this instance, we threw caution to the wind. That is how in love we are with this yarn.
We have 3 colors in the Baby Alpaca DK. It retails for $19.50/hank, has 255 yards and knits at 5 1/2 sts on a #6 needle.
Six colors of the Merino Kid came. It's 55% kid mohair/45% merino with 217 yards and knits at 5 sts on a #7 needle. It too retails for $19.50, but remember both of these yarns have terrific yardage.
Next is Silk Cloud with 60% kid mohair/40% silk. It is light and fluffy and yummy. And I don't particularly care for alpaca so if I'm singing it's praises, you have to trust it's nice stuff. It's got 330 yards and retails for $17.00. One skein will make a lovely swirl scarf. We have this knit up in the store for anyone who comes by.
Last, but just as great is Shibui Sock. Oh yes, wonderful, wonderful sock yarn. The colors, as with their other yarns are rich and vibrant and saturated and really well thought out. Each hank has 191 yards to 50 grams. It's superwash merino, of course and retails for $9.30/hank. Five colors arrived - a smattering of their more tonal solids and lively multis. What I love is besides just sock patterns, they have a too cute kids' sweater that we will have a shop model of shortly.
I have to say, this company has been nothing short of AWESOME to work with. Since the minute we met them at TNNA right on through, they have been just incredibly supportive. I really encourage all of you to check out their yarns.
We have also received in new colors in Blythe from Classic Elite. Blithe is a scrumptious 100% Baby Camel yarn. It is soft and squishy and not the least bit scratchy. It has 128 yards and retails for $15.00. This yarn has been around for a few seasons now, mostly in a tonal/natural palette of beiges and greys. Classic Elite has added these four rich hues for fall and we are in love, love, love. Dena is working on shawl that I cannot wait to see!
Then there's Swoon from Fiesta Yarns. And yes, the minute you touch this yarn and see the amazing colors that is exactly what you will do. This yarn has been on FIRE since it arrived and we're working hard to keep inventory on hand. It's 55% extrafine merino/45% silk. It retails at $35.00 for 225 yards and knits at 4 1/2 sts on a #8. This is only a sampling of the colors we brought in. We have another newbie coming from Fiesta in the coming weeks. Stay tuned!
Lastly, we are thrilled to introduce two yarns from Green Mountain Spinnery. They are located just about an hour from us and we've never stocked their yarns before. Why? Who knows, just one of those misses we sometimes make. Too much yarn, too little time. But no need to dwell on the past, we're happy to have them in the store and on the web. We're starting out with their Mountain Mohair, which is 70% wool/30% yearling mohair. The yarn is beautiful and their colors are amazing. It retails for $12.40/hank, has 140 yards and I would call it a heavy worsted weight.
We also have Sylvan Spirit, their wool/tencel blend that has a lovel, tweedy-ish sort of look that results from how the wool and tencel each take the dye. There are 180 yards, dk weight and retails at $11.25/hank.
Whew. . ..and this only catches us up through last week!
Plus, we've got an incredible line up of events and guest teachers over the coming months. This will all be on the website shortly, but I wanted to start getting the word out:
Sunday, July 15th at 1:00pm, Alison Hansel, author of Charmed Knits and The Blue Blog
This will be a presentation of fall trends, a trunk show and book signing.
Saturday & Sunday, September 8th & 9th, Norah Bellows, Designer/Owner of Noni Patterns.
This two day workshop (with a one day option) is sure to be a sellout!
Wednesday, September 12th at 5:00pm Norah Gaughan, author and Berroco Design Director
Norah will present the fall collection, including her exclusive pattern book and will be giving a demonstration of her hexagon technique.
Mid-September-ish TBD Vickie Howell, author, designer and host of DIY"s Knitty Gritty
This is sure to be a magical night of knitting, yarn and Knitty Gritty craziness! We'll have a yarn tasting of her signature line of yarns from SWTC and much more!
Saturday, October 6th, Teva Durham, author & designer.
Teva will teach two workshops and will be introducing her new line of yarns distributed by Tahki Stacy Charles.
Sunday, October 14th from 12:00-4:00, our 4th Annual Knit for the Cure
Saturday, October 20th, WEBS Bus Trip to NY Sheep & Wool Festival, Rhinebeck, NY
Join us for this magical and fun trip to Rhinebeck. There'll be food and goodies all the way to Rhinebeck. The trip home will be prizes for who bought the most, the least, etc.
Oh and this list doesn't even include Maggie Radcliffe, Candace Eisner-Strick, Margaret Fisher, Susanna Hansson, Amy Barrie (rug hooker extraordinaire), Margaret Heathman.. . . . . .who are ALL COMING TO WEBS THIS FALL! As the kids would say "Come on Robin, to the Bat Cave, there's not a moment to lose!" I think that is very appropos to all of you knitters and WEBS!
Plus, we'll have trunk shows from Shibui, Classic Elite, Sheep Shop Yarn and Filatura di Crosa Baby.
AND! We'll be at Stitches Midwest (Chicago) in August, the Boston Knit Out on September 30th and Stitches East (Baltimore) in October.
AND - there may be a couple of surprise additions, so be sure to watch the website, listen to the podcast, read the blog, stop by the store. . . . .
I think I need a nap after this post.
P.S. I didn't even share the MOST exciting item of the day. Today, the temperataure hit 98 degrees here. Right now, it's still 89 with 90 minutes to go until sunset. Melissa has decided that I must be a lizard. When she retires to Arizona or Florida, I will go with her and live on a rock, near a pond in her yard (translate deck and pool and cushy pool house). I will be very happy.
P.P.S. I know Melissa means this with the utmost affection. She is not insinuating I LOOK like a lizard, just have lizard like qualities in terms of my love of the heat. Gosh, it sounded so much more endearing coming from her. . . . . . . .
Monday, June 18, 2007
The first picture is of the press that our catalog runs on and the next two are actual pages - right off of the press that we are using to compare to the computer generated proofs for color accuracy, etc. Being on press is like the culmination of any large project - all the hardwork and sweat finally pays off when the first pages start coming off the conveyer. I can't wait for this catalog to hit mailboxes. We have some new yarns, new colors and amazing new designs (if I do say so myself). I hope you will all be as excited to get knitting!
I discovered that I had a picture from The Yarn Harlot's visit that I never shared. One of our lovely customers came and was mentioning a log cabin project she was working on - having read here about my "desire" to log cabin (did I just make it into a verb?). Here is what she has knit:
She's using SWTC's Karaoke - isn't it incredible?! What's most amazing is she is donating the blanket to a charity auction! If I had worked as hard as she had on such a project, I'm not sure I'd be able to part with it. This really is a work of art, the picture does not do it justice.
Our Office Manager Malea was also sporting a lovely new top this past week:
Knit by Melissa in trade for . . . . more pottery I believe (Malea is an amazing potter and is simply hanging with us until she hits the big time). This was knit in Art Yarns Regal Silk, pattern P90. The shaping is beautiful and looks just gorgeous on.
So after finishing at the printer today, Cirilia and I hightailed it back to WEBS. And boy did I find some great new goodies! Have I mentioned that Cirilia is back at WEBS for the summer? She is working with me on catalogs and general marketing initiatives. So thrilled to have her, if only she wasn't determined to go back and finish her Masters Degree this fall. . . . really Cirilia, education is WAY overrated :)
First off, Berroco Fall has arrived! I only had a couple of minutes to snap photos, so I apologize. But here are some of colors in their Ultra Alpaca Light:
Really, these colors are to.die.for. I am not a fan of small needle knitting, but trust me, I will be knitting with this yarn.
Also, new colors of Foliage:
I've always liked Foliage, but I LOVE these new tonal variations.
We also received our advance balls of Comfort:
There are 57 total colors and we picked out 30 for the store. This yarn will be available in about a week, with a dedicated pattern book coming in August. We talked about this yarn on the podcast this past week and it has to be touched and swatched to be believed. It's a nylon/acrylic blend - I know, I know. It does not sound appetizing at all. But do not judge a yarn by it's label folks! This is sure to be a new core basic - machine wash and dry.
These yarns should be up on the website tomorrow. I will add links then.
We also received in a bunch of new books. This great new felting book from Amy Swenson looks faboo:And we've finally received copies of Charmed Knits by Alison Hansel:
We will be hosting an event with Alison on Sunday, July 15th from 1:00pm - 4:00pm. Potter mania will be nearing a crescendo at this point and we are thrilled that Alison has made time for us in her busy schedule. Not only does she have this new book, she has a new baby too! Watch the blog and the website for more details about the event.
We also received in two other new yarns that I did not have time to photograph. Dena, our Inventory Analyst had it totally under wraps and only allowed me a quick peek until she's got it all in the sytem. So check back tomorrow for pictures of my favorite find from TNNA - Shibui Knits. Two of the four yarns we purchased are in, as are patterns. Just wait until you see them.
My "More Thank An Apron" is coming along. I"m about to start on the center panel, but need to be sure I've got the right sizing before I go any further.
Thursday, June 14, 2007
Monday, June 11, 2007
I realize that the knitting/crocheting content has been a bit light as of late. General yarn talk has been missing as well. Just want to make a quick post today about my WIPs and then this week I plan to catch you up on new yarns, projects, etc., that are happening at the store.
My top down sweater from the knitalong is still going. I'm working 'round and 'round the body. I'm probably about 1/2 way there. I've figured out a trim for the sleeves and bottom edge which will take no time at all. As long as it's done before it gets cold, I'm not stressing about this project. It's perfect, mindless knitting which is great for all of the sidelines I've been sitting on lately.
My newest project is this sweet apron. I fell in love with it the second I saw it on crochetme.com. I swatched feverishly when I had no right to be swatching anything! I'm using our Valley Yarns Southwick, a lovely pima/bamboo blend which is the absolute perfect gauge. It's also the perfect fiber blend and is a dream to work with. I'm crocheting this in all black, which isn't nearly as tough as I thought it would be. The reality is I wear a lot of black. Anyone out there remember the kids' line called Garanimals? Just match the tags and your outfit matches? Well, I'm a zebra - lots of black and white. Makes getting dressed easy and I can easily spice up outfits with a fun wrap or scarf. I cannot wait to finish this project. I'm 12 rows in and about to start the first set of darts. The piece is not difficult, it's smartly designed and I just love it! I want to be done with it so I can wear it to the TKGA Show next month in Manchester, NH. We will be there exhibiting/selling, so be sure to stop by!
Since we're talking crochet, I want to show you one of my prized possessions from TNNA. As I said in my last post, we came home with plenty of schwag - lots of treasures among all the schwag, but this ranks right up there:
It's my Crochet Revolution wrist band that i got at the Interweave Press booth. It ties in with Kim Werker's new book and her mission with Interweave Crochet. Plus, I discovered it has a fabulous duel purpose:
The perfect Blackberry cozy. Love it! I bet I could knit/crochet a bunch of these out of Fixation!
Once this is done, then it's onto Log Cabin. I have the yarn, the colors, the design, everything ready to go. But I promised myself a crochet project after completing the catalog projects. I've also got to come up with the next knitalong project. Before Pixie left for France, she emailed me that she would like to do a Nordic Shawl design (her own for a class she teaches at the store). Not sure that's speaking to me. Any ideas? Suggestions?
Honestly, I have way more WIPs floating around here. It's way too embarrassing to share. Seriously. Plus I have Melissa chomping at the bit to get me going on socks. There it is, admitted to the world, I have never knit socks. My MIL says that you are not a real knitter until you've turned a heel. Well, I'm sure we could have quite a lively debate about that, but given that she is the founder, she wins. I think I prefer the word "accomplished" to "real" myself.
Oh, by the way - look who got published on Knitty! Guess I couldn't ask for a better teacher! Congratulations Melissa!
The boys have that glazed over look about them - I think it's time to make some dinner.
Sunday, June 10, 2007
Tuesday, June 5, 2007
Everyone was cheering, flashbulbs were flashing throughout the audience. It was magical.
So many of our regular customers were there, so many new and first time visitors. We saw Jessica from Ravelry (you must check it out), Amy from Knittinghelp.com (go there too) and Peta Bailey and her Yarn Safaris Group. I honestly couldn't keep it all straight.
We collected over 100 hats:
Please knit 7"x7" - no worries. We are nothing, if we aren't consistent.
And lots of food:
This is only a fraction of what we collected. You all are amazing.