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Linen is for Summer Crafting

Linen is for Summer Crafting

In the summer, it’s too hot to be working with a big wool project. One thing I like to work on is guest towels, because they make great gifts (and to be completely honest, I love them myself!).  You don’t need a pattern, just a basic concept. Sport weight linen knits to about 6 stitches per inch.  Here are the steps I use to create one of a kind fancy guest towels.   Remember, this is a towel, 1 stitch or row doesn’t really matter!

1) Choose a size. A large hand towel is about 11-12 inches wide by 22-24 inches long. This is the size most often found in a 3-piece terry towel set including bath+hand+washcloth. It will take about 100g of sport weight linen. A smaller guest towel is about half as big, about 6-7 X 15-18 inches and takes about 50g. These measurements have a lot of leeway, so you can fit the size to the stitch pattern you want to use.

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Malou BiColor Cowl

Malou BiColor Cowl

Dropstitch Cowl 1 This is the drop stitch cowl I passed along to you last year, but reworked for 2 balls of Malou Bicolor. I knit this in one evening while watching a football game! Size 13 circular needle, 24″. Cast on 67 st, join circle by slipping last st to left hand needle and start 1st round by K2tog (66 st). You can put a full twist into the cast on row (shown), or leave the twist out as you prefer. Rounds 1 & 3: K Rounds 2, 4: P Round 5: Knit, double wrapping each stitch. Tip: be sure not to pull your second wrap tight! Round 6: Purl, dropping the extra wrap on each stitch. Repeat these 6 rounds 5 times, then repeat rounds 1-4 once and bind off loosely. Weave in ends, then snuggle up!


Regia Zima 8ply Accessories

Regia Zima 8ply Accessories

We have just gotten a special purchase 8-ply yarn from Regia, and this pattern,

RegiaZimaColor Hat&wristwarmers 2 is free.  Take a look at this:

Regia Zima Color
Regia Zima Color

Zima Color 8-ply is a quick-to-knit DK weight, but with all the desirable qualities of Regia sock yarn, including being machine washable!  Just one ball (200g) is enough to make this set.

What a beautiful look, and it all comes automatically with the Zima self patterning yarn that changes colors while adding geometric pattern details.  It’s reminiscent of the S&S Mexiko yarns that were so popular.

This is a limited edition yarn, so get yours today.

Summer is for Super 10

Summer is for Super 10

Our favorite! If you think cotton is just for dishcloths, you haven’t met Super 10, the superior choice for DK weight cotton for both crochet and knit

Chloe in Super 10
Westminster Fibers have come up with 2 new booklets, and each has very wearable patterns that will become staples in your wardrobe.
Amanda vest in Super 10
Hands Down FavoriteWe had a sample of this vest in #3995 Persian Red at Stitches West and literally could not meet the demand!  This is a real winner in a simple lace pattern,  you will love it no matter which one of the more than 80 colors you choose.Super 10 has so many great qualities:  it’s machine wash and dry, won’t split, won’t pill, won’t shrink, it’s  soft, colorfast, and has a permanent shine.

Of course it’s fabulous for adult garments, including shawls and sweaters, but you can use Super 10 for household items  (placemats, pillows, handtowels), baby items (blankets, hats)  and of course kids love it!

Yet-to-be-appreciated Yarns, Part 2

Yet-to-be-appreciated Yarns, Part 2

Some great but yet-to-be-appreciated yarns
This season there have been a lot of changes in the yarns available for knitters. There have been a lot of yarns discontinued, and a lot of new introductions.  In times of economic uncertainty, it’s no surprise that crocheters and knitters return to their favorites.  But there are some that I have tried, and deserve a closer look.

Aiko Garments

Lang Aiko

Mohair is coming back into style, but not the ultra big fuzz-ball look.  What is important now is a light halo and a soft hand.  Enter Aiko.  This yarn is incredibly soft, but it takes up a lot of space.  The yarn itself it made up from a tiny boucle of the fibers stitched into a small tape.  When it is knit, there isn’t a lot of surface halo (fuzz), but it knits to a bigger gauge than it looks.  The Aiko styles in the Lang books are mostly used for snuggly knits, but I think it would also make a great yarn for openwork styles–a lacy scarf or wrap would be very sophisticated in this yarn.

Big Yarns

Big Yarns


VK Cover Garment
Vogue Knitting’s Cover Sweater featuring Cortina Nuvole

Astrakan by Lang
Lang Astrakan

& even

Link Long Scarf    Berroco’s Link

Yes, all the fashion magazines, the knitting and the crochet magazines, and the TV/internet style shows  are showing big, Big, BIGGER knits! And they’re so gorgeous, and they’re fast to knit, but… but…. but….

“Super-bulky knits look great on a 5′ 10″, 90 lb model, but not me! They’re so pricey with so little yardage! And they’re so heavy–who could wear all that?! Even if you’re skinny, it weighs a ton!”

The answer is Yes, you can wear these yarns, if you choose wisely.   Here are some tips:

  • Accessories–scarves, hats, muffs–give the fashion look without being overwhelming
  • Look at the cost of the garment, not the price of the skein.  Most of these yarns are cost-effective.
  • Remember to keep the fabric and the fit loose–unless it’s an outerwear coat or jacket, these yarns shouldn’t be firmly knit.  They also not meant to be knit into sweaters that are close-fitting; instead choose patterns for layering garments.
  • Natural fibers are heavier than synthetics.  In these super big yarns, a synthetic portion or blend is a big plus in keeping them light enough to wear.
  • “Cable knit” yarns, where the strand is really a knitted tube, are much lighter to wear, and warm too.

A Quick Link to all our Big Yarns!

Try A New Yarn: Cyber Monday–hope you’ll visit us!

Try A New Yarn: Cyber Monday–hope you’ll visit us!

Wow! Cyber Monday!  This is supposed to be the day when those of you are still shopping on Monday, but online, make everything great for us online retailers.  But we do have a very special deal for you to try something new or just treat yourself for getting all that holiday shopping done!

It’s the Fifth (and last) day of the Try a New Yarn promotion from  Today’s Buy One Get One Half off coupon is for the yummiest new yarns from Lang:  Aiko, a multi-purpose chunky yarn,   and a great extension of Alpaca SuperLight, Lang Alpaca SuperLight Lamé.

       Aiko:  Use the coupon code    AIKOLUX     Lux because this is truly a luxury yarn.   One look at this yarn and you will be wondering where it has been all your life!  This yarn is a combination of so many desirable qualities:  fast and easy to knit, a little bit of haze from some mohair, depth of color and texture.  You will love it–try it now!

Alpaca SuperLight Lamé:  Use the coupon code OOHLALA

    You can use this beautiful yarn for any lace weight pattern that has a large enough gauge to handle the halo, or substitute for any pattern for Alpaca SuperLight in any of the Fatto à Mano books.  A fabulous addition to the Lang yarn line-up.  For those of you who like to experiment, this yarn is a great carry-along for a plain yarn.  The colors coordinate with all the other Lang yarns, so pair it with Alpaca SuperLight for a chunky knit, or with Aiko for a bulky.  Make yourself a one of a kind masterpiece!

This coupon will allow you to buy 2 skeins of  these yarns, with the second skein at half price.  You may mix colors, and you may use the coupon as many times as you wish.

GOOD TODAY (11/28/2011) ONLY.

Try A New Yarn: Coupon Codes for a Fabulous Sunday

Try A New Yarn: Coupon Codes for a Fabulous Sunday

So it’s the Sunday after Thanksgiving – are you all exhausted from shopping?  No? Tired of football?  Good, because we have new discount codes for 2 more great new yarns today.  There’s still time to knit a holiday gift from the skeins you order.

Anyway, it’s the Fourth day of the Try a New Yarn promotion from  Today’s Buy One Get One Half off coupon is for the newest yarn from Lopi (Istex) Einband Lace weight, and Regia Design Line Hand-Dye Effect by Kaffe Fasset

                       Einband:  Use the coupon code LOPILACE

This is just a marvelous yarn –Lopi yarn in a next-t0-the-skin soft lace weight.  Try it!

Regia Design Line Hand-Dye Effect by Kaffe Fasset:  Use the coupon code KAFFE8     

The master of color has designed a line of beautiful degradé colors for socks or any 4-ply pattern .

This coupon will allow you to buy 2 skeins of  these yarns, with the second skein at half price.  You may mix colors, and you may use the coupon as many times as you wish.

GOOD TODAY (11/27/2011) ONLY.