Sunday, December 31, 2017

Goodbye 2017

I've been going through pictures on my computer and here are a few of my finished projects from 2017.
Ambah O'Brien's Bambara Wrap.

Ambah's Xanthe.

Stephen West's Building Blocks.

Free Your Fade

Find Your Fade #1

Find Your Fade #2

There are quite a few projects behind my knitting chair that are almost finished. I'm going to have a lot of new shawls in 2018. In three weeks I'm heading to Las Vegas for a trade show to see the new yarns and accessories for spring. Now I need to figure out which shawls I want to finish first so that I can take them.

This is a great one. My parents, Aunt Rene, Uncle Bob, Mark and Darlene with Nancy and Johnny Bower. This picture was from September 2009. Johnny was a guest at the charity dinner for Honduras.

Happy New Years Eve!!

Friday, December 29, 2017


We received a shipment of mitt kits from Fleece Artist. There are two different kits and both are extremely warm. Something we need this week.
Soft Mitts
The softest mitts you will every wear. 
You hold one strand of mohair with a strand of wool. The pattern is super easy and they look great.

I asked Fleece Artist to send me a variety of colourways and then did a great job.

Thrum Mitts
Our best selling kit for nearly 15 years.  Thrumming is an old technique that is just so much fun. By pulling small tufts of sliver, these are knit into a garment creating a fuzzy warm layer on the inside and irresistible polka dots on the outside.
 Head on over to the Yarn Harlot's blog - she did a great post on Thrum Mitts.

Another Find Your Fade kit. I promised something a little less bright.

Beth and I just got home from dinner with dad. We had a good evening and now it's time for Top Chef and a few rows of knitting.

Thursday, December 28, 2017


Many of you know that Find Your Fade is one of my favourite knits. It's a favourite of a lot of people. There are over 6000 projects on Ravelry. Think about how many people have knit it but haven't uploaded pictures.

This morning we made up kits for my colourway. A couple of the colours are slightly different but in a good way. I really like them. I wish they were in my shawl.

Then I made up a few more kits. I was only in the store for a short time packing mail orders. Now I'm home with Roko. We'll make up more kits tomorrow. Probably not quite so bright :)
Now that I'm looking at this colourway I might change the order. Number 1 is at the top and number 7 at the bottom. Another option is 1, 2, 3, 7, 6, 5, 4. I'll take a look at that tomorrow.

Dad, Beth and Lucy made it home safely. We've had a few tears but way more laughs thinking about funny mom stories. There are a lot of them.

Beth is telling me to hurry. We haven't opened our Christmas presents yet. They are sitting in front of the fireplace and calling her name.

Wednesday, December 27, 2017

Colour Explosion

Mr. UPS came for a visit this afternoon with the Rockshelter Sock. Oh my goodness. I might keep it all for myself!! The colours are amazing. There are some calmer colours but the ones I like the best are the bright ones. And a few of them are very bright. Great to knit with on a cold winter day.

He came very late and I had errands to run or I would have put together some Find Your Fade kits. I can't wait to get to work in the morning.

I need to give out some Ambah O'Brien Ravelry Coupon Codes. :) I was at home with Roko for a bit so I asked the ladies in the store to pick some numbers for me.

Congratulations to the 8 lucky winners. Your codes have been messaged to you on Ravelry. Please check your Inbox.

4 - Highlights
19 - yummygirl
42 - adriennehol
26 - Mojo53222
57 - jkaine
14 - susank
62 - Cbaird25
35 - Lynnwood

Thank you for all your kind words and messages. It means a lot to my family. Dad and Beth will be leaving Myrtle Beach very early in the morning - between 2 and 3am. The only way home is through Erie, PA. The snow is supposed to stop for a bit and then start again tomorrow afternoon. They want to get through while there is daylight. I think Lucy would love to stop for a bit and play in 6 feet of snow.

Tuesday, December 26, 2017


I mentioned yesterday that we've had a crazy few days. I try to keep my blog posts upbeat and positive. Today I'm sharing sadness with you.
My mom passed away Sunday morning. Mom and dad were in Myrtle Beach. We got Beth a plane ticket right away and she was in Myrtle Beach Sunday night.

I'm sharing with you because many of you know my mom. She worked in the store when we first opened. I blog a lot about my family so you've heard stories about her.

I'm also sharing so you understand why I will be in and out for the next few weeks. There could be tears and I might not be myself. Cathy, Lynn and Alex will be in the store and I will be there as much as I can.

We know that she is in heaven. We know that she is no longer in pain. But it's hard. It happened suddenly so we didn't get to say goodbye. I am very thankful that I called her Saturday night before I went to bed and said good night.
We've shed a lot of tears and have had a few laughs as well.

Beth flew from Buffalo to Charlotte. She had a very short time to make her connection. She let me know that she landed and was rushing to another terminal for her flight to Myrtle Beach. I checked online and her flight was slightly delayed. She had time to use the washroom. We were talking as she was walking and continued when she went into the stall. It was one of those days. She sat down and said "*%%$)__^$$ I don't have any toilet paper." We hung up and she called me back when she was walking through the terminal. She said "Mom was looking out for me. I had packages of Kleenex in my pocket".

We love you mom.

Monday, December 25, 2017

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays

I hope you are having a great time with family and friends. We've had a crazy few days here so there hasn't been a lot of knitting.

Match & Move so far.
I like how the colours are working out.

We will be drawing for the Ambah O'Brien Ravelry codes tomorrow.

Don't forget about Boxing Week in the store and online.

Spend $150 in the store (December 27-December 30) and we will give you a one-time coupon to use between January 1 and March 31, 2018 for 20% off your purchase (regular priced items).

Spend $150 online (December 26-December 31) and we will give you a one-time coupon code to use online between January 1 and March 31, 2018 for 20% off your purchase (regular priced items). This coupon code will be emailed to you when your order is shipped.

For every $100 you spend in the store or online between December 26 and December 31, 2017 your name will be entered into a draw. We will draw on Tuesday, January 2.

First prize - a set of Lykke interchangeable needles. You choose the colour from available stock - Indigo, Umber, Black or Grey. If you don't live in the area we will mail them anywhere in North America.

Second prize - a brand new Maker's Keep from Cocoknits. The shipment just arrived and it's going to be hard choosing a colour. They are all great.

There is a football game on and it's time to knit a few rows. Have a good evening and I hope Santa was good to you.

Saturday, December 23, 2017


Diana has a new project. She is going to knit it in the colours shown. They called my name.

Pattern: Butterfly/Papillon (purchased on Ravelry)
Yarn: 2 skeins of Uneek Fingering and 1 skein of Hedgehog Sock

This isn't the best picture but it was the best I could do. Urth Yarns and the Canadian distributor have used this picture on a poster. It is from Ravelry but I don't have permission to use the actual picture. I took a picture of the poster. Sounds convoluted but I want to make sure I'm doing things correct and not using photos that I don't have the rights to use.
Here is another combination that I considered - Uneek Fingering in colour 3003 with a skein of Sweetgeorgia Tough Love Sock in the colour Pistachio.

Take a look at some of the great shawls displayed on Ravelry in the Urth Fingering. And here are some more.

Don't forget that we are giving away some Ravelry Coupon Codes for Ambah O'Brien patterns. You need to enter by midnight Christmas Eve. We will be drawing on Christmas Day.

Read about the giveaway and get your name in the draw here...

While I was working today the cookie elf visited our house. After dinner we are decorating. Then some knitting while watching the football game. I'm looking forward to a few days off. I love the store but a couple days of knitting is very exciting.

Friday, December 22, 2017

Kinetic Cowl

I ended up knitting the cowl last night. Once I got started I didn't give it up. The yarn is really nice to knit with. And the colours are so bold.

We had a very sad situation while I was knitting. The first skein was done and I went to wind the second skein. It's only 60m so I was doing it by hand. I knocked over a full cup of tea. On the yarn. All over the floor. All over other knitting projects. We got it cleaned up but my skein was tangled. I had already cut the knots before the accident and then I threw it when the tea spilled.

We had yarn all around the main floor of the house. It's untangled and I was set to knit again.
The cowl (another Darn Knit Kinetic Cowl) is finished and I love it. I used 2 skeins of Chunky in the colour Moonlit. After the cowl was finished I was able to get the Urth Yarns on the website.

I forgot to mention something about Urth Yarns yesterday. They plant a tree for every skein sold in partnership with Trees for the Future. What a great cause. You can read more about it here.

Now it's back to Match & Move with skinny needles.

Thursday, December 21, 2017

Urth Yarns

Mr. Canpar came in with an unexpected box today. The Urth Yarns are here.
Urth Yarns is a family owned yarn brand specialising in hand dyed natural yarns. We value the time and emotional investment that go into hand knitting; therefore appreciate your demand for a stimulative feel and yummy colours. Developing and employing innovative dyeing techniques, we aim for a love at first sight or touch, every time.
The Uneek yarn collection is composed of rich vibrant colours with an earthy feel, and exceptional softness in every skein! 100% Extrafine Merino 
The colours are amazing. We received two different thicknesses - they are at opposite ends of the spectrum.

60m / 66 yards           
100 GR 
NEEDLE: US 13-17           
GAUGE: 2 STS = 1"

435 YDS           
100 GR 
NEEDLE: US 1-3           
GAUGE: 7-8 STS = 1"
I need to cast on with the chunky tonight. The colours are way too beautiful.
I brought two different colours of the chunky home but I don't know if I'm going to knit with them. Beth claimed them as hers. After I roll the skeins and cast on. :) We're starting with the colour on the left. Now I need to go and get everything ready for her.

Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Merino and Silk

I was at a total loss for today's blog post and then Mr. Canada Post walked into the store with a box from Lynda. She finished an awesome shawl for us.

Pattern: Fealdan Shawl (free on Ravelry)
Yarn: Fino
Elegant and refined, Fino combines the softness of merino wool with the lustre of silk in a lightweight yarn that’s perfect for heirloom accessories or luxurious garments. Fino features a new dye process that yields complex, subtle, tonal colors.

And then Alex came in with her new sweater. She cast it off this morning. Don't look at the tails that need to be sewn in :)

Pattern: Piece of Silver (purchased on Ravelry)
Yarn: Fuse Singles

From the designer, Veera Valimaki
Starting a new project is always exciting. In your hands you hold a new color, a new yarn and new dreams to come true. But in reality, the reward is in the countless hours of knitting, in the smooth movement of the needles, when you see the mystery revealing right under your eyes. I guess that’s why we keep knitting, sweater after sweater! 
Piece of Silver is just that sweater; a sweater that will keep you happy company for many knitting hours, days and weeks to come. And when you finally bind off, you have a lovely relaxing sweater that will keep you happy and warm and that will always hold all the memories when you were knitting it.
It has a cute side vent.

This afternoon Ms. UPS brought in a box from Rowan. We have a new book called The Bottle Green Collection from Quail Studios. This is the cardigan that I'm looking at.

The Tale Long Cardigan is knit with Brush Fleece double stranded on 12mm needles. The back for the largest size is 68 stitches. Talk about super fast and super cozy. When I was showing the pattern to Alex her eyes opened very wide. Her sweater was knit on 3.75mm needles with many more stitches.

It's time to get ready for the season finale of Survivor. It's going to be interesting to see who makes it to the final three.

Tuesday, December 19, 2017

Super Warm

I finished my cowl last night. I had planned on using both balls until they were finished but Beth and I agreed that this was more than long enough. It is super warm.

My mom would call this a snood.
For such a simple word, snood has quite a few meanings. In terms of fashion trends, a snood is basically a tubular scarf, like a large cowl. It differs from an infinity scarf in that it sits higher on the neck and can often act like a hood, whereas an infinity scarf is more of a looped scarf that can sit around the neck. 
I used 3/4 of each ball. If you made the cowl shorter (and maybe not quite as wide) you could easily get two cowls out of two balls. I used Amitola Brushed from Louisa Harding. The pattern is an adaptation of the Ombre Cowl Hood. I cast on 100 stitches with 6.5mm needles.

Lynn brought in her latest project to show me how the yarn is knitting.
She is using one of the new Fino mini skein kits to make the 3 Color Cashmere Cowl. The yarn is super soft.

Need a last minute gift? We just received more Leather Cord and Needle Stitch Holder Kits from Cocoknits.
Use the Stitch Holder Kit in lieu of scrap yarn whenever you need to hold live stitches. The threaded needles allow you to knit off of your leather cord. 
The Leather Cord and Needle Stitch Holder Kit contains: 
two interior-threaded needles made of nickel plated steel 
three lengths of leather cord 
one long – for holding sts of sweater body (59"/150 cm) 
two short – for holding sts of sleeves (29.5"/75 cm) 
Keep the contents of your kit in the reusable kraft drawer, lined with 100% wool felt.

I got to work this morning and was able to breathe a sigh of relief. My knitting was in the store. I think I would cry if I lost something that I've been working on for a month.

Beth is working on the game for Christmas Day.
There will be 12 boxes in total. The first box is the smallest. It is wrapped and then put inside the next box. It is wrapped and goes inside the next box. It is quite a process. And eats a lot of wrapping paper. I had to hide my really good wrapping paper.

During the game you are wearing oven mitts (we can't make it easy) and have so long to try and unwrap the first box. Then the next person tries. Oh yeah. There is a lot of tape. A lot. Packing tape that really sticks. Once the first box is done it's time to get the next one open. The game can take quite a while.

The person who unwraps the last box gets the prize inside.