Building Blocks Afghan Class

by Laura on September 2, 2014

building-blocks_large

Now that you’ve been knitting awhile, you probably have a few things down pat: the knit stitch, the purl stitch, casting on and casting off. You may even be comfortable with increasing and decreasing- good for you! You have the skills and you’re ready for anything- what to do? Try the Building Blocks Afghan. It’s a great way to build your skills by learn to knit 12 different blocks each with a new stitch pattern. At the end, you’ll have a cozy afghan for snuggling up!

This season we’re offering a monthly class to knit the Building Blocks Afghan together. You’ll learn a new block each month and at the end you’ll learn how to seam them together to complete the afghan. This is a great opportunity to learn something new in manageable increments and knit with others!

Class starts October 4 and will be held the first Saturday OR first Wednesday of every month and run through the following year.

Here’s all the details:

BUILDING BLOCKS BLANKET
$288 for twelve 2-hour classes
prerequisites: cast on, knit, purl, increase, decrease

Wednesdays, October 1, November 5, December 3, January 7, 2015, February 4, March 4, April 1, May 6, June 3, July 1, August 5, September 2, 6-8pm

Saturday, October 4, November 1, December 6, January 3, 2015, February 7, March 7, April 4, May 2, June 6, July 11, August 1, September 5, 11am-1pm

supplies: Building Blocks by Michelle Hunter, 10-12 skeins of Hikoo Simpliworsted (10 if you use one color for every block, 12 if you use a different color for each block), US10 needles or size to get gauge, stitch markers, darning needle, row counter.

You can pay for this class in 4 quarterly payments of $72, with your commitment to participate for the year. Purchase all of your yarn at the start of the class, you’ll receive a 10% discount on the cost of the yarn. Pay for the full class and the yarn when you register and receive 20% off both!

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CustomFit – A New Way to Knit a Sweater

by Laura on August 28, 2014

Laura wearing her CustomFit cardigan.

Me in my CustomFit cardigan knit in Brooklyn Tweed Shelter in cast iron.

CustomFit is a new sweater knitting program that allows us to create a sweater pattern just for you – using your measurements and your knitting gauge. Erika, Kathy, and I have already knit CustomFit sweaters for ourselves and we’re thrilled with the results. And we’re excited for you to have the same fantastic sweater knitting experience!

Kathy in her CustomFit pullover.

Kathy in her CustomFit pullover knit with Spud & Chloe Sweater yarn in toast.

How many times have you accepted clothing not fitting properly because “your arms are too long”, “your shoulders are narrow”, or you’re just “too small” or “too big” in some way. CustomFit’s approach is that it’s not your body or your knitting that’s wrong – it’s garments that are based on the “average” woman, not me and not you.

Erika in her CustomFit cardigan.

Erika in her CustomFit Cardigan knit with Berroco Ultra Alpaca.

Here’s how CustomFit works. You choose your yarn and knit your swatch. We calculate your gauge, we take your measurements, you choose the type of sweater you want to knit, and we create your pattern.

I know that having your measurements taken may not be your favorite part of the process, but it’s the most important step in getting a good fit. Kathy, Erika, and I are here to make it as easy as possible. We all have our insecurities, and I promise there are no judgments here!

If you’d like to take your measurements yourself, that’s ok too! We’ll give you a list of the information we need and some tips for doing it.

There are 3 ways you can knit your own CustomFit sweater this season.

CUSTOMFIT SWEATER CLASS
$72 for three 2-hour sessions, includes pattern

Preparation is key for a successful sweater. In this class, we’ll take your measurements, discuss yarn selection and swatching, help you measure your gauge, and choose your sweater design elements. Once your pattern is complete, we’ll review the patterns and answer any questions before you cast on.

You can use any weight yarn with CustomFit. If this is your first sweater, we recommend worsted weight yarn.

Supplies: You’ll select your yarn during the first class and begin swatching. Please bring several sizes of needles that will work with the yarn weight you think you’ll choose.

CUSTOMFIT SWEATER CONSULTATION
$35, for one 1-hour session, includes pattern

Come to your sweater consultation with a completed swatch. We’ll calculate your gauge, take your measurements, and help you choose your sweater design elements.

CUSTOMFIT PATTERN
$10

Come in to get the directions for your swatch and your yarn. We’ll take your measurements or we’ll give you a list of what we need for you to take home. Bring back your completed swatch and measurements, if you took them yourself. We’ll help you choose your sweater design and prepare your custom pattern.

ALWAYS GET THE HELP YOU NEED
Whether you take the Sweater Class, Consultation, or purchase a CustomFit Pattern, we’ll help you through your project. Stop in when you have questions about the pattern and the finishing.

We also offering finishing. You knit the pieces and let us assemble your sweater for you!

However you go about it, we encourage you to try CustomFit this season!

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Little Wave & Cordwood Cowl Knitalong

by Craig on August 21, 2014

Little Wave Cardigan

The votes are in and Little Wave came out on top! Gudrun Johnston designed this saddle shoulder cabled cardigan for her son – what a lucky and stylish kid – and later sized it for a range of women’s and men’s sizes.

Little Wave was designed with Brooklyn Tweed Shelter, which is a wonderful yarn for sweaters, especially ones with cables. Shelter is lightly spun wool so garments are warm but light weight and comfortable.

Leila Raabe's Cordwood Cowl

The runner-up was Leila Raabe’s Cordwood Cowl. It’s a beautiful piece, also designed with Shelter, that can be worn in one long circle or doubled for a closer fit.

Because some people said they didn’t think they could fit a sweater into their fall knitting plans, we’re going to include both patterns in our knitalong.

The knitalong officially begins September 1, but if you’re ready, you can start at any time. Post a picture of your finished project by October 31, 2014 and you:

– could be the winner of a $20 Loop gift card (winner will be randomly selected)

– will receive a gift card for 10% of the cost of the yarn (if you purchased your yarn from Loop and told us you were using it for the knitalong.)

To join the knitalong, visit the forum thread, and tell us which pattern you’ll be knitting and which yarn you’re using. I hope you’ll join us!

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Cast Your Vote for the Next Knitalong

by Craig on August 19, 2014

Cast your vote for the Early Fall 2014 Knitalong! The winner will be announced on Thursday and the knitalong will begin September 1, 2014.

KAL Nominees

The nominees are:

left column from top to bottom:
Little Wave by Gudrun Johnston
Cordwood by Leila Raabe
Venta by Michele Wang

center column:
Seacoast by Joji Locatelli

right column from top to bottom:
Autumn Vines by Alana Dakos
Henrietta by Kate Gagnon Osborn
Fireweeds by Rose Hiver

Vote now!

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Introducing Knightsbridge

by Craig on August 13, 2014

Knightsbridge, The Fibre Company’s new yarn for Fall 2014, arrived today with the trunk show for The Knightsbridge Collection – 15 beautiful, new designs. Laura and I fell in love with the yarn and the garments when we first saw them at the summer trade show – and we think you will too!

The trunk show is in the shop through the end of the month. Please come in to see and feel this collection!

Knightsbridge Yarn
65% baby llama, 25% merino wool, and 10% silk.
light worsted, 5-5.5 stitches per inch on a size US 5-6 needle.
50 grams / 120 yards

Knightsbridge

top row: Concordia, Black Pool, Bishop’s Green, Redwick, and Barley.
middle row: Bleu Tarn, Grasmere, Cornwall, Winesteeple, and Flintshire.
bottom row: Skyworth, Poole, Goldfirth, and Beaverden.

The Knightsbridge Collection
The 15 garments and accessories in the Knightsbridge Collection were designed by Kelbourne Woolens – The Fibre Company’s distributor – and by a number of independent designers. There are 5 pullovers, a cardigan, a shrug, a pullover vest, a cardigan vest, 2 hats, 2 scarves, a cowl, and a pair of legwarmers.

knightsbridge_collage

clockwise from top left: Harvey by Maura Kirk; Teegan by Courtney Kelley; and Maeve by Bristol Ivy.

With textured stitches, cables, and modern shapes – the designs are very fall and very wearable! A few of my favorites are above; see the whole collection here.

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Let Your Heart Unwind KAL Moving Along!

by Craig on August 13, 2014

While many of us are making good progress with our Let Your Heart Unwind (LYHU) shawls, a few have already finished, and they look fantastic!

Cristina's Shawl Cristina’s LYHU shawl.

Cristina was the first to finish. I’m amazed at how quickly she knit her shawl. I know I’m a slow knitter, but I guess I’m slower than I thought!

Cristina’s also been extremely generous with helping others when they’ve run into trouble.

Katie's Shawl Katie’s finished shawl.

Katie noticed early on that her shawl was coming out short. LYHU is knit sideways, so we’ve been measuring along the top, which the pattern said is 60 inches long, after blocking.

Thinking it was going to be too short, Katie added two more sections before the decreases began. Her final blocked shawl is 52 inches wide – smaller than expected – but Katie said that she’s happy with it and that it’s actually a better size for her.

icedteaknits Cynthia’s LYHU shawl.

Cynthia’s beautiful shawl is made in one of my favorite Madelinetosh colors, Iris. She said she knit it while watching three seasons of Hell on Wheels. I watch a lot of TV myself, so I can relate to marathon watching. I’ve been watching Teen Wolf while knitting my LYHU, which is a little embarrassing to admit, but it’s really a better show than the you’d think from the name.

Anyway, after blocking, Cynthia’s shawl measures 60 inches across the top. Right on target!

The differences between these shawls is a great example of how there’s not always a right and a wrong in knitting. We all knit differently and we each have our own preferences. It’s ok to make changes to a pattern. And it’s ok not to!

For more progress pictures and more about the shawl, visit the KAL thread on Ravelry. The KAL officially ends August 31, so there’s still time to join in. As you can see, LYHU is a beautiful design that looks great in lots of different yarns and colors.

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