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Doris Chan rejuvenates crochet

While we’ve been hearing about the return of crochet for a few years now, little has come out that’s been exciting or new. Until now.

Doris Chan’s Amazing Crochet Lace: New Fashions Inspired by Old-Fashioned Lace is exciting and new and has me ready to pick up the nearest crochet hook and get started.

Doris’s concept is, at first glance, simple – take traditional lace motifs and enlarge them with chunkier yarn and bigger hooks. It’s what she calls “exploded lace”.

The difficulty arises in construction. But fear not, because aside from reading how Doris experimented and solved these puzzles, you don’t have to do a thing except follow her directions.

We are very pleased that Doris will join us on Saturday, December 1 at 1 pm to demonstrate her cast-on and to talk about her book. We hope you’ll come and see what’s new in crochet!

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Meet Suss Cousins

Suss Cousins will be at Loop this Saturday, November 11 at 1 pm to celebrate her new book, Home Knits. Suss’s knitting has taken her from her native Sweden to New York to Hollywood, and she has some wonderful stories to share.

Suss Cousin's Home Knits
Home Knits features 30 modern designs for the home arranged by room – living room, bedroom and bath, and dining room and kitchen. The degree of difficulty ranges from easy to challenging.

Crystal Table Runner
The Crystal Table Runner is knit in soft angora and embellished with shiny lurex and crystal beads. It’s a lovely decoration for the dining room. And like so many of the projects in the book, it would be a great holiday gift, especially for newly-weds or friends in a new home.

Suss Cousins Alpaca Lampshades
In their book, Mason Dixon Knitting, Ann and Kay talked about how they enjoyed knitting things other than garments, so they could have knitted items all over the house. Suss does this in many wonderful ways, including with lighting.

Suss Cousins Alpaca Lampshades
The Alpaca Lampshades look beautiful with the lamp off and so cozy with the lights on.

In addition to her yarns that we already carry, Suss sent us a sampling of the yarns she used in her book. There’s a soft brushed alpaca, a crisp cotton, and a cool ultrasuede.

We hope you’ll join us in welcoming Suss and celebrating Home Knits!

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an evening with Melissa

Fans, friends, and alums from last winter’s classes came last night to see Melissa Leapman and her new book, Cables Untangled.

Like so many others, I’ve always been a little intimidated by cables; not because they’re difficult necessarily but because they require so much attention. (I’ll confess that most of my knitting happens in front of the TV or while I’m talking with other knitters!) So I was surprised when Melissa said she wrote this book because cables are her favorite kind of knitting. She assured me that cables don’t require all the energy I thought, especially since many of the motifs can be memorized as you repeat them.

Cables Untangled begins with a comprehensive guide to cabling that explains cables and twists, reading charts, designing with cables, and related techniques. There are great illustrations and Melissa’s clear teaching style really comes through in writing.

The pattern section of the book starts with easier projects and progresses to the more complex. There are over 20 designs including garments, accessories, and home items.

This is one of the first patterns in the book – a comfy sweater with a big cable down the front. Melissa helped Lori, one of her new fans, pick the lilac shade of Blue Sky Bulky Hand Dyes for her sweater.

Melissa brought this sweater with her for us to see. It’s a great project for the adventurous cable knitter. And kids’ sweaters are a fun way to try out new skills.

Even though we tend to think of cables on winter sweaters, Melissa designed this summer tank in a light weight bulky cotton.

Cables Untangled ends with a large dictionary of 100 cable stitches. I didn’t realize until last night that Melissa designed many of these herself, they are originals that can only be found here.

When the night ended and we said our good-byes, everyone left with their autographed copy in hand, planning their first – or latest – cable venture. If you didn’t make it last night, come get your copy and get cabling!

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meet Melissa Leapman

That’s right, Melissa Leapman is coming back to Loop! Please join us on Friday, October 27th, at 7 PM to celebrate the release of Melissa’s fantastic new book, Cables Untangled.

Melissa is an incredible talent who divides her time between teaching and knitwear design. She’s also a lot of fun! We’re thrilled that she’s taking time out of her busy schedule to stop by.

So, come have a glass of wine, peruse her new book and help us welcome her! See you then!

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Annie Modesitt’s visit

We had a great day with Annie yesterday. It was an early Sunday – especially for Annie who lives a couple hours away – but everyone was ready and excited to learn about combination knitting. The class did great and Annie ended with a lesson in cabling without a cable needle.

Here she is with everyone watching –

Annie Modesitt teaching at Loop
Oh mighty X!

After a quick break for lunch, the afternoon class, Knitting with Wire, began. Annie’s book, Twist and Loop, has dozens of patterns and ideas for knitted and crocheted wire jewelry. She brought the projects from the book for us to see; they are spectacular! I can’t wait until the book comes out later this month.

Annie Modesitt teaching at Loop

Annie has so much knowledge to share and a wonderful sense of humor. Her classes are a great knitting experience.

Annie will be back on November 19 for a repeat performance. The Combination Knitting class is full, but there’s still room in the Knitting with Wire class. Call now to reserve your space!

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Wendy knits – and visits, too

Wendy Johnson of visited us last Saturday afternoon. Local fans filled the store to meet her and to hear her read from her book, Wendy Knits.

Wendy Johnson at Loop

After the reading, everyone got their book signed and enjoyed talking to Wendy about her, and their, knitting. There was time for a quick group shot before Wendy was off for home.


From the left that’s Kathy, Wendy, Rachel, and Laura. You’ll notice that Craig and Grace are missing. Grace was on vacation – and we’re told had a wonderful time! – and Craig was in Indianapolis at the Summer Market. Both were sorry to miss Wendy; maybe she’ll come again! Until then, we have her wonderful book – there’s a few left if you haven’t picked up a copy yet.