Trick or Treat

November is Around the Corner

Good Morning and Happy Halloween!

Sebastopol Knitting ClassesHow are you feeling today, well I hope? Do you have a treat for the Tricker’s? Can you believe that Tomorrow is the first day of November?


Great One-Skein Christmas Projects

Sonoma County Knitting ClassesI have been getting a lot of people in lately getting their projects for the holidays. There is still lots of time for you too. I have a lot yarn for easy one skein projects that can be completed in a few hours.

If you need help with ideas and instruction for projects for the holidays, let us know. We have some classes scheduled this month for some of those. We are always open to suggestions though? What would you like to learn?




We Have Wonderful Classes with Individual Attention

A sample of our classes this month –

Slippers, you can knit and felt these or just knit a pair, crochet both ways too.

Hats knitted or crochet, lots of styles to choose from. We have a class on a cabled one.

Socks, while daily in your shoes socks can take a while house socks are an idea.

Feather and fan scarf. An easy lace pattern, can be knit or crocheted. You don’t have to do this with fine lace weight, it can also be done with a worsted or chunky yarn. We have some great novelty yarn with sparkles and such, something very simple can be made into something fantastic just by changing the yarn.

Felted bag, although the class for this one is a knitted tote type there are many others that are also really cute. Crocheters can do this too, it’s not all for knitters only.

Felted hat although this class for this one is for a certain style the possibilities are endless once you get the process down.


In-Person Classes Help You Master Techniques Faster

Sonoma County Knitting ClassWhile I am on the subject of classes, have you used You Tube or videos to learn things? While I think these are great tools, I use them too from time to time, they are not for everyone. We all learn differently. So many people come in after working with videos asking for help with things they didn’t understand.

You know what it’s like when you have someone teaching you face to face sometimes, you think you are doing exactly as they are but you come to find out you are not. It just doesn’t work out. Well with videos you don’t have someone to point out when you have it right or you have to do something just a little bit differently to get the right result. That is where we come in.

We can show you that by slightly altering the way you are holding something, or where you are placing something can be the difference in success or not. I don’t like to use the word failure, you don’t fail, you just do not always do it successfully. There are no silly questions only the ones you don’t ask. There are no mistakes only lessons. I and all of my teachers love what we do and love passing that information, craft on to others. We are extremely patient and welcome all levels. We don’t know everything but what we do know we will gladly share with you.


Original Kits Coming to Yarnitudes

As you know I like to design patterns, and that when I do, I don’t like to write up the patterns. Well I have been trying to be better about this. So I have recently written two new ones.

One, the Badlands shawl which is now ready. Yarn for this one is now in, more on its way.

Two, the cashmere and diamonds neck warmer, which I am putting together as a kit. The idea for this design came from some exquisite yarn I have, that is quite luxurious, 65% cashmere and 35% silk. I only have four of these kits available so I am sure they won’t last long. A sample of the design is on display in the shop. I hope to be doing more of these limited kits in the future.

Whether these are something you would like to knit up for that very special person in your life, or something that special knitter in your life would like as a gift. We are planning for You.


Gift ListStart Your Wish List at Yarnitudes

Lastly this week, don’t forget your personal list for Santa. We already have some started. Come in, pick out all the things you would like someone to buy for you and write them on a list. Then you can tell anyone that wants to know what to get you for Christmas that we have your list in the store. They can then come in, or contact us and we can guide them to what you would like. That way, you get what you want and we know what to make sure we have in stock for you. OK I am going to leave you for this week, and get on with my planning.


Take good care of yourself and I will be back next week.

All the best ~Trudy



Do You Love Yarn, Fiber & Color?

Yarn Addiction-Who Me?

How have you been, a good week? Settling into fall OK?

Do you have your costume ready for Halloween? I just thought of a great idea. Get a big clear plastic bag, or cling film. Make holes for your arms and legs.   Have your head out, I think that may help. Fill the bag with all of your stash, OK some of your stash. Place a half finished hat or scarf on, still on the needles, or hooks, this is good for either or, and then you could go as knitting or crochet. OK, may be not such a great idea. Only fellow yarnies would understand and I guess we don’t want to give away how much stash we really have.

Sonoma County Yarn Shop

Love Our Sheepies?

I will soon be placing another order for Sheepies. If you are interested in any one in particular, please let me know as soon as possible so that I can make sure to have them here for the holidays. If you are not familiar with Sheepies, they are wonderfully soft, baby, child and even our age safe, things to snuggle up with. Some may say a toy, I on the other hand think of them as companions. Trevor will be visiting the UK in late November and I’l have my Sheepie.

Knitting gifts Sebstopol

Gifts at Yarnitudes-Locally Made Earrings & Bracelets

Speaking of sheep, you know I love all things sheep related, after all what would we do without them. OK, alpacas, llamas, buffalo, the odd vegetation would work too. We now have some locally made earrings and bracelets for sale in the shop. Be sure to check them out for the sheep lover on your gift list. Were you able to knit up any pumpkins? At least with these you can have them out on display all Autumn and Fall, not like the jack o lanterns that are only really good for Halloween.

Here is a photo of some lovely miniatures sent to me by one of our knitters. She likes to call our knitting group her group therapy. We do have fun. Aren’t they adorable?

Sonoma County Knitting Classes

Marcie’s Question–Sequence Knitting

Sonoma County Knitting ClassesOK so on to a question from Marcia. Sequence knitting how do you use it?

The concept of Sequence Knitting is simple: take a sequence of stitches and repeat them again and again. Depending on how you repeat them, different fabrics can be created. While a few of these fabrics are familiar, many are new to the knitting world.

I found a wonderful book on the subject interestingly enough called ‘Sequence Knitting’. Beginning with 1 row patterns, it is possible to knit complex designs. This can be done back and forth, in the round and in shapes. The book is a great resource for the whole procedure with stitch dictionaries of over 190 fabrics many new and reversible. The author of this book is a local, kind of, she lives in Silicon Valley.

A basic form of sequence knitting is ribbing, and seed stitch This is a one row pattern. A 1 x 1 rib is just knitting 1 and purling 1 again and again across the row. If the amount of stitches you have on the needle is an even number and you are just doing the 1×1 you will just keep doing k1,p1, each and every row.   This would apply both to flat and circular knitting.

If you introduce an additional stitch this then becomes an odd number and doing the 1×1 rib now becomes a seed stitch, again this works the same flat or circular. The same thing applies if you add a little extra stitch or two to the rib, knitting the same thing k2,p2, or k1,p2, k3,p1. By knitting the same sequence over and over you don’t have a lengthy pattern stitch to remember and it can almost become quite brainless. Just by adding a stitch or two to the cast on amount will completely change the fabric made. This type of knitting is great for all types of garments that have pretty simple lines, although can be adapted. A great example would be scarves, or cowls. Perhaps a boxy cardigan or kimono.


Ravelry a Great Resource

RavelryThis is a very simplistic and basic account of the procedure. If this interests you and you want to know more might I suggest you invest in the book, I can order some for the shop. I will also have one here for reference. It is an extremely informative, well illustrated book. Trying to explain all there is to it in this newsletter format is nigh on impossible. I would also be happy to explain more to you one on one in the shop.

There are many examples of sequence knitting on Ravelry. If you do not have a Ravelry account or do not know what Ravelry is, we will be pleased to show and explain this to you at a later date.


As we are moving away from paper patterns, we now have a shop IPad that is available for you to browse at your leisure.

Well another newsletter comes to a close. Was it interesting? Any ideas or questions. I am always ready to answer as many topics as I can.

Please enjoy your week, take care and I will see you next time.


Sebastopol Yarn Shop

We’ve Stocked Up for Christmas

The Yarn Choices Are Incredible

Well hello again, did you miss me?

As I say to a rep who keeps calling me, when she says have you missed me, “what, you never give me time to miss you”. I hope you have had a great week.

Well what is new and exciting in the Yarnitudes world?


We’ve Stocked Up for Christmas

Sonoma County Yarn StoreAt Yarnitudes, we have been stocking up for Christmas. It is getting harder every day to find the space to put things. The yarn choices are just incredible these days. Can you believe with all we have in the store there is still more out there?

As always we are looking for the best value we can find for you. How did we get by for so many years with so little choice? Now it can almost seem overwhelming. This is such a small sample of our offerings below.

Sonoma County Knitting Classes

Future Plans-Samples Made From New Yarn

Sonoma County Yarn ShopI have decided in the future when adding a new line, I will first make something from the yarn. I will put it out on display and see the kind of response I get. If the response is great enough I will then make it an addition to the family of yarn, we already carry. I did this recently with a new yarn to us, called Millefiori from Italy, it is by Berocco, 100g and, 186 yds per ball, 4.5 sts=1”, needle size 8, hook size H. The fiber is comprised of 50% wool 50% acrylic. It comes in eight glorious color blends that knit up into random patterns. This yarn feels fantastic, soft with just a hint of shimmer. I chose to experiment with the colorway Snapdragon, 7887. I knitted up a lovely shawl, and I wrote up the pattern, are you shocked?

I know I do keep getting myself into trouble when I don’t write the pattern too. It is now being test knitted by Peggy, bless her soul. I called it Sunset over the Badlands. It would seem that it is a hit and therefore we will be carrying it very soon. I just love all of the colors, I think after Snapdragon my favorite has to be Viola. What do you think? Great colors, yes? Once the pattern has been tested it will be free with the yarn purchase.


You Can Find the Time to Knit

Sebastopol Knitting ClassesSometimes I hear the phrase,” I just don’t have time to knit any more”. There is always time to knit. One stitch at a time, that’s all it takes. I myself have said that of late. I don’t mean I have no time to knit, just that I might not be knitting on my own projects, or ones that I really want to knit.

However I always find some time during a day to at least pick up my needles for at least one row. I do have numerous projects on the go at one time I admit, some have shorter rows than others and this does help.

Depending on how much time I find myself with will determine which project I pick up.   Also everyone who knows me knows I always have at least one project with me no matter where I go. Dentist, Doctor, hair salon, oil change, etc. etc. It makes the wait always so much shorter.


Tips for Making Projects Portable

Tips for a portable project:

  • Keep it small, make sure you have everything you may need with you.
  • Make sure it isn’t too complicated, you don’t want to get called mid pattern repeat.
  • Make sure you have your markers, just in case you drop a stitch and a small hook to rescue if you can.
  • Most of our group knitters now have a little blue box, this has the space for everything you might want, all in one place nice and secure. It is very inexpensive too. You will be surprised just how much you can get into such a small neat and compact space.
  • If you know time is short, try just making washcloths, apart from being a nice gift, they are a gift to you. You can learn so much on one little cloth. If you don’t want to give them as gifts, save them up and make a nice afghan or bed cover. So much can be done with a bunch of squares. Cardigans, sweaters, wraps, dresses, just takes a little imagination.

Sonoma County Yarn Shop


Questions From a Reader

I am going to share something I just received from a reader, If you have the time, you might want to think about this –

“Hi Trudy, I was just doing a quick read through your September newsletter and saw the article regarding giving your knit items to charity. I wanted to encourage knitters and those who crochet to give their “time” to charity. There are many places who would probably appreciate someone volunteering to give a lesson on knit or crochet.

I have been giving knitting lessons at a residential chemical recovery center for women. I’ve been doing this for three years and the women seem to love it and they and the staff are always very thankful and appreciative towards me. And by the way, we depend completely upon donations of yarn, needles, and hooks. So donating supplies is also very appreciated. Clean out those stashes and give that and your time to charity!”

Well, I think that’s about all for this week. Next week I will answer another question, this time on Sequence Knitting.

I hope you have a fantastic week. Come and join us if you can for one of our knitting gatherings. Enjoy every minute.

Take care ~ Trudy

Yarn Substitutions and More

Newsletter Changes-You Can Help Us


How are you this week?

First of all this week I would like to take care of a little housekeeping, I guess that is what they call it. We have been trying a different way of sending these weekly emails. If you have been with us since the beginning you will have noticed the changes over the years.

Anyway, in order to help the store get the biggest exposure and therefore the customers, who keep us in business, we need to get the most hits on our website. My web designer is probably having fits that I am telling you all this. So the beginning of the newsletter is coming to you the same way it always has, via email. But, in order to read the whole thing, if you are interested, you now need to click through to the website, where the rest of the email is. Some of you I notice are doing this and some just stop at the link and go no further. I understand you may not have a lot of time to spend on this but it really does help us. By helping us you can help us continue to help you. So if you enjoy reading the emails please click through to the website, this is where all the meat is and all of the classes too!

A big thank you for reading this and our week.



Sonoma County Knitting Classes

Now on with the good stuff………………….

How is October treating you? Are you ready for the Goblins, Ghoolies and Ghosties? I really prefer the fairies myself. Some might say I live with the fairies. Oh well.

Sebastopol Yarn ShopSonoma County Yarn ShopSonoma County Knitting Classes

Sonoma County Yarn ShopI wonder how many people knit for Halloween, do you? Coming from England I can’t say it was ever a big holiday over there. I think it has changed though. Due to the media and the general availability for the world to share traditions.

I do wonder though where pumpkins fare in the whole Halloween scheme? How did they become such a great presence in this holiday? I really can’t remember seeing pumpkins in England. I guess they must have been around, just not something familiar in our family.

How did the first Jack-O-Lantern come to be? I guess I could Google it. I can’t really say I have ever thought that much about it before. I guess that is what happens when I start thinking; I mean thinking about what to write to you about this week. How many people do you think knitted the pumpkins from the pattern we told you about?


Now this is a nice one!

Anyway if you want to knit a pumpkin, a pie or any other thing your heart desires, I bet we could find one for you.

oldladyNow to the question I said I would answer – A cheat sheet for substituting yarn. I admit it, I am not one of those people who likes to go exactly by the book. If I see something I like, I think well I like that but I think I would like it more if it were………………. So for me substituting yarn is something I have been doing ever since I started to knit/crochet.

In the beginning it was because all the patterns were written for a specific yarn and for one, I could never find it and if I did it was outside of my price range. Remember when I started knitting all I had was my babysitting money, which was nothing like the money kids get for babysitting these days. Wow I do sound like an old Fogy.


Substituting Yarn

Now this is a nice one!

Anyway if you want to knit a pumpkin, a pie or any other think your heart desires, I bet we could find one for you.

Now to the question I said I would answer – A cheat sheet for substituting yarn. I admit it, I am not one of those people who likes to go exactly by the book. If I see something I like, I think well I like that but I think I would like it more if it were………………. So for me substituting yarn is something I have been doing ever since I started to knit/crochet.

In the beginning it was because all the patterns were written for a specific yarn and for one, I could never find it and if I did it was outside of my price range. Remember when I started knitting all I had was my babysitting money, which was nothing like the money kids get for babysitting these days. Wow I do sound like an old Fogy.


Yarn Weight US Needle size Sts per inch, usually in st,st.

Common Uses

Lace 000-1 8-10 Lace Knitting
Fingering 1-3 7-8 Lighter garments and socks
DK sport 3-7 5-6 Light garments
Worsted 7-8 4-5 Sweaters, hats. Outer wear
Aran 8-9 4-5 Cold weather clothing
Chunky 10-11 3-3 1/2 Jackets blankets
Superbulky 13-15 2-2 1/2 Heavy sweaters, afghans



These are just examples and your gauge is the important thing.

The type of garment you are making must be taken into consideration. Do you want a sturdy fabric, something that will hold its shape and give good stitch definition?

Do you want something that has a lot of drape?

Do you just want the warmth but not too bothered about stitch definition?

What exactly is the fabric to be used for?


The pattern will give you the idea on this, but for example if the pattern says wool and you are allergic to wool you will need to substitute, so look for something that has the same character structure. If you are looking for a sturdy cardigan you might want to think twice about substituting Alpaca for wool. Alpaca although extremely warm will not hold up to the use that a wool garment will, so be careful and pick a blend. You may need to mix this with some wool to get the same effect. When using cotton as a substitute, remember it will grow, cotton has no memory so will continue to stretch unless the gauge is extremely tight.

How much yarn depends on how thick or thin the yarn is and what size needle you use. Something make from thick yarn will need a lot less than something that uses a fine yarn, as it has to do so much work to fill in the space between spaces.

Anyway, these are just examples, something for you to think about. We are here and happy to help you and answer your questions and to assist in finding you the right substitution.

Sonoma County Yarn Shop

I hope that this has helped a little in understanding how to find the perfect yarn for your project. I hope I wasn’t too long winded, and have made you fall asleep. I need to move on to typing up my latest project now though. I love to design my projects not so much writing the patterns, so wish me luck. If I manage to get it finished I will share it with you in the weeks to come.

Have a great week, looking forward to seeing you very soon.

Take care ~ Trudy