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Goodbye Lesley & Fond Memories

Hello Spring

Good morning again, how is spring treating you so far? Are you managing to avoid the dreaded allergies or have they caught you?

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Sad News to Share

This week I have to share some sad news and this letter from Lesley.

Good Morning Friend.

Lesley here. I just wanted to say good morning and hello to you one last time. It is with a heavy heart that I tell you I will be leaving the store at the end of the month. My last days at the shop will be this Wednesday and Friday. It has been a wonderful couple of years.   Although this is hard, I know it is what we need to do. I can’t be in the store as much as I would like, and it is too hard for Lilly to be at the store all day.  

Over the last couple of years you have become not only my friend, but you are my extended family. I have loved helping you find just the right pattern and yarn for your project. I too learned as we worked out the kinks and the rough parts. I have loved teaching classes and sharing new skills with you. But it has not been just about yarn. We have talked about life and about the world. Yarnitudes is so much more than a store. It is home.  

I know Trudy will take wonderful care of you as she always has. Your trusty instructors will still be here to answer questions and help you along the way. I know Trudy has some exciting new things planned for you; new yarn, new classes, and new events. So stay tuned.

Please know that I will miss you – my friend, my family. I know Lilly will miss all her “Aunties and Uncles” too. I will be back to visit but I will be away for a while to try and let my heart heal. I hope you understand.

Goodbye, and as always – happy yarning.

As I said sad news, Lesley will be greatly missed. She has worked hard here to help us all. This is however an amazing opportunity to spend the most wonderful years watching Lilly grow and being the best wife and mother to her family. I can see it now, sharing everything she knows with her daughter. I am sure I join you in wishing her the very best.

 

Have We Got Buttons

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Have you ever spent a lot of time making something only to find the buttons just didn’t measure up to your idea of a finished project. It’s true buttons can make or break a garment.

Put a generic button on something and it can look OK, but find the right button and it will really pop. Turning it from ordinary to extraordinary.

Recently we were visited by a rep from a button company, I am now calling him the ‘button man’ he had two very large suitcases full of cards and cards of buttons. As you can imagine it was really hard to stop from going absolutely crazy, we wanted to buy so many.

Anyway, we did, we think, get a good selection. We already had quite a selection but now that selection has grown and I think we have a little something of everything for everyone.

 

 

Sebastopol Knitting ClassesThere are buttons for kids, both modern and traditional. There is one I particularly fell in love with. I don’t know if you have seen or heard of Holly Hobby, It may be an English thing.

It was a selection of prints, possibly dolls, and patterns of little girls wearing the long dresses with an apron, (pinafore) and a really cute hat with a very wide brim and a puffed up back. Great description I know.

I will try to find a picture. Anyway, it reminds me of an outfit I made for Laura to attend a cousins wedding, Laura was about 2 at the time. Soooo, cute!

 

Creative Ideas with Buttons

Lesley gave me the idea for this week’s newsletter, so here it is–

Another thing is decorating with buttons, I saw a post on Facebook the other day, about making a bowl out of buttons. It looked really fun and when I can find time to play I might actually make one for myself. I have spent ages going back through Facebook to find it but no luck.

Anyway, you start with common old balloon. Blow it up so that it is sturdy but has a little give, you don’t want it to burst on you but you do want it to hold in place. Find the center of a roll of masking tape or something similar, you can actually just use a roll of tape, as it is only as a holder. Place the balloon tied side down on the roll. Paint the top of the balloon or where you would think you would like the shape of the bowl to be with just ordinary white glue. Let it dry completely.

Then with a layer of Mod Podge place the buttons, starting at the top, this will be the bottom of the finished bowl. You do need a somewhat flattish button, any shanks should be removed. Place the right side of the button against the balloon. Make sure all buttons touch.

When you think, you have the shape and size you want cover with another layer of Mod Podge and let dry. When completely dry apply one more coat, let this dry also. Then comes the magic. Gently let the air out of the balloon and peel away the rubber from the buttons. Voila! You have a very pretty and useful bowl. A project to do with the kids perhaps, or just have fun on your own. It could also make a nice gift, never too early to think about stock piling a few of those for the holidays.

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Although I couldn’t find the post itself by requesting button bowls on google this came up, same thing. In a few years, this is something I can see Lesley doing with Lilly.

Well I think I am going to leave it at that for this week. A lot to think about and lots of planning to do. I will however be back next week to talk about Lace weight yarn and colors.

Our featured pattern and image this week is from claire Garland: http://claire-garland.blogspot.com/2012/01/free-pattern-felted-bunny.html

Until then in Lesley’s words, Happy Yarning-Trudy

Africa & Visiting Mum

No Newsletter Last Week

Sebastopol Yarn ShopWell hi there, did you miss me?

Sorry there wasn’t an email last week. I was given the opportunity to go on a business trip with my husband and then afterwards to see my mum.

A chance I couldn’t miss. I think you will agree though that I left you in very capable hands, apart from the newsletter you probably didn’t ever realize I wasn’t around.

I was lucky enough to visit a country I had never had the opportunity to visit before, South Africa. I only got to see a very small part of it though, Johannesburg. That was where most of the business was handled.

 

 

South Africa

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I guess it wasn’t quite what I had expected. I had of course heard about South Africa, a lot of it not good over the years. The part I experienced was almost the same as any other big city. Way too many cars. It took Trevor and one of the people he had gone to see, almost two hours to drive back to the hotel after meetings one evening. They only had to travel 7 miles. It almost made the traffic here look insignificant.

The same shops, some of the same restaurants and coffee shops. Once out of the city though traffic moved easily, lots of new motorways and toll roads. Generally, like anywhere else I have been. Like I said this was just a small portion of the country, romantically I guess I was expecting to see the wild life closer to the towns and villages and I am told that there are certain parts where that is true. Upon looking at this map you can see we were only in a pin-prick of an area.

Kruger Wild life Park

South Africa

Graciously they took us to Kruger Wild Life Park at the weekend, a four-and-a-half-hour drive from Johannesburg. I got to see some animals living in their natural habitat. Luckily for them they have had weather like ours. After years of drought they have had an abundance of rain. So, it was good for them, lots to eat and lots of places to hide, a bit harder to spot some of them though.

Africa wildlife

I loved these guys, I kept thinking of what an amazing shawl I could be knit with their colors. I guess that is one for the future.

 

London & Mum

United KingdomWe left South Africa after 5 days and headed to London. We had to change planes there on the way out and on the way back.

Long journeys. This is the main purpose of my trip, to visit my mum.

She had been in the hospital in February and I wanted to see how she was doing. Luckily, she was able to go back to the home the Saturday before we arrived. I managed to spend three visits with her.

 

MumShe was doing much better the chest infection she had been fighting was gone but she was still extremely tired.

I was happy to share photos with her, give her all the love that I had been told to give her from her friends here in the states. It made her smile remembering all the faces and the good times she had here with us all over the years.

 

 

Back Home Again

So now I am back, we flew in Sunday afternoon 12th and I am back to work again. Looking forward to seeing you in the shop again soon. Of course, I was thinking of you all the time I was away. Looking for inspiration for the shop, and patterns to make. Trying to find something new that I couldn’t find over here. I was amazed that I couldn’t find one yarn store in either places we visited. People didn’t really understand what I was looking for either, even when they saw me knitting. I was knitting too.

I was told and I did find some places on the web, in Cape Town but that is for another trip. Miles away from where I was. I did get some ideas but whether I will remember them when I have time to work on them is another matter.   Oh, one last thing I must share about the trip is, when I went into a small gift shop in the park I noticed quite a nice scarf I liked, thinking it was a local product I picked it up only to find it was Apt 9, from Kohl’s – oops.

 

 

Knitting On the Road

The yarn and needles with me on the trip – I have been wanting to make myself a nice warm sweater but hadn’t had the opportunity so I thought this a good one. It is from the Ann Norling pattern top down Raglan #60. This is the pattern I used to make myself the cardigan you can often see me wearing in the store when it is chilly. It is so easy, very basic but there is so much that you can do to make it your very own. I would be very happy to show you how to do this. Here is the sweater so far.

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You can see I have added cables under the arms at both sides, I will also add cables on the forearm of the sleeves too. The other thing about this pattern is that you can use four different weights of yarn. So, Spring, summer, fall or winter, so much fun. I get so excited at the possibilities of a pattern like this. It is certainly one of my go to patterns. I hope to be able to knit on it some more really soon. Oh I also took another skein of a very colorful yarn with me to play with, just for those times when the sweater needed more attention or took up too much room. I did play with it too, first a scarf, didn’t like the way that looked, so now a hat, a large slouchy one. Someone will want it.

 

No Just an Easter Basket-March 26@4:30-6:30pm

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OK enough of my things. Don’t forget the upcoming classes, here is a photo of the ‘Not Just for Easter Basket’, this is before the handle goes on, you can see it really isn’t just for Easter. Karen took this photo of it at the shop. Call us to sign up before time runs out.

The Beginning crochet class is full for this month. There are still two place available for beginning knitting though, on the 21st March 10.30 – 12.30. If you want to begin this month this is your chance.

We are working on classes for April so if there is something you are itching to learn give us a call and we may be able to add it to the schedule.

The featured image this week is from a wonderful blog done by a Mom with an autistic son, she knits and designs patterns, take a look at her website and her incredible bunnies: http://littlecottonrabbits.typepad.co.uk/my_weblog/2010/02/

I think that is more than enough for this week, so I will love and leave you for now, I hope I haven’t bored you silly. Have a great week and see you again soon ~ Trudy

 

 

 

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Hello March & Wine Tasting

March Is Here

Good Monday morning again. Hope this finds you well and happy.

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Welcome to March, I hope no winds, we have had enough of the March winds and April Showers already this year, I am ready for the May flowers.

 

So Thankful for 35 Years with My Best Friend & Hubby

Yesterday I celebrated 35 years with my best friend and hubby. Thirty-five years, where on earth does the time go? It seems like just yesterday when we met, actually that was just over thirty-five and a half years ago. Although we disagree on the actual first time we met. That is another story. We have certainly seen a lot of changes and travelled many, many miles during the time we have been together. I am happy to report, we are still best friends. I know how lucky can some people get?

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Time Is Like a River

Talking about years, and all that happens over time, it never ceases to amaze me how much can change in the blink of an eye or even in a day. Recently my mum was in the hospital with a nasty chest infection. I had only been skyping with her a couple of days beforehand. Then I was getting reports of how sick she was, and even messages from my brothers saying how concerned they were. Then overnight the story changed, she was over the worst and would soon be going home. Not the first time my mother had us scared.

Last week I was on Facebook and it came up with the “this time last year “pictures and there was my mum, cast on her wrist and singing ‘Que Sera Sera’ on video to my daughter. I believe that sense of whatever will be will be has rubbed off on me. Live the best way you can, make the most of every opportunity and just go for it. I think my daughter has inherited that philosophy too. Enjoy every day!

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The Luck of the Irish

Sonoma County Knitting ClassesSonoma County Yarn ShopTalking of luck, how about the luck of the Irish? Not sure why they say that, something else I will have to check out sometime.

It will soon be St Patrick’s day again, we have some great Irish themed hat patterns available, and lots of green yarn to knit them in.

 

 

Wine Tasting Anyone?

Satyre

SMALL BATCH WINES INFLUENCED BY OUR WORLD TRAVELS. CRAFTED BY FRIENDS, FOR OUR FRIENDS.

Check out their Story on   http://www.satyrewines.com/. If you like good wine you will enjoy this treat. Nicole is from down under, the land of Koalas and Kangaroos. She is a lovely lady and I am sure you will enjoy her and her wines. A good excuse to bring your significant to the store, pick up your favorite yarn and a great taste of wine at the same time. Save the date and stay tuned for more information. We may have a door prize of two.

Don’t forget to check out the classes for this month and check back often for updates.

 

Until next time then, take care and see you soon

~ Trudy

 

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Ready For Sun & New Cotton Yarn

I Need Sunshine!

Good Morning, did you think it would ever stop raining? Do You think the sun really will come out tomorrow? I am certainly over it now; you can have too much of a good thing.

I think I am growing webbed feet. I need sunshine!!!

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Yarn Hop Dates

That’s better I can feel the warmth coming through.

So, what’s new? Save the dates, Yarn hop this year July 22nd and 23rd, mark your calendars.   It looks like we probably won’t be sheering Sergeant Speckles at the shop this year as there hasn’t been much interest to date, of course that may change if I get an abundance of requests, but probably all those interested have already seen it.

 

Yarn Tasting Was Fun

Sonoma County Yarn StoreThe Yarn Tasting was a lot of fun. Crazy busy and Chad was in fine form as always. Lots of prizes and fun had by all.

We tasted 15 different yarns, some new, some old favorites. We may now have a few new favorites. For those who were unfortunate and missed the fun and games I am putting together some tasting packs and if there is something you would like to try in the meantime just let us know.

We also got to try out a nice range of Knitters Pride needles. Again if you have been thinking about new needles but are not sure what they are like, now is your chance.

People are just loving the Manos yarn, Allegria. If you haven’t already seen and touched it, you may want to do so soon before it is all gone.

As I hinted last week I have been stocking up on yarn for the summer ahead, we will have a summer. I have decided to get quite a selection of Ella Rae yarn this, year people are loving it. So many colors and textures.

 

 

Summer Yarns Are Arriving

As I hinted last week I have been stocking up on yarn for the summer ahead, we will have a summer. I have decided to get quite a selection of Ella Rae yarn this, year people are loving it. So many colors and textures.

We have 100% Egyptian cotton Phoenix solids and 100% cotton Phoenix DK in prints, great for summer wear for yourself or those young ones. Needle size for the prints is US 5 hook size F 5.5 sts to the inch. The solids call for 5- 6 needle, 5 to 5.5 sts to the inch hook size F-G. You can mix the solids and prints for that special one kind of effect. Great for warm weather clothing for the little ones and yourself.

Also, because I just couldn’t resist we have a full range of 100% cotton in Sun Kissed. These are beautiful colors, all tonal, just spectacular.

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A small sample, stunning, aren’t they? For the Sun kissed, needle size 5-7, 5.25 – 6 sts to the inch Hook Size F. Available in twelve colors.

 

More Cotton, Linens, Silks Are Here

Of course, we also have a lot more cottons, linen, silks, sugar, wool, you name it.

What is your favorite thing to knit or crochet? Is it socks, sweaters, shawls, baby clothes, or do you not have a preference it is just as the mood takes you? Did you know that there are almost as many stitches in a pair of socks as there are in some sweaters, it is just the size of the yarn and needles that differ?

 

Do I Prefer Knitting or Crochet?

I am often asked if I prefer to knit or crochet? my answer is it depends on what I am making. Likewise, I am asked what is easier? I recently found this comparison on Diffen.com.

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I am not sure I am in total agreement with all the answers. I feel that you can make the same items with both knitting and crochet. In my experience, there are only four stitches to learn in knitting, casting on, binding off, knit and purl. It is what you do with these that creates all the different stitch patterns. Well over 700 of them.

Likewise, with crochet, there is chain, slip stitch, single, half double, double, treble, and even quad, again it is what you do with these and how you combine them that make all the intricate designs. If you are interested in learning to do either let me know I will be scheduling classes in March. One thing that is common, crochet does take more yarn per project.

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Good Skills To Learn Both Crochet & Knitting

If you are in a position to learn both it really is a good idea as you can use both in the same project from time to time. In my opinion there is no wrong way to do either, as long as the result is how you want it to be, the way you get there is yours and yours alone. There is no (or at least there shouldn’t be) knitting or crochet police. If someone tells you that you are doing it wrong ignore them. My mum had a saying, didn’t like the content much but it does apply- “ there is more than one way to skin a rabbit”. Relax and enjoy whatever makes you happy.

Well, that’s all from me for another week, stay happy, stay healthy and keep those fingers busy.

Photo credit: Our featured image this week is from the Knit Picks blog.

Until next week then ~ Trudy

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New Yarn & Hugs All Around

A New Week

Good morning. I hope you are well keeping safe dry and away from difficulties.

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Happy Birthday Lesley & George

Happy Birthday George Washington, and happy birthday to Lesley, although not so many birthdays have passed for her. I know you will join me in wishing her the best of birthdays this year.

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Fresh Starts & New Beginnings

Sonoma County Knitting ClassesMonday, the beginning of another workweek. A fresh start, I like fresh starts, new beginnings. I like new beginnings too. It is like opening a new book, magazine, new item of clothing, new packet of cookies. Of course, it is great to start a new project too.

You know I was going to get to that, didn’t you? I really think I am driving myself mad though. I keep getting all this different wonderful yarn in and I want to knit with it all. I want to order it all. A couple of weeks ago, I told you we had to have a little move around to get it all in, guess what? I think I am going to have to move more. Was there something in the air back in October? I seem to have gone a little bonkers.

I think too that there wouldn’t be all the rain we have been having, must have been thinking sunshine and flowers or something because a lot of the yarn arriving now is cotton and linen. Great for our normal spring weather. There is no hurry though, spring will soon arrive followed by a lovely warm summer and fall and we will all be prepared. I am working on a green fresh start hat now.

 

Beautiful New Yarn

In the meantime, though there is still an abundance of lovely wool and alpaca to keep our fingers cozy. I just got in some truly amazing sock yarn. Merino wool with just enough of the man-made fiber to give your socks strength and your shawls drape. This yarn is from Manos

Del Uruguay, I just love saying that. It just rolls off the tongue. I also love the company and its philosophy. Manos del Uruguay is a non-profit social organization which, since 1968, has provided jobs for craftswomen living in Uruguay rural areas. They defend and promote Uruguayan identity, being part of the weave that constitutes the essence of their country, where culture and tradition are mixed in an exchange that is reflected in each one of their products.

 

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Eradicating Poverty Through Crafts

 

 

Manos Del UruguayManos Del UruguayThey are after a long evaluation process, as of 2009 a member of the World Fair Trade Organization and are 100% committed to Fair Trade. With this commitment, they continue their mission of eradicating poverty through sustainable economic growth, enabling craftspeople to improve the quality of their craft and life.

All this has happened due to a few women getting together, understanding the benefits of crafting and realizing that there were people in the rest of the world that would love to have the products they were making. “Women Power”, we can all do something great if we put our minds to it. Like little Thomas the tank engine, “I think I can, I know I can.” The craftswomen, are the owners of the company.

Each skein of yarn has a label that states where the yarn is from and which woman made it for you. You can check out more about them on line www.manos.com.uy We have a little bio of three of the women on the wall by the yarn. The yarn I chose to start with is called Alegria. This is another word I like to say it just has a nice ring to it, just for you I looked up the meaning or one of them, this is the one I will go with and that is “Mexican Spanish alegría, from Spanish, happiness, gaiety, from alegre happy” That’s how it makes me feel anyway.

There are 34 semi solid colors and 35 space dyed. I have one (at least I did) of every color. It is soooooo so soft too. How about beginning a new project in one of them.

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2017 Yarn Hop Is Coming

We are meeting today to discuss this years’ Yarn Hop, yes there will be another and it will be July. We have so much fun every year when we do this. A lot of work goes into it but it’s worth it, we try to improve it each year too, so stay tuned for the exact dates to put on your calendar.

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Sheep Shearing-Yes or No?

I have a question, Do you think we should have the sheep shearing this year?

While I am asking questions, would you like to see a class on Double Knitting? and or Brioche? How about making a skirt? These are a few of the classes I have been thinking about, or perhaps there is a class you would really like to take but you haven’t seen one offered, please let us know, remember Yarnitudes is your yarn store, and we need to know what you want to see.

 

OK I think I am done for another week, so I will love and leave you for now and I will be back next time, Happy fingers ~ Trudy

Happy Valentine’s Day To You

Love Is In the Air

Good Morning, are you fighting fit and raring to go? I must admit even though I was trying to be so careful, I did succumb to a nasty cold. What a nuisance that was. Luckily the worst was over in a couple of days though. Now back to normal again.

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Well it’s that time of the year again, love is in the air. That would be a nice change to all the bad feelings that have been going around lately. Again, I feel very lucky that here in the shop most of the time it is love and happiness. Leave your worries at the door and just come in and have fun. I hope you are surrounded by love this week.

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I have a couple of things to tell you about this week. The Yarn tasting on Wednesday is sold out, you could call to get on a waitlist if you want to, just in case someone should drop out. If it continues to be popular, we can schedule one at another date.  Because of the tasting however there will be NO Wednesday social knitting. This is just for the Tasting; all will be back to normal next week. I will be sure to tell you how it all went too.

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Knitterati Updates

Have you joined in the Cascade Knitterati knit along yet? Apparently, it became so popular so quickly it took Cascade a bit by surprise. They ran out of some of the original colors. When they started, their shelves were stocked with the original five colors but suddenly they were empty.

They did come up with several different color choices all of them are really nice. I do have it on good authority though that the missing colors should be back in stock by the end of the month, as soon as they get theirs we will get ours. I have heard very positive comments on the squares so far, people say they are having lots of fun and learning new techniques too. It is never too late to join and if you need help we will be here for you.

 

I’m Still Planning the Year Ahead

Sonoma County Knitting ClasseesYou may or you may not know Lee Gant, she has been to the store before talking about her first book. Well she has now finished a wonderful pattern book for girls and young juniors. This book has been a labor of love for Lee and is due to be released in September. Something to look forward to. Here is a photo of the book along with a message from Lee. She has kindly agreed to do a trunk show as soon as the book is released.

 

 

Lee Gant

Knitting is Finding a New Generation

From Lee Gant, “Knitting is finding a new generation of enthusiasts. More and more kids of all ages are interested in knitting and creating their own special clothing and accessories.

Finally! A collection of knits for girls and teenagers that suits their relaxed, comfortable, style! From high-textured cabled ponchos and sweaters to stockinette tops and dresses to warm, comfy coats, these pieces all share a carefree style your girls will love.

Sized from 6 to young juniors 12, the patterns reach an often-missed generation of girls between toddler and adult. Yes, this age group can be tricky to please, so get them involved! Let them choose the pattern, the yarn, the fit (body-skimming or looser), and especially the color(s). Encourage them to personalize their design with the choices they make. Once exposed to the joy of creating a unique piece of hand-made clothing, they may even want to learn to knit for themselves!”

Keep your eyes peeled for information, as soon as I have a date, you will be the first to know.

St. Patrick’s Day is Coming

Sebastopol Yarn ShopWell next month brings St. Patrick’s Day, do you have something green to wear, if not we have plenty of green in the store to make yourself a little, or not so little project. Then following close behind, Easter, the time of year when we can all wear our pretty Easter colors, isn’t it funny how we associate different colors with different occasions. I am sure there is a story about that somewhere I need to be checking.

 

Still Time To Sign Up For Classes

Treat yourself to a class at Yarnitudes this winter, it’s fun and it gets you not thinking about all the rain and dreary weather.

Linda’s – Four seasons

Deirdre’s – Two at a time socks

Karen’s – Wool Felted Geode, I had some terrific ideas for this one.

My – Begin knitting class, you could make a St. Paddy’s day hat.

Lesley’s – Finishing classes

Karen’s – Felted Ballet slippers

Another Pandemonium hat from me

And just in time a not just for Easter basket from Karen

 

This Weeks’ Knitting Tip

Knitting HintsNow a knitting tip from Tamara. If you have ever had a large sequence cast on with circular needles, a cast on over 150 stitches and/or with a DK or lighter yarn, you know it can be a challenge when joining not to create a mobios. Our tip for you this week is how not to have that happen and to eliminate one stressor to fine knitting in the round. Dig out your clothes pins, yes clothes pins( pegs, Tamara, pegs), once you join the round make sure that all stitches are hanging uniformly down in the round and attach a clothes pin every few inches to keep your knitting in the round from becoming the dreaded mobios. I usually keep my clothes pins on for at least 5-6 rows to ensure that the weight of the piece is now keeping the knitting in it’s proper place. A funny solution, but if it keeps you from ripping out after knitting 2-3 rows on a cast on of over 250 stitches, you will love the hint of using clothes pins for the time it saves.

 

One More Free Valentine’s Pattern

Sonoma County Knitting ClassesWinter and rain gets you thinking of warm mugs of tea, coffee and hot chocolate. e are sharing a pattern this week for a cute mug warmer with a Valentine’s day twist: http://yarns-and-tales.blogspot.com/2013/01/country-cables-mug-cozy-pattern.html

 

Well I have given you plenty to think about again, so I will finish for this week, and wish you again a very Happy Valentine’s Day. See you next week ~ Trudy

 

Hand knits Sebastopol

Looking Forward To Spring

February Is Already Here

Good Morning, how are you this week?

February here already, time certainly marches on. We all know that February is the second month in the year, and has the shortest amount of days, but did you realize it Is the last month of Winter? You probably did, just me suddenly thinking about that. So much to look forward to, it won’t be long before spring is in the air. With all the rain, we have had the hills should be bright with greens, and the flowers should be in abundance.

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New Yarn & Wonderful Colors

Until then though we can still stave of the chills of winter with some wonderful new yarn and a fantastic array of colors. If you had fun making all the pink hats, perhaps now you could knit some green ones, for new beginnings and fresh starts, how about it. By the way we have restocked with the pink. By the end of the week we should be fully stocked for a while.

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When I saw the dog with the heart cowl, it gave me another idea. We could do some double knitting, with the hearts or leaves if you would rather, cowls or headbands, do you know anyone interested. I saw a young girl in Peet’s the other day and she had on a Double-Knit headband it was white with blue a blue design, we could start a whole new trend.   Did you know the Pantone color of the year this year is a fresh spring green?

Sonoma county Knitting Classes

Knitterati

Have you been following the Knitterati Anniversary from Cascade? We are at two squares now. The first one was knit in the round from the center out, it’s fun, new techniques, the second, is color work, great picture of the squirrels and leaves. We did get some longer Double pointed needles in, of course you can still use magic loop but if you fancy trying something different, knitting on longer DPNs might be the way to go. It is more fun than it looks, really. It is of course fun too, to see the different colors people are putting together. If you would like to join but can’t face sewing them together at the end, come on in and I will show you how to attach them as you go.

Sonoma County Knitting ClassesSonoma County Knitting Classes

 

2017 Yarn Tasting Event

We have had quite a lot of interest in the Yarn tasting coming up on the 15th February, but we still have a few tickets left, I think they may be gone by the end of week though. If we do sell out we can put you on a waitlist, you know how things go, someone may have to drop out.

We are excited about the tasting as we will be able to try yarn that we have previously not had in the store. Tickets are only $7 and the event is February 15 from 4:30-7pm and seating is limited to 15 people.

 

Beautiful New Yarn

Sonoma County yarn ShopSonoma County Yarn ShopSo much new yarn. I actually just finished a scarf with one new yarn. It’s called Melilla. It comprises of 45% silk, 35% merino wool and 20% nylon. It reminds me of Noro, but a very reasonable price. Also the colors are very pretty and they don’t have the wacky weird color thrown in that a lot of people took the time to actually cut out. It also doesn’t have the plant matter thrown in. The scarf I just finished was one skein, one row pattern, great simple project but it looks so nice. I am now making a hat with a ‘sister’ yarn if you will, called Tangier. This is 50% silk, 17% rayon, 17 % Acrylic and 16% cotton. Same great texture and weight which is a medium worsted, knitted on a size 8 needle. So it works up quickly. Come and check them out. It feels nice in your hand too.

 

Cascade certainly does produce some really great yarn and they keep the prices very reasonable too.

 

Knitting Tip of the Week

When buying a new pattern, and starting a new project, it is wise to first read the stitch pattern. Not the whole pattern. Of course, you need to know if it is something you can do, so you will need to check out the abbreviations, but these days they also list the pattern stitch. While I must admit, I don’t always do a gauge swatch, it really is a good idea to try the stitch pattern out on a small number of stitches to make sure you “get it” before starting in on the whole piece. This will prevent many hours of frustration as you move along on the multitude of stitches possibly needed for the garment. You will see how each stitch takes its place and it will help you to immediately notice any error you may make. It will also show you if a lifeline may be needed and if it is where it may need to be.

 

Knitting Is Awesome

You still have time to make something special for your Valentine, let me know if I can help. Along those lines we would like to share some knitting patterns for those who are young at heart or have a someone that they would like some sexy knits for: http://knittingisawesome.com/category/knitting-fashion/ Knitting Is Awesome specializes in patterns that has young fashion appeal or for you if you enjoy fun fashions. These aren’t our usual free patterns, but a fun collection of knitting patterns to turn out some fun knit clothing.

Until next week then, stay happy, stay healthy and I will be back soon ~ Trudy

Knitting When Your Are Short Of Time

Colds & Rain, Oh My

Hello, good morning, me again. How are you? There have been so many people not feeling well over the past few weeks. That time of year I guess, lots of coughs, colds etc. lots of surgeries too. I hope you have managed to stay healthy. We do have hand sanitizer and disinfecting wipes at the counter should you need them.

Sonoma County Yarn Shop

Power Outages & Technical Difficulties

First of all, I want to apologize for last week’s hiccup. With all the power outages, storms etc. things got a little mixed up and we sent out the prior week’s email by mistake. I hope you got the right one and found some interesting things in it. I don’t know about you but I am ready for some of our wonderful sunshine. I know we needed the rain but, a little time for it to soak in would be good. I feel so bad for all those underwater, without power etc. I am so lucky. I hope you are too.

Sebastopol Yarn Shop

Technology Is Great When It Works

I love technology when it works but when things like power cuts etc. happen, well let’s say I am not too happy. What do we do now? How did we ever survive before computers and cell phones? Recently our internet and phones went down. We had to resort back to cash and checks, I like most people don’t carry much of either any more. Luckily we have great customers who are patient and understanding and we managed to get through. Thank you if you were one of those affected by this. How did we all become so busy, what happened to quieter times?

Sebastopol Knitting Classes

Knitting for When Time Is Scarce

I read recently on a pattern site, how busy we all are, and about how by the time we have completed all our ‘have to be done ‘chores we can find ourselves with less than an hour to knit.

What can we accomplish in an hour? If you keep good notes, where exactly you are in a pattern etc., you will be surprised how much you can do. It may not seem like much at the time but that hour can be so refreshing. Over time those one or two rows you will see turn into a completed project. One stitch at a time one row at a time. Just make sure if you are too tired though, not to work on anything complicated, this will ultimately end in tinking or frogging. Many a day after I have stayed up to do just one more row, I find myself looking at my work the next day and asking myself “what were you thinking?”

For those days, nights, minutes or whatever, have something easy on hand. Something that you could do in your sleep. You will get the enjoyment of knitting without the frustration of a challenging project. Save those complicated projects for when you have time on your side. I always have some of each on the go. Some for when I am being driven somewhere, (I was going to say driving but didn’t want you to think I was actually knitting whilst I drive, not quite that crazy) Projects for the doctor’s office, etc.etc. If you would like ideas of simple on the go, or things you really don’t have to think about we can help you find just the thing.

Sonoma County Knitting Classes

 

Additional Knitting Class Requests

Sonoma County Knitting ClassesI have had several requests for additional classes on Beginning Knitting and the Pandemonium Hat. So, I have scheduled another beginning knitting class on the 1st of February at 11 am and the Pandemonium hat on February 24th also at 11 am. If you would like to join in, please contact the shop buy your supplies and be ready to go. Both of the Heart Hats are now in the shop if you want to see them for the class scheduled on February 3rd at 11am.

 

Speaking of the hats with designs on them, I have had one person ask for a private lesson on how to make your own designs. I will be teaching this as a private lesson but if you think you might be interested in a class on this, let me know. If we do have this class we won’t actually be knitting. it will be one hour on the actual design process. Having some experience on knitting a hat with a design is greatly encouraged beforehand.

 

CASCADE YARNS® – Knitterati Afghan

Sonoma County Cascade YarnIn celebration of their 30th Anniversary, they partnered with Vogue Knitting to bring you the Knitterati Afghan Knit-along. Make sure you have downloaded the first square!

 

 

The next one will be released on Thursday, January 26th! There will be 30 squares in all – created by 30 different designers. To participate, sign up for their newsletter and visit your us to purchase 220 Superwash® for the afghan. There are 5 different colors of 220 Superwash® that will be used for the afghan (and approximate quantities):

  • 1944 – Westpoint Blue Heather (4 balls) 1
  • 910 – Summer Sky Heather (6 balls)
  • 1946 – Silver Grey (5 balls)
  • 0905 – Celery (5 balls)
  • 1949 – Lavender (3 balls)

Cascade Yarn Sebastopol

To finish off this week’s newsletter, some FREE Valentine’s Day knitting patterns, one of our favorites is the heart and kisses sweater: http://intheloopknitting.com/valentines-day-free-knitting-patterns/

Our featured photo credit this week is from Patty Mack Knits, Harry Potter Knits for Dogs: http://pattymacknits.com/happy-valentines-day/

Best to you this week~Trudy

 

 

Sonoma County Yarn Shop

Reorganizing Store & Lots of New Yarn

Wet Rainy Days Make for Great Knitting

Good Morning,

How are you today? Another wet week behind us, I hope you made it through OK.

Sonoma County Yarn Store

Well I didn’t have to think too hard about this week’s newsletter. So much to tell you about this week. Apart from all the full shelves, lack of pink yarn, and a newly published pattern on Ravelry that is.

Sonoma County Yarn Store

We Are Short On Pink Yarn

The lack of Pink yarn, as you may or may not know, there have been marches all over the country this past weekend. So many pink hats made we ran out of pink in many yarn lines. We also had to do a little reorganizing in certain parts of the store to accommodate some of our newer lines. I think you will enjoy the full shelves and the amazing colors and textures we have for you.

 

Beautiful Heart Hats

Sonoma County Knitting ClassesSebastopol Knitting ClassesTo start off, we have something exciting coming next month, apart from Valentine’s day that is. Perhaps I should just start with Valentine’s day. I have finished and knitted up two Heart hats, one is the same as last years, which got sold at Christmas, and one with small hearts.

I will be teaching a class on this at the beginning of the month so you can have yours finished in time for the 14th. They are simple hats that use just two colors, one for the main color and one for the hearts. A great hat to knit for an introduction to color work. It is great to play with color. Last year I made it in white with red hearts, this year I have it in white with pink hearts, although the color choices are endless, and it doesn’t just have to be for Valentines, any time you want to show your love for someone special will do.

 

Yarn Tasting is Coming Again

Then February we have an exciting “Yarn Tasting – February 15 from 4pm-7pm”.  This will be brought to us by Chad from Cascade yarns. Maybe you have met Chad in the past, he is a nice guy. He will be bringing with him a variety of their yarn, new and old favorites. So, If you have ever wondered how the yarn knits up, how it feels in your hand, how easy it is to work with etc. etc. This is your chance. This time will be a little different.

We have a limited amount of space-only 15 people can attend, so to make it fair, we have decided to sell tickets, that way we won’t have to disappoint some people who would love to attend only to find on the day, people just didn’t show up. The tickets are only $7, not expensive and the cost can be applied to any cascade purchase. What a deal! There will also be door prizes and a few snacks I am sure. Time to have fun with yarn. You will also be able to buy full bags of yarn that we don’t normally carry and perhaps encourage us to carry a few new lines.

Sonoma County Yarn Shop

 

New Pattern on Ravelry

Sebastopol Knitting ClassesI have just published another pattern on Ravelry, this is my 5th that is available on there. I am noticing a theme in the color combinations, I think I should change that next time.

I have some other patterns in the works, I just need to get them printed edited and on line. If you have been in the shop recently you will have seen the original Badlands shawl and three of the other designs, I no longer have the Fish tail scarf on display in the shop though, however I do have the test knit of the Badlands in a lovely silver rayon that was knitted by Peggy to test the pattern out.

Just to make sure everyone can understand what I have written and that there were no errors. As always just by changing the yarn type will change the total overall look.

 

Class Updates

Also, we have been working on more classes and have some great ones coming up. I have been a bit stretched for time though so getting all the info together and on the website, is taking longer than I had hoped. However, this is what we have in store for you. As always details available in the store and will soon be online too. Thanks for your patience.

 

State of Classes at Present:

  • The Crochet stitch of the month is still on. Still room to join as some people can’t make it every month there is usually space, however please call ahead to let us know you are coming.
  • Although it was a requested that I teach the Baa Ble hat again, it is cancelled, I guess everyone who wanted to do the sheep hat has.
  • Crochet Sheep Booties Class full.
  • Pandamonium hat class Full
  • Finishing techniques is postponed due to lack of interest as of now
  • Knit fixes, although this is a much-requested class, as yet there are no sign ups
  • The Half Pi starts next month
  • Felted Clogs
  • Felted Soaps
  • Four Seasons Throw is questionable as no one has signed up, if no one does for February we will cancel this

Also coming soon, wet felted scarf with silk hankies, felted geode, Spinning A-Z, knitted and felted ballet slippers, and an adorable felted basket, just in time for Easter, although depending on the colors you choose would be a great addition any time of year.

Well with so much going on, I need to stop now and get working on it all. So, for now stay dry, warm and healthy and I will be back next week with more.

If you love the crow knitting, these are original postcards done in multimedia and available here: http://www.kaspareks.biz/postcards.htm

Happy Yarning ~ Trudy

Sierras 2017

Stormy January & New Classes

Sonoma County Yarn Shop

Good Morning, is it Monday again? Wow. I hope you survived the storms of last week, with no damage and no injury. What a wet start to 2017. Do you think we are out of the drought yet?

We have been extremely fortunate, so far, touch wood, fingers crossed and all of that. No flooding and lots of yarn to keep us busy and hand knits to keep us warm.

 

New Yarn You’ll Love

Sebastopol Yarn ShopSo, what have I been up to since I last wrote? Well a funny thing happened.

Towards the end of last year, I had visits from sales people showing me new yarns for this year. I really didn’t want to think that far out as things change so quickly, but! Yes, you guessed it. I put in an order and although it was at the back of my mind, guess what? It all turned up yesterday. Wow! So, where to put it all? With a little rearranging, it will fit nicely.

You should see it all. The colors and textures are amazing. Five boxes, things I know you are going to love. I just want to dive right in and make things with it all. That takes time though. We also have another shipment arriving next Tuesday, this one I do remember and I have already knit up a sample with this. Childs short sleeve cardigan bolero. So cute, come and check it out, only one skein too. Now I need to put my thinking cap on and start at least planning what I can make with it all when I get a chance. Do you ever have so many ideas it is hard to keep up with them? My brain is on overload at the moment with ideas etc. I would like to hit the pause button so I can catch up.

Sonoma County Knitting Classes

Great Knitting Questions & Solutions

Sonoma County Yarn ShopWhen I was thinking what to write about this week, I was asked a question? How do you bind off in the middle and end of the row? Well, the beginning is easy. You do this the same way you would do it at the beginning. Just make sure you get to the place the first stitch knit as many as you need to before starting the bind off. Say the row says, bind off 10sts, knit 20 sts bind off 20 sts, knit 20sts bind off 10 stitches.

The row will be 80 stitches across. You would bind off the first 10 sts having actually knitted 11 as you will need to have one stitch left on the needle, so now you will knit 19 to make the 20. Thirty stitches worked at this point.  Are you with me so far?

Now you are ready to bind off the center 20. I suggest you put a marker after the 21st stitch. Then knit 2 pass first stitch over until you are at the marker. You should now have 29 sts left. Knit 19sts. Now comes the interesting part. Yes, you could knit to the end and turn binding off 10 sts at the beginning of the next row, and it would work out reasonably well. But if you are doing stripes this might not look quite so good. Or you could bind off and rejoin the yarn to the live stitches. However, if you don’t want to do this, it is possible to bind off the last 10 stitches and have the working yarn at the beginning of the next row of live stitches.

 

Binding Off at Ends on Same Row

This is quite hard to write out, but I hope you are understanding my explanation. By holding some slack from the working yarn and knitting to the end of the row somewhat loosely and catching the slack yarn into place this can be accomplished. If you would like me to show you I would be happy to, you know where and when. Otherwise here is a link to a video that will show you how https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1SJGtsbI5wQ   I hope I haven’t thoroughly confused you. It is always much easier for me to show you, than to explain it in writing. This is why I am a knitter rather than an author.

If you have a question you would like answered let me know. If you have the question you can bet someone, at least one other person does too. Now on to classes……

 

Sonoma County Knitting Classes

Felted Clogs Class

I really hadn’t thought much about knitting and felting slippers until I bought a yarn store and opened as Yarnitudes almost 6 years ago now. It was actually my mum that made me realize what I was missing out on. I bought Village knitters lock stock and barrel as they say back in the UK. This meant some old samples too. My mum was visiting and sitting in the shop her feet were cold. So, I found a pair of knitted clogs and she put them on. She told me how warm and soft they were.

Then when Lesley joined me and was talking about making them I really got interested. She made a pair for my mum and then a pair for me for the shop, for when my feet get cold. I was immediately taken by the softness of the sole and how I could felt them to fit. The only small parts of my body are my wrists ankles and feet. Not always easy to get slippers to fit. Since then Lesley has taught many clog classes and it is always very popular. If you can knit, purl and recognize your stitches this is a class that you will have a lot of fun with.

 

Pandamonium

Sonoma County Knitting Classes

Have you always wanted to do color work but not into sheep, although I find it hard to believe any yarnie who doesn’t appreciate their contribution. How about Pandas? Four colors of yarn, you get to choose the colors of course, find someone who likes the same colors and share yarn or get some smaller skeins and make a couple. Learn how to draw pictures with your yarn, and how to personalize your own project. Be sure to pick up your supplies and do your homework before class so that you get the most our of your class time.

 

Half Pi Shawl

Sebastopol Knitting Classes

In this class Linda will teach you how to make your very own Half Pi. You will get compliments every time you wear it. It is easier than you think. You will learn how to make the classic shawl shape, several lace designs and applied lace edging. This class will open a whole new world to you. See how so few stitches can be turned into beautiful patterns. Although this can be made with lace weight yarn, I would recommend fingering or sock to the first-time lace knitter. The pattern is included and we have the needles and lots of yarn to choose from. Another technique you can add to your collection.

Many new classes to come. If you can’t yet knit or crochet, or if it’s just not for you? We have classes where you will have to know neither, just a love for color and fiber is all these classes will take.

For those of you that read our newsletter all the way through, your link to some wonderful winter knitting patterns, from mittens to sweaters, from throws to cowls, have fun knitting. We have lots of yarn that would look wonderful knit up in many of these patterns: http://www.stitchandunwind.com/winter-preview-61-free-knitting-patterns-for-the-season/

See you next week. Take care and enjoy every moment-Trudy