Friday, September 24, 2010

New Book! Brave New Knits

Brave new Knits is a compilation of patterns from different designers who are all knit bloggers.  The contents are mixed, part familiar names and part new fare. Among the freshmen are notable works by Melissa Wehrle (aka. Neoknits), Teresa Gregorio (aka. Canary Sanctuary), and Ruth P. (aka. Wooly Wormhead). Familiar faces include Jared Flood (aka. Brooklyn Tweed), Norah Gaughan, Wendy Bernard (aka. Knit and Tonic), Ysolda Teague, Kristi Porter, Joam McGowan-Michael, Kat Coyle, Shannon Okey, Kathy Veeza (aka. Grumperina), Jordana Paige, and Stefanie Japel. 

And very cleverly, they've set up a Facebook Page for the book! And of course, since it's a blogger's book, the author, Julie Turjoman, has been blogging it too! She has also graciously uploaded all of the projects in the book to Ravelry, so you can get a good gander. 


NEW! Piecework Sept/Oct 2010 knitting issue

Like a little bit of ye-olde traditional knitting? Piecework is kickin' it old skool this month with their knitting issue!  The lead article, "What would Miss Marple Knit?" is accompanied by a very vintage shawl pattern (on the cover). Additionally, there are lace edgings, a pair of gloves form a historical costume drama (Dancing at Lughnasa), a lovely scarf adapted form a vintage Russian pattern, and a lot of articles relating to how knitting has historically fit into women's lives (Rose Wilder Lane, Jane Austen, Emily Dickinson, children's literature, etc). Some very interesting stuff!

NEW Magazine! Interweave Knits Weekend 2010

The new Interweave Knits Weekend Special Issue has just arrived! It's very reasonably priced this year, and is full of great projects and garments. 

Included in this issue is the Staff Projects (knitted bags of all types), which you can download free!

Chesapeake Pullover (I know, they made it in a stupid colour, but I dare any man to try and not love this sweater in a dark, heathered colour)

Chanticleer Cardigan (another silly colour for the season, but a great sweater to wear all fall, winter, and early-spring)

Marine Pullover (more dumb colours, but absolutely adorable on baby!)

Yarn Swap Reminder! Sunday Sept 26th

Just a reminder that our monthly yarn swap takes place this Sunday, September 26th!

1378 Bathurst St, Toronto ON 

Sunday Sept 26, 1pm to 4pm

Get rid of your old yarn (we donate leftovers to charity), and take anything from the donations.

If you can't make it but still want to donate feel free to drop off your donations any time that is convenient, we'll make sure they make their way into the swap baskets. 

See you on Sunday!

See Event on Facebook

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

New Book! More Last Minute Knitted Gifts!

More Last Minute Knitted Gifts by Joelle Hoverson ~ $35.95

Another  "FINALLY!" this week, More last Minute Knitted Gifts has finally materialized! It's predecessor, Last Minute Knitted Gifts, is one of my favorite knitting pattern books or all time. Actually, it was a lot of people's favorites, when it was first published in the fall of 2004 it went through 3 or 4 subsequent printings to meet consumer demand.  You'll have to decide how it rates compared to it's big sister (big shoes to fill), but regardless, it again serves up a big, varied pile of beautiful and satisfying small projects. The patterns include a beret, hand-warmers, hats, baby bonnet, scarves,baby socks, baskets, holiday ornaments, mitts, baby cardies, a child's pullover, a man's vest, a ladies cardie, 3 baby blankets, socks, a kids's vest, and sundry itsy-bitsy projects like sachets, book marks and wrist-bands. And of course the pointy hat on the cover. Overall, a wonderful showing, and just in time for holiday knitting!

NEW Book - Modern Top-Down Knitting

Modern Top-Down Knitting  by Kristina McGowan ~ $35.95

Like the convenience of knitting top-down, but don't like the frumpy old patterns available? You are really going to like this book! The contents is in the subtitle: Sweaters, Dresses, Skirts & Accesories Inspired by the Techniques of Barbara G. Walker. Yes, walker is the lady who wrote 4 tomes of lace charts, but she is also the mistress of top-down knitting (see Knitting from the Top).  The book offers a pile of sweaters (blessedly with set-in slevees), hats, some skirts, some jackets, several dresses, some tunics, some tanks, a wrap, a cowl, gauntlets, and slippers.  The pieces are fashion forward but also classic (McGowan is a garment designer in NYC).

The instructions on how to make short-row set in sleeves is summary, so if you are interested in the formula for that I'd refer you to Custom Knits by Wendy Bernard, where's it's all laid out in detail. Otherwise, Niiiiice!

Addenda Nov 18, 2010
Ad Maude suggests, Barbara Walker's Knitting from the Top is an excellent resource!

As always, you can find us at

NEW Book! Knit & Purl Pets

Knit & Purl Pets by Claire Garland $25.99
Please be prepared to be adorabled. This book is full of the cutest, and yet most interesting toy patterns because they actually look both like animals and knitting. The patterns/creatures include: 

  • little birds (in my opinion, you can't go wrong with a book that opens with little birds)
  • garter snakes (who hopefully will elave the little birds alone!)
  • hilarious chickens accompanied by eggs
  • guinea pigs (both long and short haired varieties)
  • floppy eared rabbits
  • kittens with their own toy mouse
  • tortoise
  • a labrador puppy
  • rats (not the gross kind in the subway, more like the kind used in psychology experiments or as pets)
  • tabby cat with it's own basket
  • stegosaurus
  • ponies (yup, your little ponies!)
  • chameleon
  • greyhound with it's own sweater/jacket
Yup, pretty cute. And the best thing - no vet bills!  

NEW - Alice Starmore's Aran Knitting

Aran Knitting: New and Expanded Edition
Aran Knitting by Alice Starmore (new, expanded edition) ~ $39.95

FINALLY! Alice Starmore's classic tome, Aran Knitting, is back in print!  This book was going for hundreds of dollars on Ebay, and now you can have it in softcover for a very reasonable price (hey, 40 bucks is always better than 400). The samples have been updated and re-photographed, but it's still all in there: sweater patterns (generally using Starmore's own brand of yarn which is easy to substitute), extensive history of cable knitting, cable patterns (instructions are both written and charted), and sage Starmore advice. The patterns are all classics, include men's sweaters, children's sweaters, some hats, a couple of wraps, and several women's sweaters. The illustrated instructions are clear and easy to follow - as they should be. There's nothing not to like here! 

Oh, and as an interesting added bonus, the book is a "Green Edition, Planet Friendly Publishing" - made in the USA, printed on recycled paper. By using just 10% post-consumer waste (it's recycled paper, not what it sounds like) in the publication of this book (I assume the whole imprint and not just this one book in front of me) the following was saved: 52 trees, 4,938 pounds of air emissions, 23,784 gallons water, 1,444 pounds solid waste (again, not what it sounds like). 

Thursday, September 16, 2010

NEW Araucania Coliumo Mutli

Araucania Coliumo is another great newbie!  It is a super soft, chunky/bulky strand of 70% soft wool and 30% silk and knits on a very reasonable 8mm needle. It is 100g/87m of snuggly-wuggly  lurvliness!  One skein makes a very big hat or pair of mitts, and 2 skeins are enough for a scarf. Take 4 skeins for a shawl/wrap and you are set!

This is our sample hat in Araucania Coliumo in colour 4 (bottom right above).

Some clever FREE patterns for Araucania Coliumo:

NEW Malabrigo Rasta

Arco Iris 866

Abril 853

archangel 850

Rasta is a verrrry happy new yarn!  It is thick, soft, and pretty merino yarn that knits up on an 8mm to 12mm needle. 1 skein is plenty for a hat or pair of drop-dead gorgeous mitts, and two make a stunning scarf.  150g/82m of happiness that will change your life. 

Wednesday, September 08, 2010

SALE Sublime Organic Merino Wool DK

Sumblime Organic Merino Wool is super soft and super sale! It has good yardage at 50g/105m, it's a single ply and has a soft, airy texture.  It's perfect for anyone who's afraid of what's getting into baby's mouth, for people who are concerned about the environment, and people who like nice yarns! We have 11 very pretty, subtle colours, ready for your enjoyment.  

Free Project Suggestions for Babies:
Free Projects for Kids

Free Projects for Adults

Friday, September 03, 2010

NEW YARN: Cascade Eco Duo!

Cascade Eco Duo is a new petting yarn that just arrived and it's going to make you sweat, then drool, then fantasize, then obsess, and then finally cave and snuggle.  It is seriously, emphatically soft. nomysteryleft on Ravelry says "It’s like Malabrigo on steroids… super SOFT steroids!!!" Caveat emptor.  

So here are the stats: it is 70% undyed baby alpaca and 30% undyed merino wool, made in Peru. Skeins are 100g and offer up 180m of ecstatic, bacchanalian pleasure. The ball band suggests knitting on 6mm needles, 18 sts = 4".  It comes in 8 natural colour varieties, ranging from blends of natural, beige, brown, grey, and black. You'll probably be seeing lots of the colours this fall, as Camel is making a comeback

Here are some of my favorite project made with Cascade Eco Duo on Ravelry (see it in action!):

And here are some projects I think it would look great in!
This is the Slouchy Hat/Beret we made with 1 skein of Cascade Eco Duo. The pattern is FREE, just follow our link! 

Thursday, September 02, 2010

Berroco Booklet 298: Tweed!

Check out this great scarf pattern called Payson in the new Berroco Booklet 298!  It is made with 3 balls of Berroco Blackstone Tweed.  

Baudelaire in Blackstone Tweed

Dickens in Blackstone Tweed Chunky

NEW! Berroco Blackstone Tweed & Blackstone Tweed Chunky!

Berroco Blackstone Tweed & Blackstone Tweed Chunky $11.50

Please welcome Berroco Blackstone Tweed & Blackstone Tweed Chunky to the store!  Both are a very happy,  lovely, and soft  blend of wool, kid mohair and angora - aka. great for making EVERYTHING!  Blackstone Tweed is a worsted/aran weight an knits on a suggested 4.5mm needle, and has some really great yardage, weighing in at a whopping 119m for it's 50g! Blackstone Tweed Chunky works up on a 6.5mm needle for quick knits and is a very nice 50g/55m.  And there's more good news! We have Berroco's new pattern booklet for the Blackstone Tweeds and it's Beautiful!

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