Thursday, December 27, 2012

Check out this Knitalong!

Iris Schreier, the mastermind behind the beautiful Artyarns and many gorgeous patterns, is offering a neat knitalong, 200 Yards Scarf Knitalong. (Picture is from her pattern page on It is a little different format. The pattern seems to be free as long as you use an Artyarns yarn (of which we carry a few).

So, follow the steps below and knitalong! (I am really excited because I have been wanting to do something fun with these yarns and this scarf/shawlette is just the thing!)

Step 1:
Pick a color of Artyarn yarn. (200 yds single strand or 400 for double strand of light)
Step 2:
Select “Cast On” button on Ravelry pattern page for “200 Yard Scarf Knitalong.”
Step 3:
Add a photo of your selected yarn to your project page before Feb. 28 to receive the pattern. Distribution of the pattern begins on Jan. 1 and ends on Feb. 28.

It occurred to me that you could also use this lovely cotton yarn by Artyarns.

Happy Needling,

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Merry Knitmas!

Merry Christmas to all! I hope that this holiday season brought you joy and love and many successful homemade projects. I finished everything at about 11:59 pm last night and snuggled in for a good night's sleep.

(sourced from this site)

Happy Needling,

Monday, December 24, 2012

Countdown to Knitmas - Day 24!

Happy Christmas Eve everyone! Today I have a quick tip for you to make your Long-tail cast on a little easier.

There's nothing worse than starting your long tail cast-on, and running out of yarn with just a few stitches left (especially if you've cast on a LOT of stitches, ask me how I know!). Here's a quick and dirty way to estimate how long of a tail to leave.

In this example, I need to cast on 20 stitches. All you need to do is wrap the yarn around your needle the number stitches to cast on:

So here I wrapped my yarn 20 times around my needle. If you have to cast on, say, 100 stitches, just wrap the yarn 10 times around the needle, and measure out the amount of yarn it took, then leave that long of a tail x10, make sense?

Then unwrap the yarn from your needle, give yourself another few inches just to be safe, make your slip knot, and you're good to go!

Hope this helps! Happy knitting,
<3: Kaity

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Countdown to Knitmas - Day 23!

Tomorrow, Christmas Eve, is the my traditional time to wrap presents. It began with my parents wrapping frantically on the Christmas eves of my childhood, carefully conserving the last roll of tape.

To enhance the wrapping of your beautiful knitted and crocheted gifts, you could use these gift tags as the finishing touch. When you have spent so much time making something special, you should also take an extra second to make its outside extra special, too.

Happy Needling,

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Countdown to Knitmas - Day 22!

There's only 2 shopping days left at Anacapa! We'll be open today and tomorrow (Sunday) and closed Christmas eve and Christmas day.

Looking for a gift for the crochet enthusiast in your life? Check out this neat set from Addi!

 This is a set of crochet hooks that attach to their addi click cables:
The kit comes with sizes 3.5(US E), 3.75(US F), 4.0(US 6), 4.5(US 7), 5.0(US H), 6.0(US J), 8.0(US L), and 9.0(US M). This would be great for tunisian crochet, or would make a good companion set for the Interchangeable knitting needle sets.

You can pick up stitches super easily, bind-off stitches quickly, or even knit with a crochet hook on one end and a needle on the other!

Happy knitting (and crocheting!),
<3: Kaity

Friday, December 21, 2012

Countdown to Knitmas - Day 21!

Happy Solstice! Winter has truly begun!

I pinned this link some time ago, looking forward to sharing it here at the countdown. This article contains 7 ways to join your yarn and they are all great to know about!

Happy Needling,

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Countdown to Knitmas: Day 20!

Today, you get some quotes about knitting, which I always find fun to read! Do you have any favorites that I missed, I love to hear them! Post them as a comment!

“Properly practiced, knitting soothes the troubled spirit, and it doesn't hurt the untroubled spirit either.”
― Elizabeth Zimmerman

“Letting go is the lesson. Letting go is always the lesson. Have you ever noticed how much of our agony is all tied up with craving and loss?”
Susan Gordon Lydon, The Knitting Sutra: Craft as a Spiritual Practice 

“I will continue to freak out my children by knitting in public. It's good for them.”
Stephanie Pearl-McPhee, At Knit's End: Meditations for Women Who Knit Too Much 

 “And in the act of making things, just by living their daily lives, they also make history. Knitting is clothing made in spare moments, or round the fire, whenever women gathered together... It's something to celebrate-clothes made in love and service, something women have always done.”
Anne Bartlett, Knitting

“Sometimes, people come up to me when I am knitting and they say things like, "Oh, I wish I could knit, but I'm just not the kind of person who can sit and waste time like that." How can knitting be wasting time? First, I never just knit; I knit and think, knit and listen, knit and watch. Second, you aren't wasting time if you get a useful or beautiful object at the end of it. I will remember that not everyone understands. I will resist the urge to ask others what they do when they watch TV.
Stephanie Pearl-McPhee, At Knit's End: Meditations for Women Who Knit Too Much
“When you knit, if you get something wrong and keep knitting, then when you discover it, you have to rip out all those rows of stitching to go back and fix it, Life is like that. Sometimes, it has to rip out all the stitches to go back and fix what's wrong.”
Lani Diane Rich, The Fortune Quilt  

Happy Knitting!
<3: Kaity

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Countdown to Knitmas - Day 19!

Today, I bring you another helpful hint that might be old news for some or, it might be just the thing you need to hear before starting in on your newest most lovely silky or slippery yarn.

When you are going to use a smooth or slippery yarn, for example, silk, rayon, a particularly slick novelty, etc, you should not pull from the center! Use the outside strand of that ball. Most of my sanity will be retained as I use this silk blend lace weight and use that outside end.

Yarns made from animal fibers benefit the most from being pulled from the center, relaxing into the extra air in the ball as the center is removed.

I am also coming around to pulling from the outside on most commercially wound balls. Saves me the trouble of dealing with the guts of the ball on the first pull.

Happy Needling,

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Countdown to Knitmas: Day 18!

Hi everyone! Today I want to share with you a SALE that we are having this week only!

Buy 2 - Get 1 free on
Today (Dec 18) through Sunday (Dec 23)

Mix and match, any of the following yarns:
Starstruck, Flounce, Triana, Triana Lux, Tricor, Tricor Lux, Bossa Nova, 
Rowan Kidsilk Creation, Kidsilk Creation Stripe, Glee, and Lacey.

Monday, December 17, 2012

Countdown to Knitmas - Day 17!

'Tis the season to party! Karin was on her way to a Holiday Party after work on Saturday and was well adorned. Lovely outfit and stunning knitted shawl, she already appeared to be dressed just right for a good and fancy time. She was missing one thing - a knitting bag that could double as an evening bag. A silk Lantern Moon bag is just the thing. The next day, Karin reported that keeping her knitting with her all night was both entertaining and great conversation fodder. We thought that we should pass this clever tip on to all of you. Luckily, we still have a few left in case you don't already have something to fit the bill.

Happy Needling,

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Countdown to Knitmas - Day 15!

Kaity has a great line of suggestion started with the cute cowl on Day 14. I want to keep that ball rolling as cowls are equally fashionable gifts since they can be a breeze to whip up.

I would like to suggest the Drop Stitch Cowl by Abi Gregorio. (It's a freebie!) A fellow knitter, Lydia, whipped out a couple of these this last week among the flurry of gifts that she was speedily making up.

We have tons of gorgeous chunky yarns to be used for this project. An accessory is the perfect place to use a fun or bold color and a project that only requires 110 yds is the perfect place top sample a bit of yarns that tempt you all year long.

Happy Needling!

Friday, December 14, 2012

Countdown to Knitmas - Day 16!

Today, I have a little stocking stuffer for the knitter in your life! Specifically the sock knitter!

Have you knit with the Knitter's Pride Dreamz needles? I absolutely love them, and I really want this needle set, it contains double pointed needles in sizes 0, 1, 1.5, 2, 2,5, and 3.

This set costs $40 for 6 pairs of needles, a pretty good deal! I think any sock knitter would love this set.

Happy sock knitting!
<3: Kaity

Countdown to Knitmas: Day 14!

Ok, the days are going faster and faster and it is soon approaching the big day! You have one more girl on your list that you need a gift for, and you have stash yarn but not a ton of time to knit anything. I've got your solution!

Here's a tutorial from A Crafy House for the Easy No Knit Spring Cowl. Totally cute, right?

I love the look of this cowl, so cute to throw on with a t-shirt and jeans, or a cute spring dress. All you have to do is braid and tie, and you've got a cute gift! I think any girl would love this, especially teenagers and college-aged, cowls are all the rage right now.

Hope this helps, especially if you are pressed for time!
Happy knitting (or braiding!),
<3: Kaity

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Countdown to Knitmas - Day 13!

How is your holiday season going? Are you done decorating? How is your gift making/shopping going?

I have a suggestion for a stocking stuffer for your knitting friends.

This is the Fix-A-Stitch. It is a set of double ended crochet hooks that have been designed to help make picking up garter stitch (the easiest stitch to make and the hardest to fix).

Happy Needling,

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Countdown to Knitmas: Day 12!

If you've been living under a rock for the last year or so, you might not have heard of Pinterest. If you have, you know how much of a time suck it is! While perusing Pinterest the other day, I came across this helpful guide to decoding yarn labels from (which is a very cute site if you haven't checked it out already!), and I thought I'd share it with you all today!
Happy knitting!
<3: Kaity

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Countdown to Knitmas - Day 11!

Today's tip is an oldie but a goodie. Sometimes the tail can get in your way, dangling there trying to make you knit with it or getting wrapped around the working yarn. Sometimes you may need that tail to stay long (for a later seam, perhaps). Would you like a handy hint using a household item to solve the case of the annoying tail?

Whenever I wipe the kitchen counter, I seem to find an abandoned bread tab. These little tabs are the perfect thing to toss into your notions bag rather than into the garbage. Wrap your tail around that tab and you are short one less annoyance.

Happy Needling,

Monday, December 10, 2012

Countdown to Knitmas: Day 10!

Hi guys! Lois wanted me to share this project idea with you today, it uses 1 skein of the luscious Reywa Fibers 100% Yak Down "Embrace" yarn.

Here's what the company has to say about this wonderful yarn:

"Inspired by the warm embrace we received from Tibetan friends when we first entered their homes, our first yarn – Embrace – is 100% pure yak down of the finest quality. Sumptuously warm and luxuriously soft, Embrace yarns make truly unforgettable accessories. Perfect for a shawl or wrap, a cowl or scarf, a winter’s hat or luxe gloves, Reywa yarns have a buttery handle that is absolutely wonderful to knit with. Our yarn also re-knits well, ensuring those inevitable small mistakes won’t show up in your finished project. As pieces made with Reywa’s 100% yak down yarns are worn, the yarn blooms slowly, creating a lovely halo of warmth that increases the unique quality of the item"

Lois is knitting this cowl right now, which is a free pattern with the purchase of a skein of Embrace:
You know, as someone who works at a yarn store and sees customer's projects all day long, sometimes I get "project envy", where I'm totally jealous of someone else's project and it looks so much more fun to knit than what I've got on my needles. Lois is knitting this cowl out of the Reywa Embrace, and I'm totally jealous of it!

The yarn is so buttery soft and smooth, and has great stitch definition, It's good stuff! If you want to come pick up a skein of it for yourself, be sure to ask for the free pattern for this cowl! It'll knit up great into a treasured gift (or maybe just keep it for yourself, I won't tell!)

Happy knitting!
<3: Kaity

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Countdown to Knitmas - Day 9!

Here is a new free pattern from the brains of Karin and Anne. Headbands are very speedy and I finally got the chance to use an very lovely new superwash merino yarn, Ewe Ewe. It has a great feel and really saturated colors. Best of all, the project only takes one ball

BTFCD Quick Headband
By: Karin Wilmoth and Anne Lecrivain-Cozzoli

1 ball of Ewe Ewe Worsted (95yds(86m)/50g), color 20
US 7 (4.5mm) needles
2 ⅝ inch buttons
3 (or more) decorative buttons of various sizes
Sewing thread, Sewing Needle
Tapestry Needle

Gauge: 18 sts and 24 rows to 4 inches(not super important because you will be deciding the length as you go)

Measure the head of the recipient: _____ inches.
Subtract 2 inches from that measurement: _____inches. Let’s call that number Bob.
CO 14
Row 1: (K2, P2) 6 times, end K2
Row 2: (P2, K2) 6 times, end P2
Repeat rows 1 and 2  five more times.
Increase Section:
Row 3: kfb, K1, (P2, K2) 2 times, P2, kfb, K1 (16 sts)
Row 4: P1, K1, P1, (K2, P2) 2 times, K2, P1, K1, P1
Row 5: kfb, P1, K1, (P2, K2) 2 times, P2, kfb, P1, K1 (18 sts)
Row 6: P1, K2, P1, (K2, P2) 2 times, K2, P1, K2, P1
Row 7: kfb, P2, K1, (P2, K2) 2 times, P2, K1, P2, kfb (20 sts)
Row 8: P2, K2, P1, (K2, P2) 2 times, K2, P1,K2, P2
Row 9: K2, P2, kfb, (P2, K2) 2 times, P2, kfb, P2, K2 (22 sts)
Row 10: (P2, K2) 5 times, end P2
Straight Section:
Measure piece and record the length: _____inches. Let’s call this number Ted.
Multiply that number by 2: _____inches. Let’s call that number Fred.
_____(Bob) - _____(Fred) = ______inches. Let’s call that number Chuck.
Also, _____ (Ted) + _____(Chuck)= _____ inches. Let’s call that number Daniel.
Row 11: (K2, P2) 5 times, end with K2
Row 12: (P2, K2) 5 times, end with P2
Repeat these two rows until your piece measures the same as Daniel from the cast on edge.
Decrease Section:
Row 13: K2, P2, k2tog, (P2, K2) 2 times, P2, k2tog, P2, K2 (20 sts)
Row 14: P2, K2, P1, (K2, P2) 2 times, K2, P1,K2, P2
Row 15: k2tog, P2, K1, (P2, K2) 2 times, P2, K1, P2, k2tog(18 sts)
Row 16: P1, K2, P1, (K2, P2) 2 times, K2, P1, K2, P1
Row 17: K1, p2tog, K1, (P2, K2) 2 times, P2, K1, p2tog, K1 (16 sts)
Row 18: P1, K1, P1, (K2, P2) 2 times, K2, P1, K1, P1
Row 19: k2tog, K1, (P2, K2) 2 times, P2, K1, k2tog (16 sts)
Row 20: (P2, K2) 3 times, end with P2

Nearing the End:
Row 21: (K2, P2) 6 times, end K2
Row 22: (P2, K2) 6 times, end P2
Repeat rows 1 and 2  four more times.
For Buttonholes: (Note: the Buttonholes can be optional; if you skip them, then do rows 1 and 2 once more instead of the following.)
Next row: K2, YO, p2tog, K2, P2, K2, p2tog, YO, K2.
Then, work Row 22 one last time.
BO in pattern.
Weave in ends.
Sew the buttons onto the cast on end.
Fold your headband so that the back is centered under the center front. Position your decorative buttons a little off center so that they will show as when worn.

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Countdown to Knitmas: Day 8!

Hi everyone! Today I want to share with you some fun and cute ways to use up stash yarn and make some quick gifts at the same time!

Have you played with pom poms before? We have these nifty pom pom makers at the shop that will make any size from teeny tiny to jumbo! Pom poms are great to add to lots of things!

You could top off a hat:

Pom poms are a great way to use up little odd balls of leftover yarn, and are really fun to make!

Happy knitting (and pom pom-ing!),
<3: Kaity

Friday, December 7, 2012

Countdown to Knitmas - Day 7!

So, tomorrow is our Holiday party. It has 3 main features that get me excited -

1) Food Drive for Food Share which bring a donation of 4 canned goods or cash. Visit their website to find out the best foods to give. An interesting fact shared there - for every $1 donated, they can provide $5 of value to those they serve.

2) POTLUCK! I look forward to seeing what all of our favorite festive dishes are, gathered together to share.

3) Hand crafted Ornament Exchange @ 2:30. Bring your ornament wrapped so as to keep it a surprise and we will assign you a number. At the chosen time we will begin the picking. ;) I wrapped my ornament in crepe paper which can be handy to accomodate any strange shapes of your decorations.

Thus, we have reached my subject of today's post. Do you still need ideas for ornaments?

I have been joking that even a popsicle stick ornament would satisfy the need for your submission to be handmade. Having been trolling for sometime, I have actually found some pretty cute or classy things that you can do with those humble wooden sticks -
5 Craft Stick Ornaments (this one is mostly on the cute, childlike side)
Popsicle Stick Nativity
Decorative Snowflakes
Painted Sleds

For a quickie that is more audience appropriate -
Yarn Balls
Tiny Knitted Stockings

Of course, a little craft felt can go a long way -
Bacon Tribute

I think that you could whip any of these up before tomorrow's exchange (the stockings might be the most time consuming).

Happy Needling and see you tomorrow afternoon with your canned goods, potluck dish, and ornament!

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Countdown to Knitmas: Day 6!

Need a quick knit for the hip girl in your life? I've found a super cute and quick knit for you!

 This is a free pattern by Alexandra Tinsley (who is one of my favorite designers, click her name to see her other great designs) that she designed for 1 skein of Malabrigo Rasta.

The pattern for the Wolf Bait Hat is here.

I want to make one for myself! I'm sure it knits up very quick on size 13 needles!

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Countdown to Knitmas - Day 5!

Do you have all your gifts planned? At least a rough idea of what you want to give your loved ones? What about that person who is so very hard to pick for? Terry had a great suggestion - teach this person to knit (or have us do it).

You could put together a beginner's kit as pictured and make a gift coupon redeemable with private lessons with their favorite knitter, you. Your time can be one of the best value additions to a gift and you will be creating unforgettable memories as you bring another knitter into the fold. Then, in the following years, you can gift that individual with delicious yarn and patterns, rather than trying to figure out the perfect thing. If you aren't feeling very instructive, then you could leave the teaching to us and include a gift certificate for the value of a Beginning Knitting class.

Do you know how to crochet? How about this hypothetical person who is hard to buy for? Maybe you could take a Beginning Crochet class together.

New dates for both of these beginning classes will be available after Dec. 28 (thus the suggestion of purchasing a gift certificate for the value of either class).

Happy Needling,