Thursday, March 22, 2007

Woolbearers is Moving!!!!!!

Finally, we found a larger space.
Look for us at 90 High Street in the center of historic Mount Holly in early May.

We are right in the center of town.
Tons of free, public parking is right behind the store, with on street parking a few doors down the hill.
In the meantime, continue to visit us in Mill Race Village, on Church.

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

More Bounced Check This is the first jacket I did out of Dzined wool and hemp. The center detail shows the cool edge finish. You apply that after the jacket is finished. It reminds me of the triangles you do when you are beginning an entrelac piece.

Monday, March 12, 2007

Bounced Check Jacket
Support Group

Simply Knit is a book of fabulous sweater patterns. I first saw the book shortly after we opened Woolbearers and was immediately smitten with the Bounced Check Jacket. As a fairly new knitter of less than a year at that time, it was a challenge to contemplate and also nerve wracking to think I could use that much yarn on one project. I wanted to use a worsted weight, hand dyed yarn of hemp and wool by Dzined, so had to figure out dimensions because the pattern calls for dk weight Shetland wool by Jamieson. Anyway, the jacket was great fun to knit and very easy. I've wanted to do another one in the Jamieson ever since, and a few weeks ago the chance presented itself when several customers said they would like to knit the jacket but needed some support because it looks so complicated.

Then I got lucky when our faithful customer, Gwen said she wanted to do it, too and I knew I could count on her to offer technical support. She chose ten spring colors that include saffron, gold, a soft fuchsia, pink, violet, lavender and black. It is really striking. She is almost done with the jacket! See picture above.

I've only worked on the squares when I am in the group, so as you can see from the pictures on the left, I'm not getting too far. And the thing is, I really want to work on it! It is so relaxing, and once you start with the squares, you can knit them mindlessly. You pick up stitches along one selvedge and cast on the rest and just keep knitting them. The diagonal ridge is formed by decreasing two stitches in the center of the square. As the sweater progresses, I'll post pictures of mine and the others. Also, I hope to knit more of the great sweaters in the book!

Sunday, March 11, 2007

Machine Love The object of my affection is a large and dusty carding machine that arrived in my barn this afternoon. My husband wrestled it into place with the previous owner, who drove from Utica to deliver it to us. After the store closed, Myra and I drove home as fast as we could to gaze upon it. I openly stroked it; she touched it when she thought no one was looking.

After dinner, I went back out to the barn, freezing as it was after dark, and spent an hour cleaning it and looking at it. I can imagine the colors we are going to blend in this new toy. I carded a king sized pillow case of California Red in about two minutes. I want it's area to be neat and clean. The barn was last swept out maybe last summer. So far, because of the new arrival, in one day, it was swept twice. Now I can't wait to clean the darn barn!

We have lots of dyed wool that I plan on carding tomorrow, rich magenta, a soft violet, terra cotta, Chinese red and sage green. How it will go together, only tomorrow will tell, but I bet I get up at sunrise with a smile on my face, raring to go!

Saturday, March 10, 2007

Nickie Epstein's Trunk Show

If you get a chance, this show is a must see. The lace edged red sweater is shown, with the detail of the cuff. The fair isle jacket has a very interesting bottom edging and a great treatment around the collar. The felted shawl has a tiny bit of beading on the flowers. Modeled beautifully by our new gal, Tami. There 12 items in all and worth the trip.

Thursday, March 08, 2007

Don't You Wish Your Girlfriend Was A Hot Knitter Like Me?

Ok, picture this. A moderately obese, middle-aged female in flannel pjs, hair in a scrunchy, sitting cross legged on the couch amidst four hog tied dogs and several overflowing knitting bags. On the TV comes a dozen (more or less) half naked, young and fit girls, singers, looking for the next Pussy Cat Dolls or Pussy Dolls Singers or something like that, gyrating and flagrating (great non word). Embarressed, I look around for the remote which is in the mess, hoping to change it before my husband of 38 years looks up from his magazine, but, alas, it is too late. He sees them, we make eye contact and have a good laugh. He's happy I am spending my life doing something that makes me so happy.

Thank god I am not a teenager any more. I never have to worry about getting a bikini wax. The last time I got stopped for a traffic violation, the policeman laughed and gave me a warning after I asked him to block the sun shining on my face so he wouldn't see my whiskers. I can pretty much do whatever I want as long as I don't hurt any one's feelings. Anything I want to knit, I can knit. Whatever yarn I want, my wonderful business partner will get for me. I meet interesting, talented women everyday who are excited about creating something beautiful. Women come into the store, sit to knit, and it is almost instant friendship. I spent an hour with Karen today and we shared stories from our heart while knitting small modular squares our of Shetland wool. It was pretty therapeutic.

So I have added yet another project, the Bounced Check Jacket from the Simply Knit book. I knit one the first year Woolbearers opened out of a wool and hemp blend, hand dyed by Dzined. It was a fun, easy and impressive project and I have always wanted to knit another one, but out of the Jamieson dk weight shetland the pattern called for. We have a huge selection of colors and that alone is inspiration for knitting. The first cube is filled with all the reds and roses, so I picked from that cube. I rarely knit with those colors, yet they really are my colors.

A new thing I am trying out is not so easy; I'm writing a pattern for an entrelac bag I designed on the needles. Didn't know it was hard to do this after the fact. But I am determined because the bag is so cute, (see picture) and I want to do another one. It's knit of our thick and thin, worsted weight space dyed yarn. Just two skeins, no color changes, easy as can be. The rose is hand dyed woolen rug hooking fabric, created by Pattiann Finch. We have a selection of wool and silk ribbon flowers, some with hooked centers by Pattiann for sale. They are great embellishments for sweaters and bags.

Nicky Epstein's trunk show got to Woolbearers a week early and will be in the store until March 18th. If you want to be inspired, please come in and take a look at the sweaters, shawls and scarves we have. There is one coat that is a little fun and different, but the rest of the show is gorgeous.

Ok, time to go. Asap I will post some information about painted warps, the latest project going on in the studio.