Friday, December 14, 2012

One and 0ne half weeks

Quick Christmas Gifts

One of the quickest gifts ever is a hand knit dishcloth. I often knit dishcloth patterns in quality cotton or linen and give them as face clothes. Ravelry has close to 8000 patterns for dishcloths .

The original design, one many of us have knit.

An interesting variation is a textured version called Eloomanator.

My current favourite is the picot edged version from Churchmouse Designs.

Knit up a couple either in craft cotton as dishcloth, or a better quality cotton or linen as a face cloth as a start to a gift basket.

With a face cloth, add a couple of bars of luxury soap, a good novel or magazine and you have a nice mini-spa.

If I might suggest, a local soap maker I have discovered at Aurora Farmers Market, has wonderful bath products - Kibo. The following link brings you to their website to view their selection and location.

Another nice gift package idea is to put together a little basket of kitchen based products; a couple of dish cloths, some hand cream and hand wash and maybe an aloe vera plant. My Mom always kept an aloe vera in the kitchen as first aid for burns or rough hands.
 If you receive a burn just clip off a piece of the plant, squeeze out some of the goeey sap inside and apply directly to the sore or burnt skin. It really does help take out the sting. This is a safe folk remedy that has been used for decades.

Gifts for Knitters

Elizabeth Zimmermann was a British-born knitter known for revolutionizing the modern practice of knitting through her books and instructional series on American public television. I find Elizabeth Zimmerman fascinating. Her designs are unique and timeless. Many are one piece with minimal seaming and fit together like origami puzzles. Early in her designing career, she became frustrated with all the changes magazine editors were making to her designs. She was ahead of her time and rather than appreciating that, editors were trying to hold her back. So she started publishing her designs herself and Schoolhouse Press was born. Her daughter Meg Swansen, also an accomplished designer, has continued the publishing company. Knitters continue to be fascinated by her designs today. Baby Surprise Jacket is the number one cardigan on Ravelry with over 18,000 posted projects. If you enjoy unusual or creative structure, you would love Elizabeth's designs and books.

The now famous Baby Surprise Jacket.
 A few of Elizabeth's many books.
Knit One Knit All is a recent Schoolhouse Press publication. Elizabeth's daughter,Meg has put together a collection of her mothers previously unpublished designs. Many have quite unusual structures.

I find this mitered cardigan very intriguing.

Pre-Christmas Specials

All books reduced 25%

Friday, December 7, 2012

2 and 1/2 weeks to go

This is embarrassing. I have done it again. I seem to have a problem reading calendars properly. Once last year, I announced a sale using the dates from an incorrect month. The first day of the sale came and went with hardly any customers. We were disappointed and surprised. Day 2 of the sale, same again. A customer came in saying she was just checking things out and would come back on Friday when the sale started. Light bulbs went on. Back in November I counted the Fridays until Christmas. There were 8, so OK 8 weeks to go to Christmas. Wrong, 8 Fridays means 7 weeks. Beth, you have done it again. Some one out there must have noticed I couldn't count. Couldn't you have saved me from embarrassing myself week after week. Like a couple of weeks ago when we were decorating the store for our Christmas Open House. Without me noticing, Gabriela clipped a Santa Claus clothes pin on the end of my pigtail. Then she let me go grocery shopping and doing various errands without telling me. I finally noticed it later than night when I was brushing out my hair before I went to bed. She thinks I have forgotten. I have not, I am just waiting for the right moment to exact my revenge.  Any way

It is 2 and 1/2 weeks to Christmas

Quick Knits for Babies

Minnow hat is adorable and a quick knit. Knit as written in sock yarn, it fits a newborn with a head size of about 14". The same pattern knit with DK yarn and you have an 18" size for somewhat older kids.  Other than the change of yarn to create the larger size, the only change I made was to increase the spacing between decrease rounds when you start the tail.

Minnow Hat in Sock yarn

Free pattern at the following link -

Easiest Ever Baby Blanket is just an over sized dish cloth and can be sized to use exactly the amount of yarn you have. Knit diagonally, you increase until you have used half your yarn and then start decreasing. 

Free Pattern at the following link -

One Piece Top Down Cardigan from Cabin "Fever Need A Baby Cardigan" is quick and simple. This pattern book allows you to use any weight of yarn from sock to chunky to knit a basic cardigan for age newborn to 18 months.  The DK or worsted version knits up in a couple of evenings and no seams. When you are finished knitting, sew on buttons and you are done.


Gifts for Knitters


One of our favourites collections of instructional knitting DVD's are Lucy Neatby's. Her teaching style is clear and entertaining. She has an extensive selection of topics. The full listing can be viewed on her website at the link below.
We always have a small selection of Lucy's DVDs on hand but if you want a particular topic, if you place an order by December 15th, we can have it in time for Christmas.

Pre-Christmas Specials


While supplies last, all magazines reduced 25%.