All the yarn that's fit to knit!

Come on in, the yarn's fine!

Monday, December 24, 2007


It's been a wonderful blur around the shop the past couple of weeks, here's some of the mighty fine projects that we've been cranking out...

First time knitters be proud, check out this scarf made for a lovely mom.

This little gift bear was kind enough to model one of our new shop Baby Hat pattern samples.

Everyone loves a good blankie, right?

This one made by M. was a first trip into the world of delightful randomness, very unusual for Ms. M, isn't she grand! What an astounding job!

This Big blankie is a Christmas Graduation present for a very special State student! Look at that color! Beautiful representation of the brick campus over there in Raleigh, but much softer of course!

Some of the best gifts you give can even be for yourself. That is if you can get them finished! This sweater was made by our Anne. She did finish, though Leo tried to stop her- and it is gorgeous! Picture on the model soon.

This sweater is for a very special man to our shop, I assure you HE is NOT purple. It was made out of our favorite yarn (Jaeger Extra Fine Merino DK- now discontinued!), very special indeed!

Look at that detail!

As for me, I wasn't going to do ANY Christmas knitting this year. 

What happened? I'm not too sure. 

We wish you all a Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!
Keep up the beautiful work, and we will continue to share and admire it all!

Monday, December 17, 2007


You never can know how a gift will be received. 

You can never be sure the impact that you will have. 

When I create things I feel that they then become something all on their own. I put in my most honest effort, all of my available skills at the time, I am thoughtful of the person that I am creating for, and I always knit in a little piece of my heart. Then it gets tough, I have to send my creation out into the world. It has a job to do, and most of the time I won't be around to make sure it fits OK, holds together, is warm enough, is the right color or is generally loved. It's a little nerve fraying actually- if I am being honest. 

I knit because I love the act of knitting, love the yarn, love the community and most of all I knit because in each and every project that I knit I have THOUSANDS of opportunities (stitches) to think/pray/hope/laugh/cry/feel/ remember and love the person that I am knitting for. 
Even if I get frustrated or negative or angry during, or even AT my knitting there are hundreds of rows and thousands of stitches to turn everything around. There are always more opportunities to get it right, it is never too late to fix it. Even if you have to (get to) rip it out and start over.

It is never to late to show someone that you have love and time for them.

There is a lovely woman who was a powerful member of my extended family, The Mother of two dear friends, my big brother's OtherMother, a woman who cared for him when he was not home with us. She raised two super people, has a fantastic husband and BIG family, and a way around the kitchen that is not to be matched. Her name is Jean, she fed me on many occasions, and made me laugh on many more, she is the reason that I love French Onion Soup, maybe the reason that I like onions at all. 
She was kind and gracious to me even when I didn't deserve it.
She got cancer. She decided that a second battle with this disease and the drugs that they use to try to kill it would be too much. 

When my brother told me this, I will admit I didn't have any clue what to say, thank the heavens I knew what to knit. It had to be a Blanket, something so soft and cozy, warm as hell, they live in Maine after all, lightweight (so it wouldn't be a struggle to pull it over yourself even if you were feeling weak) and the colors natural and bright at the same time. 
I got myself some Inca Alpaca in three natural browns, took my first foray into cables and got a bright green for the border all to pay homage to Jean's Irish heritage. I knitted the thing immediately, and there it sat, just waiting for me to weave in the ends. I tell you I couldn't touch the thing to finish it, it made me sad. It waited patiently in my closet, and my brother kept updating me that the family was well and enjoying their time together. This fall Jean got sick. It wouldn't be long. I pulled Blankie out of the closet, wove in the ends, took a really bad picture and paid way too much to ship him to Maine in a "wicked hurry!". I didn't think, I just sent it.
Jean passed away this week and she will be missed. 
Her sister was kind enough to tell my big brother at the memorial that Blankie was indeed loved, he was with her until the very end. If I ever see Blankie again I will give him a pat and say "good job".

This is why I knit. 
Though I never saw her knit a stitch, Jean was a knitter- my niece has the sweater to prove it.

Surely she deserved a handknit that was made just for her.

Thursday, December 6, 2007

It's Beginning To Look A Lot Like Christmas

All three of our stores are bustling with gifts on the make and holiday decorating. We have a lot of shoppers who mysteriously do not seem to knit at all... I wonder who they might be buying for?

yarns etc. in Greensboro has its halls decked with joyful fiber displays;

What a big task for such a little lamb, I bet she's spinning up some more good ideas!

I think we could all benefit from a few more yarn decorations laying around. 
Check out that tree!

In other news, Santa himself stopped by our Carrboro store looking for gifts for you! Leave him some nice treats this year, he's had to get an early start. He does have a nice modern sleigh to move things along!

And now we can really start the celebration- since we have received our holiday card from two VERY SPECIAL knitwear designers. Can you find them in this picture?

It's Kaffe Fassett and Brandon Mably!

Happy Holidays and we look forward to seeing you at our Holiday Knit Night- Thursday December 20th! All three stores will be closed Christmas Eve (Monday) and Christmas Day (Tuesday). Hurry in and we'll help you pull it all together. Carrboro will be open Sunday the 23rd for all of your last minute shopping emergencies!

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Thanksgiving Knitting

Tuesday and Wednesday were busy, busy, busy in the shop with people picking out their Thanksgiving Knitting projects. On Wednesday afternoon at 4:45 I realized that I needed to get my holiday knitting projects together. I was headed to the beach for 2 days and needed various projects for different types of knitting. Here are the bags of stuff I took with me for less than 48 hours at the beach.

Here is what was in those bags

Starting from the left corner and around;
Green Tweed sweater to sew together.
Balls of yarn for my stepdaughter to knit a scarf for her BF.
The front of a sweater in Kidsilk Haze to start.
Inca Alpaca to start a new scarf.
Teal and lime King George to make a scarf on the dark drive down.
More balls of yarn to make a scarf if I finished knitting everything.
Red, green and white yarn to knit Christmas stockings.
My sunglasses and phone charger that I forgot I put in there and couldn't find until Thursday night when I got to the bottom of the bag.
Some extra yarn that my Mother wanted me to bring her.

So I knit in the dark on the way down, I knit on Thursday morning after a wonderful walk on the beach just after sunrise. There were lots of people who are much better cooks than me responsible for the big meal so I could knit and watch the confusion in the kitchen. I was on clean up duty and then I had to take a nap so I didn't get to knit again until the early evening. My stepdaughter started a scarf for her BF. Then the BF decided he needed to learn to knit- so we taught him. Then my stepson who knows how to knit needed to get in on all that yarn so he started a scarf. My mother was also knitting so there was a lot of knitting going on at our house. I also knit on the way home.
Here is what I accomplished;

I started a Christmas stocking.
I started the second half of my Kidsilk Haze Cardigan.
I started the Basketweave Inca Alpaca Scarf.
I started and finished the sideways scarf.

I don't know what I was thinking- probably that I would knit nonstop and be snowed in for a week! I am so happy I accomplished what I did!

The knitting was great! So was the company! And we had great food too!!!

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Marine Sciences 101

In my residency here at yarns etc. I have learned a great many things. I have been encouraged, challenged and nurtured, all in the comforting presence of soft and colorful yarns. This is one of my most happy places. So of course you can imagine that when my good friend S. announced that she was having a baby, I was excited to show off some of my new skills and talents. Now I immediately started knitting. Baby! I will tell you, I am a shameless lover of babies and kids, so I started knitting a LOT! I made a blanket before she even started to get big, hats, a maternity sweater and burp cloths. Beautiful things really, but I was excited to give them away and there wasn't even a baby shower yet! I knew I had to have something to bring to that. Then I found a book called "knitted toys"  '25 fresh and fabulous designs' by Zoe Mellor. I tell you there were these cute little fishes and I was sold! A rainbow of colors in Rowan Handknit cotton and a flurry of needles later, I had 6 of my own little cotton fish! Now here's where it gets most interesting... in the book the fish are strung up and separated by lovely painted wooden beads. Now I am a realist and I REALLY wanted this child to play with these fish, so I figure he'd have the paint sucked off those pretty quick, and um, not too washable. Then I thought of the alternatives; plastic- yuck, glass- one good whack on the floor... can you see where I'm going with this?

So, I'm mulling over my little problem and my Sweet Man who is ever so confident about my skills and abilities says to me, "I know, you can make a jellyfish! A Portuguese man-of-war! There's a picture in the National Geographic, and I can draw it out for you! You can do it!" Now this may sound odd, but my sweetie knows S. very well and we discussed her amazing artistic talents while we admired the gorgeous print of birds that she made us and is over our fireplace. She would love it! I think. First baby though, that could change things. We decided to make a go of it, something really different for a very special baby! I started to talk about this idea at the shop and I got some strange looks and responses, not a traditional gift I know. But as always Mary egged me on knowingly, and I got even more excited! I left that day with three MORE colors of Handknit cotton, a pattern for the curly scarf, some velcro and a plan. 
Sort of.

So that's it, my Man O' War Mobile for the newest little man in our lives! Now is the time where I thank everyone who helped me create this gift; my sweetie- he's full of bright ideas, my coworkers who showed me the way down an overwhelming and delightful path of yarn, every customer who needed help and ended up teaching me something new too- love the sharing, Mary, Mary, Mary!- who is an inspiration, a gift and a killer resource and of course S. and J. for making me such a beautiful baby boy to knit for! By the way, he loves it!

Yes, I made the hat. I can't help myself- he's adorable, and kind enough to model for me!
Happy Thanksgiving! See you at the shop!

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Here goes!

Welcome to our new shop blog!
First, I'd like to take a moment to thank all of our lovely customers and supporters. This blog will serve to feed our local yarn community with info, opportunities for yarn fun, and lots of laughter. All three of our stores will be contributing to this effort. I am delighted to welcome you to Carrboro, Greensboro and Raleigh all in one convenient location.

Ladies and Gentlemen, start your knitting!

Coming soon... Who wants to see what happened to these cute little fishes?

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