Archive for the ‘40th Anniversary’ Category

Santa Fe Summer towels by Chris Hammel

Wednesday, July 30th, 2014
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We’re smack-dab in the middle of Summer here at WEBS and thought that would be the perfect time to bring you The Santa Fe Summer dish towels from Chris Hammel as the 7th in our year-long series of special guest designer weaving drafts.

Sante Fe Summer Towels draft designed by Chris Hammel - available exclusively at yarn.com

Chris says, “Valley Yarns 8/2 unmercerized cotton is perfect for thirsty, washable, kitchen towels, and what could be better than a bright, cheery towel in lively colors that evoke a Santa Fe summer. This 4-shaft draft is easy to thread and weave and will result in an ample kitchen towel. If you would like to increase the length of your warp, you could try different treadling variations for each subsequent towel and create a set for yourself or gifts for family and friends.”

Sante Fe Summer Towels draft designed by Chris Hammel - available exclusively at yarn.com

Using sewing thread to weave 1″ of plain weave as the the under-hem for each end of the towel gives your hems a much less visible profile. Bonus: If you use a sewing thread like Gutermann you can pop the thread right onto your shuttle without needing to wind a separate bobbin!

 

The Waterfall Jacket from Debbie Bliss

Sunday, July 27th, 2014
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We’re so excited to share this next design with you! The amazing Debbie Bliss has designed the cozy Waterfall Jacket in our Valley Yarns Deerfield

The Waterfall Jacket designed by Debbie Bliss in Valley Yarns Deerfield - available exclusively at yarn.com

She has put together a modern, boxy cardigan in a simple but sophisticated broken rib pattern that is sure to become one of your go-to wardrobe staples. Designed with just the right amount of positive ease and fantastic front pockets this sweater looks great dressed up or styled more casually. You can never go wrong with a pocket! 

The Waterfall Jacket designed by Debbie Bliss in Valley Yarns Deerfield - available exclusively at yarn.com

The Maplewood Cardigan from Carol Sulcoski

Monday, July 21st, 2014
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As with each of our previous specialty hand dyed yarns, we have three amazing designs to share with you that have been knit and crocheted in our Valley Yarns Northfield hand dyed by Malabrigo. First up is the Maplewood Cardigan designed by Carol Sulcoski.

The Maplewood Cardigan by Carol Sulcoski - available exclusively at yarn.com

From Carol – “I have been a customer of WEBS for a long, long time – I remember receiving the really old newsletters that were more or less a typed-out list of what yarns were available.  I still get so excited getting the WEBS catalog in the mail, although now it’s as beautiful as a magazine. I was so excited to be asked to design a sweater for the WEBS Anniversary celebration. I do some hand dyeing, and love designing with hand dyed yarns. When I found out I was getting Northfield, I was thrilled – it is probably my all-time favorite Valley Yarns base. And the colorway dyed by Malabrigo, called Piedras, was fascinating: at first look, it reads like a semisolid brown, but the more I knit with it, the more I noticed all of the many other colors that were in it, shades of brown from golden brown to russet to taupe, and also hints of lavender, gold, gray and slate. When I thought about what to design, I decided to design the kind of sweater I’d want to make myself (if I had more time to knit for myself). That meant a minimum of finishing, it meant something without long sleeves or a high neck (since I always run warm), and lately I’ve gotten the most wear out of longer sweaters that I can wear over a dress. I also wanted to figure out a way to showcase the beautiful dyeing, so I opted for a mostly-stockinette-stitch garment, where the colors would be the focus of attention. Next I took into account the qualities of Northfield yarn. It’s got excellent stitch definition, so I opted for an edging to show off how beautifully the yarn looks in a pattern. It’s got silk and alpaca in it, which gives it drape, so that was a good match for a longer sweater that would have a bit of swing at the hem. But it’s mostly merino, which means it has elasticity to help keep it from stretching too much – also a good quality for a longer sweater. I swatched a couple of different edgings, and found the one I used in a Japanese stitch dictionary, although I modified it a little. I began knitting from the bottom hem up, starting with the edging. I used raglan shoulder shaping, and kept the sweater fronts purposely narrow so they wouldn’t need a closure (and I hope that this will make the sweater more versatile when it comes to fit; if you have a larger bust, it won’t matter because the front edges are so narrow they fall along the side of the bustline). The design came together really quickly and I didn’t have to do too much fiddling with things, although I did play around with different edgings for the armholes and neckband. I ended up using a simple crocheted crab stitch. I really do want to knit another one of these for myself!”

The Maplewood Cardigan by Carol Sulcoski - available exclusively at yarn.com

Carol also offers these useful tips, “The biggest tip for knitters who make this sweater: if you do use a hand-dyed yarn (and I highly recommend the hand dyed Northfield!), pay close attention to the slight color variations between skeins. It’s pretty much impossible to hand dye skeins exactly alike, so you may notice that some skeins look more “alike” than others. I knit from two different skeins at the same time, alternating skeins so that I knit a row or two with the first skein, then switched to the second one. (Of course if you use solid Northfield, this won’t be an issue.) I chose to switch balls of yarn at the side (imagine where a side seam would run if the sweater were seamed) so that the front edges, which are knit as you go along, wouldn’t have noticeable places where I had to weave in ends. Have fun!”

Weaving Contest Winners!

Friday, July 18th, 2014
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The winners were officially announced at Convergence last evening and we’re so thrilled to finally share the results of our Weaving Contest with you! Congratulations to all our winners!

WEBS 40th Anniversary Weaving Contest, winners in the Accessories category.

WEBS 40th Anniversary Weaving Contest, winners in the Byways category.

 

WEBS 40th Anniversary Weaving Contest, winners in the Clothing category.

 

WEBS 40th Anniversary Weaving Contest, winners in the Decorative category.

Ready, Set, Knit! 364: Steve talks with his parents, Art and Barbara Elkins

Saturday, July 12th, 2014
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This week Steve talks with his parents, Art and Barbara, about WEBS’ transition from our Kellogg Ave. location in Amherst to our current location at 75 Service Center Rd. Northampton.

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In the early 90′s mail order was busy, their little parking lot was always full, and the shop was packed full of customers and yarns. They were bursting at the seams and there were warehouses full of yarn all over the valley.

They talk about trying to find a larger location in Amherst and ultimately deciding to look in Northampton where they found our current building, which had been occupied by the Telephone company and housed their offices and their garage.

And Art tells Steve how yarn.com came to be.

Steve’s Yarn Picks :

Upcoming Events:

Convergence is next week in Providence RI, and hasn’t been in New England in over 20 years!

Northampton Sidewalk Sale, July 24th – 27th – stop in the store for great deals and specials. – In store only.

Join us for the Shibui Mix Yarn Party on July 29th from 6-7:30 pm - There is a $10 fee for this event, and space is limited so be sure to register today!

July 30th from 10am – 3pm we’re hosting an American Red Cross Blood Drive at the store. Please sign up in advance, there is limited space available, but walk-ins will also be welcomed!Visit redcrossblood.org or call 1-800-RED CROSS today to schedule an appointment.

Aug. 7-10 - Stitches Midwest in Schaumburg Ill

Stop by and check out current the Classic Elite Yarns Trunk Show.

Right click or CTRL+click and Save As to download the MP3 of this Podcast Subscribe to Ready, Set, Knit! in iTunes Subscribe to the Ready, Set, Knit! Podcast RSS Feed

40th Anniversary Celebrations Round 3!

Monday, July 7th, 2014
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Our Third Quarter of Specialty Anniversary products are available today! We’ve been eagerly anticipating telling you about our Valley Yarns Northfield hand dyed by Malabrigo!

Valley Yarns Northfield hand dyed by Malabrigo, limited quantites! - available exclusively at yarn.com

There are 20 incredible colorways including an exclusive Ruby colorway for our Anniversary.

And we’re so excited about the designs for this quarter!

The Jazerant Set designed by Emma Welford for WEBS 40th Anniversary knit in Valley Yarns Northfield hand dyed by Malabrigo - available exclusively at yarn.com

Our very own Emma Welford, who has modeled all of our Anniversary Garments this year, has designed the fantastic cabled and beaded Jazerant Set.

The Maplewood Cardigan designed by Carol Sulcoski for WEBS 40th Anniversary knit in Valley Yarns Northfield hand dyed by Malabrigo - available exclusively at yarn.com

Carol Sulcoski designed the Maplewood Cardigan for us, an easy and comfortable layering piece with beautiful lace detailing at the hem.

The Cirro Tee designed by Linda Permann for WEBS 40th Anniversary knit in Valley Yarns Northfield hand dyed by Malabrigo - available exclusively at yarn.com

And Linda Permann may have designed the perfect crochet t-shirt with the Cirro Tee, a flexible and lightweight garment with an easy 2 row pattern repeat!

Della-Q Summer Floral Project Bag - available exclusively at yarn.com

Della-Q has done it again with a bright summery print for her latest WEBS exclusive project bag.

There will be three more weaving drafts from long-time friends of WEBS, as well as additional products and patterns. Follow us on FacebookTwitterPinterestGoogle +Instagram, or on Ravelry for all the latest.

Ready, Set, Knit! 363: Kathy talks with Carol Sulcoski

Saturday, July 5th, 2014
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This week Kathy talks with Carol Sulcoski of Black Bunny Fibers about her design for our 40th Anniversary.

3rd qtr sneak peek

Here’s a sneak peak at our 3rd Quarter Anniversary Products – they officially launch on Monday July 7th!

This quarter we have a knit cardigan from Carol, a crochet t-shirt from Linda Permann, and a cable and beaded accessory set from Emma Welford. Be sure to check the website on Monday to see these exciting new designs!

Kathy’s Yarn Picks :

Upcoming Events:

Join us for the Shibui Mix Yarn Party on July 29th from 6-7:30 pm - There is a $10 fee for this event, and space is limited so be sure to register today!

July 30th from 10am – 3pm we’re hosting an American Red Cross Blood Drive at the store. Please sign up in advance, there is limited space available, but walk-ins will also be welcomed!Visit redcrossblood.org or call 1-800-RED CROSS today to schedule an appointment.

Stop by and check out current the Classic Elite Yarns Trunk Show.

Right click or CTRL+click and Save As to download the MP3 of this Podcast Subscribe to Ready, Set, Knit! in iTunes Subscribe to the Ready, Set, Knit! Podcast RSS Feed

What’s the “Coolest” Fiber Choice?

Friday, July 4th, 2014
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Here in Massachusetts, summer has really hit us. Today is forecast to be at least 90 degrees with high humidity and that’s just the kind of weather I really hate. It’s the kind of weather that makes me not even want to knit, especially the project I have on my needles right now, which is an alpaca cardigan for my mother. God bless you, mom, but I can’t look at it.

This weather makes me wonder if weaving is the way to go. A lot of the woven fabric I like the best is in cotton or linen, which are two fibers I really don’t like to knit. However, woven, they look complex, rich, and most of all, light and cool.linen towels by Scott Norris Take for example, Scott Norris’ linen towels, which are works of art that will provide years of service in your kitchen or bathroom — if you can bear to use them for something so pedestrian as drying your hands or your dishes.

Carol Birtwistle has also done some beautiful work with cotton and cotton blends, and she is a true master of twills. These towels are perfect for summer, since they never feel heavy or sticky.cool cotton twill

In a few weeks, Convergence comes to Providence, RI. This national conference is only held every other year, and usually not as close to “home” as Rhode Island is to us. There are going to be some amazing handwovens there, and it really inspires me to finally get serious about learning to weave.

What is your hot-weather solution to the fiber doldrums? Do you like to knit with plant fibers, or do you take a break? Let’s chat in the comments!

Thank You, Again!

Thursday, July 3rd, 2014
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The second quarter of our Anniversary year is coming to a close and we have more wonderful people and companies to thank.

WEBS 40th Anniversary Knit and Crochet Patterns - available exclusively at yarn.com

To Tanis Gray, Kristin Omdahl, and Franklin Habit
Thank you for unique and beautiful designs that showcase our yarn!

Valley Yarns Huntington hand dyed by Lorna's Laces - available exclusively at yarn.com

To Lorna’s Laces,
Thank you for making our yarn shine with your incredible colorways. There are still some skeins left, get some while you can!

WEBS 40th Anniversary specialty products - available exclusively at yarn.com

To Schacht Spindle Company, della Q, and Marcy Vandale,
Thank you for the adding your special products to our celebration.

40th Anniversary weaving drafts - available at yarn.com

To Dena Gartenstein Moses, Virginia West, and Scott Norris,
Thank you for weaving textiles that bring out the best in our fibers.

UMass Fine Arts Center

To The Fine Arts Center on the Campus of UMass Amherst,
Thank you for opening your doors and letting us shoot in some gorgeous spaces.

WEBS 40th Anniversary 3rd Quarter products go on sale July 7, 2014 - available at yarn.com

Next Monday, July 7th, we’ll have all new yarn and patterns to share, don’t miss out!

Dots & Dashes Chenille Scarf designed by Dena Gartenstein Moses

Wednesday, June 25th, 2014
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The 6th of our 40th Anniversary weaving drafts, the Dots & Dashes Chenille Scarf woven in 4 or 6-shafts in our Valley Yarns Rayon Chenille, was designed by Dena Gartenstein Moses.

Dots & Dashes Chenille Scarf in Valley Yarns Rayon Chenille - available exclusively at yarn.com

Valley Yarns Rayon Chenille can be really fun to work with, once you get the hang of it. This scarf remind me of a bowl filled with brightly colored candy. On the loom, it will appear somewhat flat, but the ribbon will pop out and the scarf will get luxuriously soft when washed properly.

Dots & Dashes Chenille Scarf in Valley Yarns Rayon Chenille - available exclusively at yarn.com

A note about working with chenille: Chenille wants to move, stretch and worm, which can make it tricky to work with, but also forgiving. I like using front to back warping and just accepting the gnarls as part of the process, working them out using my sense of humor and as much patience as I can muster. If the warp snarls when beaming, it doesn’t necessarily mean that you’ve done anything wrong. Over time, working it out will get easier. I strongly advise against using a comb to work through your warp. This scarf is easiest woven on six shafts. It can be adjusted to four shafts, although your shed may not be as lovely as usual.