Archive for the ‘Events’ Category

Knit Custom Fitted Socks with Andi Smith

Monday, September 19th, 2011
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On October 18th, we are excited to welcome some of the designers from Cooperative Press to the store.  Shannon Okey, Andi Smith and Alasdair Post-Quinn will be signing books, showing garments and answering questions from 11am – 1pm in the store.  Then, Andi and Shannon will shift gears to teach two great classes, “Big Foot Knits” and “Sewing Patterns for Knitting“.  It is going to be an exciting day in the store!

We recently chatted with Andi Smith about her class and her upcoming book.

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Andi, tell us a bit about yourself.

I grew up in South Yorkshire surrounded by generations of crafters, knitters and gardeners. The process of making something from nothing, be it a Fair Isle sweater from a few balls of wool or a patch of vegetables from a handful of seeds, this was an intrinsic part of my childhood. My mum taught me at an early age to find my own answers, that discovery is an integral part of any creative process. I think that’s why I design. I love discovering how things work, how to manipulate elements to get the desired effect, to learn from mistakes and love the process.

What is your favorite aspect of knitting?

I’m definitely a process knitter. The rhythmic motion of physically creating stitches is sheer joy! Having those individual stitches become something is also greatly pleasing.

Tell us about the inspiration for your upcoming book, Big Foot Knits 

The whole thing started out as a conversation, which led to emails and then into an essay and finally into a book. My goal throughout the book has been to encourage knitters to create their own custom fit socks, breaking down all aspects of sock design and showing how, through simple math, you can make it all your own. The patterns in the second half of the book are all specifically designed to be changed. I was fortunate to have some incredible yarns to work with to showcase the patterns, and can’t wait for the knit-alongs to start so that I can knit them all again!

 

You are going to be teaching a class at WEBS on October 18th! What can a student expect from your class?

I’ll run through the basics of sock design and together we will create an individual, well-fitting sock pattern for every student. It’s a fairly fast-paced class, but there are lots of hand-outs and worksheets to keep it all fresh in your memory.

What is your favorite thing about teaching?

That’s an easy one! It’s that moment after the “lightbulb” moment. You know the one, when you see that someone really “gets” what you’re saying, and then they pause, pause for a second or two more and then say, “what if we took that and did this to it?” I LOVE THAT! I’m all about people finding their own way to make things work! It’s such a thrill to see it in action, to know you’ve had a part in expanding horizons and then seeing those horizons multiply! Gets me every time.

Are you a multi-crafter? Do you have any other craft passions?

I am indeed! Crochet, sewing, embroidery, a little crazy quilting when the mood strikes. I really enjoy just seeing where the craft takes me. Taking that blank canvas and seeing where it takes me – that’s the joy! I would desperately like to be able to draw and paint and transfer what I see with my eyes to paper, but I have a hard time drawing a straight line with a pencil and ruler, so I have to content myself with other mediums. There’s always hope though…

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Our thanks to Andi Smith for taking some time to answer our questions!  You can register for this fun custom-fit sock class here, and find out more about the book signing event here.

Craft Activism Event

Wednesday, September 14th, 2011
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Join us on October 6th for an event celebrating the release of the book Craft Activism: People, Ideas, and Projects from the New Community of Handmade and How You Can Join In

Gale Zucker, an amazing photographer (and teacher of our recent Photographing Your Fiber and Finished Objects classes) will join us from 6pm – 7:30pm for a discussion of the book, a slide show and a trunk show.

This event is free!  But we ask that you register by calling or emailing Customer Service so that we can be sure we have enough chairs and snacks.   You can find all of the info you need on our website.

The Buzz at WEBS – September 9, 2011

Friday, September 9th, 2011
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This week the staff at WEBS is buzzing about…

1. Malabrigo Twist – The drop in temperatures has got me thinking about the two perennially unfinished sweaters I have in my stash shelf, especially the one in Malabrigo Twist. The yarn is so luxurious: perfectly soft, bouncy, and beautifully dyed, and I love the halo it gets as it wears. There is no real reason that I haven’t finished this sweater, but I think this is its year – I can’t wait to be able to take advantage of this yarn’s unparalleled coziness on the upcoming crisp fall days! > Elisabeth P.

2. 55 Christmas Balls to Knit – I know it’s a little early to be thinking about Christmas, but I am so excited for this book! The first book of knitting patterns by Norwegian knitwear designers Arne & Carlos is a beautiful (and funny) collection of traditional Nordic style patterns. I also like the idea of doing ornaments because they will make quick, fun, simple projects! My goal is to make a different ornament for my whole family by the big day. > Greta S. (Also don’t miss these fun commercials of Arne & Carlos.)

3. Erin Lane Bags Needle Cases – I love color and print, especially together, so I had to snag an Erin Lane needle case for myself as soon as they arrived! The Double Duty needle case has two rows to hold interchangeable needle tips, with additional pockets for cords and notions. I managed to squeeze my fixed circulars into the extra pockets so my entire circular collection is now in one handy case. The ladies at Erin Lane rotate through fabrics–which means if you see one you like, get it before it’s gone! > Emma W. (Note: Due to the rotation of fabrics, we are only available to offer these in our store. Stop by and check them out.)

4. Mountain Street Arts Care Labels – These are a must have finishing touch for any project. When you give a hand made gift, you want it to last. These labels take the pressure off the recipient to remember how they’re supposed to clean it! That beautiful striped wool hat won’t have to be accidentally felted this winter if it has a “Hand Wash” label sewn on. They’re great to remind yourself how to care for your own finished projects too. > Grace H.

5. I am so excited about our first ever Valley Yarns Trunk Show!  Join us on Thursday, September 15th from 6-8pm for an evening with our Valley Yarns Designer Kirsten Hipsky. Kirsten will highlight our Fall 2011 Collection and share her design process & inspiration. Garments will be on hand to try and as always, light refreshments will be served! > Kathy  E.

Pilgrimage to Portland

Wednesday, July 27th, 2011
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Hi Everyone

I am writing this post as I jet across the country to Portland, OR for Sock Summit 2011. I can’t believe two years has passed since the first Sock Summit.

I will be tweeting and such from the show all week and will give you all a full report when I am back next week.

For those of you also making the pilgrimage, here’s some info:

*We can be found in booths 502-508. This is a smaller set-up than we did last time and much smaller than our Stitches set-up but we will be packed with awesome sock yarns, needles, accessories and more! We’ll even have some exclusive items

*We’re planning on lots of fun for everyone. When you visit our booth you’ll have the opportunity to play Sock Summit Plinko and win a cool prize, you can show off your hand knit socks and join our “Who Are You Wearing” wall of fame and you can possibly win a cool prize pack by tweeting about us during the show!

*Be sure to stop by. I’ll be joined at the show by Kirsten our Valley Yarns Designer, Cara our Assistant Store Manager and Tina our Education Manager

See you in Portland!

Kathy

Typos courtesy of my iPad

The Buzz at WEBS – July 15, 2011

Friday, July 15th, 2011
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This week the staff is buzzing about…

1. Great Adirondack Hot Surprise – A great yarn for scarves, Hot Surprise is a series of different hand dyed yarns tied together including some glitz!  You all know I love the sparkly yarns. The colors are gorgeous! > Kathy E

2. Prism Delicato Layers – A great choice for knitting a drapey summer shawl or weaving a nuanced stole. Just as the name suggests it is delicately layered with color and 100% handdyed tencel. Just breathtaking. (Steve says it’s a 6/2 tencel for all those tempted weavers out there!) > Cara S.

3. Sock Knitting Master Class by Ann Budd – There’s lots of excitement for this book! I bought it the day it came in, brought it home, leafed through it and then put the DVD in! Can’t wait to cast on with my new favorite sock yarn, Smooshy with Cashmere! The DVD is such a nice surprise at the back of the book, and very informative. Should be lots of fun working my way through each pattern. And we can’t forget to mention that Melissa Morgan-Oakes has a pattern in there also. So many different techniques, so many pretty pictures:) > Karen M.

4. Never Not Knitting Cedar Leaf Shawlette by Alana Dakos – Have I mentioned this week how much in love I am with her patterns? She is innovative, stylish and uses great yarns! We borrowed Greta’s shawlette to show off in the store. Each one of these patterns is eye candy, I can’t choose a favorite! > Cara S.

5. New England Weavers Seminar – It’s here! New England Weavers Seminar, the biennial conference of all the weaving guilds in New England, meets at Smith College from July 14 through noon,
July 17. Many events are open to the public, including the Special Exhibit (Arts Lounge), Static Fashion Show, Vendors (Student Center), including Webs, the Faculty Exhibit and the Gallery Show (Neilson Library Periodical Room, 2nd floor). The NEWS Brochure can be downloaded at www.newenglandweaversseminar.com. Don’t miss it! > Barbara E.

6. Knitting from the Top by Barbara G. Walker – The book that started it all for me and many other designers. It’s not a pattern book, it’s really teaching you how to design while
illuminating how all sorts of knitted shapes are related. > Kirsten H.

Graduation

Saturday, July 9th, 2011
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Recently, we added another group of talented knitters to our growing line-up of graduates of the Expert Knitter Certification Program!  The evening of celebration was wonderful and the garments designed by each program member are inspirational.

Some of the amazing details:

Congratulations to all of the graduates! We are so proud of all of your hard work, and in awe of your creations!

Thanks, also, to all of the current program members, friends and family of the graduates, store staff and mentors who were able to join us for the graduation ceremony.  You helped to make graduation a splendid event!

Time to Hop & Shop

Thursday, June 23rd, 2011
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Hi Everyone

Tomorrow is the start of the I-91 Shop Hop which runs through Sunday, June 26th!  This event has been months in the planning and the last weekend in June has seemed so far away but it’s finally here!  This is the first Shop Hop and we’re anxious with anticipation!

shophop_FINAL

Here are the details you need to know:

1.  There are 11 shops participating in the Hop.  The 12th store, Knit or Dye in Brattleboro, VT had to bow out due to the arrival of a new, wee knitter.  A list of the shops can be found on our Ravlery page or Facebook page.

2.  To participate, you need to purchase a Passport for $5.00 at any of the shops.  On the back each shop has a place to “stamp” your passport to prove you’ve been there.

3.  If you get to all 11 shops, the final shop will take your back panel and enter you into our Grand Prize Drawing!  The Grand Prize includes a ton of yarn, books, patterns, etc from our faboo suppliers but it also includes a $100 gift certificate FROM EACH SHOP!  That is $1100 in total and that’s a lot of yarn, books & tools!!

4.  Each shop will be having a daily drawing as well for some great gift baskets full of yarn, books, tools, etc.

5.  Some shops are doing demos, some will provide snacks and other fun things.  All shops will have goodie bags to give out.

It should be a super fun weekend and we hope to see many of you hopping into WEBS!

Enjoy!

Kathy

Show #224: Interview with Meta Nisbet

Saturday, June 18th, 2011
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Play Now:

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Steve’s Yarn Picks

Guest: Meta Nisbet, owner of Metaphor Yarns in Shelburne, MA. She is also one of the founders of the I-91 Shop Hop. Meta talks about her shop, how it got started, and what you can find there as well as in the Shelburne area. You don’t want to miss out on this shop on the Shop Hop. You’ll find yarns from local farms as well as commercial yarns.

The Shop Hop is in one week! June 24th-June 26th. At Metaphor Yarns, you’ll find a number of demonstrations over the weekend. They’re hoping to put a tent on the front lawn to show off yarn basket making, two sleeves at once, painting on silk, I-cord, dyeing, and spinning. They will go on throughout the weekend. Metaphor Yarns is also launching a new vest kit (vests are their specialty).

Make sure you stop by, shop, and get your passport stamped!

Valley Yarns Preview with Kirsten Hipsky

Some crocheted goodies:
#400 October Mountain Cardigan – a lovely lacy crocheted cardi in 2/14 by Sara
#384 Golden Baby Blanket – Out of Goshen, has both knitting and crochet in the same project.

Some beautiful knitted sweaters:
#396 Masonic Street Cardigan – a stunning reknit in Colrain, from the classic Green Street Cardigan. I think it worked out really well.
#380 Boothbay Lace Pullover – a sideways, one-piece lace pullover in Southwick, ribby and flattering

Some unexpected knockout accessories:
#403 Jambalaya Shawl – I sort of just knit it on a lark, wasn’t sure it would even have a place in the catalog

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Polly Macc

Friday, June 10th, 2011
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WEBS is lucky enough to host a trunk show from Polly Macc designs through the end of next week.  We just wanted to send you a little sneak preview and let you know what all the customers have been excited about!

Baby knits seem to be on everyone’s mind. The most sought after pattern is the Brother/Sister Infant sweaters. These tiny sweaters are knit in a sock weight yarn. In an ideal world I would use Prism Merino Mia Layers, in a practical world I would use Berroco Sox.

Next is the Children’s size Brother/Sister sweaters. I would knit this DK weight sweater in either Dream in Color Everlasting 12 ply DK (fancy) or Plymouth Happy Feet DK (practical).

While we’re on the subject of babies I couldn’t resist adding the teeny-tiny Soft Preemie hats. These little guys are knit in two colors of Debbie Bliss Baby Cashmerino, which I fully support. How adorable!

But don’t take my word for it, come take a look at these yourself!

Cara

Show #222: Interview with Margaret from Green Mountain Spinnery

Saturday, June 4th, 2011
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Guest: Margaret from Green Mountain Spinnery, one of the stops on the I-91 Shop Hop. Make sure you don’t miss out on this stop in Putney, VT. It’s a unique experience because all of the yarn they sell is made at their mill in Putney. They are in their 30th year of producing yarns. You’ll also get a chance to see how the yarns are made. All of the yarns are spun in Putney and all of the fibers are grown in the United States, with the focus on New England fibers. At the shop you’ll also find great mill ends and experimental yarns, which are always fun to pick up!

Steve’s Yarn Picks

History of WEBS

Barbara’s “little lie” was that she wasn’t planning on leaving, even though she said she would. It has worked out wonderfully because she has been able to travel, design, weave, and work with our long-time weaving customers.

We’ve gone from three computers to too many to count! We’ve also gone from an informational website to one you can place orders from. No more cutting samples – we have four knitting catalogs and a couple weaving catalogs. The building has morphed quite a bit as well!

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