Archive for the ‘Inside WEBS’ Category

Couldn’t Be Any Cuter

Wednesday, July 29th, 2015
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Blue Sky Alpacas Royal Petite Baby Knit Kits available for 6 adorable animals. Read more on the WEBS Blog at blog.yarn.com

Look what arrived in the store from Blue Sky Alpacas! These darlings comprise their new Royal Petite Babies Series. There are six knit kits to choose from including Marcel the Monkey, René the Rhinoceros, Lisette the Lion, and Georgette the Giraffe.

We had to show you how adorable these kits are so we made two store samples: Marthe chose to knit Hector the Hippopotamus and Meg decided on Emilie the Elephant. Marthe found the pattern to be clearly written and fun to knit. Now she wants to knit all of them!

Each kit comes complete: everything you need to make the animal of your choosing — the eyes and stuffing are even included! The yarn used to knit the animals is 100% royal alpaca which is the finest grade of alpaca fiber available, making them irresistibly soft. Please stop in soon to see how wonderful these animals are–I bet you’ll be inspired to knit at least one of your own!

Renovations at WEBS Retail Store

Tuesday, July 14th, 2015
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Restroom rennovations begin July 22, please plan extra stops before you arrive. Read more on the WEBS Blog - blog.yarn.com

Beginning July 22, and running into the first week of August, we will be renovating the restrooms at our Northampton Retail Store. While we’d love to be able to do this with as little interruption to accessibility as possible there may be times when only one restroom is available to both our customers and staff. Please plan extra stops into your trips to visit us during that time to help us all keep the lines short.

Restroom rennovations begin July 22, please plan extra stops before you arrive. Read more on the WEBS Blog - blog.yarn.com

 

Are you ready to spin? It’s Tour de Fleece time!

Monday, June 29th, 2015
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Team WEBS Tour de Fleece spinning challenge, read more on the WEBS Blog - blog.yarn.com

Attention Spinners! Team WEBS Tour de Fleece 2015 registration is now open! If you’ve never heard of the Tour de Fleece, it’s a Ravelry spin-along that shadows the Tour de France bike race during the month of July. This is not a competition! It’s a chance to come together with other spinners, set personal challenges for yourself but, most importantly, have fun.  If you don’t have a consistent spinning habit, the Tour is a great incentive to spin on a regular basis for a month.  You’re welcome to use wheels and/or spindles and there will be prizes at the end of the Tour.  If you’d like to join us, please pop over to the All Things WEBS group on Ravelry and let us know you’re participating by this Friday, July 3.

Here are some guidelines, not rules,  for those of you just joining in this year – and a refresher for returning spinners:

  • Try to spin every day that the Tour is riding, July 4-26. There are days of rest, July 13th and 21st, so feel free to take those days off.
  • There are challenge days, when the riders are climbing. Give yourself a challenge on those days by spinning a new fiber or try a new spinning style, but save your biggest challenges for the second climbing stage, like when they tackle Alpe d’Huez on July 25th  – seriously LOOK at the climb up that mountain! See the full route here.
    • Climbing stages 10 -12 from July 14, to 16
    • Climbing stages 17-20 from July 22, to 25
  • Celebrate as you go with the colors you wear.
    • Wear Green: green is for sprinters, if you’ve been spinning FAST this color is for you!
    • Wear Polka-dots: dots are for climbing so break them out whenever you’re taking on a challenge!
    • Wear White: white is for rookies so this is the color for you if this is your first Tour!
    • Wear Yellow: the leaders wear the Maillot jauneor Yellow Jersey, following each stage of the race, so wear it whenever you feel particularly successful. And be sure to wear it on July 26th to announce your victory in completing the Tour!

The Tour runs Saturday July 4th through Sunday July 26th, this year. And don’t worry about how much you have to do to participate! There is no minimum, or maximum amount of fiber you need to spin through. You don’t have to spin every day and you don’t even have to measure what you DO spin. The whole idea is just to get you spinning and to have fun with it! However we will be announcing some prizes on July 1st and there will be specific minimums or types of fibers and yarns you’ll need to spin to win. Keep an eye on the Ravelry group for specifics!

I’ll be spinning from my stash which includes Hello Yarn club fiber, some Spunky Eclectic fiber, some great stuff from Into the Whirled, and maybe something from Abstract Fibers or Frabjous Fibers! What will you be spinning and what will you challenge yourself with?

It Takes a Team

Thursday, June 25th, 2015
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A few members of our store staff got together to participate in the 2015 Massachusetts Sheep and Woolcraft Fair Fleece to Shawl competition and they won! Strong collaboration and preparation before the event, creativity, communication and a bit of improvisation made the difference.

Ashley spun the warp (almost 800 yards of Abstract Fiber 2-Tone Blue Faced Leicester plied with Ashland Bay Mixed Blue Face Leicester); Mary warped our Norwood loom, store staff members created the team name, (Ply of the Tiger) and Carreen made team shirts for competition day.

WEBS staff members, "Team Ply of the Tiger" Compete in the Fleece to Shawl competition, more on the WEBS Blog - blog.yarn.com

On the competition day, the process of creating the shawl ran smoothly, with Mary (fighting a bad cold) carding the fleece; Meg and Ashley spinning singles for the weft; and Carreen plying the singles together to create the weft. Everyone was using their favorite spinning wheel, the Lendrum DT Complete.  Then it was Mary’s turn to start the weaving using a draft that WEBS founder, Barbara Elkins, created just for this event.  The team worked feverishly to make the deadline, while answering the many questions that curious onlookers asked throughout the afternoon.  Things were going swimmingly until the loom’s apron rods separated with 2″ left to weave!  Ashley held the loom in place until the weaving was complete. With minutes to spare, the team made fringe for the shawl and then time was up!

WEBS staff members, "Team Ply of the Tiger" and their winning shawl, more on the WEBS Blog - blog.yarn.com

In the end, the team won the event with a fabulous shawl, blue ribbons, swollen hands and blisters, and, best of all,  enthusiasm to do it all over again.  They’ve decided to enter the Sheep to Shawl competition at the New York State Sheep and Wool Festival in October!

The winning shawl is on display in the store–please stop by to see our staff’s beautiful work.

And if you’d like to share WEBS spinning adventures, please sign up for the Ravelry Tour de Fleece event beginning July 4.  See our Ravelry WEBS forum post to sign up.

Keep on spinning…

 

Genius is Everywhere

Friday, June 19th, 2015
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Hey! If you stop by the store through June 29, you’ll see our resident genius designer Emma Welford’s work in a trunk show of some of her many beautiful designs. Emma has worked at WEBS for a few years, as our Purchasing Coordinator and now in the store. She may have helped you pick out yarn or you may have stopped by our Thursday evening Drop-In and had her show you how to pick up stitches or do a decrease.

The Coronation Tank and more designs by Emma Welford on the WEBS Blog - blog.yarn.com

If you check out our website, you’ll see Emma’s new ebook of patterns, “Let Them Knit Cake,” which was released in early spring. It contains what I think is the most beautiful tank ever, the Coronation Tank, knit in Malabrigo Arroyo. The combination of color and texture (the cables making a shapely trim waist and the bright color announcing “summer’s here!” are irresistable. Plus–it’s a tank! It’ll take maybe a week to knit.

Elektrocute and more designs by Emma Welford on the WEBS Blog - blog.yarn.com

All of Emma’s designs are thoughtful and make me want to abandon everything I have on the needles to start her garments. Just when I think I’ve got her figured out (she designs great textural sweaters!) she comes up with something like Elektrocute, a cowl with the most shocking colorwork that looks like it’s not only doable but imperative that it be made.

Check her out on Ravelry, on her blog, and please come to the store to see her trunk show. You’ll be inspired and awed.

What to Wear This Summer

Wednesday, May 13th, 2015
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If you’ve been to the store within the last month, you’ve seen many new warm weather store samples. For those of you who haven’t visited lately, I want to share some of these spring and summer knits with you. Store employees are modelling their favorite garments of the season.

Spring and Summer knits at WEBS, read more on the WEBS Blog -  blog.yarn.com

Here’s Alyssa modeling the Irokata Tee knit in Plymouth Linaza. This yarn is new this season and contains alpaca, linen and tencel, creating a sultry fabric that drapes with ease. This tunic features thoughtful details and Alyssa likes the shaping that flatters all body types.

Spring and Summer knits at WEBS - Irokata Tee in Plymouth Linaza, read more on the WEBS Blog -  blog.yarn.com

Our Education Manager Amy (formerly a store employee) is rocking the ever-popular Featherweight Cardigan. Our version is knit with Fibre Co. Meadow, a pleasing blend of merino, baby llama, silk and linen which we carry in 15 colorways. The combination of these fibers make the perfect cover up in overly air conditioned restaurants and theaters.

Spring and Summer knits at WEBS - Featherweight Cardigan in Fibre Co. Meadow, read more on the WEBS Blog -  blog.yarn.com

Meg is wearing a sleeveless top  in Sesia Kreo. This 100% cotton yarn is requires a close up look. It’s chainette-constructed, meaning there are lots of tiny strands worked into a tube, which gives Kreo a weightlessness that most cottons can’t boast about. And the strands are subtly dyed which provides the yarn with a warm depth of tone. Meg says Sesia is next-to-the skin soft and easy to wear with a pair of jeans. She also loves the range of colors available.

Spring and Summer knits at WEBS -Women's Shell in Sesia Kreo, read more on the WEBS Blog -  blog.yarn.com

One of our Assistant Managers, Bonnie, has fallen for Tahki’s Philadelphia Duster in their popular yarn Ripple. The thick and thin texture of this 100% cotton yarn gives the garment a light, airy texture, making a perfect coverup for cool evenings. Bonnie loves the mid-thigh length and the short sleeves.

Spring and Summer knits at WEBS -The Philadelphia Duster in Tahki Yarns Ripple, read more on the WEBS Blog -  blog.yarn.com

This next top has become the the most-admired sample in the store.  Worn by our second Assistant Manager Beth, Shibui’s Slope is flattering, stylish and timeless all at the same time. Shown in Shibui Twig, this cool and comfortable shell is perfect over a t-shirt, tank or camisole. Beth says she’d wear it with jeans and flats or dress it up with a skirt and heels. Either way, this beauty is sure to become a warm weather go-to garment.

Spring and Summer knits at WEBS -Slope in Shibui Twig, read more on the WEBS Blog -  blog.yarn.com

Michele sports another Shibui favorite. Shibui Square is knit with a combination of Shibui yarns — Linen and Cima worked together. The side panel is an unexpected detail in this gorgeous piece. Michele loves the drape and lightness the fabric and says wearing this with jeans make the perfect pairing.

Spring and Summer knits at WEBS -Square in Shibui Linen and Cima, read more on the WEBS Blog -  blog.yarn.com

So, what will you choose to enliven your summer wardrobe? I’ve got my eye on the Sesia Kreo sleeveless top and the Irokata Tee. And maybe Shibui Slope. Possibly Shibui Square. I’m not sure. But I do know that there’s not enough time in the day to knit all the things I like!

If you’re traveling anywhere up or down the East Coast, WEBS is on your way! Please come see us soon to check out what’s new.

Knit away!

Tent Sale in just 4 days!

Tuesday, May 12th, 2015
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We’ve been getting ready for weeks but like an ant’s nest that’s been kicked, all that activity has been below the surface until now! The Tent is going up and we’ll start filling it for you early on Saturday morning. Get here early for some of the best deals and to check out all the local vendors and shepherds at our Annual Fleece Market! And don’t forget that all of the great deals on the May Anniversary Sale Yarns will still be in effect as well as 20% off all in-stock spinning wheels and spinning supplies during Tent Sale. Will this be the year you FINALLY get to WEBS’ Tent Sale? or will this be your 14th visit? How many times have you made it?

The Annual Tent Sale at WEBS - America's Yarn Store, May 16th and 17th 2015. Will you be there? more info at yarn.com

What we’re working on…and a little something extra

Thursday, April 30th, 2015
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In the store, customers sometimes ask us if we knit.  Rest assured, every member of WEBS store staff knits well and has other craft-y pursuits as well–from crochet, weaving and spinning to tatting and embroidery. And our love of yarn extends well into our non-work hours. Today, I’d like to show off some of our WIPs so you can see what we like to work on in our free time.

WEBS Store Staff Projects Spring 2015 - read more on the WEBS Blog - blog.yarn.com

First up is a gorgeous linen stitch scarf that Carreen’s been knitting.  The yarn, Misti Hand Paint Sock, comes in a wide array of vibrant colors: Carreen chose #57 polar sunset, #56 edible bright, and #58 corked for her version.  She opted to treat the fringe the way weavers do by using a fringe twister, rather than simply leaving the ends loose.  The best part is there’s no real pattern for this scarf–once you find 2-3 colors that inspire you, cast on the number of stitches that will give you the length you want and cast on.  Knit until the scarf is as wide as you’d like and bind off. That’s it!

Mary is currently enrolled in our popular Top Down Sweater from Measurements class and here is her beautiful cardigan knit in the ever-popular Valley Goshen.  Mary wanted a summer sweater in a vibrant color and this project fits the bill.  Although she’s an experienced knitter, she learned a few more tricks in this class–advanced shaping techniques for a flattering fit and designing that fancy, cabled raglan shaping–a design detail that brings an added layer of sophistication to a classic shape.

Marthe is almost finished with a baby blanket she plans to give to a friend.  She decided on Valley pattern #567, the Maria Baby Blanket, and chose Berroco’s Modern Cotton in a gender-neutral color, #1652 Matunuk.  Marthe knit the 8″ x 8″ blocks and sewed them together by working through the back loops of the bound-off stitches which gives the blanket a professional finish. Two more squares to finish and Marthe will be ready to gift a lucky baby with this heirloom.

And finally, Ashley is working on a new shawl which promises to be a beauty.  She’s using a slightly larger needle size to open up the fabric.  Ashley says, “I love how the designer [Steven West] uses geometry and the contrasts of color in such striking ways in his designs.” She can’t wait to see the finished result and we can’t either!

Pretty impressive, eh? We’re are fortunate to have such a talented, smart group of folks here in the store.  Please take advantage of our knowledge and skill when you’re looking for your next project.  We’re here to help!

Jo Sharp yarns available in the US at yarn.com - read more on the WEBS Blog at blog.yarn.com

And now the little something extra…If you haven’t already heard, Jo Sharp yarns and patterns are available after too long of an absence on the American yarn scene.  The best news is that WEBS is the only store in the US that you can buy these sumptuous yarns and classic but stylish patterns. If you’re a long-time knitter, you know what a big deal this is.  If you’re a new-ish knitter, take the time to explore the world of Jo Sharp. You’ll be as excited as we are to have these yarns at WEBS.

Thanks for reading and knit on…

Craft and Social Media, Part II

Friday, April 24th, 2015
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Crafting and social media go hand-in-hand. In my last post, I explored the tip of the social media iceberg with Ravelry and Facebook, the two most-watched avenues. Today, let’s wander through a few others that are tailor-made for looking at yarn and it’s by-products.

Follow WEBS Yarn Store on Pinterest - read more on the WEBS Blog at blog.yarn.com

Pinterest is my favorite thing of all time. Absolutely the best way to lose an hour or two, so I have to ration my time on it carefully. WEBS’ Pinterest page is filled to the brim with all kinds of boards…crochet, UFO’s, knitting inspiration, tips and techniques, just to name a few. And because our E-Commerce Manager, Dena, is in charge of the content, and I know that she loves movies as much as I do, I noticed a “Yarnspotting in the Movies” board, where you can find some fun shots of movie stars knitting. If you follow a board’s link, you can often go down another rabbit hole of fiber fun, like playing fiber-hopscotch.

Follow @websyarn on Twitter - read more on the WEBS Blog at blog.yarn.com

Twitter is a little less visual, but more up-to-the-minute, and the WEBS Twitter feed is filled with quick tweets from designers, our store staff, fiber bloggers, and even some news sources that have nothing to do with yarn! We always put Steve’s Deal of the Day on Twitter and we usually announce some surprise sales and giveaways there as well. It’s worth a look every day to see if you’re missing any bargains, or just a fun shout-out from The Yarn Harlot.

Follow @websyarn on Instagram - read more on the WEBS Blog at blog.yarn.com

Instagram is a newcomer, and a fast-growing source of luxurious fiber porn. We post lots of store pictures, so you can see the goings-on of our store staff, and our customers. Take a peek at our warehouse in real time–you’ll see yarn going in and yarn coming out! We’ll often post some “slice-of-life” photos as well, like Assistant Store Manager Bonnie’s dog Fiona, a fixture in our store for a few months while she healed from a broken leg. Check out Fiona shopping! We’ll always post some fun stuff from our store events and trunk shows so it feels like you’re a local customer, even if you live in another time zone.

Have any of you dipped a toe into these sites? What are your favorite follow-ees? Let us know!

A New Spin on Things

Wednesday, April 15th, 2015
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The new Spinning Area at WEBS retail store in Northampton MA, chock full of color and fiber! read more at blog.yarn.com

As the craft of spinning continues to grow in popularity, we wanted to re-vamp our existing space into a beautiful, welcoming area in the store. And we’ve done just that. It’s our hope that experienced spinners and beginners alike will visit us to explore our enticing fibers on offer from workhorses like Blue Faced Leiceister and Romney to more luxurious blends like Frog Tree Meriboo Top (which comes in 10 shades and is on closeout for $2.29 per ounce, by the way). There’s an open space to try out a variety of wheels from Schacht’s popular Ladybug and elegant Matchless to the staff favorite, the Lendrum DT Complete. The back wall features an array of eye-popping color which is sure to inspire lots of new spinning projects! We’ve had such fun putting this new space together, and as the sole member of the store management team who does not (yet) spin, I have definitely caught the bug! Next time you visit the store, please stop by our new spinning area – even if you’re not (yet) a spinner, you’ll likely find yourself enticed to learn – ask me how I know…