April 4th, 2014

Thank You

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With the first quarter of 2014 is coming to a close we wanted to take a moment to thank some of the people that have made it such a success.

To Amy Herzog, Melissa LaBarre and Doris Chan,
Thank you for your creative vision, and for turning our yarns into works of wearable art.

To Madelinetosh,
Thank you for sharing your gorgeous colors with us.

(If you haven’t yet gotten any, there are just a few skeins left of our 40th Anniversary Valley Superwash DK hand dyed by Madelinetosh. When they’re gone, they’re gone!)

To Della Q,
Thank you for the perfect project bag.

(There are just a few of these limited edition bags left. Get one while you can!)

To Barbara Elkins, Judie Yamamoto, and Carol Birtwistle,
Thank you for creating amazing textiles with our yarns.

To Norah Gaughan and the Berroco team,
Thank you for breathing new life into some classic Berroco designs, just for us.

To Stamell Stringed Instruments,
Thank you for letting us come home one more time, and for being a beautiful location for photography.

(The house that Stamell’s occupies is the former home of WEBS)

And thanks to You, our customers,
You have made the start of our 40th Anniversary year just amazing. Thanks for being here with us.

We’ve got so much more to share with you! Our second round of celebrations launch next Monday, April 7th. More yarn, more designs, and more specialty products!

April 1st, 2014

It’s Finally Here – Our Anniversary Sale!

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WEBS Anniversary Sale All April and MayIt’s April 1st, and many of you know what that means! No, don’t worry, we won’t be playing a practical joke on you! (Though you may want to keep your wits about you in case someone else decides to.) It is the start of our Anniversary Sale. This year, we’re celebrating our 40th Anniversary and you’ll find some amazing things in the sale.

If you haven’t shopped our Anniversary Sale before, it is a unique opportunity to save on our regular-priced yarns for the entire month of April. Then, once May 1st hits, we have a whole new collection of wonderful yarns at great sale prices.

As always, we have Cascade 220, Cascade 220 Superwash, and Plymouth Encore on sale for both the month of April and the month of May. This year, we’re super excited to have added a fourth yarn that will be on sale for both months – Classic Elite Color by Kristin. This blend of wool, alpaca, and mohair comes in a lovely range of colors chosen by our friend, Kristin Nicholas.

Are you looking to add some needles or crochet hooks to the stash you already have? We have great needles and sets from Knitter’s Pride, Kollage, and Colonial Needle Company in our sale. (I know someone who would appreciate the Knitter’s Pride Nova Special Interchangeable Circular Set.) You can view everything that is on sale here.

You don’t want to miss out on these savings. It’s a great time to stock up on yarns that you’ll need for future projects. I might be starting to think about gifts I may want to give in the near (and far) future and planning ahead.

What’s on your must-buy list this month?

March 31st, 2014

Valley Yarns featured in Knit Simple

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The Spring/ Summer 2014 issue of Knit Simple is out and features 2 great designs with Valley Yarns Amherst and Longmeadow.

The feather-and-fan lace gently scallops the bottom edge of this charming capelet, while dotted ribbing adds flattering vertical lines. Knit with just 4 balls of Amherst this is a quick and inexpensive project to brighten your spring wardrobe. Which color will you choose?

To work this charming striped blanket, start at the center and knit your way out. Increases form symmetrical diagonal lines, while punchy colors and super-soft yarn make it a perfect companion for your favorite tot.  With almost 20 colors of Longmeadow to choose from you can pick 6 of your favorites for endless color combinations.
March 29th, 2014

Ready, Set, Knit! 350: Kathy talks with Norah Gaughan

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This week Kathy talks with Norah about her newest pattern collection, Norah Gaughan Vol.14, the Best of Berroco for WEBS special collection (you can read more about the E-book here) Some of her favorite designs and stepping down from the Design Director position at Berroco.

Anniversary Sale! Starts next Tuesday April 1! No April Fools jokes here! with over 40 yarns on sale, needles, hooks, spinning fiber, and weaving fibers we’ve got something for almost everyone. Watch Steve preview the sale!

Steve’s Yarn Picks From the Anniversary Sale!:

  • Plymouth Encore at $4.19
  • Cascade 220 at $5.59
  • 220 Superwash at $7.39
  • Hand dyers for the first time!
  • Prism Delicato at $20.99
  • Lorna’s Laces Solemate at $18.19
  • Zen Yarn Garden Serenity DK at $22.39
  • Put these into your wishlist now!

Reminder:

Be sure to stop into the store and see all the new Spring garment models! And don’t miss the Classic Elite Yarns Trunk shows.

Upcoming Events:

The Boston Marathon runs on April 21st and you can help the Boston Marathon Scarf Project. They are working towards  providing a scarf for each participant in the marathon this year. Check out the Ravelry group for more details on how to help!

Boston Strong Hat pattern from designer Lisa McFetridge is a colorwork hat design featuring the words “Boston Strong” and the Boston Skyline. Lisa has included additional charts so you have options to really make this hat your own. All proceeds from the sale of this cap pattern will go to OneFundBoston to help the victims.

Join the KNIT-IN with Lisa McFetridge, designer of the Boston Strong Hat, Rebecca Lane of “Blankies for Boston” & the Old South Knitters/Crocheters Saturday April 5, 2014 2-4 pm at the Old South Church in Boston – the church at the Finish Line 645 Boylston Street, Boston – at the Copley T

Have you knit a Boston Strong Hat or a Blanket to donate to a survivor? Do you have a scarf to drop off for the Boston Marathon Scarf Project? You are cordially invited to bring your handcrafted treasures to Old South Church …stay and knit, meet and exchange stories with fellow crafters. If you haven’t begun a hat, scarf or blanket (or two or three), there is still time. A special Boston Strong Hat in progress will be there. Anyone dropping off a hat, scarf or blanket is invited to add a stitch or two to the hat and place their signature on the roll. Truly a group project, this hat will find a special home in the future.

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
March 28th, 2014

Is Summer Knitting An Oxymoron?

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While our store may be a little less crowded in the summertime, it’s not because our customers aren’t knitting. Conventional wisdom dictates that nobody wants to be working with wool in the summertime, and hauling a sweater’s worth off to the beach is an invitation for a bottle of sunscreen to spontaneously open up onto your cabled cowl. But I personally knit all year ’round, and with the plethora of lightweight cotton and natural blend yarns there are to choose from, summer knitting doesn’t have to mean wool sweaters. As I looked through the Sale Flyer for the WEBS Anniversary Sale, I found a lot of options for summer shawls (when there’s too much air-conditioning) or light, airy sweaters to throw around your shoulders as you head off for ice cream with the family.

DELICATOPR.PEONY.zoom.1Prism Delicato Layers, made from Tencel, is a lovely, silky smooth yarn that I would use for any lacy pattern. The stitches would stand out clearly and any lace pattern would be beautifully showcased. Regularly this yarn sells for $30 per 630 yard skein, but for the month of April, (while we have it in stock!) it’ll be available for $20.99.

Sport and DK weight yarns lend themselves to lighter garments in openwork patterns, and I couldn’tMAGNOLIACL.5449.zoom.1 find anything nicer than Classic Elite Magnolia. Classic Elite regularly does staff meetings to showcase their new season’s garments and yarns, and when I saw the variety of knitwear one could make with Magnolia, I was sold. The blend of merino and silk has a sheen that makes anything you knit or crochet look like it was crafted by a master knitter. The store price is $10.95, but sale price is just $7.69 for a 120 yard ball. Incredible!

And finally, a truly luxurious yarn that has a really interesting nubby texture with flecks of colorful bits of fuzz, Rowan Summer Tweed (even the name is summery!) would be summer tweedperfect for a short-sleeved sweater or vest to throw over a tee. The worsted weight would make a quick knit that you could finish in a week, and throw in a suitcase for a weekend at the beach. Normally we sell this silk/cotton blend for $10.95 per 131 skein, but the sale price of $7.69 means you should grab it now before it’s gone.

What will you be knitting or crocheting (or weaving) this summer?

March 26th, 2014

Ribbon Twill Towel from Carol Birtwistle

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Today we’re excited to reveal the third of our twelve Guest Weaver Drafts, the Ribbon Twill Towel. Carol was a WEBS employee when we were still located on Kellogg Ave in Amherst and has been a favorite weaving teacher for years.

Carol offers the following advice for the newer weaver. “Pay close attention to the color arrangement of the warp and take your time winding the warp. After beaming the warp, count the total number of heddles needed on each shaft (you don’t want to have to add heddles in the middle of threading your warp). The threading draft shows you will be threading either a straight draw, a point twill or M & W. Watch the direction of the straight draw – it changes. Before you begin threading the heddles, it’s a good idea to study the threading draft and count off, from the cross, the number of warp ends you feel comfortable threading at one time. Then count the number of heddles needed on each shaft and begin threading the warp. If you find an extra warp end, it can be eliminated by just throwing it off the back beam. On the other hand, if you need to add a warp end, measure the designated color 2 ½ yards long, thread it through its proper heddle and weight it off the back beam. If, after threading the small group of warp ends you have heddles left over or not enough heddles, you have probably made an error in counting the number of warp ends, counting the number of heddles or made a threading error. You should correct these errors before continuing. After completing the threading, carefully sley the warp through the reed, tie the warp onto the cloth beam, check for threading errors, sleying errors and crossed warp ends. Then adjust your tension and you are ready to weave your towel. Enjoy!”

About her history with WEBS she says, “In 1984 we moved from California to Amherst. That spring my daughter and I flew east to find housing and look into schools. Driving around Amherst (and yes we did get lost and couldn’t find any street signs) we passed a big yellow house on Main Street with a WEBS sign out front. Having done a little research I knew there was a yarn store in Amherst and we had found it! Coming to an abrupt halt we found a parking spot and found our way into WEBS. It was an exciting moment talking to Barbara and I knew that I was going to be perfectly happy moving to Amherst. By the time we returned in the late summer WEBS had moved to the large grey house on Kellogg Ave. I renewed my acquaintance with Barbara and she asked me to teach a section of the Beginning Weaving Class. Thus my association with WEBS began. I also worked for a time at the store on Kellogg Ave. before it made the big move to Northampton. Through out all these years I have been teaching various weaving classes and enjoying every minute. My thanks to Barbara and WEBS for the opportunity.”

If you’re a weaver be sure to check out our weaving contest, there’s still time to enter!

March 26th, 2014

National Crochet Month Special Techniques – Invisible Single Crochet

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This week our focus is invisible single crochet decreases. This is a great way to decrease when you’re working in the round making stuffed animals or amigurumi.

Most single crochet decreases leave you with a gap in the fabric on either side of the decreased stitch which can be really unsightly when that fabric is stuffed. This decrease keeps the same density of stitches to your fabric and is nearly invisible.

This is a great stitch to use on our Valley Yarns Spring animals, the bunnylamb and Robin! Try it out and let us know what you think.

March 25th, 2014

Tuesday’s Tip – Keeping Track of Alternate Increase Rounds

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It’s National Crochet Month! To celebrate, we have some wonderful crochet tips to share with you. This week’s tip is from Sara, WEBS Marketing Coordinator and crochet designer.

I like to use 2 linked stitch markers in different colors when my pattern asks me to increase every other round. When I start a round with increases, I’ll use the green marker. This tells me that when I come back to that marker I can Go-Go-Go! No reason to stop and think about the work; just one stitch in each stitch.

When I do start that round with NO increases I’ll mark it with the orange one (better if it was red!), this way when I get back around to that marker I know I need to STOP and make sure that I’m working my increases in this round. This is a great tip for both knitting and crochet!

March 22nd, 2014

Ready, Set, Knit! 349: Kathy talks with Betsy Perry

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This week Kathy talks with Betsy about the line of new Spring yarns from Classic Elite.

New Yarns include Meadowlark and it’s patterns, Bella Lino with its pattern book and a free wrap pattern, Cerro (a dyed version of Canyon) and the accompanying pattern book. And Kathy’s favorite patterns of the season are the Geneva Shawl in Soft Linen(check out the Classic Elite blog post about choosing colors!) and the Lady of Grace sweater knit in Ava, both of which appeared in our Spring 2014 catalog. Keep an eye out for brand new yarns from Classic Elite in June and July as well as new pattern books each month of the year!

Reminder:

Be sure to stop into the store and see all the new Spring garment models! And don’t miss the Classic Elite Yarns Trunk shows.

Steve’s Yarn Picks:

Upcoming Events:

Our 40th Annual Anniversary Sale is coming up, April 1 – May 31!

The Boston Marathon runs on April 21st and you can help the Boston Marathon Scarf Project. They are working towards  providing a scarf for each participant in the marathon this year. Check out the Ravelry group for more details on how to help!

Boston Strong Hat pattern from designer Lisa McFetridge is a colorwork hat design featuring the words “Boston Strong” and the Boston Skyline. Lisa has included additional charts so you have options to really make this hat your own. All proceeds from the sale of this cap pattern will go to OneFundBoston to help the victims.

Join the KNIT-IN with Lisa McFetridge, designer of the Boston Strong Hat, Rebecca Lane of “Blankies for Boston” & the Old South Knitters/Crocheters Saturday April 5, 2014 2-4 pm at the Old South Church in Boston – the church at the Finish Line 645 Boylston Street, Boston – at the Copley T

Have you knit a Boston Strong Hat or a Blanket to donate to a survivor? Do you have a scarf to drop off for the Boston Marathon Scarf Project? You are cordially invited to bring your handcrafted treasures to Old South Church …stay and knit, meet and exchange stories with fellow crafters. If you haven’t begun a hat, scarf or blanket (or two or three), there is still time. A special Boston Strong Hat in progress will be there. Anyone dropping off a hat, scarf or blanket is invited to add a stitch or two to the hat and place their signature on the roll. Truly a group project, this hat will find a special home in the future.

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
March 20th, 2014

The Thornes Pullover from Amy Herzog

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Your response to our first two guest designer patterns has been wonderful. It’s time to highlight the third pattern from our first round of specialty yarns and designers. Amy Herzog designed the Thornes Pullover to be a classic silhouette with special details.

 

About the design Amy says, “The Thornes Pullover from Valley Yarns is a classic, comfortable turtleneck pullover that adds understated elegance to any outfit. The reverse stockinette stitch fabric lends a soft, approachable look to the sweater and makes the color changes in this slightly variegated colorway more subtle. The ribbed trim and twisted stitch detailing give a bit of flair to an otherwise basic staple. I was thrilled to be given such lovely materials for my design for WEBS’ 40th Anniversary celebration. Thornes is worked in their Valley Yarns Superwash DK, in a special color dyed by Madelinetosh called “Magnolia Leaf”. To me, this is the perfect blend of autumn colors. It’s slightly darker than shown in these pictures, like looking at the pattern of fall foliage across a hillside. Incredible.”

And while the gorgeous Magnolia Leaf colorway of the 40th Anniversary Valley Superwash DK hand-dyed by Madelinetosh has sold out this sweater works up beautifully in the solid colors of our Valley Superwash DK, like the Forest colorway.