October 30th, 2015

Starting Soon: Valley Yarns 670 Holiday Bears KAL

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Valley Yarns 670 Holiday Bears KAL

If you’ve seen the cover of our holiday catalog, you know we’ve featured some adorable bears this year. They make the perfect gift for a favorite little one. Knit in either Valley Yarns Valley Superwash, or Valley Yarns Valley Superwash Bulky, they use the same pattern, but end up in two different sizes. The pattern also features accessories for your new bear friends; a hat and sweater. We’ll be starting the bears next week. In the meantime, you can collect your supplies.
Skills You Will Need (or Learn):
knitting in the round on dpns
knit in front and back of stitch (kfb)
knit 2 together (k2tog)
slip slip knit (ssk)

Things You Will Need:
Valley Yarns 670 Holiday Bears pattern (PDF or physical copy)
For 9″ bear: Valley Yarns Valley Superwash – 1 skein for bear, 1 skein for hat or sweater
For 12″ bear: Valley Yarns Superwash Bulky – 1 skein for bear, 1 skein for hat or sweater. (We’ll be knitting ours with Valley Superwash Bulky in 02 tan, with accessories in 23 grape.)
For both: Scraps of dark brown or black for face, and natural for the optional pom pom on the hat
2 sets of US 5 (for 9″ bear) or US 8 (for 12″ bear) DPNS, or size needed to get gauge
Polyfill or Superwash Merino Wool Top for stuffing (Note: if using wool top for stuffing, remove stuffing before machine washing to avoid clumping or pilling.)

For 9″ bear: 6 sts = 1″ (stockinette worked in the round)
For 12″ bear: 4 sts = 1″ (stockinette worked in the round)

We hope you’ll join us for this KAL. We’ve broken it up into four weeks, but you can finish much faster than that, making these bears a great gift idea.

October 29th, 2015

It’s Time to Start…

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Although it’s not quite Hallowe’en, it’s time for us crafters to start working on our holiday gifts.  We all know that starting early gives us time to plan the perfect present for the perfect person. So why don’t most of us actually do this? I can only speak for myself but procrastination is my middle name. I convince myself that I have way more time than I do, rarely taking into account that life is full of surprises and uncontrollable events.  Not keeping this fact in mind derails a fair number of plans I make with the best of intentions.  If you’re even a teeny bit like me, this tendency makes holiday knitting even more stressful than it needs to be.  To assist you with this issue, I’d like to show you a few new yarns that have arrived at the store within the past couple of weeks. Best news: they’re beautiful and bulky.  At 2-3 stitches to the inch, these yarns provide us with a fair chance of finishing our gift knitting in time to actually relax over the holidays.  All of these yarns contain enough yardage to work up some fast gifts in no time.  Think warm hats, toasty cowls and colorful arm warmers.

Last minute gift ideas in super bulky yarns. Read more on the WEBS Blog at blog.yarn.com

First up is my new winter favorite, Noro Kureyon Air, available in six smashing colors. This yarn will perform like other Noro yarns you love, striping in glorious and unexpected color combinations. 110 yards is plenty to whip up a quick hat or a pair of mittens for the person who loves accessories with a splash of color.  

And while we’re talking about Noro, Transitions is another late fall addition with lots of interesting possibilities. The fiber content surely has something for everybody to love: wool, silk, cashmere, angora, mohair and camel hair.  The resulting one-ply yarn is soft to the touch and the colors shift in a more muted range than the Kureyon Air, mentioned above. How about a cowl?

Funky Chunky from The Third Piece, in thirteen solid colors, offers more possibilities for our friends and family members with more traditional tastes.  This yarn is so soft that a next-to-skin cowl would work just fine.  Throw in a cable or two and you’ve got a classic gift that’s sure to please. At two stitches to the inch, you could knit or crochet a few pairs of fingerless mitts in no time at all.  

Last minute gift ideas in super bulky yarns and projects to treat yourself with. Read more on the WEBS Blog at blog.yarn.com

The last item I want to mention is a new collaboration between Rowan yarns and Swarovski beads.  And crystals!  This is not for gift-giving–you owe it to yourself to indulge in something special after all that knitting and crocheting for other people.   The projects range in size from tiny wrist and hair accessories and small shawls to sweaters and even an evening dress.  We’ve got a display in the front of the store to give you lots of inspiration.

I hope you’re inspired to work up a few quick projects before the first snow falls! Let us help you find just the right yarns and patterns for your holiday presents. And don’t forget, we’re open five Sundays this year, November 22, 29, December 6, 13 and 20 from 12-5, to help you find everything you need for those last minute gift projects!

October 28th, 2015

Changing our Stripes

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When looking at patterns/drafts/designs it is sometimes hard (for some of us, anyway) to imagine them in another colorway. And yet, the original colors don’t always match the scheme of the room or person we are weaving for, or that particular color is out of stock or not in our stash. And this is a case where changing our stripes can be just the ticket for creating exactly what we want.

Changing warp and weft colors in your weaving drafts and the dramatic results. read more on the WEBS Blog at blog.yarn.com

One of our customers brought in some gorgeous dishtowels recently and I loved her color combinations, which she said were chosen for the kitchen of the intended recipient. I asked her what draft she used and did a double take when she told me it was one of ours – the Ribbon Towels by Carol Birtwistle. The Ribbon Towels draft has been one of our most popular drafts and features stripes of bright colors against a natural background with a medley of twill patterns. What really struck me in comparing Karen’s version to the original is that she not only changed the colors, but the arrangement of the stripes, which brought a different emphasis to the twill patterning. It ended up looking like a completely different towel.

Changing warp and weft colors in your weaving drafts and the dramatic results. read more on the WEBS Blog at blog.yarn.com

Another great example of this is Draft 07, the Dornik Throw. When Barbara designed it back in 2010, she used a rich palette with ocean blue, grape jelly and dark teal against the lighter whipple blue. We updated the pattern for the 2015 Weaving Sourcebook and the new colorway pairs navy and grey teal with steel and periwinkle for a distinctly different look and feel.

Changing up the colorway is a great way to take a draft and make it yours. One of the things I love about weaving is that I can choose my colors and create combinations that are custom fit for my project. Sometimes I design my own draft as well, but sometimes it’s a simple as changing the stripes on a draft I love. Have you changed the colorway on any of the WEBS drafts? Please share your results!

October 27th, 2015

Handspun, now what? What to weave with your handspun yarn.

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Leslie Ann decided to weave with one of the yarns she began during the 2014 Spinzilla. She used Frabjous Fibers BFL Sparkle, one braid of Moulin Rouge.
Spinzilla wrap up, what to weave with your handspun yarn. Read more on the WEBS Blog at blog.yarn.com
“My first 2-ply! I had about 300 yds total after plying. For weaving I wanted the handspun to be the focus, so I chose to plain weave with a warp much smaller than the weft. I used a navy 8/2 wool and sett it at 12 epi on my Flip, and beat firmly to create a fabric that would stand up to wear. I chose to make a pillow because I love the colors and I wanted to see it daily. I’m planning more pillows because I love that I can add splashes of color to my home and I love to spin the multicolor braids of roving/top.”
Have you done any weaving with your handspun? Have you used any of the yarns you spun for Spinzilla 2015?
October 24th, 2015

Ready, Set, Knit! – No new show this week

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There’s no new show this week but you can enjoy any episode from the archives here.

We’re gathering up our supplies and getting ready for the final holiday gift making push. Our Holiday Gift Giving Guide should be in your mailboxes soon if you’re looking for last minute inspiration and supplies, but you can view it online now if you just can’t wait! And if you don’t already receive our catalogs you can sign up here and our next catalog will arrive in your mailbox in February 2016.

Kathy and Steve will be back with an all new show next week. Until then, have fun with your knitting and crochet!


We have a limited number of Schacht Looms available in cherry, snap these up before they’re gone!

Steve no longer has a Deal of the Day but your can check out the Deals of the Week. A new Deal starts every Tuesday, check the Sale tab on our website.

Upcoming Events:

WEBS will be open Sundays 12-5 beginning November  22 through December 27.

Be sure to check out all of our upcoming Events here.

October 23rd, 2015

Treasures From The Warehouse

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I’m on yarn overload lately. There’s so much new, gorgeous yarn in our store that it’s all blending together in my mind. A few days ago, I took a calming walk out in our warehouse and was reminded once again that there are treasures in our closeout aisles that, in any other context, would be aspirational fibers for any knitter or crocheter (or weaver, truth be told). It’s our luck that a manufacturer made too many of a certain color or just didn’t sell enough to sustain a particular yarn. We can offer those to you at way-lower-than-full-retail-price and you can stock up on some basics that will satisfy any craving. Here are my findings:

Amy discovers fantastic yarns in the warehouse at WEBS. Read more on the WEBS Blog at blog.yarn.com

Classic Elite Yarns Liberty Wool discontinued colors is a gem of a yarn. It’s machine washable and is a pleasing, straightforward worsted-weight workhorse that can handle a sweater, hat, mittens, perhaps a cowl or a scarf. Certainly a baby garment or blanket. The colors available, Orchid Pink, Sky, and Deep Teal, could work for almost any project.

The Fibre Company Road to China Worsted is a dreamy, lush yarn that screams “luxury” to me. It’s a beefy 4.5 stitches/inch on US size 9 needles, and the colors are what I like to call Anthropologie: earth tones, but not muddy browns and grays. Blues, yellows, a ruby red that is eye-catching, and the skein I picked up, in a color called Abalone, is an iridescent gray/green/blue mix that looks like a dragonfly wing. There’s nothing I wouldn’t knit in this lovely combination of baby alpaca, cashmere, camel, and silk.

Frog Tree has long been a favorite of mine. It’s a yarn company that takes what they do very seriously–providing soft, halo-y warm fibers to greedy knitters such as myself. Their Alpaca Sport Melange is a heathery, soft sport-weight that would be perfect for a hat, scarf, or a simple pullover. The bright colors alone would draw any fiber artist to them, but the price! $3.89 a skein, for a yarn that used to be twice that price is a fantastic deal. Stock up, not just on this yarn, but on any of the yarns in this post. And let me know what you’re knitting!

October 22nd, 2015

Help Us Save Lives with Safe Passage

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Each year WEBS sponsors the Hot Chocolate Run for Safe Passage. WEBS sponsors lots of events, both large and small each year, but this one is different. This one affects the heart of our community and has far reaching effects not just for the individuals and families that benefit from the services that Safe Passage can provide but for the people who participate each year. Many of our staff members, their family and friends, walk and run, and work to raise additional funds in the lead-up to this event. We tease each other at work about our fundraising efforts and egg each other on to more. Individually we post on social media to extend the reach of our call for help, we offer special handmade items, and services like knitting and yoga classes, in exchange for donations. We spend our spare time crafting and creating additional products whose sales benefit an organization we believe in. And each year there are new Valley Yarns Patterns, the purchase price of $3.99 PDFs ($4.49 paper patterns) going to Safe Passage, as one more way to help. All of this happens because it is important to us.

We decided to round up those Valley Yarns Patterns, and introduce you to the new patterns, as a way to really kick-off our efforts.

The Safe Passage Hat and Mittens Set - patterns sales benefit Safe Passage. Read more on the WEBS Blog at blog.yarn.comSafe Passage Hat and Mitten Set PDF available here.

The Sixth Button Mittens - patterns sales benefit Safe Passage. Read more on the WEBS Blog at blog.yarn.comThe NEW! Sixth Button Mitten PDF available here.

The Hot Chocolate Run Polar Bear and the Hot Chocolate Run Penguin - patterns sales benefit Safe Passage. Read more on the WEBS Blog at blog.yarn.comThe Hot Chocolate Run Polar Bear PDF available here and the NEW! Hot Chocolate Run Penguin PDF available here.

The Hot Chocolate Run for Safe Passage happens on December 6th this year but we’ll be fundraising right up to the end on Dec. 31st. There’s one last way that you can help Team WEBS, you can make a donation to our team here. Every dollar DOES make a difference and every dollar that’s raised by our team will be matched by WEBS so your donation will be doubled!

October 21st, 2015

Handspun, now what? What to knit with your handspun yarn.

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I have plenty of yarn to work through in my handspun stash this year thanks to Tour de Fleece and Spinzilla but deciding what projects to make can be simultaneously tedious and overwhelming.  There is one website and one important tool that I use when deciding on a project, Ravelry and my yarn gauge.

Spinzilla wrap up, what to knit with your handspun yarn. Read more on the WEBS Blog at blog.yarn.com

First I use my yarn gauge to figure out what my yarn is. Is it worsted, DK, bulky? I wrap the yarn loosely around my gauge and count how many wraps per inch (wpi) I have. I’m using the Fractal spun yarn that I plied from a center-pull ball back in Sept. I ended up with 15 wpi, so I have a fingering weight yarn. Here’s a handy chart that will help to translate wpi into more useful information.  You’ll notice that the stitch gauge is roughly 1/2 the wpi.

Spinzilla wrap up, what to knit with your handspun yarn. Using Ravelry.com to narrow your pattern search. Read more on the WEBS Blog at blog.yarn.com

Now you know your yarn gauge and you can go looking for patterns! Ravelry not only has a fantastic pattern library but they have an advanced pattern search feature that lets you narrow down your search by gauge, yardage, fiber, and more! Go to the pattern tab at the top of the page and you can choose the advanced pattern seach – right there on the left of the screen under the binoculars. Then you can scroll down the categories on the left hand side and narrow down your choices! By choosing Fingering, 300-450 yds and Merino I was still left with over 9,000 pattern choices. So I narrowed it further by choosing a cowl, shawl or scarf pattern and that knocked it down to 3,000 options, but still too many! So I chose adult only patterns and then narrowed my search one more time to Free patterns and that left me with 164, not too bad.

Spinzilla wrap up, what to knit with your handspun yarn. Read more on the WEBS Blog at blog.yarn.com

I didn’t want anything with colorwork or with too much texture since I really want the handspun to shine, I want the fractal color shifts to be the star of the show. I found the Terraform Shawl and it fits the bill! Not only is there a bit of stitch work to keep me interested (no worries about miles and miles of mind-numbing stockinette stitch), but the pattern will show off my yarn, and I can just keep going until I run out of yarn. It couldn’t be more perfect! How do you decide what projects are right for your handspun? Have you made anything with your Spinzilla yarns yet?

October 19th, 2015

WEBS Holiday 2015 eCatalog is here!

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The holiday gift preparation doesn’t really begin for me until my copy of the WEBS Holiday catalog arrives, and this year’s edition is spectacular!

WEBS 2015 Holiday Catalog. Read more on the WEBS Blog at blog.yarn.com

Not only is there an adorable Holiday Bears duo on the cover, with perfect little sweaters and hats to knit and personalize them with (keep an eye on the blog for an upcoming KAL), but the pages are full of so many new knit and crochet patterns that are inspiring me to get yarn on my hooks and needles. New patterns from Doris Chan and Fiona Ellis from the WEBS Designer in Residence series, the new Got You Covered eBook from Emerging Designer Marcy Vandale, and over a dozen New Valley Yarns patterns. Gorgeous gradient yarns sets from Wonderland Yarns, kits from the CREATE YOUR STYLE collection (a collaboration between Rowan Yarns and Swaraovski!), holiday ornament kits from Laura Nelkin, and the Royal Petites from Blue Sky Alpacas. New yarns from Amano, Classic Elite and more!

WEBS 2015 Holiday Catalog. Read more on the WEBS Blog at blog.yarn.com

I’ve started a list of what I’d like to make and I’m gathering supplies so I can get started. What will be the first project you cast on for from this year’s Holiday catalog? And don’t worry! If you’re waiting for the paper catalog to arrive in your mailboxes they’re just starting to ship and should be there within the next 2 weeks. If you don’t yet receive our catalogs but would like to you can sign up right here!

October 17th, 2015

Ready, Set, Knit! 419: LA and Amy talk with Judith Durant

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This week’s show is a first in Ready, Set, Knit! history, we have guests hosts!

LA, WEBS Weaving Manager, and Amy, WEBS Education Manager, talk with author, editor and designer Judith Durant about her newest book in the One Skein Wonders series, One Skein Wonders for Babies.

Ready, Set, Knit! episode #419 - LA and Amy talk with Judith Durant. Listen now on the WEBS Blog - blog.yarn.com

Judith talks about her favorite patterns, and the one she started making before the book was even finished, as well as the On Skein book series and the process of pulling those books together. Judith will be teaching at the American Textile Museum, check out their site for dates and times.

WEBS Gift cards are available

Amy’s Yarn Picks of the week : 


We have a limited number of Schacht Looms available in cherry, snap these up before they’re gone!

Bluster Bay Shuttles will be available on the site soon, keep an eye out for them!

Steve no longer has a Deal of the Day but your can check out the Deals of the Week. A new Deal starts every Tuesday, check the Sale tab on our website.

Upcoming Events:

WEBS will be open Sundays 12-5 beginning November  22 through December 20.

Be sure to check out all of our upcoming Events here.

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