Posts Tagged ‘knitting tips’

Tuesday’s Knitting and Crochet Tip – Project Bag Essential

Tuesday, December 17th, 2013
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photos by Amy StephensOne project bag essential that is often overlooked are simple nail clippers!

They won’t snag your projects and are perfect for snipping your yarn on the go. They’re inexpensive, and it’s easy to have one for each project bag. I never leave home without them!

Tuesday’s Knitting and Crochet Tip: How to Weave in Short Yarn Tails

Tuesday, December 10th, 2013
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How to Weave in Short Yarn TailsOh no! You cut your yarn tail too short and now you can’t weave in your ends. Or maybe you ran low on yarn while casting on 275 stitches and really don’t want to rip back and start over, just so you have a long tail to weave in.

This is definitely one of those, “Why didn’t I think of that!?” tips.

Just insert your yarn needle into your project first, then thread it. This makes it possible to work with much less yarn than if you threaded the needle first. It’s so simple, yet so helpful!

Ready, Set, Knit! 336: Kathy talks with Amy Herzog

Saturday, December 7th, 2013
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This week Kathy talks with Amy Herzog, the author of Knit to Flatter, and the creator of the Custom Fit program.

custom fot banner

 

Amy became a sweater knitter because she wanted to knit clothes she could wear and with the Custom Fit program she tries to empower other knitters to do the same for themselves. When you knit a sweater that really fits and makes you feel good you end up with Happy Sweater Face!

From the site:

CustomFit makes custom patterns for hand-knit sweaters. It takes your choices, your body, and your hand-knit fabric and produces a pattern perfectly suited to you.

CustomFit makes a sweater that is the correct size. From hem to neck, and everything in between.

Steve’s Yarn Picks:

Upcoming Events:

Team WEBS is running and walking in the Annual Hot Chocolate run to benefit Safe Passage on TOMORROW!  Please make a donation to any member of our team through December 31st and remember: Steve and Kathy will match all funds raised!

WEBS will be open on Sundays, from 12-5,  through December 22nd.

Reminder:

Ready, Set, Knit! listeners are you up for a challenge?!   The KnottyGirls Knitcast issued a challenge and started the Ravelry Podcaster Throwdown. They claimed that their listeners will turn in more hats for Halos of Hope by the end of Stitches West 2014 than any other podcast out there. You all know that Kathy has a competitive streak a mile wide and can’t resist a challenge! Steve has even stepped in and said that he will ship all the collected hats to Stitches West! Here’s what you need to do:

Make as many knit and/or crochet hats as you can (check here for preferred fibers and free patterns) and get them to us by February 1, 2014. Make sure each hat and package is labeled with “Team RSK!” Please mail all packages to:

WEBS
Attn: TEAM RSK!
6 Industrial Pkwy.
Easthampton, MA 01027

If you’re posting about your progress on Facebook or Twitter please use #PodcastThrowdown. And please join the Podcasters Throwdown Group on Ravelry and show your support in the Team RSK thread! If you’ve sent in hats let us know who you are.

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

Tuesday’s Knitting and Crochet Tip: Factor in Stretch – Swatching with Clothespins

Tuesday, December 3rd, 2013
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Factor in Stretch Swatching with Clothespins

 When working with a notoriously stretchy fiber, it can be hard to tell how your finished project is really going to drape. The stretch and weight of cotton yarn can add inches to a finished sweater. You can’t really tell how much the project will stretch from your swatch alone, since it’s the weight of the entire project that distorts it.

A great solution is to attach clothespins to the base of your swatch to add some weight. Now you can see how much your swatch stretches and factor that into your project. No more surprises!

 

Tuesday’s Tip – How to Use Small Skeins of Handspun Yarn

Tuesday, November 26th, 2013
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This week’s tip comes from Sara Delaney, WEBS Marketing Coordinator. Sara has a great idea for what to do with those little skeins of handspun you may have sitting around.
How to Use Single Skeins of Handpsun Scrobble Cowl
Sometimes you have that perfect little braid of fiber, 4oz or less, that spins up into a gorgeous yarn, but you don’t end up with much yardage ,so it languishes in your stash. Languish no more, little skeins! Pair that handspun with a skein of sparkly mohair and make a simple cowl with alternating stripes. You won’t even have to purl! You’ll have great visual interest with the different yarn weights and sparkle, as well a textural interest with the mohair.
Click here to check out Sara’s Scrobble Cowl pattern!

Ready, Set, Knit! 335: Kathy talks with Ellen Gormley

Saturday, November 23rd, 2013
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This week Kathy talks with first time guest Ellen Gormley, crochet expert from Knit & Crochet Now! – check your local PBS station for availability.

Ellen talks about prepping for each season and the work that goes into presenting a project. Currently in it’s 4th season, Knit & Crochet Now! has a great mix of projects that range from beginner to advanced each season and features patterns and techniques from some of the industries top designers.

We have 2 copies of the Season 4 DVD to give away! Leave us a comment and tell us if you’re a knitter, a crocheter or both, by 11:59pm on Tuesday, Nov 27th. The winners will be announced the following Saturday, Nov. 30th.

Steve’s Yarn Picks:

Upcoming Events:

Northampton Bag Day is happening TODAY!  20% off any one item,  in store only

Our November KAL on Ravelry has just one week to go but there’s still time to participate! Join us in making the Safe Passage Set and be entered to win a $50 WEBS Gift Certificate.

WEBS is closed on Thursday for the Thanksgiving holiday but will begin opening on Sundays, from 12-5, starting December 1st and running through December 22nd.

Team WEBS is running and walking in the Annual Hot Chocolate run to benefit Safe Passage on December 8th. Please make a donation to any member of our team and remember: Steve and Kathy will match all funds raised!

Reminder:

Ready, Set, Knit! listeners are you up for a challenge?!   The KnottyGirls Knitcast issued a challenge and started the Ravelry Podcaster Throwdown. They claimed that their listeners will turn in more hats for Halos of Hope by the end of Stitches West 2014 than any other podcast out there. You all know that Kathy has a competitive streak a mile wide and can’t resist a challenge! Steve has even stepped in and said that he will ship all the collected hats to Stitches West! Here’s what you need to do:

Make as many knit and/or crochet hats as you can (check here for preferred fibers and free patterns) and get them to us by February 1, 2014. Make sure each hat and package is labeled with “Team RSK!” Please mail all packages to:

WEBS
Attn: TEAM RSK!
6 Industrial Pkwy.
Easthampton, MA 01027

If you’re posting about your progress on Facebook or Twitter please use #PodcastThrowdown. And please join the Podcasters Throwdown Group on Ravelry and show your support in the Team RSK thread! If you’ve sent in hats let us know who you are.

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

Tuesday’s Tip – How to Count Hard to See Stitches

Tuesday, November 19th, 2013
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Counting Hard to See Stitches

We all know how important it is to do a gauge swatch, but sometimes your stitches can be hard to see. Knitting and crocheting with fuzzy yarn, ruffle yarn, or even just a super bulky yarn can make counting your stitches really tricky.

To make it easier, hold your project up to a window so the light can shine through.  This will allow you to see your stitches for easy counting! Just make sure you don’t stretch your project, otherwise it will distort your stitch count.

 

 

Tuesday’s Tip – Knit and Crochet Easily with Coned Yarn

Tuesday, November 12th, 2013
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Coned yarns aren’t just for weaving! Yarns wound onto a cone are wonderful to knit and crochet with. They generally come in fairly large quantities, which means fewer joins and weaving in ends. The only tricky part can be getting the yarn off the cone easily while you’re working with it. You could put the cone on the floor, but your seat may not be high enough to be effective. A great solution is to run the yarn over a tall object so it glides off the cone easily.

Knit and Crochet Easily with Coned YarnRun the yarn from a cone over a tall object so it glides off the cone easily.

Here, I used a tall computer monitor, but a desk lamp would work really well too. If you haven’t worked with coned yarns before, you can try the Valley Yarns 496 Greenway Shawl knit in Valley Yarns 2/10 Merino Tencel (Colrain Lace) and Valley Yarns 456 Sumac Berry Shawl crocheted in Valley Yarns 2/14 Alpaca Silk.

Some Holiday Thoughts

Friday, November 8th, 2013
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Tis the season, as they say. My family celebrates Hanukkah, which comes way too early this year (November 28, to be exact). I’m postponing it until Decemberish, when I can get my wits about me. While I have time, I’m casting a curious eye through the store to store up some holiday gift ideas for some knitters or lovers of knitwear on my list. I like to make small projects like fingerless mitts, hats, or cowls, since they’re fast. I also like to use some unusual yarns that I wouldn’t ordinarily use for my personal knitting, to keep it festive.

Any gift I give this year will be accompanied by these stunningly beautiful gift cards featuring photographs by the very talented Debbie Cook, who runs the Flayvors of Cook Farms store, and works at our retail store (lucky us!). The photos are spare and charming at the same time, and perfect with some elegant silvery or dark wrapping paper.

Buffalo Wool Company has a yarn called Sexy, and how can you not give someone a lacy shawl made with Sexy yarn that’s half Bison down and half silk? Very festive.

The colors are deep and lush, and even though it’s a laceweight yarn, I could probably whip out an open-work pattern for a shoulder-covering shawl in no time, from this often-used book.

I’d also use a Blue Sky Alpacas yarn I’ve been mulling over for a long time, Metalico. It’s another 50/50 yarn, this time alpaca and silk. It’s got a sheen that is tempered by the fuzziness of the alpaca, and I think it would make a great cowl or hat to go with a Little Black Dress.

And since the holidays are glittery and fun, I’d think about using a one-off sparkler like Artyarns Silk Mohair Glitter. Lots of fun colors and a shot of silver or gold thread will give you tons of ideas for lacy scarves or ornamental cuffs to wear with a holiday dress to a caroling party.

 

Tuesday’s Knitting and Crochet Tip – Using a Salad Spinner

Tuesday, November 5th, 2013
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Have you ever held a dripping sweater in your hands and wonder what is the best way to remove the excess water before blocking? Just the right tool may be found in your kitchen.

Use a salad spinner to get out excess water from your knitting or crochet project before blocking.

After I finish knitting or crocheting a project, I like to give it a good soak in some water with wool wash. I’ve tried a number of ways of removing the extra water before pinning it to a blocking board. My favorite and probably the quickest method is to use a salad spinner. It’s a lot more gentle than the spin cycle in my washing machine. I’ve used the towel method, but I don’t love the big pile of wet towels I have at the end. So if the project isn’t too big, I grab my salad spinner.

I’m always impressed by how much excess water I can get out with the salad spinner. (Yay centrifugal force!) A large salad spinner is big enough for many projects such as scarves, shawls, baby garments, lightweight sweaters, and gauge swatches (you do swatch, right?).

What is your favorite method of getting out the water from your project? Leave a note in the comments.