Posts Tagged ‘Norah Gaughan’

Headin’ Off To San Francisco. . . .

Wednesday, February 25th, 2009
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For The Labor Day Weekend Show.  Okay – sorry – carried away.  We’re not quite going to San Fran and it’s nowhere near Labor Day but as we work our way through the final punishing weeks of winter here, I can’t help but channel some Jimmy Buffet.  Thanks for indulging me 🙂

Truthfully, we are heading close to San Francisco and we do have a weekend show – Stitches WEST in Santa Clara! I have to admit as I prep to leave tomorrow, I am still a bit in denial that it’s actually here.  I think I’m a bit out of sorts because I should already be there, but “Mommy Duties” trump everything else and as our kids wind down to their version of spring vacation, it’s a jam packed week of performances and such.  I’ll share today’s event at the end – I know you all just want the yarn!

Let’s start from the beginning, which is planning:


Then it’s pick, pack and ship – one gigantic order:


Hmm – what is in those boxes?  I am not being entirely untruthful when I ask the question.  I’m involved in most of the planning, but honestly, Steve & I debate so many of the closeouts back and forth I’m never quite clear what has made the list vs. what hasn’t until we get set-up!  What I do know is this:

Berroco Spring ’09 – the best of the best – the yarns, the garments, NGV4. . . .there’s nothing else to say.  The amazing Miss Andra will be manning her section of the booth.

Noro – how could we leave the lovelies of Noro at home??  Just not possible.  Silk Garden, Kureyon, Silk Garden Chunky (breathe Noro-lovers, breathe)

Valley Yarns – there in full force, including all of the faboo designs from the Spring ’09 catalog AND some early completions for the next catalog!  That’s right – the incredible Kirsten knocked out a couple of new things just for WEST including a crocheted scarf out of Rainbow that you will just love!  C’mon non-crocheters, give it a chance! 

The cream, sprinkles and cherry on the top of the best dessert ever:

Lorna’s Laces – Shephard Worsted & Sock, Helen’s Lace (we don’t even carry it in the shop!) and brand new to market the spectacular Pearl.  Oh.Yeah.

Madeline Tosh – Oh so yummy – worsted weight (just added in the store and on-line) and sock.  (The worsted just came in and has not made it’s way to the site.  Click on the link and refresh tomorrow – it should show up )


Malabrigo including the elusive Sock.  We spent so much time picking colors with Tobias at TNNA based on his availability (not what we normally carry) and what showed up was – well – a ton of yarn in some colorways we carry, some we picked and some who obviously just wanted to come along for the ride.  Show them some love, okay?

Kauni – Many, many colors.

Plus, plus, plus. . . . . .I’m sure there will be some surprises.  That’s what is so great about these shows. 

We are so excited to see all of you – that’s the most fun!  What was interesting as we prepped for this show was the worry/wonder if people would come due to the economy – would you pick classes over marketplace, shopping over classes?  If you are coming or not, I’d love to hear why.  Not trying to pry, just trying to get a gauge (no pun intended) on things.

I will do my best to post from the show.  For the best updates, you all need to be following me on Twitter.  I know, I know, one more thing to check, but I *heart* Twitter and I can zip off an update in 5 seconds.  For those of you on Facebook, my Twitter feeds post there so you can avoid Twitter and find me on Facebook with the same info. 

For those of you not attending the show – have a great next few days and join in the fun via the above options,  here on the blog & our Ready, Set, Knit! Podcast!

Last, but far from least, here is Jonathan’s “Family Story” he presented today – the dedication says it all:


 Daniel is my nephew/Jonathan’s cousin who is all grown-up and pursuing a PhD.  He’s away at school and Jonathan doesn’t get to see him much – this tells us how much those times together mean.  The three page story about Daniel and what Jonathan thinks of him is awesome.



Friday, February 13th, 2009
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Each week the team at Berroco publishes their free e-newsletter KnitBits.  It’s usually chock full of info about new yarns, designs, free patterns, tips, etc.

As I was scrolling through this week’s edition which focuses on Booklet #285, Linen Picnic (Norah & Cirilia do a great audio slideshow about the designs in the booklet btw), I came upon this:

This is Remember and it’s knit in Berroco Pure Merino Heathers.  Remember is a winterized version of the Moska tank from Booklet #285 Linen Picnic (see how it all ties together)  To winterize the garment, Pure Merino Heather was substituted for Linen Jeans, sleeves were added and the tank design was reinvented as a cardigan.  Smocking was incorporated into the stitch pattern on the front and back and is done as you knit.  Remember is offered in 6 sizes from XS-2X (finished chest measurement of 30″-48″)  which is awesome.

We stock 12 colors of Pure Merino Heathers including the Cinnabar Lacquer shown.  Keep in mind that with WEBS Yarn Discounts, you’ll save approximately $20.00 to $50.00 (depending on size & # balls of yarn) when you buy the yarn for this project from us.

Do you think this is a project you’ll be adding to your queue?


New Berroco Spring Yarns!

Thursday, January 22nd, 2009
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I hesitate to even utter the “s” word, as most of you are in the deep freeze.  Despite the frigid temperatures, it’s that time of year again when new yarns begin arriving in earnest here at WEBS.  Besides, thoughts of new yarns and projects can’t help but make us all feel a little warm and fuzzy inside, right?

Berroco is usually the first of our major vedors to ship their spring line.  We’ve actually had the yarns in house for awhile, but between the craziness of the holidays and the fact we were waiting on the arrival of the spring pattern books, we haven’t really talked much about the yarns.

First up is Mica, which is a 31%cotton/26% silk/23% nylon/20% linen blend.  Each ball has 108 yards and knits at 5.25 sts/in on a #6 needle. The yarn itself has a bit of a sheen to it, but once knit up, the fabric is not at all shiny.  Mica is $8.00/hank and has lovely pattern support in it’s own dedicated book and in Norah Gaughan Volume 4 (which from this point forward will be referenced as NVG4).


Latitude is also new for spring and it has a blend of 48%cotton/48% rayon and 4% binder thread.  Each ball has 109 yards and it knits at 5 sts/in on a #5 needle.  I like Lattitude because it’s got a bit of texture to it, without being too busy.  Again, Lattitude has it’s own dedicated book #282.


One thing the Berroco line was missing was a spring basic.  Well, it’s no longer missing.  Berroco is introducing Pure Pima which we are affectionately calling a 50/50 cotton/cotton blend.  It’s 50% mercerized cotton/50% unmercerized cotton and is available in a gazillion colors.  Each hand has 115 yards, knits at 5.5 sts on a #6 needle and will cost $6.00/hank.  It is soft and lovely and Norah obviously loves this yarn because it’s all over NGV4.


There are 35 total colors and we’re carrying 31. 

New additions to existing lines include Bonsai Colors and Seduce Colors. 



These two new yarns are featured in a shared pattern book #283 .

Plus Sox has gone all sparkly (bestill my heart):


The Comfort product line has been rounded out with the addition of Comfort Chunky and Comfort Baby.  If you have not knit with Comfort, it’s a yarn worth checking out.  I know some of you may be turned off by the acrylic/nylon blend, trust me when I say you would never guess that fiber content if you were in a blind touch-test.  Plus, the price points can’t be beat and a dedicated Comfort pattern book.

There are , five new pattern books plus NGV4 – 77 totally new designs.

All of the yarns are in-store and on-line.  If you check out this week’s podcast you’ll be able to catch an interview iwith our Berroco rep Andra who gives a lot more detail, espcially on the patterns.

You can also checkout last week’s Knitbits, which is Berroco’s weekly e-newsletter.  Lots of great info about the new spring yarns and designs.  The Berroco blog also has a great behind the scenes video from the spring photoshoot!

I will leave you all with this shot from San Diego:


I know it’s hard to look at when you’re freezing, but maybe it will help just a little.  The large ship in the background to the right is the U.S.S. Ronald Reagan.  I’ll give a full TNNA update later this week!


The Week+ In Review

Sunday, September 21st, 2008
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September has been quite the whirlwind. Last I left you all, I was off on a trip to St. Louis. I was gone for 3 days, which isn’t all that long, but long enough to unsettle the schedule. I was originally suppose to be gone longer, but Mom responsibilities called and Steve had to travel to Manhattan to speak at the Big Apple Knitters Guild Annual Luncheon. He didn’t take any pictures, but I sure would’ve liked to have been a fly on the wall watching him and 87 knitters!
I left again last Tuesday to head to Cleveland for the second season taping of Knitting Daily TV. I was pretty nervous when we went for the taping last April, but this time was much less stressful. Steve once again stayed home. We’ve been away so much this year we really felt we couldn’t leave the boys again unless it was necessary for us both to be somewhere. In this case it wasn’t.
I was met at the airport by the lovely Shannon Okey, who was kind enough to give me a bit of a lift. It was greatly appreciated given that I did not have time to ship all of the “stuff” for my segments in advance so I had one huge suitcase with yarn and props for seven segments along with a second smaller bag packed with seven different outfits. I was also carrying with me yarn that she was in need of for a rush project, so the helping hands worked both ways! Thanks Shannon – great to see you!
I went directly to the studios to prep for my segments and then the next day was taping day!
I did take a few snapshots to share. Here’s Liz Gipson and Eunny Jang prepping in the “Green Room” – it really is green.
Here’s Shay Pendray working a project in between segments. She is one of the loveliest people I have ever met.

Here’s Kim Werker on set prepping for a segment with producer Kathy.

It was great fun to do the TV thing again, but I was equally happy to head for home again.

The night before I left for Cleveland, the WEBS crew gathered for a surprise shower for Mary. I was in charge of carrying out the cover story and getting her to the restaurant on-time. She thought we were meeting our designer and one of our printers for dinner to discuss business. When we walked into the retaurant, she instead found this:

She was completely surprised and we had a lovely celebration. The wedding is only 3 weeks away and we’re excited to share in her special day!

I flew home from Cleveland in time to record this week’s podcast which featured Norah Gaughan! She was in town for a store appearance that night so it was the perfect opportunity to have her back on the show. I was a little delirious from the traveling and started out the interview by calling one of Berroco’s yarns by the wrong name. Consumate professional – yep, that’s me.

We finished the recording and Steve and I headed over to UMass to make a presentation to a marketing class. It was great fun but a little tough since Steve had written the presentation while I was gone. I think we muddled through pretty well.

Then it was back to the store to prep for the event with Norah. As exhausted as I was, the event was GREAT! We had many of the Fall ’08 garments on hand and most in two sizes.

Our sales rep Andra and Berroco Designer (and former WEBS staffer) Cirilia modeled:
I picked this picture in particular because of the garment. I apologize that the shot is a bit blurry. This is Assemblage from NGV3 (Norah Gaughan Book volume 3). Norah explained that initially she had envisioned this cardigan with a wrap that would attach. She brought along the piece and attached it for us to see the look. I love Assemblage as is, but I like it this way too! It’s knit in Pure Merino DK.
I am also including this picture of Portrait (knit in Inca Gold), also found in NGV3 for a reason.
The design inspiration for this garment is a knitted cable. Norah, with the help of Margery, pixelated what a knitted cable looks like and incorporated it into this design. When I first saw this garment, I did not see the cable. In fact, depending on the person, it has a sort of “hologram” effect as different people see different things. Now that we know what it is, it’s clear as day. That Norah, she’s a smart cookie.
I have video from both KDTV and Norah’s event, but that’s going to take a little more editing time. I will post them soon though!
The remainder of this week was uneventful. All I know Toto “there’s no place like home”.

Seasons Collide

Wednesday, July 30th, 2008
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Our annual Summer Sale is on! This sale is all about clearing out closeout inventory. There are some great deals and steals to be had this year – Steve took no prisoners and is serious about making some room out in the warehouse. For those of you who have ever shopped the store, you know we always have a $2.00 bin. This is where odds and ends land. Well, Steve has added a $2.00 bin to the on-line sale this year! Fun for all! Be sure to check out the great buys on some really nice yarns for knitters, crocheters and weavers. Just remember, when they are gone, they are GONE!
We received our copies of Vogue Knitting Fall ’08 a few days ago. I will readily admit that I don’t run to the receiving area to grab my copy like I do when Interweave Knits comes. Usually there are a couple of patterns I like, but that’s usually it. Well, Fall ’08 is a completely different story. It is a really, really, REALLY nice issue. Look at the cover – LOOK AT THE MITTENS:

Designed by Jared of Brooklyn Tweed fame, those are mittens – serious mittens.
Called Green Autumn, they are classic, beautiful, challenging – perfect. The entire mitten spread has some great designs, some a bit more out there then others (from my perspective, but that’s just me and my own personal aesthetic). Overall, very nicely done.
As I turned the page I was hit with this:

OMG – it’s stunning. Secondly, it’s designed by Robin Melanson, who I had the chance to meet briefly and is lovely and thirdly, she used Blue Sky Alpaca Melange.
Then there’s this:

I love this too! Knit in Torino Bulky means it will move along. It’s seed stitch surrounded by ribbing and knit from the top down. It’s rated as an “intermediate” pattern (whereas the other two are “experienced” so won’t be showing up on my needles anytime soon) so maybe I’ll take it on. We’ll see.
At this point, I am loving VK Fall ’08 and as I continue to flip the pages (liking other things along the way, not just the ones I’m mentioning here) I come to this:

Norah Gaughan design using Berroco Peruvia. What else needs to be said?
Last, there is this one by Elsebeth Lavold:

Another “experienced” knit so unlikely to be knit by me, but it sure is pretty.
So, hat’s off to Trisha Malcolm and her team – fabulous job one and all! Plus the editorial content is quite good too including articles about the Canadian knitting scene and our friends Jess and Casey at Ravelry. This is a nicely done issue.
Okay, what else? Oh, I received a wonderful surprise in the mail about a week or so ago from Iris at Artyarns:

It’s beautiful and I was very touched that she thought to send it to me. Cashmere and crochet – what more could I ask for? This will be some pretty intense crocheting since the cashmere is her single ply Cashmere 1 and the pattern calls for a “C” hook. All of the circles are crocheted separately and joined as you go-ish. It’s definitely going in the queue! Thanks Iris!
Last night, several of us went out to fete the lovely and talented Cirilia.
Many of you know her from the store and others from our catalog. She has been with us since she graduate 3 years ago and has brought so much to WEBS. Well, she is leaving and we are very sad. Fortunately, she is staying in the industry so I know we will still get to cross paths and such. I am not sure if I am at liberty to say where she is going (she wasn’t sure either) so I’m going to play it safe and say nothing other than “Go Get ‘Em Cirilia!”

Lastly, a Happy, Happy Birthday to Barbara Elkins! B – we hope you are enjoying your day – we enjoyed your cake!

You Know It’s Been A Long Time Since Your Last Post When. . . .

Sunday, September 16th, 2007
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you have to stop and “think” about your password. Ugh.

Well, it’s not like it hasn’t been busy, I will at least take comfort in that. Let’s see, so where to start.
Last I left you we were on vacation, which was lovely and all too short. Isn’t that true for all vacations?
When we came home there were two weeks until school started, so in the eyes of the boys, lots of summer fun to still be had. Jonathan made the most of his time, finally mastering this:

Then one morning, I arrived at the store and our quirky Fedex delivery guy was there. Guess what he brought us, that lovely day? Yarn you yell? Sorry, wrong. Needles?? I hear you, but no, wrong again. It wasn’t books or accessories or even a loom! It was this:

And two white friends. He came into the possesion of six abandoned kittens, three of which he found homes for. The other three were tooling around in his truck, which at four weeks old, is no place for a kitten. So what to do? He was smart – he brought them to the yarn store. The good news is all three have homes. “Lily” even came back for a visit and transfer of ownership. Look at how great she looks!

Thanks Melissa, Sharlene and Nancy for taking such good care of these little treasures and taking them into your homes.

Next, Steve and I got to escape for an overnight to Boston. We did a little shopping and then headed here:

For this:

Yup, we are Parrotheads in a big way and we had a BLAST! I have to share a couple of fun pics:

His cooler is motorized!


REALLY big drinks!


We’re pretty tame Parrotheads, when you come right down to it.

Then, before we knew it, it was time for this:
The first day, in the first grade and the first day in the third grade. We were jumping for joy and shedding a wee bit of a tear all at the same time.
There was some amazing knitting that has graced our presence over the past few weeks including this:

Marion works in the store and there is NOTHING she can’t knit. This masterpiece is for her husband.

My Tilted Duster is moving along. Working on the second sleeve and getting ready to assemble the fronts and backs. Got to show my work off to the designer, as we hosted this:

Our event with Norah Gaughan was so much fun. We got to spend the better part of the day with her. She was a guest “in-studio” for our weekly podcast, Ready, Set, Knit!
Our customers had fun:

Our staff worked the runway:

A good time was had by all. The garments from her pattern book were inspirational and looked so great on so many different people! Be sure to check it out as well as all of the Berroco yarns!
As a family, we celebrated Rosh Hashanah. Happy New Year to everyone who also celebrated.
So I think that catches me up. The yarn, well, there’s so much yarn and new accessories and stuff, I can’t even begin to recreate all of it. Be sure to watch the website, check out the store and watch your mail for our Fall catalog! I think it came out quite nicely!
One quick yarn note. Our own Valley Yarns Colrain is on special through next Wednesday, 9/19. Regularly $3.99/ball, it’s being featured at $2.99/ball as part of the launch of our fall catalog and new series of Valley Yarns patterns. Be sure to check out Melissa’s Radiance Jacket that she designed for us. It’s really beautiful. The yarn is equally beautiful. We sell it well in the store and at shows, but we struggle to translate it on the web. This merino/tencel blend is really pretty. The tencel adds a lovely sheen that is just right. For those of you hand dyeing at home – order some natural and test a couple of balls. Be prepared to have your socks knocked off.
Even though I’m well along on my Tilted Duster, we have just kicked off the knitalong on the podcast, so tune in and knitalong with Pixie and I!
We’ve got a couple of super-secret projects in the works, that The Big Guy says I cannot blog about yet, but as soon as I can share, I will! (And for the record, I am not pregnant, not going to be pregnant, so just skip over that entire discussion. It’s all work stuff).
Vickie Howell will be at WEBS this Thursday, 9/20 from 6-9pm. This is one of those rare opportunities – we are so lucky that she has made time to come all the way to Northampton, so I hope we have a great turn out! We’ll be hanging out with her, we’ll offer a Yarn Tasting of her very own collection and there will be garments on hand to check out. Be sure to register so we have enough munchies for everyone!
Now that the kids are settled into their schedules, I am hoping to get back to more frequent blogging. Thanks for being patient!