Posts Tagged ‘Stitches West’

Ready, Set, Knit! 301: Kathy talks with Steve from Stitches West

Saturday, February 23rd, 2013
Share Button

Play Now:

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.


Guest: Kathy and Steve talk about what it takes to set up at Stitches West, in the Santa Clara Convention Center, and all the great products we’ve brought this year.

Steve and Jeff arrived earlier in the week to pick up everything for our booths, which was packed up and shipped to California 2 weeks ago, and to set up the layout and fixtures. On Thursday the rest of our crew was on hand to fill the booths with product before the Student Preview on Thursday night. The sales floor is open 10-6 Sat, 10-4 Sunday.

WEBS is at the front of Aisles 600 and 700 in booths 603-611 and 704-712 and those booths are PACKED with Madeline Tosh DK, Tosh Merino Light, Malabrigo, Kureyon and Silk Garden, Debbie Bliss Cashmerino Aran and Baby Cashmerino in discontinued colors, Knitters Pride Needles – including Karbonz, all the new Berroco spring yarns and Andra! as well as Valley Yarns favorites and two of our newest yarns Northampton Sport and Enfield. We also have all the new patterns from the Spring Catalog and the catalogs!

Congratulations to our 300th Episode Giveaway Winners!

Leslie J. from Ohio
Melinda K. from Kentucky
Judy S. from California
Kristin K. from Lake Oswego Oregon
Emily P. from Massachusetts
Jennilee M. from Manitoba, Canada
Barbara P. from Indiana
Patricia B. from Washington, DC

Steve’s Yarn Picks 

Upcoming Events: 

Norah Gaughan and the Berroco Design Team will be at WEBS on Thursday, March 7th from 6-8pm

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

Stitches West Preview

Monday, February 18th, 2013
Share Button

Are you headed to Stitches West this weekend? If you are, make sure you print out this coupon for half off admission! It does not apply to online ticket purchases, and you must have the coupon with you.

Come visit us in booths 604-612, 703-711! And we’ll have lots of yarn packed into that 10 booth space. We’re bringing favorites from Malabrigo, Madelinetosh, and Berroco. We’ll also have closeouts like Noro Kureyon Discontinued Colors, Noro Silk Garden Discontinued Colors and more!

If you’ve had a chance to view our spring catalog, you saw the new Valley Yarns garments. We’ll have many with us at Stitches, so stop by the booth and see them in person. We’ll also have 514 Burning Branch Shawl knit in Valley Yarns BFL Fingering which will be our next KAL starting here on the blog on Thursday.

Looking for needles and crochet hooks? We’ll have Knitter’s Pride and Addis, so you’ll find one to suit your preference.

We hope to see you in Santa Clara!

Ready, Set, Knit #256: Kathy talks with Guido Stein about Fiber Camp Boston 2012

Saturday, March 3rd, 2012
Share Button

Play Now: 

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

Guest: Kathy talks with Guido Stein about how the Common Cod Fiber Guild got started and its current speaker series. Just around the corner is Fiber Camp Boston 2012 in Cambridge, MA, a PodCamp like community un-conference for fiber craft enthusiasts including knitters, crocheters, weavers, spinners, dyers, and anyone curious about fiber crafts. Fibercamp is based on the fact that everyone has something to share and teach. Connect with the community by sharing your passion. Registration now for this March 9-11 event. The first 10 Ready, Set, Knit listeners who sign up can use the code WEBS to get $10 off of non-guild registration.

There have been some recent additions to interchangeable needle lines. Check out the new Addi Click Lace Long Tips with the handy life line feature. Knitter’s Pride now has the Special Interchangeable Circular Needle Tips available in the Dreamz, Nova, and Cubics lines. These tips are shorter and when paired with the shortest Knitter’s Pride cable can make a 16″ interchangeable needle. The Knitter’s Pride Comby Interchangeable Sampler Set now includes Cubics tips instead of Trendz tips.

Steve does a recap of Stitches West. Thanks to everyone who stopped by our booth. It was a great show.

Details are now on our website about Brenda Dayne’s visit to WEBS May 8-9.

Don’t forget to check us out on Facebook, Twitter, Google +, and Ravelry. There’s great conversations happening on these social networks. We’d love to have you join in!

Pinterest is the latest and hottest addition to the social landscape. Think of it like a virtual pin board. You can pin photos and videos on themed boards, a great place to collect things that inspire. WEBS has just started a Pinterest page so we haven’t pinned much yet. Let’s us know what kinds of things you would like to see us pin.

Are you on Pinterest? How do you like to use it?

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

Wrap Up Wednesday

Wednesday, March 3rd, 2010
Share Button

Hi Everyone

It’s been a crazy few days with Steve being at Stitches West, Olympic Knitting, hockey, “the foot” and life.  I definitely lost control here on the blog.  I have a variety of odds and ends I’ve been wanting to share with you so in order to get myself back on schedule I”m going to lump several things into this post.

1.  Thanks to everyone who came out for our Superbowl Event.  I wasn’t able to attend but Karen our Store Manager and her team did a FABOO job!  She sent me these pics a couple of weeks ago and I’ve been behind in posting them.

It was a great afternoon of fiber fun, food and prizes!

2.  Our Launch Party for Gail Callahan’s new book “Hand Dyeing Yarn and Fleece” was an absolute blast on Sunday 2/21.  We had a great crowd, those Gail holds near and dear were present and I had a great time dyeing my first skein of yarn!

Gail has provided me with the supplies I need to finish dyeing my skein.  We went through the complete process but it was a little rushed and a little stressful following Gail’s instructions in front of a crowd of people!  My skein currently has many “white” or “bare” areas which some folks love.  Me?  Not so much.  I want my skein solid, so I need to do a little more work on it.  The spots are visible in the last picture above.

3.  Well?  How did you all do on your Olympic Knitting?  Inquiring minds want to  know so PLEASE leave a comment!  Me?  Well – I certainly didn’t win a medal but made a respectable showing.  The two hats that were on my list were finished and given that they are belated Christmas gifts I am thrilled I got them done.  Here’s the first one finished, which I had previously posted:

And here’s the second:

Same pattern, this time using Misti Alpaca Chunky and our basic Hat from Measurements pattern.  It only took one skein which was great – especially since I didn’t swatch and therefore didn’t get gauge and therefore was freaking out it would be too small. . . . In the end it all worked out.  I even had J2 model it to reassure myself the size would be okay for the recipient:

I also got past the halfway point on the never-ending Blue Sky Alpaca Worsted scarf.

The chicken and the crochet scarf?  Well. . . . . .not so much.  I knew the crochet scarf was a stretch so I’m actually okay with the fact it didn’t come to fruition.  The chicken bums me out.  I don’t know why I have such a mental/knitters block on this project.  I did get side tracked with some super secret swatching and I did lose some time obsessing over the gauge issue with the 2nd hat but in the end they are simply excuses.  The chicken parts and pieces and the crochet scarf will be coming on vacation with me so there is still hope.

4.  Last week’s free pattern – Buckland knit in either Rowan Cotton Jeans or Natural Silk Aran.

It’s a great cardi and both yarns are currently on closeout at WEBS so it’s now a very affordable project as well!

5.  Our thanks to everyone who stopped by the booth at Stitches West.  Although I stayed home this year, I know the entire crew was thrilled to see so many familiar faces and make so many new friends.  I’ve been hearing snippets of the antics of Sunday night but as Della of Della Q reminded me today “What happens at West, stays at West” so I guess that’s all I’ve got.

6. The main reaon I stayed home and more important than my annoying foot injury was the fact that it was the last week of winter term at our boys’ school and that always means special activities, performances, etc.  For J1, it meant the end of his term in drama and that means a play:

It’s not a classic, it was a quirky ensemble piece that they performed beautifully.  Having watched this crew in plays since kindergarten it’s amazing to see them as 5th graders and how far they’ve come.  It’s also really cool to see how comfortable they are on stage and with each other.  Job well done.

The end of winter term in 3rd grade means only one thing – the Biography Fair.  Two years ago, J1 wrote his report and presented himself as Tom Brady.  Although I had hoped J2 would step up and channel some amazing historical individual, the sports gene runs long and deep in this family so I wasn’t surprised when he decided to study a famous hockey player.  What was surprising was his choice:

Yes, just days before the USA played Canada for gold, J2 profiled and channeled Marty Brodeur.  Now remember, J1 is the goalie, not J2.  If you want my professional “mom” opinion on all of this, I think that J2 just wanted and excuse to wear all the gear:

I was pleasantly surprised when he opted to wear our goalie pads from street hockey vs. J1’s ice hockey pads.

The street hockey pads are MUCH lighter and easier to transport.  On my own and with an injured hoof, I was grateful for the lightened load.

7.  While we’re talking hockey. . . . . I would be remiss if I didn’t share my thoughts on the USA/Canada gold medal game.  First and foremost – what a great game!  My heartfelt congratulations to the Canadian team and fans.  Job well done.  Ryan Miller, the USA goalie rocked the games and reminded our young goalie that things don’t always work out.  Even the best of the best let in goals.  It was a good, although painful lesson all around.  To John Quick – 3rd goalie on the US team and former goalie at UMass right here in Amherst – congratulations.  We were all thrilled when our hometown hero made the team and although he only had limited playing time (another good lesson quite honestly) it was exciting to know he was a part of  the Olympics.

So now we turn to 2018.  Why not 2014 you ask?  Well, those games will be fun to watch, but as J1 and J2 see it, 2018 is the first year they will be eligible to participate.  It’s unlikely but there’s nothing wrong with dreaming and trying.  I’m certainly not about to discourage them 🙂

I”m sure there are a few other loose ends I’m forgetting, but I’ve covered a lot of ground.  Please leave a comment and let me know how your Olympic knitting turned out!


Ready, Set, Knit #165

Monday, February 22nd, 2010
Share Button

Hi Everyone

This week on Ready, Set, Knit we opted not to have a guest.   Pixie has missed a couple of weeks due to illness, so this week and allow Pixie a chance to catch up on our Fearless Finishing discussion.

Steve & I discussed some new yarns and happenings at the shop as well.

New Yarns

Pashmina from MadelineTosh
Silky Wool from Elsebeth Lavold (6 new colors)
Manahattan from Prism

Cotton Multicolor from Blue Sky Alpacas

Just a reminder, Steve & many members of our team will be at Stitches West later this week.  Be sure to stop by and visit us, we’ll be in Booths 701-709 & 800-808.  I won’t be making the trip out this year.  End of term activities for the kids at school, plus I don’t think my foot is quite up for all the Stitches West can be!

You can listen to Ready, Set, Knit! via our website or you can download the podcast on iTunes.



West Rocks!

Thursday, March 5th, 2009
Share Button

Hmmm – it’s Thursday already and I swear it was just Monday and we were all flying home from Stitches West.  Some of us had better luck with that than others – I made it in only a 1/2 hour late, the gals were pretty much on time around midnight.  Steve & Pete – well, they had to get brand new flights on a completely different airline and Steve rolled in around 3am, but at least he was home.  We heard one of our associates spent 23 hours in the Philly airport and finally just gave up.  Let’s hope this was winter’s swan song.  We’ve all been beaten into submission and are yelling “uncle” at the top of our lungs.  Please Mr. Winter – it’s time for you to take a vacation or at least go bug another hemisphere!

Okay – enough about the weather.  Let’s talk yarn!  Stitches West was a blast as always!  It’s the largest of all of the Stitches shows and my personal favorite.  The facility is great and I love getting to see our west coast friends.

I have two short video clips to share with you.  The first is from Friday morning – a quick tour of the booth and a check on the knitters/crocheters waiting to come into the show.  I hope this gives you all some perspective of Stitches:

Next up is the morning after.  A shot of the booth on Saturday morning AFTER the insanity of Friday:

It was a great weekend.  Thanks to everyone who came by to visit and even if you didn’t shop with us – thanks for making it to the show.

If you were at West – let me know in the comments!  What did you think, what did you buy?  If not – are you coming to South?  I’d also love to hear what you are working on!  Any chicken knitters out there??


Headin’ Off To San Francisco. . . .

Wednesday, February 25th, 2009
Share Button

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.


Weaving in Some Loose Ends

Tuesday, February 24th, 2009
Share Button

Whew!  The blog has been a hopping place recently!  Thanks for the continued feedback on the videos – more to come there and I’ll continue to work to improve their quality. 

Steve and I are headed west this week – to Stitches West to be exact and I’ve got several loose ends that I haven’t had the chance to blog about over the past couple of weeks, so I’m going to toss them all together here in this post.  Let’s jump right in!

1.  Aussie Wildfires – I cannot imagine anyone who has not heard of the devastating wildfires that have rampaged in Australia.  We have many, many customers in Australia, one of my favorite podcasts, Sticks and Strings, is based in Australia and hosted by David Reidy and our warehouse manager Nick is originally from down under.   It has been a very worrisome time.  There are many efforts going on, most of which have been neatly summarized here on Ravelry and also here by the lovely Suzanne.  Times are tight all around so if any of the initiatives suit you, I encourage you to help out.  If not, just send some good thoughts and vibes Down Under as I am sure they will be appreciated too.

2.  Knitting in the news – a report via the BBC came out this past week that indicates that knitting, along with other activities such as quilting and reading can help delay the onset of memory loss.  So, just like keeping ourselves moving at any age, exercising our brains can have a positive, long-term affect!  Are any of us surprised?  No, but it’s nice to have the validation.

3.  Interweave Press announced a new on-line community for hand-spinners earlier this month.  I am not a spinner and I will honestly tell you I haven’t spent much time on the site.  If you are a hand-spinner or fan of Spin-Off magazine, I encourage you to take the time and check out the new site and community.  I’d love for folks to report back in the comments their thoughts!

4.  Just a reminder, there are a few days left on the contest we are sponsorign on KnitPurlGurl’s site!  If you haven’t visited her site, please do so!  Also, her blog post today is very interesting and I’d love for you all to give some feedback! 

5.  I never did give much of a TNNA recap, other than the weather reports.  Sorry!  I’m sure most of you have read accounts of the show on other blogs, so I’ll refrain from rehashing.  I did want to share this photo with you.  Steve & I saw this on our first day and it just made us giggle:

The car wasn’t parked in a spot that would make us think this was a vendor – which is even funnier from a yarn point of view 🙂

Then there’s the beauty of Malabrigo:

6.  For those of you who listen to the podcast, Steve has been lamenting about the size of the snow piles in our parking lot.  He wanted to share this with you:

Looks like this:

It has been a tough, tough winter.

7.  We have a cool new event that we’ve added to the schedule.  I will blog in more detail about this, but I wanted to get it out to everyone in the area.  Barb Parry, owner of Foxfire Fibers and the most pampered flock I’ve ever known will be at WEBS on Saturday, March 21 from 10:30-5:00 with a trunk show of her yarns and garments.  She does several regional sheep & wool festivals (including Rhinebeck) and sells her yarns on her website.  For the first time, she’ll be at WEBS with many of her yarns available for sale.  You can talk to Barb directly about her process, the sheep and more!   What makes this event even more special is that she’ll be hosting a slide presentation at 11:00am about the Adventures in Yarn Farming – a peek at the secret life of sheep and the lengths to which a shepherd will go – all for the love of yarn!  Special prize give-aways.  I didn’t even realize there would be special give-aways!  Awesome!  Barb is a dear friend and her yarns are just spectacular.  I encourage you to make some time on 3/21 to come in and visit with her!  If the date simply doesn’t work, Barb will be a vendor at our annual Fleece Market on Saturday, May 16th.  You can check her yarns out at and keep up with life on the farm with her Sheep Gal Blog.  Just wait – we’re only weeks away from the Lamb Cam!

8.  Two of our dearest customers were in the other day and as they were visiting in the back offices (yeah – I mean it when I say they are dear to us – they get free hall passes) I noticed they were each carrying armloads of a new closeout Poems.  They stoppped by our office to chat and I asked what they had going on and the lovely Mary showed me this:

Are you gasping?  You all better be gasping at the beauty that is this bud of a project.  Just look at what Mary is turning this yarn into!!  Just a basic crocheted hexagon recipe, finish each hexagon leaving a long end and join each finished hex as you go.  Not necessary if you prefer the finishing all at once.  Mary is a pro and opts to join them as each is finished.  Poems is a lovely yarn – we have some discontinued colors for $3.99 a skein.  I have no idea how much an afghan will take, but I’ll keep you posted (and maybe even do a little math for you all as well and give you an estimate).  For those of you thinking “Bah, crochet, I don’t crochet”, well you could if you wanted to but if you still resist, there are many a knit square options or even a Log Cabin with a couple of complimentary colorways. .  . now I’ve got you thinking, don’t I?

There.  Done.  Ends woven in. Blog Post finished.  Thoughts, questions, comments?  Better yet, what are your loose ends this week?

I’ve got a Stitches preview coming tomorrow!  I’ll also be doing my best to update from the show.  Plus – just wait until next week – we’ll be ruffling our chicken feathers in a big way!


Just Back

Monday, February 25th, 2008
Share Button

I’m just back from Stitches and about to crawl into bed. I wanted to make a quick blog post to say a great big THANK YOU to everyone who visited our booth. It was an absolute blast seeing old friends and making lots of new ones. I’ll have a complete wrap up with some pictures and such in the next day or so. I took some video which I am hoping to be able to add as well!

Thanks again to everyone for making the trip so much fun for all of us!


But I Still Haven’t Seen a Moose!

Monday, February 18th, 2008
Share Button
Thanks to everyone who emailed and shared in the excitement of the upcoming Harlot event. I’ve made the registration link live on the previous post. Just remember – if you are registering a group of folks, we need everyone’s name and contact info. There are lots of details to still be coordinated and we want everyone to be kept in the loop.
In the excitement of all things Harlot, I completely forgot to post pictures from our event with Wenlan. This was one of those events that we knew would be fun and not overwhelming, but we had no idea how AWESOME it really would be. For those of you who missed it – shame on you! It was simply one of the loveliest events. Wenlan was charming and funny and entertaining and very informative about her life as a fashion designer. We learned a lot about her view of garment construction and saw how beautiful her garments are when worn. Most importantly – how beautiful they are on different body types! Here are a few pics:

The ultimate star of the day has to go to Milan:

She wouldn’t pose for me, but for Jackson and Jonathan she was workin’ it! Thanks to our friends at Classic Elite for making this event happen and to Wenlan for making the trip up from NYC.
That’s it for events for awhile – at least in-store. Next up for us is Stitches West! The show is this weekend, February 22-24 at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Show hours are 10-6 Friday & Saturday and 10-4 on Sunday. If you are already registered, there is a special shopping night on Thursday from 7-10pm. We will be in booths 701-709 and 800-809. That’s 10 booths full of yarn, garments and lots of fun and inspiration. We’ve got 14 folks in tow with us – the biggest contigent we’ve ever brought west. Be sure to stop by, say “hi” and stock up on yarn at incredible savings! We’re especially excited to be brining our own Valley Yarns with us again, including our brand new Colrain Laceweight. We’ll have most of our garments with us as well.
Lastly, we took a quick weekend trip up to Maine with the boys. It was part business and part family escape. It’s been so crazy here that we just felt like we needed to hang with the kids before taking off to California. What’s wonderful about what we do is that no matter where we go, there are knitters:

This wasn’t the only sighting we had, but the only one I was able to capture.
We took the kids to Delorme where we saw this:

Jonathan is a huge geography fan so he thoroughly enjoyed this visit. We also visited here:

I know it needs no further explanation.The only disappointment of the weekend comes from Jonathan – he never did get to see a moose 🙂

Can’t wait to see all of our West Coast customers later this week (and Teri from Hawaii – please bring warm weather Teri!).