For our fiber friends in the Northern Hemisphere, winter often finds us burrowed into our homes, or trudging from our house to our car to our office to our car to our house. Here at WEBS, we’re hatching a mystery knit- and crochet-a-long to spice up your short days and long nights. It accomplishes a number of good things: you’ll learn some fascinating new techniques that you’ll use forever, you’ll have something fun to look forward to every month as a new square is revealed, and you’ll have a beautiful keepsake blanket that will be just the thing to use as a wedding gift, a graduation present, a baby-shower goodie, or an early holiday present.
We’ve even picked out four different colorways in our Valley Yarns Northampton for you. Neutrals will go with anything, Autumns are for those (like me) who crave the heathery tones of October orange, green, and burgundy. Jewel Tones are bold splashes of clear sapphires, garnets, and emeralds, and Pastels are deliciously light and baby-friendly. Each month a new knit and crochet technique will be taught by Sara in her classes here at WEBS. Those students will get hands-on help from the fabulously talented Sara as well as the fun of learning with like-minded folks, and as my mother would say, “you might make a friend.”
A week later the square’s pattern will be released online in our blog, along with photos and a technique video so that you can go it alone, if you live too far away to travel to our Northampton store. We’ll be sharing your squares-in-progress on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, and anywhere else knitters pop up to visit with us.
The Banded Yoke Pullover is a set-in sleeve, boat-neck sweater that features a band of simple color-work across the front and at the sleeve cuffs. Worked in easy, and fast half-double crochet, this hip length pullover features slit side seams and split cuffs for a preppy but casual look.
Crocheted in Valley Yarns Northampton, available in forty colors, on a neutral background of natural, the six colors in the yoke band and sleeve cuffs mean you can experiment with all kinds of combinations and use up those scraps of yarn you love too much to give or throw away.
Our newest 40th Anniversary draft is a fun freebie! The WEBS is forty draft from Micala Sidore is a great primer for branching out with your own tapestry explorations and with 40 colors of Valley Yarns Northampton to choose from you’ll have almost endless color combinations to choose from.
Micala says, “Using words as design elements in your tapestry gives you freedom to express yourself in many ways. The look of the tapestry, the words chosen, the “font” created, and the colors can all lend meaning to your work. To celebrate WEBS’ 40th anniversary, I chose to weave the word “forty”, but tapestry can be any word or number or symbol that is meaningful to you.
You also need to consider positive and negative space as you create your design. Remember that you will be weaving a background as you weave your word or number, and you have to think about how the background can enhance or overwhelm your main image. Everything happens in relationship to everything else, so don’t forget to give equal thought to all the elements of your design. I suggest you begin by working with three colors: a ground color, a color for the letters, and a third highlight or accent color. I have used red in the “o” of forty as a surprise accent. Consider the dots of “i”s, the interiors of letters like o, b, d, etc. as opportunities for accent.”
We’re showing off the latest addition to our Stitch Red collection with 462 Hearts of Oak Cardigan. This set-in sleeve cardigan has a wide shawl collar that can be overlapped and pinned closed, or folded over to show off the lovely wrong side of the Hearts of Oak pattern stitch.
We tried on the 36″ size.
We really liked this comfortable cardigan. The collar was a big hit, though a couple of us would shorten the sleeves. This sweater looks great open, or closed with a shawl pin. We also love that a percentage of the profits from this pattern, Valley Yarns Northampton in red, and 452 Hearts of Oak Hat are donated to Stitch Red.
It’s been awhile since my last Valley Yarns on Ravelry post. What can I say? The holidays have a way of making my schedule extra busy. One thing is for sure, you were all quite busy too, finishing up projects over the past couple of months. It looks like Valley Yarns Northampton was a popular choice for many of your projects. Here’s a few that stood out for me that I’d like to share with you.
At WEBS, we’ve ramped up our knitting and crochet and are now in prime gift making mode. Here’s a peek at a few of the projects we’ve been busy with or buzzing about making this holiday season.
Great for Any Guy
There’s something extra special about giving someone a hand knit sweater. Sweaters take more time to make than a scarf, mittens or a hat, and they get worn pretty often. Making a sweater for a man can be a tricky task. It can be tough to figure out just what they would actually wear. I got around trying to figure out what he would like by just asking him! I gave my recipient three patterns to chose from, and then let him pick the color for the yarn.
Cashmere for Someone Special
I needed a special gift but one that was quick and easy. I found it in Dream in Color Smooshy with Cashmere yarn Rain Drops Beaded Socks (free pattern on Ravelry!). I chose color 505 Dark Current and matching beads. With the softness of cashmere, the strength of merino wool and nylon, and colors that blend beautifully these socks are beautiful, luxurious and durable. I planned on making only 1 pair, but I love the easy pattern and yarn so much I can’t wait to begin another pair! > Linda B.
A Whimsical Knitted Hat
The Gnomey Earflap Hat makes a great holiday project. Since it only takes 2 balls of Valley Yarns Cold Spring, it’s an affordable way to pamper yourself or a loved one this season. If you’ve never done stranded colorwork before, don’t fear! This hat features a large and easy motif that flies off your needles, and the earflaps are perfect for cold weather. Warm ears, warm heart–isn’t that how the saying goes? > Emma W.
Feminine Lace Shawlette
Shibui Draper is a sweet little shawlette that knits up quickly with just two skeins of the lovely Shibui Staccato. I really enjoyed knitting our store sample. > Greta S.
Simple and Fun to Knit
I love the twist and the silk slubs of The Fibre Copany Acadia and the slighter than dk-gauge this yarn has to offer. The color choices and combinations are intriguing. Knitting the Katahdin Hat was a treat: not only is it a free download pattern, but it offers an interesting technique for striping in the round, one that I had never used. The stripe sequences were seamless, and no “jog” in the stripe when you change colors. The slight slouch to the design is so current and looks adorable. This hat was simple, but fun to make – you will want to make more than one, guaranteed! > N. P.
Wrapped in Love
Anzula Cloud is lofty and squishy in a lovely semi-solid variegation. The Aecor shawl is worked from the center top down with a knitted on border. The drop-in ladies were ooh-ing and aah-ing over this, so I know it’s not just me! > Cara S.
A Touch of Silk and Angora
Simple stranded knitting and fuzzy, luxurious Valley Yarns Sheffield make this Snow Day Hat and Mittens set a really special winter time treat. Since color work is so visually impressive, I think these would make a great gift for knitters and non-knitters alike. > Kirsten H.
It’s hard to believe, but we’ve been doing our little Valley Yarns critters for a year and we’ve reached the end. In honor of Halloween we have 443 Crocheted Spider and 442 Knit Spider.
These guys are worked in Valley Yarns Northampton. Attach a string to the top and hang your spiders to add a spooky touch to your Halloween. You can stitch a scary face on your spider, or make a friendly spider with a happy grin!
Worked in Valley Yarns Northampton, you can personalize them by selecting your favorite chicken colors, or get crazy and make a bright green chicken! Have fun with it, because that’s the most important part of creating – have fun and do what makes you happy.