Posts Tagged ‘Valley Yarns’

Ready, Set, Knit! 329: Kathy talks with Kirsten Hipsky

Saturday, October 5th, 2013
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This week Kathy talks with WEBS Design Manager, Kirsten, about the WEBS Fall 2013 Catalog.

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Kathy and Kirsten talk about some of their favorite patterns from this catalog.

The Foxfire Shawl knit in Charlemont Kettle Dyed and Charlemont Hand Dyed, this shawl would look great in lots of different color combinations.

Valley Yarns Foxfire Shawl and additional color options

They also discussed the Whistler Cardigan, The Basic Crochet Pullover, The Morning Bells Shawl,  The Chandelier Shawl, Papyrus Cardigan and Monarda Pullover

If you do not yet receive our catalog you can request one here.

Steve’s Yarn Picks

Our 10th Annual Knit & Crochet for the Cure event is happening in store TOMORROW October 6 from 1-4pm.

Stephanie Pearl-McPhee, the Yarn Harlot, is joining us to offer two classes the week of October 19th! We’re so excited to have her back at WEBS.

Upcoming Events:

WEBS is open regular hours on Columbus day weekend, closed on Sunday and open on Monday, while you’re here you should check out the Paradise City Arts Festival Oct 12-14 at the 3-County Fairgrounds.

Registration is open for our 7th Annual Bus Trip to the NY Sheep & Wool Festival in Rhinebeck on October 19th – just 2 weeks away! Are you on the bus?

Stitches East is coming up! November 8-10 at the Connecticut Convention Center in Hartford, CT. There are still lots of open seats in classes and the Market is not to be missed!


Ready, Set, Knit! Listeners get ready 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:

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.

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Knitscene featuring Valley Yarns

Wednesday, October 2nd, 2013
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The Winter 2013 issue of Knitscene magazine is out and in it’s pages you will find the Purpureus Shawl designed by Maria Leigh and knit in Valley Yarns Charlemont Kettle Dye.

Pupureus Shawl designed by Maria Leigh and knit in Valley Yarns Charlemont Kettle Dye

What color of Charlemont Kettle Dye would you use?


Valley Yarns Featured in Interweave Knits Holiday Gifts

Monday, September 30th, 2013
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The 2013 issue of Interweave Knits Holiday Gifts is out and we couldn’t be happier. Our own Valley Yarns are featured in two projects!

First up are the Sailor’s Mittens designed by Michele Moskaluk, and knit in Valley Yarns Huntington. Worked from the cuffs up with increases to form the thumb gussets, these women’s mittens boast lively three color patterns on the palms and backs of the hands.

Second is the Southern Cross Afghan designed by Ann McDonald Kelly and knit in Valley Yarns Valley Superwash. This afghan is made of mitered triangles made into squares. The squares are then sewn together with borders, making an interesting and cozy blanket.

Which projects are you excited to make as gifts this year?



Valley Yarns featured in Knit Simple

Thursday, August 29th, 2013
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Not only were our Valley Yarns used for 2 great projects in the Fall 2013 issue of knit simple but one of them is an adorable crochet hat!

The Crocheted Arrows Beanie designed by Janet Brani uses our Valley Yarns Colrain in three rich, fall colors and you only need one skein each of grape jelly, mauve, and rich purple!

Fran Gross designed a simple blanket with great textural details for the Knit Block Afghan using our Valley Yarns Berkshire in a striking shade of Lime green. With just 13 skeins, and over 40 colors to choose from, you could have a bright or subtle addition to your decor with stunning graphic appeal.

What colors would you choose for these projects?

Valley Yarns featured in Twist Collective 5th Anniversary Issue

Wednesday, August 21st, 2013
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We can’t believe it’s been 5 years since Twist Collective debuted. The Fall 2013 issue is out and we’re thrilled that it features two great patterns using our own Valley Yarns! Valley Yarns have been featured in many issues and we’re always excited to see what other designers are doing with our yarns.

First up is the Doverfell Cardigan, a zippered hoodie pattern available in both adult and child sizes.

We love the simple textured stitches that frame the zipper and continue down onto the inset pockets. The adult version is made in Northfield while the child’s version was knit in Valley Superwash DK.

Second is the Ossel dress knit in Valley Yarns Northampton.

This pattern features some gorgeous cables in combination with moss stitch for a body hugging dress that really shows off your curves, and with the saddle shoulder construction those sleeve cables aren’t interrupted at the shoulder.

What’s your favorite pattern from this collection?

If you haven’t begun following them on Facebook yet you may just want to! Twist Collective is celebrating their 5 year anniversary with all kinds of goodies and give-aways.

Ready, Set, Knit! 323: Kathy talks with Sarah Barbour

Saturday, August 17th, 2013
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Guest: Kathy talks with Sarah about one of the new titles from Cooperative Press, Stitching in the Stacks: Librarian Inspired Knits.  Sarah was in school taking course in library sciences when she picked up knitting. She has been designing since 2005 and putting this book together has been great fun for her. The book contains 29 patterns that range from cardigans to shawls, accessories and even skirts.

Sarah designed the Book Woman Jacket, knit in our very own Valley Yarns Berkshire,  after discovering the story of the Book Women; the original book mobiles! Sent out during the 1930′s into rural Appalachia, these women rode horses, or mules, up to 20 miles per day to bring books and literacy into the mountain communities.

Steve’s Yarn Picks

August Sale Yarn Highlights – our End of Summer Sale runs through August 31st

Upcoming Events:

Our Fall class schedule will be live on the website on Monday and arriving in mailboxes soon after, classes begin in mid-September.

Labor day weekend is just 2 weeks away! WEBS will be open normal hours on Saturday, 10:00am – 5:30pm but closed on Sunday Sept. 1 and Monday Sept 2. for the holiday.

Registration has opened for our 7th Annual Bus Trip to the NY Sheep & Wool Festival in Rhinebeck on October 19th!

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The Story Behind the Valley Yarns Collection

Monday, July 22nd, 2013
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This originally appeared in our Valley Yarns 2011 catalog.
Kathy and Steve Elkins, owners of WEBS – America’s Yarn Store, established the Valley Yarns brand in 2004. But the exclusive line existed prior to their taking over the company from Steve’s parents. Read Steve’s story below about the creation of the brand.

What’s in a name?
When Kathy and I took over the business from my parents in 2002, they were already sourcing yarns directly and had been doing so for many years. At that time, they were focused primarily on weaving yarns, but there were several knitting yarns in the collection. Anyone remember Peru, Quabbin, or Monterey? They were branded along with the weaving yarns as the WEBS Permanent Line. It was a functional name, but it didn’t give Kathy and me much to work with in terms of marketing. So we set out to come up with a new name and tossed around a lot of different ideas. We had a long list of possibilities, but we ultimately chose Valley Yarns.

Why where you come from matters
My parents started the tradition of naming yarns after local towns. My three favorites are Prescott, Dana, and Enfield. You won’t find these towns on any modern map as they were flooded to create the Quabbin Reservoir. The Pioneer Valley is where I was born and lived until I left for college, it’s where my extended family has been for a long time, it’s where Kathy and I call home, and most importantly it’s where WEBS has always been. Paying tribute to the local culture by naming our yarns after the lovely towns found in the valley and surrounding hills only seemed fit.

A yarn is born
Bringing a yarn to market is one of our favorite aspects of our job. We work with mills from all over the world. Most often the process starts out with a mill sending us or visiting us with a set of samples. When looking at samples, we can quickly eliminate any fancy or novelty yarns that don’t fit under the Valley Yarns umbrella, any yarns that duplicate what we already have, or any yarns we simply don’t like. We sometimes end up with nothing in our “like” or “need” pile. Other times, we might have two or three, or more yarns that we are interested in looking at further. At this point, we ask for full samples of the yarn. We swatch the yarn at different gauges, test the yarn for wear and durability, and wash the swatches – basically we really put the yarn through its paces. We spend time discussing how any potential new yarn will fit into the line. Naturally, pricing is always an issue, especially in challenging economic times. We may sometimes love and want a yarn desperately, but if the pricing structure doesn’t work, we sometimes have to walk away.

Color my world
Once the base yarn is selected, we then go through the color selection process, which is not as easy as it sounds. We have to consider how the yarn will be used and what we feel is an appropriate palette. It’s important to have an interesting but functional color range that works as well in depth of color as it does in coordination of color.

New kid on the block
Once the order is placed, we finalize a name. Sometimes a name is crystal clear; other times we have to try a few on for size. The label artwork then gets created, and then we wait. We wait anywhere from 8 to 12 weeks or more, depending on lead times from the mill. We usually have some advance bags flown to us so that we can start designing. The balance of the shipment usually comes by boat. When a new yarn arrives, it is everyone’s new BFF, and we all have to remind ourselves not to ignore all of the other beautiful yarns in our Valley Yarns collection.

Valley Yarns Berkshire featured in Stitching in the Stacks

Thursday, July 11th, 2013
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One of the newest collections available from Cooperative Press is Stitching in the Stacks – Librarian Inspired Knits. In that collection you’ll find the lovely Book Woman Jacket, by Sarah Barbour, which is worked in our Valley Yarns Berkshire in the Tan Heather colorway.

It features a cabled, double-breasted front closure and shawl collar as well as moss stitch hem details and pockets to keep you cozy. With over 40 colors of Berkshire to choose from this may just be the perfect jacket for all book women!

What color of Berkshire would you use?

New Valley Yarns Catalog Now Online

Wednesday, June 19th, 2013
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I think out of all of the catalogs we do every year, our Valley Yarns catalog is my favorite. It gives us a chance to really showcase our own yarn line. Kirsten and Sara always do an amazing job with the designs, and this time they do not disappoint!

The photoshoot was held at the Wisteriahurst Museum in Holyoke, MA. Wisteriahurst is the former home of two generations of the William Skinner family, manufacturers of silks and satins. The museum is gorgeous and open for guided tours of the 26-room estate. Visit for more.

The inside and outside of the museum were just stunning. There was also an interesting art installation while we were there! The gardens are beautiful and seeing the wisteria covering the building was just lovely.

It’s always fun to see how the photoshoot and catalog come together, but you won’t just find pretty projects. Kirsten and Sara both have interesting articles, and our WEBS <3s feature showcases Kristin Nicholas. You don’t want to miss that!

If you’re on our mailing list, your copy of the catalog should be hitting your mailbox soon. In the meantime, you can check the catalog out online here.

What’s your favorite new project?

Ready, Set, Knit! 304: Kathy talks with Kirsten Hipsky

Saturday, March 16th, 2013
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Guest: Kathy talks with Valley Yarns Design Manager, Kirsten Hipsky about the new Valley Yarns patterns featured in our Spring 2013 Catalog.

Best sellers at Stitches West were:


Blue Mist Cardigan in Southwick

looks more complicated than it

is and it’s a great standard wardrobe





Burning Branch Shawl in BFL Fingering

Has an easy repeat, looks much more

complicated than it is and works with a

range of yardages.



Hidden Hills Pullover in Northampton Sport has a great neckline with classic, simple colorwork and the Pelagic Shawl, using 6 color of Northampton Sport, is a wonderful update to our Jambalaya Shawl.

There’s also lots of crochet love in this catalog with the Molly Socks, The Michel Vest in Longmeadow and the  Meyer T-shirt in Goshen.

If you haven’t gotten a catalog yet, you can request one on the website, here.

Steve’s Yarn Picks 

Upcoming Events: 

June Hemmons Hiatt, author of The Principles of Knitting, will join our Tuesday morning Drop-in THIS WEEK on March 19th for a book signing and chat. Don’t miss out, register now!

Our 39th Anniversary Sale Starts April 1! and don’t forget about the Tent Sale in May!

Join us at  Stitches South! in the Renaissance Waverly Hotel & Cobb Galleria Centre April 11-14th in Atlanta, GA.

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