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Fun with sock yarn

You know something has staying power when it’s been around a really long time. Take for instance, Regia sock yarn. It was the first sock yarn Betty and Liz brought into the shop and it’s still one of their best sellers. New this fall, Regia has published some adorable pattern books featuring socks as well as the sweetest sweaters, vests,hats even complete outfits for the babies in your life. The books are very affordable at $5.99 each. If babies aren’t your thing then check out the book filled with patterns for gloves, socks, shawls and more for the adults in your world. Regia sock yarn is also very nicely priced. A 50gr ball of Regia, Extra Twist Merino Color sells for 9.50.

We also have some beautiful Hand-dye Effect Regia in many different color combinations.100gr ball sells for $15.95.

Besides being very affordable, Regia sock yarn is very washable and very wearable. Check out the books and yarn the next time you’re in the shop.

What is Amigurumi?

Hedgehog

I’m what I think of as a fairly practical knitter.  I tend to knit things that are useful and that, once knitted, will actually get used.  Sweater vests for my sons. (one son out of three will wear and seem to appreciate them).  Hats for babies, which sometimes the parents actually put on their children’s heads.  Socks, for a select group of people who enjoy the funky striped patterns I knit for them… practical knitting.  So, it was a complete surprise to me that I have found a new passion in Amigurumi.
What is Amigurumi?  It’s the Japanese art of crafting stuffed crochet or knit toys that are usually made into animals, dolls and inanimate objects. Sooo not my thing.  Except it is.  See, I saw a pattern for this cute little red-and-white mushroom… Suddenly, I was nostalgic for the German glass Christmas tree ornaments of my youth.  The mushroom was one of my favorites.  And here was a replica knitted up in yarn.  I simply had to make one.  One became three.  And then I was busily making other little knitted critters featured in the book of patterns I had picked up.  Now, I won’t say it’s become an obsession but I think it’s become a little bit of an obsession.  I made a whole swarm of bumble bees.  Why?  I knew some teenagers who are into that Transformer character called Bumble Bee.  They made me make some.
Oh, and the hedgehog.  Cutest little thing you’ve ever seen.  My mother-in-law fancies them.  She spent some time living in Holland, see, and they would hang out on her back patio.  That hedgehog made the cutest tree ornament. Really, it did.
Oh, and it is a great way to use up little bits of yarn.  Not that I’ve been using up bits of yarn.  I bought whole skeins of just the right colors to make all the creatures I wanted to make. That’s sort of how I knew it was heading into the obsession ballpark.  Well, that and the fact I have an ever-growing menagerie of cute stuffed knitted toys that are neither practical nor useful.  They are, however, fun.  And knitting should always be fun. Don’t you agree?

I bet that got your attention.  But before you start to stress about all the gifts you are going to have to give, I want you to think, for just a moment, about about the gift you’d like to get.  Can you picture it?  Good.  Now lets talk about how we make that a reality.  #1. Experience has taught me that it’s best not to be shy or coy or anything but extremely bold about what I’m hoping for as the holidays approach.  My husband loves me.  But he has no clue about what gift to give me.  This is evidenced by a few of the gifts I have received over the years.  After a few tries at what he thought was perfectly reasonable gift giving he gave up and told me, “Buy what you want, I’ll wrap it up and everyone will be happy.”  To which I reply.  “I won’t really be happy.”  You see, at least for me, part of the joy of  gift giving and getting is not always knowing what is in all those packages.  I do know  because I’m almost always the one who has bought and wrapped all of them.  I want to be surprised.  It’s a conundrum, I know.  I want a good gift but I don’t want to have to buy it myself.  I want it to be obvious to the man who shares my life what sort of gift I am hoping for.  I don’t really want to put a picture of it on the vanity mirror so he sees it while shaving one morning.  Alas, what am I to do?…

Well, I found a solution to this vexing problem.  I filled out a wish list at the Lambs Wool and told my wonderful hubby that he should check it out someday.  Now, I spend a lot of time at the shop, and I spend a lot of time knitting, so really my dear sweet husband should not have needed this kind of nudging but hey, after the  OV glove Christmas,  I was no longer too proud to prod.  That’s my suggestion.  The ladies at the Lamb’s Wool will hand you a form.  You fill it out. Then you  print out directions to the shop and sneak them into your significant others briefcase, lunch box, whatever and leave him a note that says  “Mall Schmall, honey. This year I’ve made it easy for you.  Talk to these ladies.”  Hey, it can’t hurt!

And just in time for the approaching holidays The Lamb’s  Wool is going to be offering some new tote bags. They are a quilted bag, in three different varieties.  There’s the Betty Bag, the Liz Bag and the Lamb’s Wool Bag.  Each features inside pouches just the right size for holding needles, etc.

Stop in and check them out.  You could put them on your wish list.  You know the list that’s going to make your spouse a hero this year.

Dana

It’s that time again.  Time to make a reservation for The Lamb’s Wool’s annual knitting retreat to the Eastern Shore of the the Chesapeake Bay.  Liz and Betty have designed some terrific new classes for this years gathering.  Mind you, that is no easy feat.  After 14 years it becomes harder and harder to come up with something new and challenging.  But they have done it.

First the dates for the weekend:  January 20, 21 and 22. February 3, 4 and 5 and February 24, 25 and 26.  Remember, you don’t have to take a class on the weekend, but since you have two very experienced knitters willing and able to share their knowledge and expertise, it does seem to make sense to try at least one of the offerings.

This year there are four different learning opportunities.    The first involves  working on a neat scarf pattern using short rowing.  I have heard the scarf referred to as a ‘potato chip’ scarf.  It’s a fun design, and probably can be completed on the weekend.  The second class uses the technique of short rowing for shoulder shaping in preparation for a three needle bind off.

For the third class you will create a Knitted Ball.  It’s a great project for using up left over yarn bits.  Basically you knit strips of yarn and then weave them together to make a ball.  These can be used as a child’s plaything, a pet toy or even decorations.  It’s something new and you will be the first person on your block making them.  Trust me.  Betty has pictures of the projects at the shop.

The last class will also be useful for using up odds and ends of yarn from your stash.   It involves creating a Cable Braided Necklace.  but you are not limited to making just a necklace. Using this technique you could make any number of wonderful items, bracelets, headbands, napkin rings…

You can find out more information at the shop about the weekend and  ladies, it makes a very nice Christmas present, if you have a spouse or significant other who might need a nudge in the gift idea department.

A twenty-five dollar deposit will hold your spot with the balance due sometime between the end of December and the first week of January.  It’s $270.00 for single occupancy, $250.00 for double and $225.00 for triple.

Dana

Hats.  To be specific hats  for one year olds.

It all began as a project for our church harvest festival,

and now I can’t seem to stop myself.  The idea was that

I would make 12 hats, one for each month/season of

the year and offer them all as a set in a gift basket to be

used in the auction.   Hats, by the way, are a great

project for any knitter because you can make them

as simple or as complicated as you like.  For some, I

used Kits from the shop.  For others I made a basic hat

and then found a pattern I liked and used a  duplicate

stitch to apply it to the hat.  Depending on the

complexity of the project you can work on them

almost anywhere.  Basic hats are nice for keeping my

hands busy during TV watching, more complicated hats

keep me from getting bored.

These projects are very portable and quick to complete

so there is a real sense of accomplishment.  Plus, I am

having a lot of fun matching the hats to the season and

months.  What are you working on lately?

Dana

 

Flounce is here

It seems the latest craze in the knitting world is

working with yarn that creates ruffles.  We have

gotten in 6 colors of Flounce yarn and are having

fun experimenting with it.  Each skein is $11.99 has

enough yardage for one scarf.  Create you own fun

fall scarf or make one up as a gift.  Stop in the shop

and check out the great selection of colors.

Sure signs autumn is nearly here: The kids are back at school, nights are getting cooler, the days are getting shorter and there are new cooler weather yarns in at the Lamb’s Wool.  It’s time to pull out the larger needles and cast on a new fall sweater or vest.  Or maybe it’s time to put together a list of projects you are considering for holiday gift giving.  Felted items make for quick and easy projects. For some other great ideas, check out the latest projects in Interweave Knits Holiday gifts edition now available at the shop.

Here are pictures of the projects that were entered in to our contest last month. We want to thank all participants. If you did not enter this year there is always next year, so get knitting on that project that you always wanted to do and enter it next year.

HOLD THE DATE!

The Lamb’s Wool is putting together a bus trip to the New York Sheep and Wool Festival in Rhinebeck NY on Saturday, Oct. 15th. We’ll leave early in the morning and return late in the day.

If you are a knitter, weaver, fiber-enthusiast or just fascinated with sheep, llamas and goats, this is one festival you do not want to miss. Besides livestock, there are crafts and vendors galore including some of the most beautiful yarns to be found anywhere. In addition to the exhibitors the festival features book signings, food, entertainment and various workshops and contests.

More info about the festival can be found on the website http://www.sheepandwool.com/

We hope you can join us for what promises to be a fun day. Look for more details in our next newsletter.

Twenty three years ago, May 3, 1988,  Liz and Betty opened The Lamb’s Wool  here on Blaine Street , Lansdale.   My how the time flies……..  The most exciting thing about being in business all these years are the wonderful  friends we have made.  Ann Smith has been one of our faithful students since  January our first year.  Many students have come and gone and many who have left  for what ever reason, have kept in touch.  The same is true of our customers who  faithfully continue to visit and buy.  Liz and I want to thank you for your support.

Betty