Friday, May 25, 2012

From My Project Bag

I emptied my project bag to find a set of needles and these are all the projects that are in my bag right now.  I am knitting:

The Fargo Sweater by The Fibre Co using Orgaink in Highlands.  This is a VERY yummy yarn that is amazing to knit.

fargo sweater
Also From the Fibre Co, The Tupelo Shawl using Canopy Worsted.  Another super soft yarn from The Fibre Co. This shawl is knit using the intarsia method for the color work on the edge of the shawl.  It's a bit fussy working with the three balls of yarn, but the end result is definitely worth it.

tupelo shawl
I must be on a Fibre Co kick, because I am also knitting with Road to China Light.  I am using it to knit up the Oak Grove Mitts from Never Not Knitting.  I love this pattern with the oak leaf and this yarn is perfect for the pattern.  Growing up in Iowa, we had oak tree lined streets, so there is a little nostalgia here.  

oak grove mitts
I started the Firefly Scarf in a class I taught last week.  This time I'm knitting it using Panama from Rowan.  A customer choose this yarn for the pattern and I knew I wanted to use the yarn if I ever knit it again.

firefly scarf

My niece's birthday is coming up and I am knitting her the Liesl Kerchif, the perfect accessory for her sweet little face.  I am using Lorna's Laces Solemate.  I got this yarn at TNNA market in January to try it out.  It's made with merino, nylon, and outlast.  It's a great shawl yarn, come by the shop and give me your opinion.  Maybe you will see it on the shelves at Stash someday!

liesl kercheif

Call me crazy, but there is also two skeins of Filigran Lace weight in my bag waiting to become some kind of shawl.  I'm thinking I would like to try one from "Juju's Loops"

juju's loops
Now it's your turn, tell my what you have on your needles...

2nd Annual Amigurumi Contest Begins!

Amigurumi Contest Rules

Amigurumi: The word is derived from a combination of the Japanese words ami, meaning crocheted or knitted, and nuigurumi, meaning stuffed doll.[1]Amigurumi are typically animals, but can include artistic renderings or inanimate objects endowed with anthropomorphic features.

Knit or crochet amigurumi contest rules:

1.    You may use any amigurumi book or single pattern for your project.  You may also make up your own amigurumi using the pictures in your head.
2.    Supplies for your amigurumi must be purchased at Stash to be entered in the contest.  Upon purchasing your supplies, please let us know you would like to participate in the contest and we will help you fill out a registration form, which will include your pattern source, project supplies, and receipt of purchase
3.    The final day to turn in your amigurumi will be 4:00 p.m. Monday, June 18th…NO EXCEPTIONS.  Your amigurumi will be tagged with a number to identify for voting.  
4.    You will receive a coupon for 15% off your next yarn purchase at Stash when you bring in your amigurumi.
5.    All Amigurumi will be on display at Stash, on the Blog, and on Facebook starting Monday, June 18th thru Monday, June 25th.
6.    Voting will conclude on Monday, June 25th at 4:00pm… NO EXCEPTIONS.  Your Amigurumi will be returned to you after the contest.  Please pick up your Amigurumi by July 10th.
7.    Voting: When you vote you will receive one entry into the "voters drawing"  each time you vote one in each of the following locations:
* At Stash with each purchase during the voting period
* Once on the Stash Blog
* Once on the Stash Facebook page
You get a chance to vote, and be entered in the "voting" drawing each time you make a purchase during the voting period.
8.    The winners of the Amigurumi contest will be announced at the Needle Arts Night on Thursday, June 28th.  You do not need to be present to win, winners will be posted on the Stash Blog and Facebook.
9.    Yarn prizes will be awarded to the Amigurumi winner as well as a "voter" winner.  Details on the prizes will come soon!
10.  Sorry, no reentries from previous Amigurumi Contest!

Please call with any questions: 303-660-YARN  or email:

Need inspiration?  Stash has Amigurumi books and patterns galore.  Stop by and we will help you with ideas and pattern support.

Stash also has black safety eyes for your Amigurumi!

Brother Can you Spare Some Yarn?!?
2011 Amigurumi Contest Winner

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

The Importance of a Gauge Swatch

I just read this article on Knitting Daily and think it is worth sharing...

"So many knitters whip out a few rows of stockinette, keep it on the needles, and measure the swatch to get row and stitch gauge. I used to do that, too, and I always wondered why my sweaters didn't fit well.

Many other knitters don't knit a gauge swatch at all, and they wonder why their sweaters don't fit, too.

Gauge is what all knitting patterns are based on, and it's absolutely crucial to do a gauge swatch when you knit almost any pattern, but most especially when you're knitting a garment.

I know people who don't knit swatches because they don't want to take the time; they want to get right to knitting the sweater. What a mistake, because the evening you spend knitting your gauge swatch can make or break the finished object, which will take many, many more hours to knit.

Swatching is not only crucial to getting a sweater to fit correctly, it also shows you how your fabric will look and feel. If you're knitting a pattern in a yarn that's different from what's recommended, which is the most common modification knitters make, you definitely want to swatch to see what the fabric will look like at the gauge recommended in the pattern.

I've had so many ah-ha moments that come from gauging when I substitute yarns. Sometimes I like the fabric just fine, but many times the fabric is too dense or loose at the pattern's gauge. Sometimes I choose to change the pattern a little bit to accommodate the yarn, and sometimes I choose to change the yarn to accommodate the gauge.

Here are some tips for mastering the gauge swatch:
  • Knit a large swatch. Mathew Gnagy recommends knitting a 30-stitch by 30-row swatch. (Add stitches and rows if you're working with a small-gauge yarn; it really does need to be at least 4 X 4 inches to get an accurate gauge reading.)
  • Before you do any work with your swatch, including measuring it, take it off the needles or bind off.
  • "Brutalize" your swatch. When Mathew mentioned this step it cracked me up. But once he explained his process, it totally makes sense. Mathew recommends stretching, twisting, rubbing, and folding your swatch, which simulates the knitting and wearing process. When you think about it, the knitting of a garment is pretty hard on the fabric. I pull my sweaters out of a knitting bag every evening and then stuff them back in before I go to bed. I pull them into shape for measuring, and I've even had the occasional dog drama with my knitting, wherein my puppy grabs my knitting and runs out the dog door with it!
  • After the brutalization, steam or wet block your swatch and let it dry.
  • Finally, measure the swatch to get row and stitch gauge. Mathew recommends leaving the first and last two stitches out of the measurement of the stitch gauge, because those stitches are usually not the same gauge as the rest of the stitches across a row.
Sounds like a lot of steps, but after years of knitting I wouldn't do it any other way. I've given away too many sweaters that represent too many hours of work, and I'll be you've been in that boat, too."

Get swatching knitters, you too crocheters!

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Summer Kid's Craft Camp at Stash

Stash Summer Kid's Craft Camp

Ages 6-10 (2nd grade - 6th grade)

Join us to craft a little bit of everything!
We will be getting our little hands into
Felting, Finger Knitting/crochet, Hand Sewing and Embroidery!

Join us for all three days or just one!

June 18-20 10-2
June 25-27 10-2

One Day - $60
Two Days - $110
Three Days - $150

This camp is designed to encourage crafting for all ages and skill levels.  We will begin with the basics for everyone and increase skills based on your child's level.  For instance, we will begin with finger knitting, if your child picks up on this right a way and would like to continue with more skills.  We will get them going with a crochet hook and teach them the basic chain stitch.  If this goes well, your child will learn more stitches and the skills to finish a project!

Crafting projects:

Day one: Fun with fiber: finger knitting, crochet, felting fun, friendship bracelettes

Day two: Paper crafts: Tissue paper flowers, pinwheels

Day three:  Needlework, embroidery, hand sewing

To register call 303.660.YARN or download and print registration form here.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Craft Your Stash is coming up!
We have some pretty sweet vendors coming like Spinster Sisters, The Lemonade Shop, word letterpress, chloe and meTactile StudiosSiouxsiequeue'sSimple Sundries, Art by Krista, It's About 3:16, BustlePacks and more….
We will have something fun for the kiddos, The Denver Pie/Cupcake Truck and hopefully really close to the carriage rides.

Hope to see you there!