Friday, October 31, 2008

Our Lovely Catarina

We think she's great. Lia put the flowers on her head, I found the t-shirt and made the shawl in primary colors and our Catarina does a great job of greeting all our customers. (One even talked to her for a few minutes, until she realized that this girl is a real dummy.)
On Thursday Lia and Ruth made the sugar skulls, on Friday they decorated them and I worried.
Whenever we do something new, I worry. Who will show up--how will we interact--will we have a good time and will we want to do it again. From the response of our customers today, it seems like a good idea. It's been a tough year for a lot of us and now that the economy has joined the grieving, we might have a very strong turnout. Come join us if you can. I'll post more pictures from our party tomorrow.

The New Garlic?

A very nice lady came in on Thursday. She was happy to shop for yarn while her husband hit the hardware store. While she was checking out her purchases, her husband stuck his head in just to let her know he was there. Come on in she said--he just pointed to the Obama sign in the window and shook his head. "Sorry," she said. "He's one of five Republicans who live on Vashon Island. I'm not a Republican, but he's a great guy."
I assured her that I like Republicans, too, who are fiscally responsible.
We laughed and she went on her way.
I was sorry that I had made someone feel uncomfortable--the best retail shops make everyone feel happy. Later that night I realized that the Obama sign had done something for me. It had kept the Republican away--maybe this is the new garlic for people who are hungry for change.

Monday, October 20, 2008

The Day of the Dead Celebration

Ten years in the shop have shown that yarn brings us together during all of life’s transitions. Together we rejoiced when you created your grandchild’s first sweater, we held hands and cried when your project helped you through an illness, we helped each other find projects to keep us sane in this crazy world. Now we want to acknowledge that death is also a part of life. Join us to listen, to laugh, to eat and to cry. Bring pictures, stories, and food to share. Help us spend the day celebrating life.

Saturday, November 1, all day from 10 am to 5 pm. Come for a few minutes or for the day.

We have never done anything like this before so mistakes will be made including this one. Sue went to Georgetown and brought this beautiful candle to the shop for the celebration. Lia pointed out that this was not a normal Day of the Dead candle, but we felt it fit into the theme of the day.

We also have another more normal candle--to celebrate our handiness.

The Yarn Has Come Home

These are a few of our skeins of Lambs Pride Bulky--but we also have mountains of other yarn. The novelties seem to be gone from most shops but I do have some since I like the stuff--I have always loved the stuff man can create. But most of the buying was in the wonderful yarns which give you great stitch definition and great hand. Silks, cottons, alpacas, corn, soy, cashmere, merinos, bamboo, blends of the above, more washable wools and lots of organics.

We've expanded our crafts to include rolls of wool felt, roving, finished bags you can embellish, new embroidery transfers and lots of kits in crewel, needlepoint and counted cross stitch.

If you can't find it elsewhere, don't hesitate to ask me to order something I haven't thought about since that's my only marketing plan--you tell me what to get and I buy it.

Baby Surprise Jacket--including a class

This is the Baby Surprise Jacket--I'll be teaching this class on Thursday nights from 6-8 pm. The design was created by Elizabeth Zimmerman--back in the 60's. The first time I took this class we had about 20 people in the class. Lynn was our teacher--she's a nurse and just loved this pattern. I was a teacher's helper and I was flitting around so I didn't learn much, but I continued to be a lover of this project because it has such a beautiful finished product. You follow a few esoteric instructions and you end up with some amoebic form which becomes a jacket if you sew two seams together. The buttonholes are also made while you create this wonder so you don't have to worry about boy sweater or girl sweater until you sew on the butttons.

So, this year, while my mother was dying and my daughter was planning her wedding, I decided to return to this project. But, my objects of affection had grown into three year olds, so I didn't need no silly baby jacket. Since I am lazy, I decided to see how a simple substitution of yarn would fit my three year olds. At three stitches per inch, I figured my baby surprise would fit my little twins. After the death and wedding I finished my first sweater with an added surprise--one side had 4 button holes and the other had 6! So I frogged to the point of error (probably the rehearsal dinner) and reknit the baby. Then I made two more just to show I could including the one in this picture which I had to recalculate since the yarn was way too big (2 st per inch). I did all three within ten days so now I'm ready to teach. I did start another one but I have to keep it at the shop and knit when Ruthie isn't around because all she can say is "Not another one of those."

I can hardly wait until she gives me a baby surprise. Sweet revenge.

A Great Class--Little Beaded Bags

This is an inspirational class with a great teacher. Jan Arkava is a weaver and a lover of beaded bags. She has a collection of beautiful bags she will show you as you learn how to make these lovelies.

I took Jan's class years ago--my bag is the top one in the photo--and it was a wonderful experience. You do have to know how to knit and purl, and how to count. Eyesight may help, but the counting is critical. My son Joe, called this bag "Sexy". That was before he had twin girls and an attorney as his spouse. Maybe he wouldn't call it "Sexy" now, but it does have a great hand and, of course, it is a pleasure to make it.

We put up Jan's class schedule right when America was financing Wall Street so we didn't get too many takers. (It's hard for knitters to worry about saving our economic system when we are trying to get perfect gauge.) So now Jan is back and she is flexible. Once we get three of you to sign up, she will patiently teach. Thursdays from 6-9 pm at $80 (which includes all materials including the needles) this is a bargain.