Tuesday, August 28, 2012

A Day to Stay Inside.

...at the shop! For the first time in many weeks, the rain kept us inside today. No trips to the pretty stone wall with piles of yarn, and patterns, and other props. Nope.

Instead, I roamed the shop with my camera and looked for pretty.
Fyberspates Scrumptious in lace, sport, DK and aran. 
and bright.
Shibui... we now have all the solid colors of Staccato, and Cima and Baby Alpaca
and colorful.
and variegated colorways of Staccato
and fun.
Just in from Done Roving Yarn - Frolicking Feet and Natural Ewe
and new.
Claudia Handpaints Fingering and Laceweight ready to put out on the floor
and exciting.
Shibui's latest collection, Geometry.
...and finally, I couldn't resist one quick trip outside (with just my camera).
I think the flowers are enjoying the rain!
How did you enjoy the rain today?

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Measure for Measure.

Measure for Measure is the lovely wrap that's been displayed on our back table for the past few months. With the Ravellenic Games behind us, and before we dive headfirst into holiday gift knitting, we're going to tackle this as a knit-along.
we gave the shawl a taste of sunshine for this photo!
a close-up of the jul shawl pin you might need want to close your piece
I've used the word tackle on purpose. The front of the pattern says "not for the faint of heart, this scarf has very fine linen stitch borders and a main field of double brioche stitch. This is not a quick and mindless knit." So true! Not only is the stitch itself a challenge, the wrap takes 1,500 yards of yarn (mostly knit on a size 4 needle)...yep, that's a lot of knitting!
a close-up of the brioche - truly stunning!
Which means we're going to treat this "knit-along" a bit differently. Yes, we're still going to gather on Friday afternoons for fun and knitting and encouragement, and we're still going to share tips & lessons learned here and on Ravelry. But we're not planning to actually knit this project on Friday afternoons. If you've come for knitting on a Friday, you know you need a (somewhat?!) mindless project...or you end up ripping more than you knit! 

Beginning this Friday (and likely continuing through September), we're going to gather for knitting our (somewhat :-) mindless projects and show-and-tell for everyone's Measure for Measure. Please do bring your project to show off your progress, share lessons learned and ask questions (and get them answered).

If you're on the fence about joining in, maybe it will help to see a few colors of the suggested Swan's Island Fingering. Note that it takes three skeins. This yarn is lovely to knit with and it works up beautifully (my recently completed Panoramic Stole is knit in the Oatmeal colorway, same as our shop sample, and same as the photo on the cover of the pattern).
a sampling of colors; we have many more!
I happened to have 1,500 yards of Findlay Dappled (in the Woodland colorway), the Juniper Moon Farm merino/silk laceweight. I've always wanted a lightweight silk scarf so I'm going to use it. I do suggest going down to a size 6 needle for the beginning and ending rows of Linen Stitch; you'll probably need to work more rows, too (I worked 16 instead of the 9 the pattern stated). I'm using size 4 needles for the Double Brioche section (same as the pattern states). And because I wanted more of a scarf than a wrap, I cast on 87 stitches so I can make it longer.
So far so good!  Hope you'll join in, too. The more of us that knit this, the more fun we'll have to share!

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Loving Lace.

Again (or maybe still?!).

Look what's just arrived.
This is Manos Lace, a blend of baby alpaca, silk and cashmere. Imagine how soft that would be...it's even softer. And it's kettle-dyed; the colors are gorgeous. Each skein is 439 yards. A perfect match for Annis , or Swallowtail ...or a host of other projects!

a sampling of the colors...of course we have them all!
Brand-new from Swan's Island, their lace-weight is a 50/50 blend of fine merino wool and tussah silk in a 550 yard skein. That little bit of extra yardage makes this a perfect match for Citron .
Or Juliette's Scarf. This one is so new I couldn't find it on Ravelry or the Swan's Island website...but we do have the pattern in the shop. And I was fortunate enough to see it knit up in person (our rep brought the sample in for us to see today and I had five minutes alone with it to take this photo). Yes, I'm in love....

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Shop Hop the Sixth.

If you saw our announcement on Facebook this weekend, you know the dates have been set for the Sixth Annual Greater Atlanta Yarn Shop Hop. Saturday, September 29th through Sunday, October 7th.

Like Pat commented on our post, yes, it is that time of year again...and yes, Cast-on Cottage is participating for the sixth time!

The rules haven't changed, but in case you don't remember, or this is your first time to participate, here's the run down*:

  1. Purchase a passport for $1 (they're on sale now) - don't forget to fill in your name, address, phone and email on the back!
  2. Visit any - or all! - of the nine participating shops during the Hop week; spend $10 and you'll get a stamp on your passport and an original pattern.
  3. Turn in your passport at any of the participating shops by closing time on Sunday, October 7th.
  4. Check out the Shop Hop blog on October 14th to see if you've won!

Completed passports (those with stamps from all nine shops) are eligible for the Grand Prize - $900 in  gift certificates ($100 from each shop). All passports (even those with just one stamp) are eligible for the 27 other knitterly prizes. Each shop contributes three - and truly, these are worthwhile! Check out our three prizes below to see what I mean!  Please note - even if you don't think you can make it to all nine shops, it's still worth buying the passport (remember, it's just $1) and getting it stamped at the shop - you only need to spend $10 during the Shop Hop week to get a stamp.

So without further ado...a first peek at our three prizes.

A Measure for Measure kit, including the pattern and three skeins of Swan's Island Fingering in the Oatmeal colorway (if you've seen our shop sample, it's knit in Oatmeal...and it's absolutely lovely!)

Four skeins of Shibui Silk Cloud in colorways Camel, Flaxen, Rust and Watermelon to knit the Gradient Cowl (a free pattern Shibui published a few months back).

And last, but certainly not least, an Insouciant kit, including the pattern and four cones of Habu Tsumugi Silk in colorway 38 (wine...and I promise - we picked the color without knowing what it was called!)

*Please visit the Shop Hop blog for more details and remember, the official rules are listed on the passports.