Friday, January 30, 2009

This sales rep sucks eggs.

No, this isn't a trash-the-sales-rep blog entry. In fact, Cherry has become one of my favorite reps, partly because she hooked us up with last year's visit from Louisa Harding, and partly because she has nice taste, and mostly because her yarns rock.

This blog is about Cherry's new raw food lifestyle. At our last meeting, she was telling me all about it and I was feeling tempted to convert - until we got to the part about how she gets enough, um, protein.

She eats eggs. Raw. And not in some fancy-schmancy smoothie or anything. She sucks them right out of the shell, wholeheartedly embracing the possibility of salmonella, which "our bodies are full of anyway."

She has her technique down to a science, and generously let me record it for posterity. So, if you're interested in trying it, here is a handy step-by-step guide.

Warning: These pictures are not for the squeamish. If that's you, skip ahead to the next blog entry, which is all about nice, pretty yarns.

Step 1: Crack one end of the egg on your sharpest canine.

Step 2: Turn egg upside-down, and repeat.

Step 3: Suck egg. Resist natural gag reflex.

Step 4: Make sure you extract all the natural goodness.

Step 5: Admire your own efficiency.

Step 6: Repeat 8-10 times daily, or until you begin to make uncontrollable "bok-BOK!" sounds:

- Shelley
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Eenie, meenie, miney, go!

Things are beginning to roll in from our trip to California market, and from everyday ordinary unrestrained purchasing on my part. Which new yummy will you not be able to resist?


New Tempted colors in Good Grrl and Glam Grrl, including a new color that was Stacy's response when I said "Surprise me." Gotta try that more often.

New colors of Cascade 220 Handpaints:

And for the more restrained and/or budget conscious, we got a batch of great patterns from Knitting Pure & Simple. We love their basic sock pattern and their top-down designs (and of course, we're always happy to help you select a yarn that will work!):

- Shelley
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Wednesday, January 28, 2009

To the skaters go the spoils.

Here in Tulsa, we have experienced a rather epic amount of ice - so much so, that no one could make it to the store to open yesterday. But today (Wednesday), Barbara, Terrie and Gene have graciously agreed to strap on their ice skates and slide down to Utica Square to open.

Do I hear all of you trapped moms with cabin-feverish kids at home singing Hallelujah?

As an extra bonus for coming in today, you will find that we have put out the new Rowan Lenpur Linen. Lenpur is the hot new yarn for spring - a renewable fiber made from tree pulp. It is soft and drapey, similar to bamboo, and Rowan has brilliantly blended it with Linen to give it stability. It is very soft and the color pallet is scrumptious. But of course, what none of us can really resist is the beautiful Rowan designs. They've dedicated an entire book to it, which is always a sign that they are onto something.

Let the drooling begin:

Almost enough to make you forget the frozen tundra outside, right?

Loretta is working to get the yarn and books online today - so even if you don't own ice skates or 4-wheel-drive, you can scope it out. Check the Loops online store later this afternoon. And stay warm and safe!

- Shelley

Friday, January 23, 2009

The I-promise-I-wasn't-tipsy-the-whole-time, my-iPhone-just-takes-fuzzy-pictures report from San Diego.

Six of us went to TNNA spring market in San Diego last weekend and oh, what a fabulous time we had. It may appear, from this blog entry, that things got progressively wilder as the four-day extravaganza progressed. But in reality, the first photos are from Gina's high-end camera, and the rest are from my iPhone which is clearly limited in its ability to take a high-resolution photo.

Here we are having a fabulous dinner at Roy's, an Hawaiian Fusion restaurant. Don't ask me how an Hawaiian restaurant comes to be called "Roy's." But there is not much logic to San Diego restaurant names. Another night, we ate at a restaurant that billed its fare as "Global Fusion" - which sounds like another name for Anything Goes.

Here are Gina Y. and Terrie, who spent the entire four days walking around in her signature 5-inch stilletos. I didn't look, but I'll bet she had Ava Gabor style slippers on with her PJs.

Here's Paula, the official Life of the Party, who keeps us feeling extra trendy with her stories from being on the road with the Flaming Lips:

Here's Gina H., my "market angel" who always comes to market, keeps me shopping without dropping and distracts me through bumpy flights.

BTW Dawn's son, George, was on the first leg of the flight out, and when we banked hard, he yelled "We're goin' down! We're goin' down! We're gonna craaaaash!" Speaking of Dawn, she was also at the dinner, but later that evening, her chicken made a reappearance, courtesy of a lovely stomach flu. In this picture I snapped of our attentive but mildly creepy waiter ("Drink up girls, we'll all head to Tijauna later"), you can see shades of what is to come in Dawn's expression. Be prepared, now, here come my cruddy (but remember, not drunken) photos:

Fortunately, Dawn bounced back and, like all of the others, was quite helpful in rooting out new goodies like buttons, rosewood crochet hooks, cool new patterns, luscious new needle-felt silk scarf kits, and...yes...wait for it....YARN! YARN! YARN!!!! It's already started rolling in, along with our big spring orders. So I won't spoil all the surprises. But here are some other random shots from the show. Sunset in La Jolla:

Me and Sally Melville,
...and Sally's wrist warmers from her new book (shameless teaser: huge announcement coming on this in the next week):

Chuck and Robin from Pagewood Farm (so nice - and mmmm...cashmere sock yarn):

Cool accessory bags in metallics (Terrie hearts them):

Hot Skycab guy at the airport (I took his pic when he looked down, but Dawn spotted me! He got a big tip!)

And last but not least...the elusive Ravelry people! Casey, Jess and Mary Heather could not have been nicer, and loaded us down with freebie buttons. Plus, check out the new Ravelry clings on Loops front door windows! How cool is that?

- Shelley

P.S. Ask Paula or Gina H. about this inside joke (not fit to print - this is a family blog):

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Heavy panta-ing.

Hhhuh...hhhuh...hhhuh...(Is that how you spell out the sound of panting? My copywriting skills are being put to the test here...) But regardless, you will be panting to make this Panta headband when you see how cute Holly's turned out, in Noro Cashmere Island:

Holly is teaching a free class on the Panta at 2pm, Sunday, January 25th. Call the store to sign up. Only rule is you must purchase your yarn at Loops!

- Shelley
P.S. New stuff alert! I went a little crazy post-holiday-sale and ordered in a couple dozen new book titles, boatloads of needles, more Berroco Comfort, Cascade 220, Crystal Palace Puffin, Blue Sky Bulky & Cotton (new colors!), Debbyware kits and more. Look for more details in the e-newsletter later this week...or just come in and check it all out for yourself!
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Why you should shop at a yarn store after inventory.

Here's a little secret: One of the best times to shop at Loops is after inventory. Here's why:

1. Everything looks spectacularly clean and tidy after all that counting - very appealing for O.C.D. types (such as myself):
2. We become aware that we have lots of certain yarns, or cashmere kits, or whatever, and they find their way to the 50% clearance section at the back of the store.
3. We are exhausted but deliriously happy that inventory is over, so you will find us even friendlier and more helpful than usual. Case in point, I spent the night before inventory at an all-night TV shoot in West Siloam Springs, Ark:
After going to bed at 7am, then waking at 9am to drive back to Tulsa for inventory, I was not in the mood for lots of questions from the Loops Troops:
However, after 14 hours of sleep, I was re-invigorated and ready to design a project for our Louisa-palooza contest, announced in the last e-newsletter. We are having a contest for the world at large, as well as one for the Loops Troops. Louisa herself has generously offered to jury the contest. First place winner receives a new spring Louisa book and $100 gift card - and there are other prizes too. Louisa will comment on every entry! Deadline has been extended to February 14th. You just have to make it from any Louisa Harding yarns. And all Louisa yarns are 10% off through Feb. 14! And we've built a whole new Louisa wall to inspire you:
I'm making a little girl's dress from Glisten, Sari Ribbon and Kashmir Aran:

Loretta The Show-Off has already finished and submitted her project, a Portia hat in Kimono Angora Pure (I think). Remember, it doesn't have to be an original design - it can just be a creative take on any pattern:

To enter the contest, just email me ( with your photo and yarns used!

- Shelley
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