Tuesday, September 29, 2009

I am not making this up.

My daughter was about to leave for school this morning when my husband noticed. "Are you wearing makeup?!!" he asked. Her sheepish grin instantly gave her away. My 8-year-old was wearing eyeshadow.

My. 8. Year. Old.

I decided to let the punishment fit the crime: I would blog about it. I grabbed my phone and took some photos. While my back was turned, she grabbed the phone and erased them! I said, "You can't grow up that fast. You're my baby." She said, "Not for long! Mwahahaha." Yes, the actually mwahaha'd at me. So I grabbed the camera again (and by the way she's not allowed to touch my phone for the rest of her life).

That is a story I could NOT make up. But I did make this up:

This is my Purple Rain scarf made from Tilli Tomas Plie (100% plied silk) and the new Cleopatra (100% dupioni silk ribbon strung with large European glass beads). This pattern is free with yarn purchase and takes just one skein of each yarn. I love the ruched effect achieved by using the wide ribbon on smaller needles. We have the Cleopatra in 5 amazing colorways - this yarn is not online but call or email us and we can put a great color combo together for you!

Meanwhile, Annie S. of RoseKnits fame has made up a new series of her Box Bags exclusively for Loops, with a cool "Loops Blue" zipper and lining. I'm toting my Featherweight Cardi around in my bag and lovin' it.

Also new this week: A shipment of Schaefer Esperanza (chunky hand-dyed alpaca in a mega-skein) and Schaefer Nichole, a new superwash sock yarn. Plus new colors in Cascade 128 Tweed, which has been flying off the shelf:

Now that I have bared my soul, I think the only thing that might help me feel better is if ya'll post comments with your own Child Challenges. Feel free to make it up! Mwahahaha...

- Shelley
shop online at loopsknitting.com

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

We now interrupt our regular programming.

I'm not the best Twitter tweeter in the world, but I do try to check my Twitter feed from time to time...and recently I ran across an adorable photo of a quilt made by Sarah, one of our longtime Loops customers. Seems Sarah has been holding out on us...I had no idea she was such as quiltmaster. This particular quilt had been made from a child's infant clothes - and I have been saving my kid's clothes for just such a "someday" project.

I don't quilt, but I thought I might learn someday. Then I opened a yarn store and, well, the rest is fiber history. But who could I possibly trust enough to hand them my children's keepsake clothing and let them take sharp scissors to them?

I trusted Sarah. And I am sooooo glad I did.

This is Sam's quilt, and my girls will also be getting one for Christmas. Shhhhhh this is a big surprise. Look, I even had the t-shirt the O.B. gave us when he was born:

Is it any wonder my macho hubby teared up when he saw this??? If you are interested in having Sarah make a quilt for you, get in line! Her waiting list is growing, but you can reach her here on Ravelry (search people for "sewsarah.") See, she even made her own little tag for the back:

And now back to our regularly scheduled yarning...I put all of the Rowan Cashsoft and Cashcotton on clearance today, 50% off. Scope out the clearance area - this deal is just in-store. There is also some Louisa Harding Castello, Berroco Love It, 100% cashmere, and tons of other goodies back there...plus loads of pattern books and magazines.

I spent the whole day re-organizing our stockroom. Thatsa lotta yarn! And it's all alphabetized in full OCD grandeur:

Found a couple things to put on sale in our online store: Berroco Mica is now 30% off, as is Debbie Bliss Eco Cotton. Get it while it lasts!

- Shelley

shop online at loopsknitting.com

Monday, September 21, 2009

A high-KAL post.

This post has zero calories, but is high in delicious fiber.

A little KAL (Knit Along) has popped up on the loopalicious group on Ravelry.com, and has lots of people playing along. Many of us (myself included) are KAL "virgins" so it should be fun, and low-pressure. We're doing the Featherweight Cardigan by Hannah Fettig. It uses tiny yarn on not-so-tiny needles to produce a super-light fabric.

I'm using the Alchemy Juniper sock yarn and am really loving the look.

As you can see, I just divided for the armholes. If you've ever done a top-down, you know this is a momentous occasion, as your number of stitches is instantly and dramatically diminished (in this case, from 324 to 176)and then it really feels like you're flying along (even on fingering-weight yarn)!

I'm keeping this project in my new Box Bag from RoseKnits, in an exclusive Loops fabric combo of black/white dot with "loops blue" zipper and lining. I love that I can carry this by its handle, or pop it into my handbag and know my project is protected from my evil carkeys.

While I was shooting photos, Lucy and Sandy became aware that I was outside, sitting on the ground, which of course is perceived as an open invitation to jump on me, and compete for the opportunity to lick and sniff me.

Fortunately, they found something in the yard that smelled even more interesting:

Meanwhile, Cassidy is making some nice progress on Klaralund, her first sweater, in Noro Silk Garden:

Here is what Cassidy had to say about her progress:
So, my Hubby, Matt has been away for the past ten days. He finally made it home last night from the beautiful Colorado Rockies and, let me tell you, I could not be more happy about it!

Life is a little bit difficult when you have a 1-year-old and 2-year-old to chase around.

However, despite lacking the other half of my mom-and-dad dynamic duo, I managed to cast on and begin my Klaralund. Something about this yarn has me feeling like a future Noro addict. It’s super-easy to knit, and the colors are just beautiful. Kind of like a Colorado sunset.

The Klaralund pattern gives you a lot of mindless knitting time. I like to work on mine while watching America’s Funniest Home Videos. It’s easy to follow and uses only a couple of different techniques, which is perfect for me because I have to put it down a lot to pull whatever my son has picked up off the floor out of his mouth!

So, now that Matt is back and helping me with the daily grind of munchkin-care/laundry/cooking I’ll be able to knock this thing out in no time! More to come soon! Cheers! - Cassidy

Want to join me or Cassidy in our KALs? Come by Loops, call or email and we'll help you find the perfect yarn!

- Shelley
shop online at loopsknitting.com

Monday, September 14, 2009

Out of the Boo.

Last week, I got a surprise email from our friend Anna of mochimochiland fame. Anna, the Queen of Cute, is coming to Tulsa at the end of September, and has offered to teach a class on her adorable Boo the Bat. This boo-tee-ful little bloodsucker would make an adorable Halloween surprise for the child (or the Childish) in your life.

Take the class and you'll learn to knit in the round using double-pointed needles, how to pick up and knit stitches, and how to seam using the mattress stitch. The project calls for worsted-weight yarn, such as Cascade 220 Wool in colors. And it's so quick, you'll have time to make a bevy of bats by Halloween!

The class Tuesday, September 29 from 6-8pm. Cost is just $29 and includes the stuffing and plastic eyes. To reserve your spot, call 742-9276 or email shelley@loopsknitting.com.

- Shelley

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

F.O. update.

As a follow-up to the "favorite projects" chat we had last night on ravelry.com, here are some pretty Finished Objects that have been spotted around Loops this week.

Sherry just finished up this Whisper Cardi from the spring Interweave Knits Magazine. She made it using just 2 skeins of Classic Elite Silky Alpaca Lace. This sweater is whisper-light and the yarn cost less than $20!

Kim is making the Spud & Chloe "Bumble Up Scarf" using Blue Sky Dyed Cotton instead of the bulky Outer yarn called for in the pattern. Love, love this design! Great job, Kim.

Joyce came in to buy some yarn and casually plopped her latest felting creation on the counter as she rummaged for her credit card. Check out this stunner! I think she used two separate Noni patterns - one for the bag, one for the flowers, which are made with Tilli Tomas Flurries, a beaded merino that felts!

Kristin and her mom both fell in love with this Tilli Tomas ruffled-neckline top. Kristin finished hers first, but mom Diane was right behind her. Both mom and daughter are amazing knitters - and Kristin's daughter Amy knits, as well. A 3-generation knitting dynasty!

This one has been in my photo file for awhile...Gina Marie made this beautiful Serenity cardigan for her daughter-in-law, LiJie. She used Rowan Summer Tweed and the pattern is from the Rowan Studio Book #15:

After searching high and low for the designer of the beloved Wonderful Wallaby pattern, we received the pattern this week...which inspired Gene to finish up his Wallaby that he began months ago in Berroco Love It:

This pattern has sizing for all ages. We recently clearanced the Love It (Berroco discontinued it, sadly), but it would also be great in Berroco Pure Merino, Cascade Superwash or Araucania Toconau. Come in and let us help you choose a yarn!

And last, I have to show off the Campus Scarf from the book "Scarf Style," which I just finished in Kathmandu Aran Tweed - this was to be a Christmas present for my son last year.

Better late than never, right?!

- Shelley
shop online at loopsknitting.com

Cassidy and Klaralund.

Hey everyone, meet Cassidy, the newest addition to the Troops.

On our first day to work together, Cassidy mentioned that she would like to make her first sweater soon. I had just run across a great pattern, Klaralund, from the "Cornelia Tuttle Hamilton Noro Book 2". This pattern was also just reprinted in the new book, "Noro: Meet the Man Behind the Legendary Yarn."

This pattern caught my eye on Ravelry because there are more than 400 people making it (including Lori K's Klaralund, shown below), and because it is shockingly simple - making it a great first sweater pattern.

The Klaralund pattern has 7 sizes ranging from 34" to 46" bust. It takes just 7 skeins of Noro Silk Garden for size S. Cassidy chose the very popular Color 84:

Because she has a degree in English and loves to write, I asked Cassidy to write a bit to introduce herself and her sweater project:

"As the only spider that I have ever been able to tolerate once said: Greetings and Salutations! My name is Cassidy and I am the newest member of the Loops Troops. I’m super excited to be joining the team and have a feeling that the shop is always going to make me feel like a kid in a candy store…

I find the best way for me to introduce myself is to do one of my favorite things- make a list. So, here are some of the things that I love:

1. Coffee.
2. Reading a wonderful book that I just can’t put down.
3. My hubby.

Ok, it’s probably a no-brainer that I like to knit. But here’s the deal, I am like a moth to a flame when it comes to baby stuff. There’s something about little, tiny, adorable versions of things that just sucks me in. I have a 1-year-old and a 2-year-old and I love to knit for them. Recently I have been making a lot of stuffed bunnies. Pretty irresistible. But let me confess, booties are the most addictive thing that I have ever made, and they are the item that most often comes off a pair of my needles. I mean, I make these suckers before I even know who I can give them to! So, as I turn over a new leaf with this great new job, I think it’s time to turn the page to a new pattern.

Hence, The Sweater.

With a creative nudge from Shelley I have decided to tackle my first adult-sized garment! I will be following a great little pattern using Noro Silk Garden. It’s a beautiful blend of silk, mohair, and wool in the most gorgeous combination of plum, cranberry, pink, and green. I’m thrilled to be creating this “me-sized” project. I mean, there’s something really cute about a baby in booties, but something even better about a hot mom in a great sweater…


Cassidy and I will be sharing photos of progress on her sweater. If you'd like to join her and make your own Klaralund, call, email or come by and we'll help you choose the perfect yarn.

- Shelley
shop online at loopsknitting.com

Sunday, September 6, 2009

2 legs, 8 legs, 20 different directions.

Lordy, I don't know about you but I have had a heckuva couple of weeks. I didn't need to look up in the sky to know it was a full moon! Preparing for the debut of our new Hot Loops wall is always chaotic. We have 16 people knitting 16 samples, plus all of the yarn and patterns to coordinate and format, plus food, drinks, door prizes, party favors...aak! Plus then there is my ad agency career, back to school craziness (carpool was invented by the devil), my hubby and my own Hot Loops knitting. What's a girl to do?

On Friday, I ran in the door, shouted "HowdyHowWasYourDay?" to the kids, and had 2 minutes to dress for a mixed doubles tennis match. I played the match, won (thanks to a great partner) and rushed home. Only then did I realize I was wearing two different shoes - one was two years older than the other:

My life has been about as "common" as this "Common Garden Spider" that we discovered in our backyard. You can't tell, but this sucker is about 4 inches in diameter:

The only thing creepier than this guy is that we found a second one on the other side of the yard. Anyone remember the movie "Arachnaphobia"?

Um, exactly when will the full moon start to wane?

Meanwhile I will try to embrace the chaos and appreciate the little things, like this pretty scarf yarn we just got in called Sitar:

Have you been looking at the fall fashion magazines? No outfit is complete without a scarf! Make sure that you and your loved ones are sporting hand-made scarves, not something that came out of a box from China.

We also got the new Offhand Bags for fall. These textiles are so stunning and I especially love the size and shape of the new styles. Here's an example:

Offhand also sent us a bonus Deluxe Needle Clutch in Foliage, which will be a door prize at the Hot Loops party on September 12th.

Have you reserved your spot yet? If not, call us at 742-9276 or email shelley@loopsknitting.com.

- Shelley
shop online at loopsknitting.com

Saturday, September 5, 2009


Phew! What a relief to be able to blog in more than 10 words again! Editing myself to that degree is just far too challenging. But I will continue to watch my adjective over-use as I share with you our chock-full selection of new sock yarns.

We just received two new collections from Regia. Both are beautifully self-patterning and very durable. We got the Ireland collection and the Effects collection, which includes Regia's best-selling patterns from the past. These are also great for easy baby sweaters that make you look like a Fair Isle master with just plain stockinette stitch:

Though these were still in the bag when I took the photos, we also received handy posters that show you what your finished sock will look like in each color:

Also we have tons of new colors in the popular Berroco Sox:

And Kureyon Sock in new colors - this stuff has a simply fanatical following:

We also received new colors in Araucania Ranco (semisolid and multi) as well as Itata. So...very...wow!!!! Coming early next week...a new shipment from local shepherdess/dyer, Naked Sheep. Hang on to your socks!

- Shelley
shop online at loopsknitting.com

Friday, September 4, 2009

10-Word Blog Quest: Entry #10!

New books worth a look. Come browse and dream!

- Shelley
shop online at loopsknitting.com