Monday, March 28, 2011

Totally epical.

Ahhhhh...another Hot Loops Wall has debuted! That makes 12 so far. And though this round has been the smoothest yet, and we have a spectacular new wall (and Spring-fashion-infused online store) to show for it, I also have one exhausted husband, two crazed dogs, three stir-crazy kids and one horrifyingly messy house. Please, nobody call "Hoarders."

I hope you will agree it was all worth it. Here is a taste:

So, without divulging too many trade secrets, here is how it all works. In the fall, I start meeting with reps, looking at what's new for Spring in the way of yarns, projects and fashion in general. I go to market in California to see the latest and greatest first-hand. I also take a look at the runways and the top fashion retailers (oh yes, this requires some hands-on shopping time - I do it all for you hehe). Then, I choose the "big 16" - the designs that will make it to our coveted Hot Loops Wall.

The idea of this wall started back before Loops, when I had three bambinos under the age of 5, no ravelry, and absolutely no time to spend 3 hours in a yarn store looking for something to make that I might actually wear. Wouldn't it be great, I thought, if I could run into a store and they would magically have the yarn, the pattern, and the knitted item all right in one place? So I could grab it while carrying my drooly baby on my hip and make it back out the door, with time to spare for a diaper run to Babies R Us?

Voila! Two years later, Loops and the Hot Loops Wall were born (ok, it wasn't exactly voila, there was lots of sweat and cash and grinding of teeth, but you get the idea).

Fast forward to today. I am blessed with 19 fabulous Loops Troops who help knit (and crochet) up the items, often even designing entirely new Loops Original patterns at the same time.

Then, I happen upon this gorgeous Russian model (who happens to be married to my daughter's tennis coach, what's this goddess doing in Oklahoma of all places?), and she agrees to model. She also happens to bring her makeup artist/stylist mom and adorable daughter who is exactly the right size for our child's Hot Loops hoodie. The "glamorous" photo shoot is at our house, where she changes outfits in the dining room.

...and I just happen to be married to this amazing man who is willing to devote an entire sleepless week to shooting, retouching, outputting, trimming and coding all of this stuff to create the wall AND get all the designs up on the Loops site, all in the same weekend.

Did the dogs go crazy wanting his attention? Yes.

Did the kids go largely unsupervised and bored? Yes.

"Totally epical."

Did we wind up with a rockin' Hot Loops debut party? You betcha.

You see the coolest knits at a Hot Loops party:

We had two very young knitters in attendance, including Cassidy's new baby Miss Cora (as displayed by Ms. Holly):

Here were the awesome party favors - mildly profane stitchmarkers!

Now without further ado, here's the link where you can check out all 16 Hot Loops project - plus a bonus project, Pesapallo Vest.

Epical. Totally.

- Shelley
shop online at

Monday, March 7, 2011

Feeling bubbly.

Here's a quick update on the long lost Bubbles Scarf.

Jane, God bless her sweet soul, has finished knitting yet another gorgeous Bubbles scarf as a store model. Since the original never turned up (even after our All Purls Bulletin), she offered to make another. Per the suggestion of many of our readers, we decided to give Jane the reward - a $100 Loops gift card.

The scarf - and the yarn and pattern to go with it - are now on display at Loops Utica. You must see (and possibly knit) this famous neckwear for yourself! It is really gorgeous and so very soft.

Thanks, Jane!

- Shelley
shop online at