Make lemonade

Can you imagine when running out of yarn might be a blessing?  It can be rewarding to find a pattern that you can’t resist knitting and realizing that you might have just enough yarn in your stash to make the size you’d like.  But working on those projects can be a bit stressful, especially when you are cutting it so close that short sleeves or a cropped length seem to be your only options for success.

Kate is working on a fun FREE pullover pattern designed by Leslie Weber that is giving her the opportunity to making the most of a small quantity of yarn.  Tweedy Stripey is a boxy pullover that calls for three colors of DK weight yarn (the tweedier the better).

© wychfingers
© wychfingers

Many of us at the Spinnery are eager to make versions of our own knowing that our Mewesic yarn will be perfectly suited to this pattern.  Kate has elected to cast on with two different dyelots of our Earl Grey Alpaca Elegance instead.  (Her pop stripe color comes from a skein of Madelinetosh Merino DK in the candlewick colorway).  The variation is subtle but eye-catching in the right light.

tweedy

This means that she’ll be able to get a sweater out of just a half dozen skeins of yarn that aren’t all in the same dyelot, giving her a chance to bust her stash just a bit and make a wonderfully wearable garment with yarn quantities that she thought she’d only be able to use for smaller accessories.

We hope that you are able to find a fun stripey pattern that appeals to you (there are hundreds in the Ravelry database) that allows you to play with your stash and find creative ways to make beautiful projects with yarn you didn’t think you could make use of.

A little gift

Sugaring season is almost over here in Vermont which has us all very eager for Spring.  Temperatures are no longer dipping below freezing at night and while we are seeing some occasional snow flurries, the snow drifts are no longer deepening.

In celebration of the change of season, we’ve created a FREE pattern addendum to the very popular Ascutney Mountain Hat & Earwarmer pattern.  With our addendum, you can make a pair of boot toppers that feature that beautiful braided cable.

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This pair was knit up with two skeins of our Weekend Wool.  This crisp 100% wool 2-ply yarn provides wonderful stitch definition to compliment the brilliant color palette.

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What could be more fun that a pop of bright color to brighten up your work boots?

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For those of you who already own a copy of the pattern, downloading the FREE addendum will set you on your way.  If necessary, purchasing a copy of the Ascutney pattern here will provide you with all  the information (and cable charts) that you’ll need.

Before you know it, signs of warmer weather to come will blossom all around us.  We can’t wait!

We’ve made a new batch of Yarn Over!

Because of the beautiful new Sylvan Spirit that we’ve been working on over the past few weeks, we had some gorgeous waste fiber that we couldn’t resist whipping up into a new color of an old Spinnery favorite: Yarn Over.

Each batch of our Yarn Over includes a unique blend of color and fibers as it’s our way of reusing material that would otherwise go to waste.  Don’t you love how leftovers can be mixed up into something fresh and delicious?

 

yarn over 01

In honor of the lunar new year we’ve named this new colorway Year of the Sheep.  And these skeins include a blend of carded wool,  TENCEL® Lyocell and a bit of mohair that all combine to add great drape and stitch definition to your finished knitwear.

(Lyocell is marketed under the trade name TENCEL®, and a natural derivative of wood pulp from cultivated Southern oak and gum trees grown on land unsuitable for grazing.)

Our 4 oz. / 120 g skeins include approximately  155 yards and the gauge varies depending on your needle size with a range of 3 1/2 to 4 1/2 using size 7 US / 4.5 mm needles to size 10 US/ 6 mm needles.

This Aran weight yarn is ideal for sturdy sweaters and outerwear.  Ravelry has pages of pattern suggestions that offer many tempting choices.  Larisa is tempted to cast on for the Fiber Co.’s Hiker’s Waistcoat which should be beautiful in this rich tweedy color.

Many of the Spinnery patterns are tempting the other knitters here in the shop.  Tracy is interested in Libby Mills’ Islanders’ Vest and Kate loves the idea of a Spanish Tunic or the Shawl Collar Snuggly that she can layer over other knits.  Gail’s favorite is the Spinnery Jacket.

What would you choice to work on with this lovely yarn?

We’re polishing a few new “gems”

The production team has had a colorful week as a collection of new yarn has moved from fiber to skein.  As evidenced by Laurie’s color change spool from the carder, we have been working with such beautiful colors that the combination looks a bit like a geode.

color change spool

We are working on a total of five new shades of Sylvan Spirit and we can’t wait for you to see them.  You were among the first to see our new Hematite shade last week, and this week we have some new colors to share.

sylvan

From left to right we have Jade, Agate, Aquamarine and Turquoise. These new additions to the Sylvan Spirit spectrum are going to give you a wonderful palette to play with this Spring.

Our 50/50 blend of Wool and TENCEL® Lyocell  makes a soft yarn with a satiny sheen. You will love its beautiful drape and spectacular stitch definition.  This DK weight yarn includes 180 yards per 2 oz. skein and is a wonderful choice for lighter weight knits that will provide that touch of warmth and comfort we like from Spring and Summer knitwear.

For those of you who are curious, TENCEL is a natural derivative of wood pulp from cultivated Southern oak and gum trees grown on land unsuitable for grazing.

These new colors of Sylvan Spirit are making their debut at Sitches WEST this weekend and we will have skeins available for everyone on our website later next week.  We hope that you enjoy working with this yarn as much as we loved making it!

A new Knit Along as a Valentine for yourself

We are eager to cast on for another Knit Along. We thought that a smaller project with a larger gauge might make for a quick knit that will be done in time to help us stay warm through the tail end of winter.

All of us agreed that Hilary Smith Callis’ Adama cowl pattern would be fun to work on. We spent a few moments this week browsing through our worsted weight yarn options in the shop and we each found a selection that we can’t wait to get started with.

 

© Hilary Smith Callis
© Hilary Smith Callis

Larisa and Maureen both gravitated to our Green Mountain Green yarn. This deliciously soft blend of Wool and fine kid Mohair is going to be a treat to snuggle into.

Larisa loves the Natural Dark color.
Larisa loves the Natural Dark color.
Maureen wants to knit with the variegated color.
Maureen wants to knit with the Variegated color.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tracy decided that the Wintergreen color of our Mountain Mohair would create the perfect match for her complexion.

Tracy loves working with Mountain Mohair
Tracy loves working with Mountain Mohair

 

Kate and Lauren are both eager to work with Weekend Wool.

Kate wants to work with the plum color.
Kate wants to work with the Plum color.
Lauren loves the look of the Blue Jay colorway.
Lauren loves the look of the Blue Jay colorway.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Kate has already cast on and gotten started so that we can figure out if the pattern needs 3 skeins of yarn or can be finished with just two.  She’ll be sharing her findings on our Ravelry Group Page early next week, so be sure to check in before you place your orders.

The rest of us are going to be casting on for our projects on Valentine’s Day (as a little gift to ourselves). Would you like to join the fun?

Do you need a camel sweater for next Fall?

According to style maven Karen Templer of Fringe Association, the new “it” sweater this Fall will be made with camel. She follows many top designers and when they released their previews earlier this month of 2015 Fall Fashion, camel sweaters were abundant. She collected a few of her favorites in a blog post last week.

We just washed and skeined the last few skeins of our beautiful Alashan 100% camel yarn this week. So you may want to act fast and ensure that you don’t miss out.

These skeins of 350 yards of DK weight yarn are deliciously soft. And due to the longer fibers, this yarn (that is close to the soft feel of cashmere) is in fact stronger and less likely to pill. Practical luxury!

camel

And for those of you who are looking for a yarn option that is a bit more affordable, or a different neutral shade that will better suit your complexion, the undyed skeins of our Alpaca Elegance could be a perfect substitute. At a similar gauge, these 180 yard skeins are just $14.25 each.

We have found a few classic patterns that will ensure that your new handmade sweater for fall is on the cutting edge of fashion.

If you prefer pullovers, Ysolda Teague’s Blank Canvas is a favorite of Kate’s. She has knit a total of three! And the #33 Cabled Pullover from the Fall 2014 issue of Knit Simple magazine could be another timeless option.

For those of you who love cardigans you might want to check out Joji Locatelli’s Grandpa Cardigan for a pattern that looks as delightful to knit as it would be to wear.

And of course our selection of Spinnery patterns that are perfectly suited to either yarn are always a safe bet: Amanda’s Romance, Odiorne and our new Passionate Kisses.

We hope that if you are drawn to try our special limited edition Alashan, you’ll be among the last to snap up these beautiful skeins and we can’t wait to see what you make with our skeins for your new fall wardrobe.

Jill Draper makes fun stuff!

Last June, Jill Draper encouraged us to try something new. As one of our favorite custom yarn dyers and designers we were eager to oblige. She wanted to try creating an ombre striping yarn by carding already dyed wool instead of dying finished skeins.

Jill and her Mom brought beautiful wool fiber to the Spinnery in two natural shades and some brilliant dyed in the wool colors in both warm and cool spectrums. We cranked up the machines to see what was possible.

jill draper ombre 01

Here you can see bobbins of her beautiful yarn fresh from the steamer after having been spun.

Just this week, as she was preparing to head to Vogue Knitting Live in NYC she announced on Ravelry and via Instagram that her new yarn was going to be making its debut this weekend!

© Jill Draper
© Jill Draper
1d3dp-o8ute2
© Jill Draper

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rifton is a single ply, fine USA grown and spun wool yarn, approximately 21.5 microns, and lives somewhere between a stripe and an ombré. Because the batch was a first for both us and Jill, the cakes of this beautiful yarn have unique yardages. Jill will ensure that each skein has the yardage noted, please check yardage needed as this is a single batch yarn.

We can’t wait to see what crafters make with these skeins. If you aren’t headed to New York, you may be able to find a few skeins in her Etsy Shop next week.

Our January Sale is off to a great start!

Our month long sale began earlier this week and shoppers have been finding some great deals.  We wanted to share the details with you so that you wouldn’t miss out on the fun.

gms sock

So far our 30% discount on our 2-ply fingering weight Sock Art yarns has been the biggest hit.  We are in the midst of transitioning to a 3-ply version of both yarns that will be available for sale later this spring.  As a result, we are discontinuing the 2-ply Forest and Meadow.

Forest’s blend of 70% Fine Western Wool and 30% TENCEL® Lyocell (a man made fiber created from wood pulp) lends it a distinct sparkle that brings out fancy stitch patterns. We thank the sheep and the trees for producing this lovely fiber!

Meadow is a blend of some of the rarest American-grown natural fibers, 50% super fine kid mohair and 50% Fine Western Wool (a cross between Rambouillet and Columbia sourced from herds along the Front Range of the Rockies). This yarn is elastic, warm and soft with a subtle luster. These hand painted skeins are a tribute to the farmers and animals that produce such excellent fleeces.

Our skeins are hand painted by a friend and local artist Melissa Johnson 5 at a time in a microwave on her back porch.  The colors are mouthwatering and we’ve found that many Spinnery fans want to use this yarn for more than just socks.  It is easy to envision working with this yarn for larger projects such as shawls and lightweight spring and summer knits.

We are also offering skeins of Pink Lilac Cotton Comfort at a remarkable 50% off.  This discontinued color has been a great favorite among knitters and crochet fans looking for skeins for baby knits, when the run of the mill pink or blue won’t do.

 

sabi 03

We also have a great deal on a small quantity of extra large unwashed skeins of Atlantis Mewesic. (Seen above in the Sabi Hat designed by Olga Buraya-Kefelian and knit up by Maureen as a holiday gift last month).

As it happens, a few of skeins of this yarn will be a future prize on BabyCocktail’s KAL that you may want to join.  Thea Colman has suggested pairing the yarn with her Bastille Cowl pattern. Yum.

These skeins include a whopping 280 yards of yarn (instead of the usual 180).  We are offering them at a 15% discount.  These larger skeins could be a great choice for crafters interested in working on larger projects with fewer ends to weave in.

We hope that you have time to visit our little shop before the end of the month.  You’ll find one-of-a-kind skeins in our selection there that are not available online.  We’re also offering all of our in-stock book titles at 20% off.  You may find it well worth a trip.

We look forward to seeing you soon.

 

Happy New Year

The arrival of 2015 has us at the Spinnery looking ahead with new resolutions and intentions as well as reflecting over the past year of projects.  We’ve been looking back through our Ravelry project pages remembering each of the items that were completed this year and what was going on in our lives as those stitches were made.

We thought we would share our favorite projects with you this week.  These may inspire you to cast on for something similar, or get a little bit of new joy out of projects of your own that you are proud of.

 

wonderland

 

All of us at the Spinnery were excited as the first skeins of our new Mewesic yarn made their way through production.  This fall all of us cast on eagerly to play with the new yarn and get a sense of how it knit up.  Eric made a stunning new sample of the Wonderland Gloves pattern using Sandman, Brickhouse, and Evergreen.  The contrasting colors pop beautifully and the dense gauge of the gloves ensures satisfying warmth for your hands.

 

cowl 01

 

Kate used a similar color scheme for her first stranded color work project, Ysolda Teague’s Pyukkleen Cowl pattern.  She found that the stitches just flew along her needles.  By trying something new after years of knitting, she has opened up a whole new world of projects that she is eager to try her hand at.

 

side 02

 

Maureen’s favorite project of 2014 is the Summerhill cardigan designed by ANNESTRiCK (modeled by Kate above).  This beautiful sweater knit up with Spinnery Sylvan Spirit in the Sterling color included her first contiguous shoulder.  The technique results in the look of a set in sleeve with the convenience of a top-down construction.  And with the included lacework of this pattern the result is stunning!

Larisa has selected one of her most recently finished projects as her favorite.  Her Gold Rush Shawl designed by Amy Christoffers is a shop favorite knit up with the rich dark Evergreen color of Mewesic.

 

Gold rush back 02

 

All of us enjoyed the KAL that had us working on this lovely shawl through the holiday season.  It was fun to check in with one another around the “water cooler” and see who had progressed further through the charts.

As you look ahead to 2015 with resolutions or intentions for your craft, we hope that if there are particular projects or some new knitting skills you are eager to master, that we at the Spinnery can help make that happen for you.  Our biannual Knitting Retreats have provided many crafters with a warm and friendly environment to learn exciting new techniques.

And if you are a Vermont (or southern New Hampshire) local, you may  find that our Community Knit Night on the 2nd and 4th Wednesday evenings of every month from 5:30-7:30pm is a wonderfully supportive and nurturing group. Many a new knitter has found answers, suggestions, and other help from friendly neighbors around our work table.

All of us at the Spinnery wish you the happiest of New Years and hope that we’ll be seeing you soon.

 

A treat for you

Several seasons ago we sent a few dozen skeins of our New Mexico organic yarn to our friend Roy Kady in order to be hand painted. We received a wonderful care package this month filled with gorgeous skeins from the Navajo Nation that we want to share with you as a little holiday present.

dine 02

We have small quantities of limited edition Hand Painted New Mexico Organica 100% Fine Wool (Rambouillet) grown in New Mexico and hand dyed by the indigenous Diné (Navajo) community.

Using traditional methods of dying has resulted in a subdued palette of natural tones that reflect the high desert environment of the American Southwest. The skeins are named for the plants used to create each hue.

Even more exciting, part of the proceeds from the sales of these skeins will benefit the artists who painted them, allowing us to give back to the Native American community that is such a vital part of our heritage.

We hope that you’ll take a look at these skeins on our website, or visit our little shop to enjoy the colors in person. They are $15 each and will disappear quickly.