knit1 blog

Things you need to know that you didn’t even know that you didn’t know…you know?

The shop will open on home football game Sundays from Noon – 4 p.m. We like the idea of having Sundays together and agreed to add a little something fun to the afternoon.  We thought about how to describe it and the name above is what we came up with…laughing at our own hilarity!

knitting frustration

This is the deal:  Kathy will unlock knitting secrets in her Sunday Tips sessions.  We will serve a little snack and Kathy will serve up a little wisdom.  Join us on these Sundays from 1-2 p.m. Each session is $10 and you receive a $10 voucher to buy something at the Shop.  Even if you think you know everything that Kathy will say that day…we bet you will be amazed and enlightened about, you know, what you did not know!

The schedule is as follows:

September 18 – Cast Ons – Make it easy on yourself!
September 25 – Bind Offs – Fix that sloppy last stitch, get loose, learn Elizabeth Zimmerman’s favorite, and more!
October 2 – New ways to fix a problem

All Sunday Tips sessions will be demos.  If you wish to get the most from our sessions, bring supplies and simple swatches as listed on the Classes page.

We will announce new classes in October!

Call to reserve your seat at the table – 662.238.2829.

A Tale that is Perfectly Wrong

cropped annie shawlThis is a story for any fiber artist. It is told to amuse and support. It is a reminder that knitting is a process that includes making mistakes, unknitting and re-doing. Mostly it is a creative PROCESS that is as much about the journey as the finale (very zen).  On some occasions we discover the error early enough to correct it without too much agony.  Sometimes we discover it when there is no going back.  Ann taught me how to think about such moments and made me laugh and relax.

Ann – a deeply experienced knitter – approaches projects fearlessly and with joy. She knits for pleasure and for others and her work can be breathtaking. She just finished a glorious Shibui shawl, Spectrum, using Rain and Silk Cloud. The beginning of the pattern is 12 rows of stockinette in both yarns and four rows of Silk Cloud alone. That pattern is repeated 11 times before it changes.  Easy peasy…and so the story begins…

We were at the table when Ann had finally arrived at the 10th repeat. Yay! She was almost ready for phase two of the pattern.  That prompted her to look back at the written pattern.  There was a long, very meaningful pause, a gasp, and then she shrieked,  “Oh NOOOOOOO!”

The look on her face was familiar. I have had that look on my face often. She stood up and stomped her foot several times as we watched in awe and filled with curiosity.  She then utter these words:

“I have done this pattern PERFECTLY WRONG!  It is just PERFECTLY WRONG!!”

Rather than 12 rows using two yarns, she had knit only 10 rows. For the next 30 minutes all she could say is “it is PERFECTLY WRONG”. We tried to soothe her but we also were grateful.  If she could do such a thing then, of course, so could any of us!  And it gave us a whole new way of thinking.

Her knitting was “wrong” in that it did not follow the pattern.  But it is, as you can see in the picture, a perfectly beautiful shawl.  Just not that perfectly beautiful shawl.

We laughed…we cried with her a little…then we laughed more.  Our new motto:  Do it and love it whether it is perfect or perfectly wrong!

stitch markers

Welcoming the Fabulous Rosy Green!


RGW logo

There are many reasons to knit with Rosy Green Wool.  We search for yarns that are special and that have a good story to tell.  That is what attracted us to this wonderful company and its unique yarns.

Rosy Green wools are 100% Organic as certified by the Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS) – an independent and strictly controlled organization that oversees production from animal to yarn.  Each skein bears the GOTS stamp of approval.

Many yarns say “organic” but it turns out that there is no standard for the use of the term and so the focus can be on only one part of the production process.  Further, most organic yarns are available only in undyed shades because the dyeing process can use of substances that undermine the organic properties of the yarn.  Rosy’s yarns are dyed without those substances and come in colors that neither harm your health nor the environment.  Their yarns are created from organically sourced merino and endangered sheep breeds which contributes to the protection of the species.  All of this somewhat dry sounding information actually adds to the very special nature of their yarns..

The company was founded by a young couple in Germany who were in search of a truly organic yarn.  Frustrated by what they found on the market they decided to create their own company.  They searched the world (quite literally) including spending months in Argentina and Patagonia to find wool that would meet the rigid standards they set for themselves.

Rosy Stegmann is the driving force for Rosy Green.  She has a PhD in Computer Science.  But her roots in the fiber world extend back to her grandparents who founded a small spinning mill in Southern Germany in the 1950s.  The mill was eventually run by her parents.  She recalls a childhood filled with the smell of wool and a lot of knitting and crochet.

rosy green sheep

Rosy Green utilizes the finest Merino wool that is extremely soft and machine washable.  The yarns are wonderfully versatile and can work well even for children’s wear.

We hope you take the opportunity to love on Rosy Green soon.  You will not be sorry!


 

Kathy Approves This Message – Candace Rocks!

candace strickWhat a treat that Candace Eisner Strick is coming to Oxford. I have taken her classes and can attest that she is delightful, funny, down-to-earth, sincere, and personable. That is why, when we considered who we to invite for a weekend workshop, I suggested we put Candace at the top of the list.

I took a Candace class at the most recent Stitches conference – Knitting in the Hood, a moebius scarf/hat combo – that drew a standing room only attendance.  It is hard for me to describe her exceptional teaching ability.  She is patient, yet attentive to various skill levels.  We learned a new technique at which I was a miserable failure at my first attempt (hey – it happens) yet felt like a pro by the end of class.

At Stitches, Candace made a special presentation introducing her new book Knit my Skirt that engendered an enthusiastic response. It excited me so much that I am (almost) convinced to knit one myself!  She will make the same presentation to us at our Friday special event.

I was thrilled to spend some one-on-one time with her! She is very generous with her knowledge and is as excited to come here as we are to have her with us.

Look for more details soon about Candace’s professional and personal background (cello, pianist husband, wonder bunny and parrot) and the classes she is bringing to Oxford!

I know that once you spend a little time you will understand why I gush so about her. She is a real knitter’s treasure.

Officially a Bag Lady


danica2 danicabags

I love bags.  I love small ones and huge ones.  I love bags with pockets.  I love bags that close with a zipper.  I love bags that close with a button.  I love bags.  I love that my knitting passion gives me good reason to buy more bags.

With that in mind that we headed to market with a goal to bring more bags to our shop.  And, WOW! did we ever.

We have the Kaboodle Bags – the stunning tapestry carpet-style bags designed exclusively for us by Cover Girls from California –  and Happy Hands project bags created in Memphis.

We recently proudly added Della Q bags to our collection.  We already expanded our Della Q inventory as we found more to love in each bag and accessory.  They are uniquely designed for the knit and crochet artist and it shows!

Now, we introduce you to Danica.  They are not so much designed for knitters as they are designed for knitters to love.  We fell for the “pencil roll” that is perfect for storage and transporting dpns, and the metal “pencil case” that is too cool and perfect for little things that sit around your knitting table.  We love the linen totes designed to make you smile.

No excuses now.  We have a little bit of whimsy for every taste that will fulfill your every passion and desire to organize but not too seriously.

Come and add to your collection…or give as a gift and spread the joy around.  No project or stitch marker ever need be loose again.

Not too hot, not too cold, but just right!

outlast blogOne of the fibers used in Mrs. Crosby’s Train Case yarn is called “Outlast Viscose”.  The word Outlast is trademarked and we wanted to know more.  We know the yarn feels terrific but were curious about a fiber we had never heard of before.

It turns out to be a very interesting story.  Outlast technology enhances textiles by providing temperature regulation that manages heat and moisture.  It is a process that can be incorporated into fabrics and fibers that was first developed for NASA!

For those of us without a science background compare the Outlast technology to an ice cube in a drink.  As it melts, it can absorb heat while it cools the drink.  The Outlast process provides this benefit to the fibers.  It also has the capacity to absorb, store and release excess heat.  The claim is that any product containing Outlast technology “has the ability to continually regulate skin’s microclimate.  As the skin gets hot, the heat is absorbed, and as it cools, the heat is released.”  The intention, simply, is to keep you cool.

Outlast is not the same as wicking, which manages moisture by pulling it away from the skin.  Outlast is supposed to proactively manage heat while controlling the production of moisture.

While this may be more information than anyone needs in order to enjoy Mrs. Crosby’s yarn, it sure is pretty fun.  Plus, what a perfect yarn and technology for any garment – particularly that pair of socks for your favorite man.  You can tell him that the fiber has been “Tested in Space”.

outlast diagram

 

 

 

Really in my suitcase!

suitcase

I did some writing this summer about what you might take on your travels.  I was filled with my own angst as my own week-long cruise loomed before me.  We were off to ALASKA!  A glacier could get in our way!  The inland passage might ice over! We could be quarantined!  These were worthy concerns.  WHAT IF I RAN OUT OF KNITTING PROJECTS?  Or, what if I took a project and ran in to trouble with no one nearby to help.  I had to have plenty of backup projects.

Solution:  In my suitcase I packed one pair of blue jeans, one pair of slacks, two sweaters (wore the 3rd), three scarves (to make the sweaters look different every day) and FOUR knitting projects.  The suitcase had two inches of clothing and 17 inches of yarn – the perfect balance.  As I walked out the door to the airport I threw one large skein of yarn in my carry on bag…you know, just in case.

I figured one could always wash clothes but we might be thousands of miles from the nearest yarn shop – on a boat!

The very good news is that all of this incredibly strategic planning allowed me the time to knit (and some re-knit) the Endless Wrap designed by Blue Sky Fibers using their new Woolstok and to move forward on the Solaris Shawl with Mad Tosh. Both projects are big, wrap-me-up shawls.  To me, if you are going to knit shawl it should envelope you.

I came home with three projects nearly finished and some clothes to wash.  And, p.s., no one noticed what I wore but everyone looked at my knitting!

we joined the gang!

billie jean cropped

It is a little bit magical to discover something you did not know you were looking for – as it was when we found Wool and the Gang.  In D.C., with hours to kill, we visited a local yarn shop (Looped Yarn Works).  It was love at the entrance and we came upon treasures you soon will see in our Shop.  That is one reason we travel to other LYSs!  P.S.  Of course we did a lot of shopping while there…it is what you do at an LYS…even when you live in an LYS.

tommy topWhat caught our eye is Wool and the Gang’s Billie Jean Yarn.  The shop displayed the Tommy Top – one of the coolest sleeveless tops ever knit!  We were drawn right in and made an appointment to meet with the company at market.

This is a young British company with a passion to keep our craft alive, fresh and fashion forward.  The “Gang” thinks about yarn production from an enlightened vantage point.  They also believe that garments should be made with love, not mass produced.  They believe that “fashion is changing”.

The company commitment to fashion is clear in the patterns developed to support the Billie Jean line.  Each piece carries a WOW punch.  Is offers a completely fresh approach to an otherwise ordinary garment.  Yet each is utterly functional.  This is not your grandmother’s knitwear.  This is not JUST a cardigan, or tee top or sweater.  This is THE one that you have been in search of.  Exactly what you were looking for – even if you did not know you were looking for it.

We invite you to be part of the gang and create great pieces with this remarkable new yarn.  As we speak, Kathy is working on the Crazy Feeling Sweater.  My first Billie Jean project will be the Girlfriend Bag.  It is good to be a part of the Gang!
billie jean group

Topsy Turvy Top-Down Toe-Up August!

churchmouse top down 1 churchmouse toe up 1Your August Project!

Say YES to socks!! They make a small and portable project perfect for hot summer days. Nevermind that you think you do not want hand knit socks. You very well may come to love them and, for sure, you will learn something new and spend time out of the heat with friends.

Kathy has put together a terrific curriculum for our August Saturdays. You choose: The morning class is “top-down” in fingering, DK, sport or worsted weight! The afternoon class is  “toe-up” in fingering, DK or sport weight!

If you are worried about double pointed needles – no problem.  Kathy will show you how to create socks on 2 circs. (AND, we have new addi Flip Stix dpns that may change your double pointed worries!)

We already have a great selection of yarns for any weight sock.  Just in time for these classes, we will receive a new supply ofMadelinetosh Twist Light. AND, we have fingering weight yarn coming from a company NEW to Knit1.  We loved them at market – hint: “She plays!” Watch for them on our social media.

Classes will be held Saturdays, August 6, 13, 20 (and 27 as a make-up session). Mornings will be 10:30 to noon for Top-Down and afternoons will be 1:30 to 3:00 for Toe-Up.

Cost: $45 plus materials. Choose your materials prior to class. Sign up soon (even if you have not yet decided on your yarn and pattern) to hold your space. Class sizes are small to allow for individual attention.Screen Shot 2016-07-16 at 4.29.23 PM

We Built the Shop!

village cropped
It happened. Knit1 Oxford is reborn in our new home (303 Heritage Drive, Oxford) It is our third space in six years. The moves happened for many reasons. Some beyond our control. Some just business necessity. No matter why, we now are exactly where we should be. The shop exterior is charming and “looks like a yarn shop”.  Parking is easy. The stoplight from Jackson Avenue makes for easy and safe getting to and leaving.

Mostly, the space inside makes this place magical. Somehow everything works better. It is intimate (but not crowded) and seems spacious (though it is not). There still is room to sit and knit and consider your next project or take a class.

All of the yarn is visible. And, by way of Lynn’s and Larry’s design genius the shop has an art installation of fiber color that will amaze. It amazes us!

The new shop is launched through the efforts of many family and friends who did not ask whether we needed them. They just were there. We are forever grateful to each and every person who gave their muscle and their time.

It was a remarkable three weeks it has been. Larry came to town and spent three days sketching and re-designing. There were days of packing (no small feat). We left town to attend the industry trade show for three inspiring and exhausting days. We came home and moved all that we had packed. We rebuilt the shop.

We passed tired about days before we were finished and hurt in places we did not know existed. It did not matter. We were driven and excited to make it happen.

We know a couple of things.
(1) We are the luckiest yarn shop. We (I) have friends and family that make everything better. None of this would happen without them. None of this would be fun or gratifying but for them. Larry, Lynn, Nancy, Nancy, Kathy, Kathy, Freddie, Ann, Peggy, Pamela, Robert, Marty, Nancy, Ellen, Debbie, Carolyn and John – together they have built the most beautiful shop;

(2) Knit1 Oxford is exactly where we should be. It took three tries but we made it!

(3) It looks beautiful now and it will change as time goes by;

(4) We will never move again!

And so it goes and we hope we look forward to our future and your time at our table.

 

Knit1 Oxford   |   303 Heritage Drive, Oxford, MS 38655   |   (662) 238-2829 website by oakes copy and creative services