Edinburgh On Our Minds

Hi All!
Most everything is coming up Lothian this week. We are so excited to promote our recently-added Lothian color way in TWO different fiber formats and for TWO different patterns. We also have a Deja Vu pattern that will leave you dreamy as well as our first Bo Peeps, still available for pre-order.

Your Slip Is Showing
Your Slip Is Showing is a boomerang-shaped shawl by designer Casapinka. It is an opportunity to make a large statement piece using a simple slipped stitch technique, which is meditative to knit as it flows from one color combination to the next in twelve different sections. It uses four different colors of fingering-weight yarn and lends itself well to speckles, tonals or variegated colors, fade sets, or gradient colors. We have Your Slip Is Showing Kits in our Studio Sox base, and our shop sample was completed in the Lothian collection.
 

Want to stash bust for Your Slip Is Showing? There is a schematic that allows you to plan your shawl colors using colored pens or pencils. How fun! Use it to determine which color will show up at the beginning, middle and end of your project. Directions for this are described in the pattern. Or just do it any ole way you want!

Local Yarn Store Day
It’s just about that time! In support of TNNA’s inaugural Local Yarn Store Day, we will be open on Saturday, April 21, 2018 from 10am to 4pm. Yes, that’s THIS Saturday! We have several new color ways and fiber kits to share.

We will also give away a free pattern (with a yarn purchase) by designer Casapinka. Her new pattern is called Local Yarn Shawl (at left), which she designed in support of this event. We are excited that Casapinka chose a skein of Fifty Shades of Gradient™ in color way Lothian for her pattern sample. Pick up a friend and make a day of it and c’mon out and see us and support your local yarn shop!

Deja Vu All Over Again
Designed by Lisa Hannes, this bias-knit triangular shawl combines the interplay of two colors with a bold & graphic mosaic stitch pattern, which creates an eye-catching effect. It is an easy and fun knit (as it only engages one yarn color at a time) that will give you a large and cozy shawl to keep you warm.

This pattern is perfect for one 3.5-ounce skein of our Fifty Shades of Gradient™ – deja vu and one 3.5-ounce skein of Studio Sox. Our shop sample features Amsterdam and Blackberry. However, when committing to strong contrasting tonals, we love our Walkabout – Fingering and Merino Bamboo – Fingering (adds a soft sheen) for these mosaic stitch projects as well.

Want to know what we’re deweing? Pop in to see our studio wörks on Ravelry, Facebook (we post changes to our business hours here), and Instagram as well as on our website at thefibrestudio.com (we post changes to our business hours here).

Happy stitching, y’all!
The Ewe Crew

Get these Bo Peeps for a Limited Time Only (Until April 20)!

Divine Rites of Spring Cleaning

Hi Everyone!
Now that you’ve sprung forward for Daylight Savings, skipped the loch fantastic in Edinburgh, and frolicked your way through Sapphire…what’s next?

Is it intimidating to say…the newest fiber/color season has only just begun? Okay, wow. What to do…what to do…with those lovely skeins you just recently purchased or even those you hand-picked during the yarn crawl, holiday sales, or only recently rediscovered? We have several suggestions, and this type of spring cleaning doesn’t require a Swiffer, a handy maid service, or a honey-do list for a significant other. In fact, our process of matching beautiful yarns with inspiring projects is simply divine.

We have eight beautiful (and FREE) one-skein shawls below, which are perfect for those one-of-a-kind skeins from those aforementioned, out-of-the-world events. Also, we have a One Skein Wonders Favorites Bundle we’ve shared on Ravelry containing these as well as several other popular one-skein projects for your use and reference.

These first two shawls couldn’t be any more different. The Juliet Shawl (below left) is lace from top to edge, crescent-shaped, and can be blocked aggressively. Conversely (and ironically), the I Heart Lace shawl (below right) is a triangular shawl, containing only a little lace on its border, and a large part of the project being formed in stockingette. Both are lovely and choosing is merely a matter of fiber selection and mood.
 

The next two beauties have both amazing texture and interesting construction. The Wellentanz shawl (below left) is a triangular shawl with an interesting lace border containing horizontal zigzag eyelet groups. The Rambler (below right) is more crescent-shaped scarf than traditional shawl, however, both shape and construction guarantee your beautiful fiber will remain around the wearer’s neck and shoulders for all to see.

These next two patterns have several attributes in common: They are both crescent-shaped, have a significant garter or stockingette section, and contain a lace border with a sparkly add-on. The Biophilia shawl (below left) is inspired by the sea and has a sharp picot beaded edging. The Chevalier Shawl (below right) has a gorgeous beaded diamond surrounded by a rippling feather and fan motif.

These last two (also still FREE) patterns are two shawls we actually have in our retail space. Both shop samples were knit utilizing our Fifty Shades of Gradient™ line in our SW Merino – Fingering fiber. The Bosc Pear shawl (below left) was knit in color way Pyrus, and the Touchstone shawl (below right) was knit in color way Nantahala. Both patterns are simple, contain beautiful eyelets, and can be knit until all the lovely gradient yumminess is used.
 

Carolina FiberFest
The Fibre Studio will again participate in the annual Carolina FiberFest, held in the Kerr Scott Building at the NC State Fairgrounds in our fair capital Raleigh, NC. The festival is from Mar 23-24, however, we will pack up our yarns and travel on March 22. The Fibre Studio will be closed to the public from March 22-24.

For those of you who have never attended, there are classes/workshops, demos and talks, a myriad of shopping for all things fiber-related, and is a great opportunity to meet your regional indie dyers and see their fibers in person. This is a great opportunity for a girl’s day (or weekend) out so pick up a friend or three and plan to enjoy this fun, family-friendly event.

Want to know what we’re deweing? Pop in to see our studio wörks on Ravelry, Facebook (we post changes to our business hours here), and Instagram as well as on our website at thefibrestudio.com (we post changes to our business hours here).

Happy stitching, y’all!
The Ewe Crew

Coloring Within the Lines

Hi Everyone!
This week we have two sets of tips to help select/control your color within the “lines” of your project as well as updates for this month’s shows.

Smooth Out the Rough Edges
We are excited to share a YouTube video link called “5 Ways to Make Neat Side Edges in Knitting” displaying a variety of techniques to give knitted projects smooth and finished edges (or lines). The video (about 12 minutes in length) contains five ways to beautifully finish your projects, including:
1. Slip First Stitch, Purl Last Stitch (RS & WS): Gives an even chain along both edges.

2. Slip First Stitch, Knit Last Stitch (RS & WS): Gives an even “knotted” appearance along both edges.

3. Garter Stitch (RS & WS): Gives a tidy two-stitch reversible garter border (knitting all stitches) along both edges, which is helpful in preventing rolled edges.

4. Seed Stitch (RS & WS): Gives a tidy and modern two-stitch border with a K1,P1 beginning and a P1,K1 ending to each row, front and back. It helps to prevent curling as well and looks good with most textured stitches.

5. I Cord (RS & WS): The couture selvage edge which gives a rolled, almost seamed look to a project’s edges without picking up a sewing needle. Right side and wrong side rows are given opposite treatments.

While most of these edges won’t be new skills for experienced knitters, it is a nicely-presented tutorial in that it is clean and concise–using the same color yarn, in small swatches, with clear instruction. It’s a visual treat for a side-by-side comparison of all five methods in one short video and a nice reminder of many of the options available to makers when we want to add polish to our completed projects.

Color Confidence
We’ve previously discussed Color Matters here on Lola’s Corner, however, we recognized there is always room to grow and learn. With all of the “fade” and “speckled” project combinations out there, we thought we would share a few tips on how certain color ways change when skeined and/or when knit or crochet.

Speckled (or Freckled here at the studio) yarns are yarns with short bursts of color. The color appears in a skein from about the size of a speck up to about four inches long on the strand. When knit or crochet, that small burst of color usually reveals itself in as few as one to four stitches before the next color begins.

During many dye processes, the color pools together and can be very photogenic. However, many makers are (unhappily) surprised when their yarn is wound or when they begin a project as it doesn’t look the way they imagined.

This is why: Dye pools are created across multiple strands. Our eyes are drawn to these intense bursts of color, however, when the fiber is skeined, there is only one strand per rotation, and that intense pool of color becomes a small sliver.  At right is an example of our Freckles – Walkabout in color way Meteor. The third skein has been wound, however, it has the same blues, greens, pearl, and rusty colors as does the other three hand-dyed skeins. In the third skein, it is easier to see the impact the colors would have in a knit fabric. When selecting your yarn, imagine this third skein and then select the one that has more of the color you want to “pop out.” Otherwise, your fade may truly fade away.

Variegated yarns behave in a similar manner; however, the color pooling created during the dye process covers a larger area thus creating more intense pooling areas on the completed knit fabrics as well. Here you will see our Walkabout – Fingering in color way Cherokee. This color way has large areas of intense color on the dyed skeins; however, when wound into a cake, the same color way almost looks woven. In the knitted sample, you can see the long pooling effect, created by using a yarn which has color repeats lasting anywhere from about 5 to 36 inches in a single strand of the variegated yarn. As in the previous example, when selecting your skeins, choose the skein containing the color you most want to emphasize.

Upcoming Events
Edinburgh Yarn Festival: Our fearless leader is making the trip across the pond to the annual Edinburgh Yarn Festival 2018 in mid-March. Expect a few upcoming color surprises and offerings from the studio to celebrate this trip.

Carolina Fiber Frolic: The Fibre Studio is a participant in this year’s Carolina Fiber Frolic in Sapphire, NC, from March 16-18. Stay tuned on our Facebook Events Page for updates.

Carolina FiberFest: The Fibre Studio will again participate in the annual Carolina FiberFest, held in the Kerr Scott Building at the NC State Fairgrounds in our fair capital Raleigh, NC. The festival is from Mar 23-24, however, we will pack up our yarns and travel on March 22.

Want to know what we’re deweing? Pop in to see our studio wörks on Ravelry, Facebook (we post changes to our business hours here), and Instagram as well as on our website at thefibrestudio.com (we post changes to our business hours here).

Happy stitching, y’all!
The Ewe Crew

If It’s Free, It’s For Me!

Hi Everyone,
We realize much of our readership gets overwhelmed during the holiday season. We are all inundated with overlapping sales strategies (including our own), and much of the joy and true meaning behind the holidays is lost during the hustle and bustle of shopping and business.

We are so very grateful for our customers and social media followers as well as for the designers and makers in our greater fiber community. Therefore, we want to spend this week sharing the gifts they’ve offered to us all by featuring these FREE patterns, currently available on Ravelry.

Maori Shawl by Daria Sorokina
Maori is a classic top-down shawl knit in one piece. Patterning is on the right side rows only; wrong side rows are purled. Lace-weight fibers like our Sea Song – Lace or fingering-weight yarn like our Walkabout – Fingering are great options for this project. Gauge is not crucial so use needle size to obtain the desired lace effect. Here are some of our favorite Ravelry projects for you to view and enjoy.
   

Amorous Shawl by Katja Löffler
Unlike many of our featured patterns, this generously-sized shawl pattern is crochet (yayyy!) and is perfect for large-skeins of gradient yarns like our those 7-oz cakes in our Fifty Shades of Gradient™ line. Look at this selection of beautiful completed projects from Ravelry yarnies.
   

Ghost Ranch Cowl by Jessie Ksanznak
This cowl was inspired by the designer’s travels through the American southwest. She visited Santa Fe and fell in love with the Navajo woven fabric designs. Patterns (similar to those in the cowl), dramatic colors, and simple motifs adorned rugs, pillows, and clothing. This project uses slipped stitches and three contrasting colors to create a woven effect, and the pattern comes in three sizes. We think our Cashmere Silk – Fingering would be a luxe option for this cowl, but we love the silky radiance and three-season flexibility of our Sea Song – Fingering as well. Mixing and matching works too! Here are a few completed cowl projects for you to peruse.
 

Touchstone Shawl by Laura Aylor
Sometimes we need to just knit for the pure joy if it…to remember WHY we knit. The combination of simple eyelets and garter stitch in this shawl make it an easy public knit when with our friends. It’s an ideal project for most all fibers, including tonal, variegated, and gradient yarns. The Fibre Studio has a studio sample in Nantahala in our Fifty Shades of Gradient™ line, but this shawl can be enlarged by using SW Merino – Sport or can really be personalized by stash busting from your existing favorites. Here are some of the beauties found on Ravelry.

Black Sheep Are Ewes Too

The Fibre Studio has long struggled with how to identify our one-of-a-kind color ways or those 4-ounce skeins that broke during the winding process, which ended up being odd-sized skeins after we trim off the broken bits. We decided to name these unique offerings, Black Sheep. So the next time you’re in our studio, and you see our little lavender-faced ewe….there may just be a very special color, product, or price attached.

Want to know what we’re deweing? You can always pop in to see our studio wörks on Ravelry, Facebook, and Instagram as well as on our website at thefibrestudio.com

Happy and peaceful stitching, y’all!
The Ewe Crew

SAFF Recap, Halloween & Sheep Ninjas

Hi Everyone,
Ready for some tricks or treats?

For those of you who attended the Southeastern Animal Fiber Fair (SAFF) in Fletcher, North Carolina, you’ve already enjoyed a few TREATS. After a few initial TRICKY technical difficulties with the Davis Arena wi-fi, this year’s SAFF was another huge success. We want to extend a huge THANK YOU to those of you who came by our booth to see us and support our participation. We appreciate you!

A Smoky Mountain Treat
Our secret SAFF color way was posted on Facebook and Instagram just as we were pulling away from our doors and heading to SAFF. This Nantahala color way, part of our Fifty Shades of Gradient™ line, was dyed with SAFF in mind. This fiber festival takes place at the end of October and is in a particularly beautiful and colorful part of the Great Smoky Mountains of North Carolina.

Nantahala (our color’s namesake) is Cherokee for “Land of the Noonday Sun.” The Nantahala National Forest is also located in the Smokies. This area has richly-hued autumn foliage with crystal bright waters, which feed into Fontana Lake. For you Game of Thrones lovers, this color way IS “the song of fire and ice.”

For those of you looking for a new project, we made our shop sample from the lovely Laura Aylor shawl pattern called Touchstone, which is currently a free download on Ravelry here.

One Trick, More Treats
These are the last days customers can order our Halloween colors. Two of these colors will be placed in hibernation until next year.  Even though we’ve gifted these color ways with groovy Monster Mash-friendly names like Wicked (below top left), Slip Sliming Away (below top right), Eastwick (below bottom left) and Sleepy Hollow (below bottom right) doesn’t mean they aren’t great all-year-round colors to delight and enjoy. The TRICK is to get these spookilicious TREATS before they, like Casper the Ghost and really great chocolate truffles, go POOF!

It’s Coming
Although the weather is not yet be frightful and the turkey hasn’t been bought or stuffed, we want you to know the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse Ewe Ninjas of the biggest holiday shopping weekend of the year WILL have your back so stay tuned to this same sheep time, same sheep channel….

Want to know what The Ewe Crew is up to? You can always pop in to see our studio wörks on Ravelry, Facebook, and Instagram as well as on our website at thefibrestudio.com.

Happy stitching, y’all!
The Ewe Crew

All Roads Lead to SAFF

Hi Everyone,
While it’s not a true statement that all roads lead to SAFF, we have found it interesting how many recent projects are named after mapping or directional signs. Since so many makers will travel to festivals, fairs, and shows this autumn season, here’s our road map to fun projects, community awareness, and….yes….to SAFF.

For those of us GRITS (Girls Raised in the South), things sure have changed since we gave out directions using descriptions like, “Turn right at the big pin oak tree after you pass the rooster mailbox. You know, that oak tree was hit by lightning three different times, and it’s still standing!”

These projects are just as colorful and creative as a Southerner giving directions and will provide many hours of entertainment. Enjoy!

Streetscape by Jana Huck
Designed by Jana Huck, Streetscape is a garter stitch triangular shawl worked from tip to end, with a quirky zig-zag element that adds a touch of challenge to the otherwise soothing garter stitch. Wide blocks of stripes are visually striking, and when knit in the lovely grey and neutral shades, it is reminiscent of the German Autobahn. When the highway of life throws you for a curve, make a statement!

Each little twist and turn in the stripe pattern is simply a reminder that the journey will have some obstacles. We’ve all hit an unexpected bump or detour in life (or two or three). Toss this fabulous statement shawl over your shoulders and remember: The journey only makes you stronger.

All Points South by Casapinka
Is it a poncho or is it a shawl? According to designer Casapinka, it is a pullover shawl.

All Points South is meant to drape down over your shoulders to some degree but not necessarily fit all the way over your shoulders as a poncho would. Two sizes are available, and the pattern is designed to fit everyone. You can wear it bunched up like a cowl or lay it flat and smooth over your shoulders.

It is top down, seamless, with a “V.” There are a variety of stitches to keep it interesting; it’s designed for solids, speckles, variegated or a combination of all three. We like our Walkabout – Fingering, Freckles – Walkabout, and Studio Sox for this project.

Starting Point Wrap by Joji Locatelli
Designed by Joji Locatelli, this wrap was her May/June 2017 Mystery Knit Along and a huge international sensation.

This project requires five colors of fingering-weight yarn. The possible combinations for this wrap are so vast, and the achieved results can be so diverse… ANY color combination will work and will give you a beautiful piece, but remember this will be a big wrap and you will want to wear it. So go for colors that compliment your wardrobe and make you feel happy!

We recommend our Walkabout – Fingering and Freckles – Walkabout for this project. We have also put together a few Starting Point Kit ideas to tickle the imagination.

Some Roads Do Lead to SAFF
Be sure to mark your calendars for the Southeastern Animal Fiber Fair (SAFF) 2017! The event proper will be held from Thursday to Sunday, October 26-29. The event is located at the WNC Agricultural Center, in Fletcher, NC.

The Fibre Studio’s booth will be located in the Davis Arena in Booths 336 & 338.

While there are classes (registration info here) being held on Thursday, there is no shopping or selling until: Fri & Sat, October 27-28, 9am – 6pm AND Sun, October 29, 9am – 4pm

Kindness and Hope Abound
It’s October, which is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, and our Save the Knockers Campaign is still going strong. We’ve decided to extend our sponsorship (by donating free knockers yarn to those who sign up at our studio) of the Knitted Knockers.org project. Further, one of our dyers (Glenda T) has knit a beautiful shawlette from pattern called Kindness by designer Jaala Spiro in our color way Hope, part of our Fifty Shades of Gradient™ lineup. The pattern is currently free on Ravelry and makes a beautiful gift for self or someone you love.

Not a pink fan but still want to spread a little hope and kindness? Take a look at Wicked or Eastwick, vibrant and fun colors for those who want to make something “For Good” during the Halloween and autumn season!
   
Happy and peaceful stitching, y’all!

Sweaters ‘n Crawls, Y’all

Hi All,
It’s September, can you believe it? While it may take weeks for the leaves to change here in the Charlotte area, it’s really okay as we aren’t sweating the small stuff. Besides our Save the Knockers Campaign, which is in full swing, two things we are focused on this week are….sweater weather is almost upon us AND so is the Charlotte Area Yarn Crawl.

Sweater Weather is NOW!
If you’re in the mid-Atlantic or Southeast, you’re probably thinking, “It’s still 80F out there. It is NOT sweater weather.” You would be correct. [Unless you’re Heike N. who wears sweaters and three shawls throughout the year. Who wouldn’t, when she knits so beautifully. However, I digress.] How long does it actually take to make a sweater? For most makers, it takes several weeks so if you want to actually wear it during the fall and winter months, the time to begin making is NOW. That’s right…make those needles “Move Like Jagger.” Here are a few of our favorite sweater projects (click on photos for yarn recommendations) for making this sweater season the best EVAH. No U-G-L-Y holiday sweaters here!

   
   
Top Row (L to R): Juicy Gloss, Easy Folded Poncho, Hitofude
Bottom Row (L to R): Winter Wheat, Chance of Showers, Sunshine Coast

Charlotte Area Yarn Crawl
It’s coming very soon! The Charlotte Area Yarn Crawl is September 22-30, 2017. This year’s crawl has eleven participating area yarn shops and studios. There will be a LOT going on this yarn crawl including:

  • Treasure Map: Get maps stamped to be entered for a grand-prize;
  • MKAL Pattern: Each location will make available a part of the pattern to shoppers;
  • Swag Pins: Show your LYS support by purchasing a swag pin at each shop/studio;
  • Community Project: Learn about our Save the Knockers Campaign or plan to visit the Pink Lady Truck at one of the LYS; and
  • New Yarns & Colors: Many shops will offer new yarns or color ways during the crawl. The Fibre Studio has two new color ways in our Fifty Shades of Gradient™ line (as seen below) for the yarn crawl, and we are taking reservations (aka pre-orders) since we always run out the first couple of days. Don’t miss out…get yours now so it will be ready during the yarn crawl for pick up or for shipping.


Introducing the two newest color ways in our Fifty Shades of Gradient™ line:
Amsterdam (left), which evokes the rich hues of the international city of the same name–the vibrancy of the art scene, the water ways, and the colorful buildings; and
Joplin (right), which speaks to those colors found during Bonnie and Clyde 1930’s blazing trail through the midwest, including herringbone suits, fedoras, red brick general stores, and get-away cars.

Are YOU ready to gather your shopping bags and your yarnie friends and prepare to hunt for treasure?

For now, wishing you the very best Labor-less Day and happy stitching, y’all!