Technical Tuesday: Darn Weaving in Ends

One of the first skills you realize is important is weaving in the ends. Its something that can take your garment from looking home-made to hand-made. Everyone strives for the hand-made look; we’re talking fine Italian suits that are $1000 made by nuns, not a garment that was glue-gunned together in someone’s kitchen.

There is a different kind of weaving for many different kinds of stitches so I’ve also linked the Very Pink Knits videos for garter stitch.

And ribbing.

If you’re anything like me and hate to weave in ends at the end of a project, you can always weave them in as you go.

If you’re having problems with your ends staying woven in, check out that first video for sure. It’s an excellent technique and very well explained. It’s almost like back-stitching in sewing. You’re going back to the previous stitch and locking that yarn in even tighter. This is one of those things I learned the hard way, but once you’ve got it, you’re golden!

One Year Anniversary!

I know it is a little bit past, but October 18th, Paul and I celebrated our one-year anniversary! It was on a Sunday and that was the day after Creativ Festival and Woodstock Fleece and Fibre, so we mostly celebrated by NOT doing any yarn things.


It doesn’t seem like that long ago that we were in full wedding craziness. There were a few weddings that year in a short period of time, and we were first, which I am glad about. I was able to attend those other weddings and just relax, no worrying about deadlines or getting things done.


I was also able to attend with my husband. Paul and I were engaged for almost three years, so it was high time we actually planned a wedding and tied the knot. Our wedding day was everything I could have dreamed for and I got to marry a very good man, who puts up with a lot of sarcasm and yarn.


Still Alive Part 2

The marketplace at the Creativ Festival was really good; huge. We were placed right beside Biscotte Yarns. I had heard of Biscotte Yarns before and their sock-of-the-month club is actually on my wish list. It was really great to be able to sit beside them the whole time and get to know the ladies working the booth. Their yarn is really stunning, especially the self-striping, but everyone here knows about my soft spot for self-striping yarn.
I also took the time to jaunt over to A Needle Pulling Thread and say hello. Everyone there was busy, but I still got to say hello and check in with them. I also took some of their awesome KNITmuch cards back to our booth. There was a ruler on the edges and I thought that was extremely clever. We actually ended up having to tell people that they could take them. Customers would walk by, pick one up, look at it and then put it back. I think they thought it was something we were selling.


I know we are light on photos again, but there are lots and lots of links to look at!

I wasn’t personally at Woodstock, but I had a quick re-cap from my booth bunnies. We were right beside the Alpaca, but nothing got eaten, so I count that in the win column.
One thing that everyone was pleased about was the premier of a new colour! I decided that people had been asking long enough and dyed some yarn a plain black. We called it ‘you never go back’. So many people wanted plain colours to mix with all the really bright yarn, so I’m branching out a bit. Watch the shop for a couple more neutrals in the near future.
I’m lining up all the shows for next year and getting all the pre-orders from the past shows sent out. There will also be an Etsy update soon as well. I have to put up the latest self-striping, Witches Britches, and the newest colour, You Never Go Back. If you’re not signed up to our newsletter, here is a link. I’ll definitely be announcing these things in the newsletters!

Technical Tuesday: Pocket Styles

I had a really good question on our Ravelry group about pockets! Pockets are something that is inherently scary with knitting. There are a lot of fears around putting them in and the stretching that could happen. I wouldn’t suggest carrying anything too heavy in them.

There are quite a few videos out there and I picked these three, but if you’re not able to get what you want from these, just search pockets in knitting. There will be a lot of information that comes up!

I’ve got three videos about how to put in pockets, but the placement is important too. There are generally instructions about pocket placement, but if you’re looking to place them yourself I would add the pocket in after the garment is finished. That way you can look at where it would make sense to have pockets.

If anyone has any specific questions feel free to email me or ask about it on our Ravelry group! There is a thread specifically for things people would like me to look up!

Still Alive!

Show season is finally over for this year! I usually really enjoy going to shows and talking to people, but this year there were a lot in a small amount of space and customs wasn’t helping either. I am talking postal service customs and not flight customs.


Last weekend was the Creativ Festival and Woodstock Fleece and Fiber. I don’t think I will ever voluntarily do two shows at once again, but it is a good learning experience to try once.
At the Creativ Festival I was teaching Tuesday-Friday and the marketplace was open Thursday- Saturday. Driving all the way to Toronto to set up was not as terrible as you would think, we’re only about 45 minutes to 2 hours away… depending on traffic. Paul and I also decided to go home each night instead of staying in the hotel. The show was open till 8pm Thursday and Friday as well so that makes for a long day.


Perfectly packed bag for many many classes… it did not look at good by the end.

All my classes went extremely well. I really enjoy teaching and making sure that everyone got what they came to learn. It’s one of my favourite parts of this show. Especially since CF isn’t a knitting-only show; the people taking my class aren’t already expert knitters. This means I get to shape them a little bit. I can plant some of my own ideology of knitting into them and have a hand in the knitter they become. I really attempt to implant fearless knitting and the idea that nothing is ‘too hard’ some things aren’t for you, definitely, but they’re just not a strength. ‘Too hard’ is not a reason that should keep you from trying something!

The classes I taught were Intro to Fair Isle, Don’t Fear the Steek, Cast On’s and Swatch It; with a lecture on using colour in knitting around the middle there somewhere.
Sorry, this post is going to be light on photos because I really didn’t take all that many this past weekend. I feel like I didn’t get a chance to even attempt photographic artistry.
I am still winding down from the crazy busy weekend so I am going to attempt to order my thoughts and write about the Creativ Festival marketplace and the Woodstock Fleece and Fiber Fest later. For now, I’ll say that everyone survived and there was copious amounts of coffee involved.

A Little bit MORE of Everything

I feel like I should have more to say about the Knit City show on Saturday, but I really felt like it was a swirl of yarn, people and knitting accessories. I got to wander around a little more on Sunday; although Paul didn’t want me to stray too far in case someone came by with a question that he couldn’t answer. At which point I proceeded to remind him that all these problems will be solved when he gives in and learns how to knit. He was not amused.

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Right across the hallway from us was the Spinning and Weaving Guild, they were there both days with spinning wheels and… weaving machines? Looms? At one point I was trying to explain weaving to Paul and the resulting conversation was completely and totally mind bending. I feel like I should have used visual aids. I think he may have said ‘ohhhh, I got it’ so I would stop talking and breaking his brain with my explanation. They were very nice and friendly ladies who were very happy to talk with me when I went over and asked about some NEON yarn one of them had found.

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To our left was the Steamer Trunk booth. The lady working the booth was very nice as well. On the Sunday it felt a bit colder than the Saturday and we talked about how it was probably to encourage people to wear their hand knits. Her booth being a button and fabric booth, she had no such comforts. Luckily the booth on the other side of her, Baaad Anna’s, had a knit sample to keep her warm.
To our right, across the hall, was The Black Sheep, which was designated the most comfortable booth at the show. I told them they’ve got it right bringing in a nice cushiony armchair. When I went over to talk to them and complement them on their genius plan, they even pulled out a box as a foot stool for me. I would probably go with most comfortable booth AND most accommodating!
Knit City was a lot more relaxed on Sunday, but it gave me more one-on-one time with people. I was able to actually talk to people asking questions and it wasn’t a mad rush to spit out all the information I could before someone else needed me. Overall I REALLY REALLY enjoyed Knit City! There were a lot of interesting vendors and most of them were new to me! It was very interesting.

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That was the conclusion of the knitting portion of the vacation, we did more sightseeing the next day in Seattle. We were over in Seattle for a good 12 hours and saw as much as we possibly could. First we were going to have lunch in the Space Needle, but they were completely booked, so we went to a café across the street then went into the Chihuly Gardens and Glass. This place was really fascinating. Glass sculptures everywhere and most were seemingly abstract versions of plant life. It was very beautiful and the perfect day to be walking inside a garden.

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Next we were going to do an Underground tour of the abandoned tunnels under Pioneer square. Unluckily we happened to leave just as rush hour was starting and what should have been a 5 minute drive turned into a 45 minute drive. There was also a Seahawks game on somewhere downtown so people were all flocking in the same direction as us. We eventually made it and parked, but we had to take the tour an hour later than the one we had planned to see. This tour was fantastic! Really rich history, interesting stories and the funniest guide ever! I would recommend this tour to anyone traveling in that area; I would also probably take the tour again.

Sunset in Seattle-4533

That is all I have time to write about today! Regular blog posts will resume Next week and I promise you a couple long ones! There has been so much happening in my knitting world that I can hardly keep up!

A Little Bit of Everything

I hope this post is worth the wait! I’ve never been to Vancouver before and there were a lot of touristy things on my list. We’re about to head home and I feel like I’ve seen almost everything I needed to!

Grouse Mountain Vancouver-4312

Our flight out was at 6:55am, you’re supposed to be there a couple hours ahead and it is an hour drive to the airport from our house. Instead of waking up at 3 or 4am Paul and I stayed up to do as much re-skeining as we possibly could. When I dye yarn, it gets all tangled up in the dyebath, so I have to re-skein it to make sure there are no serious tangles in the yarn. The self-striping is a little bit more of a process because of the way it is dyed. So Paul and I didn’t go to bed, just stayed up yarning. Paul’s parents are accompanying us on this trip, so they were picking us and to drive to the airport. Luckily, Paul’s mom has a slightly nervous constitution and planned on picking us up around 2:30 or 3am to get to the airport. After we had packed all the bags into the truck and started to set off, there was a strange noise as we were backing out of the parking lot. The truck had a flat tire.

Vancouver Flat Tire-4261

We were very early so the 45 minutes it took the four of us to change it wasn’t a huge amount of time lost. We got to park and take the shuttle into the airport. After shuttle, security and all that jazz, there was only about 20 minutes left before we were to board the plane. I wouldn’t be able to sit and snooze for 20 minutes so I took out my needles and started on a hat that I am making for Paul’s little cousin in Vancouver.

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Our plan was to sleep on the plane because there is a three-hour time difference between Ontario and Vancouver. Leaving at 7am and a five-hour flight, it would be around noon Ontario-time. We were actually arriving at 9am so there is some weird time-shift seeming witchcraft happening there. Our plan was to sleep on the plane and get a full first day in Vancouver. Nothing huge planned, but possibly a small amount of exploring around the hotel; get to know your surroundings and all that jazz. I think this plane must have been smaller than your average tiny plane because I felt extremely cramped the whole time. I even took a gravol just before we boarded to MAKE SURE I slept. I did end up sleeping fitfully for all but the last half hour, but it was actually difficult and I am sure the nice girl beside me would have liked to kill me for worming around so much. Dear Nice Lady, I’M SORRY!! I am usually well-behaved on flights and can sit and knit for hours on end. I plug in my headphones, listen to audio books and don’t move AT ALL! My headphones were being finicky and would stop playing if I touched the cord or moved around at all, which is almost worse than not having them. An audio book provides a constant stream of talking, like white noise. I fall into the story, which calms my mind, then drop off to sleep. It’s much more difficult when all you can think about is ‘Don’t move, don’t move, don’t move.’

Vancouver Knit City-4408

I also forgot to mention that we are packing all the stock yarn, banners, samples etc. into checked bags. I put all that yarn into the hands of the airline and just attempted to NOT think about all the things that could go wrong. Our flight was direct, so not much of a chance of anything getting lost, but STILL! I made sure to plaster my name, phone number and address all over each case. I also tried to mix each case with an assortment of bases and colours, so if one was lost or a day or two late getting there it wasn’t going to ruin everything. I felt like I had done everything I possibly could to make sure the airline would be able to find/contact me in the event of lost luggage. However when we went to pick everything up, there were no issues. I am not going to lie, I felt like a girl who needed to pack her whole closet to go on a weeklong trip. We picked up our rental van and headed over to the hotel to see if our room was ready. It was very early, but the Atrium Inn had a room ready and we were able to bring our stuff in. After this, I realized I was STARVING and we went to eat. There was a place across the road where everything was under ten dollars so we checked it out before I passed out from starvation. Lunch, well… brunch, was alright and after this I headed straight for bed and slept for several hours.

Grouse Mountain-4305

The next day the four of us trekked up to Grouse Mountain. I did want to see the Capilano Suspension bridge, but someone looked it up and it was quite expensive, so we postponed that to another visit. The day was beautiful and clear so on the ride to the top we could see everything!

Selfie Grouse Mountain-4315

There were a lot of things to do at the top including seeing bears, wolves, watching the lumberjack show, just looking around at the ah-mazing views everywhere. We ended up spending a good portion of the entire day there.

Grouse Mountain Wolf-4399

Friday was show prep day! We needed a lot of things and spent all day running around and setting up at the PNE forum. Set up went really well, by the end of the day I felt like this was the most prepared we had ever been for a show, but I think that is partially due to the fact that we couldn’t go back to our house after set up and continue getting things ready etc.
Saturday morning we woke up, had breakfast at the hotel and headed over to the PNE building.

Vancouver Knit City Booth-4413

This was RIGHT across the street so it was really REALLY convenient. We didn’t have to drive at all, just walked over and managed to not take up any of the parking. As soon as the doors opened there were a lot of people roaming around. The whole first day was an absolute mad house, trying to answer questions and give each customer the attention they deserved. Our self-striping rainbow yarn, Psychedelic Onyx, sold out in 2 hours. There were a lot of people doing the ‘first lap’. I always do this at shows to prevent me from buying EVERYTHING! I tried to warn everyone I could that we only brought limited stock to the show. There is always next time though. Everyone LOVED the pattern markers; they were a really big hit.

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I didn’t really manage to talk to a lot of other vendors or people that were teaching because I was so busy, but I will tell you more about day two of the show next post! There is plenty more to tell!

Technical Tuesday: Photos

First and foremost I am going to tell you that I am by no means an expert on this subject. I, like everyone else starting out, took horrible photos. I was friends with a couple of people who were really into photography and learned quite a bit from just asking questions.

I don’t have a fancy camera; all the photos I take are on my smartphone. This video gives you a really great founding in the basics of taking photos with your smart phone. The lighting is key. I am really lucky and have some sheer curtains in my living room, which is perfect for indirect natural sunlight. The hardest thing with lighting is getting the colour to show up true. If I am taking pictures of anything for Etsy I have to make sure the colours are perfect because you don’t want someone buying yarn and it being a completely different colour than pictured online.

Something this video mentions is to experiment and have fun with it. I take 15-20 photos for every single photo I post. So don’t think that you’re going to take three photos and they’re all going to be perfect. I might think something looks great, but when I look at it on my computer, not so much.
It’s a process and it takes time. I like to look at product photos from others and see what really appeals to me about that photo. Why is it aesthetically pleasing? What makes me want to make that shawl? Is it the colour? The way it’s displayed? Really breaking down other’s photos into smaller chunks can help you with your own photography practice. Best of luck!!

The Whole Vacation Thing

As I mentioned in passing yesterday… I am one of those people who is at the airport WAY earlier than they need to be, with enough supplies to survive in 99% of Earth’s conditions for at least a couple days. I’m going to lay out what my packing process looks like for those of you who are either interested or keen to have a laugh.

Travelling with Knitting

First of all this process is by no means perfected. I only started traveling in the end of 2013, that was my first ever airplane ride! I definitely packed a lot of things I didn’t need for a week trip to Chicago. Paul had to remind me that I was probably going to buy a fair amount of yarn and needed space to bring it back. At which point I looked at him with no small amount of horror. I had almost forgotten to leave space for yarn. No good could come of this so I decided to be much more careful about my packing.

Travelling with Knitting 2

First of all, I try to roll all my clothes before I place them in my bag. I think about the weather, what it could be, what it is unlikely to be, and just pack for everything. We went camping a lot as children and that was the theory behind packing for a camping trip. What you need to survive anything.
Second of all, I try to imagine the things that are okay to forget. If you’re going somewhere with drug stores, then it’s probably okay not to bring one of everything in your medicine cabinet. If you can reliably buy antacids and Band-Aids, I’m not too concerned.

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A ‘busy bag’ aka, yarn and stuff. I wrote a post a while ago about how I always pack way too much yarn for projects that I could probably start while on vacation. I think about the trip there and if I will end up sleeping or not. I ALWAYS plan to sleep, but don’t always end up sleeping. I also think I will have much more time for sitting and doing nothing than I end up. Although, when we went to Cuba it was the wet season and we spent more time than I thought we would indoors. I don’t bring anything too complicated, just something to keep my hands busy. Usually socks, as I know you are all excited about!
I do all of this, 3-5 days before the trip and plan to throw more things in as I think of them. I usually leave this bag in our spare room or on the floor in our bedroom (although this encourages kitties who think they’re going to travel). If I think of something I’ve forgotten I throw it in! Repacking at the end and taking out things I know I am not going to need!

On the Move

The weather has been getting colder and that more than anything really puts me in a mood for knitting! When the house is freezing and you need to go find socks to discourage your toes from turning blue. That is my favourite weather, right there! I love putting on layers and being able to wear the things I’ve knitted. It really sucks to knit something that you’re really proud of and not be able to wear it.

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I’ve had a few dyeing adventures in the past couple weeks. If you’re following my on instagram you will have seen the gradient I dyed!! I am going to start knitting it up to see how it turned out, right after I finish the Halloween socks I’ve been working on.



On the Move-4201

I know! I am a terrible tease to post them in black and white, but they are going to be at the Vancouver show Knit City. I am planning on taking them to Creativ Festival and Woodstock Fleece and Fibre Festival as well so don’t worry if you aren’t going to make it all the way out to BC.



On the Move-4204

That being said we are leaving for Vancouver in one week. It kind of snuck up on me. We’ve been planning this trip since March so it always seemed so far in the future. There were always other things to be concentrating on as well; writing magazine articles, blogging, preparing for the K/W show. All of the sudden we’re down to a single digit count down! I may or may not be panicking a little bit. I’ve got all the yarn in order, but no clothes or anything packed. I know you look at me like, ‘ummm, you still have a week.’ I am very Type A and have to start packing like NOW. Anytime I think of something I need to pack, I go and put it in the suitcase.

On the Move-4187

I kid you not. I started making a list just now and it significantly brought down my anxiety levels. I’ve got lots of advice for places to eat and things to do! I think I may have to go again next year to actually do all of it! I’ve heard Vancouver is beautiful and I have the instinctual feeling I won’t want to leave. Really excited! Has anyone ever been? I am always looking for suggestions for places to eat!!
At Knit City we will be in booth 14, I always look forward to meeting new people so if you’re going to that show be sure to stop by and say hi!! I was looking over the floor plan and there are a lot of people there I have been dying to meet! I am going to have to escape from the booth at some point and wander around. I’ve been looking up some of the vendors I’ve never heard of and it’s looking like it is going to be GREAT!
Super excited, but I really need to go throw a couple things into a suitcase before I have a total breakdown!