Another year and another frolic ( ok so it was my first, but I heard some people saying that anyway). I can say this much though, I will be back next year! I don't know who's idea it was to put that much yarn, knitters and knit-related things under one roof, but it certainly was a great one!
The Naked Sheep was at the Frolic in full force, and we certainly lugged the heaviest display up to the Japanese Cultural Center this past Saturday. In case you were not there to see it, I brought my family's old vintage stove up to be used as a display case for our freshly baked goods, hem, yarns. It was great to see the familiar faces of customers and friends, and to meet a lot of new knitters throughout the day. Thanks to Yvette and her appreciation of all my kitchen kitch! Thanks also to Life is Sweet for supplying hungry knitters with delicious cupcakes to nibble as they shop (Luckily they are just down the street from us!) they were a very big hit.
Overall it was a great day, and I'm already counting down to next year's frolic. I hope that the TTC strike didn't inconvenience too many of you. Hope to see everyone back again next year!
This is my first attempt at pattern writing, so please test it out and let me know of anything that is unclear or just plain crazy!
Adorable Amigurumi Cupcakes
5mm and 7mm crochet hooks
Worsted weight yarn, in brownish colour for base
Chunky weight yarn or any combination of fun fluffy yarns for the top of the cupcake
split ring marker or safety pin for counting rounds
large pins for sewing up
Gauge is not important for this project
Round 1: Single crochet (sc) 7 stitches into a loop of yarn. (This is a technique allows you to crochet in the round without a hole in the center of your work. For a better explanation than I could ever give you please refer to Debbie Stoller's book, the Happy Hooker)
Round 2: inc every stitch. 14 stitches
Round 3: repeat *sc 1, inc 1* to end. 21 stitches
Round 4: repeat *sc 2, inc 1* to end. 28 stitches
Rounds 5-7: sc
Round 8: dec 1. sc 7.dec 1. sc 8. dec 1. sc 7. 25 stitches
Continue in sc for another 1/2 inch, or until your work begins to look like a proper cupcake base
cut and knot yarn leaving a long tail for sewing up
Round 1: sc 7 (the same as you did for the base)
Round 2: inc every stitch. 14 stitches
Round 3: repeat *sc 1. inc 1* to end. 21 stitches
Round 4: repeat *sc 2. inc 1* to end. 28 stitches
Round 5: sc all stitches
cut and knot yarn
Stuff the cupcake base with stuffing
Pin the top of your cupcake to your base (I did this evenly spaced in 4 places)
Using your darning needle and the long tail you left from your base sew your cupcake together using overcast stitches
Voila! Your very own cute little cupcake. I recommend making more than one because these tasty treats will go fast :)
Many of you are likely already aware that this Saturday coming is the most earth shattering knitting event of the season; the Knitter's Frolic! Okay, so this is my first Frolic, and I don't exactly know what to expect, but I am completely convinced that it will be earth shattering.
The Knitter's Frolic will be held at the Japanese Cultural Center on Saturday, April 26. For more information you can visit the Downtown Knitting Collective's web site where they have vendor and class lists as well as directions and even accomodation info! Just about everyone who has anything to do with knitting in the city will be there with a booth full of goodies, including the Naked Sheep.
Sarah and I will be facing a rather early and coffee riddled morning on Saturday, as our booth is set to open up early (8:30). This is a blessing for me actually because I'm sure that excitement will keep me from sleeping the night before anyway. We have a great selection of yarn, bags, books and more, so be sure to check us out while you're there; Our booth will be located near the entrance to the cafeteria. We also would like to invite you to participate in a little challenge of ours: Our booth has a super sweet theme, and in keeping with that theme we have decided to supply Life is Sweet mini cupcakes to the first 20 people to drop by and mention our yummy code phrase, "Life is sweet at the Naked Sheep". These are not just any old cupcake, so plan on getting there early because they won't last long! I should also mention that the cupcake pictured above and below, will be at the frolic as well (yes, it is very cute) and I'm working on a pattern for it that I will post up on this blog very soon.
Thanks for reading, and I hope to see you at the Frolic!
Just in case the beautiful weather hasn't tipped you off yet, spring is here! Another sure sign of spring here at the Naked Sheep is the arrival of the Mission Falls 1824 Cotton! And I'm pleased to say that it arrived yesterday, and brought the sunshine with it!
New for this year is the verigated balls of 1824 cotton. They are so bright and cheery!
which contains some beautiful spring and summer tops and bags for adults. Of course, we also have lots of Mission Falls kids patterns as well, as it's a great light, machine washable cotton for people of all ages!
Emily here with some very exciting news...new Lexie Barnes bags and colours arrived on Wednesday! Yes, it is true, three amazing new patterns in an endless assortment of styles. We've already had the pleasure of test driving the new Gem bag, and are happy to announce that it is the perfect size for an on-the-go sock project, plus those other less-important things like keys, wallet, etc. Drop by the store to check out some more new Lexie bags, luggage tags, needle cases and more!
in other news, our spring cleaning efforts at the store are in full force (it appears that we have built up quite the stash over the winter!) and as a result we will be offering an extra 10% off of all the yarns in our sale bin. This means 35% off! Come in and shop while you can, because it doesn't look like our sale bin will survive this spring cleaning sale!
A new pattern will be available at the Sheep as of this evening: The Coffee Morning Shawl.
A month or two ago, Lorena told me about a very interesting new yarn she's carrying... Rosario's Sole Latte. It's made of milk fibre. (Seems to be entirely lactose free, for those that worry about that sort of thing... ;-))
I played with it for a while, swatched, blocked, tried it on different size needles, worked a few different stitch patterns, and I was very pleasantly surprised with the results.
It holds a block very well, and the variegation is enough to add visual interest to a lace pattern without overwhelming it.
The idea for the Coffee Morning Shawl was born. I chose a stitch pattern that reminded me of a coffee bean....
And I messed with the geometry a bit. Triangle shawls are great, but they're often very large and overwhelming. I wanted the wrap of a triangle without the length...
so it's a open square.... And what you get is a lovely, not-too-challenging lace project that uses only two ball of this fab new yarn. It's nice and light for spring and summer, and the colours are excellent. Don't you have an upcoming coffee break that needs a nice shawl?
As we've mentioned before, there's lots of new Silk Garden Light in the store... I decided to knit up a sample in it, and The Baby Surprise Jacket was the obvious choice.
It was designed by Elizabeth Zimmermann in 1968, and is a genius design. When you are finished knitting this all-garter stitch piece, it looks something like this :
very bizarre indeed! However, you sew two seams at the armholes, and this strange piece of fabric becomes a beautiful baby sweater!
Silk Garden Lite is really a great yarn for this pattern, because the garter stitch, and the design really highlight the colour changes. This project took three balls, with enough of the third ball left to make a pair of matching booties, or a hat!
The pattern for this amazing sweater is available in many of Elizabeth Zimmermann's books, including The Opinionated Knitter, and Knitters Workshop. These are books that are an amazing addition to any knitters library, just because of the sheer inspiration and brilliance in her patterns. We have both those books, plus Knitters Almanac in stock now, so come on in and have a look, at the books and the sweater, hanging over the Silk Garden!
Just in case you've been living under a rock for the past six months I am here to tell you that Noro Kureyon sock yarn has finally arrived! If you happen to hear hysterical squealing as you pass by the Sheep its just me (Emily) rejoicing because my yarn has worked itself into another glorious stripe. Yes, Kureyon sock is available in a handful of the most popular Kureyon colourways. It is 420 meters of 30% nylon and 70% wool, more than enough to make a pair of socks for bigfoot! Stripe-lovers rejoice because self striping socks have just been taken to a new level of awesome.
A good striped sock is an invaluable possession, but I wanted to see what else I could do with this yarn. I decided on the Swallowtaill Shawl from Interweave Fall 2006, and am happy to report that Kureyon sock and lace get along quite well. This yarn is a single ply, and it is unevenly spun changing quickly from the thickness of dental floss to a big wad of fleece. I think that this rustic sort of look lends itself very well to lace, and contrasts wonderfully with the psychedelic colours that are always popping up.
I am about half way through my Swallowtail, and loving it! I will keep you posted on its progress (it should be done quickly, as I can't seem to put it down!)
Another project that I promised to keep you updated on (and forgot about) is my Superior Ice Queen! It has long since been completed, and looks great; and finally, here are some pics of the finished product...