Delightful surprises awaited me at every turn when I walked into My Sister Knits after being in England and Scotland and completely out of touch for three weeks!There are new samples, new enamel pins, new bags, and new classes among the delights!One of the first items that caught my eye was the Arika sample.We love this kerchief-shaped cowl designed by Jane Richmond for winter wear so much that we modified it for summer! The original has yards of eye-catching fringe but we decided to leave it off of our summer version. We also used linen to make it hot-weather friendly. Quince & Co's aran weight Kestrel was our linen of choice. This makes a fun accessory for a summer's day!When I went upstairs to see what was new, I immediately saw a group of items made with Hue Loco's Backyard Chicken sets. Any of these projects answers the question, "What do I do with these fun sets of yarn?".There are two hats, one sweater, and a pair of socks for your inspiration! Our supply of Backyard Chicken sets is limited but these sample show marvelous ways to use up some of your odds and ends of yarn that are in your stash waiting for 'just the right thing'! Be sure to check them out when you're in the shop! My personal favorite is the Flax Light sweater designed by tincanknits with the contrasting rib and garter ridge detail which are modifications we added. I know a toddler who is going to get one this fall!With some more poking around the shop, I found several new bags and these in particular are noteworthy. Ann found them when she went to Squam this past month. Squam is a lake in New Hampshire; it's also a gathering of artists and makers. We encourage you to check out the link!These are one-of-a-kind handmade, and sometimes hand stitched, bags created by Karen Stevens who lives in Connecticut. We have both cross-body and tote styles. Ann would love to talk to you about them in detail and about her glorious weekend at Squam!And this isn't all I found; there's also an Anzula trunk show with samples galore and some intriguing class offerings!It's fun to walk into My Sister Knits after being gone and discover what's new. Be sure to allow yourself some browsing time if it's been a few weeks since you've been in!
My Sister Knits now offers a new, cutting edge class taught by Kimberly: Visible Mending and Embroidering Knitwear! The dates are Tuesdays April 24 and May 1 from 6 until 8pm. There is a movement afoot in the crafting community that embraces visible mending as an artform and a thing of beauty. Mending our well-loved and often-worn hand knitted and crocheted items allows them to become whole again and have another lease on life! It can easily become a meditative practice in addition to being a functional one.This is a new idea to a lot of us! Just think of all the pieces of clothing that have been given up on because of a place that needed mending but it would show, which wasn’t acceptable. With the Visible Mending movement gaining popularity, we can intentionally draw attention to spots where pieces have worn through, become snagged and torn, or been chewed by your cat. Visible Mending and embroidering can enhance the beauty of a garment and add uniqueness, giving it a style and personality all its own. As Aicha Abbadi, Berlin-based fashion designer, maker, and theorist says about Visible Mending, “…... the proponents of this tradition strongly believe that the act of repair does not only serve to bring a garment back to its original state, but rather adds to its value and demarcates a visible episode in its history by inscribing traces of use and care.”Kimberly will teach applique which is patching from the front, reverse applique which is patching from behind, darning which is mending a hole, embroidery and duplicate stitch which are decorative.Sign up for this class while there is still room and start rescuing your precious but threadbare handmade garments! Call the shop at 970.407.1461 or sign up online.
Do you ever think of having a knitting adventure? Are you ever not quite sure how something will turn out but you forge ahead anyway, putting your faith in the pattern and/or designer?Adventure is defined as an unusual and exciting experience; the encountering of risks; a wild and exciting undertaking! The two concepts of ‘knitting’ and ‘adventure’ are rarely thought of together but it makes total sense to us knitters and crocheters! Every time we start a new project we are embarking on an adventure! Even more so if we have the courage, determination, and faith in ourselves to try something new. The nice thing for knitters and crocheters is that there isn’t an abundance of risk involved. The worst that can happen is that we need to rip back and start anew. That may be plenty of risk for us but, in the grand scheme of things, it isn’t much. Our level of adventure lies in our experience with what we’re doing. For a newbie, following a pattern is an intimidating experience. The heady feeling of accomplishment when finishing your first pattern gives you the confidence to try another one!Have you always loved lacy shawls but your lack of practical knowledge of charts and increases and decreases has given you pause? We encourage you to decide to embark on a ‘wild and exciting undertaking’ and choose a project! Perhaps one that has a lace edging and not an all-over lace pattern to whet your whistle! Here is a post that gives explicit guidance for your first lace chart.How about cables? A sweater? A new texture pattern? How about something that requires knitting in the round like a cowl or hat?For support, we have classes, Fearless Knitting drop in help on Thursdays and Saturdays from 11 - 1, and we are always more than happy to help you at any time. There is a plethora of helpful websites for when you can’t get to the shop. Jenny always found that she needed help at 5:15 on a Saturday so she became familiar with many online resources! Some of our favorites are Knitting Help, Knit Purl Hunter, Knit Freedom, and Very Pink. Google what you need help with and you’ll find plenty of articles and videos to choose from! Start your next project with a spirit of adventure; encounter risks and have yourself an ‘unusual and exciting experience’! We’d love to hear about it along the way!
Knitting classes are perfect for February! The holidays are behind us and we're kind of slogging along until spring. They offer a chance to immerse ourselves in something new to enhance our knitting skills.We have a selection of classes for you to choose from!
Kria Cardigan, Saturdays February 10th through March 3rd, 1pm-3pm
You can learn all of the techniques needed for an adult Icelandic sweater on a small scale in Karen's Kria class! This child sized sweater is made with worsted weight yarn and size 7 needles so it will knit up speedily. The colorwork pattern is ideal for newbies! There is still room so sign up posthaste for this class; it starts Saturday the 10th. Hold your breath, for under Karen's tutelage you're going to learn how to make a button band or put in a zipper and.......steek!
Milet Mittens, Thursdays February 8 through 22nd, 5:30 - 7:30pm
Here is another colorwork class, taught by Amelia. These mittens are made with fingering weight yarn and size 2.5 needles for the most part. The chart is easy to read and follow, especially with a piece of highlighter tape to mark your spot! The pattern on the main part of the mitten is the 'lice' pattern, a mainstay of Norwegian knitting.
Finishing Techniques, Saturday February 17th, 9 - 11am
In this class, you will learn how to finish your project so it looks 'handmade' rather than 'homemade'! Amelia will show you how to weave in ends, the best way to block different types of projects from lace to cables and everything in between, and will answer any questions you may have.
Fixing Mistakes, Wednesday February 21st, 5:30 - 7pm
Overheard in the shop, "I think the Fixing Mistakes class is too advanced for me. I'll wait until I'm a better knitter to take it". This may be a common fallacy. This class is perfect for new knitters! What better way to gain some experience with common errors? Mistakes are a part of knitting and this class offers valuable experience in not-panicking when you have an opportunity to learn (i.e., make a mistake!). Taught by Amelia, this class often fills up quickly but is offered on a regular basis. If you don't get into this one, you can get into the next one!Sign up for any of these classes online or call the shop at 970.407.1461!
Rarely do we get teachers and designers of Elizabeth Doherty's caliber to teach in Fort Collins. We are incredibly lucky to have the experience of learning from her the weekend of November 4th and 5th! There are three classes available; Warming Up to Linen, Tailored Pockets for Any Sweater, and Top-Down Set-In Sleeves.Just a few weeks ago I had the unforgettable opportunity to take her Top-Down Set-In Sleeve class and it changed the way I will knit sweaters forever! I've only made cardigans and I now have the skills to make a pullover! That fits! My cardigans always fall off my shoulders. The armholes are too big which results in extra fabric under my arms. Elizabeth taught how to fix those problems and I am over the moon about that! I can't wait to cast on a sweater using my new knowledge!Elizabeth's class walks us through her ideas about how to create a classic fit that flatters. Her top down patterns allow us to try on our sweaters as we go. Her class covers both the techniques and the math involved in modifying other patterns for a better fit. She measures each student! Having those numbers gives us the tools we need to improve the fit of any sweater pattern!Sweaters with shoulder seams and set-in sleeves provide a better fit than other styles due to their structure. Unfortunately, that usually includes sleeve and side seams which are intimidating. Thanks to Elizabeth's class, I will never have to sew a side seam or set in a sleeve again and neither will you! She teaches exactly how to pick up armhole stitches and knit the sleeves top-down. In any sweater!Trying on her samples is a voyage of discovery! Patterns that you might not have thought would work for your figure are as flattering as they are comfortably wearable. I was happily surprised by several of them!Elizabeth has an engineer's mind and approaches knitting in a unique way. She notices problems, figures out how to solve them, and the rest of us benefit! She has some surprising tips and tricks to improve stitch consistency and prevent 'rowing out'. I have always had a problem with a hole at the underarm when joining a sleeve. No matter how many people I asked or how much research I did, I could not find a way to eliminate it. Elizabeth has a marvelously simple way to avoid the gap entirely!This class is essential for any sweater knitter whether you're planning your first one or your tenth! Not only will you have a valuable learning experience, you will have fun doing it! Plus, Elizabeth will tell us her secret to life!Knowing how much I learned from this class, I can't wait for the other two she's teaching! Take advantage of this fantastic chance to learn from one of the best right in our own back yard! Call the shop now to secure a spot in one or all of Elizabeth's classes! 970.407.1461