News from Double Ewe - Issue 28

July 8, 2009

Holy cow, we’re already a week into July, and I’m just now sending out this newsletter! And because of The Big News (see below), it’s going to be short & sweet.

In my last newsletter, I mentioned that we would be closed this week…but we’re not! We’ve had a couple of things come up that made taking time off right now a little bit difficult. So, don’t stay away – we’re open!

In this issue:

• The Big News
• New Stuff
• Guest Writer
• Stuff To Do At The Shop: Classes, Social Knitting, Skill Builders
• Reminder: Summer Hours

The Big News

We’re moving! Don’t worry, though…we’re not moving far…just a tiny bit West (like maybe 100 feet or so). At the end of the month, we’re going to be moving into a different space in the same shopping center we’re in right now. It’s the spot that’s on the other side of the Deputy Registrar, right next to Lexington Avenue. I’m so excited! It’s a bigger space that’s much (much!) easier to find, with two big windows to give us tons of natural light. I feel like Double Ewe has grown up. ;-)

I’m not sure of the exact date we’ll be in the new space – but we have to be out of our old space by July 31st…so…oh my gosh, I have a lot to do! More to come…

New Stuff

Three new yarns from Cascade have arrived recently:

Cash Vero DK
Sooooo soft and lovely. This is a blend of extrafine merino, microfiber and cashmere that’s a dream to work with. I started with pastels - nice for a luxurious baby gift or something cozy for yourself, and I’m planning on expanding my color selection in the near future. Knits up at about 5.5 stitches per inch.

Pastaza
A wonderfully soft blend of Half llama, half Peruvian highland wool that works well for winter outfits like sweaters, jackets, coats and accessories, and it’s a very good felting option, too. Some of the colors just take my breath away! Quick to knit at a heavy worsted gauge of about 4 stitches per inch.

Cloud 9
Like the name implies, Cloud 9 is extremely soft to the touch with a lovely halo. It’s a 50/50 blend of soft Merino wool and Angora. By blending these two fibers, you can enjoy all the softness of angora without all the shedding it’s known for. 4 stitches per inch.

Guest Writer

Each month, I like to feature a guest columnist. I'd love to see personal essays, technique articles, and book reviews. Tell us about your visit to a woolen mill or to an alpaca farm. Share your personal knitting trials and successes. I’ve gotten great feedback about this feature, so write on! If you're interested in contributing, just email me at kelly@double-ewe-yarn.com. Don't be shy!

No Idle Hands, No Wasted Time

by Cherie Hanson

I learned to knit during coffee breaks back in the early ‘70’s. I knitted the requisite afghan made with a wool yarn that still makes by skin itch just thinking about it. My sister-in-law gave me a pattern for a knitted cotton dishcloth and I made a few of those and then lost interest in knitting. I think that all of my knitting accoutrements were sold for pennies at garage sales or given to a thrift store.

Fast-forward more than 3 decades to mid-2000, 2005 to be exact. I was going though an antique wooden sewing basket and found the knitted dishcloth pattern and a pair of size 8 needles that I had used so many years ago. Holding those needles and looking at that pattern, I knew the time was right for me to resume my knitting avocation. The problem was, I couldn’t remember how to cast on, not even 3 simple stitches. No amount of Internet instructions or diagrams helped me. I needed to be shown. Fortunately, a woman at work was organizing a show and tell session for the crafty staff in our school district. It was from one of those angels (really, her name was Angel!) that I re-learned how to cast on, knit and purl. That was all it took-I became a dishcloth knitting fool! I purchased every color of cotton yarn that JoAnn’s, Michael’s and Wal-Mart had to offer. Then, I discovered a whole new world of cotton yarn colors on-line! I was beginning to build a “stash”!! When my inventory of dishcloths grew into the hundreds, I found a place to consign them. Thank goodness, this enabled me to continue my “passion” to knit with soft, beautifully colored cotton yarn. Whenever I have a few free moments, a dishcloth project in a new pattern and color is never far from my hands.

Up to this point my knitting projects were simple-dish cloths, a scarf or two, some baby projects- but the winter of ‘08/’09 changed my knitting life forever! I really branched out -I learned how to knit mittens. I told someone that knitting mittens is so much fun “it’s a wonder how it could be so much fun and still be legal”! My knitting epiphany was yet to come, however. In March of 2009, I took a “continental (ooh la la!) knitting” class from Kelly at Double Ewe. What an enlightening experience in knitting that was for me. It took some time and practice but once I refined my technique, I was A-MAZED! It is so easy and so fast that I sometimes think I have forgotten a step. I look at my project and wonder how I could have expended so little time and effort and accomplished so much! Believe me, I am no fool, I only do the knit stitch, yarn over and bind off. I have trouble with K2tog and I may have to take a remedial class for the purl stitch. One of Kelly’s tips to control the tension when using the continental stitch was to hook the yarn behind a ring. I found a “knitting ring” at home and it goes into every project bag I carry. “Thanks for the tip, Kelly, I can hardly knit without it!”

Knitting has had a down side for me however-the number of books I am able to read has decreased. To alleviate this nagging problem, I check out audio books on CD’s from the library. This allows me to sit on my deck in the summer, with a cold beer or glass of wine, listen to a mystery book and knit to my heart’s content. What a beautiful day! In the winter, I snuggle into my favorite chair, CD plugged in and my current knitting project at hand. Ahhh-life is good.

So, I have become a knitter. I have a “stash”, lots of knitting gadgets, needle preferences (Bryspun) and bags of projects in various phases of completion. As with all dedicated knitters, I have the ability to quickly grab a project in anticipation of some idle time. Knitting has given me the opportunity to mitigate one of my pet peeves-wasting time. When you knit, there are no idle hands and no wasted time, just the therapeutic feel of the needles, wonderment in the magic of creation and tremendous pride in the production of an item of beauty.

Stuff To Do At The Shop

Classes

*To register for classes: stop in, send an email to kelly@double-ewe-yarn.com, or call 763-780-2465. Payment in full guarantees your spot in the class – if you can’t get to the shop before the class starts, you can hold your spot by calling with a credit card. If you need to cancel, please notify us as soon as possible in case there’s a waiting list. If you notify us at least 24 hours before the class starts, your fees will be refunded. Class fees do not include materials unless noted.
Private group classes: If you and a few friends are interested on one of our classes, we can set up a private class for you that fits your schedules.
Also fun for Girl Scouts, Cub Scouts, 4H-ers, Homeschool groups, etc!
Private individual lessons: If you’d like to schedule a one-on-one lesson, just ask!

Knitter’s Choice (Instructor: Kelly)
Ongoing: Tuesday mornings 10:30 – 12:30 -or- Thursday evenings 6:30 – 8:30
Price: Pay as you go for $10.00 per class session, OR $48/6 session punchcard
Instructor: Kelly
Description: This is an ongoing class; jump in whenever you want! Knitter’s Choice is just that - YOUR choice: you pick the project, we provide the support. Even if you’ve never knit before, we can teach you! Mittens? Socks? Lace? A sweater? Knit what YOU want, but if you get stuck, don't worry, we can guide you along the way. This is a great option if you want to take a class with a friend, but you knit at different levels. Come to just one or all of the classes – knitter’s choice.

Knit Along with Ann
This is an ongoing group – you can jump in any time. From the laughing I hear going on in the back room, it sounds like they’re having fun. If you need some help staying on track with a longer term project – such as an afghan, a shawl, maybe a sweater, let Ann help you along!
Dates: Wednesday afternoons, ongoing
Time: 1:30 – 3:30 (note time change)
Cost: $5 per session; because this is a knit along, you’ll only pay for the sessions you attend.
Instructor: Ann

Social Knitting

Knitting with Ewe – free, no-strings-attached open knitting
Join us for a fun social time while working on whatever you want. No registration required – just show up. We now have three times each week you can join us:
Tuesday evenings: 6:30 – 9:00
Friday afternoons: 1:30 – 4:30
Saturday mornings: 9:00 – 12:00

Charitable KnittersThis group started out as The Mother Bear Project, which is a great charity. We’ve decided to branch out to other charitable knitting projects, such as The Snuggles Project. You can read about both of these projects at their websites: http://www.snugglesproject.org/ and www.motherbearproject.org. If you have a charity you’d like to share with us, come knit with us! No registration required – just show up.
When: The first and third Tuesdays each month, from 2:00 – 4:00.

Skill Builders

Skill Builders are short, mini-classes, each focusing on a single skill. Just drop in at the time and date for the skill you want to learn or brush up on – no need to pre-register, just check the listing for the materials you’ll need to bring. All swatches should be knit from worsted weight yarn and should be at least 3” x 3” unless indicated otherwise; I strongly suggest using a light color. Always bring the needles you used to knit them. If you have any questions or aren’t sure what a the skill being taught is, please don’t hesitate to ask.

Simple SeamsTime & Date: Wednesday July 15th, 6:30 – 7:00
Materials: Two stockinette* swatches, both bound off; tapestry needle

Three Needle Bind OffTime & Date: Saturday July 18th, 1:00 – 1:30
Materials: Two stockinette* swatches, NOT bound off.

*Garter stitch: Knit all rows
*Stockinette stitch:
Row 1: Knit
Row 2: Purl
Repeat rows 1 & 2

Summer Hours (June 1st – September 7th)

Tuesday: 10 am - 9 pm
Wednesday – Thursday: Noon – 8pm
Friday: Noon – 5 pm
Saturday: 9 am - 3 pm
Sun-Monday: Closed

Once again, I want to thank y'all for your support!

Kelly Judson

Double Ewe Yarn Shop
9201 Lexington Ave N #5B
Circle Pines, MN 55014
763.780.2465
www.double-ewe-yarn.com