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The unofficial kick-off of summer in Ontario is almost upon us! Here at Needles in the Hay we see this as the perfect opportunity to cast on a new project for some relaxing dockside knitting. Or on the back deck, or in the garden or by campfire, or binging Netflix… whatever makes your heart and hands happy. To help inspire you we’ve put together a list of long weekend worthy projects to cast-on. So let’s grab a beer and our needles and get started!
Featured in the latest edition of Interweave Knits, this is the kind of tee we could see being a constant fixture in our wardrobe. Simple but super wearable. Recently Myak shared a quote about this pattern directly from the designer, Sarah Solomon:
“This sweater design began because I loved the way the mYak baby yak silk felt in shawl samples but since I always find myself thinking in sweaters I thought I would experiment with creating a whisper-light shawl-like fabric for a garment. I'm very happy with the result, which I think would be a great transition season and warm weather piece. It also makes excellent brainless beach/lake/park knitting for summer."
A bright and new pattern from Katie Davies, this light, simple pullover updates the classic style of the maritime gansey with its ingeniously weable shaping. According to Kate, “seavaiger” is a Scots neologism meaning “seafarer”. While our water bodies are a bit more modest here in the Kawarthas, I’m this sweater would be equally as comfortable on the dock at Stoney Lake.
Janina Kallio is known for relaxing knits and contemporary design and this shawl is no different! Summer Meadow is the perfect project for lazy summer days. Big and floaty, this shawl is an absolute beauty with its delicate details and breathtaking lightness.
In addition to being a fantastic designer, Clare Mountain is also one of our colleagues at the Fibre Co. She’s designed this easy, breezy tank with lots of beautiful details to keep things interesting. I has a split hem with twister rid faux cables travelling up the side panels, and tubular selvedges frame the armholes quite nicely. This would be a nice quick knit in Luma, which is a super soft and breathable blend of merino, organic cotton, linen, and silk by the Fibre Co.
We’ve seen several renditions of the weekender sweater come through the doors at Needles in the Hay, and they always look fab, and their makers always love how they turned out! This sweet little number is sure to be a perennial favourite. Plus, with the newest marls in Shelter there’s even more colour options! Here’s what Andrea had to say about this pattern:
“This drop shoulder sweater is my most favorite addition to my handmade wardrobe! When Brooklyn Tweed came out with their line of marls for Shelter, I knew I needed a marled sweater. I combined my favorite attributes - texture, faux seams, drop shoulder, and some positive ease to create this versatile, flattering sweater! No matter your body type, it is perfect for wearing to the office or out on your weekend hike in the woods. I’ve already knit a second version, leaving off the sleeves so I can wear it in warmer weather or layered over a long sleeve tee!”
Local Yarn Store Day is a brick and mortar shop appreciation day created by the TNNA Yarn Group. Launched in 2018, the second annual Local Yarn Store Day will take place on April 27 and is designed to show support for small businesses while bringing together a unique community of knitters, crocheters, weavers and spinners to drive awareness and celebrate the craft.
We’ve got some fun ideas cooked up and we hope you’ll join us this Saturday to celebrate the bricks and mortar yarn stores that keep our fibre arts community going.
Knit Along Reunion 12pm to 2pm
Visit us during Local Yarn Store day wearing a finished object from one of our Knit Alongs and be entered into a draw for a fabulous prize! Enjoy some refreshments, meet your fellow knitters and see what beautiful things they’ve been making. The prize includes 5 skeins of Manos Alegria Grande in the Tahiti colourway, a needle roll, and a Laine Magazine "My Knitting Notes" Journal.
The Fibre Co. Bundle
Saturday only, buy any pattern designed with Fibre Co. yarns, plus the yarn to make the Project and we’ll give you 15% off the entire thing! (Cannot be combined with other discounts)
April is for lace at Needles in the Hay! We’ll be kicking off the month with a Lace Workshop in the evening on Wednesday April 3 from 7 to 9pm. Space is limited so be sure to sign up early. You can find all of the details here.
To continue to build upon your lace skills, we’ll be doing a Pi-shawl Knit Along which will appeal to both experienced and beginner lace knitters alike.
Pi-shawls are both beautiful and versatile. They’re a great introduction to the world of lace knitting because they are knit in the round so you don’t have to worry about that pesky wrong side. Worked from the middle outwards, most Pi-Shawls only have 6 or 7 increase rows in the whole project which gives you many many rows of relaxing knitting. Don’t think you’ll wear a lace shawl? No Problem! Just scale up your yarn choice to DK, Worsted, or Aran and you’ve got yourself a fantastic blanket or throw for your couch. We’ve made yarn recommendations for each pattern selection, but really, the possibilities are endless.
We’ll be kicking things off on Sunday April 7, but feel free to come in anytime up until then to get set-up. As usual, participation in the KAL is free with yarn purchase. It’s not a structured class, but it’s the perfect opportunity to get some support on your project and hang out with some like minded kniterly people.
Here’s the knitty gritty:
April 7 - Cast-on Party! 12 to 2pm April 28 - Check Point Meet-up 1 to 3pm May 26 - Wrap-up and Show off 1 to 3pm
Hope you can join us on this Knit Along Adventure! And just so you know, if you feel like you aren’t keeping up with the group, you can still come. Don’t stay away, we love to see your progress and cheer you on.
In just two weeks we’ll be saying goodbye winter and hello spring (I know, hard to believe!). We’ve got a lot to share with you this spring & summer but we’re kicking off the season by introducing a new yarn to our Fibre Co. offerings: Acadia!
Acadia is a rustic blend of silk noil, baby alpaca and fine merino wool and is one of the most versatile yarns in The Fibre Co. collection. Ideal for creating a handmade wardrobe that can be worn almost all year round, Acadia comes in a wide range of colours. Warm browns and cool neutrals sit beside rich reds and greens, in a way that evokes memories of the state of Maine and the great park of the same name. Most of the shades in Acadia have a heathered appearance created from layers of beautiful raw fibres of natural brown baby alpaca, ecru merino tops and silk noil, which is then kettle dyed creating subtle duotones that are the hallmark of The Fibre Co.
We love Acadia for its sheen, softness, and drape, while still maintaining the structure of wool thanks to the 60% merino content and a high twist in the 2 ply structure. What better way to celebrate than with a Knit Along!
1 - It’s super adorable (obviously a high priority) 2 - It’s top down structure and 3 quarter sleeves means that it knits up quickly 3 - Great spring layering piece 4 - Perfect excuse to try some Acadia!
If Acadia doesn’t float your boat, we think this pattern would also work beautifully in the Fibre Co. Luma, or mYak Baby Yak medium. Both of which would provide sheen, drape, softness, and complex colours with lots of depth.
Sarah will be kicking things off on March 24th while Deanna is in Edinburgh for EYF. As usual, participation in the KAL is free with yarn purchase. It’s not a structured class, but it’s the perfect opportunity to get some support on your project and hang out with some like minded kniterly people.
Meet-up dates are as follows:
March 24: 1pm to 3pm Project set-up and cast-on party!
April 14: 1pm to 3pm Mid point check-up
May 5: 1pm to 3pm Finishing up and showing off.
Hope you can join us on this Knit Along Adventure! And just so you know, if you feel like you aren’t keeping up with the group, you can still come. Don’t stay away, we love to see your progress and cheer you on.
Hi Everyone, Deanna here! Laine 7 is due to be released this Friday and we’re super excited about this issue which provides even further proof that colourwork is hot right now. Choosing yarn and colours for a project is one of my favourite parts of knitting and owning a yarn store, so I’m going to run through my favourite patterns in this issue and share my picks! The pattern previews are on Ravelry right now, giving you all week to plot your next knitting adventure before the magazine becomes available this Friday February 15th.
We’ve also received a lot of requests lately for standing order of Laine. If you want to sign up for a magazine standing order, you can do so now by filling out this form. This will help us to make sure everyone who wants a copy will be able to get one on and about release day.
Here we go! In no particular order… except for the fact that I’m putting my favourite first…
Marit By: Kristin Drysdale
If you’ve been joining us on the Pascal Cardian KAL, this would be a gorgeous next step in your steeking journey. I love this all over colourwork cardigan so much. Simple and beautiful.
For a soft and dreamy look with a bit of rustic flair, Brooklyn Tweed Loft would be my choice, and the potential colour palettes are endless! For a more bold graphic look with jewel tones, and a softer hand with a subtle halo, try The Fibre Co’s Cumbria Fingering.
Calla By: Natasja Hornby
This is shaping up to be the most popular pattern in this issue, and deservedly so! The Calla Lily motifs nestled amongst minimalist lace and soft texture stitches are so lovely. I would knit this is mYak’s Baby Yak Medium which has a rounded 3 ply structure which will make the textures pop. It also has the softness of alpaca but without any of the heavyness, it’s light like cashmere. Speaking of Cashmere… June Cashmere DK would also be an stunning choice for this heirloom shawl. Both yarns also have zero depigmentation, and the subtle brown hues that peak through the natural dyes give them both beautiful depth and dimension.
Bohus By: Carol Feller
The throwback colourwork motif and casual drop sleeve make this the perfect cozy pullover to wear with your favourite pair of jeans. I would knit this in the Fibre Co. Lore to stay true to that vintagey look. Lore’s gauge works here, but you may have to size up to a 4mm needle. The complex heathers of Lore will make picking colours so much fun.
Talla By: Dami Hunter
You know I am a sucker for mosaic colourwork. For those of you who find stranded colourwork tedius, mosaic is the answer. You work one colour at a time using slipped stitches to create the graphic pattern. I love that this cowl is knit in the round making it completed double sided, hiding all of the “business” on the inside and grafted for a seamless finish. Because gauge isn’t super critical here, the field is wide open for yarn choices. The #1 concern when you are doing mosaic is contrast. The most successful mosaics use high contrast colours, and we have to be super careful when choosing variegated or colour washed yarns. For amazing stitch definition and a vast colour palette, Brooklyn Tweed Peerie would be hard to beat. For something a little more fun and offbeat, I’d be tempted to use Mad Tosh Merino Light in Neon Peach and Pebble.
Nerea By: Fiber Tales
This little number I find intriguing mainly because of the sideways construction and the caliper cable detail on the sleeves which is pretty darn cool. For a smooth, defined and minimalistic look I would recommend Brooklyn Tweed Arbor. If you are craving something more soft and luxurious, with some drape, but still the structure of wool and a bit of rustic character, try The Fibre Co. Acadia. We will be introducing Acadia to our lineup in a couple of weeks, and I’m certain you’re going to fall in love with it.
This winter, leading in to their next collection “Winter 19” being released on January 16, Brooklyn Tweed is hosting a virtual knit along to help build your colourwork skills, and we’re joining in.
The main project for this KAL is the upcoming Pascal Cardigan which will be released with the new collection. It’s a super cozy steeked colourwork cardigan by Gudrun Johnston with a garter stitch collar. Knit in bulky weight Quarry, this is a quick project which will allow you to get some new skills under your belt in record time.
How do you join Brooklyn Tweed’s Winter of Colourwork KAL?
First, choose your favorite yarn and knitting project that features stranded colorwork (yoke motif or allover motif — as long as it’s stranded, anything is fair game!). We recommend going with the Pascal cardigan being released on January 16. Whatever project you choose should be knit using BT yarn, worked from a BT pattern, or both.
Then, head over to the Winter of Colorwork KAL Chatter thread on Ravelry to introduce yourself and share your plan for what you’re going to knit. Feel free to include any questions or topics you’d like the KAL to address.
Deanna & Ethan will be knitting along Pascal as well, and sharing video updates along the way. We’ll also have check points here at the shop where you can get moral support! Brooklyn Tweed will be releasing a series of blog posts to help you along the way and keep you on track.
We hope everyone is having a wonderful holiday so far! Now that Christmas is behind us, it’s time to announce our annual post holiday Selfish Knit Along! You’ve probably been spending the last couple of months knitting gifts for friends and family. Now it’s time for a little self care, and to make a gorgeous new piece just for you.
This year’s theme is Laine Magazine! There are 6 issues out in the world right now, and their classic cozy Scandinavian style is a real favourite around these parts.
Participation in the KAL is free with purchase of yarn.
Here are the Meeting details:
Meeting 1 Project Set-up & Cast on – Sunday January 13 from 12:30pm to 2:30pm
Meeting 2 Check Point – Sunday February 10 from 12:30pm to 2:30pm
Meeting 3 Finishing and Show & Tell! – Sunday March 3rd from 12:30pm to 2:30pm
Deanna and Ethan have each picked their top 5 Patterns from the first 6 issues of Laine Magazine and provided their yarn suggestions. Hopefully these will inspire you, but feel free to go with whatever grabs you! Please join us in the shop this new year for some selfish knitting fun! Can’t wait to see what you’ll pick.
For a bang on gauge substitution which will have amazing definition and colour choice, try Brooklyn Tweed Peerie. If you are feeling a bit more adventurous, June Cashmere Lace, which is actually more like a light fingering, would be dreamy but require a bit more swatching to get right.
Not only is this a smart design with interesting textured details, designer Clare Mountain is a friend to the shop who we met at TNNA. With our new stock of Madeline Tosh rolling out right after new year, this will be a great opportunity to try it out. The only downside is that the Mad Tosh comes in 6 ball bags so it won't be able to accommodate larger sizes.
After meeting mYak co-founder Paola Vanzo at TNNA in June, we connected immediately and knew that we needed to bring home this beautifully softy and heartwarming ethically sourced yarn.
mYak is the story of a journey that started on the Tibetan Plateau with its nomadic people, and landed in Italy, at the foot of the Alps, where the traditional culture of yarn-making meets style. It’s the story of a natural and human wonder. It’s the story of mountain peoples united in their ability to appreciate the beauty and strength of a natural fiber that is among the most precious and most rare in the world.
Baby yak fibre soft as cashmere, warmer than merino wool, this smooth undercoat protects the animals even when the outside temperature plummets to minus 40 below. Baby yaks’ undercoat is a very fine and extremely strong natural fiber that allows the garments made with this yarn to have an almost infinite life-span and to be handed down from one generation to the next. Exactly like the wisdom at the heart of yak herding and of the manufacturing of the yarn obtained from their undercoat.
Learn more about how mYak came to be by visiting their website here.
There is already a whole host of beautiful patterns for you to explore. mYak has had great design support with patterns from favourite designers Melanie Berg, Michele Wang, Joji Locatelli and Olga Buraya-Kefelian.
Here are some of our Favourite projects to inspire you to try this exciting new yarn. Come visit us in the shop to see our completed verions of Joji Locatelli's Hipster Shawl in mYak Baby Yak Medim, and Fading Point in Baby Yak | Silk Fingering.
Joji Locatelli is one of our perennial favourites! Her Fading Point wrap is a masterclass in shaping, as well as being a super satisfying but also relaxing knit. It may seem daunting, but it's knit in two pieces and the colour chevrons mean that it feels like it's going by really quickly! We used Baby Yak | Silk in Daikini, Savitri, Prana, Parvati, and Indra! https://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/fading-point
Joji's Hipster Shawl in Baby Yak Medium is a super wearable cresent shape that can be draped over your shoulders or worn as a scarf. We are also a bit of a sucker for a tasteful fringe. Come see ours which is knit in the Saffron colourway. https://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/hipster-shawl
Two Roads by Melanie Berg is all about texture and beautiful winding cables. The i-cord bind off also gives it a really professional finished look. We love Melanie's Shawl patterns too because they're always so generously sized. You can also get this one in her new Shawl book. Knit in Baby Yak Medium. https://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/two-roads-3
By now you’ve probably seen our Holiday Gift Guide where we share our ideas on what to make for your friends and family this holiday season. Now that December is here it’s time for our 2018 Stitchers’ Wishlist! We’ve curated a collection of gift ideas that would be perfect for any fibre artist’s stocking. Send your loved ones our way and we’ll make sure to help them get the perfect gift for you this holiday season.
Brittany Black Walnut Knitting Needles and Birch Crochet Hooks
We met Michri and her husband Chris at TNNA this spring and they are wonderful people who created each and every beautiful hook and needle by hand from sustainable black walnut and birch. Brittany is committed to environmental stewardship and have done everything possible to make an environmentally conscious product from the sustainably harvested wood they use to their 100% recycled and recyclable packaging.
Addi Click Interchangeable Needle Sets
All the staff in the shop adore Addi Interchangeable needles and use them constantly. They come with a wide range of sizes from 3.5mm up to 10.00mm all of the most common cable lengths, a needle gauge/gauge ruler, and a carrying case. The spring mounted joins mean that your tips are locked on and won’t come unscrewed. The cords are extremely flexible and the coating makes them extra zippy. We can’t say enough good things about these sets. Those German’s really know what they’re doing. While it’s a bit of investment up front, it’s certainly much more economical and manageable than buying needles in every size and length.
June Cashmere DK & Light Fingering/Lace Weight Yarn
The most luxurious yarn we have in the shop right now, June Cashmere is a top quality cashmere yarn in a gorgeous palette of sophisticated colours suitable for making heirloom garments. Not only is it among the best cashmere you can buy in the world, June Cashmere also has a strong sense of social responsibility. They work directly with the semi nomadic shepherds of Kyrgyzstan to pay them a fair wage while also supporting them in developing their infrastructure to succeed in the industry. The result is an extremely pure, high quality cashmere fibre which is combed from the goats by hand. The yarn has been spun in the UK in the British tradition and will bloom and soften over the life of the garment with blocking and wearing.
Cuckoo for Cocoknits!
We recently brought in these great innovative tools for knitters and everything in our collection would make great stocking stuffers!
-Hand forged yarn snips -Maker’s Keep Slap bracelet – the perfect multifunction tool for all makers! Will attach to anything metal, stitch markers, stitch fixer, row counter, cable needle -Leather Stitch Holder kit: Comes with needles so you can knit right off of the holders, no need to remount the stitches!
-Sweater Care Kit & Knitters Block: These kits have everything you need to finish and care for your knitted garments.
Adorn your favourite Projects with JUL!
We just received a shipment of gorgeous new shawl pins, penannular brooches and leather closures. JUL creates original jewelry designs that take your knit and crochet-wear beyond functional to fabulous style. Their diverse collections of artisanal US-made and Fair Trade shawl pins and sticks not only keep your garments and accessories secure; their beautiful and original knitwear jewelry grants you the opportunity to develop your unique look!
Books and Magazines! We always have a selection of the hottest magazines in knitting and this fall has seen some amazing and creative editions. Our favourites are the latest issue of Pom Pom guest edited by Norah Gaughan, and Making’s Black & White issue. Of course, Laine Magazine is also worth every penny.
Adorable Notions from NNK Press
It’s definitely hard to resist NNK Press’ brand of functional and irresistibly cute accessories and notions. A welcome addition to any maker’s kit
-Stitch marker tins with vintage images and hand poured enamel
- Woodland Creature Notion Kits – includes stitch markers, darning needle, t-pins, and the most perfect little bonsai scissors for snipping yarn
-Porcupine t-pin tin
-Floral notions pouch: canvass pouch perfectly sized for all of your bits and bobs. Included waxed interior that protects against direct and writing implements.
There’s always a Gift Card!
You may have noticed the vast majority of our gift selections are tools and accessories. That’s because yarn can be a really personal choice! If you really want to give the gift of yarn then a gift card is a great option. Our gift cards function in both our bricks and mortar and online stores! If your loved one has shopped with us because we can also help by reviewing their purchase history and helping you to find something they will love!
But you REALLY want to give them yarn!
Ok, Ok...! Here are our top picks for soft and sumptuous yarns that every fibre artist will love, aside from June Cashmere of course.
Road to China Light by the Fibre Co.: A blend of baby alpaca, camel, cashmere and silk with stunning dye in jewel tones. Nobody has touched this yarn and not wished they could bring it home. Three skeins makes a beautiful Mackenzie River Cowl.
Metalico by Blue Sky Fibers: This yarn is 50% baby Alpaca, 50% silk and blended in a way that gives it a metallic sheen. Completely natural and dye free it blows are mind how Blue Sky Fibers is able to achieve the metallic look with the fibre alone. Make a buttery soft scarf or drapey poncho.
Sweet Georgia Tough Love Sock: Sock knitter on your list? This Canadian hand dyed sock yarn is one of our best sellers! Sweet Georgia boasts unapologetic colour in a sturdy base of 80% superwash merino and 20% nylon. One skein makes one pair.
Peerie by Brooklyn Tweed: Their newest yarn is a 4 ply fingering weight in 100% American Merino. With a stunning palette of 45 colours, Peerie is sure to have something for everyone! Get 2 skeins to knit Jared Flood new Hazelfern socks, or put together a fun colour combination to make the Lucerne or Galloway colourwork hats.
Hopefully we’ve given you some gift ideas that you can use! For your convenience we’ve put the whole wishlist together in a convenient collection so you can view all the products in one place.
Once again, Needles in the Hay will be participating in the Black Friday Festivities downtown Peterborough on Nov 23!
EXTENDED HOURS: We will be opening early, at 8:00am and staying open late until 8:00pm on Nov 23! Our sale will continue for regular hours over the weekend, then into Monday for the online store only.
Shop downtown on Nov. 23 at more than 100 participating downtown businesses! Use your Holiday Shopping Passport and you could win up to $3,000 in downtown gift certificates. Parking is free for two hours starting Black Friday through to the end of December.
We'll be offering some fantastic deals both in store and online:
Brooklyn Tweed Bundle: buy any Brooklyn Tweed Pattern and accompanying yarn and receive 15% off the project. We don't do discounts on BT very often so take advantage of this unique opportunity.
15% off Amano Yana XL, a super bulky highland wool that is soft and squishy as merino.
Deep discounts on various selected yarns up to 50% off.
Yarn by the pound (in store only): Select any yarn from our sale bins and pay only $20 per 200g no matter what it is!
Some sales yarns are in limited quantities so be sure to arrive early to avoid disappointment!