Thursday, December 21, 2017

We made it!

YES! We made it through Christmas !!

Did you get all of your projects finished in time to put under the tree? I DID NOT!

I told my family this year is an IOU Christmas. I got involved in other projects and committees and to put it very simply ran out of energy and time.

I am a little older (and hopefully wiser) and I made the decision to give my children, grandchildren and great-grand-children either a store-bought Christmas gift or an IOU 😍.

As there was something for everyone in their stockings and the youngest grandchild is 12 - there were no tears or temper tantrums. Everyone wanted to spend time visiting, skating and going for walks.  The focus was on spending time together and catching up.

My husband and I even went so far to have request everyone contribute to Christmas Dinner! Heresy! What a concept! I have a sneaky suspicion my daughter-in-laws almost appreciated being requested to bring something for the table. They all seemed very willing to help, some even helped with the dishes (we do not have a mechanical dishwasher).

The end result is I now have a better idea on what everyone would like: cowl, toque, finger-less gloves, mitts with gloves inside (very warm - and I have an easy pattern), socks and/or afghan.

For most of December The Crafty Lady (aka Lori) has been receiving long awaited shipments of yarn - both re-stocking favorites and brand-new lines!! So this has been part of her gift to all who shop here.

As we receive new yarns, something has to go into the sale section - which The Crafty Lady has JUST re-stocked. There are several interesting, wonderful and exciting yarns now on sale for 25% off.  This is the time to come in to replenishing your carefully curated collection (aka stash) and plan for new projects. Come in and save me from myself, Please . . .

This leads to this week's 75% Off Special which may or may not reduce your stress . . . this very flexible, 100% acrylic yarn could be used for any number projects.

ICE Yarns

Reg. $7.00
75% OFF

 Lori, Margaret and I wish you and yours Health, Joy and Peace in 2018

Posted by Anne, happy TCL employee

Monday, December 18, 2017

Let's Talk About Weight

"How old are you?" is One of Those Questions, it's said, that one must never ask a lady.

Another is "How much do you weigh?"

But here at The Crafty Lady, weight is a subject that comes up all the time.  Never fear!  It's not your weight we're curious about.  It's the weight of the yarn you want to use for your project.


In this case, it's not even whether a ball or skein of yarn weighs 25, 50 or 100 grams.


In this case, the "weight" about which we're inquiring really refers to the thickness or thinness of the yarn.

Photo: "Katrinkles"
Hedgehog WPI tool
Once upon a time, yarn weight (thickness) used to be simpler.  It was based on how many Wraps Per Inch (WPI) a spinner got when she measured the yarn she'd spun, wrapped around a measuring stick.  Spinners still use this term, which is fine for hand-spun yarn, but not so translatable to commercially spun yarn -- especially synthetics.

Out of the spinning tradition in the UK and in Europe (especially Germany and Austria), arose terms for yarn thickness for every yarn from lace-weight to bulky.  Very fine yarn -- "cobweb" or "gossamer" or "singles" is 1-ply -- a single strand of spun yarn that runs at 40 WPI.  It's so fine that 100 grams can contain 800 metres or more!

Slightly heavier lace-weight yarn is two-ply -- two strands of spun yarn plied together.   Three-ply yarn -- also referred to as "light fingering", sock or baby yarn, has (you guessed it!) three strands of spun yarn plied together, but four-ply -- or simply "fingering" is also suitable for socks, baby garments, gloves, shawls, etc.

Photo: Sweet Pea & Friends
Farm Store
In recent years, the U.S.-based Craft Yarn Council developed a numbering system for yarn weights (thickness) that has (now) eight broad categories, from "0" (1-ply, lace-weight) to "7" -- a yarn so thick it has no "WPI" and is often also referred to as "roving".  This may or may not be accurate, as roving is actually yarn that's been bundled after carding, but hasn't been spun at all.

So.  Today, yarn weights are available in everything "from the sublime to the ridiculous" (as my late mother would've said)!  If you want instant gratification, knit something simple in a bulky yarn.  If you're a process knitter who revels in complexity, knit an ornate Estonian lace shawl.

But...what if you're a "fair to middlin'" person (another Mom-ism!)?  Well...there's a medium-weight yarn just for you.  It's #4 on the American identification system, but is also referred to as "worsted" or "afghan" yarn.  Traditionally it's a ten- or twelve-ply, measured at 9 to 12 WPI.

"Worsted" has its origin in spinning, where it remains a term for yarn spun in a particular way.  Knitters know it as a mid-weight yarn that is generally knit at 16-to-20 stitches in 4" (10 cm) on a 4.5 to 5.5 mm needle (US 7 to 9).  While it's terrific for afghans, it's also great for cardigans, pullovers and toques (that's Canadian for "beanie").  It'll do as well for scarves and mittens, and heavy socks (ideally worn with work boots or without shoes around the house) or slippers.

It makes for a classic sweater featuring wonderful stitch definition (ahhhhh....cables...).  If it's in super-wash wool, that's even better...

And that's our Super Special feature this week: beautiful, British pure (super-wash) wool...

Rowan Pure Wool Worsted
100 grams
100% Super-wash Wool
200 metres (219 yards)
Regular Price: $11.00
Sale Price: $2.75

*Written by Margaret, happy TCL employee who likes her wool -- and her weight -- "fair to middlin'"!  😉

Monday, December 11, 2017

Super Moon of 2017

Did you take a moment on Sunday evening (Dec. 3) to look at the only Supermoon of 2017? A supermoon happens when a "full moon" coincides with the moon's closest approach to earth; and is also called perigee. It looks around 12-14% larger than usual full moons.

If you missed the beauty last week, I would like to suggest you take a moment January 31, 2018 to appreciate the first Supermoon and Blue Moon of 2018 ! 😉  A Blue Moon is the 2nd full moon in the same calendar month.

From an astrological viewpoint, 2018 is going to start off with several events: January 1- Mercury will be at its highest point above the horizon - it will be most easily seen just before sunrise. This will be one bonus of having to work the early shift that day.

January 2 - will be the first full moon of 2018. This moon was known by early North American native peoples as the Full Wolf Moon, as it is the time of the year when the wolf packs traditionally find hunting harder and so come closer to human populations.

Then on January 3rd (early morning on the 4th) you will be able to enjoy the Quadrantids Meteor Shower, with up to 40 meteors an hour . . . due to the full moon from the night before, find a darker corner after midnight.

As we are in the Christian season of Advent (waiting for the birth of Christ) and just about to start Hanukkah (which is from Dec. 12-20 this year), many of us are very busy (and stressing) trying to get every thing done in time. Some of us are now old enough to realize we are no longer "Super Mom" capable of anything and everything while remaining calm, cool, organized and even tempered.

Despite what is going on in the world today, and of any faith or belief system, we can stop and appreciate the gifts of the people and the world around us - if we go looking.  This year, I am going to try to live Jim Henson's words of wisdom:

"Love everyone, forgive everyone, including yourself. Forgive your anger. Forgive your guilt.  Your anger. Your shame. Your sadness. Embrace and open up your love, your love, your truth, and most especially your heart."

Celebrating colour and bright this week's 75% Off Special is "Inspired by Fashion" and very practical for any number of projects AND featuring bright colours !!

Dusters made with Filara

By Schachenmayr
65% viscose, 35% polymid
50 gm / 44 m

Reg. $10
75% Off Special 

Posted by Anne, happy crafter, who is trying to remember to love everyone !

Monday, December 4, 2017

Turkish Delight

In most of Canada, December through February (sometimes earlier, sometimes later) means snow and ice.  Snow-skiing and ice-skating.  Hockey and hot chocolate.

In Turkey?  Not so much!  

According to Wikipedia, Turkey's weather is strongly influenced by its proximity to several large bodies of water, including the Black Sea, the Sea of Marmara, the Aegean Sea and the Mediterranean.  This means that while there may be some snowfall in elevated areas, it doesn't add up to much and it doesn't last long.  Mostly the climate is either warm and wet or cooler and damp, depending on the time of year.

But Turkey does have ice.  Ice Yarns that is.  Head-quartered in Istanbul, the company makes a variety of yarns under the Ice brand name...and many of them are wool or wool blends.

And it's one of those woolly yarns that we're bringing to your attention this week as our Super Sale feature.

Hand-dyed Wool Cord is a thick, sturdy yarn, 100% wool -- perfect for a felted project, or for a pair of  hard-wearing slippers.  It's not only hand-dyed, but dyed using only plant dyes -- no chemicals -- which means interesting colour combinations and perhaps the odd 'white' spot under the ties used to hold each skein together.

At this price, you could make a pair of Holiday Slipper Socks for each member of the family -- perfect for keeping your toes toasty while you open gifts (still in your PJs of course!) or relax by the fire with a cuppa cocoa and a new book...

So do drop in this week to checkout our selection of this Turkish delight...

Hand-dyed Wool Cord
100 grams
100% Wool
100 metres (109 yards)
Regular Price: $16.00

Sale Price: $4.00

Friday, December 1, 2017

Good afternoon!
Head Honcho here - Anne says I should say
THE Crafty Lady here. ;)

Starting today - because we've been blocked from our Blogger due to the brown out of Wednesday - December hours are now in effect!

From today until December 23rd we will be open 9 - 9 weekdays and regular 9-6 Saturdays and closed Sundays.

We will also be closed Christmas Day and Boxing Day.

After that, hours return to normal with the exception of New Year's Day cos I don't care how much you love yarn, I am never overrun by people insisting they need yarn after a heavy evening of celebrating the new year. :)

Looking forward to seeing your bright shiny faces during our extended hours!

written by Lori
the elusive writing member of the team (because she knows how to delegate)