Monday, February 26, 2018

It's a Colourful World

Photo credit: Reader's Digest
Whether you work (or play!) with paint or crayons or beads, fabric, or fibre or (embroidery) floss -- or you don't -- just walk into a shop where these sorts of things are on display.

Or just walk into an art gallery, a florist's shop, a farmer's market or even the produce section of your local grocery store.

You will be surrounded by colour.  Every where you turn you'll see colours, light and dark and in between.

If it happens to be a yarn-and-craft shop, the colours will pull you in to touch the textures.  The floss will call you to stitch; the yarn, to knit or crochet something -- be it for yourself, for someone else, or simply for the pleasure of it.

Nowadays, yarn is more colourful than ever before, and there's so much
selection!  You can combine solid colours to create vivid stripes or colourful intarsia (pictures) or stranded patterns.

Photo Credit:
 Sweet Paprika Yarns
You can employ tonal or gradient-dyed yarn for a gentle journey from dark to light.  You can find yarns that are dyed so they form stripes or Fair Isle effect patterns, and you can find yarns that are 'variegated' -- ones that produce random colour patterns, streaks and pools of colour.

And its a variegated selection that is the star for our Super Special Sale this week!

Berroco Vintage Colors

100 grams = 198 metres (217 yards)
50% Acrylic
40% Wool
10% Nylon

Regular Price: $11.50

Sale Price: $2.87!

So add a little (more) colour to your life: make a hat, a pair of mittens, a cute cardigan for your favourite tot...and most of all, have fun! 

After all, it's a colourful world!

Written by Margaret, happy TCL employee who revels in the colours around her every day.

Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Luxury -- and Lace!

Remember that luxurious Baby Alpaca Aran yarn we posted about yesterday for our Super Special?

But never fear!  We've moved from LACE.
Our Second Super Special this week features not one, not two, but THREE lacy yarns, perfect for decorative trims, scarves or arm-knitting:

Berroco Glee

Ice Yarns Tango
Ice Yarns Cha-cha-cha
Berroco Lacey
Regular Prices: $22 - $24.00
Sale Pries: $5.50 - $6.00

Monday, February 19, 2018

Time to Celebrate??

Note: The Crafty Lady is 
Closed for Family Monday, Feb. 19, 2018 

Did you celebrate Family Day in Lacombe? With family? How will you be  celebrating?

Last week I learned Chinese New Year is celebrated for two full weeks! It is a time of family, friends, food and celebration!

Canadians tend to be just a little less flamboyant in our celebrations. Would it be possible to encourage Canadians to be more outgoing and showy in public? In the depths of winter - our outdoor activities are often more sedate. Lots of fun, and lots of food - despite (or in spite of)  the weather.

Family is the focus of most celebrations and we all have memories of that incredible food we ate at one or more celebrations.

For some of us in the Christian traditions - some of us are marking Lent. We were raised to "give up" or "fast from" something during Lent, chocolate, sugar and fat were some of the items. For a couple of years, we were encouraged to donate a dime (10 cents) daily for a cause. If memory serves correctly, many of these causes now would be considered racially inappropriate. We all know fasting from anything specific is not a long-term positive lifestyle.

Last year someone shared what I thought was a much more constructive list of things to "give up" for Lent. I would like to pass the list along as "food for thought".

  • Fast from hurting words and say kind words
  • Fast from sadness and be filled with gratitude
  • Fast from anger and be filled with patience
  • Fast from worries and have trust in God (or any form of higher power you believe in)
  • Fast from complaints and contemplate simplicity
  • Fast from pressures and be prayerful
  • Fast from bitterness and fill your hearts with jou
  • Fast from selfishness and be compassionate to others
  • Fast from grudges and be reconciled
  • Fast from words and be silent so you can listen

Not an easy task list. I know I will not be able to live up to these suggestions, but we all need goals and even more we need hope. Human nature is such that we need to be respected and complimented, a touch of luxury does not hurt - especially when it is cold outside.

This week's 75% off sale yarn may be just the touch of luxury you are hoping for. From Diamond's Luxury Collection, The Crafty Lady is featuring one of my personal favourites . . .

Baby Alpaca Aran

Spun in Peru 
100% Baby Alpaca
50 gm/93 m 

Reg. Price $13.00
Sale $3.25

Come in and feel a touch of luxury - so you too can work with a beautiful yarn

Posted by Anne, who loves to work with luxury yarns

Monday, February 12, 2018

Got Your Mojo Workin'?

noun  mo·jo  \ ˈmō-(ˌ)jō \
Definition: a magic spell, hex or charm; broadly, magical power
-- Merriam-Webster Dictionary, online version

: a quality that attracts people to you and makes you successful and full of energy:

He's definitely lost his mojo.

He needs to get his mojo working if he's going to win the election.
-- Cambridge Dictionary, online version

Here in Central Alberta, February is living up to its reputation to "puff and blow, fill the ditches full of snow".  Even  as our daylight starts a bit earlier and ends a bit later each day, it might seem as though each time we venture out of the house we're in a battle with Mother Nature to stay upright on our feet and safe on the roads.

Many (dare I say 'most'?) days I, for one, would just like to crawl back into bed and stay there.

You might just say I've "lost my mojo" -- at least as far as enjoying the outdoors is concerned!  😉 at The Crafty Lady, our 'mojo' doesn't come from the Great Outdoors.  While others are fighting drifts and icy roads, we're working our magic with yarn, knitting needles and crochet hooks.  

We like to think of these as our "super powers".

We're energized by the 29 bales of yarn that landed in on us last week. (Yes, you read that correctly: 29. bales. of. yarn!)

These are just a few of 'em!

To showcase all of those new arrivals in The Shop, we've got to make some room.

This week, we've got two ways we're going to do that.

That's right: TWO ways.

1. It's The Crafty Lady's 24th Anniversary on Wednesday, February 14.  
We'll be celebrating with a  

One-day Anniversary Sale!

Sorry, though.  No sneak peeks...But...
let's just say it includes a lot of our well-loved brands at great prices.

Just come by Wednesday between 9 a.m. and 6 p.m. and enjoy the fun!

Does this mean we won't have our Super Weekly Special this week?  
You've got to be kidding!  We can't let a week go by without that! 

2. Our Super Special this week is guaranteed to restore any mojo that's been blown about by the wintry winds or frozen in a snow bank!  

Berroco Mojo

100 grams per skein = 90 metres (98 yards)
56% Wool
35% Manufactured Fibers - Acrylic
5% Manufactured Fibers - Nylon / Polyamide
4% Goat - Mohair

Regular Price: $20.00
Sale Price: $5.00!

This is a thick-and-thin bulky yarn (7 - 8 stitches = 4" on a 10 mm. needle or hook) that's perfect for a quick project like those hats and mittens and cowls you need right now to keep you cozy as you clear the back-yard ice rink or just try to start your car in a cold, windy parking lot!

"Michelle" Cowl
Free pattern - Berroco Design Team

"Grace" Mittens
Free Pattern - Berroco Design Team

"Mushroom Cap"
Available through Ravelry or IN STORE 
Designer: Lori Nowochin - The Crafty Lady!

And just in case you  need to crank your mojo just a bit till Spring's a blast from the past to help you out...

Muddy Waters - "Got My Mojo Workin'"

Written by Margaret, who gets her mojo from knitting, when she's not boppin' to the beat of Muddy Waters.

Monday, February 5, 2018

Angel Hair and Mare's Tails

Rows and flows of angel hair
And ice cream castles in the air
And feather canyons everywhere --
I've looked at clouds that way...

-- Joni Mitchell, Both Sides Now, 1969

As Joni so poetically describes, there are many types and shapes and textures of clouds.  Looking out my window as I write, the February sky appears to be a sheet of solid white, punctured by a yellow-white ball of flame as the sun tries to make it's presence known.

Such a sky might just be cirrostratus fibratus, a type of cirrostratus cloud that is formed by strong, continuous winds high up there, which cover large portions of the sky.  Given that the wind chill today is - 32 Celsius...well, I guess that's to be expected!

"Mare's Tails" over Mirror, AB
February 2013

The cirrostratus family of clouds, though, is just one of the types of cirrus cloud, described by Windows to the Universe as "...the most common of the high cloud group" -- clouds that are composed of ice crystals due to the cold air in the upper sky.  

Even at this time of year, the air up there is colder than it is down here on the ground -- no matter how it feels to our faces, hands and feet as we shovel fresh snow or careen down a ski hill or glide around an icy pond.

When they're not in thick layers like cirrostratus fibratus, cirrus clouds are fine and wispy, like angel hair...or mare's tails.  

While they may be composed of ice crystals, human attempts to emulated their appearance with fibre are much warmer to the touch.

One such example is the soft, wispy beauty we have on offer for our Super Special this week...

Berroco Cirrus

42% Mohair (from goats)
40% Nylon / Polyamide
18% Merino
25 grams = 104 metres (114 yards)

Regular Price: $10.00

Sale Price: $2.50

Because of the "halo" that the mohair provides, this yarn can knit up quickly on 6 mm (US 10) needles to make a soft, cozy cowl or hat to keep you warm under the February cloud-cover.   

A little more time with this yarn of a winter's afternoon or two, and you could create your own lovely lace shawlette.  

Designed by Nora Gaughan
for Berroco
Offered as a free pattern on the Berroco website.

So...don't let those cirrostratus fibratus clouds, that weak winter sun and those bitter winds get you down.  We have "cozy" waiting for you...

Written by Margaret, who's been captivated by the wide Alberta skies, angel hair and mare's tails for over forty years.