Monday, February 24, 2020

New Yarns!

Since you are no longer able to come into the store to oo and ah over the new yarns, I thought I would showcase them for you here this week.

First up is our offering from Gathering Yarn. If you're wondering why you've never heard of this company, it is because they are relatively new to the yarn wholesale market and, lucky me, I know the couple who founded the company 😊. They sell both imported Italian yarn and Canadian (B.C.) yarn and it is all lovely to handle.

They have some yarns that have their own permanent label, such as Haynes Creek, and then they have the 'The Harvest Is Here' series which is further divided into three levels.

The first level is just 'The Harvest Is Here' and it includes yarns that may only start with one colourway but there is a good chance that more colourways are coming later on down the line.

The second level is 'Stock Lot/Mill Ends' and they either come in the natural colour ready to be dyed or they are pre-dyed by an amazing anonymous dyer who does lovely work. As the name suggests, they are mill ends and therefore will not be duplicated.

The third level is 'One Shot Series' and these are the yarns you want to gobble up fast! They are all milled in Italy and dyed either there or in B.C. by the aforementioned colour artist.

Under 'The Harvest Is Here' we have Speckles, Mira, Alicante, SoftValencia, and Valencia Chunky

Under 'Stock Lot/Mill Ends' we have Luxury Hand Dyed Sock Variety, The Basics Sock, Merino Chunky, and Elena

Under 'One Shot Series' we have Cannellino, Merino Blend, Savoiardo, Buzz Big, and Rosmarino.

I can't do all the work for you, so make sure to click on the links to view all the colours and specs on each of the yarns. FYI - if you order the mill ends, be sure to specify in the notes, which colourway you want as they are not separated by colour.

Our second offering is from a more familiar name, Estelle Yarns. If you remember the Comfort Wolle Gala 200 (one ball makes a shawl or poncho), Gala 50 is a smaller put up that is great for a matching hat or cowl. Estelle Magic Shawl will do all the work for you to create the shawl pattern shown with each colour. and, last but not least, Superba Susu is a fun and interesting sock yarn.

Because the current website is still not the most user-friendly platform, I hope you appreciate that I gave you a preview of how it works via the links above. If you want to know prices or if you choose to order from those links, please sign in/up. I finally figured out why some orders are pickup only. Not all items have their weight and dimensions filled in. The above items do, so they are ready to ship, not just pickup.

Enjoy the browse and have a great week!

written by Lori, happy TCL owner, who is slowly getting her warehouse in order with a LOT of help from Muriel.

Monday, February 17, 2020

Ferrets and Bulldogs

A big thank you to all those that have trusted in my ferreting skills. I have had a number of online orders since shutting down the brick and mortar store and I have managed to fulfill each and every one without having a single product on a shelf yet! And I applaud your bulldog tenacity because I know how difficult the online store is and I am working diligently to get the new improved version up and running.

A quick note for ordering online - I'm not sure why, because I have gone over my settings with a fine toothed comb, but the store seems to be set for pickup only, therefore you will have trouble when trying to get the page to accept your address. I'm working on it and those of you who have persevered either already have, or soon will have, your product in your hot little hands.

If you are local or were unaware of the changes and came unsuccessfully to go shopping, you will notice that the downtown location is looking pretty empty.  We only have a few more loads to take out and some signage to remove, then it will be as official as it gets. I have had some people ask if that makes me sad and I have to say no. Will I miss the randomness by which customers come to shop in a B&M store? Yes, but it will be replaced by the regular rhythm of the familiar faces that show up whenever I pop up in their town or city, so all is good.

Now back to work figuring out where everything is going to go so I don't have to pretend to be a ferret for much longer. ;)
Enjoy your week,

Monday, February 10, 2020

Renovations and Revitalization

So for those of you who thought that closing the brick and mortar location meant lazy days and fun times, let me give you a glimpse of what transitioning from B&M to online / pop up looks like.
This photo was taken Monday morning when Mom and I got to work. All last week was spent doing inventory and packing everything up into boxes or bags. Thanks Margaret and Anne for all your hard work. Monday to Friday last week Mom helped with the inventory as well as helped me dismantle as much as we could and transport products and display items to their respective homes. By the end of today (Monday) all the shelving and pegboard was off the walls. Thanks Terry for doing all the hard work there.

I still have plenty of work to do on the online store and rv renovation as well but I decided I need to take some ME time too. For those of you who have known me a long time, you know that I love to sing. I haven’t been doing much of that for the past few years because the choir I was in had relaxed the ‘no scents’ rule. Sadly, ya can’t sing if ya can’t breathe so I retired for a while. 

Then, out of the blue, I received an invitation to join the Madrigal Singers and U of A Concert Choir as an alumnus to celebrate Len Ratzlaff’s 40th anniversary with the university’s music department. Practices started the Monday following the closure of the B&M. I figured if I’m starting a new chapter in my life, I might as well make it a good one. You have no idea how good it feels to get back into a routine that you left behind 20+ years ago. Well, maybe you do. I just know I feel revitalized and all my old good (singing) habits are returning and I can still sightread music well enough to fool people into thinking I have perfect pitch. 😁

If you are interested in knowing more about the concert at the end of March, please leave a comment on the blog or the FB page and I’ll send you more information. In the meantime have a listen to this preview (not the choir I’m singing with). U of A Haydn project

Now I’m off to bed cos those kitchen cupboards aren’t going to remove themselves from the walls in the morning.

Written by Lori, TCL owner who sometimes feels like a slave to her passions :)

Monday, February 3, 2020

... and a New Life Has Begun

I know, I know, its a CATS reference that was used two weeks ago and the movie is getting unceremoniously panned, but don't let that deter you from reading this blog. You might let the fact that it is now being written by The Crafty Lady herself make you lose interest but I will do my best to keep you informed and entertained.😉

As of February 1, 2020 The Crafty Lady is no longer a brick and mortar store.

Before you start rending your garments, gnashing your teeth, and covering yourself in ashes, please note that the online store ( still exists and is in the middle of getting a much needed, user-friendly upgrade.

But we need to pet the yarn!

Be patient. The pop up store should be on the road in time for Farmer's Market season and it will be travelling throughout Central Alberta. Judging by the inventory I currently have, and plan on keeping as regular stock, you will probably be seeing different stock every week over an 8 week period. The eighth week will probably be a sale trip - so, anything that was 25% off in the brick and mortar, or that has been discontinued since the beginning of 2020 - you get the picture.

If you clicked the link above, you will have seen a search bar and not much else (unless you are reading this lo-ong after it was published and the new website is up and running). I promise you that the new, improved website will be much easier to navigate and it will have an option to PICK UP. Why am I telling you this now? If you know that I will be coming to your town and you missed the opportunity to purchase the yarn while it was there - you petted it, you hummed and hawed - and you can't wait for the next time it comes around, you can choose PICK UP when you complete your online order and it will be in the mobile store just waiting for you to pick it up, prepaid! How's that for service?

Now I have to get back to inventorying and boxing up the product, stripping the walls of shelving and pegboard, arranging the warehouse, reconfiguring the kitchen in my RV, updating the website ... I am so thankful that Margaret, Anne and Mom are more than happy to be helping with the final steps of putting the brick and mortar to bed. I could never do this on my own. Fact is, I could never have done any of this without my customers, so THANK YOU! to each and every one of you, and see you on the road in the future.

Oh! and make sure to like The Crafty Lady on Facebook! It will most likely be updated on a more regular basis than this blog will. You saw my to do list.

written by Lori, TCL owner who is eager to get started on the new life I've begun!