We’ve had many customers in the shop over the past couple of weeks asking what items we would recommend for the knitters and crocheters on their Christmas shopping list. So here are our suggestions, based on how much you would like to spend.
There’s no knitter on the planet who can’t use more stitch markers, another darning needle, a row counter or a tape measure. The only challenge is that sometimes knitters may feel strongly about a particular marker or counter. Prices vary from $3.50 to $7.50.
We have yet to meet the knitter who uses circular needles and does not love Fiber to Fabric’s “Needle Keeper.” In contract to the standard point protectors that invariably fall off in your project bag, and can often lead to lost stitches, Needle Keeps provide a foolproof way to secure circular needles, and have the added advantage of preventing dogs from chewing on your needles or spouses from sitting on them. Plus Needle Keepers are only $7.95 each.
Most knitters crave a magnetic pattern holder, which knitting involving any sort of pattern with charts so much easier. But they are often reluctant to spend money on what they presume is an extravagance. The truth is Knitter’s Pride makes a terrific magnetic chart holder, which is only $15.80.
Another great gift in the $10-25 range is the Akerworks Swatch Gauge, offer a slip-resistant 4-inch cross measurement, for nice confident gauge counting. What did Knitter’s Review say about the Akerworks Swatch Gauge? “Will your knitting life be incomplete without a Swatch Gauge? Of course not. People have been knitting well-fitting clothing for hundreds of years. But if it makes the much-dreaded, often-mistrusted gauge swatch process any easier or more accurate—which it really does—this is a home run in my book.” The price? $17.50
$25-$50 Gifts –
Knitter’s have been know to use anything from grocery bags to zip lock bags to store their partially finished projects. There’s nothing wrong with that approach, assuming that the zip lock bag was not previously used to store parmesan cheese. But if the partially finished project is destined for a wedding or the birth of a first grandchild, wouldn’t it be nice to keep your knitting in one of local fiber artist Jo-Ann Carey’s hand-sewn project bags, which are impeccably crafted and made from the most beautiful fabrics. Indeed, the inside of Jo-Ann’s project bags is as gorgeous as the outside. Jo-Ann’s medium-sized project bags are $30 each, and her large size bags are $40 each.
The Block Island Gansey Hat is a classic sailor’s hat, which includes diamonds, ladders, cables and chevron. Knit in the round with one skein of North Light Fibers’ Ocean Avenue yarn that comes in 4 colors. 15% of the proceeds from the sale of the hat kits goes to The Seamen’s Church Institute, which is an outstanding organization helping sailors and mariners around the world. The kit comes in 4 colors: deep blue, red, maroon and white. The kit – which includes yarn, pattern and information about the Seaman’s Church Institute, costs $35. 15% of the proceeds go to The Seamen’s Church Institute.
$50+ Gifts –
Our hand-thrown ceramic yarn bowls provide the opportunity to combine your fiber artistry with the art of Gill Wilson (from Chatham Stoneware) or Jim Atchison (from Lickin’ Flames, in Northern California). Both men are master potters, whose work combines solid craftsmanship with local colors and art forms. Prices range from $45-55.
Our good friends at Koigu recently came out with their newest creation — the herringbone stranded cowl – which they introduced at last year’s VOGUE Knitting in New York City. And it is breathtaking. The cowl is made from a “pencil box” kit containing 10 Koigu mini-skeins, arranged in a “gradient” of hand-painted colors. When we met with the Koigu folks in New York we commissioned them to develop a “Chatham gradient” for us, so we could offer kits for making cowls more in keeping with our distinctive colors. And Just look at what they came up with: a pencil box contain mini-skeins that come as close as you can get to waves breaking off Lighthouse Beach, and sending shimmering fingers of water as far as they can reach up onto the sand. Each kit has sufficient yarn to make two different cowls, with enough yarn left over to make a third smaller version. The cost is $70/kit, which includes the cost of the pattern.
And let’s not forget the crocheters!
A Great Yarn has partnered with TOFT UK, which provides British crochet kits based on the number one best-selling crochet book, “Edward’s Menagerie,” by Kerry Lord. TOFT’s Edward’s Menagerie Collection is unbelievably adorable. These amigurumi animal designs are crocheted in TOFT’s DK yarn and make perfect gifts for children and adults alike. WARNING: they are addictive! Each kit contains 100% British wool yarn, along with everything you need to complete your project — a printed postcard pattern, stuffing for the finished animal, a TOFT branded 3mm crochet hook, a wool needle for sewing up and a short black thread to sew on the eyes. Most of the animals in the collection measure approximately 7″ tall when seated.
We currently have kits to make nearly two dozen different Edward’s Menagerie animals, including Emma the Bunny, Lisa the Black-Nosed Sheep, Chardonnay the Pony and Fiona the Panda. Prices for the kits range from $12.50 to $29.50.
And then there’s always gift certificates…