It’s Beginning To Look Alot Like Christmas…

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Not really, but Christmas comes early for knitters, given that it’s hard to start knitting your Christmas gifts on December 24th. Not that many knitters haven’t tried.  To help you get an early start, A Great Yarn has knitted up a couple of terrific garments for children of every age that are certain to produce squeals of joy when they are discovered under the Christmas tree.

To help you get a quick start, A Great Yarn will hold a class in October for a great Christmas gift: the Mermaid Lapaghan. And if you’re stuck for a last-minute gift, in December we’re holding classes for two quick knit-ups: the Stranded Cowl and the Tree Hugger Mittens.

Here are the details.

The Mermaid Lapaghan (Saturday, October 14st)

Mermaid Lapaghan

Mermaid Lapaghan

Last year more than a hundred youngsters awoke on Christmas morning to find a hand-knitted Mermaid Lapaghan under the Christmas tree, and this year there doesn’t appear to be any let-up. Everyone keeps coming up with new color combinations, in within the past couple of weeks we’ve see a gold fist (using gold, yellow and orange Encore Worsted), and a sparkly pink mermaid (using a combination of pink Encore Colorspun and pink Encore Starz.)

If you haven’t made Angie Hartley’s mermaid lapaghan yet, give it a try. It’s easy, and guaranteed to be an instant hit. And a keepsake that will be treasured for years to come.

The Mermaid Lapaghan class will be taught by Mary Weishaar on Saturday, October 14th, from 1-4 PM. The cost for the class is $30, and does not include yarn, needles or the pattern. Class size will be limited to 10 students, and payment in advance is required to hold your spot. Some minor, advance knitting would be helpful to maximize your class time, and just give us a call and we’ll tell you how to get started.

The Stranded Cowl (Saturday, November 4th)

Stranded Cowl

Stranded Cowl

The quick-knits start in November, with Julie Weisenberg’s Stranded Cowl. It’s a very simple two-skein project (one skein of a soft, bulky-weight yarn, and one skein of a soft worsted-weight yarn), and can easily be “mass-produced” if you have a lot of people on your Christmas list looking for something unique, stylish and hand-made from their favorite knitter.

The Stranded Cowl class will be taught by Mary Weishaar on Saturday, November 4th, from 1-4 PM. The cost for the class is $30, and does not include yarn, needles or the pattern. Class size will be limited to 10 students, and payment in advance is required to hold your spot.

The Tree Hugger Mittens (Saturday, November 11th)

Slide1The quick-knits conclude with The Tree Hugger Mittens by A Great Yarn’s great friend, Amy Small from Boston. Talk about a fast knit! Our whirling dervish knitter Antonia DaSilva knitted up Amy’s mittens (as well as Amy’s “Ribby Turban Headband”) in just a couple of days using a single skein of Knit Collage’s cotton candy-like “Sister” yarn. And the color selection is fantastic. If you’re down to the wire on Christmas knitting, this is definitely the project for you.

The Tree Hugger Mitten class will be taught by Jean Williams on Saturday, Saturday, November 11th, from 1-4 PM. The cost for the class is $30, and does not include yarn, needles or the pattern. Class size will be limited to 10 students, and payment in advance is required to hold your spot.

Chatham Yarn – Month-by-Month

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In March, 2015, A Great Yarn introduced our original Chatham Yarn. Designed in collaboration with hand dyer extraordinaire Mishellee Poulin, it embodied Chatham’s one-of-a-kind summer colors.

In December, 2015, we created Chatham Yarn – The Finest Hours, which represented our attempt to capture the roiling waters off Chatham’s coast in winter, made famous by the Coast Guard’s 1952 rescue of the crew of the Pendleton.

In August, 2016, we added Chatham Yarn – Month-by-Month to the mix. As anyone who has ever visited Chatham knows, our town is a treasure trove of iconic images, and every month we turn one of them into fabulous yarn.

For the past year, A Great Yarn has created a new Chatham Yarn every month, based on our favorite Chatham images, and recommendations from our customers.

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We have provided the monthly offerings to the members of our Chatham Yarn Month-by-Month Club at a discount, together with appropriate knitting and crochet patterns, a 5”x7” photograph of the Chatham image that was the inspiration for dyeing the yarn, and a small gift to show our appreciation. We have also included free shipping. To date, we have had over 50 knitters join the Club.

Beginning in August, 2017, we will offer our third six-month installment of Chatham Yarn Month-by-Month offerings, and we will again attempt to transform Chatham’s iconic images into yarn. As before we will look to include a bit of nature (our famous beach roses or perhaps a tribute to Oyster Pond), a bit of history (The Marconi Museum or perhaps The Douglas Kiker bench in front or St. Christopher’s), and some of our favorite business establishments (Agway or perhaps Mark August).

The cost for each monthly offering (plus patterns, picture and all the trimmings) is $45 per month. If you would like to receive all six offerings, we will provide a 15% discount, and also include free shipping.  Give us a call in the shop at 508-348-5605, or send us an email at info@agreatyarn.com, if you would like to participate. And also let us know which of your favorite Chatham images you would like us transform into yarn for August’s Month-by-Month offering.

Knitter “HELP DESK”

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Slide1Even the best knitters need a helpful suggestion now and then.  And all knitters have experienced the pattern with poorly written directions, or the “sweater from hell.”  The staff at A Great Yarn can help every knitter – the beginner, the intermediate and the expert – with their knitting problems, big or small.  And if we can’t help, we’ll find someone who can.

 

 

Slide1The best way to deal with your knitting problems is to visit A Great Yarn during our “HELP DESK” hours, which are Tuesday and Friday from 1:00 to 5:00 pm, and Saturday from 10:00 am until noon.

 

 

 

 

We have three expertSlide1 knitters on our staff – Jean Williams, Kathleen Read and Cecilia Salyards – who are more than happy to help with any problems you are having with your knitting.  And just remember, the first 15 minutes is always on us.

 

 

 

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Even if you don’t want specific help, you’re still more than welcome to come in during HELP DESK hours (or any other time for that matter) and just knit with your fellow fabric artists.  Bring whatever yarn and needles you like with you and just enjoy the camaraderie.  And pick up some good ideas while you’re at it.

Become a Better Knitter: Saturday Morning Knit-arounds

Old time knit-around photo

What’s a “knit-around?”

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A “knit-around” is the knitting version of an old basketball term, called the “shoot-around.”  NBA Hall-of-Famer Bill Sharman invented the shoot-around as a way of burning off nervous energy on game days. The concept involved players practicing their shooting in an unstructured manner, with five or six players shooting at one basket, rebounding each other’s shots, providing friendly advice and joking around.

Do I really need to participate in a knit-around?

It depends. If you’re a competitive knitter, and you’re prone to experiencing anxiety and begin dropping stitches as soon as you pick up your needles before a match, then participating in a knit-around is definitely for you.

Even if you’re not a competitive knitter, a knit-around probably is a good idea, because it’s a great way to enjoy the company of your fellow knitters in an informal setting, while learning from their mistakes and successes, and sharing your own experiences.

How can I join a knit-around?

It’s a piece of cake.  Simply drop by A Great Yarn any Saturday morning between 10 am and noon. Bring your knitting, your questions and your sense of humor. You can also bring along some competitive gear if you like — tennis shoes, gym clothes, headbands – but it’s not necessary.

A Great Yarn will provide coffee and tea, and if you are so inclined you can kick in a couple of quarters to replenish the supplies. However, it’s not a requirement for participation.

Are there knit-around rules?

The goal of the knit-arounds is to help everyone become better a better knitter. So when you come, make sure to…

  • Keep it positive
  • Keep it supportive
  • Keep it focused on knitting

It’s all about sharing and learning and getting better together!

Adams Family (TV)

 

Joan Blondell and Mary Astor

 

Dione Quintuplets knitting