TFA Club and Nuit Blanche

 I’ve been waiting to share some awesome news:
tanis yarn Tanis Fiber Arts is starting up their first TFA’s Year in Colour yarn club!! Every other month, participants will be sent a custom-dyed skein of finger weight yarn (that’s 420 yards) and an exclusive pattern designed for the single skein. the pattern designers are: Tanis Gray, Glenna C , Julie Crawford, Laura Chau, Patti Waters and Kristen Kapur.

Did you see that, just up there? My name tucked in with all those awesome superstar designers? I mean…. whoa. Somebody call Keanue Reeves, only one of his whoas will convey my awestruck-ness.

I love the yarns Tanis makes. The colours are amazing, and the yarn is brilliant- resists pilling, doesn’t split, wears like a dream. I’ve got a few things knit with Tanis Fiber Arts Yarn, and I love them all (now that I think of it, I have an FO from August that I’ve yet to photograph that is also made from TFA yarn…). The club is really affordable- you’ll get 6 skeins of yarn, 6 exclusive patterns, and the shipping is included in the cost. Once you do the math, it’s a steal. *EDIT: And it’s international- doesn’t matter what country you live in!

So yes… I’m starting to design some of my own patterns. I’ve got lots of ideas, and I’m excited to enter this new phase of my knitting. I’m already working on a free pattern that will come out in a few weeks- stay tuned!!

On Saturday night, Toronto was awash in contemporary art for the 5th anniversary of Nuit Blanche. There is something utterly magical about the city being transformed into amazing, Alice-in-Wonderland-esque pockets of art.

Nuit Blanche, Toronto 2010

The Knit Cafe always has a magical window display for Nuit Blanche. This year did not disappoint:

It was an amazing night. I love it when cities encourage the arts and put on free events!!

Modification Monday: Horace

Original Pattern: Bridgewater

Knitter Extraordinaire: Ulrika (Rav Id)

Mods: Increased the size of the garter stitch  square, and did fewer repeats of the horseshoe lace. Also changed the edging of the shawl to a sawtooth edging. Exact details of the modifications can be found on her project page, here.

What Makes This Awesome: This was a project rescued from near disaster- Ulrika’s cat, Horace, got at the shawl while it was in progress and ripped several holes into the body of the shawl. Rather than just scrapping the whole project, she used the opportunity to play around with the project and use the pattern as more of a recipe. She adjusted the size of the shawl for the yardage she had, and changed the edging to something different, just to experiment. And of course, she mended the holes that Horace had made. The result- a completely different, but utterly lovely shawl. Talk about turning lemons into lemonade!

New Yarn- The UK Wrap Up

Sorry it took me so long to get to this- I had the flu last week, and I was definitely down for the count! But all better now.

While in England, I only visited two yarn shops, and both were wonderful. In Bristol, I went to Wooly Thinking:

Which was a lovely little shop in the Clifton Arcade of Bristol. It’s a fabulous area of the city for a wander, and the shop had a great selection of yarn, including lots of UK yarn:
And also stocked a great selection of handcrafted buttons:
I’m definitely planning on visiting this shop again the next time I’m in Bristol. 
And while In York, we visited Ramshambles:


I appreciate the patience of all the in-law relatives that had to stop and wait for me for about half an hour while I perused the shop, trying to decide what to buy! They had some amazing hand dyed local yarns.


So, in the end, this is what I bought in England:
yarn 1 edit
yarn 2 edit

I love them all. They are all buttery soft, and I was pleased to snag the hand dyed skeins of fingering (from Blue Faced Leicester sheep, apparently!) from Ramshambles- they are really amazing. I was also impressed by the grey UK Alpaca- it’s sooo soft.  I have all this wonderful new yarn, and there are so many projects I want to knit- if only my wrists could withstand all the knitting I want to do every day!!

Modification Monday: Extra Long & Cozy Owls Cardi

Original Pattern: Owls

Knitter Extraordinaire: Sachiko (Rav Id, Blog)

Mods: Turned the wonderful and popular pullover into an oversized cardigan with a collar, and added pockets.

What Makes This Awesome:  I love everything about this cardigan- the slouchy and oversized fit looks so comfy, the collar looks cozy, and the pockets are amazing – I love the button detail.  And even better, all of her mods look completely integrated into the rest of the pattern- the garter stitch button band, the k2 p2 ribbing of the collar and pocket tops. It’s perfect, and looks amazing! Project page with all the details can be found here.

Modification Monday: Coppertop

Original Pattern: Safire

Knitter Extraordinaire: Alicia (Rav Id)

Mods: Stopped front increases early to shorten the waist, adjusted the collar with additonal short rows to flatter her shoulders and bring in the neckline, and adjusted the button band. 

What Makes This Awesome: We all have different body types, and not every garment is going to suit your figure. But that’s what’s really awesome about knitting- you’re in control. Alicia took a gorgeous pattern that wasn’t quite right for her body type originally, but she tweaked it and made modifications to turn it into the perfect fit.  Shortening the waist kept the cropped cardi appeal, and narrowing the neckline meant a cardigan that would stay on her shoulders. And just look at the result- utterly gorgeous. And Alicia looks perfect in it. Details on exactly how she did her modifications can be found on her project page here.