Monday, April 24, 2017

If You Could Catch a Camouflage...

You have to be very quiet, and very still, and watch very, very, carefully.

The Camouflage is difficult to see because it is...well, it's camouflaged. If you are motionless and focus your eyes just right you might see the heat waves outlining its deer like form.

It's a gentle animal with succulent meat that many animals love to gorge on. Few people know of it because it is generally invisible. An expert at melding into its background it has been just recently discovered and documented although it has been known among women for centuries . It is an herbivore, gentle, but very wily and hard to catch.

If you can catch one it has a lovely, long, soft, coat which can only be seen once it's been shorn or shed. Then the fur takes on its true color and lacking the particular chemicals and temperature of its owner becomes constant in its appearance. Shearing a Camouflage does not affect its life saving ability to hide and once shorn it can be sent on its way.

The Camouflage does not do well in captivity. Efforts to domesticate them have failed and led to premature death and harsh coats unsuitable for fabric and knitting. Further, they dwell in hard to reach forests inhospitable to mortal men. However women have been able to penetrate these forests and come away with armloads of the fur, spinning and knitting the rare treasure into magic robes and mittens.

Alas, although we recently went on an expedition to track down this elusive creature, we failed in our attempt (someone sneezed), and we came away with nothing.

So instead we offer  you this...

75% OFF

Ice Yarns Camouflage
100% Acrylic
100 g/200 m light Worsted Weight (4)

Regular Price: $7.00
Sale Price: $1.75

Posted by Anna Maria Junus (happy employee who will be going on an expedition of her own soon but will probably not find a Camouflage). 

Monday, April 17, 2017

Soft Like a Cloud, Tough as Steel

We carry or have carried yarns made from all kinds of different materials. Wool of course and acrylic, but also cotton, linen, silk, hemp, bamboo, cashmere, angora (both rabbit and goat), alpaca, camel, and llama. We've even had sugar cane and milk.

Don't ask me how you can make yarn from milk.

There's even a category of yarn called "other fibres". I don't know what plant or animal that comes from.

All those things are soft, just what you want from a yarn.

So how surprised am I to realize that we also have a yarn made with stainless steel. And it's not used for scrubbing pots.

In fact, mixed with merino wool its soft and lovely, perfect for an airy shawl or tunic.

Don't ask me how to do they do that either. Apparently steel is strong enough to make towering structures and soft enough to wrap a baby in. Who knew?

75% OFF

Katia Inox Lace
92% Merino Wool, 8% Stainless Steel
25 g/205 m/224 y Lace Weight (0)

Regular Price: $9.00
Sale Price: $2.25

Posted by Anna Maria Junus (happy employee who is sick while she writes this and apparently the cold in her head has affected the functioning of her mind). 

Monday, April 10, 2017


Facts about Ottawa

1. It's the capital city of Canada. There was a huge fight about this. Toronto wanted to be named the capital. So did Vancouver and Calgary. But Ottawa was smart and waved knitting needles around threatening to skewer someone so Vancouver and Calgary said "you can have it." and went to their corners where they made toques and mitts.

2. It's the fourth largest city in Canada. Toronto won that fight when it threatened to take yarn and tie Ottawa up.  Montreal came in second and then Calgary. Calgary decided it would rather be the largest rodeo in the world and proceeded to knit saddle blankets and mane ribbons.

3. It was originally named Bytown after John By who was responsible for the Rideau Waterway Construction project. When knitters think of a construction project they're imagining knitting fronts, back and sleeves, then blocking, and peppering the whole process with lots of swearing. As far as I know, John By was not a knitter so who knows what was going on there. Probably a lot of swearing.

4. The name was changed to Ottawa in 1855 because Bytown sounded like a warning to avoid the town all together. They wanted to present the idea that travelers ought to way lay for awhile but then realized that way lay is to forcefully stop someone - so they just wanted people to way. Think about it. Ought to way... Hey, I know it's dumb. But I cut the thread on my sock thinking it was finished and then  I realized that I stocking stitched my cuff instead of ribbing it.

5. There are knitters and crocheters who live in Ottawa.

6. Many of them knit and crochet in French and English. If you go to a knitting circle in Ottawa you will be expected to use both languages in the same sentence at the same time that you count your lace rows. They can swear in French and English too, and if you disturb them too much they can use their needles to stab you while they inflict curses on you in both languages.

So here's our sale this week. It's Ottawa made in Italy. Because that makes sense.

75% Sale

DMC Nordic Spirit Ottawa
70% polyacrylic 30% wool
50 g/32 m/35 y Bulky (6)

Regular Price: $6.00
Sale Price: $1.50

Posted by Anna Maria Junus (happy employee who can knit in Ottawa without knowing French or Italian). 

Monday, April 3, 2017

Clearing Up Misunderstandings and Breaking Laws

There is a rumor going around due to something I wrote which I want to clear up.

The Crafty Lady is not moving. When I wrote that I was moving, I was writing about me personally, Anna, moving to a totally different world called Nanaimo. If you look at the bottom of the blog posts you will notice that I sign them.

So although we appreciate the rush to get out here before our premature death - and by all means please keep it up - know that right now we are not moving and we are alive and well and planning to serve you for years to come. So you can all breathe.

It just shows how important it is to read the entire blog post and not just the first line and the sale. You miss so much if you only do that. Like all my witty repartee. Now why would you want to miss out on that?

Although now that I'm moving and have to leave the store, because the commute is just too far, you will no longer be able to read my witty repartee here on the blog. You'll have to search for it, or buy it instead.

So now that we've settled that...

There is lawlessness going on around here!

Did you know that it is illegal to label any textile "bamboo" only? You have to say "rayon made from bamboo" or "bamboo sourced viscose".

Bamboo is a short fibre used to make houses, furniture and bridges, plus you can eat it too. So if you're stuck on a bamboo bridge, and you get hungry, you can eat the bridge, although that might not be a good idea because then you're left hanging.

 To make bamboo into a soft fibre you have to use chemicals, so it's against the law to just claim that it's made from bamboo. It's still a natural fibre, but it's a natural man made fibre, like paper or children.

Well guess what we found in the store?

Illegal bamboo yarn. And from a well known, long time, highly respected name too!

So we figure it's better in your house than in our store. I mean, really, is any federal authority going to be tossing your house looking for incorrectly labeled yarn? But at any moment, because we are a place of business, we could have a swat team break down the door (even though it's unlocked and it only requires opening) carrying assault rifles and demanding our illegal bamboo yarn. And because we believe that if you're breaking the law you have to do something legal to balance it out, we also have legally labeled yarn on sale too. Besides, it just makes the illegal stuff easier to hide in your house if you put it with the legal stuff.

By the way, did you know that bamboo can grow three feet in twenty four hours? It's like that horror movie I watched as a kid where the plants grew through cracks in doors and windows and wound themselves around their hapless victims.

So here you go. Our sale this week.

75% OFF

Patons Angora Bamboo
55% Bamboo, 35% Angora, 10% Wool
50 g/73 m/80 y Worsted (4)

Sorry, not this colour.

Regular Price: $7.80
Sale Price: $1.95

Sirdar Snuggly baby bamboo
80% Bamboo sourced Viscose, 20% Wool
50 g/95 m/104 y DK (3)

Not this colour either.

Regular Price: $6.00
Sale Price: $1.50

Posted by Anna Maria Junus (happy employee who may or may not have illegal yarn in my stash - maybe I should check that). 

Monday, March 27, 2017

I Want Candy...

I have a son who worked in a candy store. Later he worked in a toy store. It's like every kid's dream when they're little to work in a candy or toy store.

Now he works in a motorcycle store. I guess that means he's growing up. He's a teenage twenty five year old.

I can't really criticize since I work in a candy and toy shop for knitters. We have all kinds of toys for yarnies in beautiful candy colors. One ball is just not enough. You have to try out all kinds of different flavors and textures.

It's like going through Willy Wonka's Chocolate Factory here. Lori is Willy, and Margaret, Anne and I are Oompa Loompas. Okay, I don't like that. Although I guess that means we get to break into dancing and singing about how to raise your children. Yeah, now I really don't want to be an Oompa Loompa. We generally avoid telling people how to raise their children.

But we do encourage consumption of our candy! And if you're willing to join along, we could sing and dance.

And we promise, no wild, crazy rides or squirrels that shove you down a garbage chute. We won't shrink you or stretch you or turn you into a blueberry. Your wild and crazy ride is entirely up to you and your knitting style.

So for this week's sale - here's some candy.

75% OFF

Ice Yarns Candy
100% Acrylic
50 g/60 m Chunky (5)

Regular Price: $4.00
Sale Price: $1.00

Seriously. A dollar! For a ball of yarn!

Posted by Anna Maria Junus (happy employee who consumes way too much of the store's candy.)

Monday, March 20, 2017

Wings of Angels

From the Manos Del Uruguay website....

"Manos del Uruguay is a non-profit social organization which, since 1968, has provided jobs for craftswomen living in Uruguay rural areas...
During 2009, and after a long and exhaustive evaluation process, Manos del Uruguay was accepted as a member of the World Fair Trade Organization, WFTO, which operates in 70 countries and brings together more than 350 organizations, 100% committed to Fair Trade.
This achievement acknowledges Manos del Uruguay mission of eradicating poverty through sustainable economic growth, enabling craftspeople to improve the quality of their craft products, so that, in this way, they can continue their personal development.
We, the craftswomen, are the owners of Manos del Uruguay, and we are part of a non-profit Association, the objective of which is to generate work for rural women, allowing us to stay in our towns, earn our living and develop ourselves as human beings."
So there you go. When you buy Manos yarns you help women support their families in Uruguay in places where they have little opportunity.

Knitters and crocheters like to help people. They are earthly angels who spread socks and scarves around the world, throwing them gleefully out of handcrafted baskets while they sing and pirouette.  . Many of these items hold prayers and love. If artists were to draw yarnies they would need to add wings - knitted, of course, in fair isle patterns, elaborate cables, and assorted textured stitches - to the backs of these people. Halos would turn into elaborate crowns in crocheted lace. Most yarnies would wrinkle up their noses and roll their eyes at this imagery about them, but would have no problem bestowing wings and crowns on other yarnies.

Yarn also likes to be made into useful things. It knows that it is created to be a hat or scarf or a nice cozy sweater to warm someone. Our Wool Classica has been sad because it's been around for so long, just sitting and waiting for someone to take it home and love it and mold it into a thing of useful beauty. 

75% OFF

Manos Del Uruguay Wool Classica
100% Corridale Wool
138 y/126 m/100 g Worsted (5)

Regular Price: $19.00
Sale Price: $4.75

Posted by Anna Maria Junus (happy employee with tattered laughable wings and a broken halo and really wishes she could draw these angels as she envisions them).

Monday, March 13, 2017

Reflections on Reflections

I mentioned before that I'm planning a move. There is a lot of stuff to go through and make decisions on.

I'm not very good at that. There are people who become whirling dervishes and happily fling things into the garbage or giveaway, packing up what little they choose to keep. They can empty an entire house in an hour, dancing and getting a workout with enough energy afterwards to make a six course dinner and a floral bouquet.

I am the kind that will have good intentions. I'll put on some music and even have a timer, promising myself that if I give it a good solid hour with no distractions I can reward myself with a break.

Only I'll come across a journal, a book, or a stack of pictures, and I am off, looking, dreaming, reflecting. Two hours later I haven't gone any further than the book in my hand. That hour of solid organizing and packing can take all day and when I'm done I only have energy for a bowl of cereal.

Unlike creating or making, reflecting requires something that already exists. Sometimes it's hidden away and only requires some light. It might need a mirror to truly see it. Sometimes all it needs is our memories. The baby blanket, the christening outfit, that cardigan that you wore everyday during college, the single mitt that lost its partner, the half finished cabled sweater you were in the process of making for the boyfriend long gone. The things we make today become the reflections we mull over later.

I will eventually get the packing done. Usually I'll begin with good intentions of making time for it, taking my time on it, carefully packing things in an orderly way to make it easier to find later. Those good intentions often turn into last minute scrambles where everything gets flung into boxes and taped up without any organization at all. Clothes, my Kitchen Aid, and yarn could all end up in one box if it gets down to it. That's not what I PLAN to do, but based on my reflections of previous moves, it's what happens.

And while I write this I have the old Supremes song in my head "Reflections of, the way life used to be..."

So here you go, A song stuck in your head and yarn that is reflective.

75% OFF

150 G/75 M/82 Y BULKY (6)

Free pattern on ball band


100 G/90 M/98 Y CHUNKY (5)

Free pattern on ball band


100 G/80 M/88 Y CHUNKY (5)

Free pattern on ball band


We also have a couple of Lumio leaflets for more patterns.

Only $5.00 each!

Posted by Anna Maria Junus (happy employee who really has to stop reflecting so much and start packing more).