Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Yarn Mood Changes

Spring is here; the sun is out, the flowers are blooming. Spring has also sprung inside at Yarns By Design! Our customers' eyes seem to be moving away from the grays, blacks and neutrals of winter and over to the pastels and bright palettes.

I started this crochet beach bag  today and definitely was in a bright and sunny mood and had the beach on my mind when I selected the color scheme. I'm making it with Berroco Comfort, a soft worsted weight yarn found at Yarns By Design. It is machine washable after a day at the beach. Look for the finished product in our window display soon.

Feels like sunshine working on these hexagons!

Our shop is full of fun colors to get your spring and summer projects completed. Our Hedgehog Fibres collection is especially colorful and will be sure to put you in the mood of your choice. Whether it's the calming blues, the happy yellows or the romantic pinks…we have the shade for you!

Check out the colors of these Hedfgehog Fibres!

What's your favorite color(s) to work with this time of year? We'd love to hear from you.


Sarah at Yarns By Design

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

The Traveling Fiber Artist

I've had the good fortune of having some amazing travel plans in my recent calendar. My travels made me realize how important it is to plan ahead when it comes to packing the perfect project to match your trip. Here are a few things to consider before you are on the go:

-Type of transportation. While knitting needles and crochet hooks are allowed on your carry-on luggage for flights, keep in mind scissors are only allowed if less than 4 inches on domestic flights. Nail clippers are a good alternative option. Check out TSA's list of allowed items: https://www.tsa.gov/travel/security-screening/whatcanibring. If your trip is mostly by automobile, think about whether or not your travel time will take place during daylight hours. Interior lights or other light up devices may be distracting to your driver. If traveling by bus or train it may be a good idea to find out if you'll have easy access to your bag or if it will be secured away and out of reach.

Crocheting on a plane helps me pass the time. 

-Time allowance. In the past, I found myself overpacking when it comes to yarn. I completely overestimated how much free time I'd have to work on my projects. Try to tally up your travel time and your down time and make a realistic estimate.

-Pattern picking. If you are short on space in your bag, choose a pattern that doesn't require a lot of color change and can be completed in one skein. You can even pick a pattern that can be completed and worn during your trip! The project pictured below was used with scrap yarn I was thrilled to finally use.
Be sure to have a paper copy of your pattern.  While all of the online patterns are wonderful, you never know when you won't have access to WiFi or your mobile device is low on battery power.

Travel projects can be completed in time to wear on your trip. 

-Choosing yarn. When traveling, I try to avoid yarns that tend to shed. No one wants those fuzzies all over their clothes! I like to make sure my yarn is already wound or is one that has a center pull option. Be sure to keep your project free from dirt and stains that might arise during your trip by keeping it in a project bag when not in use. Shop our Project Bags just in time for your next vacation.

-Challenge yourself.  Don't be afraid to increase your creativity during travel time. One of my favorite project packing challenges was successfully making a pair of baby booties and hair accessories on a road trip to the baby shower. It was completed in perfect time from door-to-door.

-Venture out. If I go to a new city, I always try to check out a local yarn shop. Perhaps pack enough yarn to get to the city then switch to a new project with some new yarn on your return trip home.

Checking out the yarn scene in New Zealand. 

Tell us how you like to travel with your projects, we'd love to hear from you!


Sarah LaVoie

Yarns By Design

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Go Green with Dryer Dots

Earth Day is just around the corner on April 22nd. Looking for ideas to make a difference? We have just the product for you to make an earth friendly effort each time you dry a load of laundry: Dryer Dots!

This product by Gleener comes in a bag of six dryer balls, each about the size of a tennis ball. They are a fabulous alternative to chemical-covered fabric sheets. They are made up of 100% New Zealand wool and soak up moisture and cut dry time by 30%. Other benefits include reducing static and helping to soften and separate items in the dryer. Dryer Dots are free of chemicals and fragrances, making them ideal for anyone with allergies or asthma. They can be used with any dryer-friendly fabric.

Use 3 balls for small loads and all 6 for medium to large loads. 

Gleener's directions for use seem pretty easy, too: "Toss into dryer and run cycle as usual"!

Stop by our boutique to be on your way to a greener 2017 or you can get them on our website: http://yarnsbydesignpa.com/dryer-dots-eco-fabric-softener-6-pack.html

Tell us how being a knitter or crocheter has made you more eco-conscious or how you are making a difference this Earth Day. We'd love to hear your comments!


Yarns By Design

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Knit and crochet mistakes: you aren't alone.

Last week, I wrote about starting a crochet summer pattern for a beach cover up. It was going so smoothly and then…(you've all been there) I got stuck. I tried talking to the pattern: "what are you talking about?!" but it didn't answer back. I unraveled and started the section over then over again. After expressing my frustrations to my knitter friend, she tells me "keep frogging or move on to something else". She then explained to me what frogging means. In knitting and crocheting, a frog says "rip it rip it" referring to undoing rows of work due to errors. So I frogged some more but it still didn't look right. I felt like a failure. I consider myself an advanced crocheter, so why couldn't I make this work?
I turned to the pattern on Ravelry.com and realized I wasn't alone. There were other crocheters out there showing the same frustrations. Some got through it, some decided to iron out the errors on their own and some (including me) gave up and moved on to something else. It feels good to let go!
I found this similar pattern http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/summer-beach-cover-up and am moving along nicely with it. Lesson learned: if you get the pattern from Ravelry, look at the project notes from fellow fiber friends if they are available. There are great tips and wonderful pictures too.
Interested in learning more about this feature on Ravelry and how to take advantage of everything else it has to offer? Sign up for our Ravelry 101 class at Yarns By Design on February 23, 2016 from 5:30-7pm. http://yarnsbydesignpa.com/social/classes.html

New pattern + same yarn= happy crocheter!



Tuesday, February 14, 2017

It's Never Too Early!

It's still cold outside but that doesn't mean it's too soon to work on warm weather projects. I've just started crocheting this beach cover up and it's already putting visions in my head of sunshine, sand and waves! http://www.redheart.com/free-patterns/south-beach-cover (Also available on Ravelry).

I was a little hesitant to put aside my chunky and wool yarns for cotton but this Cascade Yarns "Sunseeker" made the switch easy. It has a perfect amount of metallic to catch the sunlight and make any project glisten. Yarns By Design has it available in several summer shades. Stay tuned for more updates and ideas on warm weather projects!

Look out, Summer- this project has sparkle!

Our Sunseeker by Cascade Yarns love the sunshine!

Yarns By Design

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Tin Can Knits Mad Colour

Winter can be so so dreary, especially in February. It is my least favorite my least favorite month, I start to get sick of winter and I am ready for spring. I forget we still have so far to go, and its is so.so.gray… 

That is where Tin Can Knits come into play! Their new book, Mad Colour, is full of bright beautiful patterns and colors! We just recently received our copies of it, and with the the much anticipated trunk show! Wow! These ladies are super talented! Their use of color with this book is unbelievable! I think my personal favorite thing about their style, is the ease in which each pattern is written. A newbie could take on any one of their patterns and be fine, because of how well they are written. The detail in explaining each step, they don't miss a beat! Below are some photos of the color bomb currently exploding at YBD! Come by and see it for yourself, and be sure to grab a copy of Mad Colour today, online or in our boutique! 

The Prism Hat...

Tin Can Knits new book, Mad Colour...

 The Bounce Blanket

Wednesday, December 28, 2016

Happy New Year!

We hope you all had a wonderful and relaxing holiday weekend! I saw this meme this morning that perfectly describes the week in between Christmas and New Years, and it made me laugh…

I don't know about you, but this is very true for me! I have such a hard time getting back into the swing of things during this week… I just feel it can all be put on hold until the start of the New Year! So with that, we hope you all have a happy and healthy New Year! 

New to the shop this week we have Feza Yarn! We selected two different yarns to start with that we knew our customers would love! First is the Feza Jewel…

This yarn is a super soft is 100% acrylic and metallic. It knits up beautifully, making it a great yarn for a fancy shawl! We have ours sampled in The Daniella Shawl, a free pattern on Ravelry that takes just 3 balls! 

Next is the Baby Gradient Blanket kits. This super soft baby yarn is made up of 50% Cotton and 50% Viscose. It is machine washable as well. The blanket is light enough for a summer baby and yet warm enough for winter. We have 4 different color combos to choose from in this hand dyed yarn! 

All of these new items are available on our website and in our boutique! 

Once again, Happy New Year to all of our customers! Because of you we get to do what we love! Thank you for all your support over the last year! We look forward to seeing you all in 2017!