Happy New Year!

2007 has been a great year. We moved across the street, we started our shop's blog, we joined Ravelry, we have contributed knitted items to The Red Scarf Project and Covenant House. Our classes expanded to include crochet and fair isle. Most importantly, we have met many knitters and crocheters.

We look forward to 2008 and wish everyone a happy new year!

New Yarn: Aslan Trends

We have a new yarn by Aslan Trends called Del Sur. This bulky yarn knits at 10 stitches over 4 inches and each hank comes has 87 yards. For this thick and thin yarn a size 13 or 15 US needle is recommended.

Besides a simple garter stitch scarf, you can knit a drop stitch scarf, or pair it with a very thin yarn and make a Scribble scarf.
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Letter from George

Dear stix-n-stitches,

You may know me from my books, Curious George Learns to Count 1 to 100, Curious George's First Day of School, and New Adventures of Curious George, as well as my movie Curious George. Lately, I left the man with the yellow hat to hang out with Fran. Fran has some trolls that live in her car but she's really cool. Here I am in her bag.

You may have noticed that when I was with the man with the yellow hat, I never had clothes. Since Fran is an avid knitter she made me this and I quote "top down raglan" out of "sock yarn".

It's snazzy. Since I am originally from a warmer climate, this sweater is perfect for me. Anyways, I just wanted to say it was nice hanging out Thursday night and you must have known I was coming because the banana cream pie was yummy!


Curious George
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Thursday Night Update

Well, the stix blog is back from a winter holiday siesta. Thursday Night had many things going on....

Carol finished her top down cable pattern sweater that she improvised. It is truly beautiful.

Remi picked up her Einstein Coat which has been hibernating for a few months.

Patty is on a mitten kick.

Fran and her friend Lorraine were in deep discussion about mirroring a hat pattern.

Debra was working on a project which I have been prohibited from photographing until it is completely done. But, I can type that the project will be revealed in due time.

There was a visit from an adorable dog named Maya.

There was baked goods from Patty's mom, Banana Cream Pie, and Italian chocolates brought by Shelly.

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Season's Greetings

This time of the year always reminds us of chilly weather, snow, and a fireplace to snuggle near while relaxing with hot cocoa. We wish everyone health, happiness, and good tidings during this holiday season.

Weekend Wrap-Up

We had a lot of great visits today that ranged in pre-grocery stopovers to quick holiday gift purchases. However, when we are in the presence of knitting expertise it has to be documented. Louise stopped by with her husband who both modelled her knitting achievements (yes both sweaters were knit by Louise who is working on several My So Called Scarf in Cascade Handpainted).

Eric and Mary Ellen also stopped by to practice new skills. Attention: to all our Thursday Knit Night Regulars: Eric has learned to knit! Eric is a fabulous crocheter who you might remember improvises his own patterns. His friend taught him to knit (yesterday). Mary Ellen who is demonstrating a knit stitch was practicing her Magic Loop skills.

Tomorrow is Christmas Eve and we are open from 10-3pm in case there are friends, family, or significant others who may need to pick up that emergency gift. Speaking of emergency gifts, only two employees were working on ribbed cowls in Misti Alpaca Chunky and were finishing in a day.
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Cable Scarf

Debra has whipped up a new pattern which is a reversible cable scarf modeled here in Alpalite.

Alpalite is a gorgeous yarn from Filatura di Crosa made of Alpaca and Polyester. The yarn knits at 3-4 stitches per inch and each skein has 82 yards. The pattern is free with purchase of yarn at the shop.
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Thursday Night, more stuff...

The Calorimetry is going strong as Remi picked out her button for her recent accomplishment (and I think more yarn, Fjord, to knit more).

Mary is almost done with her Library Wrap in Berroco's Keltic yarn. This project shows off the variation in colors perfectly.
Ellen finished the Baby Soft Cardigan from Clara Parkes' new book The Knitter's Book of Yarn. Actually, Ellen like Remi, was picking buttons for this project.

The largest project of the night came from Mary Beth (who is actually holding the blanket up) which she started in the 1990's.
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Thursday Night Update

"Season's Greetings"

The Trolls stopped by this Thursday to wish everyone warm wishes during this holiday season. They came dressed up in their best attire and brought their friend the badger who is sporting his new hoodie.

Kathy and Carol stopped by with their famous Peppermint Chocolate Bark. Here's a photo of this yumminess after Patty unwrapped and rewrapped it so I could snap a photo.

The night ended with a nice surprise from Fran-ti-claus who handed out mini Raw Shea Butter as demonstrated below...
Mary Ellen, Ellen, and Jamie were giddy about the surprise.

Tomorrow, I will post photos of knitted items.
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Tuesday, not Wednesday

These photos are from Tuesday!

Notice the grin, that's because she finished her Sheep Shop scarf in the shop. Look at the splashes of color!
Someone finished a Noni bag for someone else. That is all that can be revealed for now.
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We collected quite a lot of scarves and hats for those in need at Covenant House. You guys knitted beautiful items which will keep some individuals warm this cold winter.

Well, today, those items were picked up by Jeanette and her one of her Covenant House co-workers (see below) to whisk them away to the appropriate folks.

They were so happy to pick up the scarves and they were a pleasure to meet. More importantly, we were so happy these items will go to someone for this holiday. To all those who have contributed to this project and other charitable knitting events at the shop, we say, "Thank You".
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Holiday Hours

Holiday Hours
Tue- 12/18- 10AM-5PM
Wed-12/19-10AM-8PM - We will stay open until 8PM
Thu- 12/20-10AM-9PM
Fri 12/21-10AM-6PM- We will stay open until 6PM
Sat- 12/22-10AM-5PM
Sun- 12/23-Noon-5PM
Mon-12/24-10-3PM -We will be open for last minute shopping!
Tue- 12/25- Closed
Fri -12/28-11AM-6PM
Sat- 12/29-10AM-5PM
Monday 12/31- Closed
Tues- New Years Day- Closed

Please leave us a comment and let us know what you think of the new hours.

Misti Alpaca expands...

It's obvious that the Misti Alpaca Chunky is a hit. We received additional colors (including handpainted variegated colors).
Around 2-3 skeins makes a luscious scarf and such a quick knit.

If you are in need of that quick knit project stop by quickly as this yarn has been leaving the store as we put it on the shelf.

Isn't it pretty?
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Weekend Wrap-Up

The weather has continued to be cold, wet, and drop some snow. This is great weather to be inside under a warm blanket with a cup of hot cocoa and knitting. Mary Pat stopped by today so we could see her two finished sweaters and coordinating scarves. Mary Pat used Ella Rae Classic for the sweaters (two skeins) and found some Claudia Handpainted Yarn in her stash for matching scarves. How adorable!

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Holiday Wishlist: Under $25

Another sampling of various items that make a wonderful gift. The items shown here fall under the $25 mark. There is also always yarn or a stix gift certificate. If you want something specific fill out a Holiday Wishlist and then just let a loved one know that they can come to the shop and buy exactly what you want.

Left to Right:
Yarn Mugs
Decorative stitch markers (two sets shown, large one is cute phrases with container and smaller one is a bead)
Harmony Stitch Dictionaries : crochet (green), knit and purl (purple), lace and eyelet (pink)
Lantern Moon project bag
Lantern Moon needles
Bryspun Rosewood Needles
Interweave Knitting Companion
Stitch n' Bitch audiotape
Handmade wood shawl closure
Crochet Perpetual Calendar
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Marathon Knitter?

Knitters have a tendency to want to share their zeal and love of knitting by giving holidays gifts that involve their favorite craft. Sometimes, this leads to our downfall. One of our customers in her first year of knitting gave friends and family each a handmade scarf (it totalled around 18). When we imagine giving all these gifts we can sometimes forget all the time the gifts may require and thus the birth of marathon knitting sessions.

If you knit for a whole day and for some people an afternoon then you are marathon knitting. Marathon knitting can lead to physical pain in your fingers, wrists, or hands which over long periods of time can lead to carpal tunnel.

We want to highlight preventitive measures:

Avoid marathon knitting/crocheting sessions.

Take frequent breaks.

Debra recommends taking a break every 30 minutes and stretching your fingers, hands, and wrists.

Click here to see exercises recommended by Berroco. When you take your break, don't forget to stretch your hands.

Sunday recommends working on several projects. The projects should be in a different gauge or different size needle. The variety will be good for your hands.

Sit in a comfortable chair where good lighting is available (take care of your eyes).

A few of us at stix oftentimes recommend circular needles and one of the reasons is that they take the weight and bulk off your hands and wrists (the weight of the project will fall on your lap).

Thursday Night Announcement

The shop is closed due to the weather. In case you don't have a window it is not pretty outside. We want everyone to be safe and warm (and in your zen space for knitting). We will see you next week!

Holiday Wishlist : Under $10

Here's a photo demonstrating a sample of many things you can pick up in the shop for under $10 which can be combined together for a nice gift basket or can be added as a finishing touch for a holiday gift in addition to a gift certificate or yarn! Ceramic sheep is not for sale but placed in the picture because the photographer thought it looked nice.

From top going clockwise:

The Secret Language of Knitters

Lantern Moon Bee tape measure

Sheep Post Its

Kitchener Stitch Dog Tag

American Flag tape measure

Watermelon tape measure

Snip-it Scissors

Mini Knitting Needles

Bamboo Needles

Mini Sock Blocker Keychain with Mini Sock Pattern

Della Q project bag in brown and blue floral print

Itty Witty Knitty cards

And-but of course- YARN!
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Weekend Wrap=Up

Ann stopped by on Sunday. Ann is such a fabulous knitter and she spent some time knitting at the front table. Ann is modeling not only her stunning sweater she knit but also her felted jester hat (it has bells!). The pattern is available at the shop and is Fiber Trends pattern.

As well, Ann showed off her felted crown. Granted the crown is a gift for someone else, look at how cute !
Jill also stopped by with a beautiful wrap which still needs some final finishing. Hopefully, she will bring the wrap again to the shop so we can get a picture.
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Also in the shop Thursday was Lisa. Lisa who has completed her monkey socks took on knitting the reader's wrap in Arucania for her boyfriend's mom. This is a simple pattern and contains complimentary pockets knitted in seed stitch and sewed on both ends.

Lucy completed this smooshy pink scarf. It is very soft. Tis' the season for scarves!

Lastly, we wanted to take this moment to wish the best to Heather. Pictured below, Heather is in the center, Sherri is on the right, and their friend (who I was not introduced, so sorry no name for the sake of this post) stopped by after a going away dinner. Heather will be leaving the Garden State to study for four years in Singapore.

Heather is wearing the Gryffindor scarf she knit and is sporting a stylish new hair style (the bob is in!). Heather has to finish her dad's sweater which she is knitting in Louet Gems in a crisp navy blue (she brought him to the store during the moving sale on a Thursday night, I was so impressed he had such a great sense of humor). Anyways, we just want to wish Heather a safe trip, best wishes in her studies, and definitely stop by to see us when you visit!
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