Thursday, September 21, 2017

It's all about the stitch!

Have you admired placemats, scarves or other items knit with the Linen Stitch?  The Linen Stitch is easy to master and quick to impress!  It creates a very pretty, dense texture that looks like woven fabric.
The Linen Stitch is always worked on an even number of stitches.  It consists of 2 rows:
               Row 1:  *K1, slip1 with yarn in front.  Repeat from *to last stitch, K1.
               Row 1:  *P1, slip 1 with yarn in back.  Repeat from *to last stitch, P1.
              Repeat these 2 rows for pattern.  When slipping stitches, always slip as if to purl.

Yes,  that's all there is to it!  Now you see how easily  this stitch could be mastered!   If you worry you might get bored with these two rows, add some fun to the stitch by adding color. You can use as many colors as you wish.  Have fun changing the look of a project by changing the color scheme.

If you choose to work in a single color, you will create a solid fabric with texture.  The wrong side looks like Seed Stitch, creating a reversible fabric, great for scarves.  Knit with two colors and alternate colors every two rows.  Two colors really enhance the woven effect. Choose three or more colors, and you will make a speckled fabric, an option that might be great for stashbusting.   Using colors allows you to see how colors work together...don't be shy about making your own combinations!   Linen Stitch allows you to use as few or as many colors as you wish.  Do you have some variegated yarn you would like to use?   It will look nice in Linen stitch.
Linen Stitch is lovely in fine yarns;  more graphic in bulky yarns.   Available patterns include home projects and projects for both men and women.  Following are some free Linen Stitch patterns available on Ravelry:

       The Mini Mania Scarf
                                                       by Sara Core requires Fingering Yarn.   



Linen Stitch Wristwarmers
     by Pepii require Sport Weight Yarn.

Next time you visit the shop, don't miss our "Linen Stitch Scarf" model by Fiberlicious. This beautiful scarf is knit in 5 colors of  "Colors by Kristin."  Choose one of these patterns and give the Linen Stitch a try.  You'll be glad you did.


Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Fall is in the air.  The temperatures are cooler, the dark of night comes earlier, and the kids are back in school.  From my own Kindergarten days through 30-plus years of teaching, Fall is 'back to school' time for me.   I'm guessing many of you have similar memories.  To me, Fall asks the question, "What will you learn that's new to you?"  If life asks you the same question, perhaps The Stitchin' Den can help you. 

Remember, you are never too old to learn something new.  In fact, research is showing that learning will help keep your brain young!  We don't teach French or calculus, but if you would like to  learn a new fiber art, we may be able to help. We offer classes in knitting, crocheting, needlework, and quilting. 

Current, on-going knitting classes include Building Blocks, Building in Color, and Building with Lace based on Michelle Hunter's books.   We welcome new students in these classes.  Please call the shop or visit the website for details. 

Beginning Crochet classes are held the 2nd and 4th Thursday of each month.  Beginning Knitting classes are held the 1st and 3rd Thursday of each month.  Each of these classes is $20.00 with 20% off all materials for the class purchased here.  Reservations must be made in advance.

A new Beginning Sock knitting class begins October 2 with Alison.  Classes will be held at the shop on Monday evenings from 5 to 7 p.m. on October 2, 16, & 30.  The three classes are $60.00, with 20% off of materials for the class.  Reserve your spot now.

We will announce other classes soon, but we do like to customize our classes to our students' needs and wants. Would you like to learn to knit cables, or a hat, or ????  Or would you rather crochet that vest you saw in a magazine?  Or maybe you're ready to learn how to needlepoint or quilt?  If you don't see what you want, ask. We are open to suggestions. We do offer private classes, but there is always a chance someone is interested in learning the same thing.  Maybe you have a group of friends that have a common desire to learn a stitchin' skill.  We will arrange a class that works for your group.  Let us know what you want!

Enjoy your fall by learning a new stitch or two at The Stitchin' Den!

Thursday, August 10, 2017

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Hot August is here, and The Stitchin' Den is boiling!  Well, okay, the morning temperatures have been in the 50s this week in Estes Park.........but our shop is hot!   Knitters and crocheters are coming here for Hot August Knits--the annual southern Wyoming/northern Colorado Yarn Crawl.  

For us, Yarn Crawl this year features the Building With Lace book, the third in Michelle Hunter's "Building" series.  The pattern calls for HiKoo Rylie yarn, a scrumptious mix of baby alpaca, mulberry silk, and linen in truly beautiful colors.  Paula's class based on this book has started, but there is still room for you to join.  Start now and by this time next year, you will be a master lace knitter!  Call the shop for information on this class.  


The "Sisterhood of the Sweater" is another Hot August Knits special.  This sweater reflects the designer's awareness of how many times women see a pattern they like, but think they shouldn't make the garment because they don't look like the model.  Katie Rempe found 8 women ranging in age from 20 to 60 in different shapes, sizes, and heights  and asked them to choose their own colors and knit the same sweater in their respective sizes.  The result is a sweater that looks great on everyone!

The Stitchin' Den carries the three HiKoo yarns used in this sweater:  Kenzie, Simplinatural, and Sueno.  Come pick out your colors.  This would be a great sweater for the coming fall weather.  

When you are in the shop, be sure to see our large collection of Arequipa yarns, which include Worsted, Boucle, Fur, and Adventura.  All of these yarns, in combinations of wool and alpaca, are available in neutral shades of grey, ecru, and taupe. The yarns in this collection are a true delight to a crafter's sense of touch!  For our Yarn Crawl, we have MANY models to inspire your creative juices. Here are a few: 

The Fibre Co.'s Luma yarn is another Hot August Knits trunk show item.  Luma is a mixture of merino wool, organic cotton, linen, and silk.  This DK-weight yarn has been intentionally crafted with subtle texture and color variances.  The Fibre Co. has nicknamed this beautiful yarn "Threads of Sunlight", a unique name for a unique yarn.  Knit this into a  'Stone Point Poncho' or 'Bennett Creek Sweater', then stand back and enjoy the compliments while wearing it.


Last but not least, Hot August Knits at The Stitchin' Den includes 25% off any Christmas project you choose for crafting.  That includes fabric, cross stitch, needlepoint, and yarn!
Christmas is only four months away, so come in and start gathering ideas AND saving on your crafting!


Saturday, July 1, 2017

Roll out those lazy, crazy days of summer!

Summer is the time to slow down and enjoy your favorite fiber art.  Fiber lovers who attended the Estes Park Wool Market got a great start to their summer, observing animals, attending workshops, and visiting the marketplace.   If you missed the Market this year, mark your calendar now to attend in June, 2018.   Many more fiber related events are yet to come this summer.                   

The Collective Stitch, June 1 to August 31, provides a fun summer adventure for cross stitchers.  The theme for this year's designs is, "A Postcard from...".   From June 1 to August 31, each participating shop will feature an original post card design in a uniform size, so you can stitch them together if you wish.   This is The Stitchin' Den's design, created by Sharlotte Devere of The Queen Stitch:

Visit the shops, collect your free charts, and stitch them under a shade tree or by your campsite.  

Quilters:  The Row by Row Experience is a great summer stitching opportunity for you. Shops throughout the world each present a quilt block based on the current year's theme, which is "On the Go" for 2017.  Visit participating shops and pick up your free, original design pattern.  This is our row: 

Also, kits with the fabric you need to create our row are available at the shop.

We created two Row by Row blocks for juniors.  What a fun way to learn beginning quilting skills!  Your junior "wannabe" quilter may choose one of these designs:                                              
 "Rover" What a cutie with his pom-pom nose!

"Friendship Bracelet" allows for lots of creativity.  
Make it your own by adding ribbon, beads or...

The Row by Row Experience began June 21st.  Visit quilt shop during your summer travels.  These quilt blocks may keep you in stitches throughout the winter!

The big event for yarnies, "Hot August Knits Yarn Crawl,"  takes place from July 29 to August 13.  Grab your fellow "yarnies"  and visit yarn shops from Southern Wyoming to Northern Colorado!  Get your passport online or at your first stop.  Each shop you visit will stamp your passport to make you eligible for that store's prize.   Visit every store to be eligible for a Grand Prize, containing donations from your favorite yarn companies.   Last year, ten Grand Prizes were given to ten lucky winners.  This photo shows one of last year's lucky winners: 

Gift yourself by enjoying one or all of these events.  Slow down, kick back, and RELAX!  That's what summer is for!