Happy I Love Yarn Day!

i-love-yarn-day
Today is I Love Yarn Day, a celebration of all things fiber-related! Whether you’re a knitter, crocheter, embroiderer, or a little bit of everything, yarn enthusiasts are encouraged to not only partake in their favorite yarn activity today, but also encourage others to give the fiber arts a try.

We’re honored to be able to share the joy of the needle arts and all things yarn-related with you every single day of the year. In honor of I Love Yarn Day, we’re sharing some stories of how our staff members were first introduced to the magic of yarn…and we’d love to hear yours, too! Just drop us a line in the comments or on our Facebook page!

“My mom was a very skilled and avid knitter. Regardless of what she was working on, she would stop to knit something for me—usually a new Fair Isle to match my latest ski clothes. But one day, I knew it was time, and I asked her to teach me. Although she was a very patient teacher, her eyebrows did raise when I announced that my first complete project would be a red cashmere scarf for my then boyfriend (it worked; he’s now my husband!). She wrote out a pattern, I bought the yarn and needles, and set off.

red-cashmere-scarf

Jeane’s scarf being inspected by Tazio the cat.

“Months and months passed; the planned Christmas gift was now to be a birthday gift; no wait, next Christmas! I finally finished it about two weeks before Christmas and promptly shipped it off to Mom for her to repair the numerous dropped stitches (I hadn’t given her enough time to teach me that part!). As usual, Mom worked wonders; Bob received his handknitted scarf, which he still wears. Of the handmade things I’ve made, I love this scarf the best—thank you, Mom!” —Jeane Hutchins, Editor, PieceWork Magazine

“In 1985, I bought a women’s magazine that promised to teach readers how to knit. It made good on that promise, and I wish I’d saved it. When I probably should have been studying, I practiced knit and purl stitches with some acrylic yarn and needles from Woolworth—all I could afford on a college student’s budget (and yes, Woolworth still existed back then). Thirty years later, my yarn stash takes up at least a quarter of my crafting area, which in turn takes up half of my house. I’ve come a long way since that first scarf.

knit-scarf

My first (pathetic) scarf, with curling edges.

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A recent creation from my handspun. I’ve come a long way, baby.

handspun-scarf
“In 1996, when I should have been writing my dissertation, I drove 30 miles to a town with a fiber shop. There I met the owners (whom I still count among my friends) and bought my first drop spindle, later my first wheel, and my first two looms. I still own everything except the first loom. While the commercial yarns available today are stunning, and I still buy a lot of them, the sensation of creating a yarn can’t be beat. This is why I love yarn—it allows me to procrastinate with a purpose.” —Deb Gerish, Group Content Manager, Specialty Fiber

“I was first introduced to the fiber arts in seventh grade. A few of my friends had joined our school’s chapter of Project Linus, a nationwide program that encourages kids to knit and crochet blankets to be donated to babies and children in hospital care. Our program focused specifically on crocheting—something I knew nothing about but I was eager to learn, especially because it supported such a great cause (and we got free pizza every Friday when we met, which was pretty great). I found the act of crocheting to be so simple and meditative, and crocheting with friends made it all that much more enjoyable.

“Unfortunately, my crocheting fell by the wayside over the years and I never advanced beyond basic blankets. It wasn’t until I joined F+W this past year that I found myself immersed in the fiber arts once again. I attended Interweave Yarn Fest this past spring and was enthralled by the enthusiasm of the attendees. I sat in on a weaving workshop, spun my first bit of yarn, and took a billion photos of all the colorful roving, yarn, and other products available. It was then that I realized how much spirit and energy surrounds the yarn community—it’s absolutely contagious! I can’t wait to go back again and learn something new.” —Gina Kuzmick, Assistant Editor, Specialty Fiber

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Look at that glorious roving! Shot at Interweave Yarn Fest 2015.

Take some time today to reflect on your journey as a fiber artist and enjoy your favorite craft. And if you need some additional inspiration on how to celebrate today and share the joy of yarn with others, be sure to visit the I Love Yarn Day website for projects, patterns, and more!

Happy holidays!

sig_gina

Happy I Love Yarn Day!

Today is I Love Yarn Day, a holiday that's pretty much one of the best days of the year for spinners. It's a day to take time, relax, and enjoy some spinning, knitting, crocheting, or weaving. It's also an opportunity to boast about how much you love yarn in hopes of encouraging others to give the fiber arts a try!

In honor of I Love Yarn Day, we've invited a few of our staff members here at Interweave to share their own personal yarn stories. We all started from somewhere, and it's really awesome to see how far we've all come:

My boss at my first job out of college was a big knitter. I'm still not exactly sure what first piqued my interest, but I was very shortly hooked. You know how when you've been playing a lot of Tetris and the pieces keep dropping when you close your eyes? That's how knitting was for me. I didn't have much money at the time, so I learned a lot by reading. I used to haunt the newsstand waiting for the new copy of Interweave Knits to come out!

At first I wasn't interested in spinning, but one year at the New York Sheep and Wool festival a friend showed me a beautiful Cormo/silk top she'd just bought and the seed was planted. After I started at Interweave, then Spin-Off editor Amy Clarke Moore generously gave me a spinning class she'd won at Maggie Casey's store, and I was off… I've been a spinner ever since. —Anne Merrow, Editor, Spin-Off


Deb Gerish's first scarf. Check out those curling edges!

In 1985, I bought a women’s magazine that promised to teach readers how to knit. It made good on that promise, and I wish I’d saved it. When I probably should have been studying, I practiced knit and purl stitches with some acrylic yarn and needles from Woolworth—all I could afford on a college student’s budget (and yes, Woolworth still existed back then). Thirty years later, my yarn stash takes up at least a quarter of my crafting area, which in turn takes up half of my house. I’ve come a long way since that first scarf.

In 1996, when I should have been writing my dissertation, I drove 30 miles to a town with a fiber shop. There I met the owners (whom I still count among my friends) and bought my first drop spindle, later my first wheel, and my first two looms. I still own everything except the first loom. While the commercial yarns available today are stunning, and I still buy a lot of them, the sensation of creating a yarn can’t be beat. This is why I love yarn—it allows me to procrastinate with a purpose. —Deb Gerish, Group Content Manager, Specialty Fiber


Deb has certainly come a long way as a knitter!
 

I was first introduced to the fiber arts in seventh grade. A few of my friends had joined our school's chapter of Project Linus, a nationwide program that encourages kids to knit and crochet blankets to be donated to babies and children in hospital care. Our program focused specifically on crocheting—something I knew nothing about but I was eager to learn, especially because it supported such a great cause (and we got free pizza every Friday when we met, which was pretty great). I found the act of crocheting to be so simple and meditative, and crocheting with friends made it all that much more enjoyable.

Unfortunately, my crocheting fell by the wayside over the years and I never advanced beyond basic blankets. It wasn't until I joined F+W this past year that I found myself immersed in the fiber arts once again. I attended Interweave Yarn Fest this past spring and was enthralled by the enthusiasm of the attendees. I sat in on a weaving workshop, spun my first bit of yarn, and took a billion photos of all the colorful roving, yarn, and other products available. It was then that I realized how much spirit and energy surrounds the yarn community—it's absolutely contagious! I can't wait to go back again and learn something new. —Gina Kuzmick, Assistant Editor, Specialty Fiber
Just some of the glorious roving on display at Interweave Yarn Fest 2015!
 

What's your yarn story? We'd love to hear it—drop us a line in the comments or give us a shout on Facebook!

Happy Spinning,


Happy I Love Yarn Day!

Happy I Love Yarn Day everyone! 

In honor of this very special day, I wanted to share a bit about my love affair with yarn and some of the fruits of my recent yarn pilgrimage, er…vacation, in the UK.

Like many of you, I grew up exclusively using acrylic, 100% man-made fibers. I never even knew such things as yarn shops existed. However, once I smooshed 100% merino and caressed pure silk there were fireworks; big, sparkly, yarn fireworks. And then, when I actually crocheted with it and saw how the stitches defined like magic and the drape of a garment flowed like soft butter I became hooked for life. And while these days, economy requires that we all pick and choose which projects can afford to be made and at what cost, I treat myself to these yarn indulgences whenever possible. I liken it to a budget conscious foodie needing a little crème brulee every once in a while.  

Recently, I found myself on holiday visiting family in the UK. Detours for yarn were frequent. I got to stop by a shop I have been drooling over for years, the world famous Loop in Islington.  Here, I not only acquired some great finds for myself, but also snagged a hard-to-find skein of Wollmeise for my partner in all things yarn-y, Sarah Read. At the free-spirited I Knit London I picked up the most sumptuous 100 % silk laceweight, dyed by the owners themselves.

In teal, some lovely laceweight in a delicate baby alpaca/silk/cashmere from Etsy seller JunoFiberArts, an equally delightful naturally-dyed lavender cashmere/angora/lambswool blend from Skye Shilasdair , and the 100% Silk Laceweight from I Knit London.

The trip culminated (yarn-wise, at least) in a tour of Norton Priory in Runcorn, Cheshire, and its gardens, where we unexpectedly came across the most fantastic yarn bomb. A local group was commissioned to pepper the grounds with yarn; a fantastic addition if I do say so myself. All in all one of the best yarn experiences of my life to date.
Norton Priory & Gardens in Runcorn, Cheshire
Goose Bomb in Norton Priory & Gardens in Runcorn, Cheshire

You don't have to go across the world, though, to join me in celebrating I Love Yarn Day. Just dive into your stash, stop by your LYS, crochet in public; anything yarn-related will do! Viva la I Love Yarn Day!!!

To help you all celebrate yarn day, we here at Crochet Me are giving away a skein of Spud & Chloe Sweater to one lucky reader.  Just go to the Crochet Me page on Facebook and let us know what you would make with this special yarn by commenting below where this story appears in the news feed. That's it! We'll randomly draw a winner next Friday. Good luck, and take a look at this smooshy goodness!

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