Category Archives: Make it!

Project Inspiration- things to knit and crochet

Making Magazine No. 5 – It’s here!

The Colour Issue of Making Magazine is now in the shop and in the webshop too!

This magazine is a whole lotta crafty inspiration crammed into less then a foot square. The photography is dreamy but the real draw is the myriad of sweet project ideas this booklet holds.

The Color Issue contains a wonderful natural dye project, a book binding tutorial, lovely embroidery and sewing ideas and of course knitting patterns.  I mentioned the springy sleeveless jumper called Ula Tee in my last post. It’s made with Quince and Co Sparrow which we now have in The Knit Café -Yay! There is also a Fairisle Sweater pattern called  Lyngen and a gorgeous colourful throw called Farm to Skein Colorwork Throw. My favourite knit pattern might be the simple cardigan with the pretty lace details called digitalis by Amy Christoffers.


Ula Tee                                                          Lyngen


Farm to Skein Colorwork Throw         Digitalis
photos courtesy of @makingzine

There are more patterns. Come by and have a gander.  While you are here be sure to take in two more additions to The Knit Cafe’s stacks.
Grainline Studio and Madder got together to collaborate on a sewing and knitting pattern duo. Grainline contributed a tunic pattern and Madder a cardigan. It’s called Uniform and there is a version sized for adults and one for kids too. We have several copies of each but they are only available in-store.

Craftily yours
Kristin

 

 

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Quince and Co Linen is at The Knit Cafe

Oh happy day! Lets start planning our summer wardrobe. I can’t think of a better day than this with an April ice storm raging outside. I’ve got that summer feeling. How about you?

I have long admired this yarn from afar. It will be no surprise to you to hear then that I am exceedingly pleased that it has finally made it’s way to The Knit Café. Linen is my favourite plant fibre. It feels so cool next to the skin. It hangs beautifully and oh the gentle sheen! Linen somehow manages to be knit into garments that have both structure and drape. It turns out Flax is not just a superfood it is also a superfibre!
Quince and Co has two 100% linen yarns. Above is a pic of Sparrow. It’s the fingering weight linen.

This is Kestrel ↑ . It’s aran weight.  A thick linen yarn  is super-unusual. Quince and Co makes this work by constructing a yarn with a chainette/ribbon treatment. Now knitters who want to give linen a try but don’t like to knit with super fine yarns can give it a go.

One of the best things about Quince and Co is that they create gorgeous patterns for their yarn. I encourage you to check out their whole catalogue HERE
There are many lovely knittables for the Sparrow yarn. For example above is a pic of the Bolan pattern (left) and the Perkin’s Cove pattern (right).
Find more patterns for Sparrow HERE

Here are two designs for the Kestrel yarn. The one on the left is called Deschain and the one on the right is from Quince and Co’s  new pattern collection it is called Gully.
Find more patterns for Kestrel HERE

Some of your other favourite knitwear designers have made awesome things from Quince and Co linen. On the left is a pic of Linho by Joji Locatelli. On the left is the Ula Tee by Isabell Kraemer. It’s a new pattern from Making Magazine 5. Which is right now on it’s way to The Knit Café. Hooray!

Craftily yours
Kristin

PS. Did I mention the Quince and Co linen is organic? It is!

 

Show and Tell from Yarn Club!

Yarn Club 2018 is now taking new members! The Knit Café is really excited about the upcoming year of new projects and fabulous yarns to go with them, but I get even more excited when I look back at Yarn Club projects from years past. I’d love to share some of these lovelies with you, right here, right now.

Curious
It’s a monkey stuffie made from sock yarn! In this case it was delightful self-striping yarn from Turtlepurl. The Knit Café  used the inspiration of the Curious George books to develop the colour with the hand dyers at Turtlepurl. Yarn Club Members who choose the “Make Mine Custom” option received this one-of-a kind colour way made just for them and their Yarn Club project.

Bonnie Bandit
It’s shown here in two colour-ways! The one on the Judy was the Custom Colour and the other is a pic of the colours we chose for yarn club member Edie Kim. Edie has a “Picked Just For Me” subscription to yarn club, and we know she loves neutrals and blush pinks! The Bonnie Bandit is a cowl with a bandana front that sits snuggly on the neck. It is made from a trio of three different colours. The colours for this project were provided by Hedgehog Fibre! Hedgehog Fibre is an amazing yarn dyeing company who reside all the way in Ireland.

Sweet Sock
We wanted to create an everyday sock pattern that was accessible for those who had not knit socks before but also cute enough to be enjoyed by practised sock knitters. Here is what we came up with; a ribbed sock with a contrasting colour toe. We were inspired by the colour we created with the talented Julie Asselin called “Honey Bunny” to add the texture on the heel which resembles honeycomb. The Sweet Sock Yarn Club Package came with both the colours for the contrasting toe.  These colours also came from the yarn-pallet of Julie Asselin who has her studio in Quebec.

There’s No Place Like Home
This shawlette pattern was created to accompany this gorgeous single ply fingering weight merino we received from Lichen and Lace; one of our favourite hand dyers! Lichen and Lace created this beautiful, jewel-like colour we called “Emerald City” for Custom Members.

Starry Night Chapeau
This yarn colour was one of our most favourites ever! It’s from Riverside Studio who is another Quebecoise artist. The yarn colour she developed with us is called “Firefly”, a beautiful indigo blue with flecks of copper. We had her dye it on a soft worsted weight merino so we could make a toque. The hat is sized for babies to adults and the pattern comes with a pompom making tutorial. There is a twisted stitch texture that circles the hat giving it extra interest and makes it more fun to knit.

Maud Sock
Zen Yarn Garden has a series of colours that were inspired by famous works of art so we decided to pick an art work we thought might make for good inspiration. It’s “White Cat” by Maud Lewis, the Nova Scotian Folk Artist. We named our sock pattern made from the beautiful painterly skeins for her. We chose the slip stitch texture on the Maud Socks to disperse the colour and prevent pooling which sometimes happens with variegated yarn. This sock pattern has an after thought heel and the pattern contains a tutorial to help you through it. The red heel yarn came from Mineville Yarn Project. Two Canadian Yarn companies come together in one cute sock project!

Polar Vortex Hat – A Gateway to Brioche Knitting
Like the name implies, this pattern was designed as a good introduction to the wonderful world of brioche knitting. There are pictures to follow right in the pattern for those who are new to this technique. This was our December project from this past year. It makes a great gift as it is knit with FAT yarn. It’s Bulky 80/20 from Lichen and Lace. They made this gorgeous Cranberry colour for our Custom Members but all her colours looked just stunning knit into this hat pattern.
Yarn Club projects come with extra treats. This project came with a cute “made with love” ultra suede tag to sew on the brim of the hat.

Branching Out
Ontario hand dyer Yarn Indulgences contributed this decadent yarn for this mitten project. It’s a blend of Merino and Nylon and Cashmere so it is silky soft. We knit this luscious yarn into cabled mitts. This pattern includes a tutorial that shows a knitter how to make cables without the aid of a cable needle. Oh the freedom of leaving your cable needle at home! Amazing!

A Little Confetti
This Yarn Club Package came with seven different colours of Koigu yarn. I bet that was a delight to open. Koigu is one of my personal favourite yarns. They are one of Canada’s most long standing hand dyeing companies. Koigu makes a super squishy merino yarn that comes in a zillion colours. You can’t just pick one, so we didn’t, we picked lots. This mitten blends two different colours in each section with an easy slip stitch technique. This method makes a dense knit that is very cozy. The pattern explains how you can create a fleece liner to add to your mitts to make them excellent hand warmers. This yarn club package came with the fleece to make the liners.

We are currently working on our last knitting pattern for Yarn Club 2017. The yarn is gorgeous for this upcoming giftie!!! I will be sure to post about it when we have it finished.

If you would like to find out more about The Knit Cafe’s Yarn Club and become a member of the 2018 club read all about it HERE

Craftily yours
Kristin

Updates for Lichen and Lace

With our recent shipment of Lichen and Lace now happily settled into the shop we have also updated our webshop with the new colours!

So many gorgeous skeins to choose from including some newly added colours to the Lichen and Lace line. Welcome colours Coral and Sugar Plum to The Knit Café. Nice to meet you!

Have you seen the latest edition of Amirisu Magazine? If you are like me you are smitten with the Lumens scarf pattern which features Lichen and Lace 80/20 in two colours which are now in stock at The Knit Café.

Soot and Silver Fox are the colours in question. Two beautiful neutrals.

Check out all the Lichen and Lace 80/20 colours right HERE

Craftily yours
Kristin

Start making your Sweater Plans

Brooklyn Tweed has a new collection!

It’s called Winter 2018 and it’s fantastic!

You could make this ↑.
Kiragami – Knit with Arbor

Or this ↑.
Belfast – knit with Shelter

Or this ↑.
Nolan – knit with Arbor

Or this ↑.
Etna – knit with Vale

Or this ↑.
Colburn – knit with Loft

Or this ↑.
Freja – knit with Quarry

Or this ↑.
Geiger – knit with Arbor

Or this ↑.
Peaks
– knit with Shelter

There are also some fantastic accessories in this collection. Check out all the patterns in the Winter 2018 collection HERE, and have a look at The Knit Cafe’s selection of Brooklyn Tweed Yarns HERE. We have sweater quantities of most colours and more coming. Write us or call if  you have questions about our quantities in stock.
The Knit Café has free shipping for orders in Canada over $110, and you can pick up in store yarns you order online too!

Have fun with your sweater dreaming
Craftily yours
Kristin

What to knit with less than one week till Christmas

It’s true that time is running out but you may still have time to make a few more hand made gifts. Plan right! Choose projects that are small or are made with oversized yarns and the work will go fast!

The Knit Café has just released our latest knitting pattern. This toque can be made in an evening if you are an expert, a few evenings if you are not. We call it Polar Vortex Toque – A Gateway to Brioche Knitting. This is a warm hat made with a bulky yarn.  Our version is so pretty because it is knit with the very lovely hand dyed bulky merino from Lichen and Lace.  The variation in the colour looks great with the squishy brioche stitches.
If you have never tried to knit a brioche project before then this is a good one to try first. The bulky yarn means your stitches are easier to identify and it is only one colour so that makes it a bit easier. In addition our pattern includes some helpful photos that explain the brioche technique.

Look at these Lichen and Lace Bulky skeins! We don’t have all these colours left but we still have a great selection. It takes just one skein to make an adult medium Polar Vortex Toque, a large with dip into a second skein.

Make the Martin Scarf. We love this neck warmer, it is so fun to wear, with its triangular shape and long ties. You can make it really fast because it is knit with a Super Bulky yarn. We especially like to make it with Burly Spun by Brown Sheep. Check out the pattern right HERE

The Knit 101 Headband project is a really fast knit. Choose a bulky yarn or double up your Aran weight yarn to a bulky gauge. That is what we did with the version pictured above. Best of all this pattern is free to try from The Knit Cafe’s Blog right HERE.

Craftily yours
Kristin

Gifts For New Knitters!

Do you know someone who has just picked up knitting and is feeling the joy? Here are some things that will spur them on to even greater heights of craft-mania! Also, some gift ideas for the knit-curious with no experience as of yet.

Gizmos and bobbles, all of them useful!
1. Some call it a corker, others a French knitter. Either way it is a basic tool to make a knitted string and often the first knitting experience for a tiny tot (not yet needle age). $11
2. Needle Keepers for double pointed needles.  This doo-hicky keeps the double pointed needles organized whether you have a project on them or not. They come in two sizes, one for short, and one for long double pointed needles. $7.75
3. A knitting needle gauge to measure your needles when you’re just not sure what size they are. $7.50
4. Eucalan is for washing woollies. No rinse, so half the work! Shown here is a trial size 100ml for $5, also available in 500ml for $13. Different scents and unscented are available.
5. “made with love” labels that you can sew on to all your hand made gifts. They are made in Canada from ultra suede and come in two colours. $1.75 each
6. Buttons by Katrinkles. Hand made from bamboo. Elegant round buttons, set of 4 for $10.25.
7.  Hedgehog shaped buttons by Katrinkles, 4 buttons for $15. 50
Other styles of buttons are available. Come and see!

KNIT KITS for Beginners
and Absolute Beginners

The Knit Café has put together a bunch of bundles complete with pattern and yarn and all the fixins. Here are some geared to new knitters!

Knit Critter Knit Kit
This is a project for knitters who know how to knit and purl, but no other experience is necessary. Instructions encourage the knitter to make up their own knit critter by changing up ears and tails and other embellishments, so you can make the bunny or the bear (shown) or any critter your imagination can conceive.
Kit Contains: 2 colours of Berroco Vintage of your choosing, a Knit Critter Pattern, a set of safety eyes, and polyfil for stuffing for $25 , add needles $38


First Scarf Knit Kit
This is an absolute beginner kit. If you are giving this package to a brand new knitter you can add on The Knit Cafe’s “Knitter’s Crash Course” booklet which describes the basic stitches involved.  this is an easy, plain stitch scarf with a colour-mix-bundle for making the fringe. The pattern includes instructions for adding on the fringe.
Kit Contains: 2 skeins Berroco Vinatge Chunky, you choose the colour,  a bundle of fringe colours, different assortments are available, a First Scarf Pattern, and a Knitter’s Crash Course booklet (optional) for $28 , add on needles for $41


Dawson City Toque Knit Kit
This hat pattern was designed with absolute beginners in mind. It is knit flat and then seamed up with a really chunky yarn which is knit double for a really warm hat. Pattern includes instructions on how to make the cute pompom too!
Kit Contains: One skein Brown Sheep Burly Spun yarn, you choose the colour, and the Dawson City Toque Pattern, and a Knitter’s Crash Course Booklet (optional) for $28 , add needles $46.50


Last Minute Cowl Knit Kit
Another one for absolute beginner knitters. No experience necessary! Really fat yarn and needles make this project go fast and makes knitting seem like a breeze.
Kit Contains: One skein Brown Sheep Burly Spun yarn you choose the colour, and the Last Minute Cowl Pattern, and a Knitter’s Crash Course Booklet (optional) for $28 , add needles $43


Knit 101 Headband Knit Kit
Another one for newbies! This project is knit flat with just knit stitches and then seamed up. There is a twist added to the middle of the headband to make the pretty shape but the pattern explains how to do this and includes pictures you can follow along with.
Kit Contains: One ball of Andes by Drops  you choose the colour, A Knit 101 Headband Pattern, a double pointed needle so as to make the twist, and  a Knitter’s Crash Course Booklet (optional) for $10 , add needles $25


Easy Peasy Arm Warmer Knit Kit
Absolute Beginners can make these too! Knit back and forth with plain knit and then seamed up and voila!- arm warmers. It’s as easy as a scarf. We’ve paired this project with beautiful hand dyed yarn from Lichen and Lace to make it really special but there are other options- just ask!
Kit Contains: One skein Lichen and Lace Worsted Merino, pattern for Easy Peasy Arm Warmers, and a Knitter’s Crash Course Booklet (optional) for $28 , add needles $41


Magical Striped Scarf Knit Kit
This one is for new knitters who have learned both the knit and the purl stitch already. Once you know these basic stitches this scarf should be simple to make. The yarn does all the work. Two different colours of a colour-changing yarn is striped and magically a myriad of colours appear. This is a really fun project!
Kit Contains: two balls Noro Kureopatora in colours of your choice, and a Magical Striped Scarf Pattern for $40 , add needles $53

If you would like to make your Knit Kit really special get it packed up in a hand printed project bag from Kate Austin Designs.  Shown here: draw string bag $20 and tote $40

New Knitters also need yarn. Make it chunky please! For a splurge try this yarn which is brand new in the shop. It is Tundra from The Fibre Company; a decadent blend of merino, alpaca, and silk; so very soft and cozy! It would make a gorgeous hat. If you know someone who has attended The Knit Cafe’s Knit 101 Class this yarn will work perfectly for the hat project we make in that class. One skein will do it – $32 each.

If none of that seems quite right, let the fledgling knitter pick out their own supplies and get a Knit Café Gift Certificate!

Craftily yours
Kristin