2nd (Annual???) Cloud 9 Knitting Retreat

We’re working furiously to get all of the details pinned down for our 2nd Cloud 9 Knitting Retreat! We’re happy to announce that Kate Atherley and Keith Leonard have agreed to come and teach for us.

 

Kate Atherley is the technical editor for Knitty.com and is a seasoned designer and teacher of all things knitterly. Known for her attention to detail in her patterns and her classes, she regularly teaches at stores and events across North America, including Interweave YarnFest and Vogue Knitting Live. Her work has appeared in many books and magazines.

Keith Leonard gained a love for knitting at the age of eleven when he joined a lunchtime knitting program in his hometown of Haworth, New York. After working at four yarn stores, he realized that there was no specialized service for knitwear finishing and took the initiative to start his own professional finishing service, Knits All Done. He now travels the country teaching classes while selling his custom Zen Yarn Garden yarns and colors and Soulwool from Israel (and, yes, we will have a trunk show of his yarns at Cloud 9).

Kate and Keith will both teach four classes at Cloud 9, plus Kate will give us her The Good, The Bad, The Ugly presentation as a kick-off on Friday evening. Here is the planned schedule for 2019.

Schedule

We hope to have the details ironed out within the next week. Make sure you are one of the first to be able to sign up! Just say you want to be on Cloud 9 Interest List in the comments below (include your email address or phone number), and we’ll let you know when registration is available. People on the interest list will get a few days to sign up before the rest of the world!

 

Cloud 9 Knitting Retreat Coming Together

This summer, we are re-launching our Cloud 9 retreat – this time as a knitting only event. What is a knitting retreat? Well, for us it’s bringing together a couple of national instructors, Patty Lyons and Melissa Leapman,

for a weekend of classes at a location outside of our store, where knitters can learn, socialize, relax, and above all have fun!

The Cloud 9 Knitting Retreat will be held July 13-15. We’re still finalizing our class selections and the location, but here’s a run down of what we are hoping to do:

Schedule

We’re planning on having everything finalized and ready for registrations by March 25, so keep your eyes on our Facebook page and our newsletter. Or, if you would like us to call you to let you know when it’s all ready to go, email Laura and ask to be put on our interest list.

Year of the Sweater: 4th Quarter

We’re excited to announce our 4th Quarter inspiration sweaters. These are the sweaters that each of us in the Yarn Department at 3 Kittens wish we could make this fall if we could only find the time!

Here you go –

Antler Cardigan

by Tin Can Knits

Cecilia’s pick is sized from infants to 4XL adults. The Antler Cardigan is truly a sweater for everyone!

Suggested Yarn: Rowan Pure Wool SW Worsted (219 yds/25gr; 100% Wool): 2-9 balls

Alternative Yarn: Spud & Chloe Sweater (160 yds/100gr; 55% SW Wool, 45% Organic Cotton): 2-12 skeins

Join our Antler Cardigan Knit-A-Long this fall!

 

Barnard

by Lori Versaci

Shelley likes Barnard because it will be easy to wear for all sizes.

Suggested Yarn: The Fibre Co Cumbria (236 yds/100gr; 90% Wool, 10% Mohair): 5 (6, 6, 7) (7, 8, 8) skeins

Alternative Yarn: Berroco Ultra Alpaca (215 yds/100gr; 50% Super Fine Alpaca, 50% Peruvian Wool): 5 (6, 7, 7) (8, 8, 9) skeins

 

Brickyard

by Elizabeth Doherty

Casual and comfortable, Brickyard  is Jane’s favorite.

Suggested Yarn: Rowan Pure Wool SW DK (137 yds/50gr; 100% Wool): 9 (10, 11, 12, 13, 15, 16, 17, 18, 20) balls

Alternative Yarn: The Fibre Co Luma (137 yds/50gr; 50% Wool, 25% Cotton, 15% Linen, 10% Silk): 9 (10, 11, 12, 13, 15, 16, 17, 18, 20) skeins

 

Gwyneth

by Amy Miller

Cables and a classic fit make Gwyneth Shayne’s pick for fall/winter.

Suggested Yarn: Swans Island All American Sport (185 yds/40gr; 100% Rambouillet Wool): 8 (9, 9, 10, 10) (11, 12, 12, 13) skeins

Alternative Yarn: Outlaw Bohemia Sport (183 yds/50gr; 45% Polwarth Wool, 45% Alpaca, 10% Possum): 8 (9, 9, 10, 10) (11, 12, 12, 13) balls

Koto

by Olga Buraya-Kefelian

Koto is on-trend with it’s hi-lo hemline – right up Laura’s alley!

Suggested Yarn: Noro Silk Garden Solo (109 yds/50gr; 45% Silk, 45% Kid Mohair, 10% Lambs Wool): 12 (12, 13, 13, 14, 15) skeins

Alternative Yarn: Sugar Bush Bold (190 yds/100gr; 100% SW Merino Wool): 7 (7, 8, 8, 8, 9) balls

 

Tangled Up in Gray

by Sloan Rosenthal

Elizabeth thinks the Tangled Up in Gray pullover would look great with jeans and boots.

Suggested Yarn: Rowan Hemp Tweed (104 yds/50gr; 75% Wool, 25% Hemp): 11-16 balls

Alternative Yarn: Cascade 220 (220 yds/100gr; 100% Wool): 6-8 skeins

 

What do you think of our choices? If you’d like to participate in a Knit-A-Long for any of them this fall/winter, leave a comment, and we’ll add you to the interest list. As soon as we get a few eager beavers for any sweater, we’ll put it on the calendar.

Happy Sweater Knitting!

Aalto KAL: Part 4, What Now?

According to the calendar, the Aalto KAL is over. However, I don’t think anyone is finished with their poncho yet. Am I right? I know I’m not! I haven’t even finished with the first half!! And Mary Lou who has been attending the in-person KAL hasn’t either. We took a pic yesterday of our progress.

IMG_2886

So, first of all, we are going to extend the knit-a-long. If you can or want to join us in the store, we will be meeting Saturdays, July 29 and August 12, from 2-4pm. That’s four more weeks. Not sure if that will be enough, but we will assess when we get there. I’m hoping to get to the shoulder shaping in the next few days, and I will do another post on the short rows then.

What we noticed, though, when we took the photo is that my fabric (the orange) is much more open than Mary Lou’s fabric (the blue). It’s hard to tell in the above photo, but here’s a close up.

IMG_2885

We decided we had better check our gauges again. Oops! Neither of us is on gauge! I am back to 19 sts/4″ and Mary Lou is at 25 sts/4″! I am not terribly concerned about mine. I know I can stretch my finished piece vertically and gravity will do the rest. I may never achieve that perfect 22 sts/4″, but it will be close enough (remember my comment about being tall?). Mary Lou is also not going to worry about it. She is short and was concerned about the length of the poncho down her arms. That is not going to be an issue at all now. And, when she held up the piece to her body, it was obvious that the circumference will be big enough to accommodate her torso, so that’s not a concern. She can also stretch her poncho horizontally when she blocks it if she decides she needs more room in the torso.

This is one of the beauties of this garment – you don’t have to be spot on with your gauge to still have a great poncho.

How are things going for you?

~ Laura

Aalto KAL: Part 3, Adding a New Ball of Yarn

First of all, sorry for the delay in getting this blog post done (and thank you, Judy, for reminding me to do it!). I have been under a deadline to get a shawl design wrapped up for our upcoming Progressive East End Project, and I haven’t even gotten to my 2nd ball of yarn for Aalto yet. Sigh…

However, Mary Lou was here knitting with me at last Saturday’s in-store knit-a-long, and she had to attach a new ball of Twig. Normally, when I add another ball of yarn or a new color to my knitting, I knit in the new strand and the old strand as I’m knitting like this:

But, because of the airy, open nature of this fabric, this method won’t work – it would show through as a line on the right side of the fabric.

So, the best way to add your next yarn is to knit several stitches (I would do 8-10 sts) while holding both the old and new yarn together. I suggested to Mary Lou that she should do this at the beginning of the row, because even if it was a bit noticeable, having it at the edge of the fabric would mean that most people would never see it. However, Mary Lou ran out of yarn suddenly in the middle of the row, so she decided to add her new yarn there (despite my dire warnings!). I believe she knit 10 stitches with both the new and old yarn held together, then she dropped the old yarn and kept knitting with the new one. After knitting with the new one for several rows, here’s what it looks like:

The join is in the middle of the row right under where Mary Lou’s nose ends. Can you see it? Neither can I. So, go ahead, change yarns in the middle of the row!

Bonus tip: This type of join is also ideal when working with cotton yarns. My favored knitting in method is terrible for cottons – you can always see the join from the right side. Knitting several stitches with the old and new yarns held together, surprisingly, is not nearly as noticeable. For a tighter fabric, I may only do a few stitches , but for open fabrics, where the stitches are looser, I like to do 8-10 stitches.

~ Laura

Disco Ball Shawl Extras

If you came to 3 Kittens during the Minnesota Yarn Shop Hop 2017, you probably picked up a copy of our Disco Ball Shawl pattern. Unfortunately, there just wasn’t enough room on the printed pattern to incorporate several useful tips, so we’ve put some extras in this post to help you finish your shawl successfully.

Schematic

Disco Ball Schematic

 

 

This is a rough drawing of the shawl. The actual shawl’s hypotenuse (the longest edge) is actually curved as is the bottom edge.

 

 

 

Section 1 – Color Sequence

The following chart is a representation of how the color sequencing occurs in Section 1 of the shawl. Some people (like me!) are more visual and like charts and diagrams. This is for you!

Disco Ball Color Sequence

(The red numbers in the # of sts columns correspond to the stitch counts in the written pattern.)

Finding the Stitch in the Row Below for Make Bobble Instructions

My test knitter didn’t know exactly what I meant by “st from the row below at the base of the bobble”, so we thought a series of pictures might help you!

Locating the Stitch Below the Bobble

To Shorten the Shawl

This is a large shawl. If you would like to shorten it, I suggest removing the last stripe sequence.

I hope all of this helps you make the Disco Shawl!

~ Laura

Another Birthday Wish!

patty-lyons-2016

From guest blogger Patty Lyons:

I first met Laura at an industry event several years ago. When she asked me to come teach at 3 Kittens Needle Arts, I was excited. I had heard great things about the shop from other knitting teachers and I was looking forward to seeing it for myself.

When I found out it was 3 Kitten’s 10th anniversary, I was not surprised. Few shops make it to that landmark, and when I visited the shop I understood why 3 Kittens is in that handful of stores that make it to 10 (and will make it to 20!). 

When I first walked in the shop early on a Friday afternoon, it was a buzz of activity. There was a woman in the back picking out colors for a new canvas, a few women browsing the yarn, a woman picking up her finished needlepoint pillow (there was a good deal of oohing and aahing over the beautiful birds on the pillow), and another woman rushing in to get a gift asking the nearly unanswerable question, “What do teenage girls like?”

The shop is not only stocked with beautiful yarns, many of which I had never seen (and I’ve seen a LOT of yarn), but more importantly, it’s staffed by funny, enthusiastic and knowledgeable staff. 

Congrats to 3 Kittens on your 10-year anniversary . . . I have a feeling this shop will be around for a long time to come!

~ Patty Lyons