Tuesday, 13 June 2017

The Knit Show

We are hugely proud to announce that we have become a key backer for an exciting crowd funding project.  The Knit Show is the brainchild of Vickie Howell who has pulled together a team of industry heavy weights to bring a knit and crochet show like no other to a global audience on YouTube.

Each episode will feature Industry
experts and superstar guests, knitting & crochet tips and techniques and modern, totally make-able, high quality projects in a range of levels as well as product and yarn reviews to help knitters gain more experience and skill.

If Vickie Howell’s name is familiar you have probably seen one of her previous shows such as “Knitty Gritty” or “Knitting Daily with Vickie Howell”, or read one of her books including Pop Goes Crochet, Step It Up Knits or Finger Knitting For Fun. She is well-known for her incredible enthusiasm and the fantastic way she shares her skills in an easy to understand and approachable way.

We caught up with Vickie and she filled us in with some interesting background: “The idea for The Knit Show came about as a result of years of requests from fans of other programs I’ve hosted for a show that was truly for stitchers. I want to provide high quality content that’s easily accessible to an international audience, whilst speaking to the modern, digital world. We aim to inspire, educate and entertain crafty types, encourage them to fit creativity into their lives, even if it’s just one stitch at a time”, she explains.  “We decided to go for crowd funding so that we could make our first series free and we are incredibly grateful to everyone that has contributed, especially KnitPro.”

KnitPro is the backer that brought the show’s Kickstarter campaign to their financial goal, helping the project become fully funded.: “We are thrilled to be involved with The Knit Show and believe it is important for us as a company to fund these initiatives,” says Shirish Jain, Executive Vice President of KnitPro.

The Knit Show is the first series of its kind in our industry and is a ground-breaking achievement. We hope it will show the way for many more ventures where passionate knitters get a chance to directly fund such projects. Vickie’s infectious enthusiasm is sure to make the programmes a big hit.”

Filming will take place over the summer and the show launches in October 2017 on YouTube.

Tuesday, 30 May 2017

The Knitting & Crochet Guild – Passing on the Passion

You may well have met members of the Knitting &Crochet Guild (KCG) at one of the many yarn and craft shows across the UK where they patiently pass on their skills, but we wanted to tell you a bit more about them, especially since we have recently become their first corporate sponsor.

The main aims of the KCG are
·      to showcase their historic collection of knitted and crocheted items, thousands of patterns, and artefacts,
·      to help knitters and crocheters everywhere to learn more about the traditions and techniques of their crafts so that they can develop their skills,
·      and to inspire their members to try new ways of knitting and crochet.
Put simply, they are a unique resource and a gateway to the heritage of knitting and crochet, which is why we are so passionate about helping them.

We have been lucky enough to visit their amazing collection, housed in a warehouse in Yorkshire.  The building itself may not look like much but the racks of plain brown boxes hide a wealth of amazing artefacts dating right back to 1826.  

They have original first issues of Woman’s Weekly, acres of pattern leaflets, a petticoat crocheted by Queen Mary, incredible examples of Bohus garments, outrageous 1960s crochet, super fine Irish lace crochet, and the biggest collection of knitting needles and crochet hooks we have ever seen. A team of dedicated volunteers help to catalogue and care for these historic examples of our craft.

The items from the collection do go out on a trunk show but if you join the KCG, then you can visit the collection in person, where the Guild’s expert archivists will guide you through some of the highlights.

The Knitting & Crochet Guild will be celebrating its 40th year in 2018 so there couldn’t be a better time to join.  You can find details here.

Tuesday, 25 April 2017

Crafting with Kids

Keeping your kids entertained during the holidays and the many Bank holidays can seem a bit of a tall order. We know how hard it is to find an activity that doesn’t cost the earth or drags them away from their technology.

Children can find themselves completely absorbed in crafting with the right inspiration, and knitting and crochet have positive effects way beyond the project they are working on.  We hear that knitting and crochet can help with maths and technology as you can read over on this
blog post.

To help you get your children or grandchildren started we have uncovered a few books that you might find useful.

Why not get them used to working with yarn with Creative Kids Complete Photo Guide to Braiding and Knotting by Catherine Woram.  Macrame has been making a bit of a comeback over the last couple of years.  No need to worry that it’s all plant pots and wall hangings as it was in the 1970s, this book teaches the technique of braiding, plaiting, knotting, and macrame to create lots of exciting projects which are all rated for difficulty.

The former editor of Inside Crochet, Claire Montgomerie has written a lovely book called Knitting for Children.  Suitable for ages 7–12 the book is packed with great projects as well as teaching them how to finger knit, make tassels, put together pompoms and more.  The Snake scarf is our particular favourite because it is such fun but also teaches all the basic skills they will need. Claire has run a very successful workshop for kids over recent years and has poured all her experience into the pages of this book.

Designer Lucinda Guy and illustrator Francois Hall have created a really useful book called Kids Learn to Crochet which looks fantastic and is a fun read. The book is recommended for children from the age of 6 and guides them through the basic crochet techniques such as a foundation chain and the basic crochet stitches, such as double, half treble and treble crochet before it takes them on to shaping and joining pieces together to create lots of brightly coloured projects. We loved this book so much that we are sure adults will enjoy learning from it as well.

Whatever the time of year we hope you will have some holiday fun with our book selections.