Tag Archives: handmade

Handmade Holidays

The Christmas Countdown is on! For crafters who enjoy making handmade gifts for loved ones, this can be a busy time of year. Quite often, we have the best of intentions to start our holiday crafting early, but sometimes, a last-minute craft crunch simply can’t be avoided!

Let the Woolery come to the rescue this year! We have plenty of thoughtful gift ideas which are quick to knit, crochet, and weave to keep everyone on your list happy!

Gifts to Knit

rikkeThe popular Rikke Hat by Sarah Young is a simple, unisex beanie that knits up quick in DK weight yarn. It’s available for free here on Ravelry!

leafwashclothWashcloths are certainly useful gifts, but they aren’t always fun to knit again and again. Megan Goodacre’s Leafy Washcloth is a fun, free pattern you’ll enjoy making each time! Click here for the free pattern on the Tricksy Knitter blog.

Image © Jane Richmond

Image © Jane Richmond

A chunky-weight cowl will fly off the needles, and Jane Richmond’s Marian is a mock-mobius which can be worn in a variety of ways. This design would look fabulous knit up in handspun yarn, too! It’s available for free here on Ravelry.

Gifts to Crochet

SONY DSCThe Triangle Christmas Tree ornaments by Sarah Freeman are a cinch to make! Based on the traditional granny square motif, they will stitch up quickly and are great for detashing. Click here for links to the free pattern and video tutorial on the Ravelry pattern page.

urbanslouchIt’s always good to have a few hats on hand for last-minute gift emergencies, and this unisex design is a great choice which is easy to customize. The Urban Slouchy Beanie is available for free here on the Little Things Blogged blog.

stripyStripy Mitts by Sandra Paul are a colorful gift to make for the style maven on your list! This pattern is available for free and is a great way to use up leftover yarns in your stash, too.

Gifts to Weave
When it comes to speedy weaving , Schacht’s portable Zoom Loom is bar none. We have plenty of free patterns (courtesy of Schacht) to put those woven squares to work this year – click here to view them all! Below are a few of our favorite projects for woven tree ornaments which use just 1 or 2 Zoom Loom squares – click each image below to view pattern instructions!

Evergreen Dream

Evergreen Dream

Santa Sock

Santa Sock

Snow Bird

Snow Bird

To add a festive touch, why not embellish your ornaments with sequins, beads, or needle-felted fiber designs? Let your creativity flow as you put your own unique touches on your Zoom Loom projects!

2014 Fiber Toys of Christmas

FT14BANNER

Our annual holiday promotion, the 12 Fiber Toys of Christmas, is in full swing! Each Friday, we feature a favorite fiber toy with a special deal and a chance to win that particular toy (tool). Weekly specials and giveaways will be posted on our Facebook pageTwitter feed, and it will also be included in our newsletter.

These are weekly specials which expire every Friday (when the new one starts), so be sure to check the links above so you don’t miss out!

All the best,

Chris, Nancy, and the entire Woolery team

 

Wee Weaving + Artisan Spotlight: Meet Norman Veech

Summer is winding down and before you know it, the kids will be heading back to school. Now is the perfect time to master the art of small weaving projects you can take on-the-go! Schacht has several fun projects using woven squares created on their Zoom Loom:

ZOOMprojects

Pincushions, Infinity Scarf and Slipper patterns are all available for free on the Schacht website.

Artisan Spotlight: Meet Norman Veech

normanveach Norman Veech is a local prolific rug weaver who brought us this handwoven Alpaca rug a few months ago. We’re going to frame it for the shop!

Norman is a kind and compassionate man who has been coming in our shop since we moved it to Kentucky. He took up weaving about 6-7 years ago when he needed something to do while going through chemotherapy treatments. His wife taught him how to weave on a little loom purchased at a flea market, and he liked it so much that he has continued to weave ever since!

Since then, he has traded up to using floor looms to create placemats, table runners and blankets in addition to his favorite project, rugs. Norman isn’t focused on production weaving, but rather weaves for the enjoyment and relaxation the craft provides. Occasionally, he can be found selling his rugs at nearby flea markets and craft festivals such as the Finchville Fall Festival next month.

Many thanks to Norman for allowing us to share his story with our blog readers this month!

All the best,

Chris, Nancy, and the entire Woolery team

We’re here to help you get hooked!

One of the hardest parts about trying out a new craft is making sure you have everything you need to get started; of course, having all of the supplies you need on hand will make learning something new much less frustrating! Many of our customers are curious to try rug hooking, so we’ve not only assembled a list of supplies you’ll need to get started (see below), we’ve created a short video as part of our “Ask the Woolery” series on YouTube!

You can watch the video above to get an overview of several techniques and tools used to create beautiful hooked rugs. From beginner to advanced, there is a rug hooking project for everyone – and after watching this video, you’ll have a better idea of which type of technique is right for you!

Ready to get started? Make sure you have:
Backing material such as Scottish Burlap (click here to see more backing options in our YouTube video):

backings

L-R: Scottish Burlap, Monk’s Cloth, and Linen.

Strips of cloth, yarn, or lengths of ribbon (left) and a frame or hoop to hold your work (right):

rugstripsandframe

One or more rug hooks:

rughooks

How-To Books:

rugbooks

Before you know it, you’ll be hooked on rug hooking!

All the best,

Chris, Nancy, and the entire Woolery team

Simple Ways to Welcome Spring + Upcoming Events

Spring is Just Around The Corner!

We’ve got spring fever at The Woolery! Hop over to Pinterest to see what’s been inspiring us this season on our new Welcome Spring inspiration board. There are plenty of ways you can spruce up your home decor with simple projects to knit, weave, felt or hook, ranging from practical projects to whimsical accents. Bright colors and lightweight, easy-care yarns such as cotton, bamboo or linen are perfect choices for your next ‘home improvement’ project. Below are just a few ideas that will give you a bright outlook for spring!

To view all of these projects (and more!), click here to visit our 'Welcome Spring' inspiration board on Pinterest!

To view all of these projects (and more!), click here to visit our ‘Welcome Spring’ inspiration board on Pinterest!

Upcoming Fiber Events

We’ve got plenty of exciting classes and workshops happening at The Woolery in 2013, but now we’ll be keeping you updated about the latest fiber events happening throughout the country (and beyond!) with our new Upcoming Festivals page, too! Though The Woolery will not have a booth at the festivals listed,  we are providing this information as a service to the Fiber Arts Community in our efforts to support guilds, festivals and the fiber arts people who work so hard to keep crafting alive for future generations.

If you have an upcoming festival to promote, let us know! Simply email webmaster@woolery.com with the dates, location, a short description, image or logo along with a link to your website to be included on our page. There is no charge for this service; click here for more information!

All the best,

Chris, Nancy, and the entire Woolery team

Presentation is Everything: Handmade Touches For Gifts

As the holiday countdown winds down, why not put a few handmade finishing touches on your gifts this year? If you ran out of time to make gifts for everyone on your list, adding a small handmade flourish using a few of our ideas below will still show the recipient how much you care!

PomPomPompons instead of bows: a great way to destash yarn, plus they can also be used as an ornament for your tree!

yarnwrap Replace ribbon with yarn to create striking stripes or a woven effect.

embellishments Decorate packages with small embellishments you can needle felt, knit or crochet such as miniature wreaths, holly, snowflakes, or anything else you can dream up!

giftbagsEco-Friendly Gift Wrap: Knit or crochet gift bags add a personal touch to store-bought gifts!

All of these projects (and more!) can be found via our “Presentation is Everything” Pinterest board! Join Us for the 12 Fiber Toys of Christmas It’s Toy Season! This Friday, we’ll be featuring a new favorite fiber toy with a special deal and a chance to win that particular toy (tool) – click here for more details! Chris, Nancy, and the entire Woolery team!

Caring For Your Hand-Made Treasures

We are often asked how to best preserve the handmade items our customers have created. At The Woolery, we believe that each item you’ve lovingly crafted deserves the finest care – ordinary dish soap simply won’t do! We recommend wool washes that are formulated especially to care for these delicate items. Not only will your finished projects last longer, but you’ll be surprised at how easy and inexpensive it is to properly care for them!

When selecting a wool wash, be sure to look for ingredients that condition and soften fibers naturally – a good example is the lanolin-enriched formula from Eucalan. Harsh additives and dyes (such as you would find in Woolite) damage fibers, so you’ll want a formula that is free of phosphates, ammonia, and other chemicals, too. Finally, a no-rinse formula will not only save water, it will also save wear and tear on your handmade treasures!

We prefer the biodegradable, earth-friendly formulas from both Eucalan and Unicorn Fibre Wash. Each of these wool washes softens fibers, prevents static, and features other benefits such as naturally antibacterial essential oils, all in a no-rinse formula. In the video below, Deb Robson (coauthor of The Fleece and Fiber Sourcebook) explains the benefits of using a dedicated wool wash to care for breed-specific wools:

Now that you know why proper care is important, we’ll show you how to care for your finished projects! You can watch the short video tutorial from Eucalan below, or follow these simple instructions:

1. Fill a small basin with tepid water and add the recommended amount of your preferred wool wash.
2. Place the item into the water, gently squeezing with your hands a few times to make sure the soap and water is soaked through.
3. Allow garment to sit for about 30 minutes, then remove garment and remove excess water by squeezing gently.
4. Lay a dry towel on the floor and place the garment on top of it, then roll it up to remove excess moisture.
5. Lay item on flat surface to dry.

Join Us for the 12 Fiber Toys of Christmas
It’s Toy Season! This Friday, we’ll be featuring a new favorite fiber toy with a special deal and a chance to win that particular toy (tool) – click here for more details!

Chris, Nancy, and the entire Woolery team!