knitculture.com

Ume by Andrea Rangel

December 24th, 2014

If you’re reading this on Boxing Day, chances are you’re ready for a leisurely knitting pattern.  A pattern where you won’t feel the urge to growl “SHUT IT, I’M COUNTING”, because in all likelihood you probably still have a house full of guests or holiday dinners to attend.  Enter “Ume” by Andrea Rangel; a delightful project you can knit while mingling or lingering over coffee and the last remaining sugar cookies.*

The shawl shown here was knit by our gal Fleming. She was immediately drawn to the modern look and styling of this shawl. ” Usually I never knit things in the same color that they were modeled in, ” says Fleming, “which is probably why I bought two different dyelots . . . I was just too excited to get started!”

Fleming knit the shawl pictured here using two slightly different dyelots of Malabrigo Sock. Sock is a yummy fingering weight yarn that’s hand-dyed and made of superwash merino wool. It’s drapey, squishy and when you need to wash it you can toss it in the washer on gentle and lay flat to dry.

Since one dyelot was more peachy, and the other more of a cool rose, Fleming switched between skeins every two rows to blend the two dyelots together. The result is just stunning!

Knit from wing tip to wing tip, with a panel of garter stitch and a modern lace edging, “Ume” works up quickly (well comparatively speaking) because once you’re halfway done the rows get faster and faster to knit. It’s generous dimensions make it fun to style, and the picot edging really pops when wrapped over the garter stitch border section. Overall, an excellent choice for a post-holiday project.

Happy knitting!
Emma G.

Useful links:
Buy the “Ume” pattern here!
Check out Andrea Rangel’s blog!
Shop Malabrigo Sock!
Shop more Malabrigo yarns!

*You know the ones: misshapen, frosted liberally by a four-year-old.

 

 


Hats for Israeli Soldiers

December 17th, 2014

This winter we’re teaming up with Hats for Israeli Soldiers to send some love  in the form of simple handknit hats. And you can too!

Hats for Israeli Soldiers is spearheaded by the lovely Channah Koppel, an avid knitter and mother of an Israeli soldier. She started the organization and designed the pattern as a way to send a cozy message of love to enlisted soldiers. She now gathers hundreds and hundreds of handknit hats from all over the world, and delivers them to A Package for Home, which bundles the hats with much needed day-to-day items and delivers them to active duty Israeli soldiers, in particular the ‘Lone Soldiers’.

Hats for Israeli Soldiers

One thing many people do not know is that  the Israeli army includes young men and women from all over the world who willingly enlist to secure the safety and survival of the Jewish people. Lone Soldiers (Chayalim Bodedim) are international soldiers who do not have family in Israel, and are the ones who need the most support since they are so far from home.

The hat pattern is free, and includes instructions for knitting it flat and in the round. The pattern has been approved by the IDF, so as long as you knit to the pattern specs, you can be sure that your handiwork will get lots of love and use from an Israeli soldier.  We will be donating 100% of the proceeds from our two recommended yarn options to LIBI USA-  a fund run by a network of volunteers that directly supports Israeli soldiers. LIBI helps provide for the educational and medical needs of the soldiers of the Israel Defense Forces, and endeavors to implement projects not covered by the Israeli Army’s regular budget.

If you are interested in joining our hat drive, the steps are simple:

1) Get the pattern FREE on Ravelry: “Ribbed Watchman Cap” by Channah Koppel
2) Get the right yarn, we have two great options here.
3) Knit your hat either flat or in the round following the patterns sizing specifications.
4) Drop your finished hat (or hats!)  off at our store by January 20th.

Or, mail in your hat donations to our store:
Knit Culture Studio
8118 West 3rd Street
Los Angeles, CA 90048

If you don’t know how to knit a hat, that’s OK! We’re teaching a hat class based on the pattern so you can learn to knit a hat while working on a hat to contribute to our hat drive!

Happy knitting!
Emma G.


West 3rd Street Holiday Party

December 10th, 2014

Our neighbors on West 3rd Street are throwing one great big party tomorrow night! Come down to West 3rd Street and find discounts, snacks and drinks and entertainment at over 75 shops and restaurants! We’ll be throwing our casual, crafty holiday party at Knit Culture Studio: serving fresh donuts, lively tunes and offering 20% off select holiday yarns!

So bring your knitting and crochet projects, and come craft with us at Kitterly HQ!

See you at the party!
Emma G.


Introducing: Kitterly

November 20th, 2014

If you’ve been in our store lately you’ve probably noticed that something  has  taken over our backroom. Well, that entity is our new website – www.Kitterly.com. Kitterly has been in the works for a little over two years, but it moved in and made itself completely comfortable a couple months ago.

If it were any other ecommerce site, it probably wouldn’t demand the hours of attention and painstaking care we’ve put into it so far. But Kitterly is not just another online shop. Kitterly was designed to make shopping online for knitting and crochet projects more inspiring, intuitive and convenient. An LYS experience you can access 24 hours a day, from the comfort of your home! But in order to bring the whole LYS experience online, we had a lot of prep work to do offline.

We’re planning our projects and products very carefully. We put up a 23′ x 6′ hunk of felt and started organizing, deliberating, and hand-picking beautiful patterns that we know crafters would love to knit or crochet. This process is ongoing and every few weeks we add more. (Eep!)

Meeting on the weekends, we discussed best yarn choices for every pattern we picked as if we were going to make it ourselves. We ordered more yarn. We ordered new yarn. We’re still ordering yarn somehow. All after swatching of course, because we are knitters and we are nothing if not thorough.

If there’s one thing that makes endless swatching seem like a treat, it’s data entry. We created a million spreadsheets, and got to work. Shipping measurements, techniques used, knitting needles used, knitting needle shipping dimensions, notions used, number of pieces in that package of notions, recommended yarn, yardage amounts, yardage in each skein of yarn, color family, fiber type, bust measurements . . . any and every piece of information that would help ensure our customers get exactly what they need for their customized project had to be discussed and entered into our database.

While all of this work is going on, we’re still running our shop, giving knitting and crochet advice and overcoming the usual line-up of small business challenges. For instance, a misguided contractor brought his sledgehammer through our front wall, instead of our neighbors. Our main computer went on strike and threatened to take everything with it. We lost all the yarn product images we’d been amassing over the years(something that had been crossed off the to-do list for months!) so Elise had to re-shoot  the entire store.  All that, and the fact that Life doesn’t really care if you’re working on a nigh impossible deadline, it’s going to happen anyway.

But we’re resilient, resourceful ladies. And damnit, we’re determined to put in the work now so we can build the website we’ve been dreaming of for years.

So,  we laugh, pet the doggie, eat too much pie,  and then dig back into the work. We’re so close to launch now and cannot wait to introduce you to Kitterly.

It’s not up yet, but if you go to www.Kitterly.com you can sign-up to be among the first to know when Kitterly goes live.

ETA: Oh hey! Our Facebook page is up :D   Like Kitterly on Facebook!

Stay tuned !
Emma G.

 


Share Your Stash! – Yarn Drive for Down Town Women’s Center

October 30th, 2014

Crafters of Los Angeles: starting Saturday your yarn stash can help empower the women in your community! We’re teaming up with our neighbors on West 3rd Street to bring in much needed donations for the Downtown Women’s Center. When you bring in your yarn stash – as long as it’s in a sealed bag!  – we’ll give you 15% off select yarns.

So, how does yarn help LA’s homeless women? The Downtown Women’s Center has an amazing, crafty branch called MADE by DWC. Through vocational opportunities women recovering from homelessness and extreme poverty discover talents, and develop marketable skills. The learn to make a variety of products (including hand-knitted ornaments), which are then sold to raise money for the entire organization.

Right now, the women at the center use yarn from reclaimed sweaters to make their ornaments. That means carefully ripping the sweaters to keep the yarn intact, and then further washing and processing to get the kinks out. That’s a lot of time and care that could be spent knitting and crocheting!

We all know that crafting offers a special kind of healing, and your donation helps foster recovery, creativity and empowerment among women in need. So, we are asking you to take a look through your stash to find yarns, knitting needles and crochet hooks that you don’t need anymore.

Here’s how it works:

Step 1: Go through your stash and find any yarn, knitting needles or crochet hooks you don’t want anymore. The yarn should be neat and tangle free. Wool, cotton, acrylic, silk, alpaca – all fibers and all yarn weights are welcome!

Step 2: VERY IMPORTANT! Put all your donated yarns, knitting needles and crochet hooks in a sealed ziplock bag. This step is crucial for moth prevention. We cannot accept any donations that are not in a sealed ziplock bag, unbagged yarn endangers the rest of the donations and the yarn in our store. Stash yarn that is not in a sealed bag will be asked to leave the premises:)  Better safe than sorry!

Step 3: Bring in your donation and enjoy 15% off select yarns starting November 1st and ending November 30th.

The Downtown Women’s Center (DWC) is the only organization in Los Angeles exclusively dedicated to addressing the immediate and long-term needs of women overcoming poverty and homelessness in downtown’s Skid Row.  The work they do for women in need in Los Angeles is incredible, and it’s no wonder that the Downtown Women’s Center has set a national standard for ending homelessness for women. Of the women housed at the DWC, 95% do not return to homelessness.

Thank you for helping us support our community!
Happy crafting!
Emma G.


Handmade Home – five blankets we LOVE!

October 23rd, 2014

There is nothing more intoxicating for a knitter than to see you handiwork serve an everyday purpose. Sure, getting pictures of brand new babies swaddled in sweaters makes us giddy. But it’s the handmade potholders, dish cloths, and blankets that emanate comfort and care throughout your home. Today we’ve rounded up five glorious blankets that are perfect for the handmade home!

Read the rest of this entry »


Wearable Woodland Friends from Tiny Owl Knits

October 2nd, 2014

A warm, relaxed pullover is essential for the chill of autumn. Something you can just throw on to gather windfall apples, or cozy up in with a mug of tea and a book. Even better when you made it yourself! If you’re looking around for cozy inspiration, check out these these intarsia pullovers from Tiny Owl Knits – they’re warm, wearable and full of character!
Read the rest of this entry »


The Man Cowl

September 5th, 2014

Man Cowl

With August behind us, it’s time to hunker down with a mug of hot tea and a knitting project.  It’s also that time of year when friends confess that they have always wanted to learn how to knit* . . . especially now that it’s chilly in the morning, and a plush project like the “Man Cowl” looks warm and inviting.  The “Man Cowl” is super quick knit, that uses an easy knit and purl sequence to make simple texture. Even better – it’s FREE! Read the rest of this entry »


Extra Slouch by Jane Richmond

August 28th, 2014

Extra Slouch by Jane Richmond

A warm hat is a staple for most students. But, between signing up for classes, finding a reasonably priced mini-fridge and Twin XL sheets, knitting one is probably the last thing on your mind. Before you know it you’re at the bookstore thinking “It’s chilly, they need a hat. Am I about to BUY one of these crappy mass-produced hats?!” Enter the “Extra Slouch” hat from Blue Sky Alpacas Traveler’s Series. The pattern works up quickly in those long orientation sessions, and before you know it you have a perfect hat for your student.

Extra Slouch by Jane Richmond

This delightfully smooshy hat is knit in Blue Sky Alpacas Extra – a plump, two-ply alpaca yarn. The tight twist of the plies makes the alpaca fiber springy, almost like a wool yarn. It also has a nice roundness in the strand resulting in perky, lofty stitches.  Alpaca fiber is ideal for cozy knit accessories since it’s a natural insulator.

Extra Slouch by Jane Richmond

The “Extra Slouch” would make excellent in-the-round project for a beginning knitter who is ready to learn some shaping. With its neutral, unfussy texture that everyone can wear, the “Extra Slouch” is great for gift knitting. Combined with a luscious yarn like Extra, the otherwise plain patterning stands out beautifully.

Extra Slouch by Jane Richmond

For a limited time we’re giving away the “Extra Slouch” pattern for free when you purchase one skein of Blue Sky Alpacas Extra!

Happy knitting!
Emma G.

P.S. – Elise is a goof!!!

Extra Slouch by Jane RichmondExtra Slouch by Jane Richmond


Ferns by Alana Dakos

August 15th, 2014

Most of my knitting projects are getting too big to lug around, and I can’t be without at least a little bit of knitting, so I cast-on “Ferns” hat from Botanical Knits 2. It’s a cablely hat with clever crown shaping that looks terrific in a worsted alpaca, or alpaca blend like the Cascade Eco Cloud I used.

When it comes to choosing yarn for a pattern, I usually pick something other than what’s prescribed. This can get me into a lot of sizing trouble if I’m not careful (I’m looking at you, diminutive pi shawl) but as long as I’m familiar with the loft and texture of the yarn used it’s fun to experiment.

The pattern calls for a worsted weight alpaca with a lot of fuzziness. I wanted to find an alpaca yarn with a slight fuzziness that wouldn’t hide the fern motif. Cascade Eco Cloud was the perfect fit for the gauge listed, and I knew from experience that the yarn has a unique effect on stitches. Because the individual plies in Eco Cloud are braided rather than twisted together, the yarn has a texture all its own.

This pattern was a lot of fun, and includes both written and charted instructions. With most the hats I’ve knit, the patterning (whether it’s colorwork, cables or lace) ended when the decreases began. Not with this hat! As I dutifully followed the chart thinking “where the heck is this going?” I was totally surprised to find a lovely floret pattern forming from the decreases – so pretty!

Want to test out Cascade Eco Cloud? This weekend Cascade Eco Cloud is 25% off both online and in-store! Send us your yarn swapping experiments and we’ll share them on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram!

Happy knitting!
Emma

Useful links:
Shop Cascade Eco Cloud!
Shop Cascade yarns!
Shop Botanical Knits 2!