Thursday Fresh Picks are Back in May!

Spring is finally here, with fresh produce, farmers markets and… crisp and colorful yarns. With the Los Altos Farmers Market starting in May, we’re inspired to offer our own “fresh picks in season!”

Every Thursday through August, we’ll highlight one spring yarn with pattern suggestions, and you’ll save 10% on that yarn all day. Not ready to buy? Then enjoy a “taste” from our sample skein. The complete calendar of Fresh Picks is below, and suggested patterns will be added to our website and Ravelry group page as the season continues.

August 28 : Be Sweet Bambino and Bambino Taffy
And here we are at the last Fresh Pick of 2014: soft and light as a cloud, this organic cotton/bamboo blend is ideal for sensitive skin. The candy colors make for cheerful knitting and a sunny outlook–a great way to extend summer relaxation into the fall!

Tori Cowl by Chiaki Hayashi features a modern lace pattern and feels impossibly soft around your neck. Treat delicate skin to a perky, exfoliating scrubber with the Spiral Scrubbie by Judith Prindle.

Be Sweet Bambino and Bambino Taffy

Be Sweet Bambino and Bambino Taffy

Tori Cowl by Chiaki Hayashi, Ravelry

Tori Cowl by Chiaki Hayashi, Ravelry

Spiral Scrubbie by Judith Prindle, Ravelry

Spiral Scrubbie by Judith Prindle, Ravelry

It would be hard to give away this adorable Momma and Baby Monster by Rebecca Danger–better make two! Sweet Chloe by Alana Dakos could be worked in stripes of Bambino, or let Bambino Taffy do the work for you. The perfect baby hat is simple and cozy, and just as comfy for adults–try Bamboo Baby Hat by Laurie Kimmelstiel.

Daphne & Delilah the Momma and Baby Monster by Rebecca Danger, Ravelry

Daphne & Delilah the Momma and Baby Monster by Rebecca Danger, Ravelry

Chloe by Alana Dakos, Ravelry

Chloe by Alana Dakos, Ravelry

Bamboo Baby Hat by Laurie Kimmelstiel, Ravelry

Bamboo Baby Hat by Laurie Kimmelstiel, Ravelry

 

May 1 : Rowan Summerspun
This cheery DK-weight yarn is spun with one strand of merino wool and one strand of cotton dyed separately and twisted around each other for a unique variegated effect. It’s wonderful for knitting, crocheting and weaving! Try any of these patterns for a great summer look:

Sea Holly by Donna Jones of fyberknitics: the subtle crescent shape and dagged edge make this a wear-anywhere shawl. Put a colorful new twist on an old favorite: Color Affection by Veera Valimaki.

Rowan Summerspun

Rowan Summerspun

Sea Holly by Donna Jones (Ravelry)

Sea Holly by Donna Jones (Ravelry)

Color Affection by Veera Valimaki (Ravelry)

Color Affection by Veera Valimaki (Ravelry)

Summerspun has appealing colorways for men too: Lower Eastside by Josh Bennett. Eyes Sweater by Linda Skuja has a fresh, intriguing crochet pattern. Beguiling stripes on a slouchy summer sweater: Bloomsbury by Marie Wallin.

Lower Eastside by Josh Bennett, Rowan Mag. 51

Lower Eastside by Josh Bennett, Rowan Mag. 51

Eyes Sweater by Linda Skuja (Ravelry)

Eyes Sweater by Linda Skuja (Ravelry)

Bloomsbury by Marie Wallin, Rowan Summerspun Collection

Bloomsbury by Marie Wallin, Rowan Summerspun Collection

May 8 : Berroco Linsey

Berroco Linsey is in the spotlight this week–a summery DK-weight linen/cotton blend that comes in fresh marled and self-striping colorways. It’s lightweight and feels great next to your skin, with an easy drape for cardigans, tee shirts… just about anything! Berroco #307 is dedicated to Linsey, but there are lots of other choices:

Bayarri from Berroco #307 shows off the complementary pastels of the self-striping shades; sweet and sinister? No, just plain adorable : Crocodile Stitch Booties by Bonita Patterns.

Berroco Linsey

Berroco Linsey

Bayarri, Berroco #307

Bayarri, Berroco #307

Crocodile Stitch Booties by Bonita Patterns (Ravelry)

Crocodile Stitch Booties by Bonita Patterns (Ravelry)

Lanesplitter Skirt by Tina Whitmore has unexpected edge and fabulous color. Your spring wardrobe deserves a splashy yet practical accessory: Solid Granny Square Bottom Bag by Bob Wilson. The popular Wingspan by Maylin Tri’coterie takes on a new personality in a summer-weight yarn:

Lanesplitter Skirt by Tina Whitmore (knitty.com)

Lanesplitter Skirt by Tina Whitmore (knitty.com)

Solid Granny Square Bottom Bag by Bob Wilson (Ravelry)

Solid Granny Square Bottom Bag by Bob Wilson (Ravelry)

Wingspan by Maylin Tri'coterie (Ravelry)

Wingspan by Maylin Tri’coterie (Ravelry)

May 15 : Tahki Cotton Classic
It’s all in the name–when you need a basic, reliable cotton that comes in a zillion colors, Tahki Cotton Classic is your go-to yarn. Its stability is so good, you can even crochet bikinis with it! But if bikinis aren’t your thing, try some of these lovely patterns instead:

Happypotamus the Happy Crochet Hippo by Heidi Bears would be ridiculously adorable in a baby’s nursery; Cotton Classic Pullover by Irina Poludnenko is easy to wear, with style to spare.

Tahki Cotton Classic

Tahki Cotton Classic

Happypotamus the Happy Crochet Hippo, by Heidi Bears (Ravelry)

Happypotamus the Happy Crochet Hippo, by Heidi Bears (Ravelry)

Cotton Classic Pullover by Irina Poludnenko

Cotton Classic Pullover by Irina Poludnenko

 

Funky Baby Monster Hat by Christine DeCoster will keep moms and dads smiling; Neat Ripple Pattern blanket by Lucy of Attic24 shows off the wide color palette; Liesl by Ysolda Teague is a simple top-down style with plenty of design options.

Funky Baby Monster hat by Christine DeCoster (Ravelry)

Funky Baby Monster hat by Christine DeCoster (Ravelry)

Neat Ripple Blanket by Lucy of Attic24 (Ravelry)

Neat Ripple Blanket by Lucy of Attic24 (Ravelry)

Liesl by Ysolda Teague

Liesl by Ysolda Teague

May 22 : Bergere de France Bergereine
This 50/50 wool-cotton blend marries the best qualities of both fibers in a crisp, heathered strand. You can wear it comfortably year-round in tee-shirts, cardigans or shawls–and it crochets beautifully too!

02 Cap Sleeve Tee & Cowl by Abigail Phelps is bold and breezy in a quick top-down style; add a swirl of color to your summer wardrobe with EchaRPe TWiRL by Claire Le Doledec.

Bergere de France Bergereine

Bergere de France Bergereine

02 Cap Sleeve Tee & Cowl, VK Spring/Summer 2014

02 Cap Sleeve Tee & Cowl, VK Spring/Summer 2014

EchaRPe TWiRL by Claire le Doledec, Ravelry

EchaRPe TWiRL by Claire le Doledec, Ravelry

For a feminine and flirty accessory, try #16 Crochet Handbag from Bergere de France #172; these Crochet Baby Converse by Suzanne Resaul are too cute for words; Leaving by Anne Hanson is an elegant layer for any season.

#16 Crochet Handbag, Bergere de France 172

#16 Crochet Handbag, Bergere de France 172

Crochet Baby Converse by Susan Resaul, Ravelry

Crochet Baby Converse by Susan Resaul, Ravelry

Leaving by Anne Hanson, twistcollective.com

Leaving by Anne Hanson, twistcollective.com

May 29 : Rowan All Seasons Cotton
Sometimes you need a snuggly summer pullover that’s not too warm; or a soft hat for sensitive skin; or just a bulky-but-lightweight cotton that knits or crochets quickly. Rowan All Seasons Cotton lives up to its name by giving you year-round comfort in fresh colors.

Miette by Andi Satterlund is a perfectly pretty complement to a summer dress; the look of maxi-lace in 198 Yards of Heaven by Christy Verity is modern and striking.

Rowan All Seasons Cotton
Rowan All Seasons Cotton
Miette by Andi Satterlund, Ravelry
Miette by Andi Satterlund, Ravelry
198 Yards of Heaven by Christy Verity
198 Yards of Heaven by Christy Verity

Babies need stylish summer cover too! Try Baby Sophisticate by Linden DownSmooch by Kim Hargreaves is saucy yet classic; Cabazon by Sarah Hatton is simply chic and a great project for a beginning crocheter.

Baby Sophisticate by Linden Down, Ravelry
Baby Sophisticate by Linden Down, Ravelry
Smooch by Kim Hargreaves, Rowan All Seasons Cotton Collection
Smooch by Kim Hargreaves, Rowan All Seasons Cotton Collection
Cabazon by Sarah Hatton, Rowan Summer Textures
Cabazon by Sarah Hatton, Rowan Summer Textures

June 5 : Classic Elite Sprout

There’s nothing quite like Sprout: fluffy soft with a charming pebbled texture, it’s well suited to simply styled baby blankets, pullovers, shawls and toys.

Oatmeal Pullover by Jane Richmond is the cozy pullover you need for early morning walks and chilly evenings; Cantaloop by Shelley L. Brander gives you a quick and splashy burst of color.

Classic Elite Sprout

Classic Elite Sprout

Oatmeal Pullover by Jane Richmond, Ravelry

Oatmeal Pullover by Jane Richmond, Ravelry

Cantaloop by Shelley L. Brander, Ravelry

Cantaloop by Shelley L. Brander, Ravelry

The award for delightful creativity goes to Morehouse Designs for the Baby Alligator Scarf. Last-minute barbecue? Riptide by Susan Mills has you covered. Olivia’s Butterfly by Valerie Whitten is easily sized up for a cushy chemo cap.

Baby Alligator Scarf by Morehouse Design, Ravelry

Baby Alligator Scarf by Morehouse Design, Ravelry

Riptide by Susan Mills, Classic Elite #9181 Surf

Riptide by Susan Mills, Classic Elite #9181 Surf

Olivia's Butterfly by Valerie Whitten, Ravelry

Olivia’s Butterfly by Valerie Whitten, Ravelry

June 12 : Taiyo Sock
I’m excited about this week’s Fresh Pick, Noro Taiyo Sock, because it’s unbelievably versatile and the colors are extraordinary. The fingering weight blend of cotton, wool, silk and nylon gives you a light, breathable, and strong fabric. Give it a try for some of these projects:

Wee Babe’s Gelato Vest by Wendy Russell is delightfully sweet in a pastels–and you know a yarn meant for the soles of your feet can handle the wear and tear of a toddler. Cables add lovely texture to these fashionably bright #7 Cabled Socks by Christina Behnke.

Noro Taiyo Sock

Noro Taiyo Sock

#7 Cabled Socks by Christina Behnke, Noro Magazine Fall 2012 & Ravelry

#7 Cabled Socks by Christina Behnke, Noro Magazine Fall 2012 & Ravelry

Wee Babe's Gelato Vest by Wendy Russell, Ravelry

Wee Babe’s Gelato Vest by Wendy Russell, Ravelry

Sockhead Hat by Kelly McClure is a great project when you just want to knit and let the yarn work its magic. Perfect for vacation knitting, even if you don’t leave home: the soothing undulations of Bermuda Scarf by Ilga Leja. The self-striping colorways are also beautifully rendered with crochet lace patterns, such as Shell Scarf by Mary
Jane Hall
.

Sockhead Hat by Kelly McClure, Ravelry

Sockhead Hat by Kelly McClure, Ravelry

Bermuda Scarf by Ilga Leja, Ravelry

Bermuda Scarf by Ilga Leja, Ravelry

Shell Scarf by Mary Jane Hall, Crochet Noro

Shell Scarf by Mary Jane Hall, Crochet Noro

June 19 : Filatura di Crosa Tiffany
With a hint of sparkle and a summery tweed texture, Tiffany is an elegant, Cinderella yarn that transforms an everyday pattern into a beautiful piece for special occasions or for when you just feel like wearing some subtle bling.

Cara Cropped Poncho Top by Lynn M. Wilson has old-world, Gatsby-esque glamour with its dramatic lace pattern and simple silhouette. Crochet Spring Wrap by Sarah Anderson Designs is just right over a ladylike dress, or a pair of jeans.

Cara Cropped Poncho by Lynn M. Wilson

Cara Cropped Poncho by Lynn M. Wilson

Crochet Spring Wrap by Sarah Anderson Designs

Crochet Spring Wrap by Sarah Anderson Designs

Crochet Necklace by Creative Yarn is an eye-catching accessory for every neckline; Maremma Two-Tone Vest by Irina Poludnenko is inspired by Chanel’s spring runway collection. Feeling flirty? Off the Shoulder Pullover by Vladimir Teriokhin heats up a chilly summer evening.

Crochet Necklace by Creative Yarn

Crochet Necklace by Creative Yarn

Maremma 2-Tone Vest by Irina Poludnenko

Maremma 2-Tone Vest by Irina Poludnenko

Off the Shoulder Pullover by Vladimir Teriokhin

Off the Shoulder Pullover by Vladimir Teriokhin

June 26: Malabrigo Lace
You may not think of merino as a summer yarn, but it’s absolutely heavenly in lace weight, and Malabrigo’s colorways are every bit as delicious paired with your warm weather staples. Wide temperature swings are guaranteed in Northern California, so you might as well be prepared in style!

Crochet is at its best in lightweight tees, like Quartz Lace Top by Dora Ohrenstein; Alhambra by Anne Hanson begs for a rich tonal color to show off the flames in one of my favorite lace patterns.

Quartz Lace Top, Interweave Crochet Spring/Summer 2013

Quartz Lace Top, Interweave Crochet Spring/Summer 2013

Alhambra by Anne Hanson, Ravelry

Alhambra by Anne Hanson, Ravelry

Lace Slouch Hat by Linda Permann would be at home in the Anthropologie catalog; Lila[c]loud by Nadia Cretin-Lechenne is sweetness in a feather-light sweater (see how it’s held up only by tape!); for casual, slouchy comfort that is nonetheless chic, try Weathered Pullover by Ann Weaver.

Lace Slouch Hat by Linda Permann, Ravelry

Lace Slouch Hat by Linda Permann, Ravelry

Lila[c]loud by Nadia Cretin-Lechenne, Ravelry

Lila[c]loud by Nadia Cretin-Lechenne, Ravelry

Weathered Pullover by Ann Weaver, Ravelry

Weathered Pullover by Ann Weaver, Ravelry

July 3 : Rowan Panama
Rowan Panama might just be the perfect summer yarn. Nearly equal parts silk, cotton and rayon, this lightly textured fingering weight yarn manages to be both casual and elegant, draping beautifully in stockinette fabric as well as lace patterns.

Amber by Martin Storey is fresh and feminine–choose colors from your favorite palette; Pippi by Marie Wallin shows off a gorgeous crochet lace pattern.

Rowan Panama

Rowan Panama

Amber by Martin Storey, Rowan 51

Amber by Martin Storey, Rowan 51

Pippi by Marie Wallin, Rowan Holiday Crochet

Pippi by Marie Wallin, Rowan Holiday Crochet

Make this cardigan your favorite summer staple: Ocean by Sarah Hatton; enjoy playing with texture and color in the Paint Chip Skirt by Jill Stover; Limestone Landscape by Elizabeth Cobbe is effortless and simply chic.

Ocean by Sarah Hatton, Rowan Simple Shapes Panama

Ocean by Sarah Hatton, Rowan Simple Shapes Panama

Paint Chip Skirt by Jill Stover, Ravelry

Paint Chip Skirt by Jill Stover, Ravelry

Limestone Landscape by Elizabeth Cobbe, Ravelry

Limestone Landscape by Elizabeth Cobbe, Ravelry

July 10 : Bergere de France Ecoton
What to do when you crave the nubbly comfort of tweed but you’re not ready for the warmth of wool? Look to a recycled blend like Bergere’s Ecoton, a cushy blend of cotton, acrylic and other mystery fibers in sun-soaked colors. With more spring and texture than your usual basic cotton, Ecoton gives an earthy depth to your summertime tops. Pick a project and then join us on Friday, July 11 for our Soiree Tricot, celebrating French knitted style!

Soft pleats at the neckline add a striking detail to the breezy Vesper top by Heidi Kirrmaier; keep your crochet cool with the simple Three-Round Lace scarf by Caissa McClinton.

Bergere de France Ecoton

Bergere de France Ecoton

Vesper by Heidi Kirrmaier, Ravelry

Vesper by Heidi Kirrmaier, Ravelry

Three Round Lace by Caissa McClinton, Crochet One-Skein Wonders

Three Round Lace by Caissa McClinton, Crochet One-Skein Wonders

Babies love going green: the adorable #42 Pullover with Hood is cozy and comfortable for summer tots. Amineko Crocheted Cat by Nekoyama is sure to get lots of love from your little one, too. Make the most of Ecoton’s edited palette with color-blocking and lace of the Blind Date top by K. Finn Dixon–every combination is beautiful!

#42 Pullover with Hood, Bergere de France 167

#42 Pullover with Hood, Bergere de France 167

Amineko Cat by Nekoyama, Ravelry

Amineko Cat by Nekoyama, Ravelry

Blind Date by K. Finn Dixon, Ravelry

Blind Date by K. Finn Dixon, Ravelry

July 17 : Tahki Rosa
Tahki Rosa is in the spotlight this week! This is a cotton yarn for instant gratification: soft as a fluffy cloud, with a wonderful thick-and-thin texture, it works up into a sweater or cardigan in a flash and without fuss. Tahki’s Intermix pattern book has several appealing patterns for Rosa, or you can try one of these styles, hand-picked for you!

Simple Crochet Shrug #90689 is a dramatic cover-up for a simple tee or summer dress. A bold horizontal cable makes a modern statement in the Bliss Sideways Cable Shrug.

Tahki Rosa
Tahki Rosa
Simple Crochet Shrug #90689 from Lion Brand
Simple Crochet Shrug #90689 from Lion Brand
Bliss Sideways Cable Shrug, Tahki Intermix
Bliss Sideways Cable Shrug, Tahki Intermix

Another lovely layer, with a more elegant look: Coastal Capelet by Susan Barstein. No more itchy sweaters! Kids will love Rosa’s softness in Spectacle Lake Pullover by Sara Gresbach. Rosa’s playful texture makes a simple V-neck sweater into a favorite, go-anywhere top: Destinations Top-Down Pullover by Pam Grushkin.

Coastal Capelet by Susan Barstein, Ravelry
Coastal Capelet by Susan Barstein, Ravelry
Spectacle Lake Pullover by Sara Gresbach, Ravelry
Spectacle Lake Pullover by Sara Gresbach, Ravelry
Destinations Pullover, Tahki Intermix
Destinations Pullover, Tahki Intermix

July 31 : Cascade Fixation
There’s nothing quite like Fixation, with its extraordinary elasticity inside a cotton strand. What can you do with it? More than you might think….

Your cherubs will get long wear out of an extra-stretchy hat, in a solid or variegated colorway: Angel Wings Hat by Susie Bonell. Make your own charming tool accessories with the Froggie Tapester with Lily Pad Scissor Case by Melanie Blake.

Cascade Fixation

Cascade Fixation

Angel Wings Hat by Susie Bonell, Cascade

Angel Wings Hat by Susie Bonell, Cascade

Froggie Tapester and Lily Pad Scissor Case by Melanie Blake, Ravelry

Froggie Tapester and Lily Pad Scissor Case by Melanie Blake, Ravelry

No more slippers and socks that sag! Not-So-Ruby Slippers by Dawn Ellerd keep your tootsies colorfully snug, while Toe-Up Fixation Footies by Sarah H. Arnold are a sporty alternative to traditional wool socks. Finally, Fixation Tank DK121 by Joan Somerville gives you body-conscious style to wear alone or as a layer.

Not So Ruby Slippers by Dawn Ellerd (What Would Madame Defarge Knit?)

Not So Ruby Slippers by Dawn Ellerd (What Would Madame Defarge Knit?)

Toe Up Fixation Footies by Sarah H. Arnold, Ravelry

Toe Up Fixation Footies by Sarah H. Arnold, Ravelry

Fixation Tank DK121 by Joan Somerville, Cascade

Fixation Tank DK121 by Joan Somerville, Cascade

August 7 : Rowan Summer Tweed
This rustic blend of silk and cotton has been in Rowan’s yarn portfolio for ages, and there’s good reason for its longevity. For quick summer sweaters with substance, but not weight, you can’t beat Summer Tweed’s lightness and cool feel on your skin. It’s not a springy yarn, though, so work it on a larger needle or hook to give your hands a break–it will be worth the effort!

Summer Tweed’s nubby texture gives a bohemian look to lace and stitch patterns; try Lin Lin Shawl by Yoko Johnston for a dramatic touch. Flex by Heidi Kirrmaier could be your favorite comfy summer tee.

Rowan Summer Tweed

Rowan Summer Tweed

Lin Lin Shawl by Yoko Johnston

Lin Lin Shawl by Yoko Johnston

Flex by Heidi Kirrmaier

Flex by Heidi Kirrmaier

The Shoulder Cozy by Churchmouse is an easy, versatile accessory for summer and fall, and knits up at lightning speed on size 13 needles; go a little bit rock ‘n roll with Coachella by Fathom Harvill; or add a unexpected edge to the feminine Pink Cowl by Gabriela.

Shoulder Cozy by Churchmouse

Shoulder Cozy by Churchmouse

Coachella by Fathon Harvill

Coachella by Fathom Harvill

Pink Cowl by Gabriela

Pink Cowl by Gabriela

August 14 : Classic Elite Soft Linen
Soft Linen is the ultimate transitional season yarn–and sometimes I think all seasons on the West Coast are transitional! With just about equal parts linen, wool and alpaca, Soft Linen gives you excellent stitch definition, drape with memory, and the right amount of warmth in a year-round DK weight strand.

Soft Linen’s rich colors make lace look modern in Minnie’s Cover Up by Grace Mcewen; go traditional or playful with Amy Polcyn’s crocheted Vintage Linen Coasters.

Classic Elite Soft Linen

Classic Elite Soft Linen

Soft Linen Minnie's Cover Up by Grace Mcewen

Soft Linen Minnie’s Cover Up by Grace Mcewen

Vintage Linen Coaster by Amy Polcyn

Vintage Linen Coaster by Amy Polcyn

This delightful topsy-turvy doll from Irene Strange will stand the test of time and hold up to many years of love; Abria by Bonne Marie Burns is a spare, feminine cardigan to layer effortlessly over anything; play with infinite color combinations in the Stripie Scarf by Amy Loberg.

Little Red Riding Hood Topsy-Turvy Doll by Irene Strange

Little Red Riding Hood Topsy-Turvy Doll by Irene Strange

Abria by Bonne Marie Burns

Abria by Bonne Marie Burns

Stripie Scarf by Amy Loberg

Stripie Scarf by Amy Loberg

August 21 : Filatura di Crosa Nirvana
As the name suggests, this 2-ply lace weight yarn is hard to top: 100% superwash merino in a wide and contemporary color palette, Nirvana is spun smoothly for pure stitch heaven. It’s fantastic on its own, and totally delectable paired with Filatura di Crosa Superior.

Stripes are always in style, and have a hint of vintage glamour in the sheer Morning Horizon by Dani Berg.  It’s not just for shawls: lace weight yarn creates an artistic textural effect in Empyrean Tunic by Anne Kuo Lukito.

Filatura di Crosa Nirvana

Filatura di Crosa Nirvana

Morning Horizon by Dani Berg

Morning Horizon by Dani Berg

Empyrean Tunic by Anne Kuo Lukito

Empyrean Tunic by Anne Kuo Lukito

The intricate crocheted lace pattern in Fritillary Shawl by Aparna Rolfe is spectacular with a beaded edge. Bring a modern touch to Elizabeth Zimmerman’s Baby Sweater on 2 Needles with a lighter strand. Light as Air Fingerless Gloves by Natalie O’Shea add a luxurious pop of color to your fall wardrobe.

Fritillary Shawl by Aparna Rolfe

Fritillary Shawl by Aparna Rolfe

Baby Sweater on 2 Needles by Elizabeth Zimmerman

Baby Sweater on 2 Needles by Elizabeth Zimmerman

Light as Air Fingerless Gloves by Natalie O'Shea

Light as Air Fingerless Gloves by Natalie O’Shea