Yarn Cravings

When you walk into a yarn shop, what grabs your attention? Is it the colors and textures of the yarns on the shelves? Or the pattern books and samples on display? I think we all hope to find that spark, that perfect combination of beauty and necessity that make knitting and crocheting a joy to spend time on. Of course, sometimes it’s a pleasure simply to surround yourself with fiber inspiration and good company. As the sweater season goes into full swing in November, I’m looking forward to tempting you with delicious yarns, amazing patterns and great reasons to find your way to Uncommon Threads!

Which Came First, the Yarn or the Pattern?

I’m definitely a pattern-first kind of knitter, so my project queue nearly doubled when the Isager trunk show arrived at the shop this week. Designed by the motley crew of Danish “yarn-loving, creative co-workers” at the Isager Company, the collection of garments is just staggering in its innovative, imaginative and totally fashionable knitwear. From intriguing stitch patterns to beautifully simple details, every design has something special. (Shown below, garments from booklets No. 1, 2, 3… and No. 11, 12, 13…)


For the first peek at the Isager trunk show, as well as stunning samples from S. Charles Collezione, be sure to pop by the Uncommon Threads booth at this weekend’s Interweave Knit Lab (Nov. 1 – 4) at the San Mateo Marriott. The market is free to the public, and is open from Thursday evening to Sunday afternoon.

If you’re a yarn-first kind of person, S. Charles has yarns to make any project sing. Tivoli, an aran-weight silk/mohair blend, is wonderfully elegant knit or crocheted alone, and magnificent when paired with any of the other color coordinated yarns (Stella, Crystal, Luna) in the S. Charles line. The two beauties below, Emmanuelle Eyelet Top and the Juliette Scalloped Shawl, are among the garments you can try on this weekend only.


Some yarns should come with warning labels, such as “may induce irrational stashing habits.” Koigu is one of the most stashworthy yarns ever, and it’s almost impossible to resist adding colors to the shop inventory. New autumn hues of KPPPM arrived last week along with the third Koigu pattern magazine–Golden Wings is a favorite of mine, comfy as a sweatshirt but far more sophisticated.


The Fibre Company’s Road to China Light and Muench Touch Me Due both have amazingly rich color and softness, yet these yarns are very different. Road to China Light is a perfect storm of luxury fibers: alpaca, silk, camel and cashmere in sport weight that begs to be worn and enjoyed, especially for accessories and layering pieces (Frukttradgard beret shown below). Touch Me Due adds tonal depth to the velvety original Touch Me; knit it in simple garter stitch or bobbles for a lush cowl, or channel Nicky Epstein and crochet it for show-stopping embellishments.


Knit, Sip, Stroll

The downtown Los Altos Holiday Stroll (Friday, November 9) is a festive kick-off to the holiday season, and I’m looking forward to another terrific evening this year! Since it coincides with my 3rd anniversary as owner of Uncommon Threads, I like to start the party a little earlier in the day as thanks to all of you who make it possible for the shop to thrive. Please join us for coffee and cake starting at 3 p.m., or stroll by in the evening for champagne and cookies. There will also be live music on the streets, carriage rides and many other downtown businesses open late to celebrate–I hope to see you there!

In the New Year

While our fall classes are winding down, we are busily preparing the winter class schedule. I’m especially excited about an Aranami Shawl knit-a-long and a new, drop-in knitting club for kids aged 9 – 14 (dates TBD.) Please email me if you are specifically interested in either of these, or if you have suggestions for classes you’d like to take. Finally, we’ll have a fresh look for the Uncommon Threads website in 2013, with e-commerce expected soon after the launch–just what you need to satisfy yarn cravings around the clock!