September Workshops

Our Autumn 2017 workshop schedules have now landed with most customers and they’re booking up fast!

However here are some September workshops which still have space – to book just call 01626 836203.

Professional Finishing with Claire Crompton – 15th September.
Do you have half-finished garments languishing in your knitting bag, waiting to be sewn up? Have you attempted a few garments but been disappointed by the way they ended up looking because the finishing was so tricky? This is one of our all-time best selling workshops, and for very good reasons! Claire – author of The Knitter’s Bible and many other knitting technique books – draws on her huge wealth of knowledge and experience to help you overcome any fears about finishing and get a crisp, professional look to your garments. You will learn how easy it is to sew using mattress stitch, how to block and press your pieces, shaping to make sewing up easier, picking up stitches, buttonholes and more.
£50 including home-cooked lunch and tea-time treats.

Toe-Up Socks on Circular Needles using Magic Loop with Anniken Allis – 19th September.
Many knitters prefer to knit socks from the toe-up as this makes it easier to calculate yarn usage. You can also try your socks on as you go to ensure a perfect fit! This workshop will teach you how to work a closed cast on, knit the toe, increase for the gusset, turn the heel and work the heel flap, and how to do a stretchy cast off. In addition you’ll learn how to knit socks on circular needles using the magic loop technique – which in itself is a really useful technique to learn! You can also practice knitting two socks at a time – the perfect solution to the dreaded ‘second sock syndrome’…
£50 including home-cooked lunch and tea-time treats.

 

We also have spaces left on two crochet courses with Di Stewart:

Beginner’s Crochet – afternoons – 7th, 14th, 21st and 28th September
Crochet is a fantastic skill to have under your belt – not only is it perfect for beautiful colorwork blankets, modern garments and accessories, it can also be combined with knitting – for example for adding borders, joining pieces, or adding motifs. Di’s 4 week course will get you started with the techniques you need to know to tackle most crochet patterns.
£50 for the 4 week course.

 

There’s also set of more advanced crochet workshops with Di due to popular demand!
Beyond The Basics of Crochet – afternoons – 5th, 12, 26 October and 2nd November
In these Di will teach you more complex crochet stitches and how to create a crochet garment. You might have taken Di’s beginner workshop, but you don’t have to have – if you’ve learned basic crochet in the past and are ready to take your skills to the next level, this is for you.
£50 for the 4 week course.

Lastly we know there are many of our customers who work full time or look after family during the week and so we are thrilled to announce that up and coming local designer Heather Firby will be running Saturday workshops at Spin A Yarn this autumn.
We have spaces left on:

Learn to Knit in the Round / Magic Loop – morning – Saturday 12th August
Learn the magical Magic Loop technique and never sew up a seam again! We get so many requests from customers wanting to master the Magic Loop technique, it is SO useful. You will learn how to knit in the round to make a hat or cowl with no seams, plus how you would use the techniques to make a whole garment with no seams. You will also be shown how to translate straight knitting patterns to be knitted in the round.
£30 including tea-time treats

Basic Crochet Techniques – morning – 12th August
Here you will learn a variety of different crochet stitches and some of the many ways in which you can use them. You’ll learn how to read crochet patterns step by step, and there will be the opportunity to learn how to crochet amigurimi to create 3D shapes and work in the round.
£30 including tea-time treats

Garment Construction – afternoon – 9th September
You will learn all of the techniques needed to knit and construct a garment, including: shaping, picking up stitches and sewing up invisibly. You will also have the opportunity to learn how to edit parts of a pattern to change the fit or style.
£30 including tea-time treats

There are still places on other workshops – we’ve only listed the September ones here – don’t forget you can always check our website at www.spinayarndevon.co.uk/workshops to check availability and as ever, call 01626 836203 to book.

 

 

Teacher Focus – Alison Crowther Smith

Alison is well known and loved by many of our customers, but for those new to her designs and workshops, we thought we’d share some information about her inspirations, design process and some of her latest workshops.

Alison Crowther Smith

Having previously worked for Rowan Yarns as a Design Consultant, Joyce met Alison through the Rowan Rep at the time back in 2008. A passionate and committed knitting teacher, she has taught regular workshops at Spin A Yarn, with her wonderful moebius cowl workshops often selling out within days!

(What’s a moebius cowl you ask? It uses a specially adapted cast-on to knit a continuous loop cowl with one half twist – which sits beautifully and shows off both sides of the knitting.)

moebius-cowl

Her knitting focuses on detailed, often delicate designs with the emphasis on accessories and the occasional foray into home-ware knitting such as cushion covers and wonderfully snuggly throws.

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She is perhaps best known for a career-long love affair with one of our favourite yarns, Rowan’s best selling Kidsilk Haze, along with beads – exploring texture, subtle colour-ways and elegant knits.

When asked about her design process she said

“I am a very literal designer. When I see pleasing images, especially shapes, my mind instantly begins to try and recreate something of that imagery, in a knitted design. Once I know what I want to knit, I work backwards and layer the design elements into it. My focus tends to be on detailed features, such as a tailored cuff or a decorative texture, which I hope add elegance and a sense of the ‘whole’, as well as being really pleasing to knit.

Because I break my design process down into these layers, often the overall impression may be of an intricate, even difficult knit; but in fact, if I have a trade-mark I think it would be that each element of my designs is not very difficult to knit, but added together, they look as if they were. One of my aims is to make you, the knitter, feel amazing. 

I also like fairly small or medium-sized projects, because I am a big fan of completing my knitting within a reasonable timescale, or at least within my tolerance for boredom, which is fairly generous – but not boundless.”

Alison lives and works in Somerset where she draws inspiration from the local landscapes, saying “this large and beautiful county is full of vivid contrasts and atmospheric landscapes”.

We are featuring several new workshops from Alison in our Autumn Programme this year. More Moebius Designs is already fully booked, but here are two which you still have time to secure a place on!

Rise Scarf – Thursday 3rd November 2016 – £49 including home-cooked lunch and teatime treats.

Rise Scarf

Rise is a mirror image scarf – almost. On one side, the silver thread dominates, whilst on the other side, soft green woolen yarn eclipses the frost. Each year I am amazed by the sturdiness of snow-drops as they push through the crusted snow or frosted earth, granular from the repeated freeze and thaw. That is what I saw when I designed this scarf.

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This slender tubular scarf is knitted in the round – on DPNs, by magic loop method, or on two short circulars – whichever method you are more comfortable with! You will need 2-3 balls of DK yarn, plus 1-2 balls of Kidsilk Haze, and 3.75mm plus 4mm needles suitable for knitting in the round – and one stitch marker. Don’t forget you get a 10% discount voucher (15% off for Loyalty Card holders) on the day if you prefer to choose when you get here.

Owl Mitts – Friday 11th November 2016 – £49 including home-cooked lunch and teatime treats.

Owl Mitts

Who can resist these sweet tiny owls adorning the wrist of these cute mitts? They are quick, economical, and a great Christmas gift too, particularly for any bird-lovers or teens (owls are still very trendy!). The owls are formed using cable techniques – you’ll be amazed to see them forming up before your eyes. The course is suitable for knitters who are reasonably experienced but if you cannot already knit in the round, Alison will teach you to do this on DPNs so please bring some.

You will need 2 balls of DK yarn with a high wool content, plus 3mm needles to knit in the round. Also 3 stitch markers, a cable needle, 20 beads (size 5 or 6), or 20 tiny buttons (we stock some!). If you are a very tight knitter please also consider bringing 3.25mm needles. Don’t forget you get a 10% discount voucher (15% off for Loyalty Card holders) on the day if you prefer to choose when you get here.

To book just call 01626 836203 or email us with your contact details and which workshop you’re interested in on customerservices@spinayarndevon.co.uk and we’ll call you back. You can view all our workshops at http://www.spinayarndevon.co.uk/workshops/

We also sell Alison’s latest and VERY gorgeous pattern book, Elements, in the shop. You can read more about it here.

Smith and Jones Elements Cover