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May 2017 Newsletter

REMINDER!

Mother's Day, May 14th, is almost upon us! If you are looking for a gift for a mom in your life, please come in and see us for some suggestions. If you are a mom with a love of all things fibery, send the aspiring gift-givers in your life along to us, especially if you have filled out a wish list with us.

KNITTING CLINICS TO CONTINUE AT THE BLACK SHEEP WITH EXPANDED SESSIONS & HOURS!

ANOTHER REMINDER-- Knit Clinics continue on Saturday mornings from 10:00 until noon and during May from 3 p.m. to 4 p.m. (Please note: Teacher Kathy will be out of town on Sat. May 27th, so there will not be a Clinic that day.) You can give us a call to pre-register for a time slot in advance, or just stop by, and we will fit you in to the schedule. The cost is $10 for up to 30 minutes of one-on-one assistance from Kathy.

Just in!

Dos Tierras from Malabrigo! A small selection from our order has finally arrived. Hooray! We've been waiting months to get our hands on this yarn, and our patience has been rewarded. This lovely DK-weight yarn is 50% merino wool and 50% alpaca, and comes in 210 yd. skeins. Because the alpaca and wool fibers absorb the dye slightly differently, the skeins have a softly heathered appearance. In addition to the Dos Tierras, two new colors of Malabrigo's Mechita came in. Mechita is a fingering-weight single-ply 100% superwash merino; these new colors are intense tonals with some speckling. Mechita comes in 420 yd. super-soft skeins.

 

 

Calling all speckled yarn lovers! A shipment of Crazyfoot and Twizzlefoot from Mountain Colors in their "berry" series have arrived. We even have skeins of the newest "berry" color, Juneberry, in both Crazyfoot and Twizzlefoot. These bright and colorful fingering-weight skeins just make you smile. If you like a little nylon in your sock yarn, Crazyfoot is a good choice. It is 90% superwash merino / 10% nylon, and it is spun to have a lot of bounce in each 425 yd. skein. Twizzlefoot is Crazyfoot's slightly more refined sibling. Each 450 yd. skein is 53% superwash merino, 17% domestic wool (non-superwash), 17% silk and 13% nylon. Twizzlefoot feels softer and is less bouncy than Crazyfoot; because of its fiber content, it should be hand washed.

Along with the Crazyfoot and Twizzlefoot, we added several new afghan/throw kits from Mountain Colors. Each afghan kit contains 7 coordinating skeins of lovely yarn, along with a pattern booklet containing two knitted patterns and one crocheted pattern.

We recently received raku yarn bowls, buttons and pins from Lickin'Flames, a small pottery about an hour from Sacramento. These pieces have to be seen in person to do them justice; a photograph just can't capture the amazing iridescence of the glazes. We have several beautiful yarn bowls, along with shawl pins (with sticks), forked shawl pins, buttons, and pins. Some of the pins and all the forked shawl pins are decorated with black sheep (both ewes and rams). Of course!
We loved the needle cases in our last shipment from DellaQ so much that we had to order some more things. We have more of the silk zipped pouches and Tagalong notions pouches, and we have added Hanging Circular Needle Cases. The hanging cases are long silken rectangles with marked slots to hold your circular needles; you push the needle through the slot and let the tips dangle while the slot holds the cable securely and relatively straight, reducing the tendency of the cables to curl up. The cases come with ties, so you can tie the case onto a clothes hanger and keep it in a closet or behind a door./td>

We have also replenished our stock of Addi circular needles--Turbos, Rockets, and Lace-- in a variety of sizes and lengths, so if you are an Addi fan, we should be able to support you.

FINISHED PROJECT!
 
In our April newsletter, we told you about Trendsetter's Autumn Wind Confetti, a lovely blend of cotton and just a touch of cashmere. It's available in several speckled colorways. Since then Maggie got busy designing and knitting a summer-weight scarf that she's calling the Tutti Frutti Mesh Scarf to show off this special yarn (when you see it you'll understand the name), and her pattern will be available soon as well. As for the pattern mentioned last month for Kathy's self-fringing scarf made from Queensland's Savanna, it's now available in the shop.

AND IN THE FUTURE: Maggie and Kathy are making enough progress on their Kallara wraps that they're already dreaming about their next shared project, which is -- The Simple Tee from Churchmouse. We'll keep you posted.

The Black Sheep will be closed Monday, May 29th in observance of Memorial Day.

And finally, the dates for the 2017 San Diego Yarn Crawl have been set -- Thursday, September 14, through Sunday, September 17. Mark your calendars, and we'll be providing more information as plans unfold.  
To Get to Our "New" Location in Sorrento Valley: Link to Driving Directions: TheBlackSheep.biz/AboutUs

April 2017 Newsletter

KNITTING CLINICS TO CONTINUE AT THE BLACK SHEEP WITH EXPANDED SESSIONS & HOURS!

Good news! We intend to continue our Saturday morning knitting clinics with two modest changes that were suggested by participants.

1. Beginning on April 22, each person will have 30 minutes of individual attention.

2. Pre-registration: You can phone (858-481-6708) and sign-up in advance to reserve time in a specific hour, 10 - 11 a.m., 11 a.m. to noon, or 3 - 4 p.m. (Notice that we're adding an afternoon session.) We will take 2 people in each hour-long time-slot, and the person who arrives first will have the first 30-minute one-on-one session. Please arrive on time for your session, knowing that the longest you will need to wait is 30 minutes. If the hour you request is already full, please consider reserving in a different hour.

3. If you drop in without making a reservation, we will gladly accommodate you if we have time available, but customers who made prior reservations will have precedence. 

Thanks to all the participants in our trial month. You made the experiment a success!

MOTHER'S DAY IS MAY 14!

Calling all moms (or husbands, daughters, sons, grandkids, etc)! Here are a few ideas for giving or requesting (don't forget our Big Black Book containing wish lists--yours or for someone you love):

A gift certificate

A set of interchangeable needles

An umbrella swift and/or a ball winder

Favorite YARN or accessories

Please come in for more suggestions!

 

 

NEW STUFF

Perfect for summer scarves and wraps is Risoni, by The Loom (distributed by Ryn Yarns). Risoni is a thick-and-thin 100% silk laceweight yarn from Thailand, and is available in 17 gorgeous colors. Each ball is 25 gr., which contains approximately 154-165 yards of radiantly colored silk. In addition to the Risoni, we also have a limited number of "Shifting Silk Scarf" kits from The Loom. Each kit includes a ball of Risoni, a ball of Speck (100% matte silk), a ball of Fusilli-80 (80% silk/20% cotton), and the scarf pattern, charmingly packaged up in a clear plastic cup. Each yarn has a unique texture, and the three yarns are color-coordinated to go together.

For lovers of speckled yarns, Trendsetter now offers Autumn Wind Confetti, a DK-weight yarn in an unusual fiber blend: 90% cotton/10% cashmere. This yarn promises to produce soft comfortable summer garments and accessories. Each skein has 175 yards of multi-colored fun. Maggie is quite taken with this yarn and plans to start a summer scarf to show it off.

Another yarn perfect for Southern California is Savanna from Queensland. This yarn is 66% silk/34% linen, and works up at DK-weight (20-22 sts. per inch on US 5-6 needles). Each skein contains 250 yards, and we stock 19 beautiful saturated colors. Kathy has created a self-fringing, striped, long rectangular scarf using three colors of Savanna (and some Toreador glitter from Lane Borgosesia) and is very pleased with the feel of the fabric produced. Kathy intends to have her scarf pattern available for sale at the shop soon. Meanwhile, please come in and check out the scarf and this new yarn.
New bags and needle cases from DellaQ! To help you get organized this spring, we suggest that you try one or more of our new DellaQ bags and cases. The Travel Wallet has slots for crochet hooks, DPNs, and circular needles, a zipped pocket for notions, and a small snapped strap to hold stitch markers. The Solely Socks Roll has slots to hold DPNs, and has a tiny zipper pocket for notions. The Tagalong zipped bag holds all your notions and can be combined with other pieces in the collection. The wallet, roll and Tagalong are all made of lovely silk. The Pippa Yarn Dispenser is made of interesting figured cotton fabric, and holds a ball of yarn. Ribbon ties cinch it closed at the neck, making an impromptu yarn bowl! Who knew that getting organized could be such fun?

 

RESTOCKING!

We've added 5 new colors to our Gleem Lace selection, in addition to restocking several popular colors. This glowing laceweight blend of silk and Blue Faced Leicester wool from the British company Fyberspates has us all under its spell for its soft hand and amazing colors. The new colors include Spiced Plum, Mixed Magentas, Peacock, Crocus, Lavender Haze and Sea Green. They join old color favorites Tweed Imps, Pebble Beach, Deep Forest and Verdegris. This yarn has got to be seen to be believed-- and touched to appreciate its softness.

Just in time for spring and summer, new Transitions shawl kits from Trendsetter have arrived. This multi-strand cotton/acrylic blend is surprisingly plush and offers the true ombre effect, shading gradually from color to color along its length. Each shawl kit comes with its own box holding the yarn and a free knitted shawl pattern. Maggie knitted up a sample shawl for the shop, so come on in to check it out.

We have more Squishy in stock! Hooray! We've just received a shipment of Anzula Squishy. This fingering-weight yarn is perfect for socks, shawls and other accessories. Known for its lovely shaded semi-solid colors, this super soft superwash merino/cashmere/nylon yarn is one of our favorites. Everyone who handles it has to squish it in their hands; truth in advertising here!

More silk "Knit out" boxes and striped cotton zipper bags have come in from Lantern Moon. The Knit Out boxes are beautiful, soft versions of yarn bowls; they have a hole in the front of the box to feed the yarn end through and fabric knot buttons to hold the box closed. The zipper bags are oval-shaped and have a rustic, brightly striped fabric exterior and solid color interior lining. They are big enough to hold multiple balls of yarn (perfect for the popular striped shawls requiring two colors of yarn).

COMING ATTRACTIONS!

We're STILL awaiting the arrival of "Dos Tierras", a new alpaca/merino blend from Malabrigo. The latest word from Malabrigo is "soon." Stay tuned for further developments . . .

More Twizzlefoot and Crazyfoot sock yarns from Mountain Colors in their "Berry" (that is, speckled) series are on order, including a new color for 2017.

Lovely Raku yarn bowls, buttons and shawl pins from LickinFlames should be arriving very soon.

WHAT'S ON OUR NEEDLES?

Kathy and Maggie have started a two-woman knit-along! Our pattern is a striped shawl by Ambah O'Brien called "Kallara." Kathy's shawl features the strong colors of rust, orange, gold, blue, and brown, while Maggie is using softer colors, a speckled white and slately blues. What yarns are we using, you ask? Kathy is using Malabrigo Sock (color: Marte) with Blue Moon Fiber Arts Socks that Rock (color: Sock Club 2017, it's a secret) and Maggie is using Mountain Colors Twizzlefoot (color: Snowberry) and Blue Moon Fiber Arts Socks that Rock (color: Dusty Blues; a Christmas present from Kathy; she knew, didn't she?). We'll keep you posted on our progress.

What's on YOUR needles? We'd love to know!
 

OUR LATEST WINNERS

Congratulations to the winners in our final "Four Seasons of Fiber" gift basket drawing: Cheryl, Ian, Patty, and Rebecca! In addition, congratulations to the winners of the "Four Seasons of Fiber" guessing game: Grace, Jeff, Irina, and Tessa. Each winner receives a $25 gift certificate to The Black Sheep. For the curious, we'll post in the shop the intended identity of each character, along with selected alternative guesses from our very creative customers. Stop by the shop to see them.

NEW STUFF!

From The Fibre Co., we offer Road to China Lace and Road to China Light. Each yarn is a luxurious blend of 65% alpaca, 15% silk, 10% camel and 10% cashmere and is sumptuously soft. We can't stop patting it. Road to China Light is a sport-weight yarn (159 yds. per skein), works up at 6 - 6.5 sts. per inch on US 3 - 4 needles, and comes in softly heathered colors. Road to China Lace comes in 656 yd. skeins and works up at 8 - 10 sts. per inch on US 0 - 2 needles. We currently have Lace in a number of beautiful colors. Come in soon to touch these lovely yarns. You won't want to put them down!

 

We mentioned in our last newsletter that Shibui's Silk Cloud was expected soon. It's here! We currently have 11 colors of this soft, glowing 60% kid mohair, 40% silk yarn, and you'll discover that the generous amount of silk in this yarn makes it softer than many other mohair/silk blends. Silk Cloud is considered a lace-weight yarn, with 330 yds. per skein. Also from Shibui, we've received some Reed, which replaces their Linen (no longer available due to mill issues, not to a defect in the yarn). Reed is a fingering-weight, 100% linen chainette yarn, and we find it softer and drapier than the original Linen. We have some Linen in stock, and several colors of Reed. The 2 yarns have the same yardage and are interchangeable for gauge, so you can use them together.  
For fans of Classic Elite's cotton yarns Sprout and Seedling, there is now Mika! Super-soft Mika is 100% organic cotton and has a nubbly matte finish, just like cousins Sprout and Seedling. It is sport-weight at 165 yds. per hank and works up at 5.5 - 6 sts. per inch on US 2 - 4 needles. We have Mika in a wide range of colors. Mika will be perfect for baby items and other lightweight projects.

If you're looking for a fingering-weight merino baby yarn, we have a soft new yarn for you: DMC's aptly named 100% Baby. Each 245 yd. (50 gr.) ball is 100% superwash merino wool. We offer 100% Baby in 8 colors: white, cream, pastel yellow, pink, mint green, denim blue, pale gray, and medium gray.

Fun new project bags from Mybaggees have arrived. These mesh bags come in 3 sizes, have snap closures (a nice detail for anyone who has ever gotten their yarn caught in the zipper teeth of a zipped bag), and detachable wrist straps. We carry 3 colors--black, silver and burgundy--in each size.

RESTOCKINGS!

Our back ordered shipment of Malabrigo's Caracol came in! We now have Caracol in several popular colors, including Aniversario, Archangel, Solis, Piedras, Indiecita, Diana, and Natural. Plus, we added a new purple/magenta color: Hollyhock. In addition to the Caracol, we restocked Malabrigo Sock, Arroyo, and Baby Silkpaca Lace, along with the ever-popular Rios and Mecha. Malabrigo Book #11 is hot off the presses and filled with fun projects celebrating Malabrigo's 10th anniversary! The patterns in the book showcase their anniversary colorway Aniversario, a stunning color blend of magenta and blue violet with a twist of yellow and green. We offer the Aniversario colorway in several of Malabrigo's yarns.

Everyone loved our first shipment of Fyberspates' Gleem Lace so much that we sold out of it! Naturally, we had to order more. Our new shipment has arrived, and it is beautiful. Gleem Lace is a luxurious laceweight yarn in a blend of 55% superwash Blue-faced Leicester wool and 45% silk. It comes in a generous 874 yd. hank. Gleem Lace glows; there is no other word for it. We currently have it in 7 variegated and semi-solid colorways. Come in soon to touch and see this amazing yarn.

Just in! Pink worsted weight yarn in three different shades plus cream! If you're planning to make a hat from one of the downloadable patterns, we can support your project!

We've restocked our Noro Silk Garden Sock and expanded our collection of kits for Stephen West's very popular Spectra scarf. (We also have lots of colorways of this multi-colored yarn so you aren't limited to our kits: you can design your own!)

We also restocked two of our favorite cotton yarns: Classic Elite's Sprout and Seedling (cousins to our new Mika). Made of 100% matte-finished organic cotton, these yarns are wonderfully soft and slightly textured. They are very popular for baby blankets and clothes, and also for chemo caps. Sprout is the chunky yarn, working up on US 10 needle, while Seedling is the worsted weight version, using a US 7 needle. In addition to restocking some of the colors we usually carry, we added some new colors for 2017, including "bracken," an unusual greeny brown (Kathy calls it "breen."), "navy," and "cerulean," both lovely blues

For those who have asked for Juniper Moon's Zooey in neutral colors, we heard you and now have some in stock. We added 8 colors ranging from white to oatmeal, plus gray and aqua. Zooey is a sport-weight, textured blend of cotton and linen with a subtle marled appearance. It comes in 284 yd. balls and is perfect for crisp spring/summer garments and accessories.

If you're looking for thin metallic yarn to carry along with another yarn to boost your project's sparkle quotient, we've just received a shipment of Toreador by Lane Borgosesia. Each 198 yd. ball is a blend of viscose and polyester (that's the sparkle). Our shipment of 10 colors included silver, gold, pewter, charcoal, fuchsia, dark blue, light blue, copper, aqua multi, and teal multi.

A selection of small dumpling bags from Binkwaffle have arrived, including a couple of new fabrics for 2017. For all you cat lovers out there, one of the new fabric patterns is "Cat's Meow," featuring stylized cat faces in orange and white.
In the accessories department, we've restocked both fixed and interchangeable knitting needles from Addi and Knitter's Pride (including Dreamz, Naturalz, and Cubics). We've also made up charming little accessory tins that hold darning needles, stitch markers, snips, and point protectors, and some tins include a fun black sheep magnet.

COMING ATTRACTIONS!

"Dos Tierras," a new alpaca/merino blend from Malabrigo. The latest word from Malabrigo is that they expect to ship our yarn at the end of March or early in April. More Hempathy (blend of hemp, cotton and Modal, a man-made fiber) from Elsebeth Lavold is expected, in lots of colors.
New Location: Link to Driving Directions: TheBlackSheep.biz/AboutUs

Copyright 2017 • The Black Sheep • 11675 Sorrento Valley Rd. #H • San Diego, CA 92121 • 858-481-6708 • info@theblacksheep.biz