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Some of the yarns
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This time of year has great significance for me. This past April 22nd, I celebrated 24 years of continuous sobriety. I am grateful for this gift. And this year, I decided to celebrate it in a different way.
Brenna, Angela, and I took a road trip to Topsy Farm as my anniversary happily coincided with their annual sheep shearing! What an amazing experience we had. Brenna's piece in this newsletter is about her experience while visiting the farm. We'll be posting all of our pictures and videos on Facebook so please visit (and like) our page to see more.
When we arrived we were warmly welcomed by Sally and Ian Bowen and their lovely boys -- Jacob & Kyle. Now speaking of gratitude, Sally is a dynamo person. I stand in awe of this woman who has suffered (and nearly died!) from Lyme disease for years, and despite being bedridden for 18 hours a day, managed to get up and show us her wares. Ian welcomed us into their home and served us delicious homemade soup and we broke bread and had yummy cheese, bread, and pie we'd brought with us from our beloved Kensington Market.
As you know, I love to buy local. How much more local can you get than buying yarn from a farm right here in Ontario? We are delighted to introduce Topsy Farms' beautiful wools to the Toronto market. This yarn will be available at cost for those participating in our Knit-A-Thon this coming Saturday, May 11th. I urge you to inform yourselves about these amazing people and to buy lots of their yarns so we can help keep their boys (well grown men) on the farm. Please go to www.topsyfarm.com to learn more about their amazing farm.
Now we've got a lot more going on but I'll let the girls tell you all about it.
New and Inspiring
In this issue...
* Introducing Wool from Topsy Farm!
* World Wide Knit in Public Day
* Stitch-A-Thon reminder!
* Introducing Emily!
Introducing Wool from Topsy Farm!
I was so excited when I heard we would be getting yarn from Topsy Farm. I had heard wonderful things about this family sheep farm, which is located just across the water from Kingston on Amherst Island. I was even MORE pleased when I found out I would have the opportunity to VISIT that farm in person and see a sheep shearing! The trip was so rewarding. Sylvie, Angela and I met some amazing, friendly people and learned so much about their processing techniques. Topsy Farm produces their wool the natural way, with no nasty chemicals in the processing. The wool mill that processes the fleece and spins it into yarn does not use harsh chemicals like sulphuric acid like most mills do. This is great for us as knitters and crocheters, because it means that the lanolin on the fleece is still there to condition the wool, and the fibres do not get prickly and barbed as a result. The wool makes a very rustic feeling, durable yarn, but it is hypoallergenic because it lacks all of the skin-irritating chemicals used in modern processing.
I really fell in love with the farm. It was so scenic, and the sheep were so charming, and everyone that we met was so accommodating about my persistent questions. I left knowing so much more about the process of raising sheep, and producing wool. I also left with more than a sweater's quantity of yarn, and plenty of washed and carded wool to spin on my wheel! Sometimes living in the city I lose touch with the origins of the things that I use every day, like wool. I feel so great knowing where my wool comes from, how it is processed, and that we are helping support this lovely local business prosper. So much to love!
We have a great selection of colours in a hard-wearing worsted weight yarn at the store. We also brought in some washed and carded wool for us spinners! I am sure you will love it as much as I do.
World Wide Knit in Public Day
If you read my bit in last month's newsletters, you already know how big a kick I get out of knitting in public. Aside from it being a great way to meet new people (and learn about their grandmothers), how else would I ever get any knitting done outside of the house? If you're a bit shy about taking your craft out of the closet (or even if you aren't), the absolute easiest way out is this coming June on World Wide Knit in Public Day!
Join knitters and other fibre artists across the entire world as we come together over our needles in cafes, parks, bars, public transit, and anywhere else you can think of. The celebrations actually last a whole week, depending on where in the world you are living, but if it's Toronto, you can join the staff of Lettuce Knit on the 8th for our special event.
Other excitement in Toronto can be found in the WWKIP day website listed below including a big group hang out in High Park on June 9th. Make sure you come and visit us out front of the store on Nassau Street either on the 8th, or any time during the WWKIP celebrations.
We'll be setting up chairs, providing refreshments and snacks. In case of inclement weather, we highly encourage knitters to take up their places in the many cafes and restaurants around Kensington Market.
Stitch-A-Thon reminder! Wool Aid & Warm Hands Network
May 11th -- 8:00 am - 8:00 pm we will be supporting Wool Aid and Warm Hands Network by hosting a Stitch-a-thon!
You are still welcome to sign up to knit in support of these amazing charities, feel free to call or email the shop to receive a pledge form. Knitters and crocheters alike are welcome to sit with us and knit items to keep people in need warm! Remember, items must be made of at least 80% wool! We will have our new Topsy Farm worsted wool for sale at cost for the day, or you can knit from your own stash. The Stitch-A-Thon will take place from 8:00 am to 8:00 pm on Saturday, May 11th.
If you can't participate in the Stitch-A-Thon but would like to sponsor a knitter/crocheter, just call the store or drop by with your donation!
Hello there! I'm Emily, the newest addition to the Lettuce Knit team. My grandmother taught me to crochet at a very young age and after making my first little granny square lap throw, I was hooked. Literally. Oh wow that was a horrible pun! Anyway, our very own Amelia taught me to knit just about 7 years ago and introduced me to the wonderful world of indie fibre. I have been a long time customer of Lettuce Knit and always thought that it would be such fun to work at a shop like that. Turns out, I was right! I love to meet new people and share my love of colour, fibre and design with anyone who will listen.
A few more getting to know you fun facts: I have an overwhelming love for anything purple. And all saturated colours, really. But in a draw, purple will win. I have great fun finding the perfect colourway to make a project really pop, or the perfect project to show off any one of the gorgeous yarns we have. I love to bake and rarely start any recipe before 10:30pm. Favourite yarns (so far): Socks that Rock (what incredible colour!), The Yarns of Rhichard Devrieze (again, colour!), and IndigoDragonfly. Really clever colourway names. On the needles/hook right now? Flying Diamonds Shawl (in one of Rhichard Devrieze's speckled blues) and the Cap Sleeve Lattice Top from Purl Bee in some tasty Madelinetosh.
Thanks for listening and looking forward to meeting you!
Don't forget to check out the great classes we have scheduled!
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