Monday, December 5, 2011

My Flock grows....

Wow!  We have been busy getting penguins out to all of you who have ordered after the TV3 News appearance.  Stocks of Flip are now exhausted - so to get prepared to Christmas & the premiere of a certain Penguin animated movie, we have got in stocks of friends for Flip.

Peggy has now arrived - she super sweet & super soft - totally squeezable!
Peggy just loves cuddles!

To keep Peggy company we have found Caesar.  He's an Emperor Penguin with attitude & hates being left out. He has been seen mincing about the shop complaining that noone has sewn any sequins onto the jumpers as he likes to stand out in the flock!  He's a little bigger & bolder & has a series of jumpers just for him!  I hear he also likes to dance!

Caesar is a party Penguin, he's loves to get down & boogie!

They are available now - so still stuck on those Christmas gifts?

Tuesday, November 29, 2011


Just when I thought everything had completely died away with the penguin project TV3 cropped yesterday wanting a follow up story.  Huge ups to them for following the story up & here's hopefully it sparks even more Flip sales & more donations to the fund!

View the story Here.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Come Together.

Mum & I travelled to Nelson for my cousins wedding.
The last month really has been a blur.  All things penguin has consumed my life, throw into the mix Louis starting school (again) and more travel than I have done in 6 months all in all a very busy time.

What has been nice is that this week I have been able to take stock a little, rest, reassess & pause to prepare for the festive season ahead.

Firstly a recap on the month that was:
Penguins, penguins, penguins.  I was interviewed by Google NYC a couple of weeks ago about the entire event & they challenged me to 'Google' it & have a look at what was out there.  I finally plucked up the courage yesterday.

This is what I found on You Tube, great story.  I knew nothing about it despite featuring in it (looking like Shamoo) - no wonder dozens of jumpers are turning up on my desk everyday!  I honesty have felt a little like Alice falling down the rabbit hole into Wonderland.  What is great now though, is that the Skeinz Penguin Rescue Fund is going great guns, with sales of the Flip Penguins & Jumpers both very strong, boosted by 20c a ball from Urban sales as well.

Catching up with the cuzzies at the Nelson wedding. 
I also travelled to Nelson with Mum for my cousins wedding.  Lovely to get back to that part of the world & catch up with dear friends & family - a lovely start to the festive season.  The family shot up to visit the inlaws in Taupo - one of our favourite places.

The stripy Erika Knight cosy that won at the A&P Show.
I have also managed to knit - not as much as I would like, but I had a mad flurry finishing of projects to enter into the Hawkes Bay A&P Show (and penguin PJ's obviously!).  I was delighted to learn that every entry won or placed, a triumph for modern knitting!  I have had a swathe of samples for work to complete, but am now back to knitting for pleasure & the family.

So what's ahead?  This year Dr. Phil & I have decided to re-embrace camping.  We both camped as children & now that our boys are of an age where independence, discovery & no nappy's are all on the cards the timing seemed right.  That's what I love about the age the boys are at now - give them a beach & they're happy!  I can just see the posts in my future... 'Tales from the camp...'

Friends, Wine, Candlelight - Perfect!
What I also love about this time of year is a chance to casually get together with good friends on a regular basis, sharing meals, enjoying good company, wine, food & just appreciating what we have right on our doorstep. Joy.

Friday, October 28, 2011

Meet Flip & Peggy

Peggy (in pink) & Flip (in formal attire) are the new faces of our charitable jumper drive.
Today has been very exciting as the first international jumpers arrived at Skeinz. Five parcels from the US & two from the UK.  It was like Christmas opening them up & seeing the stunning jumpers inside, all made in yarns that are quite exotic to this part of the world!

Some of the recent arrivals.
I have been busy over the past few days gathering information & research about the "where to from here" with the surplus jumpers we have.

First port of call was Lyn from The Penguin Foundation at Phillip Island in Australia.  She was involved with the co-ordination for the jumpers received at Phillip Island (Outside of Melbourne). She told me how the Tasmanian Rescue Team working the the Tasmanian spill in 2002  received 14,000 jumpers before they managed to get knitters to stop & back on Phillip Island, Lyn had to hire additional space to house all theirs!!  Her insights were inspiring & so valuable.

We are wanting to make sure that here at Skeinz we are able to take the surplus jumpers and have them utilized within the spirit & generosity to which they are intended.  Lyn had the same challenge in 2002 & the model she used is one we have chosen to adopt.

As no more penguin jumpers are required for the Rena effected penguins in Tauranga our focus has shifted to how we can use the jumpers to generate cash, to then donate back to the people working at the grass roots of the disaster.

Using the Penguin Foundation model - Skeinz is setting up a special charitable trust.  Then using the power of our webstore & all of you, we have sourced from a local supplier scale sized little blue penguin toys to place in the jumpers & we will be selling these at with all the proceeds of the jumper being funneled back into the charitable trust.  This has been so successful in Australia that The Penguin Foundation has recently donated $350,000 AUD back to a new penguin research centre, plus other research for penguins through Victoria University (Australia) for penguin clean up.

So the next challenge has been finding the best way to get donations directly back to the penguins & effected shorebirds of this disaster.  As the local & national government bodies are pursuing costs against Rena's insurers, I have been researching other angles to make sure we can filter the funds directly & effectively.

NZ Forest & Bird is a NGO that has been protecting the bird life of NZ from generations.  They are one of the most well respected environmental groups here in NZ & have fabric of paid & volunteer workers across the country.  They have a special Bay Of Plenty Shorebird fund, which has been helping nesting shorebirds that fall in the effected area.  So all monies donated to this fund go back the the birds, especially the penguins harmed by the Rena.
We have also been looking for a Little Blue Penguin specific cause - and we have approached another charitable trust who have been working with a nesting programme for the little blues.  Details there are still to be confirmed & I will update when the come to hand.

Your comments have also helped us in feeling we are on the right track with this - so thank you for all your feedback.  If haven't yet started a jumper, but feel happy about knitting one for it to be sold towards this cause, please by all means send them to us.  For the crocheters out there a pattern has been published on Ravelry - I just need to contact the author for permission to publish. 

Once we have all the details in place, the birds in stock, we will place them on for sale.  All jumpers which have come with personal notes & cards, these will be passed onto as well.  Many of you have also popped your email details - I will do my very best to email you all back in way of thanks.
Take care & I will be in touch again very soon - oh & Flip (the bird we have ordered initially) has his very own authentic little blue penguin sound - it's sooooo adorable!

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Just Beautiful

Waxeye on Kowhai in my friends Wellington garden.
In the middle of all the penguin madness I was actually away from home.  Firstly Dr.Phil, the buys' & I went to Wellington to catch up with family & friends & laterly I have been in Gisborne with the boys' having a Spring Break whilst Dr. Phil has been away conferencing.

This years crop of cherry blossoms

 I spent much of my time away chained to a computer wading through all the penguin related email - to date over 2000.  All penguin updates can be found here.  One of the best things about returning home is seeing my Spring time garden - so until I have more time to write a more indept post - just enjoy some lovliness of Spring.
My favourite Dublin Bay climbing Rose

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Going Viral

Jumper anyone?
I have just arrived home briefly & called into Skeinz to see all the pengiun jumpers for myself.
I feel really guilty as I created this media & internet 'penguin storm' & then I bugger off on holiday!
For my pennance I got nabbed whilst there & ended up being interviewed by TV3 News - I will post the link once the interview has aired tonight, I look an absolute fright - after 5 hours in the car, not a scrap of make-up except a quick last of lipgloss & poor Dr. Phil, the boys & Max all in the car wondering what on earth is taking me so long!

The TV3 Cameraman getting some set up shots for tonights news
After all this I think I need another holiday - roll on the Gisborne Wine & Food Festival & the 'Cup of World Rugby' final!

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Penguin Power

Thanks to Charlie - a Skeinz regular for knitting up this jumper & supplying the picture.
As you may be aware the oil spill & potential disastrous effects to wildlife & environment off the coast of Tauranga is frightening.  A small number of little blue penguins have already been caught in the oil spilled to date with growing fears that more will be effected. Skeinz has been asked to help with the penguin relief by knitting small Penguin PJ’s to help protect the birds & prevent them from preening their feather & ingesting the toxic oil. 

If you can help out by knitting a penguin jumper – send them to Skeinz at 5 Husheer Place, PO Box 3123, Onekawa, Napier 4142

These have come into the shop today
Penguin Jumper in 8ply  - Must be 100% Wool Yarn1 pair 3.25mm , 1 pair of 3.75mm needles , 1 set of 3.25mm dpn’s or circular
Cast on 36 stitches using 3.25 needles.K1, P1 to end of row. Repeat this row 7 times.  Change to 3.75mm needles and K2, P2 rib. Work 4 rows increasing at each end of every row. (44 sts)
Continue until work measures 15 cms.
Decrease 1 st at each end of every row until 28 sts remain.
Decrease 1 st. in middle of next row (27 sts.)
Leave on needle.
Make second side the same.
Transfer the 54 sts from both pieces to 3 of the set of 4 3.25mm needles.(18 sts on each.) and work a round neck in K1 P1 rib for 10 rows.
Cast off.
Stitch up sides to decreasing to 27sts (opening for flipper). Add elastic to the top and bottom to prevent the penguins getting out of them. Top: 15cm of elastic; bottom 17 cm (knots allowed). Flat elastic OK.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

That Cup of World Rugby

Louis & Hugo got me to set this up for the CoWR duration
It's really quite funny how infectious all this Rugby fervor can be.  I had been so busy with all the lead up to KAN any thoughts to the impending 'Cup of World Rugby' or CoWR sort of passed me by.  Now if you think I might have me events mixed up - I have to be very careful, the NZRFU & IRB have teams scouring all forms of media for people who are trying to cash in on, you know, the Cup of World Rugby - so CoWR it is.
Louis getting in his tackling practice

Napier is the host of the Canadians during their stay in NZ - in fact they are staying just down the road from me. Ahuriri is groaning with fervent fans, flags are flying in support of the three teams that are appearing here (Canada, France & Japan) & AB's flags are everywhere you look - all this CoWR fever is quite infectious.

Louis loves Rugby

It hasn't escaped the notice of Louis & Hugo.  Their pre-school has had rugby themed parties & rugby is featured everywhere. Dr. Phil has gotten in on the act & has been taking the kids down to the local park to play Rugby - Louis just loves any excuse to run, run, run. Every time we see a black fern flag or they see the haka, they get all excited 'Wrugby Muuummy - Oar Blacks!' will exclaim Hugo.

The HitchHiker that has been frogged more than French!
I have to say I have now gotten the bug too.  I have watched more rugby in the past 10 days than I have in years & more importantly, I have ENJOYED it!  I have some rugby projects all sorted - so far a Capelet has been knocked out & the HitchHiker scarf I have on the needles are both getting plenty of knit time - the only problem is the random dropping of stitches when I leap up from the couch to cheer manically at athletic men wearing tight clothing run up & down.  Seriously during the Irish game the other night I had to stop knitting & then frog back because once the excitement died down I realised my tension had been shot to shit & I had more holes than the Australian back line!

I've got Tonga & Japan up next & I am going to watch Japan against the Canadians next week - may I need to knock up something red & white for the occasion?

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

In the KAN

It's been a little over a week since the conclusion of KAN:2 & I am just now gathering my breath.  KAN:2 was nearly double the size of it's original - it was great to welcome back old friends, make new ones & for me finally meet so many that I communicate this on a professional basis in the 'flesh'.
What a cracking looking bunch!

This year saw more traders, a wider variety of fiberous wonders & more workshops.  I have to say the business at the Friday traders market was brisk with many items selling out before they had a chance to be viewed by the wider public!  I was one of the lucky one to snaffle the HiyaHiya Dumpling Stitch makers & case from Yarnz - seriously cute.  I also indulged by passion for colour with a selection of yarn which reflected the colour palette in my wardrobe - with the exception of the muted natural tonings of the 'Slate' colourway from Fibre Alive (formally JOY) - purchased especially for Louis next prehistoric inspired Milo for next Winter.  I indulged my love of deep vamperish reds from Morag at Vintage Purls - I so see a set of fingerless gloves coming on...

Many of these red skeins found there way home with me!
Merino Mania proving you can make more than socks from sock yarn.

I have also purchased far too much sock yarn - did you know I have yet to actually make a pair of socks from all this yarn!!  I went for colours which I use to accessorise & have just purchased a new shawlette pattern fron NZ designer Gabriella Henry called Faultline, so I am itching to get yarn wound off & cast on.
Looking studious at Morags workshop

There is a great thread on the Ravelry Knit August Nights board called "Things I Learned at KAN:2". Make sure you check it out or contribute.  What did I learn? 
  • Well there is no such thing as wearing or owning too much orange (Thank you Dee)
  • I have fallen in love with my drop spindle (Thank you Frances).
  • Sometimes you just need a kick in the pants with your design brain - just shift your thinking 10 degrees to create something amazing (Thank you Nanette)
  • Face your fear & attack your knitting with scissors - even if you manage to unravel it through your steek - it is worth it all in the end! (Thank you Stella)
  • When it all started gets a little too overwhelming, just take a deep breath & find Win.
  • Polly Rocks!

Nanette showing off the design which was a revelation for me.
I just want to take a little time to thank all those who not only attended KAN:2, but the traders, tutors & KAN supporters that helped support, promote & provide encouragement for the event.  I concede it is a big job, one I thoroughly enjoy. Next year is already in the pipeline - so make sure you pencil in the last weekend of August 2012 & add the KAN website into your favourites.  If you want to check out more images from KAN:2 - have a look at the KAN:2 set here.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

KAN:2 Countdown!

Great Publicity for KAN:2!
It's 24 hours until KAN:2 gets underway - the Southern contingent of KANannites are in the air & on their way - I am madly getting all my last minute details together.  We have had some great support from local media - thanks for the Napier Courier who have seen the 'coolness' in knitting & have me donning the front page of this weeks edition! Let KAN:2 Begin!

Monday, August 15, 2011

Cosy Up!

Hugo gives you a good idea of the scale of the job!
Several hardy should braved the weather to get the first Napier Tree Cosy installation up on Sunday - I was sneaky & went in on the finer Saturday morning with Dr.Phil & the boys & got up the 5 in my care.  I have to say my wee cosies pale in comparison to some - I hope to get back into town the first fine day & photograph all of them - they are truly amazing!

Sunday, July 24, 2011

In a Spin

My new Rustic Ever Afters & the last of the Silver Gotland, Swiftly spun (well at least) wound up!
Winter has finally taken a decent bite out of Hawkes Bay.  It has been an eclectic mix of bitterly cold, with icy winds off the snow covered ranges or wet grey weather that just begs you to stay indoors & knit.
The completed Dorian Hitchhiker

I have managed to get a few loose ends tied up in recent weeks.  The Dorian Hitchhiker scarf, which has been my lazy TV knitting is now finally finished.  Done in dreamy 4ply alpaca it has already had several outings.  I also have been doing a pile of samplers & swatches for Skeinz & for contract spins & have had time to knock out another pair of Ever After gauntlets for myself in rustic browns this week.
The Moondance Sampler

I am now on the homeward stretch on my Fern Shell & even have been tinkering wit a little crochet.  What comes of the latter I have no idea, but I have been getting myself quite hooked up with a series of scraps & have enjoyed the change of pace away from the needles.

Crochet Anyone?
It just never ceases to amaze me that there is always someone or something to knit for.  My aunt had a very significant birthday last week & I have promised her a pair of fingerless gloves in the matching yarn to her Sunday Market Shawl I knitted her last year - so I got myself a little wound up this afternoon during the gloom & wound off the last skein or silver gotland & also the bag lot of Naturally Sensation angora blend I have been collecting to knit (or it's looking now very likely - crochet) a blanket from.  there is something surprisingly satisfying it setting a swift ablaze & winding off a multitude of yarn.

August is fast approaching & it's Knit nirvana with the Napier tree cosy installation picking up pace & of course KAN:2.  I have had a little publicity around the Tree cosies & I am hoping to drum up some more for the KAN:2 Knitters Market & the remaining workshops available.  If you wish to register for either of these events - make sure you drop me a line ASAP!  Time to stop blogging & keep knitting!
Smile!  Me, keeping one of my trees cosy.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Rapture & Raptors

Louis wearing his new 'Dino Skin' jumper.
There is one fact about Louis, my oldest, which is never in doubt.  Louis Loves Dinosaurs.  This isn't just a passing childhood phase, its a fully blown, Cretaceous sized obsession with dinosaurs.  It started three years ago when for his third birthday his Auntie "Teesha" gave him a couple of small dinosaurs books & his first dinosaur toy - a blue Parasaurophalus.  I should have known I was in trouble then. Louis wasn't just content knowing that this toy was mearly a dinosaur, but had to know when & where it lived, what it was called & ever other fact he could find. 
Fast forward two years & we have the Louis the paleontologist in waiting.  So when the BBC's Walking with Dinosaurs arena show was scheduled to hit Auckland it was a no brainer to see whether we could swing it to visit.
The WWD Utahraptors - Louis Favourite.

Preparations were vigorous.  We deliberately didn't tell Louis we were going until the day before we flew out, but I get prepared by knitting him a special 'Dino Skin' jumper to wear to the show & making sure all his favourite dino shirts were laundered & packed.  Once we did break the new the endless questions started:
"Will they have a Velociraptor Mummy?" 
"How did they find the Dino's Mummy?"
"Will the dinosaurs talk to me Mummy?
"Can we take a Dino home Mummy?"
"Can I take ALL my Dino's Mummy?"

Louis & Hugo get prepped for WWD

Needless to say having such a powerful incentive his behaviour over the weekend was amazing & he just adored the show - on the edge of his seat the entire time.  If you can manage to make it before it closes - go, it is truly spectacular!

I also needed some nice easy mindless knitting for the trip away & for the plane - so I took the three balls of bright Skeinz Circus Louis had selected for another 'Dino Camoflague' jumper.  I whipped it up in record time & he has now dubbed it his 'Utahraptor Jumper' - did I mention earlier that this kid was obsessed?

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Ooh La La!

Would it be crass to give the tree tits?
This is my next installment from the tree cosy installation happening in Napier in August - it was great fun mixing up the weights of yarn, vibrant colours & switching between knitting & crochet.

Inspired by the Can Can dresses of Paris, I thought this will be a little bit of frivolity for the palm trees that grace the main street of a town where Art Deco is worshipped.  If you are interested in adopting a tree & becoming part of the installation email me at Skeinz.

Hugo looks quite fetching in the impromtu crochet tam.
Also whilst I have been fiddling around with a little Crochet, I bought a learn to crochet book to sharpen up my skills.  After a few whiskys on Friday night & some trashy TV, my crochet circle went from being a furniture cover, to a bag, to a hat!  Not a bad result & a thoroughly entertaining journey!

Friday, June 10, 2011

Getting Cosy

Christine from Creative Napier gives our tree some adoptive love.
I have been blown away with the overwhelming response I have had to Knit August Nights, I am now about 80% subscribed for the retreat & three workshops are getting close to being sold out. So if you haven't registered yet, get your skates on & register here.

It's not a Sea Anenome, but a Tree Anenome!

To make August a truly yarn occasion I have been working with Creative Napier & Napier Inner City Marketing on a special yarn based art initiative. Napiers main CBD shopping street, Emerson, has 99 mature palm trees lining the length of the street. We are hoping to encourage individuals & groups to adopt these trees & knit, crochet or felt these lovely trees a 'Tree Cosy' to help keep them warm for the final two weeks of August.  Christine from Creative Napier & myself adopted the first tree making a special 'Tree Anenome' & I will also be adopting another tree & have created an Autumn inspired cosy which is on display at Skeinz.

Christine from Creative Napier & Meg from Napier Inner City Marketing dress our tree. 
That means if you are travelling to KAN:2, you can adopt a tree & then be able to see your adoptive tree child & cosy during the course of the installation. If you wish to adopt a tree drop me an email at Skeinz or call into the shop, we have adoption papers & a series of discount vouchers for yarn purchases.  The trees of Emerson need you!

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

KAN:2 - Getting Worked Up!

I know I have been a little silent - I have been wanting to keep the KAN teaser up for as long as possible - but I have soooo much to blog about & annoyingly so little time!  The good news is I have now finalised the workshops for KAN:2 & I am really excited to have 10 workshops confirmed across a wide variety of topics.  I just have a few last details ironed out, but for those who want to get their planning in place this is where I am so far....

James in last years Persion Poppies workshop

KAN:2 - Knit August Nights

Knitters Retreat in Historic Hawkes Bay

August 26th – 28th 2011

Hosted at Napiers iconic East Pier situated at the entrance of historic Port Ahuriri. Like any waterfront location Ahuriri is a vibrant village overflowing with cafes, bars, galleries, deli’s & Napier most famous landmark, the Art Deco Rothmans Building. The K.A.N:2 venue has unimpeded views onto Hawkes Bay & sits adjacent to the Harbour View Motor Lodge.

K.A.N Registrations are now open.
Email Maree for a Registration Form

‘Merino’ registration is $130 pp
This includes: Access to exclusive Traders Market, ONE workshop, Design Spun factory Tour & Skeinz shop visit, access for free knit time at East Pier, public traders market & a KAN goodie bag.

‘Alpaca’ registration is $200 pp
This includes: Access to exclusive Traders Market, TWO workshops, Design Spun factory tour & Skeinz shop visit, access for free knit time at East Pier, public traders market & a KAN goodie bag. PLUS the KAN Retreat Dinner & Awards on Saturday Night. East Pier is a landmark Napier Eatery & will be providing a three course dinner designed especially for KAN (drinks own care).

‘Cashmere’ registration is $230 pp
This includes: Access to exclusive Traders Market, THREE workshops, access for free knit time at East Pier, public traders market & a KAN goodie bag. PLUS the KAN Retreat Dinner & Awards on Saturday Night. East Pier is a landmark Napier Eatery & will be providing a three course dinner designed especially for KAN (drinks own care).


KAN’s preferred accommodation provider is Harbour View Motor Lodge. Call toll free 0800 668 432 or – Hosts George & Zoe.

This year I am encouraging retreat goers to arrange their own accommodation. I have a number of rooms set aside for Retreat goers at discounted rates – these are booked under ‘Maree’s Knitters’. I am setting up an accommodation thread on the Ravelry KAN group for people to arrange their own roomies, prices & room configurations will be there. If you get stuck, email me & I will help get you placed with other retreaters.

Other accommodation options within walking distance from the venue.
The Crown Hotel – 06 833 8300 or
Portside Inn & Backpackers – 06 833 7292
Anchorage Motor Lodge – 0800 422 266 or
Bluewater Hotel – 06 835 8668 or
Also check out & enter ‘Ahuriri’ into your search.

Ahuriri is located close by to the airport. Average taxi fare is $15 there is also a Napier based Super Shuttle

KAN:2 Workshops

Friday Afternoon 3pm – 5.30/6pm

Mastering Entrelac - Susan Hagedorn will be demystifying this alluring style, Entrelac is a knitting technique that creates a stunning textured plaited or diamond patterns. Entrelac can be knitted flat or in the round, often using colour or textured stitches to create different patterns and effects. This workshop will introduce the method of knitting squares and triangles in different orientations to make textured fabric. The technique can be adapted for use in garments, blankets, bags and accessories. Skills required for this Entrelac Workshop are ability to k2tog, p2tog and pick up stitches knitwise and purlwise. Ideal for advanced beginners upwards.

Getting set from the Top Down -  Turn traditions on their head when you learn how to master top-down seamless set-in sleeve construction. Seen more and more, a technique that is a revelation to your knitting style once mastered.  Morag  McKenzie is one of NZ’s most accomplished tutors & the owner of Vintage Purls yarn boutique.  This workshop is excellent for people who have started working in the round & want to expand the technique or those budding designers who want to sharpen up on the hottest design trend of the last few years. Knit a mini jersey that gives you all the skills to translate into a garment for yourself.  Get the right fit and never sew in a sleeve again. Intermediate – Experienced knitters.

It’s Hip to be Square - Nanette Cormack from Yarnz works her magic with colour & translates modular quilting ideas into knitting. A great workshop if you love colour and have plenty of unused stash to transform into something wonderful. This workshop is very satisfying as the techniques are easy to learn & you can achieve a great deal in a short time. You just need to know how to knit, purl - great for beginners upwards.

Saturday Morning 10am – 12.00/12.30pm

Discover Area 51 - Nanette will give you the chance to clear out those UFO’s & help motivate you to complete them or redesign them into something new. She will help inspire & guide you around online searches & other resources. This is the perfect time to dig out those project bags gathering dust & reinvigorate them, or alternatively if you have yarn burning a hole in your stash but struggling to find an ideal pattern this is the session for you. A very relaxed low key session, knit, chat, search, brainstorm all over some coffee & cake. – Beginners upwards.

Knitting with Unspun Fibre - Why should the spinners have all the fun?! Beautiful handyed spinning fibres can be used as yarn, and the knitting can then be stabilised by felting. Learn how to prepare hand dyed top for knitting, make a project or two and take away a piece of knitting ready to felt. We will also explore knitting with silk hankies. The tutor will provide: 115g merino top, a silk hanky and full instructions and patterns for you to take away. Extra fibre will also be available for purchase. You need to bring: 10mm needles (80+cm circular if possible), darning needle, scissors. About the Tutor - By day Jessicah works in a microbiology lab, by night she hand dyes fibre and yarn in her home studio as Spinning a Yarn. She can usually be found surrounded by multiple projects in various stages of completion.

Knit to Fit - Sick & tired of starting a large project, especially for yourself, toiling away for months only to finish it & be completely disappointed by the results! This is the workshop for you, after a couple of hours here you can feel confident in: Finding patterns to suit different body types. Explore examples of what a pattern fails to tell you. How & why patterns will not fit & making the necessary adjustments so that it will!
Lyn Adell’s passion for knitwear shows in her creations. Read & see more of Lyn Adells creations here at her website. Beginners Upwards.

Saturday Afternoon 3pm – 5.30/6.00pm

Drop Spindling - Hot from Homemade in Wellington, Frances Stachl will take her very popular Drop spindling tutorial. Learn this ancient technique that will have you make yarn right before your eyes. She will be bringing some of her stunning hand crafted spindles to KAN - works of art on their own! You’ll need to book quickly for this tutorial, interest is already very hot! – All skill levels.

Seeing Double - James Herbison will take you through the technique of knitting with two strands to create a reversible contrasting fabric - a wonderful technique to master for scarves, hats, wraps, bags, anything that you would like to have fully reversible. James will challenge you to stretch the boundaries for colour & design – James is a fun vibrant tutor, the hours will fly by! – Advanced Beginners upwards.

It’s a Wrap!Hand knitted shawls & wraps are one of the most popular accessories in fashion today.  Morag McKenzie will take you through traditional shapes (e.g. triangles, squares and circles) and other constructions. Examine how to fit stitch patterns into a chosen shape and the pros and cons of each. You'll learn the skills to build your own patterns and advice on the best yarn selection, stitch patterning & finishing for your vision.  Intermediate upwards.

Getting the Chop - Norwegian Steeking with Stella Lange. Imagine taking a pair of sharp pointy scissors and cutting into your hand knitting! Most hand knitting here in New Zealand is knit to shape using printed patterns as guides, but not all knitters shape their knitting that way. Many people shape their hand knitting by cutting, folding, neatening and picking up stitches. This is called Norwegian Steeking and is what we will be doing in this workshop. Yes cutting your first steek is at once exciting, scary, terrifying and full of danger – and some would say a rite of passage for any adventurous knitter. This workshop invites you to steek and finish samples using only the knitting tools you already have in your knit kit, yarn, darning needle, knitting needle, crochet hook, scissors. You will steek one knit sample and create two edges, finish one as a folded facing and the other with a knit on edging. During the class we will look at the various methods used to construct a steek and finish it in a garment, as well as ways of using steeks in general knit projects. Stella is a lecturer in Otago who is best known to Ravelers as knitfrogknit. She can be found musing away on her very entertaining blog - KAN:2 is very excited to be luring Stella so far north!

The Sunday Knitters Market

On Sunday morning (9am – 12pm) KAN will open to the public for a Sunday Knit Market. This will be extensively promoted through local media & retail outlets. We would love to have you take part. Stands are only $40 each & we provide one trestle table & a couple of chairs. Last year we saw hundreds of knitters flow through & plenty of traders going home with empty cases! Email Maree if you're interested.
I hope to have my very own KAN website up & running soon, so please bear with me if not all payment options are available immediately, but I know as many have to travel, it's good to get organized as early as possible.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

KAN:2 - Knit August Nights Two

Genny Stevens aka GrannyG hosts her very popular workshop at last years KAN.
I have been busy ferriting away in the background on the second Knit August Nights bespoke knitters retreat.  So far it looks like there will be 8 workshops to choose from, traders galore for the private retreat traders market on Friday & the public Knitters Market on Sunday.

Knit August Nights 2
August 26th – 28th 2011
East Pier, Ahuriri, Napier
Join Ravelry Group ‘Knit August Nights’ or email Maree  to register your interest.
Just a hint at what was available at the knitters market.

A chance to knit, learn & meet other knitterly individuals all whilst enjoying the delights of Art Deco Napier. Hosted in one of the most historic suburbs, Ahuriri, Knit August Nights is part retreat, part learning & part Winter escape. Spaces are very limited, so make sure you express your interest with Maree. So far eight workshops are planned, with a factory mill tour & a chance to shop at Skeinz – NZ largest mill factory store. All culminating it a knitters market open to the public Sunday morning. If you have items to sell at the market or wish to attend the retreat make sure you email Maree today.

KAN:2 is proud to have the support of...
Skeinz - The Natural Yarn Store
Vintage Purls - Sock yarn & premium accessories
Entangled - digital magazine (available soon)
JOY - Joy of Yarn Sock Boutique