Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Incoming: Lorna's

The nice folks at Lorna's Laces were kind enough to heed my pleas ("haalp! I'm low on sock yarn!") and send me some goodies that were sitting on their shelf. I'm expecting a small shipment of yarn on Friday. Not sure what's in the box (UPS says it's a 7 pounder). I'm guess it's a mixed bag of sock yarn, a mixed bag of Shepherd Sport, maybe a bag of sock yarn in Tahoe, and who knows what else. Stop by the store this weekend to find out what I got!


ps: I also placed a sizeable order of Shepherd Sock, Shepherd Worsted and Angel, along with a small sampling of Grace (boucle), Shepherd Sport, and Fisherman). It should arrive in eight weeks. Oh the pain.

Thursday, May 25, 2006

Did you say sale?

In case you didn't receive the newsletter, let it be known that there's a sale goin' on at the store.

Print out a copy of the newsletter to receive 10% any non-sale yarn in the store.

Rowan Big Wool is 40% off (Rowan is discontinuing some colors) Check out some of the stuff I'm making. Big wool is super soft, 100% merino. It's bulky, but there are so many beatiful patterns to make. Take advantage of the sale!

Some Blue Sky yarns are discounted, as well as Cascade 220 SUPERWASH. Rose-Kim Knits just made a pair of socks with the cascade superwash. Warren has some very beautiful heathered colors on sale. There's much more on sale, you've got to get to the store to see it all.

See you there!

Grenadine Girl

Thursday, May 11, 2006

Join The Knitting World Cup

Hello again Everyone,

In case you forgot, tonight is knit night. Come on by this evening, even just to say hello. We're always happy to see new and familiar faces.

Also I'm organizing The Knitting World Cup, a knit-a-long that starts on June 9th and runs during the Soccer World Cup. Not only will we be checking out the hot international soccer players we'll be knitting for a cause. Participants are required to either knit something for a knit charity or knit a personal project that can be sold on ebay with all proceeds going to Oxfam.

I'm going to buy one of Warren's Knit-for-her-cure kits from GGH. Proceeds from the sale of these kits go to the Gynecological Cancer Foundation. Eventhough the organization no longer producers these bags, Warren carries a selection of the kits designed by celebrities and noted knitware designers.

See you tonight,

Grenadine Girl

Monday, May 08, 2006

New Contributor

Hello All,

Grenadine Girl here. You may know me from my other blog The Crafty Girl is a Happy Girl. Anyhoo Warren has asked me to contribute from time to time with updates of stuff that's going on around the store and with fellow Marin Fiber Arts knitters and the like.

Considering that MFA is my second home, I think I'll have a lot to say about it. It's amazing how much the store has grown. Our first Knit night meetings were in Warren's living room!

Have you been in the store lately? Warren's sellable stash (aka W.S.S.) has been multiplying. He got in some variegated colors of Takhi Classic Cotton, some variegated colors of Cascade Sierra (the cotton/wool version of 220), and some lace weight yarn in the yummiest colors. There are also some new pattern books from Jo Sharp, Takhi and GGH.

If you haven't visited in a while, stop by on Thursday nights for the free knit night. The San Rafael Farmer's market makes parking a little difficult, but it's well worth the effort. Not only can you get the freshed local produce, flowers and international treats, but you can pet yarn.

Marin Fiber Arts is the Cheers of local yarn shops. It's the place where everyone knows your name and they're always glad you came.

Stop on by...

Grenadine Girl

Friday, May 05, 2006

Fruits of One's Labor

I have been hard at work designing and knitting garments for the store. My first fully-completed garment is pictured below. It is made out of Bouton d'Or's New Bamboo, a wonderful new yarn for spring/summer that comes in an amazing range of vibrant colors. This bamboo yarn is unique in that it's a viscose, which results in a stronger yarn that is highly resistant to wear and pilling. Because it's 100% bamboo, the garment has an amazingly silky feel and drapes beautifully.

The garment is a cap sleeve round-neck summer top with lace detailing along the bottom edge and the raglan sleeve edges. It's knit almost entirely in the round with virtually no seams to sew. The pictured top is a Small and took 7.2 balls to knit on size 7 needles. A knitter with intermediate skills should have no problem knitting this top.

I am currently proofreading the pattern and hope to have it finished by early next week.

As I wrote previously, my spiffy new sign is up and happily announcing to the world that I am here. Here you go, a spiffy picture of the spiffy sign.

Pretty spiffy, huh?

PS: the sign isn't really pink, it's burgundy.

Monday, May 01, 2006

Six Month Anniversary!

Yes, can you believe it? Marin Fiber Arts turned 6 months old on April 25th. It's been a fun ride so far, but not without a few bumps along the way, namely: the sign.

It took about 5 months to get a friggin' sign up, which went up about a month ago. The timeline goes something like this:

(NOTE: fictitious sign company names have been used to avoid public humiliation.)

The first company (The Disinterested Sign Company) was contacted back in early October and took forever to get us a quote for sign and installation. It seemed like once they found out how small the budget was, they lost interest.

They recommended a very small sign company (Joe Bob Signs) who again took a long time to ultimately lose interest and not return our calls.

We finally ended up with Slow Signs, who seemed willing to do the job. Several people (including the building management) recommended this company. But again, it took forever to get nowhere (seldom returning phone calls or emails, etc).

Then One Day in Late December, in the middle of a signage funk, a guy left his business card under my door - Local Psychotic Sign Guy. I called him up and he seemed VERY eager (I mean VERY eager) to make me a sign - at a good price. Cool. He needed the reference and was willing to do the job at a discounted price. We were in contact constantly. Once we firmed up a design, I had to get it approved by the City and the Landlord. That took about two weeks - smooth sailing. Meanwhile, Local Psychotic Sign Guy became increasingly vexed. 'Have you gotten approval yet? I want to get this done before we start work on The Big Job which will take all month.' Then Local Psychotic Sign Guy offered to provide the sign at half the quoted price if I developed a website for his small and growing sign company. Sure, trades are good! I worked up a small proposal and budgeted only $400 for my sign - what a deal! Yay. A week later, the guy tells me his boss changed his mind. He found someone else to do the website for free. In other words, he backed down on our verbal agreement. The sign will now cost me $750. Argh, there goes my budget! I was upset. On the other hand, I needed a sign. My response was OK but I'd have to hold off on the sign for a few weeks until I knew I had the extra cash. But I was fuming. A few days later I get a frantic phone call from Local Psychotic Sign Guy: "Can I come over and pick up the deposit NOW? I really need the cash!" Uhhhh, wassup with dat? Are you on the brink of bankruptcy? Need to pay off the drug dealer? Doesn't sound like a stable company, so I basically told him to go away.

What now? I decide to give Slow Signs a second chance. This time I marched into the darned place in person and said "Look. I need a sign NOW. Here is the design, exactly how I want it. Here is the city permit. Can you do it?" Astonishingly they said "Sure, no problem. We can have this up in a week. And it's only gonna cost $500." Uh, ok.

Yah riiight. It took about a week to simply MAKE the sign. A week(ish) later they come out to hang it, only to realize they need to rethink their plan. Not gonna work. Need to make a metal frame for the sign and mount the frame to the overhang. D'oh. Gonna take another week and another 500 bucks. Umm, have you _ever_ done this before? I'm beginning to hate sign people. But it will only take another week, they say. Two to three weeks later (groan), the installation guy comes to drill the holes in the overhang. He's up there on the ladder *trying* to drill holes into metal while the drill bit screeches and seizes up in the holes. Umm, have you _ever_ done this before? Are you really a professional sign installer? Doesn't look like it from my angle (a look of abject terror freezes his face as a drill bit flies out of the drill and hits the storefront window). Maya had to leave the building because the screeching sound of metal against metal made her small intestine seize up.

Magically, the next day, Friday, at 5:45 pm, the sign guy returns to install the sign! He wanted to get it done before he goes on vacation. Hurray, it's up in 15 minutes and it's beautiful! Now the world knows I'm at the back of the City Plaza in downtown San Rafael.

And there was much rejoicing.