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Let’s do some good

On Saturday week, September 27th, we crafters get a chance to make the world a wee bit better. HandmAid, the Dublin craft charity day, is having its fourth annual outing, from 10.30 am to 4.30pm, and everyone’s welcome!

Every year, HandmAid raises funds for a different charity. This year, the money raised goes to the Laura Lynn children’s hospice, which does astounding work for very ill children and their families. You can learn more about what they do at that link – like the rest of the hospice movement, Laura Lynn provides its services free of charge to families.

If you haven’t been to HandmAid before, it’s a day of craft and good will down the granite steps of the Damer Hall on Stephen’s Green (there’s directions at this link):

At the bottom of the stairs, there’s a big room simply full of delight. You can take a class (there’s a huge range of classes from origami to wheel spinning, and you can book online at this link), you can enjoy tea or coffee and bake-sale cake while you can sit and stitch with friends…

…and there’s a huge heaping market stall: there’s terrific yarn and craft supplies at extremely reduced prices (made possible by the generosity of many businesses and individuals), there’s paper patterns and books, there’s finished objects to buy…

And speaking of the market stall, This Is Knit is delighted to be a collection point for donations for it. If you have a contribution to make – those balls of lovely yarn that never found their true calling, the pattern books that would like a new home, the embroidery silks that languish, those finished objects that will help make a difference – drop it in before Monday and we’ll get it to HandmAid.

Most of all, come along on Saturday week. You’ll be making the world a bit better.

All photos in this post are the work of Julie of halfadreamaway.com, © handmAid, and used with permission.

So in love

Last Friday evening, a lot of lovely people gathered in the loft in the Powerscourt Centre for our Yarn Dating, and it was an awful lot of fun! And oh! the yarn: new offerings from Juniper Moon, Noro, Townhouse Yarns, Debbie Bliss, Dublin Dye Company, Louisa Harding…the list goes on and on!

There were yarn stations set up for our new offerings, each with yarn to test knit or crochet, sample garments to try on, pattern books to look through and shade cards to plan with…

(and love hearts!)

Each group of hopeful knitters and crocheters got five minutes with a possible dream yarn date, before the timer whisked them on to the next alluring prospect. The oohs! and aahs! had to be heard to be believed!

As the dates proceeded, dance cards were filled up for the coming months, helped by handy little memos for keeping track of desirable candidates.

You’re the One that I Want and Eternal Flame were among the chosen tunes to create an undeniably cheesy yet romantic mood, with The Sultans of Ping’s Where’s Me Jumper? sneaking boldly in right at the end of the speed-dating section. And then it was back down to the shop.

(The shop’s had a bit of a spruce-up recently – we’ll tell you more in a later post.) The yarn dating had focussed mainly on completely new stock, so this was a chance to see new shades of old friends as well as to place orders for what had won our hearts earlier.

(That’s a new and exclusive colour of Dublin Dye Company Swing Sock – we can’t wait to tell you about that too!)

Friday night was exactly what makes us happy at This Is Knit: the chance to help our wonderful customers meet yarn that will make you happy for ages to come. It’s what we love. Thank you for coming along!

Our favourite night of the year will be happening again on Friday August 29th. Believe it or not, this is the sixth year that we’ve asked you to join us for an evening of yarn sampling, so we’ve decided to shake things up a little. This time, instead of Yarn Tasting, we’re going Yarn Dating!

Gone are the tiny sample balls but they’re being replaced by a fun new format that will ensure you are introduced to all your potential yarn suitors, while enjoying a bit more chat and possibly even a small dose of mayhem!

Refreshments, raffle prizes and excellent special offers will still be part of the night, so click here to reserve a place to join us and find the yarn of your dreams….

It’s Scavenger Hunt time! Until next Sunday, it’s World Wide Knit in Public Week, and there are This Is Knit customers all over the place, snapping pictures of their knitting and crochet.

You can find details of the competition here, and this is the Ravelry thread for posting your images. But we’ve promised you a look at the prizes, so here goes!

We’re giving away €250 worth of goodies, and there’s prizes for first, second and third place. Up at the top of the page you can see First Prize – a mouthwatering collection of three skeins of Malabrigo Rios, a dreamy skein of chunky alpaca from Coolree Yarns, an exclusive shawl pin designed by Eimear Earley, a starter set of Knitpro “Dreamz”needles, a darling set of cleverly shaped scissors, a packet of Maria’s beautiful jewelled stitch markers, yarn needles, a set of sweet metal “handmade” tags and the dotiest wee crocheted jumper dangling from a keyring.

For second place, look at these gorgeous things: a skein of This Is Knit’s exclusive “Powerscourt” colourway in Hedgehog Fibres Sock, a skein of Mirasol Sami, five balls of Navia Duo and an excellent Navia pattern book.

And for third place, you can win a colourful basket of yarn from Noro (that’s Silk Garden 4-ply in there), Louisa Harding Noema and Sublime Baby Bamboo, together with some Mirasol Paqu Pura.

Our prize, though, is seeing your pictures! So grab your knitting, your flyer, the list of challenges and your camera, and let your imagination run with it! The competition thread on Ravelry is open until Sunday next at midnight, so you’ve plenty of time to throw your (knitted) hat in the ring!

There’s chatter all over the place about our Scavenger Hunt, even though the picture-posting doesn’t start until Monday. Over on twitter, for example, there’s a sudden interest in unicycles….

We promised you a how-to for editing a Ravelry post to add additional pictures, and here you are! (This is also useful for when you want to go back and add to any post over there to change a word or give more information.)

To begin with, get your new picture up in a project page, just as described in this blog post. You’ve made a post in the Scavenger Hunt thread already, so go there and look at the bottom right hand corner of your post. You’ll see a button marked “edit” (there’s also a “delete” button which will get rid of your post entirely and a “reply” button too, but you won’t be using them for adding a picture).

When you click on “edit”, you’ll be brought to a screen that looks like this:

You’ll want to add your new picture and the text that describes its challenge and claims your new points here. You can do this in any order – here we’ve added the text first, and the next stage is to put the new picture in. The picture will show up wherever your cursor is – the big pink arrow’s pointing to it in our image below:

Now you just need to tell Ravelry to show your new picture, so click on the “Polaroid picture” in the row of little icons above the screen:

You’ll be offered a number of options – you want to choose “use a project or stash photo”:

You’re very nearly done, but first you want to check that your edited post looks just like you intend. Well, that’s what the preview button in the top right hand corner is for:

Clicking on that will let you see what your post’s going to look like, and then clicking anywhere on the preview will make it go away again. So check your post, make any changes you like, and then click on “save changes”:

And then your edited post appears, and you can be sure you’ll be awarded the new points you’re claiming!

Now to find a unicycle…!

There’s quite a buzz at the counter and online about the WWKiP Scavenger Hunt. A lot of you will be using smartphones to take your pictures, so a few hints on getting them from the phone to Ravelry might be useful.

You’ll find the main Ravelry wiki page on uploading pictures at this link. There’s lots of different options, and back in this blog post you can read the This Is Knit tutorial on posting pictures to a project page from a desktop or laptop and then linking to the images.

If you’re using a smartphone, the process is a little different, though just as straightforward. There’s very little difference between iPhone and Android devices here. Setting up a project page is the same simple process: clicking on “projects” in “my notebook” gives you the option of starting a new page. All the fields are simple to fill in (yarn, pattern used, hook or needles and so on).

When you’ve set your project page, go to town taking pictures of your lovely creation! When you’re ready to upload your pictures, simply go to the Ravelry project page on the phone, and click on the white “add photos” tab near the top.

On the page that appears, select the “upload from iPhone camera roll” tab. If you’re using an Android phone, the tab reads “upload from Android device” (and that’s the only difference you’ll encounter).

Then click on “choose photos”, and you’ll be brought straight to your photos folder on your phone.

Pick the images you want to upload and click “done”. You’ll be brought back to the upload page on Ravelry, where once you select “upload”, your picture will appear beside your project notes. Tada!

Adding your picture to a forum thread from there is simple (and this blog post walks you through it).

Being able to shoot in the field and post straight into the Scavenger Hunt thread makes the whole thing seamless (and round here, “seamless” is one of our favourite words!).

As we move into the Bank Holiday weekend, here’s a reminder that we’re open as normal on Saturday May 31st and closed on Sunday and Bank Holiday Monday. But there’s plenty of time yet to avail of our 8th Birthday celebration offer!

Summer’s here, and round here that means World Wide Knit in Public Day!

It’s always a huge lot of fun (a whole week of it) with special events happening all over the world, and this year you can win prizes from This Is Knit in our WWKiP Picture Scavenger Hunt!

All you have to do is take pictures of a current knitting or crochet WIP out and about, and post them in a thread in our Ravelry group. We’ll be giving you a list of challenges to shoot – like “at a supermarket check-out” (this isn’t really on the list). There’ll be ten challenges in total, and there’s points for each. Take as many as you can, and the person with the most points wins. It’s as simple as that!

We’ll announce the challenges on Monday 9th June and you can post your pictures on any date between Saturday 14th and Sunday 22nd June. Over the next couple of weeks, we’ll be talking more about the logistics – how to get pictures from your phone to Ravelry, for instance. There’ll be a flyer to print out and display in each picture (it’ll also help to explain to passers-by what you’re doing!). So stay tuned for more details!

And the prizes? Well, there’s a prize pot of €250 worth of This Is Knit goodies on offer, and first, second and third prizes to win. So dust off the Canon or the phone or the Box Brownie. They’re going to get a workout!

We’re only barely containing our excitement at the moment – Ysolda Teague’s shawl design workshop is happening here in less than a month, on Saturday May 17th. There’s still a couple of places available, though there’s been a lot of interest. There’s even a group flying in specially from Scotland for the day!

When it comes to shawl design, Ysolda’s one of the greats (this is her portfolio). We’ve featured many of her designs, like lovely and popular Ishbel above, and elegant Marin below.

In this workshop she will give you the skills to make your own completely original shawl, just as lovely but completely exclusive to you! All you need is yarn, needles, squared paper, pencil and stitch markers – and your ideas!

You can snap up a place at this link, and then just imagine the thrill of saying “Oh this? It’s a design of my own, thank you!”

It’s nearly time!

We’re heading into St Patrick’s Festival this weekend, and it’s Cast On Time for our Spring Knit Along tomorrow. There’s been great excitement in the shop, choosing yarn and colour combinations, so we’re delighted to announce that we’re offering a 10% discount for the KAL across a whole range of lovely sportweight and fingering options.

This discount is available for the following yarns:

Malabrigo Arroyo
MillaMia
Debbie Bliss Baby Cashmerino
Noro Silk Garden 4-ply
Jamieson and Smith Jumper Weight
Fyberspates Scrumptious 4-ply
Navia Duo

To get your discount, just mention that you’re getting yarn for the KAL when you purchase your yarn, if you’re in the shop or on the phone. If you’re ordering online, simply enter “”KAL2014″ as a coupon code in your shopping basket.

There’s all sorts of discussion about the pattern and yarn choices in this stickied thread in the Ravelry This Is Knit group, so drop by and enjoy the fun and camaraderie there. Over the next couple of months we’ll have regular blog updates, and we can’t wait to see your progress!

And most of all, have a very happy Bank Holiday weekend!

It’s St Patrick’s Festival this coming weekend (hurray!) and we’ve got some changes to our usual Bank Holiday weekend opening hours.

We’re open on Saturday and Sunday as normal, but we’re closed on Monday March 17th itself.

So if you’re in town on Saturday or Sunday, drop by and say hello. The Powerscourt Centre’s all dressed up for the Festival and the Pepper Pot’s sure to be serving something special…!

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