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Yarn Blog


Stop by weekly and learn more about knitting and crocheting. We will discuss different types of yarn. We will share information for fiber arts projects.  

Summer Solstice Yarn Sale

June 20, 2018

Welcome summertime with a Piece of Ewe. Hopefully, the heat is not too much for you and all your knitting and crocheting projects. 

To celebrate the warm weather and sunshine, we would like to offer you progressive discounts throughout the day on Thursday, June 21st! 

Please grab a yellow bag before you shop to receive the correct discount for your arrival time.

 7 AM - 9 AM - 40% off
9 AM- 11 AM - 30% off
11 AM - 4 PM - 20% off     
 4 PM - 6 PM - 30% off        
 6 PM- 8 PM - 40% off 
,
We look forward to the longest day of the year with you! 

This sale is valid on in-stock merchandise only.  No rainchecks. Excludes gift certificates.  Cannot be combined with any other discounts. 

History of  Yarn


June 13, 2018

Have you ever wondered where yarn came from many years ago? No, we’re not talking about alpaca or sheep! We’re talking about where the idea of yarn came from! Let’s dive into this one, shall we?

Birth of spinning.

The art of spinning fiber into yarn is such an ancient art that the origins of it are truly unknown. In fact, the oldest known artifacts made with yarn were string skirts that dated back around 20,000 years ago. Around 5,000 BC, spindles started popping up. Even this was estimated to be around 1,000 years before the wheel was even invented! Do you see how ancient this art is truly is now? Though the first spindles were nothing more than straight sticks to wind the yarn onto, it progressed.

Enter the whorl.
According to CrochetRevolution.com, “A whorl is a weighted disk was added to the bottom of the spindle to make it spin longer and more steadily.” The whorl was an important advancement because it allowed you to spin longer strands of yarn before having to wind it up.

The invention of the spinning wheel really revolutionized yarn and textile production. No one knows when spinning wheels were truly created. It’s believed they originated in India between 500 AD and 1000 AD. These early spinning wheels are still used today, even! The invention of the spinning wheel sped up yarn production from 10 to 100 times.

Textile mills. 

Fast forward and we’re in the 1760s, where rapid innovations allowed for the first textile mills to be created. By 1780, steam power allowed these mills to be semi-automated. Of course, this grew and grew and spinning mules with 1,300 spindles at piece were at work.

We’ve come quite a long way! Now you don’t have to rely solely on mass-produced yarns. Crocheters and knitters alike can buy yarn from small, independent businesses, like A Piece of Ewe with the ability to spin yarn. We always love diving into the history of our craft, so stick around for more fun information soon!

Introducing Your Six Box Loyalty Program

June 4, 2018

A Piece of Ewe is very excited to launch your new customer loyalty program. It is a way for us to show appreciation to you, our customers for continuing to shop with us.  

How The 6-Box Program Works:

  1. Stop in and shop. When you bring your items to the register, we will sign you up using your loyalty program sign-up sheet (see image below).

  1. We will put your name on your loyalty program card (Last Name, First Name - see image below). Once your information is added, the card is filed in alphabetical order in one of our card files.

  1. Your new loyalty card contains a gift from us -- $25 purchase in the first box (see image below). We really appreciate your business! In addition, if you have a punch card that isn’t finished, don’t worry we will give you a credit for $10 for each punch on your card!

  1. Initially, you will get a WHITE card. Once filled out, the card is filed in alphabetical order in one of our card files in store. Stop in and make your purchases. Grab your card and bring it up with you to the register. You will get one box filled in for every time you shop. We will fill it in with your pre-tax purchase (Includes classes and sale items) amount. Once all six boxes have been filled out, we will total your purchases and you will earn 5% back.

For example, your first box is $25 (our gift to you), second box purchase is $30, third box purchase is $20,  fourth box purchase is $50, fifth box purchase is $25 and sixth box purchase is $50. Your total purchases equal $125, you will receive a gift certificate attached to your card for $6.25 for your next visit to our store. The more you spend the more you earn!

  1. Once you complete the white card, you will earn the BLUE card to complete six more boxes to earn 8% back on your purchases. You are moving up!

  1. But wait there’s more...once you complete the first two cards, you will receive a special gift from us! This super cool A Piece Of Ewe Bag (see image below)! And...if you complete three cards you will become one of our exclusive VIP members with private invitations to preview nights, special sales, and more. Keep an eye for more details in the near future!

2018 World Knit In Public Day - June 9th

May 31, 2018

We are hosting our 1st World Wide Knit in Public Day on Saturday, June 9, 2018, from 10 am - 2 pm.  Bring your own chair (there will be benches and picnic tables) and KNIT, CROCHET, WEAVE OR SPIN! COME HELP US TAKE OVER Battery Park next to City Market in Bay City! 

There will be coupons for local food vendors and giveaways. 

In 2017, there were 1125 Worldwide Knit in Public Day events in 54 countries. World Wide Knit in Public Day was started in 2005 by Danielle Landes as a way for knitters to come together and enjoy each other’s company.

Knitting can be such a solitary act that it’s easy to knit alone somewhere and sink into your work without thinking about all the other knitters out there. This day was set to get out of your house and go to a local event (with your knitting in tow) just for you and people like you.

Come to help us celebrate knitting and show others how fun it is!

That’s A Wrap!

May 24, 2018

We’ve all done it. That one colorway calls to us, and it doesn’t matter that we’re not fans of variegated or self-striping or
fine weight yarns. It’s immaterial that we’ve never knit a sock in our lives nor plan to start now. That fingering weight
bundle of gorgeous hits the top of the purchase pile…and we haven’t the slightest idea what will become of it.

Springtime brings the perfect opportunity to pull out those impulse buys. No strays in your stash? No problem! A Piece
of Ewe carries a full array of lighter weight yarns in a broad spectrum of colors, brands, and fibers. You don’t even have
to knit socks to enjoy them. In fact, today’s post highlights two patterns that’ll make people turn on their heels and take
notice every time you wear one.

The best part: you end up with a fantastic lightweight layer that stows easily in your bag, ready for sunset walks along
the water or the chill of an air-conditioned building.

Nearly 8,000 Ravelers have cast on Noora Laivola’s Reyna wrap since its release in June 2015. A simple mix of alternating
garter stitch and mesh sections, this design showcases variegated colorways and requires only one skein to complete.
Find it free of charge on Ravelry or in the store.

level: beginner

skills: cast on, bind off, knit, purl, eyelets
materials: US 4 needle, stitch markers, 380-420 yds. fingering weight yarn
Ewe’s pick: Mountain Colors Tall Ships in Montana, dyed exclusively for us
photo copyright: Noora Laivola




Ready to go a little spicier? Try the Bermuda Scarf by Canadian designer Ilga Leja, who says that “everybody’s version of
this pattern turns out differently as the colors play across the piece.” Access the pattern via Ravelry or the designer’s
website. Better yet, drop by A Piece of Ewe and let us help you pick supplies. We love to plot projects!

level: advanced intermediate

skills: cast on, bind off, knit, purl, eyelets, short rows
materials: US 7 needle, stitch markers, 766-853 yds. fingering or sport-weight yarn
Ewe’s pick: Noro Silk Garden Sock, Noro Taiyo Sock
photo copyright: ilgaleja.com

Cotton: It’s What’s for Summer

May 16, 2018

Now that winter’s finally leaving The Mitten, it’s time to get out from under those wool sweaters and blankets and throw lighter, cooler projects in the go bag. For warm-weather stitching, a great cotton yarn is hard to beat. Breathable, durable and hypoallergenic, cotton can be worn next to the skin without aggravating sensitivities, and its easy-care fabrics get softer with every wash. Every stitch pops brilliantly, and you can find dye lots in nearly any color under the sun.


Working with 100% cotton doesn’t limit you to dishcloths and coasters. A Piece of Ewe’s line of Ella Rae Phoenix DK Prints comes in fun self-striping colorways that make adorable baby sweaters and soakers, fun summer pouch purses and more. It also works well with the Knitted Knockers prosthesis pattern.


Cotton blends beautifully with other fibers, natural and manmade. Adding wool brings more memory to the fabric while keeping cotton’s stitch definition and pilling resistance.

In the store, look for: 

Sublime Eden DK (55% wool, 45% cotton)

Silk lends its shine and drape to reinforce cotton’s strength.

in the store, look for

Berroco Summer Silk (DK: 45% silk, 43% cotton, 12% nylon)

Noro Taiyo Sock (fingering: 50% cotton, 17% wool, 17% nylon, 16% silk)

Noro Taiyo (Aran: 40% cotton, 30% silk, 15% wool, 15% nylon)

Noro Kagayaki (worsted: 40% wool, 24% cotton, 18% silk, 18% viscose)

Synthetics add stretch, helping fabric keep its shape. They also lower the fabric’s weight and reduce drying time.

in the store, look for

Berroco Modern Cotton (worsted: 60% Pima cotton, 40% modal rayon)

Katia Top Rainbow (DK: 50% cotton, 50% acrylic)


Stop by A Piece of Ewe and let us help you find your perfect project for knitting through concerts-in-the-park, ball games, or the drive up north!


Ewe Tips

  • Use bamboo needles to keep slippery stitches in place while working.

  • Work a tighter gauge to create a denser fabric that’s less prone to sagging.

  • Take breaks and stretch hands and wrists to prevent fatigue.

  • Wash your swatch to predict fabric behavior and color bleeds – especially in stripes!

  • Split yarn and weave plies in several directions to hide ends.

Dream In Color Trunk Show Is Here! 

May 8, 2018

Do you dream in color? We do!

Come into our yarn store from May 8th until May 14th to check out our Dream in Color Trunk Show! We have so much beautiful yarn in that we can't fit it all in one spot in the store!

Join us at A Piece Of Ewe to see Classy and Classy with Cashmere, which is worsted weight yarns. Worsted weight yarns are fairly easy to work with!


When you walk to the left room, you’ll see Everest, which is a chunky yarn, and it’s actually a very fun yarn we’ve never had in the store before. Also on the table with Everest is Cosette! This is a DK weight yarn that we’ve also never carried at the store! Both of these yarns are super squishy and soft. So amazing to feel!


In the middle room, where we usually keep our cotton and whatnot, you’ll find the Smooshy sock yarn, Smooshy with Cashmere, BFL sock yarn, BFL with Camel and Silk, and even some BFL Cashmere and Silk!


When you walk out of the cotton room towards the middle of the main room, we’ve cleared off a display for more Dream yarn! This display has Jilly yarn, which is a fingering lace weight yarn. We don’t usually carry lace weight yarns.  We’ve also got the Jilly with Cashmere. Some of these have cashmere, and some do not. Along with the Jilly sits the Dream In Color City yarn, which is a heavy worsted weight. We kept them in the packages for now, but don’t feel forced to buy them in the package! They come separately so you can get only as much as you want.


We have plenty of yarn, and so much more than we expected! We love the variety we’ve got, and we know you will too! Stop by until Monday, May 14th to check out all the amazing Dream In Color yarns! There’s a little bit of something for everyone.

 

Meet Lizzie

April 30, 2018

Sometimes, we realize certain things are just meant to be. Right before Christmas, Susan lost her beloved pal, Gideon. Although Susan and Squeaky,  her 12 ½-year-old cat, were perfectly content with the human/kitty pair being by themselves, they both received an expected surprise.

Susan soon found out that one of her friend’s nieces had a pregnant cat. Not too long after, her friend Michelle brought over two of the kittens for a lovely visit. Curious, Susan brought the orange female kitten down to Squeaky’s hiding spot in the basement. The tiny kitten climbed right into Squeaky’s hiding spot and snuggled up to Squeaky, who didn’t mind this new furry friend at all! Susan had thought she needed to get a male kitten for Squeaky instead of a female, so she brought down the male kitten and Squeaky-voiced his disapproval with a hiss. Susan gave both kittens back to Michelle because again, they were just fine on their own.


Later on, the little female kitten had no takers for adoption. Susan tried and tried to find her home. She found one, but it, later on, fell through so Susan decided to keep the sweet girl for her own. She deserved a loving home too, after all! This adorable kitten is now known as Elizabeth Grace, but you can call her Lizzie! Lizzie is full of energy and loves to climb whatever and whoever she can. She learned a new trick Susan calls the Superman, in which she runs and leaps at you with all four paws outstretched.

This sweet girl won’t be a shop cat, but she’ll be happy to keep Squeaky and Susan company at home!

 

Inaugural Local Yarn Day Event On April 21st From 10 AM-3PM

April 12, 2018

Calling all knitters and crocheters!

We know yarn stimulates your senses: soaking in the entire spectrum of color, sinking your fingers into decadent skeins of the softest fibers, settling into a cozy chair to page through the latest patterns. We also know the only place to get the full experience is in the store.

Come celebrate everything you love about yarn at our Local Yarn Store Day event, featuring many items from your favorite yarn companies and designers available only at brick-and-mortar local yarn shops. Have friends who'd like to learn more? Bring them along! Remember to check in on social media and share your excitement.

A Piece of Ewe
506 Columbus Avenue
April 21, 10 a.m. - 3 p.m.



The Makin’ Bacon Food Truck will be on site. We will offer a $1 Bacon Buck to be used for food for every $10 you spend in our yarn store. 

Limit $5 Bacon Bucks per person. 

Makin’ Bacon Menu:

Whole Hog Special (WHS) choice of entree, side of bacon-topped Mac and Cheese, and a dessert 

Street Style Steak Sandwich 
A 5 ounce ball-tip steak, served on a Barney’s Bakery bun, with mayo, cheese, grilled onions, and bacon. $9.50 WHS $14.00

Street Style 1/4 pound Bratwurst, served on a Barney’s Bakery bun, with mayo, cheese, grilled onions, and bacon. $6.50 WHS $11.00

Street Style 1/4 pound All-Beef Dog, served on a Barney’s Bakery bun, with mayo, cheese, grilled onions, and bacon.
$6.50 WHS $11.00

Pulled Pork Sandwich
Slow roasted pulled pork, piled high on a fresh bun, topped with BBQ sauce $6.50 WHS $11.00

Pulled Pork Street Bowl
Creamy Mac and Cheese, topped with pulled pork, BBQ sauce, and grilled onions. Regular $6.50 Large $8.50 Add bacon $1.00

Five cheese, Bacon-Topped Mac and Cheese. Regular $4.50 Large $6.50 X-Large $8.50

Chocolate Bacon Brownie $2.00

Join us for a fun day with some baconlicious food, while supporting A Piece of Ewe!


On Hooks and Needles

April 9, 2018

It happens all the time. You’re sitting in a public space, hook in hand, and the voice of a stranger breaks through your reverie: “Hey! What are you knitting?” (Knitters’ work gets confused by non-yarnies, too, although maybe not as often.)

At this point, a discussion can become an enthusiastic, even spirited, defense of one needle art or the other, but what’s “better” tends to be determined by a stitchers’ personal history, aesthetic preference or range of comfortable physical motion – not to mention what kinds of projects they enjoy.

Knitting vs. Crocheting

Both arts have a lot going for them. Crochet’s textural interest and inherent sturdiness make for beautiful and practical versatility – the same stitches that create intricate lace also shape lovable toys and durable, trendy baskets and rugs. Building with a single stitch at a time gives the artisan ease of free-form design and more flexibility in sharing hooks among multiple projects. True, finding a great sweater pattern can be a challenge, and you do need to pay attention to US vs. British pattern language. But, overall, the projects work up quickly, and the coziness of a crocheted afghan on a chilly evening can’t be denied.

Knitting uses only two kinds of simple stitches to make rows of loops that interlock. Working with many loops at a time (instead of just one) creates a finer, softer fabric that lends itself more easily to modern-looking wearables – and the problem isn’t finding those patterns; it’s choosing which one to make first. Of course, working with so many live loops increases the opportunity for errors that may not be as easy to correct. However, the sheer number of knitting resources is staggering in comparison, and standardized pattern language minimizes confusion.

But why stay rooted in one spot?

Why should knitters learn to crochet?

Shaped edges clean up beautifully with a quick slip stitch border. Chained loops make great buttonholes, and that lace we mentioned earlier can take your work up several notches. Many knitters swear by using foundation chains for provisional cast-ons. And nothing picks up stitches – dropped or deliberately added – like a hook.

When would a crocheter use needles?

Your flowers and other appliques shine on a field of stockinette. Color work is possible with crochet, but you can tackle more intricate detail with knitted fabric. Good-looking socks can come off a hook, but their knitted cousins have the edge on stretch for an even more comfortable fit. Finally (for this post, at least), many stitchers alternate with knitting or even switch arts altogether because crochet’s repetitive motions caused discomfort or aggravated arthritis or other injury.

The real question isn’t which needle art is better – it’s which one suits your purpose today?