Posts Tagged ‘Gourmet Crafter’

Vancouver Sky Line

Friday, September 23rd, 2011


There is always something striking about a city’s skyline. Right away you look for certain features, bridges, hills, buildings, landmarks. Each city is unique, Vancouver included. Looking out from Stanley park into downtown Vancouver there is no mistaking our city and it’s landmarks, I always look for the sails. .


Amanda has captured the skyline in a gorgeous cashmere cowl! The cowl is made with 3 colours of Gourmet Crafter Cashmere, Whale Watching for the sky, Vancouver Sky for the buildings, and Backyard Greens for a bright pop. Not only has she designed this lovely cowl but she’s also turned it into a kit, with all the yarn you will need as well as the pattern.


Happy Canada Day!

Friday, July 1st, 2011

Maple Leaf Mittens

Time to pick up some red and white  yarn and knit yourself up something Canadian! I am personally proud to be a Canadian and I’m pretty excited for baby Hunter’s first Canada day. She will be appropriately clad in red and white and waving a flag (while mummy makes sure she doesn’t poke herself in the eye with it….) today.

There is something fantastically unique about our flag, it stands out distinctively on an encyclopedia page and the symbol of the maple leaf is easily recognizable around the world. On the knitting scene there are many fantastic Canadian designers and dyers so perhaps today you might want to check out their work.

1. Fleece Artist and Handmaiden yarn, dyed in Nova Scotia for your knitting pleasure. Fleece Artist and Handmaiden are lovely hand dyed yarns that come in a wide variety of colours and fibers.

2. SweetGeorgia, dyed in Vancouver. Felicia is (obviously) one of my very favorite dyers and her ‘Unapologetic Colour’ is stunning both in the skein and on the needles.

3. Koigu handpainted sock yarn. This yarn hails from Ontario and has long been a favorite. Be sure to check out the Babette blanket in the shop, all Koigu and stunning!

4. Gourmet Crafter Yarns. This is my own line of yarns with colourways based on photographs I have taken around town. Perhaps some Davie Street or Granville Island Cherries to make you feel Canadian!

GCC: Welcoming February

Monday, February 1st, 2010


It’s February, the heart of the grey Vancouver weather. It’s not fresh and new like January, or Christmassy like December. It’s just February. Not quite spring yet and on the down swing of winter.

I try to keep up beat in February, I mean, wet weather means cozy knitting time in doors right? Sure February has Valentines day to spice things up, and the Olympics will offer a nice distraction, but the fact of the matter is February means grey and wet. Depressed yet? There’s hope. Hope in the form of a lovely sweater.


I just finished up the beautiful February Lady sweater. It’s a pretty pattern adapted from one of Elizabeth Zimmerman’s patterns, the Baby Sweater on 2 Needles. The sweater is knit from the top down which is great for trying things on as you go. The pattern is perfectly customizable which is always a good thing. Short sleeve, long sleeve, swingy, conforming, whatever you want, you can do!

This sweater has been popular around the shop too. The lovely Jessica, up in North Van, knit up a February lady last year with the gang at knit nights. Emily also knit up a February lady but she modified hers quite a bit (I’m not surprised). I started working on mine in December but I had to ask myself why I was asking for so much trouble knitting un-gift related items in December. The sweater got put away but I pulled it back out in January and it’s already finito!


I used the ever popular (can you feel an obsession forming?) Sweetgeorgia Superwash Worsted in colour Riptide. I kind of want to decorate my entire house in this colour, it’s like a teal/navy/black kind of combination. Love it. The yarn is quite sproingy which I quite like in this pattern.

The buttons were a major point of debate around the shop. Should I go with a pewter button to dress things up? A warm wooden button? It was the genereal consensus of pretty much anyone I asked that heart buttons were much too cutesy. So I went with the wooden heart buttons of coures! To make a February Lady of your own you will need:

Yarn: 9-16 skeins of Sweetgeorgia Superwash Worsted (depends on sizing of course. I made the 44″ bust size and used 14 skeins. The pattern gives measurements for bust sizes 35″-52.5″)

Needles: 5mm (I used 32″ addis for the sweater and 16″ addis for the sleeves. You could use double points for the sleeves if you prefer)

Buttons: You will need 3 or more buttons for this sweater. You can use any size, just match them to your buttonhole sizes.

Notions: Stitch markers were very helpful in this pattern. You will also need a little waste yarn to hold the sleeves.

Pattern: Free on Ravelry here.


Gourmet Crafting Corner

Monday, January 11th, 2010


Hello out there in the Urban Yarns world, perhaps we haven’t met yet: I’m Alexa. I’ve been around the shop for a couple of years now and I knit, a lot. I thought I would use this weekly blog post to share some of the projects I’m working on and techniques I may have picked up along the way. To kick it off I thought I would start with something I know best: mittens!


I love mittens. I know love seems like a strong word but really, I love them. They are so warm and cozy, they remind me of snow (I have to be reminded from time to time as there was none on the streets of Vancouver this year) and of childhood, with mittens attached together with a string. I have knit many pairs this year and I was recently informed that January is National Knit Mittens month. There is even a ravelry group dedicated to it (here). These are a few of the mittens I have been working on.



First up are the infamous Fiddleheads. These mittens are very warm with a charming fuzzy lining. They aren’t exactly a beginner project but a good way to master fair isle knitting (that’s knitting with 2 colours at a time, one held behind the other). Mittens are a relatively small project so they are a good opportunity to learn something new.

For the Fiddlehead Mittens you will need:

1. The pattern, which is only available online here or through ravelry here.

2. Yarn: 2 skeins of Blue Sky Alpacas Sport, Melange, or Alpaca Silk in the main colour and up to 5 contrasting colours. For the lining you will need 1 skein of the Brushed Suri.

3. Needles: I used 3.5mm short double pointed needles. As usual if you are tighter knitter go up a size, looser knitter go down a size. Length of needle is also a preference thing.

The most important thing to remember when choosing your colours is to have a lot of contrast between your main colour and your contrast colours. They are called contrast colours for a reason. If you use navy blue against black you won’t be able to see the lovely fiddleheads form. If you choose a very light or very dark colour for the main it makes your life a lot easier. I am happy with my colour choices of the past but with so many options in the Blue Sky Alpacas Melange, Sport, and Alpaca Silk we are always contemplating new colour choices around the shop. These are a few:


The other pair of mittens I’ve been working on are my newest pattern: the Antler Mittens. They have a nice long cuff (which I enjoy but if you don’t, it’s an easy alteration) and they are cabled. I made them with the ever luxurious Worsted Hand Dyes to match my scarf. To whip up this pair you will need:

1. The pattern, availble at the shop

2. 2 skeins of Blue Sky Alpacas Worsted Hand Dyes

3. 5mm doubled pointed needles.


Even though these mittens are long they are done in a thick yarn so they knit up nice and quick. There is still plenty of January left to knit up a pair of mittens!