Thursday, January 24, 2013

Concussions, collections, KAL's and all that's going on!!

Hey Oh! Loopers,

It has been a fun, slightly catastrophic and very eventful week here at the Oh! Loops headquarters; I love calling it that because it makes me chuckle since our headquarters really only consists of Sarah's kitchen and my tiny little office that is actually the walk in closet in my master bedroom lol. Hopefully someday we will have a space grandiose enough to actually be a headquarters.

Okay let me explain why it's been a catastrophic week. On Wednesday I slipped on the ice in my driveway while holding my son. Well the outcome of that has been a minor concussion, bruised ribs, elbows, knees, forearms and a very sore finger that I stabbed with my keys lol!! My son thankfully left the scene of the accident 100% okay lol!! Then today poor Sarah jammed her finger and put a hole through one of her nails ouch! So needless to say we are seriously considering changing our name from Oh! Loops to Oh! Whoops lol!!! Since we are obviously accident prone! :)

Anyways, as many of you know Sarah is test knitting a shawl for Laura aka Lala of lala knits and the Knit Girls. She is making very good progress and should have the project completed this weekend  go Sarah!!!! You also know if you read our facebook page or plurks that we have some other very exciting news. Well another designer asked us if we would mind her using our yarn for the featured photo for an awesome new pattern she is designing! We were totally stocked. Sarah has also agreed to test knit this pattern, so once we have more information we will be able to share the name of the designer and the name of the pattern with all of you guys. It's a pretty cool pattern and I'm sure you guys will love it.

Okay now I will tell you want you all really want to know, the next extra credit assignment and Februarys "Out of this World" KAL project............ we love that you guys are so anxious to get started.

This week's extra credit, is to knit something with the words "Moon or Stars" in either the title of the pattern or the designers name. It can be anything you want and as big or as small as you like. Once completed please post a picture of the item in your claimed spot on the extra credit thread. We must say we are loving the extra credit items you have all completed thus far, you guys rock!

Now for project #2~ "Knitters WALK on the moon"

You must knit something for either your feet or legs using a color technique that is new to you. These color techniques could include things such as: self stripping yarn, contrasting heel/toe, a color you don't normally knit with, using a solid if you normally use variegated or using a variegated if you would normally use a solid, or you could try colorwork. Anything color related that is new to you will count. As with January's project you cannot cast on until February 1st and you will have until midnight on February 28th to complete your project and have a picture of your FO uploaded to the appropriate thread.

Please feel free to chat about this project and share your pattern and color ideas in the "Out of this World" chatter thread starting today, this thread will be the ongoing chatter thread for the entire KAL!

If you have particular questions for either Sarah or myself about this project please post your questions in the "Out of this World" KAL questions thread and we will do our best to answer them. Please remember the most important thing is to have fun!!! Don't stress, challenging ourselves to think outside what is normal for us is healthy and should only encourage us!

Real quick before we say goodbye for this week we wanted to give a few reminders and say a few thank you's!!

First we have to say a huge thank you to Casey of Tangerine Designs for her wonderful work and designs. She has agreed to create something awesome for the "Out of this World" prize packages as well as the extra credit prize.

We must also say an enormous thank you to Amy Beth of the Fat Squirrel Speaks podcast for mentioning us on her podcast. We sent Amy Beth a skein of our Little Stargazer colourway and she showed it to her viewers and has agreed to knit some hats for the "Halos of Hope" foundation so thank you, thank you, thank you Amy Beth!!!

We also wanted to thank Denise of the Knitting Den for mentioning us on her last podcast and for considering us as one of the indie dyers she would like to try this year. 

Again thanks ladies you all rock!!!

We wanted to quickly remind everyone that as of today you have one more week to complete project number one of the "Out of this World" KAL. Project one is "Put your HANDS up for knitters in space" You were asked to knit something for your hands using a new technique. Please make sure you have your FO uploaded to the appropriate thread by no later than 11:30 pm on Thursday January 31st as we will lock this thread at midnight. You must complete all four projects in order to be entered to win the awesome prize package so get those photos posted!!

Second we wanted to let everyone know that February is the last month to order the next Yarnie AA club subscription for the March/April/May colors. Our Yarnie AA club is a three month long club. You will receive one skein of yarn a month for three months. Our clubs will always contain one skein of a mild variegated colourway, one skein of a wild variegated colourway and one semi solid to match both variegated skeins. You will also receive lots of fun little extras each month. If you are interested in the next color group which will include, green, purple, teal, pink and gray, please have you order placed by no later than February 28th.

Last but not least we want to remind everyone that our newest collection will go up in the shop on Monday February 4th and there is a good chance it may resemble a February holiday hmmmmmm!

Okay guys sorry it was a long once again this week. I think I have told you all the important goings on. We hope you have a great week, we are excited to see those finished hand projects, and see what you all decide to knit in February. I will see you back here next week!

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Looking Forward

When looking ahead to the many things that you can accomplish this year, what do you see?

What is On the Horizon? Will you Dream Big? Oh the Possibilities are endless if you just Imagine all the Royal Beginnings and Healthy Restarts you have at your fingertips!! It's a new year and a Brave New World! So Set the World on Fire, and go There and Back to find true love or a world rich with opportunities At Last!!

We give you our "Looking Forward" collection.........................................................

Friday, January 18, 2013

What a fun week!!!!

Well hello and happy Friday everyone,
Boy it's been a fun week here at the Oh! Loops headquarters, there are so many things we want to tell you guys about.

Earlier this week Wool2dye4 generously offered to donate five skeins of yarn to Oh! Loops for Sarah and I to use for the "Halos of Hope" RAK. So once those arrive we will get them dyed up and those of you that would like the "Little Stargazer" colourway on the Glitter base will have the opportunity to purchase them. Since the skeins are being donated Sarah and I have decided to donate an additional 20% of the profit to the foundation. We cannot say thank you enough to Sheila and the entire Wool2dye4 team for their amazing donation and their willingness to help Halos of Hope fight children's cancers.  

We would also like to thank Denise of the Knitting Den podcast for mentioning us on her last episode and for considering us as one of the indie dyes she would like to try this year.
Along with these wonderful things happening this week Sarah was asked to test knit a shawl pattern for Laura of "The Knit Girls" podcast and "lala knits" Sarah was so excited that she decided we needed to dye two new colourways for this project. Here is what we can up with.........

Punk Rock


A Little Bit of Rhythm

and here is Sarah's progress so far.............. (Laura said she wanted everyone to share pics and chatter)
Okay now for the stuff you guys are really interested in, a new extra credit assignment!!!

We need you all to go stash diving. Find the oldest skein of unused yarn in your stash and upload a photo of it. Tell us how long you have had it, what you originally bought it for and what you would use it for now.

Please remember when posting in the extra credit thread, we want you to edit your original post to add your new completed challenges so that we can easily get a winner with our random number generator. Thanks guys.
We also wanted to remind you that you still have two weeks to complete project #1 of the "Out of this World" KAL and we will be announcing project #2 on next Friday's blog, so that you have plenty of time to choose the materials needed by the February 1st CO date.

A few additional reminders, the second skein of the "Yarnie AA" club subscriptions are being mailed out today with a few extra fun goodies. Plus don't forget that if you are interested in being a part of the next set of club colourways you have until February 28th to purchase your subscription.
On Monday January 21st the second half of this months collection will be making its debut in the shop. We are super excited about the new colourways and can't wait to share them with all of you!
Well I think that's all for this week, have a great weekend and we will see you back here next Friday.

Friday, January 11, 2013

Little Stargazer RAK

I apologize this week's blog is very long, but there is a lot to cover!

Okay guys because we are over the moon excited I am going to just jump right in to our awesome news, and the next extra credit challenge.

Last week while watching the Knitting Blooms podcast Sarah and I heard about this charity called Halos for Hope. Every year they host "Camp Happy Times" and each year they give it a different theme. Well you guys guess what this year's theme is? Yep you guessed it STARS!!!!!! So this year they are trying to get 200-300 knit/crocheted hats that have a stars/space/outer space aliens/Star Wars/Star Trek design and or theme donated for the kids to wear when they take them stargazing.

 Okay like I said when Sarah and I saw this we knew it was perfect, it was serendipity!! So you are probably asking yourself what does this mean for Oh! Loops and the KAL? Well it means that this week's extra credit is an RAK! We want you to knit/crochet a hat for a Halos for Hope child. So going up in our shop today Sarah and I have created a special colourway called "Little Stargazer" in honor of this year's Camp Happy Times theme. If you would like to donate a hat to this charity you will have the opportunity to purchase this colourway should you decide that you want to use it for this extra credit RAK. Today we will only have three listings for this colourway, however if you decide you want to purchase this colourway once the three listings are gone, you can still do so. You would just need to purchase a "Custom Order" and indicate in the sellers notes that you want the "Little Stargazer" colourway. The bases available will be, Platinum Sock fingering, SW Worsted and 2ply High Twist fingering and you would need to indicated which of those you would like as well.

 Please note that you by no means have to purchase this colourway in order to participate nor do you have to use this colourway for this project, if you would rather just purchase the skein for yourself that is alright as well. Sarah and I have already decided that 10% of the profit for this colourway will go to the Halos for Hope foundation, because we would like to support their efforts anyway we can. However with that said we would also love it if you would just make a hat regardless of whether or not you decide to purchase a "Little Stargazer" colourway, because to us the donation of the hat is the important thing.

If you do decide to knit/crochet a hat this is what we need you to do:

1.) Choose a pattern with a stars/space/outer space aliens/Star Wars/Star Trek theme. I have added a page to our Ravelry group that includes a list of patterns, you don't have to use one of these they are just ones that the Halos for Hope staff suggested. Hats can be made to fit any child between the ages of 5-21.

2.) If you are not knitting the hat from our yarn please make sure you select a soft natural yarn, that can be washed. Many of these children are undergoing chemo treatments and therefore have bald and very sensitive heads.

3.) Please have the hat completed by no later than May 1st.

4.) Once you have finished the hat please send it to me Lydia Brown or Sarah Stevens (you can PM us on Ravelry for our address) by no later than May 2nd, with either a quick note about yourself or a gift tag that says handmade by and your name. We would like to include those with the hats when we send them off. If you do not have a gift tag we will have some available in our shop for $0.50 that you could add to your finished item, that will be star/space themed.

Once we have received all of the finished hats Sarah and I will send them off to the Halos for Hope foundation along with the additional money raised. We are super excited about this project and hope that you will all join us.

Okay moving on to other "Out of this World" KAL news. Many of you have been asking for hints as to the next project as well as the fourth and final one so that you know what to purchase. So Sarah and I wanted to give you the basic important need to know information, but nothing that would spoil the fun and surprise. So...............

For project 2: Yardage requirement~ up to you, Pattern~ up to you, Pattern category~ TBA later by us, New Challenge/Technique portion TBA later by us

For project 3: Yardage requirement~ up to you, Pattern~ up to you, Pattern category~ TBA later by us, New Challenge/Technique portion TBA later by us

For final project: Yardage requirement~ 400 yards total, 200 yards must be of Oh! Loops yarn, which means you can either purchase 1 skein of our fingering weight yarn, 1 skein of our worsted weight yarn, or 2 skeins of worsted weight yarn as long as the finished object has a total of 400 yards and 200 yards of something from our shop. You can either order the custom "Out of this World" colourway or choose another item from the shop that you like more.

We have also decided that to keep you guys excited and happy between projects we are going to give extra credit challenges every week instead of every other week as discussed before. The extra credit projects will not always involve actual knitting, sometimes they will be just random and fun. We are so thrilled at the number of people who have already jumped on board for this KAL and we can't wait to see the progress you all make.

In non KAL news we wanted to give you a few reminders. First the second half of this month's collection will go up on Monday the 21st. The skeins are quirky and we think you guys are really going to enjoy them. We also wanted to let everyone know that all of the remaining items from our "Sweet Shoppe" collection will be leaving the shop on the 17th of this month, so starting today they will all be on sale. If there is an item from this collection that you have been eyeing grab it while you can. Everything has been marked down 50%

The final tidbit of information that we wanted to give you guys is about a new thread we will be starting on our group page. Sarah and I were talking the other day and we realized that since we don't have an actual  podcast (yet, one may be in the works) some of you don't know very much about us and we in turn don't know very much about you. So with that said we will be starting a "Whatcha" thread in our group. In this thread we will discuss all things regarding, "whatcha reading, whatcha watching, whatcha eating, whatcha obsessed with etc, etc". This will be an ongoing thread. We think it will be a fun way for us to share fun random things with you guys our friends and also for us to know fun things about you guys!

Okay now that you have spent about 45 minutes listening to me ramble I will say goodbye for now. I hope you will be joining us for the RAK extra credit and I wish you all the best with your "Out of this World" projects!! Happy knitting and I will see you back here next Friday.


P.S. there is a Camp Happy Times chatter thread over in Ravelry that can be found here: Halos for Hope Ravelry Group

and if you would like to read information about the Halos for Hope foundation or the Camp Happy Times theme for this year you can do so here: http: Halos for Hope

Sunday, January 6, 2013

A Tribute to 2012

Our newest collection was created in memory of some of the major events of this past year. From things like the Rover Curiosity landing on Mars, to the London Olympic games and NOT the end of times. We also wanted to dedicate this collection to a few amazing people who during their life times changed the face of America in one way or another. Etta James, Whitney Houston, Dick Clark and Neil Armstrong, we say thank you and here's to you!

So without further ado we give you...."A Tribute to 2012"

Friday, January 4, 2013

Looking Ahead

Wow what a crazy fun week. We announced the "Out of this World" KAL last week and officially CO to the first project January 1st. Well things have exploded since then and we are having a blast!!! We have already made some new friends, who in turn have also made some new friends of their own. We have two FO's posted already and lots of extra credit points being awarded.

Speaking of extra credit, last week we informed you that the new extra credit challenges would be announced every other Friday, so in sticking with that schedule the second challenge will be announced on Friday the 11th. Sarah and I are super excited for this particular challenge. It wasn't something we came up with on our own but when we heard about it, it was almost serendipity!!! It fits in perfectly with the theme of our KAL and we couldn't find a better cause if it was our soul mission in life.......well now that I have gotten your attention and hopefully peaked your curiosity and interest I'm going to say check back next week both here and in the extra credit thread on Ravelry for all the details!!!! I know Sarah and I will be participating and I hope you will as well

Last week we also informed you that the KAL was going to run for a period of four months, and that each month would pertain to a new project and a new way for you to challenging yourself knitting wise. We indicated that each months project would be announced and outlined the last week of the current month. Well this format still remains true, however we got to brainstorming and came up with a fun idea. We indicated that the only month in which you would be required to purchase something new was for the fourth and final project. So we wanted to give a little more information about what that means. Now don't get to excited, we aren't going to reveal what the project is going to be just yet, but we are going to give you a little more information about it, so that you have plenty of time to prepare.

First since we are asking you to purchase something, we need to clarify that the new purchase must be from our etsy shop Oh! Loops. Each month is about challenging yourself and for many of you this will be your first time knitting with our yarn. So you are being challenged to knit with yarn from new indie dyers. So how will that work? Starting Monday January 7th we will have two pre-order listing in our shop. One for skeins with a more feminine color scheme and the other with a more masculine color scheme.  Similar to our club subscriptions you won't know what the actual skein will look like until it arrive at your door but you will know what colors to expect. If you would like to purchase these official "Out of this World" KAL colourways you will have the opportunity to do so. These listings will remain in our shop until Friday March 1st and you would need to purchase by no later than that date. We will then have all skeins dyed and shipped no later than March 22nd so that you have your yarn in hand to CO for the final project by April 1st. We will also let you know that at least 200 yards of the yarn used for the final project must be Oh! Loops yarn, so with that said you will be given the option to purchase either worsted weight skeins that are 237 yards or our Platinum fingering weight yarn that is 467 yards. If you choose not to purchase the official "Out of this World" colourways you are more than welcome to purchase any skein listed in the shop. Our regular shop updates happen every 1st and 3rd Monday of the month so there will be plenty of colourways to choose from if you don't wish to purchase the KAL colourway.

More information about the final KAL project will be announced earlier in the month of March so that you have time to get the materials needed. We hope we haven't stressed you out, this is all about having fun!!! So please, please have fun!!!

Don't forget that the first part of the first collection released in 2013 will go up in the shop Monday January's only 4 days away

We look forward to knitting will you all this year and can't wait to see all the "Out of this World" FO's!!!!