Nanaimo is a super cute, super-bulky weight cardie that will knit up in a FLASH!!!!! It’s perfect for fall weather, both knitting & wearing. Canadian designer Tara-Lynn Morrison of Good Night, Day makes marvelous, simple sweaters with super thick yarn. We used super soft, 100% merino Malabrigo Rasta for our sample (we used colour 809 Solis), her designs always make the yarn shine. If hand-painted yarn isn’t your thing and you want a more demure look try using Cascade Spuntaneous – it’s also a single-ply, 100% merino wool.
XS/S, (M/L), (XL/XXL), (XXXL)
Width at bust (lying flat): approx 49.5 cm / 19.5” (56 cm / 22”), (62. 25cm / 24.5”) ( 68.5 cm / 27”) (75 cm /29.5”)
Body length: approx 42 cm / 16.5” (46 cm / 18.5) or desired
Needle sizes aren’t listed, so check the pattern to confirm what you’ll need (although we expect it will be similar to the pattern above). We think Interchangeable needles area great way to go when a pattern calls for a bunch of sizes you don’t normally use. The Knitter’s Pride tips can be a great value, while the Addi Interchangeables are the premium option.
Looking for something to hold your cardie or shawl closed? Try one of our Oversized Safety Pins Brooches – the simple design makes them ideal for knits because there’s nothing for the yarn to get caught in.
We’ve officially moved back to our regular fall/winter/spring store hours, so we’re open 7 days a week again!
COVID is still a thing and we require everyone wear a mask at all times in the store. If you forget yours that’s totally ok, we have extra if you need one.
Sorry about the jarring poster and messaging, it seems to be necessary these days. A quote from Mahatma Gandhi springs to mind here: “The true measure of any society can be found in how it treats its most vulnerable members”. The kind of society I choose to create is loving kindness, so let’s be kind and treat everyone with the respect and consideration we would show to those who are vulnerable. We’ve all been there, at some point in our lives we’ve all felt unsafe (like all of 2020), so even if we aren’t presently feeling that way ourselves, let’s be grateful we feel protected and remember that not everyone has that privilege.
And just a reminder, according to recent science (via Harvard Medical School) a person with COVID can be contagious 48 hours before starting to experience symptoms …. so when you wear a mask you can be guaranteed that you are doing the right thing by everyone by protecting those around you. When you wear a mask in my store you are making a conscious choice to protect everyone, including seniors, healthcare workers, the immunocompromised, pets (yup, they don’t get any vaccines), and our store staff, and I am GRATEFUL.
Michelle has updated the dates for the upcoming Knitsana sessions to give everyone more time to settle into fall (I know we are all holding on to the last wisps of summer as it gracefully passes into fall …. on Monday afternoon I gracefully jumped into my brother’s pool and then exited just as promptly – water can be such a good indicator of change, nature’s little reality check). If you’d like to get better at things like change, acceptance, consciousness, feelings, and growth, our little course in mindfulness might be just the thing for you.
If the pandemic showed us anything, it was that the need to heal is universal, and the time is always now. Change always starts from the inside, but it takes time and practice for it to lay out. Think of it as a holiday gift that needs time to marinate. Give yourself the gift of getting un-stuck NOW and start the wheels turning in your life so the outside starts to shift.
And yes, I know you’re stuck in your old patterns …. it’s totally OK, we all are. But you don’t have to stay in them, you can release them. I know it’s possible because I’ve done it and I’ll tell you, once you start pulling back the layers you won’t want to stop, (you don’t need to stop either, there’s infinite growth and freedom available, you can go back to the buffet as long as you wish). You are never too young or too old to start, but you are the only person who can make it happen for you, you are the only person who can take responsibility.
With much love,
If you are one of those people who don’t believe that your happiness is important, then I have some bad news – you’ve got it all wrong: YOUR HAPPINESS IS THE MOST IMPORTANT THING THERE IS. Not just because every person is worthy and deserving of love and acceptance (it’s going to take a while to let the old beliefs go and accept this, it comes off with the layers), but because everything you do spins out from you, into the world around you …. especially the people closest to you. What you do for yourself you do for others – you can not do right by others if you don’t do right by yourself. The old ‘nice girl’ rules are crap, they aren’t benefiting any of us, regardles of gender (or lack thereof), throw them away and invest in a new playbook, a new path. You, being grounded in your true self, is what is necessary and important, this is where you will find peace and freedom. It takes work, but it is worth EVERYTHING.
Mindfulness is the basic ability to be fully present and aware. The practice can help us when we feel overwhelmed, and help us manage how we react to stress. Luckily, mindfulness is a quality that every person already possesses, you don’t need to conjure it up, you just have to learn how to access it and practice using it. In this workshop, we will use knitting as an entry into the practice of mindfulness, with the intention to help you learn how to both improve and maintain your well-being. The craft of knitting with its repetitive and rhythmic motions is well known for its calming and healing properties. Mindfulness practice has been used for years to help people focus themselves in the present moment. Together, we hope to provide you with the needed tools to decrease stress and support your daily well-being.
The only prerequisite is that you already know how to cast on, knit and purl. You do not need any prior experience with mindfulness or meditation, you just need to show up and be present.
Every Sunday morning for one hour from 10:30 am to 11:30 am for SIX WEEKS (Oct. 16, 23, 30, Nov. 6, 13, 20)
Welcome to Knitsana 2 – if you are looking for a way to expand your mindfulness skills then this is the group for you! We will continue to use knitting in your practice with mindfulness. Knitting with its repetitive motion, illuminating colours and textures offers so much in the way of healing properties. This group will ‘go deeper’ into concepts explored in the first Knitsana group and will help bridge into your daily living.
Every Monday evening for one hour from 7:00-8:00 pm for SIX weeks. (Oct. 17, 24, 31, Nov 7, 14, 21)
Details that Apply to Both Workshops
These groups DO NOT include any knitting instruction
Groups are presently only held online
Space is limited to 20 participants per group, so please don’t wait to register
This group is facilitated by Michelle Bloom, a registered Social Worker who has a love for knitting and a passion for healing. Haley Waxberg, owner of Knit-O-Matic will be co-hosting.
These online groups and will be held over a secure zoom channel.
You must already know how to cast on, knit and purl. For knitting tutorials please see our Knitting Skills Page.
The cost of the group is $200.00 for all six sessions (yarn is included, see the yarn options below for details) . Payment and registration will NOT be going through us at the store – because Michelle is a Registered Social Worker it is more cost-effective to offer this workshop directly through her.
Because this group is considered to be ‘therapeutic’, any participant residing in Ontario that has insurance coverage for social work can apply for benefits. You may otherwise be able to write off the cost of this group on your taxes (talk to your accountant to see).
We will all be using the same, specially selected yarn for our mindful journey. You have two options, both are enough to make a scarf or cowl. If you are a new knitter we recommend 10” straight bamboo or birch needles.
This is not a knitting skills course, so we won’t be taking on a specific project, but here’s a list of simple project options that are well suited to mindfulness knitting with either of our selecetd yarns (choose something that is simple for you):
I’m needed by my family this weekend for an 80th birthday party, followed by my sister-in-law’s departure for her first academic conference (we’re so proud of her!), so I’m taking an extra day off this Saturday. The last weekend of the summer is not traditionally a busy one in the yarn store, so I don’t think you’ll miss me too, too much. I adore it when you come by, but I also love it when people are out taking advantage of beautiful weather and just enjoying life.
Friday: 12 pm to 6 pm
Tuesday: 12 pm to 6 pm
My current reading suggestion is A New Earth by Eckhart Tolle. You can read it on paper, digitally download it, or get it as an audiobook (which is read by the author), so you can knit/crochet/wash dishes/walk/run/get your nails done while you read. It is also accompanied by a chapter-by-chapter podcast with Oprah (stream free online or on any podcast service, including Spotify), so you can test the water and see if it’s for you, and if it is, you can read along with the author, lady-O, and regular people asking really good questions. I feel kind of silly having come so late to the Tolle party (especially after seeing Oprah’s podcast was recorded in early 2019), but I guess I wasn’t ready. Now that I’m here I see exactly why Oprah has been such a fan. Tolle isn’t just talking about spiritual life, he’s talking about LIFE (or to the point, spiritual life IS life).
If you’re at a place where you want to change yourself, your life and our world for the better, this book is a great point of reference to help you level up. Just one caveat – people who are negative and aren’t ready to leave that state won’t get this book (and judging by the reviews online it seems to make them really angry). If you have a negative person in your life, giving them this book won’t ‘fix’ them – they have to be open to healing themselves. People who aren’t quite ready, but are getting there, might read a chapter or two but it won’t stick, it’ll sort of go through them – if this is you or a loved one it’s a good sign, hold on to the book, it’ll be there for you when it’s needed next. Anyway, the best books are always the ones you can read over and over and get something new from each time.
Get your fall off to a great start with a simple cardie you can wear everywhere, all the time. The Effortless Cardigan is made with a simple worsted weight yarn and ONE pair of 4.5mm – 32″ circular needles. It’s knit from the top-down in one piece (the underside of the sleeves are seamed, but if you prefer you can knit them in the round). The pattern is free, and there are a range of affordable yarn options, so if you end up loving your sweater you can keep making them and fill your wardrobe!
Our SUMMER SALEis ending Sept 5th! Select products (including some clearance items and craft kits!) are now 25% OFF. The discount is online and in-store, and it will be automatically be added at check-out, so you don’t have to jump through any extra hoops or remember to put in a discount code (this discount can not be combined with any other offers or discounts – you won’t be able to use another discount code when you check-out).
It’s no secret that, when it comes to colour, texture, and pattern, Pom Pom are maximalists through and through! This autumn,they decided to embrace this natural instinct and curate a knit and crochet collection inspired by abundance.
The result is 11 glorious designs with immense visual impact, highly satisfying and tactile motifs, and which echo the intricate aesthetic of the Arts and Crafts movement. The patterns are mesmerising, romantic, and somehow embody the wondrous generosity imbued in the act of making.
Featuring designs by: EDDA LILJA // ELENA DIMCHEVSKA // EMMA DUCHER // EMMA JANET // ERICA SUFKA // FRAN LÓPEZ // LUCIA LUCIANO // MARIA WALTERS // OLIVIA SCZEPANIK // WEICHIEN CHAN (THEPETITEKNITTER) // YUCCA
What’s more, the autumn 2022 collection features an article by Aja Barber, an eminent figure in the pushback against fast fashion, who encourages us to think more about the clothes we pair with our handmade items.
Spend a golden autumn afternoon reading the interview with embroidery extraordinaire, Tessa Perlow, and using Ella Hawkins’ biscuit decorating tutorial to make confectionery which looks like your knitting.
Our beloved magazine is taking a step into a more modern, dynamic direction by celebrating knitwear and the world of fibre in a fresh way. Together with the new look, we are also excited to introduce new, regular articles, such as Jeanette Sloan Talks Fibre. Of course, there are also things that won’t change: gorgeous knitwear patterns, beautiful high-quality photography and the size of the magazine, all elements that Laine is known for. The new look was created by Kyiv-born Marina Veziko, one of Finland’s leading designers and the Graphic Designer of the Year 2021.
To celebrate the new look, Laine has TWO different cover versions available: one in full-colour and a very limited black & white version!
Issue 15, Autumn 2022:
12 knitting patterns: 6 sweaters, 2 cardigans, 2 shawls, 1 hat, and 1 pair of socks
an interview with knitwear designer Lindsey Fowler
an article on how sheep help to save endangered biotopes
NEW! Jeanette Sloan Talks Fibre – a regular article on Jeanette chatting with interesting people. In this issue, she meets Rose Sinclair, an academic researcher, author and lecturer. Rose’s PhD research into Dorcas Clubs examines how textile networks can be catalysts for social change.
NEW! Five Ways by our regular writer Päivi Kankaro. In this issue, Päivi explores 5 ways how knitting can be used as a tool for change.
NEW! Where I Knit – a regular piece that pictures people knitting in their favourite spot, and talking about crafting in their everyday lives.
Designers featured in this issue: Jenny Ansah, Jennifer Brou, Weichien Chan (also known as the Petite Knitter), Štěpánka Drchalová, Meiju K-P, Bernice Lim (also known as Yamagara), Hanna Maciejewska, Terri Maue, Olga Putano, Florence Spurling and Yiğitcan Vatansever.
Knitstrips: The World’s First Comic-Strip Knitting Book
This new book is a tour de force, an epic achievement in melding knitwear design, instruction, and advice with interactive graphic illustrations. It’s a new way of seeing how to take a ball of yarn and a pair of needles and transform it into something tangible, useful, and beautiful. It’s bursting with life and the love of knitting.
Inside, the book is organized into four chapters, or issues, each of which gathers a handful of designs by different designers.
These are not conventional patterns. They are yarn-neutral, meaning that the authors guide you through choosing your yarn, but the choice really is yours. You’ll learn how to adapt the pattern you’re making to the gauge and other qualities of the yarn you’re using. In contrast to the prescriptive approach of a typical knitting pattern, the Knitstrips approach is open ended and full of learning. As I read through these energy-filled pages, I had renewed appreciation for how much thought and engineering goes into the most familiar handknit.
The Authors: Alice Ormsbee Beltran and Karen Kim Mar
We have sentimental reasons for jumping up and down with glee at the publication of Knitstrips. In a very real sense, Knitstrips first saw the light of day here on MDK. We can take no credit for the brilliance of the idea, but we will claim every last bragging right for realizing that the idea that Alice Ormsbee Beltran shared with us was very exciting.
And when the first Knitstrip appeared, the reaction from knitters was incredible. There was an avalanche of downloads of that first Knitstrip, and each of the ones that followed.
So: we send our heartiest congratulations to Alice and her co-author Karen Kim Mar on achieving this amazing book. The mere idea of doing copy edits and technical edits on patterns that are drawn by hand—by brilliant illustrators Laura Irrgang and Michele Philips—makes us want to take to our beds for a week or so. This is a major work of vision and of writing, illustration, and editing. Most exciting of all, Knitstrips is going to introduce so many new people to the joy of knitting, the challenge of knitting, and the satisfaction of having handmade garments and accessories in our lives.
The roster of designers, which includes the authors, is stellar:
The Darcy by Karen Kim Mar is a lovely, versatile neckwarmer that is made without shaping of any kind. Thanks to Alice, Karen, and the gentle publishers at Abrams for this exclusivedownloadable PDF. (Click on the link to download the pattern.)
Our SUMMER SALECONTINUES! Select products (including some clearance items and craft kits!) are now 25% OFF until September 5th, 11:59pm. The discount is online and in-store, and it will be automatically be added at check-out, so you don’t have to jump through any extra hoops or remember to put in a discount code (this discount can not be combined with any other offers or discounts – you won’t be able to use another discount code when you check-out).
We are tremendously thrilled to inform you about the ultimate comfort-knit book for autumn 2022. The U.S. based designer Lindsey Fowler (@larkspurknits) has designed a beautiful and versatile knitwear collection for knitters of all levels.
Lindsey Fowler’s knitwear collection Salt & Timber is inspired by the Pacific Northwestern coast. This visually stunning book features 15 cozy designs that are intuitive and easy to knit. The patterns – including socks, shawls, sweaters, hats, mitts, and even a blanket – offer thoughtful details, opportunities to make the most of your yarn stash and ways to customize the garments to fit your style.
Lindsey Fowler lives in Northeast Ohio, USA, with her high school sweetheart, her twins, her old mutt, and a cat. As a designer, Lindsey likes working with textures and finding new takes on classics. She is continuously inspired by nature, architecture, and traditional handicrafts. Salt & Timber is Lindsey’s debut book.
I came across these sunny hand towels a few times and felt like they were full of YUP! They’re a good size, 22″ wide x 37″ long, but of course you are welcome to up or downscale them – they’re just rectangles, after all. They’re made with a simple linen stitch that creates a woven look on one side and a nubbly texture on the other. And the pattern’s free – sweet!
Cascade Ultra Pimais a silky soft, light cotton. It’s easy to work with on both knitting needles or crochet hook. I often recommend it for baby blankets or afghans because it’s so soft and machine washable, and it doesn’t have the hardness or lack of give that’s common in so many cotton yarns.
I was so eager to share this project with you that I rephotographed the Cascade Ultra Pima (it was time). All the new images have been colour corrected, so they’re as close to the original as was possible … not an easy task with cotton, the light reflected off the surface makes it really tricky! Any old photos left are colours that were out of stock and couldn’t be photographed.
Cascade Ultra Pima: 4 skeins in main colour, 1 skein in contrast colour (makes 2 hand towels, recommend 3718 Cream for main colour and 3764 Sunshine for contrast colour)
The following colours of Cascade Ultra Pima are all smashing combined with colour 3718 Cream:
3833 Antique Moss
3845 Robin’s Egg Blue
Berroco Remix Light is also a great option! Because of it’s generous yardage You’ll need half as much yarn: 2 skeins of the main colour and 1 of the contrast will make two hand towels)
Farmhouse Towels (Knit)
Make some towels that are so beautiful you’ll never want to use them! That’s ok, some things you use until they’re shredded, and some you keep out to please the eye. Both have their roles in our lives. The pattern is a FREEBIE, and makes for some simple, elegant summer knitting.
Quince & Co Sparrowis my favourite yarn for this project, I love how this linen looks, the silky feels after being washed, and also how resilient it is (it gets better going through the wash) . My second personal choice would be
Berroco Remix Light is the budget friendly, earth friendly, use-friendly option – it has so much yardage, two skeins of the main colour will make 3 towels, and 3 skeins will make 5. Plus it’s recycled, has a neat texture, is easy to knit with and wash.
Cascade Ultra Pima is the last on the list, but not the least. This silky smooth pima cotton is a staple, and is always a joy to knit with and wear. If you like a plain, flat aesthetic, this is your yarn of choice.
ALL OF THE YARN SUGGESTED ARE ON SALE TO AUG 14th!
Note: the pattern seems to have neglected to explain how to make an I-Cord (the loop at the tops of the cloth), so here is an I-cord tutorial for those of you who are not familiar with the technique. Alternately, you can skip the I-cord, make your cloth loop-free and just weave in your ends – there’s no rule that says a cloth must have a loop.
Approximately 10 x 10 inches
Main Colour: 100m required per washcloth. Contrast Colour: 24m required per washcloth.
We are back to doing private instruction and project help! You can learn something new, catch up with an old project, or get help with a new one – you set the agenda. Private classes are by appointment only, you can easily book online (you can see our availability at your convenience) or call us at 416-653-7849 to make an appointment.
PLEASE NOTE:Everyone MUST wear a mask while in the store.
Ages 8 & up
Maximum 2 people per private class
Weekdays: Monday to Friday, 12:30 to 5:30 pm
You pay in person when you attend your class
$29.97 per hour, per person (+tax).
We have continued to wear masks in the store to keep everyone healthy and safe. Like wearing a seatbelt, it’s a very easy thing to do to ensure the safety of all. Viruses are living things, and as such, they tend to change to adapt to their environment. Like Monthy Python said, nobody expects the Spanish Inquisition …. unless you also adapt and learn to not make assumptions.
The reason I bring this up is because I met someone this week who sincerely believed that the COVID vaccine prevented him and his wife from contracting the virus. He also believed that two shots of the vaccine were sufficient to protect them. I don’t know where he received his information from (I couldn’t really hear him across the room), but it is inaccurate and it leaves him and his wife vulnerable to the virus.
So, to clarify:
The COVID vaccine will not prevent you from contracting COVID. There are different kinds of vaccines, and the COVID vaccine is not that kind. The COVID vaccine is more like the annual flu shot – it helps reduce the effects of the virus, so you are much, much less likely to end up in hospital.
Two shots of either the Moderna or the Phizer vaccine are no longer enough to protect you. Like all vaccines, its effects wane over time, and you need to get a booster every 6 months. If it has been 6 months since your last shot, you don’t have much protection.
ALL of the strains of COVID are still floating around, and you can still get any of them. Some people think that they will get the variant du jour, and getting COVID won’t be a big deal because that variant is less severe. If you get COVID, there are no guarantees that you won’t contract one of the earlier, stronger strains.
Getting COVID does not prevent you from getting COVID again.
You don’t want Long COVID – it’s nasty, and is not well understood yet.
Our health care system was already strained when the Pandemic struck. After two and a half years, it is seriously broken. My point is, its not a good time to end up in the hospital if you can help it.
I don’t want to scare you, but I do want to illustrate that it’s important not to make assumptions about this virus. Live your life, but also protect yourself by wearing a mask in public places. If you believe in vaccines, make sure yours is up to date. There is always risk in life, but you can reduce your exposure. I still go to the gym, but I wear an N95 mask while I’m there. Eckhart Tolle said “Some changes look negative on the surface but you will soon realize that space is being created in your life for something new to emerge.” Change is the only thing in life you can expect, the only constant, the only thing that is guaranteed.
People keep asking me when we are going to return to group classes and Sit ‘n Knit …. what they are really asking is two questions … “When will the pandemic be over?” and “When can I go back to my old life?” The answer to the first question is that I honestly don’t know. I’ve gazed into my crystal ball many times, and I’ve come to the conclusion that crystal balls don’t work that way (at least mine doesn’t … just kidding, my crystals are either jewelry or little chunks that hang out in my house). As for the second, I do know (without having to consult a divine rock) that you are not going back to life as you knew it … change is the only constant. So what part of the past are you still holding on to? (This question leaves me feeling slightly uncomfortable … there’s something that’s ready to leave. If you’re feeling resistant, defensive, or just uneasy then you probably also have something that’s ready to go.) Have you created space for something new? Try it, maybe if we all do it’ll move things along a bit faster? After all, life happens through us, not to us.
My recent recommendations:
Here are some of the books, courses & meditations I’ve discovered lately that I highly recommend: