Bohemian Blooms Along at the Craft Barn

Posted by Amy | Posted in Company News | Posted on 21-06-2018

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Following on from the success of Jane’s recent workshops at the Craft Barn we wanted to celebrate her fabulous Bohemian Blooms blanket. It is an absolute dream of a blanket. Jane is a master at beading in crochet, just a subtle bead here and there that adds an opulence to her designs. If you have looked at this blanket and think, no way I can’t crochet that! Do not worry, you can and we are here to help.

Join our Rowan Consultant, Melanie Boocock in store for a free weekly drop-in session to guide you through Jane’s Bohemian Blooms crochet blanket pattern. Melanie’s session will be an hour and a half morning 10-11.30am, every Saturday for 5 weeks from 23rd June until 21st July. A helping hand for those who can crochet but are after a little advice on stitches and techniques within this design. Whether you have just bought the pattern book or have completed most of the blanket already, Melanie can guide you through without any mishaps. Enjoy a relaxed morning nestled in our Rowan flagship area in store as you crochet along with fellow Bohemian Blooms crocheters.
You must own a copy of the pattern to attend and bring along your own yarn and hook. Find the pattern on our website or in the Craft Barn.

If you live much further afield than the Craft Barn or can’t make it to the sessions, Jane has filmed a series of videos to help with tricky aspects of the blanket. Find them on Jane Crowfoot’s YouTube channel. We would still love to see how you are getting on so be sure to share snaps with #blacksheepwools

Bohemian Blooms Along

Charity Knitting

Posted by Amy | Posted in Company News | Posted on 01-06-2018

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Recently we had Helen, from Warrington & Halton Hospital charity in store, talking to our customers about the charity and showing the knitting and crochet projects they are currently collecting donations for. We have supported our local hospital – Warrington Hospital for quite a few years now, along with Liverpool Womens as part of our Premature Baby campaign. Three years on since Lesley set up the Black Sheep Prem Baby campaign and we are still receiving packages of hand knitted baby items generously knitted by our customers. If you do have any spare oddments of yarn and wonder what to make, then please do knit some teeny hats for prem babies or a small blanket and send them to us. Charity knitting is a great way to use up oddments whilst helping a worthy cause. Take a look at our Premature Baby page for a selection of free patterns and more information about what to make. We will post them on to either Warrington or Liverpool Womens who are always very grateful for donations in their neonatal units. Alternatively find out if your local hospital is looking for any hand knitted items and send them on.

Charity Knitting | Black Sheep Wools

Ventilator Hats

Back to Helen’s visit….she brought along an assortment of hand puppets for the Knit for Hal project. Hal is the name of the mini knitted mascot to be teamed up with young patients when they visit the hospital. Find the basic Hal pattern here.
“Knit4Hal appeal gains the support of knitters all over the country who have pledged to join our knitting & crochet team that create hand knitted puppets, our vision is to be able to provide our young patients with a little something special whilst within our care, which can also act as a pleasant distraction from what can sometimes be quite a stressful time. We have received some wonderful feedback from both patients and their families informing us that the puppets have been such a welcomed gift, what a lovely idea!” – quote from the Charity team.

Charity Knitting

Charity Knitting

Charity Knitting

Helen also brought along twiddle lap blankets. These are designed to comfort patients with dementia. You may have heard of twiddle muffs, well the idea of the blanket is the same but in blanket form. It helps to keep the patient warm as well as having textures and other bits and bobs attached to stimulate restless hands. The blankets Helen is holding are roughly 70cm x 30cm in size. All sewn on bits do need to be secure.

Charity Knitting

“Warrington and Halton Hospitals’ Charity, ‘WHH Charity’, raises funds to provide additional comforts, care or experiences for the direct benefit of patients and their families beyond that which the NHS provides. With the support of our wonderful donors and fundraisers we raise money to improve patient environments, fund additional equipment/facilities and provide important complimentary services to enhance our patients’ overall experience.  We can only continue our work by gaining the support of our local communities and our mission is to create as many different ways as possible to forge new partnerships and involve our supporters in ways that best suit them.” – quote from the Charity team.

Find more information about Warrington and Halton Hospital Charity on their website.

 

Black Sheep Craft Barn Sale

Posted by Amy | Posted in Company News | Posted on 21-05-2018

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Do you want to know a secret? The Black Sheep Craft Barn famous 10 day SALE starts on Friday 25th May 2018 and is on until 3rd June 2018. We have some amazing treats in store, including super duper price drops on branded yarns, including – Rowan, Debbie Bliss, Sirdar and Stylecraft to name but a few. I can’t share any further details as I don’t even know yet! There will also be discount on all needlecraft and 25% off all fabric too. It is time to clear a date in your diary and gather your crafty friends for a day trip to Black Sheep Wools in Warrington. Every year we have new customers who have travelled from various parts of the UK, Dundee and Coventry are two that spring to mind. It is a sale not to be missed. If you are journeying a little further afield then don’t forget we are just 10 minutes from J22 M6 / J11 M62.
Take a look on our Craft Barn page for more details on what facilities we have to offer.

For those who won’t be able to visit our Craft Barn sale, there are always bargains to be snapped up in our clearance section online.

Black Sheep Craft Barn Sale

 

Yarn Shop Day 2018

Posted by Amy | Posted in Company News | Posted on 18-05-2018

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We had a magnificent day at the Craft Barn on Saturday for Let’s Knit Yarn Shop Day 2018. There was all sorts going on in store. Emma Varnam was surrounded by colourful crocheted delights teaching mini crochet classes, Christine Perry (Winwick Mum) shared her top tips on sock knitting, Melanie Boocock (our Rowan Consultant) taught customers to knit and Debbie Tomkies filled the workshop room with a rainbow of colour showcasing her dyeing skills. Thank you so much to all of our special guests for making the day so fabulous!

If you couldn’t make it to the Craft Barn, we hope you managed to visit your local yarn store. There aren’t as many of us around these days and that’s what is so good about Yarn Shop Day, showing the love for your local bricks and mortar yarn store.
There is something so wonderful about entering the Craft Barn full to the brim of irresistible squishy balls of yarn. Your creative juices are ignited and your yarn stash wish list begins to increase before your very eyes. It is a place to meet fellow knitters and crocheters, chat to our super talented staff who are able help out with planning your next project or solving a knit or crochet puzzle and generally immerse yourself with inspiration from every angle.

On the day Emma Varnam and Christine Perry took over our Instagram account to share Yarn Shop Day through their eyes. Here are some of the photos below. There was a glass of Prosecco for everyone, Stylecraft goody bags and fab raffle prizes too.

Yarn Shop Day 2018 | Black Sheep Craft Barn

Emma Varnam brought in all of her Cute Crocheted Animals to visit for the day.

Winwick Mum ready for sock knitting!

Debbie Tomkies brought an array of fabulous hand dyed hanks to showcase the incredible shades you can create.

Yarn Shop Day 2018

I hope you don’t mind Christine, but I have taken this shot from your blog. A great photo of Melanie in action teaching a group of ladies how to get started knitting.

Pop on over to Emma’s blog to read her run down of the day and Winwick Mum‘s too. They have both written lovely posts about their day.

We hope to see you again next year!

Yarn Shop Day 2018

Posted by Amy | Posted in Company News | Posted on 12-04-2018

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Yarn Shop Day 2018 is only a month away and we can’t wait to tell you about what we have planned. This year we have knitting, crochet and yarn dyeing on the agenda. If you haven’t visited us at the Craft Barn on Let’s Knit Yarn Shop Day before then make sure that you mark Saturday 12th May in your diary as busy. There is always an extra buzz of excitement in the air with lots going on, a mix of customers old and new discovering their local yarn shop. If you don’t live nearby then do find out what your local Yarn Shop have planned. I’m sure they will have something fun up their sleeve. Stay up to date on the day via our Instagram. Winwick Mum and Emma Varnam will be doing an Instagram take over, showing you Yarn Shop Day 2018 through their eyes. Take a look on our Craft Barn page to find your way to us.

Yarn Shop Day 2018

Yarn Shop Day 2018

What is happening at the Craft Barn?

 

Emma Varnam – Crochet
Crochet expert Emma Varnam will be sharing her skills doing mini drop in sessions throughout the day. Learn how to master amigurumi crochet in the morning and then discover how to do a crocheted granny ripple in the afternoon. The ripple effect is fabulously displayed in Emma’s latest pattern, exclusive to Black Sheep Wools. Find the Scheepjes River Washed and Stone Washed blanket pack here. Emma will also be surrounded by copies of all four of her crochet books. There is something for the beginner through to the well seasoned crocheter.

Amigurumi Crochet Technique – 10am – 12pm | Crochet Ripple Effect – 1pm – 3pm

Emma says – “Every year I love being part of Yarn Shop Day. It is lovely to meet so many lovely people and share our passion for yarn – the cake at Black Sheep Wools is also fabulous!”

Winwick Mum – Sock Knitting
Christine Perry is the blogger behind Winwick Mum. She is your go to lady when it comes to sock knitting! On Yarn Shop Day Christine will be on hand to offer advice with knitting socks. She will be holding two drop-in sessions, one in the morning and then one in the afternoon.

Winwick Mum (Christine Perry) 9.30 – 12pm | 1pm – 2pm

Christine says – “I’m delighted to be a Yarn Shop Day Ambassador for this year’s Yarn Shop Day, and also to be back at Black Sheep Wools – is there anything better than a local yarn shop that has fabulous cake as well as fabulous yarn?!

I’ll be around to answer any questions you might have on sock knitting, whether you want to get started or you’re well on the way to filling your sock drawer with lots of gorgeous hand-knits.  There will be an opportunity for you to try out different sock needles to find the one that’s just right for you, and to squish lots of yarns – Black Sheep Wools has a great range of sock yarns – so you’re sure to be spoilt for choice!  I’ll also be signing copies of my book, Super Socks, so there’s no excuse to not have some socks on your needles!

It’ll be great to see you on Yarn Shop Day – do come and say hello and show me your socks – even if they’re on your feet!”

Debbie Tomkies – Yarn Dyeing
Debbie will be set up in our large workshop room doing yarn dyeing demonstrations. Enjoy watching the magic happen as she plays with colour and creates amazing yarns.

Debbie Tomkies 10.30am – 12.30pm | 1.30pm – 3.30pm

Melanie Boocok – Beginners Knitting
Our in store Rowan Consultant, Melanie Boocock will be holding learn to knit drop in sessions throughout the day. Melanie will be on hand to teach the complete beginner how to get started knitting using Rowan Big Wool and chunky needles.

Melanie Boocock 9.30am – 2.30pm 

Nominations are open!

Posted by Amy | Posted in Company News | Posted on 05-04-2018

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It’s that time of year again. Time to nominate all of your favourites (*cough…us) in the Let’s Knit British Knitting and Crochet Awards. In previous years we have been overwhelmed by all of you lovely lot, who have voted for us and made us winners and runner up in various categories, including Independent yarn store for the Craft Barn, crochet store and knitting blog. If you wouldn’t mind sparing a few minutes, we would really appreciate your nomination. Plus, you could win up to £300 of yarny goodies. That sounds like a pretty good prize to me!
Hop over to the Let’s Knit British Knitting & Crochet Awards page here. You have until the 12th April to nominate.

British Craft Awards 2018

Posted by Amy | Posted in Company News | Posted on 22-03-2018

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British Craft Awards 2018

We are a little delayed in sharing our very exciting news here on the blog, sorry about that. In February it was time for the winners of the British Knitting Awards 2018 to be announced. We are very pleased to say that we came away with two awards – 1st Runner up for Crochet Retailer of the year and 3rd place for Knitting Retailer of the year.
Thank you to everyone who voted. We are ever so grateful to all of our customers who have taken the time to vote for us. Let’s see if we can get to first place next year!

Stylecraft Day at the Craft Barn

Posted by Amy | Posted in Company News | Posted on 06-02-2018

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Join us for the Stylecraft showcase day at the Black Sheep Craft Barn in Warrington. Stylecraft Blogstar, Lucia’s Fig Tree will be in store for the day sharing her spectacular designs and her colour expertise. Lucia will be happy to advise on the colour palette and yarn for your next blanket. Discover the new season yarns and patterns too! There will be goody bags for the first 50 customers who spend £25 or more on Stylecraft. Not forgetting a fab raffle prize giveaway.

Christmas Jumper Day at the Craft Barn

Posted by Amy | Posted in Company News | Posted on 12-12-2017

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It’s that time of year again…..Save the Children Christmas Jumper Day is this Friday. As a little treat for anyone visiting the Craft Barn on Friday, we are having a lucky dip to help raise money for Save the Children charity. A £1 donation will get you one dip in our bag of goodies! See you Friday, lucky dip available while stocks last.

Arne and Carlos at Black Sheep Wools November 2017

Posted by Amy | Posted in Company News | Posted on 29-11-2017

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Last week we were very lucky to have the fabulous, Scandinavian design duo Arne and Carlos back at the Craft Barn. They taught a full day workshop, ‘A Master Class in Socks’, followed by a cosy evening talk all about their life designing, with an added sprinkle of festiveness.

Fabulous knitted baubles in Stylecraft Life DK yarn from Arne and Carlos book 55 Christmas Balls to Knit. Find more of the books from Arne and Carlos here.

The workshop had double the number of students an average full day workshop has 10-12. There was a cheerful mix of chatter and deep concentration. During the workshop everyone completed a mini sock in Regia Arne and Carlos 6ply yarn. Arne and Carlos taught the toe up method of sock knitting with a focus on the technique used for knitting an afterthought heel.

It wasn’t long before mini socks were knitted and a full size sock was whizzing along the needles. Here is a photo of designer and blogger Lynne Rowe testing her sock for size.

The room had been decorated with a festive hygge feel. Barbara unleashed her floristry expertise entwining garlands with ivy and fairy lights.

Once you start listening to Arne and Carlos, you are instantly swept away and enveloped by their cosy, or should I say ‘koselig’ Nordic lifestyle. Arne and Carlos shared that, ‘koselig’ is actually the Norwegian term to describe cosy and the Danish word ‘hygge’. The views from their lakeside home look magnificent, as Carlos flicked through the slides it was time for your mind to be transported and dream about the inspirational scenery they are surrounded by daily. One photo in particular was striking, a deep blue sky with an incredible full moon beaming down and lighting up a snow laden forest, the perfect weather for staying in, wrapping up warm and doing some knitting. Arne spoke about growing up in a traditional Norwegian village where he would knit by the fire place with 3 generations of his family – mother, grand-mother and great grand-mother.

Arne loves King Cole Tinsel. He couldn’t help but have a knitted i-cord on the go! Carlos on the other hand is not so much a fan.

Our lovely cake lady Sian was posed with the challenge of making traditional Scandinavian sweet treats. Carlos kindly assisted with a list of suggestions, Sian went for Cinnamon and Cardamom buns, they were a delight and got the seal of approval from Carlos. Along with a warm mug of Gluehwein everyone had a koselig evening.

At the end of the evening all members of staff had a group photo with Arne and Carlos. The end to a fabulous day!

For anyone who couldn’t make it to the Craft Barn to meet Arne and Carlos, be sure to watch their YouTube videos for inspiration. Grab a cuppa and enjoy delving into their creative world.