Get A Free Knitcrate ~ Today Only!!

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I just got this email and wanted to share because it’s such a great deal. If you subscribe today to Knitcrate, you can get a past crate for free! That’s a $50+ freebie!!!

Be sure to enter the promo code:freecrate when checking out.

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Come Dye With Me and Get 10% Off and Win A Dye Box !

The Dye Box
The Dye Box

 

I was sent a Dye Box from the folks over at BQueen Collection to try out and give my honest opinion.

What is a Dye Box you ask?

 
 
I’ll let BQueen break it down for you:
 

Our BQueen Collection Dye Box is a simple DIY kit for dyeing your own yarn naturally. By taking out some of the preliminary steps for you, we make it easy yet very rewarding to find color on a bare hank.

WHAT’S IN THE BOX:

  • At least 100g of quality yarn, ready to dye (we’ll change up the fiber content and yarn weight too!)
  • Every month is a different surprise yarn color
  • Natural Dye, already measured out specifically for your yarn in a cute little cork bottle
  • Your dye tools, consisting of nitrile gloves, stirring utensils, and a paper cup for mixing

 

What they don’t tell you is how addicting this is. My surprise color was just that — a total surprise. I had no idea the color in the bottle would change so dramatically. Check out the video below for a full reveal of the box and see the color change.

It was so simple and so fun, I loved the process of seeing what I was going to get, not only in the box, but the yarn color that results from the dyeing. The package was so beautiful and well thought out. You really didn’t need anything extra besides the pot to “cook” your yarn in. Now I have a beautiful, high quality hank of yarn to make a project with.

The Dye Box is available as a  monthly subscription. This was such a great first dyeing experience, I would love to do it every month.

If you’ve ever wanted to try dyeing, or know someone who does, this would make an awesome gift. I think you will love creating your own custom hank.
 

They Don’t Just Sell Dye Boxes Either

 
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They also sell crochet hooks!!!

There is a reason they call themselves the BQueen. If you notice the ends of each of the crochet hooks look just like queen pieces from chess. I have one of these on their way and I cannot wait.

You can choose your wood, hook size and topper and they will custom make the hook for you.

And if you notice in the picture, this may be the first wood hook that I know that does this, but they include a thumb rest on the hook so that you can easily orientate yourself without having to look at the hook. Such a great idea. I don’t have any other wood hooks that include this.
 

Didn’t You Say I Could Get 10% Off And Win A Dye Box?

 
You bet I did.

All you have to do is sign up for the BQueen Collection Newsletter here.

Once you confirm you email address, you will receive a 10% off promo code to use immediately and you will be entered to win a Dye Box.*

*The contest is open to everyone, wherever you live in the world and ends June 20th, 2016 so be sure to enter ASAP.

Now check out my reveal video and see some pictures of me dyeing the yarn below.*
 
*Note: the promo code is only for 10% off subscription boxes only, not $10 off (as I accidentally stated in the video). Sorry for any confusion.
 

 

Yarnbox February 2014 Reveal

What will it be?
What will it be?

I just got the newest Yarnbox last night and I can’t wait to share what I got. If you’re ready to see, keep reading. If you’re a subscriber and haven’t received yours yet, hide your eyes!

Look, yarn in the box!
Look, yarn in the box!

As usual, I’ll breakdown the contents and give my initial thoughts on my goodies.

Yarnbox Trading Cards
Yarnbox Trading Cards

I’m calling these Yarnbox Trading Cards from now on. They remind me of baseball cards, but instead of awesome athletes, I get awesome designers.

The two featured designers this month are:

1)Lily Prajogo (subscription includes a 25% off all purchases in her shop this month)

Plus you get her crochet Saltire Shawl as a free download ($6.oo)

I really appreciate Yarnbox giving us both a knit and crochet pattern in each kit and this crochet shawl is beautiful.

2)Kitman Figueroa  (subscription includes a 20% off all purchases in her shop this month)

Plus you get her knit Thorn Shawl as a free download ($5.oo)

This designer’s shawls make me want to learn to knit better. Her designs are absolutely beautiful.

Now for the yarn:

So soft!
So soft!

This month I received almost 400 yards (398 to be exact) of Phydeaux Designs Caresse Worsted Weight Yarn. ($33.00 a hank)

This merino, cashmere, nylon blend is a beautiful hand dyed yarn that is extremely versatile because of it’s content. Scarves, shawls, heanies, and so much more can be made from these skeins. I can’t wait to start working with this yarn.

So as you can see the overall Yarnbox was a great deal as usual. Not only is the discount on yarn and designers a steal, but learning about these companies and people I might never had found is something that can’t be measured.

Did you get a yarnbox this month? Tell us what you think about it below.  Plus see the video reveal below for more views of the beautiful yarn I received this month.

 

 

KnitCrate Feb 2014 Reveal With Giveaway ~ Caution ~ Possum Inside!

The Red Package Has Arrived
The Red Package Has Arrived

I just opened up my February 2014 Int/Adv KnitCrate and I am so excited to share with you what I received. As always, if you’re a subscriber and don’t want to know what’s inside, stop reading now!

KnitCrate Unpackaged
KnitCrate Unwrapped

For those of you still with me, I have to say, this Knitcrate has the coolest yarn I have ever seen.

The title of my post is foreshadowing the awesomeness to come.

But first, the rest of the goodies:

Promo Card with Free Knit Pattern
Promo Card with Free Knit Pattern

The promo card is near and dear to my heart this month. The reason being is that my little ol’ shop is featured on it.

There are 4 different promos this month as well as the Free Pattern:

Note: as always, I don’t share the actual promo codes (just what the value is to demonstrate the total value of the Knitcrate), you have to subscribe to Knitcrate to get those.

1) 20% off the featured yarn (which you’ll see in a minute) in the KnitCrate shop. ($3.00 a skein savings)

2) 50% off any pattern at Emily Peter’s Ravelry shop. Her Octopus Mittens are so cool. ($2.00 to $3.00 average savings)

3) 40% off your whole purchase in my pattern store. (infinite amount of savings!!)

4) 20% off any needle set in the KnitCrate shop. There are crochet hooks under the link as well so I’m guessing the hooks might count as well. ($10.00 + savings) 

Free Pattern: Beaded Cushion by Nathalie O’Shea ($5.00) This is a very beautiful pattern, and I’ll be giving it away to one lucky winner. See near the end of the post for more details.

Honey mmmmm
Honey mmmmm

1.6 oz sample of Rare Hawaiian Organic Kiawe Honey (approx. $4.00)

I tried a bit of this honey and it is delicious!

Such fun tea names!
Such fun tea names!

0.9oz David’s Tea in Read My Lips (approx. $3.50)

This tea company has a really great website and the names for their teas are so cute (ie. Brazillionaire, Glitter and Gold). I can’t wait to try Read My Lips.

Ever crochet with possum?
Ever crochet with possum?

3 balls of Zealana Kauri in color K14 ($15 a ball)

I am so excited about this yarn. I’ve never seen this brand before, but after checking out their website, I’m instantly intrigued and can’t wait to make something with this yarn.

What’s so special about this yarn?

It’s all about the blend. This yarn is:

  • 60% New Zealand merino wool
  • 10% mulberry silk
  • 30% brushtail possum

Yes, I said possum, and no, I had never heard of using possum in yarn.

He's pretty cute.
He’s pretty cute.

This is a brushtail possum and fur traders introduced them to New Zealand  (where this yarn is from, hence the brand name of Zealana). However, because there are no natural predators to this fuzzy guy in New Zealand, he’s become way too overpopulated.

What the New Zealanders have found though is when combined with wool and cashmere, they produce over 50% more warmth in the garments made from them. That’s pretty impressive.

Plus the Kauri yarn is a part of their performance line. So each 94 yard ball of yarn is machine washable and less likely to pill. so it’s really easy to take care of. Plus it’s actually really soft and I can only imagine it getting softer with washing.

I encourage everyone to go check out Zealana’s website. It’s really interesting to read about the yarn, they give even more information about the possum and all of it’s cool benefits of being used in yarn.

Now for the giveaway.

As most of you know, I am not a great knitter so you get to benefit from this every month. I’m giving away my code to download the Knit Cushion pattern to one reader. All you have to do to enter is leave a comment in this post about what you think about possum yarn. I’ll pull a name on Valentine’s Day Friday Feb. 14th and they will get the code.

Bonus if you are only a crocheter.

If you are like me and only crochet, I am going to give away a copy of my Hearts Abound Fair Isle Crochet Pattern (since it is Valentine’s Day) on the same day as well.

You will enter the same way, by leaving a comment in this post about the possum yarn. Just be sure to add that you are a crocheter.

If you do both (Knit and Crochet) you can state that as well and you’ll be entered for both patterns. Good luck!

Make sure to follow the blog as well so you never miss a good giveaway.

Here is a video unveiling if you want to see more of the possum yarn (as I am now calling it).

Yarnbox January 2014 Reveal

Yarn in a box
Yarn in a box

I just received my Yarnbox! I can’t wait to share with you what I got.

First off though, how cute is the box? The sticker reads, “Caution! Yarn inside. May cause extreme happiness.” After seeing what I got, they couldn’t be more correct.

First peek in the box
First peek in the box

As soon as you open your box, you are greeted with a glossy postcard that has been printed with information on all the goodies you are receiving. It’s a great resource to learn more about the featured designers and the story behind the yarn choice. This Yarnbox’s theme is “Fairy Lights” and you’ll see why in just a moment.

My haul
My haul

The whole Fairy Lights theme is very apparent from the yarn choices to the beautiful designer cards. Each item has its own glint and glimmer. Let me break it down for you and remind you that I paid $39 for the box (which can go down to $35 if I bought in a six month group).

Can you see the sparkly names?
Can you see the sparkly names?

First off are the designer cards. The are printed on both sides with glossy pictures of some the designer’s popular patterns. They also include discounts to use in the designer’s online stores. Both offered 20% off. Plus on the Yarnbox website, I have a library that stores the free patterns that each designer offers.

I received the Crocodile Hooded Cape from Lianka Azulay (retail $6.00) and the Snow Cap from Cheryl Kubat (retail $7.00). Both are beautiful patterns.

I also received a download for the pattern made from the yarn included in the box. It is a crochet pattern (yay!) called the Glittercloud Cowl made by the creative director for Yarnbox, Hannah Thiessen. (retail $3.50)

So the patterns and discounts alone could cover half the cost of the box, but the yarn included cemented my future with Yarnbox (as in, I’ll be sticking with the subscription).

So shiny!
So shiny!

Yarn #1: Knit Collage Stargazer Silk and Sequins in French Vanilla (retail $32.00)

This 100% silk yarn has brass sequins scattered throughout its 110 yard hank.

I don’t know what it is but I have always wanted to crochet with yarn that has sequins attached (must be my love of shiny things). I love the fact that I got this yarn in my box and can’t wait to give it a go. It is beautifully handspun and the “Fairy Lights” are very evident in it’s shimmery quality, plus there are the sequins…

Love the thick and thin
Love the thick and thin

Yarn #2: Knit Collage Pixie Dust Mini in Seashell Pink (retail $28.00)

Another lovely handspun yarn from Knit Collage. This yarn is made from 65% wool, 34% mohair, and 1% polyester and contains 80 fabulous thick and thin yards.

The colors are very seaside summer coral and it has a little sparkly that works well with the Fairy Lights theme.

Can you see the sparkle?
Can you see the sparkle?

I’m excited to unwind the hank and see how the color is distributed. I’ll be doing reviews for both yarns to see how crochet friendly they are so watch out for those.

So if you are keeping score, I surpassed my initial investment before we even reached the 2nd hank of yarn. All in all,  the value was almost double what I spent ($76.50 without taking into account any potential savings from using the promo codes I received).

Yarnbox has made a fan out of me.  Check out the video reveal below for even more sparkle!

I’m a Sucker for Mail Order

The excitement of not knowing what's inside.
The excitement of not knowing what’s inside.

For as long as I can remember I have loved getting mail. As a little kid, everyday I would rush to the mailbox to see if anything was addressed to me. Nothing has changed since then, except I get more mail — bills being the least favorite of course.

I know lots of people who avoid shopping online or through catalogs because they like to see the item in person before paying. I’m the opposite, I love the excitement of getting a package and seeing if what I chose is as good as I thought it would be.

However, there is one type of mail order that I have been reluctant to try even though it creates the most excitement of surprise — mail order subscriptions. I’ve never liked anything enough to warrant a subscription to it. $50 a month for the latest makeup or bottle of wine was just too big of a risk. However, I just came across a subscription service that is sure to please me every month — yarn.

I was reading my latest issue of Interweave Crochet Accessories and came across an ad for a business called Yarnbox. It is a yarn, pattern and goody box subscription. I was so intrigued I put the magazine down and started googling. Not only was there Yarnbox, but there was another exciting subscription service called Knitcrate.

I immediately decided to become members of both. Now I’m eagerly awaiting my two monthly boxes of yarn, but I’m not the only one to benefit from these. I’m going to be doing some stuff with these to help you out as well.

What will you (my readers) get from these subscriptions?

1. Unbiased reviews of the overall box.

I’m paying for these myself, I did not ask the companies for any freebies so I can be totally honest about what I’m receiving. I’ll do a price breakdown (as best I can) and make sure the subscription is worth it.

2. Video and picture reveals.

Share in the excitement of opening the box. I’ll share videos and pictures of the unveiling and my first reactions. The subscription retailers sell their leftover stock so if you’re afraid of the monthly commitment or not knowing what you will get, this will give you a sneak peek of what you can buy from them beforehand.

3. Reviews of the yarn and goodies.

I have a couple of favorite yarn companies that I work with on a consistent basis. This usually leaves me hesitant to try new brands and independent yarn companies. These subscriptions will push me out of my comfort zone with labels I don’t usually get a chance to work with. I’ll share with you my feelings about the yarn and how crochet friendly it is to work with so you can make a more informed choice when shopping.

4. Patterns made from the yarn.

Yarnbox asks if you prefer crochet or knitting, and Knitcrate is more knitting centric so I’m going to use my yarn for crochet good. If you are subscribing and didn’t get a crochet pattern, have no fear, I’ll use at least one skein in the kit to come up with a new free or paid pattern so you will have something to work with if you need it.

5. Giveaways

Some months I might make a pattern from one skein and have one leftover. Or maybe I receive a duplicate tool. I’ll host giveaways with items from the boxes so you can share in the fun.

Here is the breakdown of the two services in case you want to go join right now so we can get our surprises at the same time.

yarnboxYarnbox

Price: Varies from $35 to $39 per month depending on how many months are purchased in advance. They also have a bi-monthly (get a box once every two months) for $21/month (so it’s billed as $42 total for the box). Shipping is included on all subscriptions.

What I bought: One month subscription for $39 (will upgrade if I like it).

When it ships: Third Monday of the Month

Overall Impression of Website: Liked the fact that they asked me if I like to crochet or knit more. Hopefully that will translate into receiving crochet patterns and tools instead of knit. They also ask if you prefer small, large or no preference on needle size and bright or muted, or no preference on yarn colors. Not sure if the box will be tailored to my choices or if those are just survey questions that help shape what goes in the box. If you care I had no preference for needle/hook size and asked for bright colors. We’ll see what I get in a couple of weeks.

The website had lots of info on the program and was easy to navigate. Checkout was simple, they only take credit and debit cards, no Paypal. The charge already shows on my card so be ready to pay when signing up even though the box won’t ship right away.

knitcrate

Knitcrate

Price: Varies from $22.50 to $65 per month depending on what box you choose. They have 8 different subscription catagories (ie. baby, indie, fiberbox). They also have a bi-monthly (get a box once every two months) for $13.75 to 35/month. They also allow add ons. For example, suppose you purchase the baby box and want the fiberbox as well, you can add on the fiberbox at checkout for extra money. Shipping is included on all subscriptions.

What I bought: One month subscription for Int/Adv Knitter for $55 (I’m in no way an intermediate or advanced knitter but I’m hoping the yarn choices will include lace weight which is usually an int/adv skill set type yarn). I also purchased the “catch up” payment option which allows me to receive this month’s (January) box. Otherwise I would have had to wait for February.

When it ships: Middle of the Month

Overall Impression of Website: The website is loaded with stuff. Not only do they have subscriptions, but you can purchase past boxes as well as lots of knit and crochet goodies, a la carte yarn and patterns.

I saw past boxes that were made specifically for crocheters though that doesn’t seem to be an option any longer. Maybe not enough interest. Hopefully that will become an option once again. Maybe if anyone who wants to join after reading this tells them “Deja from Crochet Ever After sent me” they might get a hint to start carrying it again.

They do have a loyalty program and point program so you can receive points for reviewing their kits on their site and get freebies at your 7th and 12th consecutive month of Knitcrates, so that is a plus over Yarnbox. I’ll have to see if the yarn and goodies is enough to keep me subscribing if there is no crochet specific kits to be had.

So be sure to follow the blog if you want to see what I get when my boxes come in. And if you’re a member to either service let us know what you think about them below.