River Colors Studio Yarns

River Colors Journal

Friday, October 02, 2015

The Treehugger in me
I promise, we will get back to yarn related postings, but please indulge me just this one time for right now.  You see I do believe that this posting is somehow related to all of us crafters and makers in life. We move around in our daily lives and the time flies. At times we notice and are mindful of it flying, other times it just happens.The tree in my backyard is being removed today. This wonderful tree that has been part of my life for the past 23 years is extremely symbolic I have discovered this week.
 Of all things, I have been weepy all week and not exactly sure of the cause.  The cause surfaced today when I asked my husband to help me measure the circumference of the tree with a piece of yarn....as I requested his help I burst out into tears
Circumference measures to 13 feet 3 inches technically
Circumference beyond measurement in my heart

.  Poor guy; he looks at me and says I'm sorry Erika but, its dangerous the way the tree is right now.
 Of course, logical me knows that; but the part I can't control...the tears running down my face part can only think of so many things that happened under that tree for the past 23 years.   Right now I am trying to think of the positive things. Things like how wonderful it will be to have more sun in the back yard, no acorns dropping that have to be cleaned up, how many less leaves we will have to rake in fall, how the patio furniture will stay free of bird droppings, how we will hardly have to sweep the back porch as tree bark will no longer be falling.  Its funny though,  because for each of those items on the list, I have flashbacks of  good family time together(maybe not according to our children!).  As our kids were growing up, it was often one of those listed chores that made everyone work and spend time together.  It was a shared time together that made us talk and laugh and dance around while working. When the work was done we also shared the pride of a job well done.
 The tree needs to go because so many of the branches are dead and have the potential to drop and seriosuly hurt someone  And this is how I related this all to making and crafting. We have the potential to have these perfectly organized lives; every little thing neatly stowed away and clean.  But I think most of us get an incredible sense of satisfaction from the colors, the textures and the delight of experiencing the finished product.  The projects we have completed give us an incredible sense of being alive and a feeling of  productivity that no one can take away.  (and here all you thought you did was knit or crochet).

The Treehugger in me honors the Crafter and Maker in you!


Store Hours


Monday closed
Tuesday 11-6
Wed. And Friday 11-5
Thursday 11-8
Saturday 10-4
Sunday 1-4

Trying to find us for the first time? We are tucked behind Blackbird Baking Company(their signs are very obvious)

Permanent Link to Store Hours
posted by River Colors Yarn Store at 5:19 AM :: 1 links to this post

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

August Neighborhood Teaser by Rachel
It's hard to believe I am writing the twelfth and final Colors of Cleveland teaser!  I must say that the year has flown by while anticipating the arrival of the newly dyed colors of yarn each month.  Although I find each of all the neighborhoods special and charming in their own way, I must say I saved my personal favorite for last.  Those who know me are aware of my personal connection and experience with this neighborhood,and I love spending any chance I get bopping around the different restaurants and shops...especially in the summer months.  August in particular is a great time to visit this little hilltop town because of an annual cultural celebration which takes place here.

Part of the fascination of this project for me has been researching all these unique spots in Cleveland and learning the history and facts about not only the location, but the people who settled there, where they were from, and even about the architecture and significant landmarks to be discovered.  And this month's cozy little enclave was no different, I learned some interesting clues to share and get your wheels turning about where it might be!

This ethnic neighborhood was established in the late 19th century by immigrants mostly coming from a particular regional section of a Mediterranean country.  One in particular man came to Cleveland to start a stone masonry and sculpting business.  The business was a success and went on to contribute great works to the nearby Lake View Cemetery.  Other people settling this area were extremely skilled in lacework, garment making, and other embroidery trades.  Another fun teaser to think about is that here in this community was invented the macaroni machine in 1906!  Other major landmarks and social /religious hubs of the area are the Alta House, Holy Rosary Church, a variety of artist studios, and numerous restaurants and shops. 

I highly encourage you to explore this neighborhood this coming month of August for lots of celebrations and activities.  Have fun guessing where we are in the Colors of Cleveland!  I know I'll be making a trip over very soon, because I cannot go too long without a visit to my favorite bakery in Cleveland which happens to be here!

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

July Neighborhood Teaser by Rachel
As you all can probably tell by now, I love Cleveland's beautiful skyline and I'm continually obsessed with finding different points in the city from which I can see it.  So I was thrilled when I found a new spot with a front row seat while out and about on my adventures in the neighborhoods.  Thanks to the summer collaboration between Inner Bliss Yoga and the Tremont Athletic Club, I've had the fortunate opportunity to practice rooftop yoga at the historic Creamery building in Tremont.  Not only is this fabulous Sunday morning class free of charge, but it offers the chance to see a beautiful Cleveland landmark and best of all, when I stepped out onto the roof, I was facing straight ahead into downtown!

So along those same lines, my July teaser is also of a view of our city skyline.  Some of you may easily recognize this point depending on how much time you spent there over past years.  This section of Cleveland has definitely seen its thriving times and its slower times, but it is in the midst of a huge revitalization at present and I cannot wait to revisit and spend some time back here in this place along the water. "Summer Nights" is a perfect way to describe what I think of  when I think of this neighborhood.

Tuesday, June 09, 2015

Discussions around the table-"on the needles"
Recently a discussion arose around the table at River Colors Studio.  A customer came in looking for the right yarn for a new project, found it, happily purchased it and then sat down at the table and pulled out a different work in progress.  She had been so excited about the yarn for the new project that I was surprised she wasn’t already beginning to cast it on.  Oh, no, she said.  She had to finish what she was currently working on before she started a new project.

I admire that attitude and said so.  It is, however, not at all how I knit, and I said that, too.  Well, it would be okay to have two or three projects on the needles, so that you could alternate between them.  Sometimes you have to rest your wrists or your eyes, and some projects are just not good for social knitting occasions.  Everyone around the table agreed that a little variety was a good thing.

Just a minute, I said.  What constitutes “on the needles?” I asked.  Because there’s the stuff that I consider current projects, which the people with whom I live consider the clutter around my favorite knitting chair.  But I have far more projects than that actually “on needles.”

Gretchen made a good point: And if it’s more than just knitting, well, around my chair I have crochet projects, plus my drop spindle and the yarn I’m currently plying.  It’s all work in progress.  There were some nods of recognition around the table.  

But the stuff that’s in a project bag which has been relegated to the chest or the closet—it’s on the needles, but it’s not exactly in progress at the moment.  Or possibly for many moments in the past.  Yet I may still believe it has a future, so I am not yet willing to frog it.  There are a lot of projects like that in my craft area.  I think of them as gratification in waiting.  A hat that really just needs one more repeat of the lace pattern and then the crown decreases?  That’s a weekend of my time that will result in a gift ready for some occasion.  The sweater that’s in the middle of the boring stockinette part?  I might be waiting for a bad cold or a sprained ankle, but eventually that project will be exactly what I want in my hands.  So it stays on the needles, waiting for its moment.

That I am more than okay with these projects lying in a state of unfinished rest, neither ready to re-purpose the yarn nor finish the garment, clearly marks me as a “process knitter.”  I am captivated by the “how” of the stitch, the pattern, the construction—it’s a puzzle I want to solve.  Very rarely do I knit something because I want the object.  If I’m doing that, I have a deadline and those who have followed the progress of the pink chevron shawl have actually seen me work at one project steadily until it was done.  Well, there might have been some breaks for a pair of socks and a square for my Noro blanket, both projects that pre-date the pink chevron shawl by months, if not years.
Pictured above are the projects I consider currently "on the needles" on my favorite chair (and ottoman).  Clockwise from the Limited bag, I have Outlier  (shawlish), The Vampyre (shawl), Kirsten's Mittens, Chevron Shawl, bag of Noro squares for the Paintbox blanket, Mo Nighean Donn (shawl) and in the middle, a pair of socks.

The fact of the matter is that I am the master of my knitting.  There are no Knitting Police, and since it’s a hobby that brings me a great deal of pleasure, I do it the way I am moved to do it.  There’s no wrong way to enjoy knitting, except by turning it into an obligation.


Thursday, June 04, 2015

June Colors of Cleveland Teaser

June's neighborhood is one of the newest named neighborhoods in Cleveland, but has some of the oldest roots. (Doesn't that pretty much characterize our whole city--new energy revitalizing many layers of tradition and history?)

This neighborhood is a daily drive-by for many; it requires getting off the highways and main roads to find the treasures hidden within it.   Neighborhood life spills out into the street as the weather warms with a Sunday Market, Wednesday concerts and weekend events.   Small businesses dedicated to doing one thing perfectly complement each other along its commercial district.

This month's palette is inspired by the fresh colors of the local florist and the juice bar; the great views from the upper stories of building in the area and the sunshine that I associate with a fun and energizing day in June's Colors of Cleveland neighborhood.