Handmaid. A luxury hand creme from the experts at Soak.

Occasionally, we work on top-secret projects, to bring you new and useful products. We’ve spent the past few months cooking up such luxuries as our new hand creme. Enjoy.


Apply sparingly. Rub thoroughly. Get back to it.
Handmaid

It’s as simple as that. Available in your favorite (and current) Soak scents, aquae, celebration, lacey and of course, scentless. This little gem of a bottle is our new 3oz (yes, flight friendly, for your knitting bag, purse, toiletry case or weekender bag) 100% post-consumer resin bottle. It’s perfect for you, and the environment.

Ask for it by name, at your LYS. Invite your favorite lingerie or gift shop to start selling it. If you are a Soak retailer (or would like to become one) and want to start carrying Handmaid, let us know.

You can also find Handmaid on our website, if you just can’t wait to give your hands the love they deserve.

Handmaid is also part of another project we’ve been working on. Watch in the coming days, for updates and details on our newest project. We’re pretty excited, and we know you will be too!


Weekly Affirmation | meet Melissa

Every Thursday we post a comment, tweet, email or secret message we’ve received from one of our Soakworthy customers (stores, fans, consumers, friends). Sometimes, on a rough day, it’s really helpful to read an inspiring message from someone in our community. Someone who appreciates what we do. Someone who is as passionate about Soak as we are. We appreciate all the love that comes our way. Really we do. 


@Jacqueline_Soak I just bought a new bra and they wanted me to buy their lingerie wash. I declined since I had a big bottle of Soak at home.”

Thanks for the twitter love Melissa. This is one of Melissa’s lovely designs called Lily’s Lilies.

Melissa, knitwear designer: Soakworthy.


Handmade Ryan Gosling

We love you @HandmadeRyan. Thanks for including Soak! Goes to show we’re truly embedded in the knitting community as the leading wash!

Source: handmaderyangosling.tumblr.com via Jacqueline on Pinterest


Look what came in the mail today!

Crafty treats always inspire us. While it is the season to gift others, this week, Jacqueline’s Etsy acquisition is a little something for herself!

When mail comes to the office, it is often bills, inventory or office supplies. Sometimes, especially around the holidays, our Fedex, Purolator and Canada Post delivery trucks come more often, with lovely little treats. This is what I got this week.

It’s a pincushion ring, in pumpkin vanilla. It came in a lovely box, with a sweet card and some holiday gift cards. The pins were even Soakworthy colors. I just love it. It’s made by Liz Smith, who has a company called Made in Lowell.

It even had the perfect hangtag and ribbon. I love the little details. I can’t wait to wear it over the holiday when I work on my sewing and quilting projects.

It’s the little things in life that are the most rewarding. I hope you’ll find some time to treat yourself over the holiday. Share your Soakworthy craft finds with us, we love to see them!

Yup, I’m already wearing it at the office.


Wanna see my forklift?


Chris finished her baby blanket!

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After months of knitting, Chris finally finished this lovely blanket made of Gems, from Louet. This rich chocolate brown pile of warmth (as evidenced by Jacqueline cozying up at the office) will soon go to a new baby due any moment!


Let’s talk turkey, with a holiday gift set giveaway from Soak and Lorna’s Laces!

For those of us in Canada, this Thursday is just another fantastic day at the office. We’re long past the days of turkey, eaten more apple pie than should be eaten and are well focused on our holiday shopping. In an effort to support our American friends and the start of their weekend feasting and holiday season, we’re offering a couple of our new Lorna’s Laces + Heel holiday gift sets for you! We’ve shipped an abundant amount of gift sets to local yarn shops around the world.

We were packing,

then they were packing.

While the gals at Lorna’s Laces are focused on Turkey fixings like cranberry sauce or gravy, we prefer to ponder the likes of apple pie vs pumpkin pie. We’re giving away one of each of the following sets: Beverly with Peppermint and Purple Club with Scentless.

So the great task? Tell us in a comment whether you prefer apple pie, or pumpkin pie with your Thanksgiving dinner (or any time for that matter) and we’ll choose a random winner for each gift set. You have all weekend to eat pie and ponder your choice. We’ll keep the contest open until Sunday night at midnight. The winners will be announced Monday and the prizes will ship shortly thereafter. 

For a chance to win the other two sets, visit http://lornaslaces.blogspot.com/ and follow the instructions there.
If you aren’t one of our lucky winners, you can buy one for yourself or a loved one at your LYS or we have a limited number for sale at  www.soakwash.com. Follow us on facebook, twitter and Ravelry.com. Share the Soak love and good luck!

Happy Turkey, from all of us at Soak.


From Maker to Making a Living

Do you ever feel like your entrepreneurial skills are not up to par with your creative instinct? Do you wish there had been just one business class at art school? Are you facing more questions than answers related to your craft business? Our very own Jacqueline Sava has the solutions for you.


From Maker to Making a Living is a workshop series designed to guide craftspeople through the process of understanding, designing and building their individual businesses. Led by maker and award winning business leader Jacqueline Sava, attendees will be guided through an eight-part series of lectures, exercises and activities focused on the development of their own craft-based business practices.

The knowledge and skills obtained in these workshops will allow makers to successfully balance their personal craft philosophies with the realities of marketing, selling and profiting from their businesses. At the end of the workshop series, each craftsperson will have a custom plan to ensure a successful transition from where they are to where they want to be, and balance their personal craft philosophy with the realities of marketing, selling and profiting from business.

WHEN: From Maker to Making a Living will take place as eight evening sessions between 6:30 – 8:30 pm on the following dates, in Toronto, ON Canada:
Monday, October 3: Myth busting. Making money is okay.
Tuesday, October 4: Options. Exploring without losing your soul.
Tuesday, October 11: Personal branding. Understanding your purpose.
Wednesday, October 12: Business goals. Defining a vision.
Monday, October 17: Costing per product. Am I really making money?
Tuesday, October 18: Costing in general. All the other expenses.
Monday, October 24: Selling. Wholesale, retail, pricing, and all that jazz.
Tuesday, October 25: Charting the course. Deciding which way to go.

To register for this course, visit the Ontario Crafts Council website here.


Karen’s Wedding Quilt. (it’s for Chandler too, don’t worry)

Author: Jacqueline

Home is where the heart is and where I go to sew.


Summer as usual. Great classes at the workroom and my schedule is too busy to take one. Class in question this summer? Johanna Masko’s Machine Paper Foundation Piecing: Houses class. I’ve been meaning to make a wall hanging for home, (translation, smaller quilt project that can actually be finished and enjoyed in newly renovated apartment)  and I’ve also been meaning to take one of Johanna’s classes. I keep daydreaming while reading Karyn’s blog, watching progress, enjoying the project sampler, dreaming of making my own house.

Weddings are also part of summer and I was looking forward to the wedding of my friend (and award-winning photographer, in case you need one) from college Karen, who lives in Brooklyn, NY. Originally from Montreal (we were immediate friends, both Canadians at RISD), Karen  may soon be moving to LA. They’ll likely keep residences in both locations, as home is where the heart is.

365:148

While looking through their bridal registry, I realized that I really wanted to make them a wedding gift rather than buying one. I know their Brooklyn pad is small, so a full size quilt seemed neither practical nor realistic. Plus, if they are moving to LA, large objects are not ideal for transportation. 

After a bit of thought, and growing jealousy as I saw students from Johanna’s class begin to construct their houses and landscapes, I realized that I could transfer my envy into a house of my own. A Brownstone, for Karen and Chandler, so that even if they move to LA, they can take a little piece of Brooklyn with them. Okay, so they don’t actually live in a Brownstone, but it is a beautiful building that called out to be drawn in fabric.

Here is the process of how this little building came to be. From Google maps, to drafting, fabric hunting, cutting, sewing, pressing and sewing again. Birds, flowers, windows and clouds all came together to make a one of a kind gift, a labour of love for my good friends. In my usual way, I paid great attention to the back as well as the front, drawing inspiration from the invitations for this personalized patchwork homage to their home.

Both tutorial and roadmap, may this journey inspire you to draw your own home in fabric.

Additional images can be found here. Enjoy.

Google Maps. Satellite. Perhaps the first useful reason to look up a friend’s home. The ability to retrieve many photographs of a building in another country, without having to send a friend into the street. For future reference, I did confirm with Karen that she did live in this building.  Be aware, too many questions draws unnecessary suspicion.

organizing fabric 1
I then sketched out a section of the building and used the handy dandy office photocopier to enlarge it to a reasonable ‘wall hanging’ size. From there, I taped it together and placed some graph paper on top. I am pleased to say I used the last giant piece of drafting paper I have held onto for decades. I never wanted to throw it out, knowing that one day, I’d actually use it. I am both glad I had it for this project, and glad it is out of my life. Storing rolls of paper is challenging.

full scale drawings and fabric
I used a think marker to outline the structure and planned the various sized windows, doors, entrance and roof line.

sketching details of the building

I stopped at the workroom on the way home one night, to seek out the perfect stash of fabric for this project. Some sky, some brick, window materials and trim. I also asked a couple of unsuspecting crafters if this project seemed a bit crazy to take on, with less than a month until the wedding. They said yes. In retrospect, they were right, but I loved every minute of it, day and night.

Even though this piece will be wall art, I felt compelled to pre-wash all the fabrics with Soak. It was an Unleash kind of day. I am the one at the office who receives the calls when wall art quilt pieces suffer colour runs or other laundry crises, so always best to pre-wash.

First section first, a simple panel with some angles and sky. I wanted to ‘test the waters’ on this project. I realized, that unlike the formal class at the workroom, where paper piecing is an art form and each student’s house is the same size, I was drawing with fabric and my grids and graph paper were becoming more guides than gospel. As I completed the first panel, the project began to take on its own life and I became consumed.

the first full panel

The windows are my favourite part. I created tiny tuck pleats to replicate the panes of glass seen in the building. As I worked across the image, I took a break from bricks and windows to create the front entrance.

I made larger than life flower pots with liberty print flowers (what else?) and allowed the feature light bricks to become the focal point of the structure.

building the front door 1

Since my satellite images blocked most of my view, I allowed myself creative freedom to imagine the building, or at least how the building might appear as if it were made of fabric. The castle top of the building proved great fun. An homage to my friend Katrina, I actually cut and measured exact squares with exact seam allowances so they’d be even.

working on the sky
When I finally finished the front, I realized I hadn’t yet considered the back. That same day, Karen’s wedding invitation arrived by post, providing inspiration for the back and finishing details. The shade of red and variety of prints in the invitation ( I LOVE envelope linings) sent me rummaging through my fabric stash in search of reds, dots and lines. I found the off-cuts of a quilt I made last year, pieces 6-12 inches wide from the trim of a patchwork back, in all shades of red. It was perfect.

wedding invitations inspire the back colours 1

Using my free-motion stitch regulator (thank you Ted) I named, dated and signed the quilt before assembling the various pieces of the back. It’s hard to see the writing, but that’s the point, I guess. It’s not obvious, you just need to know it’s there.

signing and dating 2

Once I finished the back, I pieced it with the front, batting et al.

I used my walking foot for most of the quilting, following the diagonal brick work designs of the original building and outlining some of the windows. I’m a bit addicted to stitching in the ditch. In my next project, I might purposefully avoid the ditch, in an uneven, asymmetrical kind of way. Once I had covered enough brickwork, I used the free-motion foot to embellish the lighter front of the building. I put the building number on the awning and swirled around until the fabric itself told me I was done.

I added some clouds to the sky and I was set.

Binding

I tried to find the perfect binding fabric and realized that the building needed to be a continuation of each pattern piece. The sky needed to continue and the building needed to continue. No framing necessary. I added three hanging ribbons along the top and sewed on the binding. I made a note to myself that I must either find my box of binding clips (clean my studio) or buy more. Random bobby pins will not cut it. It is worth noting though, that the paper clip worked shockingly well.

assorted binding clips

I’m giving them a Lantern Moon bamboo hanger as well. This is the kind I have at the office holding up another quilt. It’s my favorite. I don’t think it’s fair to give someone a hanging quilt without telling them how to hang it. Some people prefer invisible hangers, although upon investigation, I couldn’t find one that was both fantastic and readily available. I like this design, it matches the brickwork and hopefully Karen and Chandler’s home, be it in Brooklyn, LA or wherever their life takes them.

the front


Another hat saved…

We love when Soak users are so happy with their results that they have to send us an email or call us to say thanks. Send us your great Soak rescue story with photos and we’ll feature it on our blog.


Shireen specifically seeked us out at the Knitter’s Frolic so she could meet us and tell us about how Soak saved her hat. She had lost a hand-knit hat last fall and after the snow had all melted this spring, her friend found it looking quite sad and dirty. With some Soak, she was able to give life to her hat again. You can read her full story at her blog, The Blue Brick.

Before

After

You would never know that this beautiful hat had spent a hard cold winter buried under snow, slush and mud.

Thanks for sharing your story with us Shireen!

Send us your Soak experiences to ngoc@soakwash.com.