101 things to do with Soak | 027 Carrie and Phil. Cottage companions.

Author: Ngoc

Every year, my friend’s family graciously opens up their house for our annual weekend reunion. They’ve been building this beautiful cottage for the past five years and we’re all very lucky to be able to catch up in such a relaxing and beautiful place. We’ve been going once a year since high school and it’s an annual trip that is eagerly anticipated by all. It’s the one time of the year where I get to see my friends that have moved away for work.

Carrie and Phil happened to be in my car so I decided to leave them out on the dock to see how my friends would use them. I snapped a few photos of them in action.

Phil holding some cottage essentials: dry towels, a good book, sunscreen and a pair of binoculars. We were lucky enough to spot a beautiful loon and haron while we relaxed on the water.

Carrie flipped upside down made a great foot rest.

The water was beautiful and we spent a lot of time hanging out on the floating dock. We kept sending one person in to grab drinks and snacks but with only two hands, you can only carry so many at a time. This is when Phil jumped in and graciously helped out. We were able to pile a bunch of drinks and chips in him and float him across the water! Once he made it to the floating dock, we used him to throw our garbage in so they wouldn’t fall into the water. How handy!

All in all, it was a very successful weekend with my new cottage companions, Carrie and Phil. Can’t wait to do it all again next year.


It’s Friday and I’m bagged. Week 29. Knit Nation.

Author: Jacqueline 

Grab a coffee or tea and join us each Friday, to learn how these Soak worthy bags came to be. Are you bagged? Send us your favorite bag. If we feature it here, we’ll send you a Soak gift pack, in a pretty bag, of course!


Last week there was a great party, with a super fantastic swag bag.  

The folks from Ravelry travelled across the ocean to host an event at Knit Nation, the UK-based knitting event. As we’ve just re-launched in the UK, we were a proud sponsor. While we haven’t got our hands on one of these decadent bags, we assure you, they are lovely! The party, as well as the entire Knit Nation event are rumored to have been fantastic!

We look forward to great success with leading yarn shops and haberdasheries in the UK market. 



If you are a UK based shop and would like some more information on Soak please contact our UK sales rep, Alice.

101 things to do with Soak | 026 The bright red canoe

Author: Ngoc

One of our customers sent us these fun photos from her latest weekend at the cottage. Feeling refreshed and ambitious, she decided pull out the canoe that hasn’t been used in far too long, and spend the evening out on the water.

With every intention of pulling out the big red canoe and dropping it in the water, she came upon a small hiccup. After being stored away for years and years, the canoe had collected a good amount of dust, dirt, mud, cobwebs and many tiny little critters.

Taking a look at all her cleaning supplies available at the cottage, she decided that she really didn’t want to put any of those cleaning solutions into the same water that she would be swimming in. So instead, she grabbed her favorite bottle of Soak in the nice fresh citrus scent. Soak is gentle and biodegradable so she felt assured that it wouldn’t be toxic to herself, or the friendly ducks that have joined her in the lake.


Using a sponge, Soak, and some elbow grease, she got her bright red canoe into tip top form.


Do you have a fun Soak story? Send in your Soak experiences to ngoc@soakwash.com. We’d love to hear from you!

It’s Friday and I’m bagged. Week 28. Good things come in three’s.

Author: Jacqueline

Grab a coffee or tea and join us each Friday, to learn how these Soak worthy bags came to be. Are you bagged? Send us your favorite bag. If we feature it here, we’ll send you a Soak gift pack, in a pretty bag, of course!

Today we’re celebrating the number 3. Three years at our new office, Chris’s third anniversary with the company and the third bag, I have yet to make. After bag one and two, I know exactly what I’d like; I just have to find the time to make it.e love our office; we can’t believe it has been three years since we moved in. Three years of forklift payments, three years of the ice cream truck, and three years to settle into this lovely space. I guess it’s not our ‘new office’ anymore. Either way, if you are in the neighborhood, do stop by for a visit.

Front entrance

Chris’s third anniversary with Soak is also this week. To celebrate, I made her a lovely bag. I started with an assortment of my favorite fabrics, some from Quilt Market, some from the Workroom all ones I knew she’d love. I included the supplementary pocket detail from my first bag as well.

I also added a bit of extra detail into this bag. For structure, Karyn from the Workroom suggests using canvas as an alternative to interfacing. It gives structure, without stiffness. Don’t forget to Soak and dry it first, as canvas does shrink considerably.

I wanted a detail that would reflect Chris’s three years. I worked on a few ideas for quilting into the outside of the bag and in the end, settled for a more subtle approach. I inserted three contrasting orange panels into one of the straps. Between you and I couldn’t get the full length of the strap from the fat quarter of fabric I had chosen, so integrating the contrasting panels into the handles helped with fabric yield and pattern continuity. 

Before assembling the bag, I worked my free motion machine embroidery magic to write on the bag. Truth be told, at a recent Quilt Sunday I played with one of the fancy Bernina machines that controls the stitch length while doing free motion and I fell hard and fast. For now, I get to stick to my current machine, controlling stitch length by hand. I am getting pretty good at it.

For my third bag to be, I’m going to focus on something a bit bigger, to fit in more work stuff while on the go. I’m also going to add more canvas structure to the interior of the bag, making it easier to distinguish one pocket from the other. I’m going to play with the machine embroidery a bit more; I love the subtlety of the texture and how the thread overlaps the various colours. As with everything here at Soak, it’s all in the details.


One of our wonderful readers, Amber, sent us a short email with a photo of a similar bag that she has made. We thought it was beautiful and wanted to share it with everyone.

“I love your bag.  Especially the one with the summery bird fabric!  I made this bag as well.  I really like how it turned out.  I did use canvas between the layers, but wish I would have thought to divide the pockets up more.  Really nice free stitching as well.  I’ve yet to try that with my Bernina.  Keep up the great stitching!

101 things to do with Soak | 024 Golf clubs and balls

Author: Ngoc

The other day when I went to visit my friend Ryan, I found him in his washroom with his golf clubs and a bottle of Soak. With the Canadian Open just wrapping up on the weekend, it seems appropriate that this weeks post is dedicated to the ever popular and frustrating game of golf.

So when I walked in to find him with his clubs and Soak in hand, I asked him what he was doing and he explained that he was going to wash his clubs. “Do you always use Soak?” I asked. He explained that he used to use dish soap, but one time he grabbed the bottle of Soak because it was conveniently located by the washroom sink instead of having to run downstairs to grab the dish soap. He went on to say that he now always uses Soak because it “just smells nice.”

I’m not much of a golfer myself, I’ve occasionally been spotted at the driving range but I don’t have my own set of clubs, so I’ve never had to wash them before.

To wash your clubs, you can give them a soak with handles facing downward and use a soft clean washcloth to gently scrub off any dirt and oils.

Then turn them around and dip the heads into the Soak water. You can use one of the handy golf club brushes to gently scrub the faces to remove the dirt stuck in the grooves.

You can leave your balls to soak dry them off with a clean wash cloth.

He explained to me that there are a few reasons to keep your clubs clean.

  1. A clean club face and ball will allow for better contact between the club and the ball during your swing. If you have dirt stuck in the groves on the ball and the club face, it makes the surfaces more slippery and gives you less control. He also made a jab at my golfing abilities saying that a person of my caliber probably wouldn’t notice the difference.
  2. Clean handles/grips will make them “tackier” and give you a better grip when you swing.
  3. A good club or driver is very expensive. And once you find a club that is perfect for your needs, you want to take care of it so it’ll look great and last longer.

It’s Friday and I’m bagged. Week 26. Amy Butler Frenchy bag

Author: Jacqueline

Grab a coffee or tea and join us each Friday, to learn how these Soak worthy bags came to be. Are you bagged? Send us your favorite bag. If we feature it here, we’ll send you a Soak gift pack, in a pretty bag, of course!

I’m feeling crafty. Small scale, weekend style projects.  A little spice in my sewing, a quick fix needed.

I was going through the pattern stash in the office and came across my trusted group of Amy Butler bag patterns.  Amy, the loveliest lady in the world, gave me a few patterns at quilt market. This is their lucky weekend.

I started my crafty journey last night, reading through patterns and sorting the remnants from my most recently cut out quilt. (more on that later).  I had made a few fabric piles and decided on the Frenchy Bag.  All I needed was some interface, a problem easily solved by a trip to the workroom on the way home.

This morning, while perusing flickr.com, I noticed Karyn’s posting of new fabric arrivals. Seriously, as I tweeted, how am I supposed to work with fabrics from home when she has the new Echino collection in stock? Apparently my cotton brights will be stunning linings.

Last week I had also come across a Japanese retail site for Echino print products.  I kindly requested that Karyn sort out stocking the insanely divine umbrellas in Toronto, just for me.  A girl can dream. Maybe if we all want them, we can place a big order from Japan.

Anyhow, I’ll keep you posted on pattern and sewing progress. I’m leaning towards incorporating some quilting techniques into the bag and will no doubt make more than one, in the name of  design, experimentation and an inability to decide on a single fabric.

I’ll still be stopping at the workroom tonight. I’m certain though, that I won’t just be buying interfacing.

It’s Friday and I’m bagged. Week 24. A French rendez-vous

Author: Jacqueline

Grab a coffee or tea and join us each Friday, to learn how these Soak worthy bags came to be. Are you bagged? Send us your favorite bag. If we feature it here, we’ll send you a Soak gift pack, in a pretty bag, of course!

What a week it has been. Out every night, early days in the warehouse. Seriously, I’m not 22 anymore!

Wednesday night, the highlight of the week, Lingerie Française Paris (the French federation of lingerie and swimwear) hosted its annual French lingerie fashion show in Toronto. The beautiful (why on earth have I not been there before?) Wychwood Barns  was the venue for a hot and sticky night of fashion and fun. 

lingerie Francaise

I was the guest of the lovely and talented shop owner Jen, from Secrets from your Sister (2 shops, one on Bloor, one on Yonge, in Toronto). We sipped champagne (followed by many glasses of water) and enjoyed a cabaret style fashion show filled with singing, dancing and style.

Hoisery tap performance

We brushed shoulders with industry insiders, distributors, sales reps and shop owners, including Soak retailer, Christine from Brava Boutique.

Following the extraordinary event we dined with friends such as owners Joan and Greta of The Spa on Main in Georgetown. Our dinner was hosted by Paul from Empreinte makers of my favorite bras. (Dear Paul, I love my new IVA bra, especially the Feather detail!)

No fashion event would be complete without a fun filled swag bag. We opened it up and divided the treats at the office just this morning. The bag wasn’t as photo worthy as the event itself, so I leave you with my favorite parts of this cabaret inspired performance. The open scene featured dancers en pointe with parasols and elegant lingerie. The lights were hot but you barely noticed for the lovely lingerie.


Mid-way through, between scene changes and singing, hosiery collections were shown in true cabaret style. With hats, gloves and canes, dancers showed the latest styles and textures, fall is sure going to be stylish and fun. Visit the Lingerie Francaise website for all featured brands and retailers.

It’s Friday and I’m bagged. Week 23. Literally bagged.

It’s Friday and I am literally bagged. I have a summer cold, so I’m going home.

Have a great long weekend, celebrating Canada Day or Independence Day, if you are, wherever you are. If not, try to sneak in a long weekend this summer, the extra day off is sure to cure my cold, it could do you some good too.
See you next week. Sniff, sniff, cough, cough.

It’s Friday and I’m bagged. Week 22. Loop. London.

Author: Jacqueline

Grab a coffee or tea and join us each Friday, to learn how these Soak worthy bags came to be. Are you bagged? Send us your favorite bag. If we feature it here, we’ll send you a Soak gift pack, in a pretty bag, of course!

While in London, we visited a myriad of beautiful shops. One such shop was Loop. Loop has been working hard in the last month as they have moved into a beautiful bigger shop at 15 Camden Passage, Islington (right around the corner from Angel tube).

They had their opening party last Saturday with great success. When Susan opened the doors to the new shop at 11am, she was greeted by 150 wonderful customers cheering and clapping.  the line

While their previous shop was lovely, the new shop boasts several floors, workrooms and equally brilliant neighbors.loop camden paassage 3 Loop also has a booming online business. We enjoyed browsing the shop for vintage buttons, yarns and magazines alike. I love the extensive use of the word Haberdashery in the UK. It is highly underused here in Canada. Seriously, where, here, would you ever find this phrase? ‘Pompom kits, olivewood buttons and knitting Nellys are just a part of the huge range of haberdashery available’. Soak will now be part of this great shop, both in its online shop and retail outlet. It’s no surprise I left the shop with a cute bag and some fab finds. That’s the joy of travel.

Loop is also sponsoring the opening night party of Knit Nation, a UK based knit event occurring this summer. If anyone can figure out how I can go back to the UK for this event, do let me know! More on that another day.

It’s Friday and I’m bagged. Week 21. The DryCast

Author: Chris

Grab a coffee or tea and join us each Friday, to learn how these Soak worthy bags came to be. Are you bagged? Send us your favorite bag. If we feature it here, we’ll send you a Soak gift pack, in a pretty bag, of course!

Two weeks ago today I rolled my ankle, and with nothing to hold onto, I fell.  I fell hard and broke my right ankle.  It happened suddenly and remains a blur.

The doctor in the emergency room said it was a clean break though I would be on crutches for 2 months. He put a plaster splint on my leg that was heavy, awkward and kept me immobile at my parents’ home. I had this monstrosity for 5 days while the swelling went down. A lot of knitting happened in those 5 days; so much knitting that my mother kindly went back to my apartment to get more yarn for me. My home is almost an hour from her home and the yarn was her only reason for going, just in case my mother’s sainthood was in question.

At the fracture clinic later that week, I got my fiberglass cast. Apparently they don’t make white casts anymore so mine is orange. I could have had soccer balls but I’m not that big a fan, World Cup or not.

I had a lot of questions for the doctor at the fracture clinic. As a single girl, how was I supposed to survive at home on crutches for 2 months? It isn’t really going to be 2 months, is it? Driving was out of the question, right? (I knew the answer to this one but sometimes I like things to be reinforced.)  How was I supposed to shower?

The night before I broke my ankle, I was giving my almost 5 year old niece a bath. While I was washing her hair, I said “one day when I’m rich I’m going to have someone wash my hair for me every day”. My mother washing it in the kitchen sink isn’t exactly what I had in mind.
I didn’t get all the questions answered to my liking though I did get told I could purchase a watertight bag for my cast so I could shower. The DryCast Waterproof Cover is pretty simple but it has made me feel so much better about the next 6 weeks. I’m back at home and feeling less dependent on others, even though Jacqueline is driving me to work every day and the girls in the office are fetching water for me.

It isn’t exactly how I’d planned to spend my summer. I’ll be well ahead of my Christmas knitting by the time it’s over, though.