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.
castdrawing

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.
CastTub
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.


It’s Friday and I’m bagged. Week 20. Loop.

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, as we set up our booth at TNNA, the National Needle Arts Association tradeshow, in Columbus Ohio, we celebrate Loop, in Philadelphia. Our first ever Soak retailer in the USA. Way back when, May 24, 2006 to be exact, Soak crossed the border for the very first time. It was just before our first TNNA, in June of that same year.

Loop window

Who knew that four years later we would be sponsoring parties, working with Ravelry, Louet and other such spectacular companies, dominating the wash category in the knit world? We are thrilled with how our business has grown over the years, as well as how our beloved customers covet our brand.

If you are reading this in or on your way to Columbus, visit us at booth 851. If you are online, check out Loop, as well as their sister store next door, spool. It’s my Mecca, a yarn shop next to a sewing shop, both with friendly staff and great finds!

Craig, owner extraordinaire, has a fantastic blog as well. loop store
I love my Loop bag. I use it for going to the market and going to work. It’s lovely and lively. It always reminds me of how hard we work to build our business and just how lucky we are to work with such great people.

Loop

Not a Soak retailer yet? Get in touch and we’ll hook you up. Would you like to recommend your LYS to us? Email us today!

Be sure when rummaging online not to confuse Craig’s Philadelphia gem with the other Loop, Soak stockist. Loop is also the name of a lovely London, UK based shop but that’s a story for next week.

Share This

Add to FacebookAdd to Twitter


It’s Friday and I’m bagged. Week 19. Melt.

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!


There has been great debate about whether this blog is about just Soak, or great products in general. Is it commercial, or personal? Is it promotional or creative exploration? Well, we’re not ready to commit either way, but we feel that anything that inspires us enough to share should be included.

Sometimes it is about Soak, sometimes our customers, sometimes, like today, brilliant design, merchandising and products in totally unrelated fields. Today, I bring you, Melt.

While in London (yes, there’ll be several posts about great British discoveries), we discovered, at Liberty of London in the ‘confectionery department’, Melt chocolates. More specifically, hot chocolate lollipops.  A stick of perfectly square chocolate, wrapped in vividly coloured papers, filled with deliciousness.  Single origin hot chocolate blocks, as they are called. Hand made in their own kitchen.

Directions: swirl the lollipop in steeped milk and enjoy. How decadent.

A few steps from Portobello Road in a posh neighbourhood in Notting Hill, we found a Melt retail store. There were bars of chocolate, truffles and other caramel treats in the most perfectly elegant space.

There was even a Melt bike for carrying chilled bundles of deliciousness around town.

As I was leaving with my perfectly lovely bag filled with hot chocolate lollipops, I couldn’t resist photographing the shop, to share it with you. From brand to bar, Melt is a true example of a leading company. Check them out; we hope you’ll be as inspired as we were. Oh, and yes, the hot chocolate was delicious!


It’s Friday and I’m bagged. Week 18: Part 2, Feast of Fabric.

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!


IMG_4212

Katherine called it the Mother Ship. Some refer to it as Mecca. You may know it as Liberty of London. This London-based department store is, in my opinion, the perfect store. I could live there (on the fourth floor, in modern antiques/home textiles to be exact). I would venture to the second floor for cosmetics, linens and art deco printed towels and go to the ground floor for sweets, garden accessories and an endless supply of scarves. 
IMG_4201

Most importantly though, I would spend time on the fifth floor, in the haberdashery. Four walls. One yarn, one fabric, one crafts, and one of books and trinkets. An endless wall of Liberty prints is truely my quilting dream come true. I bought six half yards of decadent fabrics as well as an assortment of cotton hankies and scarves.IMG_4203 

There’s a Rowan concession, filled with Amy Butler fabric, Rowan yarns and knitters who demo yarns and books all day long. They can knit on the job, but they can’t sit. One lovely lady told us it took three months for her arms and back to adjust to knitting while standing up.  Best of all, when we talked of our Soak travels, they had heard of us! Fancy that. 

More London updates upon my return. I’ll be flying home when this post goes live. I hope my fabric stash will accept my new Liberty prints with the same enthusiasm with which they were purchased. I can’t wait to get them home.


It’s Friday and I’m bagged. Week 17: Mission accomplished. Well, the first half.

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’ve travelled across the Atlantic to see the Quilt Exhibit at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London, England. This morning, we started off at Quilts 1700-2010. What a way to start the day. The exhibition includes historical work created in the UK from eighteenth century patchwork through to modern times. My favorite piece was a quilt made entire of wool by a tailor, James Williams, of Wrexham, Wales, 1842-52. He, yes he, used left over pieces of wool from his tailor shop and spent over 18 years making innovative quilts.  Following the exhibit I went to the shop to secure a stash of limited production, reproduction fabrics made especially for the show. Needless to say, my bag was full. 

 

I bought fat quarters galore, and don’t worry dear quilting friends, you know who you are, I bought fat quarters and treats for you too.  We bought one copy of the show catalog, which I’ll surely bring to the next Quilt Sunday

Incidentally, I’ve also been photographing inspirational patterns as I come across them on my travels. A new sketchbook is surely in the works… but that’s another story. 

 The second half of the journey you ask? Liberty of London, on Thursday. 


It’s Friday and I’m bagged. Week 16: Have hat, will travel.

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!


It is a hectic Friday at the Soak office. I leave tonight for the UK. While the main purpose of our trip is pleasure (fantastic family wedding in a castle!), I’m also meeting up with Alice Yu our new National Account Manager, UK for the yarn market. We’re really excited to have Alice join us as part of our team.

While there, we’re planning on a visit to Loop, where we’ll be hanging out with owner Susan Cropper. We’ll be bringing treats for the grand opening of their new shop on June 12- on Camden Passage, in Islington, London. Their new address, in case you are in town after June 12th, will be 15 Camden Passage, Islington, London N1 8EA.

I’ll also be meeting Robynn, of the extraordinary shop Purlescence, as well as the ladies from the make lounge. How exciting! I’m sure there will be many other stops (Liberty of London, V&A museum) that will delight my senses and satisfy my need to rummage through textiles and other fun finds.

Speaking of rummaging, back to the above mentioned wedding. I’ll be sporting my favorite navy and white dress and shoes, only this time adding a bit of British flair to the outfit with my new (and lovely) hat.

I found this and other fine works of millinery last weekend when Karyn, Chris and I trekked to Brimfield Massachusetts for the Brimfield Antique Market. We walked through miles of antiques, textiles and treasures to find unique items and treats.

Sometimes a hat box is better than a bag. This striped one is the perfect way to protect my new hats, one of which is already packed away for travels.


It’s Friday and I’m bagged. Week 15: The yoga bag

Author: Ngoc 

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!


Mother’s day is just around the corner and Dafina brought in this sweet plant that her son lovingly grew for her to show his appreciation. For those of you who don’t have a green thumb consider giving your mom a gift certificate to take some yoga lessons. 

 

Yoga is meant to be therapeutic and unite the mind, body and spirit. There are many physiological, psychological and biochemical benefits of practicing yoga. Visit the ABCs of yoga to learn more about how yoga can enhance your life. 

 

CNIB is running a national yoga campaign, the Great Canadian Yoga Stretch, for the month of May in support of blind and partially sighted Canadians. Soak is great for washing yoga gear so we’ve been asked to contribute mini-soaks to be given out in the goodie bags to all of their participants. 

As I was exploring their site and reading about yoga, it was interesting to learn about all the products offered to enable those who are visually impaired to safely learn how to practice yoga. With a VIYM and a cd with step by step instructions geared towards those with little no sight, even someone who has never tried yoga can easily learn. 


It’s Friday and I’m bagged. Week 14: The Brag Company

It’s been a busy month filled with travels, lingerie, and trade shows here at the Soak office and it’s only going to be busier in May. Just this past week we made a trip to visit Jen from Secrets from your Sister and we’ve acquired some new beautiful bras that we will be taking with us on our travels. If you’ve ever stuffed a bra into your suitcase, then you’ll know that sometimes they don’t quite survive the trip. You end up with squished cups and creases. Next time try a bra bag from the Brag Company.


Jane from the Brag Company has given us some great bra bags and panty paks that protect and organize your bras and panties while on the go. The bra bag has a hard outer shell and can hold up to 6 bras. 

 

They also make convenient panty paks that have two separate compartments, one for clean panties, and the other for not so fresh panties. 

 

These cute bags are particularly handy at the end of your trip when organizing your suitcase is not at the top of your priority list. The bra bag will discourage you from just stuffing your bras into your suitcase which can squish the cups and cause creases.