Earlier in this week, I wrote about changes -- about how they are constant and how things keep changing and morphing and how it seems impossible to keep up. Any business now - to remain relevant and in business - has got to have the ability and where-with-all to change. The yarn and craft business is no exception. Lots of times it takes thinking outside the box to stay in business, stay a leader, or become one.
Today I want to share with you what the fine folks at Classic Elite Yarns are doing now to remain relevant in this ever changing world. They have published a sweet print magazine called The Hub. The name comes from the first building that CEY was housed in in Lowell, Mass called The Hub Hosiery Building. I worked for 16 years as the Creative Director at Classic Elite and the company will always have a place in my heart.
I have watched from the sidelines since the early 2000's as the craft yarn business has changed. Local yarn stores are now competing with on-line sales and it is a struggle for any yarn store to stay in business. That said, there is nothing like visiting a yarn store and seeing, touching, and smelling (yes I said smelling - I always lift yarn to my face and give it a good sniff) yarns of different fibers, plies, and twists. The tactile qualities of yarn is something a computer screen cannot provide.
I applaud Classic Elite for helping to promote their customers - your local yarn store. Here's more about their new project.
The Hub Magazine is available exclusively at your local yarn store. The Hub features so much. I've included some not so great photos here. You are going to want to head down to your local yarn store to pick up your very own copy. It is 48 pages long and every page is full of beautiful glossy color.
There are several free patterns that are only available in print in The Hub. The first is this beautiful Aran called The Monument Mountain Pullover in their Vista - a gorgeous blend of wool and alpaca. Beautiful cables have always been a big part of the Classic Elite look and this pullover is stunning.
Classic Elite has always been known as a leader in trending colors. The Runway Wrap uses 8 colors (in 4 different types of yarn). The striping and color blocking looks current and I like the stair step edge.
The Hub isn't just about free patterns. There is a lot of great content to this magazine. There are features on designers in the biz.
Classic Elite Yarns is promoting their yarns and their local yarn store customers by hosting Knit-Alongs. The Hub features 2 different pretty and easy shawl Knit-Alongs. You can follow along with them on Instagram too where they share what many of their LYS customers are doing.
There is a feature on linen and knitting with it (always a little tricky). And a feature called "The Legacy of La Gran Mohair." If you have followed my work for years now, you probably have seen many of my designs over the years in this beautiful basic brushed mohair. It was/is a dream to work with. So soft and lofty. I love that CEY is still using the label I designed so many years ago. There is a cute little "Modern Mohair Pullover" design featured and a timeline of many of the past classic La Gran patterns. You can find many of them only on Patternfish.
There is a feature on washing and blocking sweaters and shawls. If there is step that I know that many knitters skip - it is the blocking. For me - that has always been the most important finishing step to any project.
So there you have it - The Hub. To get your very own copy, you will have to visit your local yarn store. Classic Elite has shipped the magazine to local yarn stores all over the country - whether or not the LYS carries their yarn or not. If your yarn store doesn't have it, tell them to call Classic Elite and they will send several copies to them to disperse amongst their customers. It is totally FREE - for local yarn stores and their customers. The patterns are not available anywhere else - not on-line or in print anywhere.
I applaud Classic Elite for taking the chance on this new way of marketing their yarns and promoting the Local Yarn Store. Let's hope it is a step to help Local Yarn Stores stay in business a few years longer.
Check out their website here and sign up for their weekly newsletter which always includes a free pattern.
It's Saturday - why not visit your Local Yarn Store?