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Thursday, June 14, 2012

Introducing Ann Norling...and a Knit Red Giveaway!

With a pattern collection of every design imaginable, Ann Norling is one of the industries brightest stars and we couldn't be more thankful for her help in Knit Red - have you seen her Spiral Rib cowl design? It's the perfect winter accessory! From hats to sweaters to her wildly popular Christmas stocking patterns, Ann has created one of the most extensive pattern collections we carry. There are patterns for everyone; from beginners to more advanced knitters - she has something that will suit your tastes! The possibilities truly are endless with Ann's pattnerns!

Ann Norling's Spiral Rib Cowl
On June 5th, we hosted a Knit Red book signing with Laura Zander and four designers who helped bring Knit Red to life: Kristen Ashbaugh-Helmreich, Jeanne Giles, Diane Soucy, and Ann Norling! We had such a blast meeting with these wonderful designers and getting our personal copies signed! To celebrate Ann Norling's design in Knit Red, we've decided to host a blog giveaway in her honor!

Diane Soucy's A-Line Hoodie
Ann Norling is actually the "nom de knit" of Marge Okuley, a yarn sales representative in Northern California and Northern Nevada. She often visits our store toting the latest yarn trends and her newest designs. Always smiling, Marge is a wonderful presence. She even gets special treatment - a little walk through Madeline Tosh Onesie land!

The day after Marge's 21st birthday, her father passed away due to heart disease. He was just 60 years old. Her personal connection to heart disease (and we like to think, her love for Jimmy Beans) was what made her jump on board with Knit Red the moment we approached her.

Jeanne Giles' Home Spa Set
The design phase of any project holds all the secrets to a designers finished pieced. As avid knitter's, we know just how important yarn choices are when starting a project. We often giggle at how personal the decision is - some yarn is just more chatty than others. ;) Marge is no exception to this rule! Her Spiral Rib Cowl is a drape-y knit 2, pearl 2 rib stitch with a twist - literally! She used the lovely merino wool blend of Crystal Palace Mochi Plus in honor of her friend, and fellow colleague, Susan Druding. Susan is the founder of Crystal Palace yarns and she too lost her father to heart disease. Marge thought it appropriate to design her Knit Red project using Susan's yarn as a tribute to both of their fathers. Connecting her project with two Stitch Red stories, Marge hopes this helps draw attention to everyone's risk of heart disease.

Kristen Ashbaugh-Helmreich's Tote
If we've learned anything over the course of the past few years, it is this: we're all connected in our efforts to spread heart disease awareness because so many of the designers, vendors, partners, and customers have been touched by this disease. We would like to thank everyone: all the partners who've contributed their Stitch Red stories to this blog, all the designers in Knit Red (and those participating in our second book - Sew Red!), The Heart Truth for sharing their knowledge of heart-healthy living, and to all of you! Without you - our wonderful costumers and supporters - this campaign would not have taken flight. We raise a glass of heart-healthy wine to each and every one of you - thank you!

With that, I'd like to give away a signed copy of Knit Red in honor of Ann Norling! Please leave us a comment on this blog post telling us your reason for supporting Stitch Red or what your favorite design from the book is. Even if you've already bought a copy, feel free to enter and win one to give to a friend or family member. We'll randomly select a winner and announce it in the blog post on Wednesday, June 20th. Please leave your comment by Tuesday, 6/19 at 11pm PST.

Thanks so much to all of you for your support! <3


  1. I like Kieran Foley's Knit Red Stole.

  2. I like the Aline Hoodie.

    This winter my mother had a Thoracic Aortic Aneurysm dissection. I am blessed that she is alive. It was an emergency. So heart disease hit close to me. My young niece who is one today was born with hypoplastic left heart syndrome (essentially half a heart).

  3. I'm not a 'red' person but the blueish undertones in this color, along with the confidence of Encore, is making my project 'something new' for me!! Thanks.

  4. This is such an awesome cause. Most if us have been touched by this cause. I lost my dad at 17 to an aneurysm and my mother in law to a heart attack 19 yrs ago
    Thank you for helping to get this message across

  5. My younger sister at the "young" age of 54 had a rare form of a heart attack that a lot of doctors are not familiar with, but nonetheless, she ended up in the hospital and had quite a scare. I would love to win this Stitch Red book to give to her to encourage her to continue to exercise, diet, and choose to live a longer, healthier life! I bet she would love this book!
    Thank you all so much for helping the word to get out about women and heart disease!

  6. On a Friday afternoon in November of 2009, I was bringing my mother home after a 2 week hospital stay and a 1 week rehab stint, she dropped just as she was entering her house. She never came out of it. She passed away on the next Monday morning. She had 2 arteries that were 98% blocked and they never caught it.

    Also, my sister's good friend dropped dead one day from the very same thing.

    I strongly support Stitch Red. I have even started a blog to "Stitch" Red in memory of them and others.

    Thank you for all you do to communicate this important message.

    I would be thrilled to win this book.

  7. I was so happy to come upon the Stitch Red group on Ravelry and to learn more about this wonderful cause. I lost my brother at the age of 34 with no warning whatsoever; he just fell to the ground with a heart attack during a charity softball game. I long for the day when no family will have to spend years missing a loved one lost to heart disease. Thanks and hugs to all who have done so much to support this cause.

  8. I am supporting Stitch Red in memory of my dad. He passed away in 2009.

    Debbie4 on Rav
    mcsix at embarqmail dot com

  9. love this cause! and i also love the a-line hoodie :) really pretty! raineoc@yahoo.com

  10. What great chance to win that lovely book.Thank you for the chance!!

  11. Such wonderful comments, ladies! @lorraine - I adore the a-line hoodie, how adorable!

    To those of you who have been touched by this silent killer, we truly appreciate you sharing your stories. This campaign is for you - let's stick it to heart disease one stitch at a time! <3

    On Wednesday I will be posting a winner, so stop by to see who the lucky lady is!


  12. I just saw the book in person today -- it is fabulous!

    About this time 40 years ago, my father died of a heart attack at age 42. It was quite hard on our family, as you can imagine -- I have 4 siblings. So our entire family is aware of heart issues and I can't tell you how wonderful it is to have this awareness go out into the community!