Kaua’i yarn shopping (Hanalei Strings & Things, Ace Hardware & Crafts)

Posted on by MK Carroll

Hanalei looking out over Hanalei, Kaua'i

I spent a recent weekend on Kaua'i and did a little yarn shopping while I was there. First stop was Hanalei Strings & Things, a little shop in the Ching Young Village Shopping Center in the middle of downtown Hanalei. It's a very touristy area with lots of shops and restaurants, and parking can be a little challenging during lunchtime on a weekend. Strings & Things combines yarn and ukuleles - Amy Singer would plotz.

Hanalei Strings & Things, Kaua'i Entrance to Hanalei Strings & Things

Hanalei Strings & Things, Kaua'i Guitars, ukuleles, and yarn

Hanalei Strings & Things, Kaua'i Books, notions, and yarn (including Kauai Botanicals hand-dyed yarns)

My visit was brief. You may have had a similar experience while vacationing with someone who is not into yarn? "Do you want to eat lunch first?" "No, you can do your yarn shopping first" - and then about 1o minutes later, it is clear that the person not into yarn is about to fall over from a combination of boredom and low blood sugar (I finished up my browsing, bought two skeins of Kauai Botanicals hand-dyed sock yarn, and we went across the street to Bubba's Burgers. By the way, Bubba's does old-fashioned burgers that remind me of In 'N Out). I did note that they have a pretty substantial inventory for a small space - lots of high-end yarns, some novelty yarns, books, patterns, needles, hooks, notions, and a cozy corner to sit and stitch at. Prices - like pretty much everything on Kaua'i - tend to be high. I'm sure the owner has heard plenty enough complaining about that - and it's an issue that they likely can't do anything about (welcome to the flip side of "life in paradise"). The Kauai Botanicals hand-dyed yarns were nice to see - there's a demand for souvenir yarn but not much available. These are yarns dyed with hibiscus, 'olena (turmeric), and red dirt (which Kaua'i is famous for). Various weights and fibers are available, and there was a lovely sample of a drop-stitch knit scarf done with pinky-mauve hibiscus-dyed ribbon yarn. I chose wool/bamboo blend sock yarn, one dyed with 'olena and one dyed with 'olena and hibiscus.

Kauai Botanicals hand-dyed yarns Kauai Botanicals hand-dyed wool/bamboo sock yarns

To the best of my knowledge, this yarn is available only at Hanalei Strings & Things.

Hanalei Strings & Things
5-5190 Kuhio Hwy
Ching Young Village Shopping Center
Hanalei, HI 96714
(808) 826-9633
Yelp (map and reviews): Hanalei Strings & Things

Later in the week, we stopped by Ace Hardware & Crafts. Yes, a combination hardware and craft store! Half of the store is your typical Ace Hardware, and the other half is your typical Ben Franklin Crafts store.

Ace Hardware & Crafts, Lihue, Kaua'i Ace Hardware & Crafts, Lihue, Kaua'i


Ace Hardware & Crafts, Lihue, Kaua'i Lily Sugar & Cream yarn, crochet cotton


Ace Hardware & Crafts, Lihue, Kaua'i Red Heart

There are yarns for making crochet leis with as well as a lot of Red Heart, a selection of crochet threads, Lily Sugar & Cream kitchen cotton, and Cascade 220. Needles, hooks, and notions too. This store is located in a more industrial part of Lihue, so not a lot in the immediate area for other attractions. Lihue is small, though, so it's a short drive to the beach and other businesses.

Ace Hardware & Crafts
4100 Rice St
Lihue, HI 96766
(808) 245-4091
Yelp (map and reviews): Ace Hardware Lihue

Yarn: Tasted!

Posted on by MK Carroll

So the yarn-tasting at the Hawai'i State Library downtown this past Saturday went well - but I didn't take any pictures, and when I realized that, immediately thought "great, now nobody is going to believe me." I had capped attendance at 25, figured we'd be lucky to get 20, and then 30 people signed up (and I think a couple more showed up).

Fortunately for me, Nadine Kam from the Honolulu Star-Bulletin was there, took photos, and blogged about it (thanks Nadine!)

Yarn 'Tasting' at the library (Fashion Tribe)

There were a couple of things I wish I'd managed to do differently - I'd wanted to talk more about knitting/crocheting for charity, and I also wanted to chat more with the attendees! I did get to talk briefly with a few people, but I wanted to hang out with *everyone* who attended - I hope I'll get to see some of them at an Aloha Knitters meeting, 'cause like I said at the tasting, you people are the ones I need to talk to - you don't need to be listening to me. Seriously, you should have seen some of the gorgeousness being kipped/cipped in that crowd! Thanks to all who attended, and for reals, I want to hang out with you all.

Most of the yarns in the tasting came from Isle Knit. The Maui Yarns came direct from Sara, and the Peaches & Creme came from Wal-Mart (and as I mentioned at the event, Wal-Marts nationwide are closing their craft departments - Ben Franklin has Sugar 'n Cream; if they don't have Peaches & Creme you might want to ask them about carrying it).

Oh, and someone had asked about a knit clothes hanger cover pattern in a book - I knew I'd seen at least one.

Twinkle's Weekend Knits by Twinkle Chia, and Glamour Knits at Home by Erika Knight both have a pattern. However, the library doesn't have those books at this time. There's a free online pattern by Sara Golder (Easy Coat Hanger Covers), though!

WWKIP Honolulu

Posted on by MK Carroll

A bit last minute, but just in case anyone has been wondering and didn't get the updates on Ravelry, Twitter, and the Aloha Knitters Yahoo! Group:

Worldwide Knit In Public Day: June 13 2009 (today!)
Aloha Knitters will be meeting in the center courtyard of the Aloha Tower Marketplace from 2 - 5 pm. I've added the marketplace to the map below in case anyone needs directions (the red marker sitting in Honolulu Harbor). If you plan to drive, I recommend finding street parking downtown and walking over - the Aloha Tower Marketplace does have a pay parking lot, and it gets very full rather quickly. Also, the Kamehameha Day Parade is today - it starts in downtown and goes to Waikiki; by 2 pm I'm thinking downtown will have cleared up but just in case, you may want to allow a little extra time for traffic.

View Larger Map

Yarn Tasting at the Hawaii State Library

Posted on by MK Carroll


My current plan is to have a short talk on the library collection of knit/crochet books and specific books particularly applicable for our climate, and then a quick review of the yarns. I haven't chosen and acquired all the yarns yet; Blue Sky Alpacas Organic Cotton and Skinny Cotton, Cascade Eco Wool, Lana Knits Hemp for Knitting, and a seacell/silk blend are on the for-sure list, though.

Quick update:

"Come to the library for quick reviews of knitting and crocheting books in the library collection and a yarn-tasting! Sample bags will include mini-skeins of yarns good for tropical-weather garments as well as yarns good for use in felting and making warm garments and accessories for cold-climate friends, relatives, and charitable organizations. Feel free to bring a project to work on during the presentation, or to show off afterwards if you like. There will be a brief Q&A session if you have any questions about knitting/crocheting in Hawai'i. No how-to knit/crochet/spin lessons will be given at this event; reviews of instructional books, videos, and DVDs will be included in the presentation, though, and a handout of yarn shops and where you can take lessons will also be available."