We’re excited to work with the following companies, all of which are in our store for a reason. Many of them are family-owned businesses. Some of them are local to Southern California. And others are run by “cool folks” we’ve met at Vogue Knitting, Stitches West, the LA Yarn Crawl, and other fiber-related events.
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ASHFORD HANDICRAFTS, a New Zealand-based company, is family-owned and has become a world leader in the manufacture of quality spinning wheels, weaving looms, and textile equipment. Ashford wheels, looms, and carders are the result of more than 80 years of experience, customer feedback, research, and development. Available in natural wood or finished with eco-friendly water-based lacquer, they are designed to be simple, easy to assemble and fun to use. It was in Deborah Jarchow’s class at Vogue Knitting Pasadena that Susan tried weaving for the first time…and went home with a brand new Ashford Rigid Heddle Loom. “It's so much faster than knitting!” she exclaimed.
BELLATRISTA creates luxurious, exotic yarns that are unique in the marketplace. Current lines include 100% milk fiber yarns, 50/50 blend of milk and bamboo, and 100% soy fiber yarns. All yarns are available in a variety of weights and plies, from fingering to bulky. According to the company, “Our yarns…enable handknitters and crocheters to create garments and accessories that are truly remarkable.” And we agree! When we first conceived Izzy Knits, we wanted to ensure that we offered yarns that were environmentally-friendly as well as unique. Bellatrista’s yarns fit that bill, plus, we were won over by their silky softness. Personally, Susan can’t wait to weave with them!
CHIAO GOO was founded by four brothers who were born and grew up in Linan, “The Bamboo Capital of China”. Their grandfather was a bamboo craftsman who spent the majority of his life traveling from town to town with his bamboo tool kit, making household goods such as chairs, tables, mattress sheets, rice barrels, baskets and steamers. Their father followed in grandfather’s footsteps and was able to build a workshop in the early 1980s at the birth of the primitive free market in China. While the workshop produced similar household goods, the primary product was bamboo knitting needles. Demand for the knitting needles originated with their mother, an excellent knitter, who knit in order to keep her family warm during the long, cold winters. She would often knit extra items and sell them to neighbors and friends to make some extra money for her family of seven. Once Susan started using Chiao Goo's TWIST Red Lace Interchangeables, she was hooked, and the decision was made for Izzy Knits to almost exclusively sell Chiao Goo needles.
DELICOUS YARNS serves up yummy treats that look like they just came out of the bakery or soda shop! It’s the brain and belly child of Marcy Winter and Jacqueline Pinson. It started in the pots and pans of Stitch Café, a cozy little former knit shop in Valley Village, CA, where Jacqueline cooked up palatable potions as a dyer in the shop's studio/kitchen. In 2008, Marcy took ownership of the shop, and that’s when the magic happened. Marcy’s vast knitting and crochet experience, paired with her keen eye for style and design brought just the right spice and specificity to Jacqueline’s “pinch of this and dash of that” ways. With a shiny new set of measuring spoons, the two set about making the kind of yummy yarn they had always wanted to work with – savory tones with a touch of tang to keep things exciting, and yarn bases that are feasts of fiber decadence. Izzy Knits couldn’t wait for its first serving of Delicious Yarns, so we drove to Valley Village to meet Jacqueline and pick up our opening order. That's when we got a tour of the “kitchen” and a peak at all the goodies available. Delicious!
JADE SAPPHIRE is a small, family-owned business started by Jane Saffir, a passionate knitter, and Ken Scheck, her fiber enabler. At a time when cashmere yarn was almost non-existent in the world of knitting yarn, Jane and Ken traveled to China and Inner Mongolia to source it. In an effort to “free cashmere from the twin set and string of pearls”, they offered 100% cashmere yarn in an array of weights and hand-dyed colorways. Now, with more than 200 colors and a full line of cashmere and other exotic blend yarns sourced from China, Inner Mongolia, Italy and Scotland, they are the largest cashmere supplier to the hand-knitting community. We were first introduced to Jade Sapphire by designer Suzanne Nielsen, who was wearing a stunning mobius cowl that she designed specifically for their 100% Mongolian cashmere Mini Ombre Collection…now sold as a kit in our online shop.
JO SHARP is an Australian knitwear designer who has her own yarn collection as well. A signature element of her designs is an elegant, earthy simplicity. She is passionate about creating contemporary garments that are truly wearable, comfortable, and easy to knit. She even has designs suitable for beginners within her collections. Jo Sharp's studio is located in Albany, a historic tourist town nestled between mountains and sea, on the south coast of western Australia. A prime wool-growing region, Albany is also home to winemaking, micro-breweries, oyster farming, and many other small-scale agricultural ventures. Besides loving the clean lines and contemporary style of Jo Sharp’s designs, Susan has "a thing" for everything Australian, having lived there as a student. Jo Sharp's yarn is no exception.
KNITTING FEVER Knitting Fever Inc. (KFI) has been working with Izzy Knits for years as the US distributor of Noro yarns. But KFI has a unique story of its own. It was founded in 1974 as a needlepoint and knitting store in Great Neck, NY, where owner Sion Elalouf was inspired by the beautiful and exotic nature of European and Japanese yarns, as well as the talented textile artists he met in his role as shop owner and yarn buyer. In the 1980s, KFI transitioned from retail to distributorship, focusing on bringing these same specialty yarns and fabulous designers to other retailers across the USA. Today, KFI continues to supply us with all the Noro yarn you see in our shop, in addition to KFI-exclusive yarns and other noteworthy brands.
LANA GROSSA's motto “Always Something Special” has made it a successful specialist for knitting yarns throughout Central Europe. Lana Grossa stands for both premium quality and creative designs. Its production program covers everything that’s in fashion and everything that makes you want to knit your own fashion garments – from imaginative yarns in innovative materials to classical sock yarns. Only the best is good enough. Every yarn must have its own message, a special structure, a modern image or unique functions. Produced exclusively in Italy, Lana Grossa yarns are featured in some of Izzy Knits’ most popular weaving patterns and kits, including Deborah Jarchow’s Cin Cin & Silkhair Print Poncho.
LEADING MEN FIBER ARTS captured our attention at Stitches West 2018, where we fell in love with partners Steve and Andy and their hand-dyed colorways inspired by the theater, pop culture, and nature. They truly are the Leading Men in the world of COLOR. Established in August 2013, their dye studio is located in Central Illinois, from which they travel the country attending shows and festivals. When it came time to choose the colorways we’d sell in our shop, Susan spent hours mixing and matching from 100s of semi-solid, variegated, speckled, and gradient options to come up with several color-driven “collections”, all of which we think you’ll love. We’re total fans!
LYKKE CRAFTS is named after the Norwegian word for happiness. Their knitting needles and crochet hooks certainly live up to the name, leaving users happy with their products! LYKKE Crafts combines high quality materials and thoughtful design to produce beautiful, durable needles and hooks. We first spotted Lykee’s needle and hook sets during the 2018 LA Yarn Crawl. Each set was displayed in an elegant, modern-looking case that not only provided storage but displayed the product beautifully. We just had to have them for sale!
NORO yarns blend natural unevenness, asymmetric pattern and complex color to mimic the beauty of nature. Founded by Eisaku Noro in Japan, where all the yarns are still produced, Noro is committed to procuring animal fibers from only certified organic farms and to implementing creative production methods to minimize its impact on the environment. Personally, we're drawn to the organic quality of the yarns. We feel an almost palpable connection to nature when we work with them and are continually surprised by each yarn's rich color palette and raw texture. Working with Noro yarns is a truly sensory experience.
PURL & LOOP’s small Houston studio workshop is home to seven people and two dogs. All human staff is paid a living wage, and canine staff receives deluxe housing and organic food and treats. The human staff all work for Purl & Loop part-time, and by purchasing the products they make, you enable them to support growing families, purchase first homes, pay for college tuition, and fund creative dreams. Their longest serving canine team members are Audrey Pearl and Hank. They served as companions to Angela, who started the business in her 100 sq. ft. home studio, and now serve as honorary studio assistants in Purl & Loop’s East Downtown (EaDo) space. Who doesn't love a company that includes canines on their staff?! Considering Izzy Knits is named after our beloved Schnoodle Izzy, this partnership was a no brainer. Not to mention, we love Purl & Loop’s little looms, which are our go-to for weaving swatches.
REYWA FIBERS is a small, family-owned yarn company specializing in 100% Tibetan Yak Down yarns and blends. When we first met the owners of Reywa at TNNA in 2018, we clicked with them immediately. They're a passionate couple who had been doing ministry in Tibet when they fell in love with the country's people. In Tibetan, "reywa" means "hope", and the desire to be a catalyst for hope is what drives Reywa's company vision. We encourage you to visit their website to read the full story. And please don't wait to try Yak down! It's as soft as cashmere, warmer than merino, naturally hypo-allergenic, and doesn't pill or felt. You won't be disappointed.
TERESA RUCH wowed us at Stitches West 2018 with her vibrant, hand-painted, hand-dyed yarns. Teresa’s passion for color is self-evident. She likes color on color, pattern on color, and the subtle sheen of fibers like bamboo and tencel. She enjoys creating a certain drape in her fabrics to get special effects that are not often found in commercial fabrics. She uses this drape to create garments that are a delight to wear. An added benefit is using fibers from plants that grow in poor soil conditions, give back to the soil they come from, and do not use much water in the processing of the fiber, making them environmentally friendly. We’re simply in love with Teresa's Tencel 5/2, with it’s saturated colors. Try weaving it into a scarf on a rigid heddle loom or using it to knit a lacy shawl; we promise you won't be disappointed!
TRENDSETTERS YARN GROUP is located here in Southern California. Back in 1988, Myrna Klein and her son Barry had a vision to create and distribute yarns for knitters, crocheters, and weavers with a focus on setting trends through innovative patterns, creative design features, and inspirational fibers. Today, Barry continues to run the business with his extended fiber family, some of whom have been working with him for 20+ years. Barry is also a knitter who loves to design and often teaches classes, including on cruises, which are his favorite! We can’t thank Trendsetters—especially Anita, our rep—enough for helping us from the very beginning. When Izzy Knits was just starting out, Anita and the staff welcomed us into the warehouse, let us wander through the aisles, answered our hundred questions, and filled our first order as we waited. Thank you, Trendsetters Yarn Group.
TWENTY STITCHES began as a collaboration between two friends to offer quick, creative and complete projects. Designed with simplicity in mind, Twenty Stitches line of unique embroidered notecards, tags, giftboxes and book arts samplers include everything you need to transform everyday items into a gift worthy presentation. When we saw Twenty Stitches' innovative DIY kits at Stitches West 2018, we thought…what lovelier way to complete a gift that you've spent hours hand-knitting, crocheting, or weaving than with an equally thoughtful, hand-embroidered note or gift tag?!
URTH YARNS is a family owned yarn company specializing in hand dyed natural yarns. Developing and employing innovative dyeing techniques, Urth aims for a love at first sight or touch, every time. Yarns are dyed and prepared by the skilled hands of women at Urth's studios in Mersin and Istanbul, Turkey. We love Urth, not only for it's terrific yarn, but for its commitment to giving back. Every skein of Urth Yarns plants a tree. By purchasing Urth yarns, you're join them in helping Trees for the Future (Urth's chosen charity partner) to provide families with tools and knowledge to plant trees in Africa.
ZEN YARN GARDEN'S dye studio is based in Ontario, Canada and run by full time husband and wife team Roxanne and Neville Yeun. These indie dyers pride themselves in providing the most luxurious fibers available in a range of beautiful semi-solid and one-of-a-kind colorways. Because they know that every hank you buy is destined to spend hours in your stash and on your needles before it becomes a hand-crafted gem that you will wear proudly, they strive to infuse every skein with the same passion that you have for your projects and craft. Susan was particularly drawn to Zen Yarn Garden’s exclusive “Art Walk Series” of our yarns. Having spent four years studying art history at Williams College, MA, she loved the idea that some of Zen’s exquisite colorways were based on her favorite works of art, including Chagall’s David à la Harpe from Chagall’s Bible Series.