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Monday, 26 December 2011

SALE on selected garments and accessories with up to 50% off- plus FREE UK mainland postage on all deliveries until 31st January 2012

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year from all at Toft- we hope you had a good one.

To celebrate the beginning of 2012 we are offering FREE* delivery on all parcels from 9am Boxing Day until 2pm 31st January.

The SALE also continues online with great savings on garments and lots of accessories.

*on all standard delivery UK mainland parcels





Friday, 23 December 2011

Christmas Holidays & Yuletide Greetings!

As you may have guessed from our last post, we were feeling fully festive as of last weekend and the Toft Christmas Decoration Workshop, so today, on Christmas Eve Eve, that feeling has more than tripled! 

On Wednesday Carrie braved Coventry went along to the Christmas party at BBC Radio Coventry and Warwickshire's Afternoon Show with Vic Minnett and a whole host of her lovely (if slightly random) guests who have featured on the show throughout the 2011.  Vic's red reindeer jumper was a treat for the eyes (!) so much so that it was all too much for her to resist a beautifully homebaked gingerbread cupcake, so she didn't, it went down very nicely with a good cuppa.  She even had a quick chat with Vic about the completed Knitivity, the characters of which stood proudly in a specially commissioned stable. 

Yesterday was Christmas lunch day at Toft towers and what a feast it was!!  All thanks to Shirley who made a delicious meal for us all complete with crackers and cranberry sauce, plus black forest gateau for pudding - yum!

So today is the last, last minute shopping day in the shop.  Until 4pm this afternoon we'll be serving those who live life on the edge with their Christmas shopping and we have a lot to offer, so pop in and we'll fix all those present emergencies.  After today however the on farm shop will be closed and we'll see you again on 3rd January 2012 - you can of course order online and we will aim to get your parcels out just as soon as we can in the midst of all those bank holidays!

We wish you a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

Sunday, 18 December 2011

Fully festive

The tree is up, the lights and music are on (much to Kerry's dismay) and we all feel that we've already had a few too many mince pies, but what really starts Christmas at Toft? A felt bauble Workshop of course and what a great time we had at said workshop yesterday. Shirley treated us all to one of her walks and the chilly sunny views were to die for.

Once back at the farm the knitting and of baubles, hearts & candy canes commenced, ready to be felted during lunch. Everyone was very creative with their needle felting. We had spots, stripes, stars & hearts adorning the fluffy alpaca decs, great effort ladies!!!

Tuesday, 6 December 2011

We may be busy but we can always find time for a Knitivity!!

When approached back in late October by The Afternoon Show on BBC Cov and Warwick Radio about a potential 'Knitivity' we may have thought we were busy- we were wrong.

Since then we have been posting hundreds of kilos of our alpaca yarn out across the UK (and global) and now the Christmas grip has really taken hold there's no stopping us. Despite a ram packed work schedule including three shows in November- we managed to get on with our task of creating the animals for the charity Knitivity. Due to our range of natural colours we seemed perfect donors for the four-legged attendees of the cattle shed. Using only our finest dk yarn and of course alpaca fleece stuffing we set to task knitting up the animals. It was very much a joint effort- non of us having ever knitted toys of any form before. I think it was a bit of an eye opener how long these things take to sew up- and how much difference a wonky eye can make!

The weeks continue and the giant to do list gets longer- so we outsource to many hands including Shirley (Toft Alpaca Stud) to turn her hands to knitting for the first time in thirty years.

Then Carrie went back onto the radio last week to boast of our progress- and she couldn't help but take up the challenge to teach a total newbie to knit the baby Jesus! So on piles the pressure...Toft is now providing more than the brown extras...the main man! Following a great afternoon masterclass in knitting the tiny oatmeal baby took shape. I think it nay well be the first time an alpaca Jesus complete with fudge hair, steel eyes and a chestnut smile has existed- I may well be wrong, but putting it out there.

Carrie will be back on-air this Thursday at 2pm to discuss the process of knitting up this fun project. The full Knitivity will be auctioned off for Charity later this month (we'll keep you posted). We hope to help raise some money with the softest Knitivity yet made!

So thanks to the help of many a knitter we have finished with our three sheep, a donkey and the ox (that's the bog brown thing!), and of course the man himself.

It's hard to lock the Christmas spirit out!

Tuesday, 29 November 2011

A new shoot with a few Toft classics.

The frost is heavy here this morning and we've got our hats and gloves on.

The Aran cable headband is perfect for bad hair/chilly windy days. Knit it yourself in a couple of hours for £14.

Our cable wristwarmers are a must have- in several colours to match all coats. £34 or knit for £16.

Team with a beginner snood or cowl knitting kit. East peasy and finished in hours. A great gift for getting someone you know out of Primark and into knitting. From £21.

Our cable and lace scarf is a gorgeous chunky number with the warmth of ten alpacas snuggling into you. A gorgeous gift to knit for someone special (aka yourself!) £61.

This striped jumper has been a hot this autumn. Shown here in mushroom and stone. Knit from £51.

And for the boys...

Sam wears a charcoal beginner cowl ( knit for £21) and some ready to wear fingerless gloves £29.

Get you needles out with these quickie projects (or you can get ready to wear if time is not on your side).

Monday, 28 November 2011

100 parcels!!

We broke a Toft record today, we sent out 100 parcels!  It was a hugely busy week on the website and what with Carrie & Kerry's Harrogate adventures with Laura, Lisbee and Katie it all added up to a manic Monday. Markie Mark the postman with the most-man nearly fell over with the shock but here he is looking very pleased with himself.

So excited were we all by this Toft record that even the doggies got their dickie bows on in celebration.  Don't they look a picture! 

Kerry is heading to Bluewater tomorrow for the last show of 2011 - yipee!!  Catch her at this show in Kent for new alpaca socks and some gorgeous knitwear to warm up your Christmas.

Thursday, 17 November 2011

A lovely autumn day at Toft

This week feels quiet, despite tonnes of orders and knitting queries, features in lots of places (check out today's Metro and Vogue's online gift guide), a photo shoot in London, a delivery of several hundred new scarves and the sample sale still continuing.  Perhaps it is the quiet before the Harrogate storm?!  We can't wait!

Kerry is out on a photo today so look out for lots of new 'urban' style photos on the website soon.  Back at the farm the weather is beautiful and Carrie has some office assistance in the guise of Sharan our new intern who will be with us for 5 weeks.  She's doing a stirling job labelling all the new stock ready for Harrogate and has been enjoying some lunches in the autumn sunshine plus lots of dog snuggles from Pete & Ace.  She just needs to convince her Mum that getting a Pete or a Harvey is a brilliant idea, we'll keep you posted.

Oh and BIG news - Toft Alpaca Shop will be featured in the Life section of this Sunday's Telegraph, a little birdie tells us we might even have the cover!  Exciting stuff!!

Saturday, 12 November 2011

Roof's arrived!

After another exceptionally busy week at Toft Towers a very exciting thing happened this Friday. The roof of our new building started to go up! We're sure that Rob would have a suitable poetic observation about this event, but being as we are so overcome with excitement that it might just be finished within a few months you'll just have to settle for a few pics, including a beautiful double rainbow from a few weeks ago instead.

In other news, Kerry has nearly sold out of pattern books & lots of yarn colours at a packed Dublin K&S show (no fear we can ship any orders!). Carrie's felt advent workshop was a huge success and everyone left with about 3 perfectly formed felt booties (just another 22 to go ladies!).

We're now looking forward to a short hiatus, then it's Harrogate here we come!

We're getting a roof!

Another exceptionally busy week at Toft Towers has seen Kerry & Carrie return from NEC & Olympia, Kerry head off to Dublin on the slow boat -

Monday, 7 November 2011

Boy have we been busy! Here's what you missed...

Since we last checked in we've been putting it about a bit.  Following a great week north of the border we headed straight down to London to Spirit of Christmas at Olympia.  We had a great week trading and are now urgently knitting up replacement stock as many lines sold out!  Meanwhile we also had a team at the NEC Hobbycraft show in Birmingham where we also caused quite a fuss and sold dozens of pattern books and tonnes of yarn.

We are now preparing to head over the Irish Sea to the RDS Dublin where we will be at the Knitting and Stitching Show from Thursday through to Sunday.

And PS... we have been in all these magazines this month (plus check us out in this photo montage from The Observer !!)

Tuesday, 25 October 2011

Fancy getting creative with Toft Alpaca Shop?

October, November and December are extremely busy times for us here at Toft Alpaca Shop.  We love the build up to the big C word although it often means seeing the inside of numerous hotel rooms as we travel the length and bredth of the country with our alpaca yarn, knitting kits, knitting patterns and alpaca knitwear.

Not only does the Toft UK tour ramp up at this time of year but so do the craft workshops and this year they are not only held here at Toft Manor in the West Midlands! 

For those in the south of the country we are visiting The Vyne in Basingstoke, Hampshire on Friday 17th November for two mini versions of our felt decorations workshop when we'll make one bauble together and you'll take home a kit to make two more.  The Vyne is always a beautiful location and even more so at Christmas when it brims over with festiveness! Visit the National Trust website for more details and to book your place on either the morning or afternoon knitting and felting sessions held by the open log fire - lush!

Whilst at the farm in the coming months we have the following courses to look foward to:

Thursday, 20 October 2011

Date for your Diary: 1st November Toft sample SALE with up to 70% off RRP on one-off knitwear!


It’s that time of year again when we open up our doors to our sample sale. This year it’s going to be a corker of an event as we have hundreds of samples due to the pattern book and our new range of dresses.

There will be everything from handbags and cardigans through to socks and slippers this year.

Doors open at 10am on 1st November 2011 at

Toft Manor




CV22 6NR

Here’s just a  taster of one of the cardigans to whet your appetite… Prices will start from £10!

Monday, 17 October 2011

Just a normal Monday at Toft

Just a normal Monday, dress the snooker room with weird and wonderful alpaca
knitwear related items for a Sunday Telegraph photo shoot including Kerry's
cardboard and alpaca yarn moose head. The very talented John Lawrence
visited Toft mid-morning and he and Kerry spent several hours talking
alpaca, taking some great shots of Kerry in situ, in our workshop space and
the hay barn. Pete took it all in his stride though, chilling out on
Carrie's chair. It's been super windy and chilly here today - a sure sign that winter is on
its way and the knitting needles need to start clicking in earnest to
complete all those jumpers and projects to knit from Toft Book 1!

Monday, 10 October 2011

A big success at Ally Pally with our first book!

You were fighting over our new book at Ally Pally this year. As ever we sold out of several of our yarns and pom poms and buttons were flying off the shelves. We re-homed nearly 100 of our small Teds- including one to Marina (and the Diamonds) as a tour buddy.

Lisbee was spotted by a couple of fans- we think there may well be a correlation between knitters and fans of our Lisbee Stainton as she was spotted last year in Harrogate too.

An awesome weekend was had by all- thanks to all our amazing staff for all their enthusiasm and hard work- and it was great to meet all our fans again.

Monday, 26 September 2011

A catch up on the pattern book: revealing pattern #10, #11 and #12

We’re nuts on legwarmers up here at Toft- here’s another pair designed to match our snood (as previewed last week).  In the double knit using stocking st and reverse st st coloured stripes to make lovely structure. 

Our simple aran headband is a gorgeous chunky cable- just one ball of our aran for this one.

And… the chunky moss snood- our easiest pattern in the book, and great for total beginners doing their first ever cast on. 

Sunday, 25 September 2011

Harvest time. Malvern Autumn show big veg selection.

Not sure much needs to be said about the following photos. Prize winning vegetables.

It's all go now as we gear up to Ally Pally.