Family Vacation Planning? The Secret to Stress-Free Travel

Short or long, vacations require a bit of planning to help ensure that they are as enjoyable as they can be. One of the biggest hassles when traveling is trying to remember everything you need to make your trip go as smoothly as possible.  And if you are traveling with kids, the complexity just multiplied – getting from point A to point B can be a lot more challenging with little ones in tow.

Last fall, we had a great guest post on the blog about traveling with kids on a two-week vacation to Europe, and we got a great response. Building on that blog post, we’ve put together a free downloadable pdf that has all sorts of great tips and tricks for traveling with kids, as well as lots of handy checklists. The checklists also have room for you to write down your own items, because while traveling with kids has a lot of similarities, every kid is different and might need a few extra things that only you know about – like their special blanket, or an extra battery pack for the tablet that they burn out every time they play games.

You can get this amazing pdf for free right here, just by signing up for our newsletter.  And if you aren’t traveling with kids this year but know someone who is, send them the link! They will thank you for it.  After all, who wouldn’t love to have packing checklists  geared to them and their family?

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How to Pack Light When Traveling with Kids

This is a guest post from Julie Crawford, of knittedbliss.com. She recently took a trip and tried out our Getaway Gang!

How to Pack Light Traveling with Kids | Eucalan.comTraveling with small kids can strike fear into the heart of even the most stalwart of travelers, but I recently did just that –  I took a two week trip to England and Spain with my husband, 4-year-old daughter, and 9-month-old son, and we only packed two small suitcases. Spain was hot, and England was chilly – none of the clothes we wore in England were worn in Spain, and vice versa.

The secret? Packing strategically and washing things as we traveled.

Traveling with Kids & Eucalan Getaway Gang | knittedbliss.com

If you are going to do any traveling (especially with kids!), you need Eucalan’s Getaway Gang. It contains 10 packets of no-rinse wash, 6 stain treating towelettes, one emery board, and a little sewing kit for emergencies (even tiny scissors!).

Eucalan Getaway Gang

I took some of the stain treating towelettes, the emery board, and the sewing kit (minus the scissors, as airport security can be pretty strict) in my carry on. And I was glad I did, since I got chocolate milk on me in the departure lounge, before even getting on the plane:

Getaway Gang | eucalan.com

Possibly light grey pants were not the best travel outfit choice. But the stain towelette did the job, and took away the worst of the chocolate milk. All that was left (other than a damp spot, which needed to dry) was the faintest mark, hardly visible during the rest of the journey. Once I took them off and washed them completely, it was like it never even happened.

Short on time? Click here to download a free PDF version to read later!

Packing Your Carry On: Tips

  • Don’t just throw the pouch with all your Eucalan goodies into your checked bag! Take out at least 2 stain treating towelettes (3 if you’ve got kids with you), the emery board, and the sewing kit (if you have to leave the scissors in your checked bag, that’s okay).
  • Pack a lightweight change of clothes in your carry on not only for the kids, but for yourself – take it from my husband, who had the misfortune of being vomited on by another kid (and not one of our own, another little one who didn’t make it to the washroom in time.)
  • Pack a plastic bag for serious messes. Because even if the above hadn’t happened,  the baby had a crazy diaper situation and required a full wardrobe change mid flight.  I just bagged up the offending outfit and washed it when we got to our destination.
  • Antibacterial wipes- this is the only time I use them. When we first get to our seats, I wipe down the armrests, the trays, everything around us. Not just because the baby will inevitably end up chewing on an armrest, but because you know that they don’t ever really wipe down the surfaces of the plane between flights.

As for packing light, I only packed 4 outfits for each country for each person (except the baby – he had some extras ), which meant that me, my husband, and my 4 year old had a total of 8 outfits: 4 for cool weather, and 4 for hot weather. We also packed lightweight waterproof jackets (England was indeed rainy!).  Each outfit was chosen for it’s ability to be worn with everything else packed for that climate  – shirts had to match all the shorts that were packed, light sweaters and cool weather clothes had to be able to mix and match. This meant that you could recombine pieces for a lot of variety, even though very little was brought for each person.

In England we were staying with family, in Spain we stayed in hotels and then a rented apartment in Barcelona.  Having regular access to a washing machine makes it a lot easier to pack less, but having fewer items means that you also don’t have full loads of laundry very often, even with 4 people. Sink washing certain items just made sense, as I could do it in the morning and things would often be dry by the following morning:

Getaway Gang | eucalan.com

The baby sleepers in particular seemed to need far more frequent washing than anything else- not that surprising, as babies are pretty messy!

Getaway Gang | eucalan.com

In England, the laundry detergent they had was so harsh and really overly fragranced that I ended up rewashing the first load in Eucalan. It got out the strong perfume smell of the previous detergent. In Spain, I wasn’t about to go and buy laundry detergent, so I used Eucalan in the washing machine and everything came out perfectly:

Traveling with Kids & Eucalan Getaway Gang | eucalan.com

We are already talking about another trip again next summer- but this time if we go to different places, we will try to choose ones with a similar climate!

 

 

 

 

 

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Easy Swimwear Care

Sometimes, you just need a day at the beach (or lounging poolside). But sun, sea salt, and chlorine can wreak havoc on your swimwear if not properly cared for.

Keep your bathing suit looking its best with Eucalan.

The good news is that it’s quite easy to keep your bathing suit in tip-top condition: after every use, wash in your favourite scent of Eucalan. We show you how in this easy tutorial:

As you can see, it takes only a few minutes to remove the oils, chlorine and lotions which can break down the fibres of your swim suit and fade the colours over time. You can even wash your suit in your hotel sink while traveling with our single use pods! We recommend our LavenderGrapefruit or Jasmine scents for their naturally antiseptic properties.

Single Use Pods of Eucalan are great for travel.

Need a little reminder every now and then? Keep this graphic handy for future reference by printing, pinning, or sharing on social media:

How to wash your swimwear with Eucalan.

Now you can have fun in the sun all summer long!

Jen’s Top 10: London Calling

Our CEO Jennifer Edgar will be sharing some of her favourite things in this new blog series. From travel to style and everything in between, nothing is off limits! Jen’s recent trip to London is the inspiration for her first-ever post. Hint: you can click each image below to view a larger size. Enjoy! 

It was a perfect May to take 2 weeks holiday to visit the UK.  The purpose for this holiday?  To celebrate my mum’s 70th birthday and her return to her birthplace for the first time since immigrating to Canada when she was 12.  Although this is a top 10 list of wonderful things I experienced on the trip, the highlight was most definitely watching my mum walk the same steps she took as a child and visit her old homes and to have some time to reminisce with her dear cousin.

Of course, I took my Eucalan with me!  It was so easy to toss a Getaway Gang into my suitcase while packing; in particular, the Wipes saved more than a few outfits throughout our journey! 

1.Harry Potter: The WB Studio Tour was tops on the list.  As a fan of the movies and having a 10 year old daughter who reads the books over and over, this was not to be missed.  I took nearly 400 photos on this excursion alone!  Thank goodness for expandable memory in my phone!

Great Hall

Great Hall

Gringott's Vault Door

Gringott’s Vault Door

Dumbledore's Office

Dumbledore’s Office

Ollivanders

Ollivanders

White Card Model

White Card Model

2. Location: Our hotel was in the heart of Trafalgar Square – we really didn’t realize where we were until we stepped out and walked a short distance.  This is the ideal location for tourists!  Nearly everything we wanted to see was within a 10 minute radius of our hotel.  The underground was a 2 minute walk from our door.  How perfect!

Hotel Wall Map

Hotel Wall Map

Trafalgar Square

Trafalgar Square

3. Shopping: Any good list should include a little retail therapy, shouldn’t it? My new favourite spot is Fortnum and Mason in Piccadilly. It really is a sight to behold. Everything from the window displays to men in tailcoats and fancy boxes of chocolates had me oohing and aahing.  I managed to find a few lovely tea towels and now have to decide which ones I will part with as gifts for some of my favourite people.

Entrance

Entrance

Inside

Inside

Tea Truck

Tea Truck

Champagne & Chocolate Hamper

Champagne & Chocolate Hamper

4. Food & Drink: Fish and Chips.  Need I say more???  I didn’t eat it as much as I thought I would, but I had my fill.  Along with that was, as expected, the best scones and clotted cream.  The most delicious Earl Grey tea is even better when served in fine china.  There were no shortages of excellent establishments near our hotel but it was a real treat to eat next-door at The Sherlock Holmes pub.  Just behind that was The Ship and Shovell, a most unusual pub split on two sides of the street.  It’s astonishing how busy these pubs were every day after work.  

Pub Sign

Pub Sign

Scone & Clotted Cream

Scone & Clotted Cream

The Sherlock Holmes

The Sherlock Holmes

Traditional Sunday Dinner

Traditional Sunday Dinner

5. Architecture: The buildings are amazing.  It’s hard to take it all in, there’s so much!  It stands to reason that one could take a trip and just focus on architecture and history of the buildings.  Plenty show signs of the war.  We saw many building being rebuilt while the façade was held in place.  Westminster Abbey is one of the greatest.  No photography is allowed inside so I’ll live with my memories.  It truly must be seen to be believed.

Big Ben

Big Ben

Bridge & Buses

Bridge & Buses

Empire Theatre Hackney

Empire Theatre Hackney

Westminster Abbey

Westminster Abbey

6. History: One specific highlight for me was visiting the Churchill War Rooms.  What I expected to be a small space and museum is remarkably large.  It’s like a time capsule.  We spent at least 2 hours here and I could have easily stayed another 1 or 2 longer!

Entrance

Entrance

Noiseless Typewriter

Noiseless Typewriter

Number 10

Number 10

Signs

Signs

7. Soho: We had an enjoyable visit to a friend’s workplace in Soho Square.  Not only did we receive a tour of her office but we walked around the streets and saw plenty of half-timbered buildings and then nicely found ourselves inside the most beautiful Liberty.  It was a feast for the eyes with beautiful displays and matching everything!  Carnaby Street was fun and energy in this part of the city was so electric.

Half-timbered Buildings

Half-timbered Buildings

Liberty Floral Entrance

Liberty Floral Entrance

 

Liberty Levels

Liberty Levels

Display

Display

Haberdashery

Haberdashery

Merchant & Mills

Merchant & Mills

Measures

Measures

Rowan Yarns

Rowan Yarns

Carnaby Street

Carnaby Street

8. Royalty: We all dream of seeing royalty, don’t we? On our first day of the trip we went down the wrong street from the roundabout in Trafalgar Square.  This was before we had our bearings.   In only a few steps we looked up and saw…Buckingham Palace at the end of…The Mall.  It was down quite a ways but this was such an exciting “turn” that we stopped to enjoy the fact that we were on The Mall.  All of a sudden a motorcade zipped by with Prince William in the back seat!  We then learned that the Queen would be opening Parliament which is one of the most important days of the parliamentary year.  Although it would have been easier to see on tv, we lined up with the other spectators for a glimpse of the Queen in her carriage.  The formality of it all was something to see!  On another day we made our way to the Royal Mews at Buckingham Palace and learned about the daily lives of those living there and caring for the horses.  The carriages are remarkable.  

The Mall

The Mall

Walkway

Walkway

Horses

Horses

Live Music

Live Music

Gold State Coach

Gold State Coach

Gold State Coach Detail

Gold State Coach Detail

9. Transportation: The underground is a real marvel.  The UK has double the population of Canada, yet people move about in such a seamless manner.  The tube is efficient and clean.  We used it during quieter times as well as rush hour.  There’s no time to dawdle and take pictures at rush hour!  The bus system is rather evident.  The double deckers are everywhere and well routed. We never needed to take a taxi since we managed so well with the tube and buses.  Parking is interesting.  We didn’t actually see anyone get into their space or leave so I don’t know how they actually managed it.  

Bus, Bikes, Cars, & Horses

Bus, Bikes, Cars, & Horses

Parking

Parking

Underground

Underground

10. The Tower of London:This was the final stop on our holiday.  As our Yeoman Warder guide told us, we would learn about all sorts of “bloody deeds”. Not only did we hear fantastic stories but we saw the crown jewels and walked through the White Tower.  It’s a place where you can just imagine stepping back in time.  There is so much to take in here and it’s worth more than one visit.  

Yeoman Warder

Yeoman Warder

Guard

Guard

Steps

Steps

White Tower

White Tower

Panorama

Panorama

So there you have it, my personal favourite 10 things to see or do in London.  We packed a lot into this trip and it was well worth the tired aching feet and jet lag.  It’s so great to be home again but I wonder what new places I’ll discover on my next trip there!

 

Sustainable Tourism & Eucalan

Sustainable tourism is an emerging trend in the world of travel: destinations which support the local economy and preserve the pristine environment can be enjoyed in a number of ways, from backpacking trips to eco resorts. Many of these destinations have specific instructions for what types of personal care products are allowed – for instance, Mexico has restrictions on certain sunscreens which are commonly used in the rest of North America. These measures are aimed at keeping the water supply and surrounding environment pure & clean.

Maya Bay, Thailand

Maya Bay, Thailand

Our biodegradable formula meets the European Union’s strict guidelines for detergents, which means that Eucalan will not negatively impact the environment anywhere in the world. That’s great news for travelers, especially since washing lingerie and bathing suits in between uses is recommended to extend the life of the piece. Packing a Getaway Gang or a few Eucalan single-use pods will safely clean your clothes, wherever your travels take you.

Different scenarios require different clothing, but you’re limited by the size of your suitcase. The little extras you put in your checked bag can make the difference between wearing the same pair of jeans for days or being able to pack a few more wardrobe options for any occasion which may come up. While our single use pods and 100mL bottles are the perfect size for carry-on luggage for a weekend getaway, a longer trip will require a little more planning to quickly and easily keep all of the items in your carefully-packed wardrobe ready to wear.

Eucalan Single Use Pods - Great for a Quick Getaway

Eucalan Single Use Pods – Great for a Quick Getaway

Your best bet is to check your luggage, which allows you a lot more leeway when it comes to liquids you can take on your voyage. Our Getaway Gang is a portable pack of garment care essentials that you can easily slip into your suitcase. Inside the clear vinyl zip bag, you will find ten single-use packs of Eucalan’s signature no-rinse delicate garment wash (two each in the five scents of lavender, grapefruit, eucalyptus, jasmine and unscented) along with exclusive handy products that you can tuck into your purse or pocket: a sewing kit, a nail file, and 6 Stain Treating Towelettes. Carrying one with you while you’re on the go is like having an insurance policy for your clothes–you can deal with that spot or spill immediately after it happens.

Don’t make the mistake of thinking that Eucalan wash is only for delicates! It will freshen anything in your travel wardrobe that can be immersed in water and allowed to dry – as we already mentioned, Eucalan is great for rinsing out your bathing suit after each use to keep the colors vibrant. We have even more easy-care washing tips for quick reference here on our website or here on our YouTube channel.

The Eucalan Getaway Gang

You will be ready for whatever adventure  (or wardrobe emergency) your journey brings thanks to Eucalan and the Getaway Gang!

Click here for your chance to win a Getaway Gang of your own! You’ll just need to sign up for our newsletter by entering your email address on the signup form. If you already subscribe, simply enter your email address for us to confirm (don’t worry, you won’t receive duplicate emails from us)!

 

Packing for a Long Weekend

Picturing yourself here?

Picturing yourself here?

As winter sets in, do you find yourself longing for warm weather and planning a tropical getaway? Are you pondering a trip to a craft event like the Original Sewing and Quilt Expo, Vogue Knitting Live or Interweave Bead Fest? With fees for checked bags now the industry standard for airline travel, packing for the four-day journey has become an art form. The dimensions for a carry-on bag seem to be shrinking, too, if those “does your bag fit here?” devices in the airport are any evidence. Making the most of miniscule space means not only careful wardrobe choices, but also packing versatile supplies that will keep that wardrobe fresh for the duration of your journey. Of course, going into your carry-on bag means that your cosmetics, toiletries and other essentials must meet TSA regulations, too. That’s a lot of logistical planning for what’s supposed to be a fun get-away. Here are some tips for keeping it simple:

Pick one neutral colour as a wardrobe base. Black is classic, but denim is a neutral, too. Whatever you choose, try to have at least two bottom pieces (pants, skirt) and a top piece (sweater, jacket). You might want one in a dressier fabric and one in a more casual fabric but in similar colours for easy coordination with your other pieces.

Coordinate your outfits wisely. Make sure every bottom piece goes with at least two top pieces and vice versa. Don’t you wish they made Garanimals for grown-ups? Consider a print or dark shirt as your “eatin’ shirt,” one that will disguise accidental food stains. Stephanie Pearl-McPhee, the Yarn Harlot, explained this term in a 2011 blog post about packing for a book tour (found here). She opts for brown as her basic neutral so that spilled coffee won’t show on her clothes. Of course, stains come in many colours, so keeping a few Eucalan Stain Treating Wipes handy couldn’t hurt, either.

Don’t forget to accessorize! Bring at least one colorful handmade accessory to jazz up your neutrals. A lace- or fingering-weight knitted shawl is not just a fashion statement, it’s a much more pleasant alternative to an airline blanket, too. Carefully draped, it will also cover a stain in case you spilled on something besides your designated eating shirt. Plus, it’s an easily-adjusted fix for thermostats over which you have no control. For those who don’t knit or crochet, a brightly-coloured pashmina will do the trick nicely!

Consider using space-saving bags. The zipped pouches to corral like items (socks, underthings) are good, but bags which you can roll and squeeze the air out of are even better. You don’t need access to a vacuum cleaner to use them.

Finally, be mindful of restrictions on liquids, aerosols and gels when flying; Click here to brush up on the CATSA rules and here to review TSA requirements. 

How do you fit makeup, hair products, skin and clothing care in that quart-sized bag? Only you know what you need in terms of cosmetics, but we have put together a group of travel essentials that will help you keep your weekend wardrobe fresh while meeting security requirements. Versatile and convenient, they are worth the tiny bit of space they will take in your bag.

Packing for a long weekend with Eucalan.

Pictured above, you can see three of our products that are worth keeping in your purse or packed in a carry-on bag:

Eucalan Wipes are stain-treating towelettes saturated with Eucalan. You can unfold one of these towelettes to blot or rub a spot and go on with your day –  no disrobing in the washroom trying to dry your blouse under a hand-dryer! (What? You haven’t done that?) Eucalan Wipes come only in the unscented formula so it doesn’t compete with any of your other wearable fragrances.

Wrapture Fragrant Balm is a unique multi-purpose product. The jasmine scent, Wrapture, was created in collaboration with Kristin Omdahl and matches the delicate wash scent of the same name. Made with essential oils, Wrapture Fragrant Balm can soften rough skin, tame flyaway hair and works great as a personal fragrance, too. Its semi-solid, TSA-friendly formulation is conveniently packed in a leak-proof tin, so it’s easy to tuck into your toiletries bag.

Single Use Pods are available in all five Eucalan scents (Eucalyptus, Grapefruit, Lavender, Natural and Wrapture, our Jasmine scent). Each contains just enough Eucalan to wash your delicates (or any washable fabric) in your hotel sink. Hang your underthings up in the shower to dry overnight and you’ve maximized the room in your carefully-packed carry-on bag!

Once you’ve chosen your coordinated wardrobe pieces and bagged your Eucalan travel essentials (for longer weekends, you can just toss a Getaway Gang into your checked luggage), your carry-on is ready to go and so are you! Get ready to brave that security line and go on your adventure. Your bag may even have room for your souvenirs when you’re ready to return home!

Your Dream Destination

Last fall, we were excited to announce the Berlin to Paris 2015 trip in celebration of Eucalan’s 25th anniversary. We appreciate all who showed interest in this trip; unfortunately, we had to cancel as we didn’t have enough travelers signed up for the tour.

However, there’s still plenty to look forward to for the summer travel season! Whether you’ll be taking a road trip, boarding a plane, or armchair traveling from the comfort of your own home, here are some unique destinations to inspire you to pack those bags! You can click the images or links below for more details on each spot.

Paris may be known as the city of love, but there are plenty of other romantic destinations for world travelers. Located in Romania, The Tunnel of Love is said to grant the wishes of those couples who are truly in love: all they have to do is hold hands and cross the tunnel.

tunnel-pastel__880

Prague is another romantic destination that’s filled with beautiful cathedrals and old-world charm; it’s also a relatively affordable destination with lots of quirky, offbeat attractions. For example, visitors can see a giant metronome, visit the Sedlec Ossuary (or Bone Church – yes, it has a LOT of bones on display), or they can even give absinthe a try.

pragueSpeaking of offbeat, why not visit the Spreepark, an abandoned amusement park located in what was then East Germany?

spreepark
There are plenty of places to watch the northern lights, but by far the most interesting one we’ve come across is these glass igloos in Finland!

iceigloos
The hot springs and carbonate terraces of Pamakkale,Turkey are a beautiful natural wonder to behold.

Pamukkale-Turkey_green

For fans of the Hobbit movies and the Lord of the Rings Triology, visiting the Hobbiton Movie Set on the North Island of New Zealand is a must-see!

Hobbiton Movie Set

We hope that you will find even more travel inspiration here on our Pinterest board.

 

Thanks for joining us!

25th Anniversary Knitting Trip: Berlin to Paris

We feel privileged to be celebrating our 25th year of business! Thank you for trusting Eucalan with your most treasured garments – new and vintage – and for sharing your stories with us.

Today we are thrilled to share the details of our upcoming knitting trip from “Berlin to Paris”, September 28 – October 9, 2015. Join me, Jennifer Edgar and celebrity knit and crochet designer Kristin Omdahl on this 12 day adventure.

We’ll focus on the artisan crafts, culture and cuisine that are woven through the fabric of both Germany and France from wools and wines to yarns, museums and monuments. Our tour guide is extremely knowledgeable, friendly and speaks the languages of our host countries. We’ll enjoy visits to two of our distributors – Steidl and Becker in Germany and Bergere de France in France. There will be plenty of time for knitting and learning new techniques as well as shopping!

Please join us for what is certain to be an engaging and fascinating tour. Contact Pauwels Travel Bureau at tours@pauwelstravel.com or call our office and speak with Lisa at 800-561-9731 or info@eucalan.com.  Please click on the link below for full details and application form.

Eucalan Berlin to Paris

Eucalan Title Page

Final Report: Wool, The Fabric of Life Tour of England & Scotland

Lisa Carrow, instructor at the Aurora Waldorf School, my sister-in law and daughter of the founder of Eucalan was fortunate enough to go on the Eucalan-sponsored Wool, The Fabric of Life Tour of England and Scotland.  She's shared her experiences below for those of you who are interested in reading about this once-in-a-lifetime trip.  Enjoy!

-Jennifer Edgar, Managing Director of Eucalan Delicate Wash.

Being a well-seasoned and independent traveler, bus tours aren’t usually my thing. I even surprised myself when I agreed to participate in the Eucalan-sponsored trip.  What a good decision! We had a wonderful time and I for one knit to my heart's content, found inspiration for my personal projects and teaching work, and have now made new connections with a group of talented, enthusiastic women who share my interests in fiber craft.

IMG_5701
I realized on the first day that this was going to be a successful trip. When the whole group has a main focus, even though their backgrounds, job experiences and current life situations are vastly varied, the common thread knits the group together. We were all knitters at the core with an interesting array of other skills such as tatting, weaving, spinning, drawing and painting. Everyone took a genuine interest in each other.  Comments such as “Did you knit that,” “Can I have that pattern,” and “How did you do that – could you show me how?” could be heard on a daily basis.

The bus drive from our hotel to the daily point of interest became a sanctuary where we could quietly knit by ourselves, view the spectacular scenery, listen to the highlights or historical points about the daily destination (never missing a beat or dropping a stitch!) and helping one another with a problem in their project. One day I overheard “I will not be defeated by yarn” as a project was being corrected! Everyone shared talents and expertise freely and joyfully, often in the lounge before or after dinner.  On two occasions, in Peebles and Harrogate, a group of local knitters joined us for an entertaining evening of “knit and natter.” IMG_5417

 At Yarrowford, we had the rare opportunity of meeting and talking with a leading dog runner who is headed for the World Champion Sheepdog Trials this year.  It was amazing to to see his skill and patience with his Border Collie dogs who eagerly awaited his instruction to demonstrate their ability to herd the sheep and follow his directions. We also met a local herdsman who showed us hand-shearing methods and answered our many questions.  Some of us asked for hot soapy water so we could experience the clean wool right away.

IMG_5674a

The local Women's Institute provided a wonderful hot soup lunch and delicious “tablet” – a sweet Scottish confection. I felt so happy to meet and support this community.   There was a cheer from the group when it was announced we would be able to attend the British Wool Weekend at Harrogate. This was so much fun and a great way to see such variety in one location: Wool coffins, spinning off a live angora rabbit, and knitting for breast cancer with 6 foot needles in the middle of the event.  There was traditional Guernsey knitting, yarn, yarn, and more yarn, and so much inspiration! Did you know that the British Wool Group is making a wool pillow (from British wool, of course) for every room at the Olympics, hosted there next year? I’m thrilled and inspired by this enthusiasm and to have been able to support Great Britain in my own small way by participating in the tour.  We covered a lot of territory in 12 days! 

There was a nice variety of historical locations such as Sir Walter's Scotts home, Abbottsford, Hadrian’s Wall, and the cities of Edinburgh, York, and London.  Educational and inspiring Beckside Yarnsworkshops included drop spinning and yarn dying at Heriot-Watt University, where we talked them into giving us a tour of the
classrooms and facility there – I’ve never seen so many looms or sewing machines in one room!  

One of my favorites was the felting workshop at the restored Farfield Mill with Chrissy and Lizzie.  The Intarsia knitting workshop at the one and only Rowan Yarns was a highlight for many and what an honor to meet the head designer Marie Wallin, who talked with us for an hour, sharing her work details of creating the Rowan magazines.  Knitting shops were sought out everywhere we stopped. The best ones we found tucked away in tiny communities such as Clapham, where owner Sandra opened her Beckside Yarns shop early for us and we all enjoyed yarn retail therapy.  I found it surprising that larger towns had much smaller yarn shops with quite limited variety.  At the Toft Alpaca Farm near Rugby we were treated to a delicious cream tea, informative talk, and the opportunity to buy hand-spun alpaca for knitting.  

Toft Alpaca Farm

Our bus driver, Mike, handled the large, comfortable coach with great ease through cities and around tiny country lanes, his previous experience was driving bus in London.  And Janet, our tour guide, kept us entertained with her interesting commentary as we travelled from the Border County of Scotland to London, England.  Thank you, Eucalan and DeNure Tours – where are we going next?

IMG_5918

There are many more photos from this trip!  Click here to view the rest of Lisa's photos from the tour.  Enjoy!

Does this get your attention?

After many requests from retailers over the years we've come out with our new Point Of Purchase display.  We're very proud of our newest edition and will start rolling them out to stores early this summer.  It's an attractive countertop unit and holds an assortment of our entire line of Eucalan products – including No Rinse Delicate Wash in all scents and sizes and On The Go Clothing Care which consists of our stain treating towelettes and "peel & pat" lint remover sheets.  Actually, we think it's quite pretty!  The graphics are soft and soothing and when the POP is fully stocked it looks so lovely.  We're encouraging retailers to carry the full line of Eucalan because many stores carry only certain sizes or scents – whatever is their personal favourite.  Sometimes it takes a customer to request something specific in order for the store to consider carrying anything else.  Now we'll be seeing a wider assortment available in more stores and the POP is expected to draw more attention to the product.

Recently we placed two prototypes in local stores.  Tabatha was in fine form setting up the POP's which is good since I brought along my camera!  First stop is John M. Hall in Paris, Ontario.  They're our local linen store and a big attraction for visitors to our beautiful town.  Hall's is in a great old building with creaky wooden floors and a great view of the Grand River from the back of the store.

JMH sign 

Isn't this an awesome door?!

JMH door 

Tabatha hard at work…

JMH starting 

JMH singles 

JMH finished 

Next we're off to Nina-Brie in neighbouring Brantford.  This is the place for fine ladies fashions.  Actually it's where I purchased my first Linda Lundstrom LaParka about 14 years ago!  It's a gorgeous periwinkle blue and looks like new thanks to caring for it with Eucalan.

NB sign 

There seems to be a theme here…Tabatha's hard at work and I'm…taking pictures…

NB Tab 

…and shopping…

NB clothes 

Et voila!  The finished display…

NB pop