Thursday, October 23, 2014

Favors: Introducing Corcoa & a (big) Manos Giveaway!

Hi, Knitters,
Do you remember the Pair and a Spare mitten story from a few weeks ago? You can click here to read all about it. Basically, my son who is in the business school at the UW-Madison was in a group that had to come up with a small business plan and they picked knitwear accessories as the product. Knitwear is near and dear to the hearts of all UW-Madison students who have to walk miles and miles in the bitter cold for month after month. My son consulted with me for ideas and we came up with the Pair and a Spare mitten idea. The group loved it and used it as the basis for a mock small business plan. 

Now jump forward a few weeks. My son had to come up with a small business that actually sells the goods. It is part of the small business class curriculum. He racked his brain and searched high and low for simple yet useful ideas. The product had to be something he could produce himself. I am a bit of an idea machine so he talked to me a lot during his quest to find a product to sell that he could make himself. I thought of so many ideas (a ton) but nothing really stuck until we started discussing Mason Ball Jars.

My son and I both have a love of Mason Ball Jars. He made a wall hanging using Mason Ball Jars last summer as a matter of fact. I have a bit of a collection of these jars so we started talking about things you could make with them. The list went on and on. Finally he focused on the lids which you can purchase separately. We thought about how you could flip them upside-down and use them as coasters. But the inside needs to be lined with something water-resistant and to provide a bit of a cushion for your glass. Cork seemed the perfect fit. Cork coasters are pretty commonplace already and with good reason. Plus the lids are smooth on the bottom so they won't scratch table surfaces. 

Then he started thinking about themes and printing on the cork with permanent ink to stylize the coaster sets. The coasters just needed a little more character. When he brought home a set for me to check out I couldn't believe how terrific the simple lids and cork had become! These are wonderful, inexpensive and just cute. I want a set of each!

I actually was worried about the ink running so I tested it out. I filled one of the lids with standing water and let it sit for a long time. There was no running of ink. After it was good and wet I even tried my best to smudge the ink by rubbing on it quite hard while it was wet and it did not smear at all. 

Yesterday my son launched his website to start selling his Mason Ball Jar lid coasters called......

Corcoa! Get it? Cork + Coaster = Corcoa 

My son pronounces it Corco-ah. I pronounce it Corco. Either one is fine.

The coasters are made from the Wide Mouth Mason Ball Jar lids if you are wondering about size.

Of course I asked him to make a set with knitters in mind (or really a set just for me). He obliged and this became the Knitting Coaster Set. He came up with three other themed sets: Northwoods, Birds and Winter. All of these things ring true to our hearts here in Wisconsin. I love his theme choices.

Here are the choices:

The price is only $10 for a set of 4 original Corcoa Coasters! My son has the prefect packaging all set to go. He has to sell as many as possible for his class project (and grade!). 

I am wondering if any of you would like a Madison-crafted set of four Corcoa Coasters for your home, office, cottage, patio, or anywhere? They are really sweet and kind of old-fashioned and farmhouse-like. I love them and will buy many sets for gifts and for our home. Look out Christmas because everyone I know is getting a Corcoa Coaster set under the tree this year.

These would also make perfect teacher, mail carrier, caretaker, neighbor, or anyone needing a little sign of your appreciation- type gift. The price-point for a gift is right on the mark.

I have had so much fun working on this project with my oldest in his final semester at the UW-Madison. He did all of the work I just talked it through with him. He is a really fun, sincere and kind kid (he's the one engaged to the lovely Miss Molly). 

Please check out the beautiful website my son created for Corcoa (click here!). I don't usually ask for favors but for my son I will and plus the coasters are truly wonderful. If you feel up to purchasing a set I would be forever grateful. If not that's okay, too! No worries at all, I will continue to love you either way!

Thank you for considering and reading.

Now on to some yarny goodness and giveaway fun!

I received a very sweet email from one of my blog readers named Helen. I have heard from Helen off and on for awhile now. She writes a good email. This time Helen asked a favor of me. She recently moved to a much smaller space. The new space could not hold all of the stash she had collected through the years plus Helen's health hasn't been quite up to par lately and her knitting has slowed down a bit. 

Helen asked if she could send me some of her stash and help her find a good home for it. I quickly responded that I would be happy to help. I happen to know a few knitters who would love to help as well! So last week I received a box of yarn from Helen. I am sorting through it and giving yarn to people who will love it as much as Helen did.

Today I would like to share a little of Helen's stash with one lucky knitter. See that beautiful squishy Manos yarn in the photo above? That entire lot is for one of you.

Here are the yarn details for the giveaway. The winner will receive:

9 full and new skeins of Manos del Uruguay Silk Blend (30% Silk, 70% Merino Extrafine Wool, kettle dyed), 50 grams per skein; 150 yards per skein

1350 yards total ~ a sweater's worth of Manos Silk Blend!

Color # 3110 (rich brown, gold, blue, purple, and green) It's gorgeous beyond description!

Gauge: 22-24 stitches per 4-inches 

Recommended needle size: US size 4-6 needles

Handwash/Dry flat

All of this for you! The yarn is worth about $115 and it is in absolutely perfect condition. It smells wonderful and there is no wear and tear at all. I will vouch for this. It is in stellar condition.

Thank you Helen for spreading the knitting joy! I appreciate you so much. 

Please leave a comment on this blog post that includes your email address or Ravelry username or ID. Please leave only one comment. There will be a delay until your comment will appear because I approve posting all comments to prevent spam. Please be patient and don't keep clicking on the post button. This causes multiple entries. I will randomly select a winner in a few days.

Due to the fact that I get quite a few people emailing me to enter the giveaways I am going to go through the steps of posting a comment for you if you don't know how. If you email me it won't enter you in the giveaway. I hope these steps will help so everyone who wants to enter can enter!

1. Go to the actual blog at If you are getting an email version through subscription click on Susan B. Anderson and it will take you right to the blog.

2. Scroll down to the bottom of the post and click on "comments." This will take you the place where you can read the comments and where you can leave a comment.

3. On the right-top corner of the comments page is a box. Type in your comment in the box.

4. Click on the orange box that says "Publish Your Comment." Only click once and remember that there is a delay before you will see your comment appear!

Tip: Don't click on "email follow-up comments" or you'll be getting hundreds of emails with everyone else's comment entries.

That's it! I hope that helps.

Good luck if you enter. 

Thanks friends and let the comments begin!
xo ~ susan