Friday, November 27, 2015

Color Friday

Here I sit contemplating my day over a mug of coffee while my husband prepares to go to work.  It's "Black Friday" - I really hate black friday. Why, you ask? Because I don't like the crowds and pressure. For me the holidays are about getting away from the crowds and pressure. They're about taking in the season, enjoying the sights and smells and sounds, about pulling back from it all and appreciating what you have, not what you want. The very thought of having to leave my house for as much as a trip to the grocery for aspirin brings me out in a sweat. I used to love shopping for friends and family, but over the years the crowds and pressure have just gotten to be too much for me. I've already (it's 6am) heard multiple sirens off in the distance, presumably rescuing an auto accident victim or headed out to control a retail issue, it doesn't matter; I don't want to get in the way.

And so, I plan my day.  I think today I'll dye.

What a fantastic opportunity to enjoy the season. I'll turn on some holiday music, nibble some cookies... wait - what cookies?  Okay... try again. I'll turn on some holiday music, make a couple batches of cookies to nibble on, and let the sounds and smells of the season inspire me to create some new colorways.  I'll dance, play with the dogs, get a little knitting in between dye batches, maybe do some reading/catch up on blogs. My husband reads my blogs over my shoulder and just reminded me that a glass of wine could be on my list. I can make that happen too. Whole thing sounds like a great plan.

And so, I'm off to create "Color Friday".  How do you spend your holidays?

Sunday, November 22, 2015

Creating Time

The older I get, the faster the years seem to pass me by. This year certainly went quickly, but looking back on it, I think I filled it up pretty well.

2015 saw the launch of my indie-yarn line Dye Monkey Yarns, which has been a tremendous amount of fun.  I've loved developing new colorways . I've also loved developing new patterns specifically for those yarns, and had the pleasure of releasing my Signature Series Kits - pattern/yarn combos for purchase.

2015 also saw a continuation of my pattern design work. I released new patterns for two cowls, three shawls and a hat - whether as individual patterns or as part of a kit.  I have patterns for a hat and a shawl still in the tech edit process waiting for release, yet another shawl being test knit, and so many ideas for more patterns my head explodes for the possibilities! I'm so in love with the develop and design process. I wish I could dedicate more time to it.

And that is the big thing... finding more time to dedicate to what I love. I think we all struggle with that. Don't get me wrong - I don't hate my day job. In fact I really enjoy my "real job" and gain a sense of fulfillment out of it, but it does take a significant amount of time from all the other things I love - my home & family, dyeing, knitting, reading, writing, cooking...

This year, as a gift to myself, my husband and I will be renovating my studio. I talk about wanting more time to do the things I love, and sometimes the best way to make time is to remove the things that slow us down.  Right now, my studio slows me down, mentally, emotionally, even physically.

This renovation will be refining and refreshing. We'll be taking out the scruffy old, stained carpet that depresses and embarrasses me and putting in a floating vinyl "wood" floor.  We're going to paint the walls in colors I love, remove the panel doors from the closets that are always open anyway, and add a bookshelf to consolidate all the knitting and dyeing books into one area. (I currently have books tucked into six widespread locations throughout the house!) The project will be generally updating the space to provide me an organized, friendly work space.

We've got a week off from our jobs to make this happen, and although I know it's going to be a lot of work, I'm looking forward to it. Not only will I get a new workspace, I'll get a week at home, working with my husband to improve our space, an activity we really enjoy. I'm betting I can work some dyeing, knitting, reading, writing and cooking in to that week too. ;)

Sunday, November 8, 2015

Signature Series Kit 3: Peaks & Pints Hat Kit

Kit includes 1 skein of Salsa Monkey in your choice of color "Bittersweet" or "Casual Fridays", ravelry/digital delivered copy of Peaks & Pints Hat pattern (written & charted), and your choice of coordinating fabric project bin courtesy of Harbor House Baskets - retail price for items individually is $28.00 - KIT PRICE $25.00 + S&H

International Shipping is available.

Salsa Monkey Worsted Weight Yarn: 100% Superwash Merino 100g/218 yards 
This yarn is soft, durable and felt-able. Perfect for just about anything - this one is a straight up work horse with pleasurable hand.

“Casual Fridays” is a denim blue, reminiscent of the kind of denim jeans you can get away with at work on Fridays - new, no holes, but still obviously a comfortable denim jean. This yarn is kettle dyed and features tonal variations.

“Bittersweet” is a golden brown, reminiscent of bittersweet dark chocolate with very subtle creamy golden undertones. This is NOT milk chocolate or even “brown” per se - this is coffee/mocha/cocoa.. This yarn is kettle dyed and features tonal variations.

“Carved perfect turns in fresh powder with friends all day, and now you’re recapping the thrills and trying not to spill your pint at the local microbrewery. Yeah, you took a wicked header and they all laughed, but you’re laughing last… they’re buying and you’re looking cool in this hat.”

Unisex – Will fit head 20-25”

Kit quantities are limited. Yarn and pattern will not be available for purchase again until March 2016.

Sunday, November 1, 2015

First Frost Lace Weight Yarn Club

First Frost Lace Weight Yarn Club is a 3 month club with shipments starting in December 2015.

The club features two levels:

Level One: Receive 1 skein/colorway per month for 3 months US: $99 / CANADA: $114

Level Two: Receive 2 skeins/colorways per month for 3 months US: $192.75 / CANADA $208.50

Payment arrangements can be made, or you may make a single payment.

Level One: Three Payments of $33 (US) / $38 (CANADA) 
Level Two: Three Payments of $64.25 (US) / $69.50 (CANADA)

Club members will have the option of purchasing additional skeins of their favorite colorways to add to their club. 
US: $31.25/skein CANADA $31.50/skein

  • You will pick the colorways you wish to receive.
  • ALL prices include shipping.
  • You are welcome to order a club membership as a gift.
  • You may choose invoicing via PayPal or Private Listing via Etsy.
  • Shipments will begin December 5th, and subsequent packages will go out the first week of January and February.
  • The club is open to US and Canada only.
  • Colorways will not be available to purchase outside of the club until May 2016.

Colorways (left to right): Smoked Plum, Shale, Sterling, Mulled Wine, Chocolate, Midnight

These colorways were designed as a cohesive collection. Each colorway will work in conjunction with every other colorway for beautiful two-color projects.

Skeins shown above have been re-skeined to exemplify their tonal qualities. You will receive your skeins as they come out of the dyepot.

Yarn: Waltz Monkey ~ 80% Superfine Merino/20% Silk 100g/875 yards 
Airy and elegant with a light sheen. Blocks beautifully.