My Birthday yarnie gifts

Hi there, I’m sorry I did not keep my word and post a second time last week. Time seems to constantly elude me these days. I hope you understand:)

I wanted to show you some of my Birthday gifts because yes it was my Birthday not so long ago. First off, my daughter the artist made me some super fun stitch markers from polymer clay.

I love using these!

And this year is the second time I organize a Birthday swap in my Knitting in France Group on Ravelry. It is a small swap which I think suits us all well as the pressure is limited and we don’t have to send gifts every month of the year. It is however super fun when it is one’s turn to receive those yarny gifts and it just so happens that I’m the last to celebrate my birthday. I’m still waiting for some to arrive but I thought I should share with you those that I have so far.

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This was the first gift I got and it arrived the morning of my Birthday! A nice sock size project bag, amazing chocolates and a Finnish specialty. A wonderfully smelling hand cream and a fun needle gauge/key ring from Succaplokki. And two skeins of yarn. The pink one is from Wollmeise and the purple one is from a new to me French dyer called Squirrel’s Yarns. I love the colors and will most likely be using them to knit into socks. The project bag also contained a gift, a hand knit shawl!

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Yes that’s me wearing my new shawl:)

The second gift arrived soon there after.

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How fun is this Truckin’ project bag? And the yarns are gorgeous! The green yarn is Harry Potter inspired from Just a Girl and her Dog Yarns. The Teal one is actually hand spun and the label says Creek Side Farm. Both are gorgeous and the Honey straws have me intrigued.

The third gift arrived this past weekend.

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I love the lamb post card. The monkeys on the right are actually magnets and now reside on my fridge. The Minion tin contains some buttons and the yellow piece you see behind the mignon is a table cloth and I think it may have been woven.

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I absolutely LOVE this tag to attach to a hand knit gift. Not sure I’ll ever be willing to part with it though. It’s now hanging on a wall next to my desk.

When I first saw this I thought this was a crochet kit but it’s actually a knitting pattern. You can knit a 3D fish and it comes with the beads and the DMC thread. Amazing. One of my daughter has already requested she keep this once it’s done.

And to finish I got this bag of beautiful teal colored silk to spin into something gorgeous. And 2 skeins of Claudia Handpainted yarns for a future pair of socks.

Amazing right?! I do love a good yarn/knitting swap and as this is birthday related it is even more fun I think. I might organize this for the third consecutive year in 2018 so if you are interested in joining do let me know. I will be asking in my Ravelry Group soon if people are interested in joining again. Actually this year I think I only have one new participant all the others joined the first time around and jumped on the chance to join in again for this second time. We’ll see if we have enough participants for a third edition.

But I did also treat myself to some yarnie goodness using my birthday as an excuse. I know I’m an adult and that I don’t need an excuse to buy yarn BUT seeing as I already have more than I need and that I’m trying to cut down on yarn purchases, I’m using the Birthday excuse anyway!

So I purchased some yarns from a destash on Ravelry. This is the first time I have ever done this and I admit I was a bit apprehensive as I did not know the seller at all. I saw a post from this person on Instagram and the yarns pictured were all gorgeous so I had to jump over to Ravelry and take a look. Well I actually ended up buying not 1, not 2, not 3 no no no! I bought 5!!! Yes that’s right I  bought 5 skeins! And they have arrived and they are all as gorgeous as they were on Ravelry.

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Both of these dyers are new to me. I had known about the Wool Barn but never seen their yarn in person and I admit I was oblivious to Woolberry Fibre Co. The yarns are gorgeous. 3 out of 5 skeins are singles so they will be knit into  shawls or cowls in the future. The others will become socks I think.

I also bought more yarn from Lolo Did It. I of course wanted to indulge myself but I also wanted to help with Lolo’s Hurricane Harvey charity and I received my Harvey yarn this weekend. And it’s gorgeous and Lauren even added a complimentary tape measure! Always useful.

This yarn will become a pair of socks in the future.

So as you can see I have been spoiled lately with yarn. I hope I haven’t made you jealous or caused you to break your “no yarn buying” ban. I don’t often share my purchases but as I was on the subject of gifts and so I thought it would be fun.

On another note, I’m bringing the Maker of the Month feature back. I hadn’t intended on stopping during the summer but things happened. I’m hoping we will be doing the first feature in a week or two and the next maker is a yarn dyer and as always there will be a giveaway associated with the feature so stay tuned!

I think this will be all for today. I was going to show you my progress on the mystery kals but I have changed my mind and I’m not going to share until they are officially over. For the first time ever I have not shared pictures of my progress on these on social media and I have even avoided seeing other peoples pictures as well so this time it really is a true mystery knit a long for me.

I hope you have a wonderful week with lots of knitting time! Speak to you soon:)

My new hand dyed yarns

I’ve been working on dyeing some new yarns. As I’m closed for business now, I’m re-evaluating my shop and the items I offer. I’m going to narrow down my range of yarns and colors. I’ve been told that offering too many choices gives the buyer angst and they are more likely to leave the shop and go elsewhere because they are not able to make up their mind. So I don’t want that to happen any more! So I’m working on a range of “basic” colors. Something kind of standard that I’d have on offer all the time, repeatable colorways, which is new to me. I also want to have maybe seasonal offers with colorways that I’d offer only for a limited time for example or some one-offs for those that like unique yarns.

As for the weight or yarn types I’ll be doing: lace, fingering/4 ply and DK. I think these are the most commonly used yarn types as you can knit pretty much everything using these 3 types of yarns.

I’m also working on ideas for yarn clubs, I’m thinking : one sock yarn club with fingering weight yarn and 1 lace club with lace only yarns. They would be like a bi-monthly thing so 6 skeins over 12 months or 3 skeins over 6 months. I’m also toying with the idea of a “Goodies” club which would be a bi-monthly thing also and that one would include knitting accessories and mini skeins. What do you think of those ideas? Are you maybe a part of a yarn club already? Which one and do you enjoy it? Or is there a reason why you would NOT join a club? Would you prefer a “pay up front” thing or a “pay as you go” thing?

Any ideas and thoughts on the yarn and goodies clubs would be much appreciated. I really want to work on those and come up with something exciting that knitters ABSOLUTELY want to join in on. And you can help me do just that 🙂

Now some pictures! I’ve begun working on my new future colorways and I’ve come up with my “basic” colors and at least 2 “seasonal/special” colorways.  So here are some pictures to show you what I’ve done so far

www.knittinginfrance.com   These are mini skeins I dyed to work on my future basic colors and these will be dyed on my merino/nylon base yarn. I’m calling this range of sock weight yarns SHADES.

www.knittinginfrance.com   Here you have Shades of Magenta   www.knittinginfrance.com  And Shades of Blue

www.knittinginfrance.com And here mixed together you have Shades of Scarlet (red) and Shades of Jade (green)

 

And I’ve just begun thinking about doing some self striping yarns also and I’ve done 1 test so far of possible contenders. This would be on a 100% superwash merino base yarn.

www.knittinginfrance.com I actually quite like the colors and how they play together so the next step is to decide on the pattern. How long/short each color repeat should be so I will be doing some more testing and knitting before I can decide on the final version.

And then there is the lace. I will have 2 or maybe 3 base yarns. So far I’ve worked mostly 1 which is the merino, silk, stellina base. It is super soft and the 5% stellina gives it a little touch of glam and just overall light that brightens up the yarn I think. I don’t know about you but I’m definitely a stellina fan and I will be offering stellina yarns in all 3 weights!

www.knittinginfrance.com These are all rather soft colors that I think can work with delicate lace work. I have to work on their names as I haven’t decided on those yet but I do like the colors.

And then the “seasonal/special” colorways. Here is one that I’m doing in a stellina base fingering yarn and it is called Strawberry Frappuccino. This yarn is inspired by a sock pattern written specifically for my yarn by CC Almon of JavaPurl. This new pattern will be published this autumn, I don’t have an exact date yet but I’m really looking forward to that as it will be the very first pattern ever written specifically for MY yarn!

www.knittinginfrance.com I really like the outcome! I’ll be knitting my own pair of the socks as soon as the pattern gets published and I can buy a copy:)

What I have yet to work on is the DK weight. This I imagine will be used mostly for sweaters and hats and scarves/cowls maybe. I think this will be mostly solid or semi solid colorways. Not much varigation or stripes, at least not in the base line even though I might dye up a few “fun” ones as “seasonal/special” yarns.

Is there a color you LOVE and would like to see me dye? I know Teal is a big thing this autumn and I’ve come up with a great blend for teal and so I’m going to be doing that in all 3 yarn weights, maybe not the same exact color in all 3 weights but some variations of it at least. Other color ideas?

That’s all for today. Have a wonderful Sunday and hopefully you’ll have some time to knit and enjoy your crafting today. I wish you a great week for the new week just around the corner and I’ll be back with you soon:)