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Bundling, packaging and shipping. Oh my.

Where, oh where has my woobu gone?

Oh where, oh where can it be?

With its tails cut short

and its fringe cut long

where, oh where can it be?

And that my friends is the best ever request for a yarn order update we have ever received. Thank you Lynette you made my day.  Every time I picked up a skein of woobu I thought of you.  I know I’ve said this before but really we all need to hear good things again and again. Soul food.

We have the best customers.  I think knitters make the best customers.  I feel very lucky to be in this position where I get to interact with so many creative people.

I’ve heard this nasty rumour that some think we’re maybe wound a little tight and slightly obsessive.  I know. It’s just shocking and well, rude.

We’re so misunderstood.

Focus, intent, creativity and passion with a healthy does of smarts.



and off to the barn I go…

One of those days

One of those weeks…months… years… . I get it. Really, powers that be, I get it and now I’m just going to embrace the craziness that is my life. Why not? Nothing else is working.  There’s really no need to send bats swooping through my house to drive this point of yours home any further. I get it. 

Really, I’m sitting here writing expecting at any moment to have the bat (who we can’t seem to find since he made his entrance a bit ago) swoop over my head.  We get bats in the house every year.  I’ll never ever forget the first time which was about 2 weeks after we moved in. (Great welcome committee) I saw this brown thing perched on the quilt I had hanging on the wall in my office. I remember thinking, “Wow, they sure have some wicked moths out here”. Yeah right, a moth my ***.  Imagine my surprise when I went to remove it from my treasured quilt.  My son tried to tell me not to worry that he was sure the little guy was way more afraid of me than I was of him. Nope. Just not possible.

Since it happens every year, you’d think I’d have developed a thicker skin or have moved by now. Nope, not this girl. Every single time I start screaming, duck and run if possible. This time has been no different. Well… except I was calling my graphic designer Cassie and she answered the phone as I threw it down and ran screaming from the room.

I’m not proud. I’m not. When Cassie called back she said she was just about to get in the car and head this way or maybe call for help.

I’m sorry, Cassie.

Don’t get me wrong, I think bats are cool. They play an important role in that whole circle of life scheme of things and most certainly have a place on the planet. It’s just that their place is not in my house. Just not. And… I have yet to find where they are coming in. I think it’s’ the fan vent in the bathroom or the one in the hallway.  Really it’s a toss up between the two they are exactly alike. Honestly there’s a huge part of me that just doesn’t want to know. 

What if they are in the attic?

What if there are a whole lot of them up there? A flock? A gaggle? A herd? A colony!

See? Best not to know.

The last time this happened my friend Trudy told me that in certain Northwest tribal cultures a bat in your home is a sign of good fortune, the turning of a tide. Ok, so while I’m waiting for my tide to turn, I think I’m going to work out on the back deck. It’s warm, there’s internets and most probably no bats. They don’t love outside, do they?

Today we’re putting up the returning colours we’ve chosen (see below for a list of these) and 4 of the new oranges. I was going to put all of the oranges up but have been tweaking them for theme perfection, and then photographing them for hours. Seriously orange takes hours. Black and red a breeze compared to orange, my knitterly friends.  I finally figured out that it works best to put it on a contrasting background.

I have come to the realization that maybe, just maybe this might be too much orange to put forth onto the planet at one time. I’m concerned that it might whip up some sort of orange hurricane the likes of which has not been seen since that whole raven invasion. We all know what happened then. So I’m keeping Tigerlily and My Darlin’ Clemetine with me a little longer. I’m not quite ready to let them go just yet. I think I’m starting to like these little buggers. They’re even starting to look a little scummy.

Those of you that won the naming contest I have not forgotten you. I promise.

List of returning colourways:  Alina > Autumn > Alley Oop > Banded Agate > Basaan > Banded Agate > Blarneystone > Cockamamie > Cockeyed > Crabby McCrabbypants > Crazy Lace Agate > Gail”s Autumn Joy ( yippy) > Gypsum > Harlotty > Highway 30 > January One > Moss Agate > Mudslide > Mr. Green Jeans > Mystic Kelp > Oma Desala > Pirate’s Booty > Potomac > Rocktober > Rollingstone > Seal Rock > Tree Hugger.

New Colourways:  Tweety Bird > What’s Up Buttercup? > Orange you glad you aren’t a banana? > Peresephone’s Persimmon … .

They will go up late today. I need every extra second I can have these days. After all I am working under duress. 

Plus I think I need to go buy a butterfly net or a beekeepers hat.

November Silk Retreat

Here we go again. We had so much fun last time we’re doing it again in November.

Steph just posted all the particulars so go to her blog and read all about it.

We’ve got 45 spots and they go fast.

A bit of this and a bit of that.

So…. we’re extending the coupon code for 10% off that was in our Knitting Daily ad ( KD444) until the end of September. We’re doing this for several reasons but mostly because we’ve been buried in orders, recovering from a massive mill error and trying to catch up. We are almost there. In order to maintain some small grain of sanity and to keep team blue moon from a massive revolt I’ve not put up the fall colours or the new oranges.  Really if I had done this last week I’m sure they would’ve taken me out.  And I wouldn’t have blamed them.

We will add the new oranges that you all named and the returning seasonal ones at the end of this week, as we walk out the door for the fun and fabulous Oregon Flock and Fiber Festival. So I’m asking (begging) everyone that has yet to place and order or wants to place another to wait until the new colours are up at the end of this week.

As I said Oregon Flock and Fiber Festival is this weekend and if your in the area and have not had the pleasure you really should come. It’s my favourite festival fiber-wise in this area and is just grand fun. There are fiber animals, classes, contests, and all kinds of fiber folks sharing and selling their wares.  We’ll be there in our usual place in the 4-h building right nest to Morgaine of Carolina Homespun.

I spent all weekend in the dye barn this weekend getting prepped for OFFF.  Saturday was all about the rare gems which really rings my bell pretty loud.  I often use the rare gems as a testing ground for combining and mixing all kinds of colour craziness. No limits, anything goes.  And I mean anything.

Like maybe a bit of Scum of wonder.


A lot of goodness!

In colour and fiber and friends. As you know Debra and Debbi both became grandmums for the first time this year. The Rockin’ Sock Club campers from last April organized by Lisa Kobeck and Jen Clodious knit squares, sent notes and love for two grandma blankies. Campers from this area had a big stitch together party in August. Then Jen and Lisa put borders on them.

Last week the stars a lined to match blanky to grandma. Lisa and Jen whom were here helping to bundle pack and ship.  Debra is always here so… Debbi showed up to help and knit magic happened.



To all of you wonderful knitters/campers who knit squares for our Debs look at the happiness you made with a thought, a wee bit of yarn, some needles and each other.

As you can see they were both very surprised (which is not easy to do they are both very smart women) felt cherished, cried a bit, laughed a lot and I’m sure you’ll all here thank you soon.

I especially love the shot where they are looking at each other with the, “can you believe this” look.

Lisa and Jen please take an knit organizational bow.


Today Debra’s Dylan is 3 months old.  He quite the little man.  Measuring time by the growth of a child.  Just watch it fly by.

Did ya see the crowns? Virginia I love the crowns.

Mill Rant #59304508244

I’ve been advised on occasion not to share this kind of information because it might make me look bad or give those that don’t like me (I know… right)

ammunition, make me look like a whiner… the list goes on.  Whatever.

Information helps you makes better choices and plans, right?  I also think that the best way to change a faulty system is to take it to the end user and that my knitterly friends is us.

So here it is.

This week, in the middle of a massive order crunch ( not complaining) with both sock club and Oregon Flock and Fiber looming in the not so distant future, we lost 2 days of work. Actually that’s not quite accurate,we didn’t loose it those days, I know exactly where they are. They are hanging from the rafters of my studio. Hundreds of skeins of Woobu hanging from the rafters. Skeins we can’t sell. Skeins we dyed for orders that we’re running up against our promised shipping deadline on. Skeins that are not milled to spec.  Skeins that are overweight. Skeins once we problem solved the issue we had to redye in the correctly spun yarn.

WHY? Why you ask? 

I’ll tell why. Because the mill got in a bigger order while they were running ours. So they stopped ours and ran that one. When they went back to it they didn’t adjust the specs on the machine. Now I for one certainly understand a mistake.  I run a hand painting business I get it. But this mistake could have been caught had they checked the yarn before it left the mill or checked it when it arrived at the broker.

We caught it here. We caught it before it left here. None of it has left this building. Debra and I caught it, but kept dyeing because of that whole order crunch thing, while waiting to hear from the mill. Note to self: Don’t do that next time, it creates inner turmoil.

While I find it disturbing that there are obviously no quality control standards and checks and I most certainly do. The lack of this in the US mill industry has cost me a whole lot of sweat and tears ( no blood yet).

What I find the most disturbing is the attitude I get when this kind of thing goes down with a mill or broker. I can tell from the look on their faces and tone of voice that they think I’m a picky unreasonable wing nut.  I can tell because they say things like so what it’s a bit thicker no one but you will know. The first time I heard this I was so stunned I couldn’t form complete sentences. Those of you who know me know that this is no small thing.

I now point out the error of this thinking to them. I educate them on the hand knitter and our needs. We talk about pattern support for yarn and how can that possible happen if they can’t spin the yarn to the same specs.  I explain what goes in to designing a pattern for a specific yarn.  I tell them how much we spend on promoting such a design and yarn. And then I tell them about knitting with it. I explain about running out of yarn for a project and having to buy more and how frustrating it is to get it and have it knit to a different gauge than what you were working with.  I explain all of this very patiently but firmly with maybe a hint of steam escaping every once in awhile. I explain this to blank stares. I then tell them how much it’s going to cost them to continue this way. It’s amazing how quick they tune in then.

I think about this a lot and I swear before I exit the planet there will be better mill standards in the US wool industry. 

As I was finally dyeing my last skein for the day last night I had an idea that I think would help. I think that we need to teach them to knit.  If they knew from their own two hands what it was like to take two sticks and yarn and make stitches. If they could then watch those stitches build upon each other into a sock or a shawl or sweater. If they could then put it on and feel that woolly goodness. I think they would have a much better understanding of the “why” here.

Ok I’m off to the barn to dye yet more Woobu.

Before I go I want to say that I have an awesome team here at blue moon. Debra, Becky, Paula, Rosie, Anneli, Joann, Debbi, Susan, Jen, Lisa, Tammy. All hard working lovely women to whom I an so grateful.

Have a colourfully stitched weekend.

Name that Colourway WINNERS!

After several nights of tossing and turning with wickedly weird dreams involving Jessica Rabbit serving raspberry cordials, blood orange cosmos, orange fizzes and all kinds of pumpkin concoctions to her animated type cronies. The best part of these dreams, besides the raging orange aura, was the colourway subtitles running all the way through every scene.  Absolutely most memorable scene; Jessica serving an orange fizz to Felix the Cat in a tutu ( just dated myself) while the line,”lemon drops keep falling on my head” flash over them.

I love the part of my job that involves naming the colours. I love sharing this part of my job even more. These are some crazy cool suggestions. When we’ve been able to surface from the massive order influx we’ve laughed until tears are rolling.

I’m so inspired by your suggestions ( and my dream) that I want to waltz out to the barn and dye to the names. Maybe this winter when all is gray and cold we’ll play with some of this warmth and joy.

It was really hard to choose.  I really wish I had 2 skeins of each from that dye day because I’d combine a few but alas I do not. I did find that I had 2 Mr. Blank so I did pick 2 for that one. I hope you don’t mind, I just couldn’t help myself.

I bet you’d like me to shut up and tell you who won eh?

1.  Tweety Bird > Naomi

2.  What’s up buttercup? > Laura

3.  Darlin’ Clemetine > Katy

4.  Orange you glad I didn’t say banana? >Amelia

6.  Tigerlily > Stacy

Mr.Blank.  Persephone’s Persimmons endow Mr. Blank with Big Girl Panty power.  > Mel and Val

A big round of knitterly applause to you all for the creativity and to Naomi, Laura, Katy, Amelia, Stacy, Mel and Val.  Winners if you could email me your addresses at then I could get you yarn out to you.

Thanks everyone for playing. Great fun!

As you know it was our intention to put these colours up this week along with our seasonal favs. Due to a very large influx of orders we’re waiting until next week to do this so we can get caught up.

The Knitting Daily e-newsletter featured us and a discount coupon and came out on the 7th. Since then we’ve been hard and heavy in a very short period of time. We are doing our best to get all orders out in the time frame we promise which is 5 to 10 business days.  We most certainly will be on the 10 day end of this.

We’ve called in the knitter troops to help but what we really need is for the air here to be not so laden with moisture. It’s during these moments that I’m thankful I invested in the expensive monstrosity that takes up a third of the ceiling and pulls moisture out of the barn.  GO Betty!

Yes, we do name everything.


Doesn’t everyone?

Name that Colourway

Here are all the incarnations of cosy, fierce and dirty in the orange realm that Steph and I played with on our “my perfect orange” dye play day. These are the ones that I know I want to keep. Also the ones I know that I can repeat. Because finally after years and years of doing this I’ve finally learned my lesson and religiously take notes whenever I walk into that barn and pick up dye.

You’ll notice that there are a few yellows here also.  What? I ask you what is yellow if not a very pale orange? Mostly they’re here because I am colour curious and wanted to see what would happen if we added a pinch more of this yellow and maybe a dab of the other one. I could envision this cosy little orange of ours was going to also yield us some pretty fierce yellows.  Personally I think these two yellows are pretty hot stuff.

Anyway, here are our final six. Truly it is six, as you can see if you really look. I had a bit of a post-it debaucle and didn’t notice until my photo session was complete and the rain had started.  The #5 post-it was really clingy to it’s friend #4 and well you see what happened.  This is an error we are going to choose to embrace.

These lovelies need names.

Please put your names ideas in the comments. I’ll choose what tickles my fancy and if your colourway name is one of the lucky winners we’ll send you the original skein that Steph and I dyed.

For clarity let’s call that last post it with no number, Mr. Blank.

So we have colourway 1, 2, 3, 4, 6 and Mr.Blank who need their tonal essence captured in a word or very short phrase. You know how this rolls.


You have until Tuesday the 14th.

ps.  Please put the number of the skein you’re choosing the name for next to your suggestion.

Seasonal changes.

Ok, so here are the colourways that having been working hard and are in need of a small holiday.  It’s in their contract so… we have to oblige them. Most of them are headed off to the spa to get a tone up.

Carbon Dixie Chicks Dutch Canyon
FooFoo Raw Hard Rock Henpacked
I love what your wearing Jewel of the Nile Koi Koi
Lenka Little Bunny Foo Foo Lucy
Love in Idleness Metamorphic Olive Garden
Peak a boo Peony Petroglyphs Rock Star
Sassafras Scottish Highlands Sophie
Splotchy McSplotchypants Sunkissed Sands Titania
Torridon Waterlilies Footzey Foo
Froggin Pride Socktopus
SeaMar Valentina Boobie 2
A Little Dab’ll Do Ya Space Dust Algae
Purple Rain Pink Granite Mesa

On the 15th of September the train for the spa of glory leaves and the above tonal beauties will be aboard it.  We will be bringing back some of our fall favs. and adding some newbies. If you have any of our colourways you’ve not seen in awhile and would like to please let us know in the comments below.

Colour naming contest pics tomorrow.  (I’m working at a cafe’ in pdx waiting for kids and forgot to upload pics to laptop.dang, I hate when my plans are thwarted. Especially when I’m the thwarter!)

Due to a huge influx of orders we are postponing this until the 17th where we hope to have room to breathe and get the new colours photographed and formatted.

Holy smokes knitters

I know what you did over the Labour Day weekend.  You ordered yarn and patterns from us.  We have a whole lot of orders and emails and phone calls and we’re doing our best to got to you in a timely manner but there are way more of you than there are of us.

In answering emails this weekend I noticed that there are a whole lot of new customers so I’m going to give some info here in the hopes that this helps answer a few of everyone’s questions.

To see the colorways go to the top navigation bar and click on Shop Online.  You will then see in the side navigation bar the category Colourways. Click on Colourways and there they all are.

They are photographed in our Sock that Rock yarn.  Scroll through find the colour that makes your heart sing, click on it and scroll down to see if we offer it in the yarn you want. If we don’t please don’t hesitate to contact us. We have a whole lot of colours and we do not have all the yarns listed in all the colours. 

It is our intention to add pictures of all the yarns in the colours that they are going to be offered in the most and longest.  If your having any trouble at all please do not hesitate to contact us and we’ll do our best to assist.  The garment yarns are mostly offered in the watercolourways, shaded solids, ravens ans spirits.

Patterns and downloadable pdf’s.  We are in the process of adding this feature to our site.  Until then we have hard copies that we ship. Please check back in a few weeks to see if we have wrangled the web developers and bent them to our will.  Keep your fingers crossed.

We expect the Mopsy yarn for the Moonstruck sweater in the middle of October. It is a heavy worsted merino angora blend which is what gives that sweater it’s dreamy quality.  We have mimicked this with the Woobu/Peru combo. Keep in mind that both the Mopsy and the Woobu/Peru combo are going to give you a fair amount of warmth.  One of the design elements I really like about using the Woobu and Peru together besides the texture is the colour opportunity.  I was in the barn this weekend doing deep breathing exercises (900 orders in 2 days is a lot) and a little tonal therapy. I decided that the Moonstruck I wanted to knit would be Woobu in Grawk and Peru in Mossly Manly. The Grawk is an under coat of greens overlaid with black and Mossly Manly is dark grey with those same greens. Can you see it?  When they dry, it’s raining today so it’s taking forever to dry. Considering going out with a blow dryer, I’ll post pics.

I’m so excited.  If you want colour suggestions for this I’d be more than happy (deliriously so) to help.

We will be at Stitches East and we’ll have these patterns and yarns for sale there.

We’ve put up the Holiday colours.

Tomorrow I”m going to post a list of the colours that are going to take a wee rest and then you can give us suggestions on the ones you’d like to see come back.

Also the “ All about orange name that skein contest”.

So stayed tuned.

This weekend was Art in the Pearl where Portland celebrates it’s artsy self.

It was a grand time. 




A few things

I’m going to preface this post with a disclaimer. I’m sick with a wicked head cold and am stuffed up so bad that forming cohesive thought is a bit of a challenge. I’d wait to post but there is a Knit Daily e-newsletter coming out today and we’re featured.  Which is kind of cool.  At the very bottom of the newsletter there is a 10% off coupon code that is good from today the 3rd until September 20th.  You type in the code in the appropriate field when you place an order and our cart system will take the 10% off. 

The patterns are hard copies not downloadable pdfs.

So if you’re a Knit Daily subscriber look for it and if you’re not sign up!

We’ve also added a few new yarns and colours to the site:

Síofra a delicately beautiful infant set designed by Stephanie using our new yarn Marine Silk. Marine Silk is a silk, sea cell rayon and wool blend. It is so very soft. It makes the perfect fabric to put on that delicate baby skin. It has a lovely drape and we choose the percentages in this blend so the silks enhanced each other. I keep thinking I should have called it Marine Silky.

You can also knit Síofra out of the silk hankies.  The one Steph did like this looks like she pulled it out of a protective nest and has been used for generations.

Heartbreakingly beautiful.


It makes me almost say: “ I can’t wait to knit this set for one of my grandbabies”,but I know better than to tempt the fates with a statement like that.

Next in our line up Is Moon Struck . Yes it is finally ready.  Remind me never ever to name a pattern with the word struck anywhere near it.

As I said in a previous post about this design the original yarn is not available until October.  Sorry this is still true. Although the mill has informed me that they have put a rush on it so we’ll see.

In the meantime we have two other yarn options. You can combine Peru & Woobu and knit them together or you can try our new organic wool Gaea. it knits up beautifully in both. The Peru/Woobu combo gives you a garment with more drape than the Gaea does. It also has that halo effect from the Alpaca in the Peru.

I’m sorry and pretty embarrassed about the yarn fiasco in relation to this sweater.

It’s such a beautiful piece and fun to knit . Karen has designed for us another stunning sweater.

I’m going to knit one for my daughter Sophie using Gaea in the Spruced colourway.

She’s just going to love it.

And last but not least we’re adding two new colourways today.

Cosy, Fierce and Dirty Orange and River Rocked.

I love both of these colourways a whole lot and for very different reasons.

River Rocked. River Rocked makes me swoon with colour joy. It was my favorite colourway from the sock club last year and I’ve been waiting none too patiently to be able to offer this colour I love to every knitter gracing the planet.

I want to dye every yarn and fiber I have in it and then knit, spin or weave it. I want socks and I think I’m going to spin enough to make myself a mitten/scarf combo. I was thinking last night that maybe even in the lace weight of the Marine Silk and knit something small and lacy to wear around my neck all winter.  Sigh.

Cosy,Fierce and Dirty Orange.  Orange is not a colour I gravitate to a whole lot on it’s own and if I do it is usually the coppery end of the spectrum. I use orange to enhance or offset other tones. Orange is a big component of my favorite season, fall.  I guess what I’m saying is orange and I are friendly and have what I consider a good working relationship.

Orange is not my personal passion colour, green is. However, it is my dear friend and business partner’s passion. 

Over the years she and I have discussed all the merits of orange and I have made some colourways and rare gems with her in mind. 

When she was here last our mission, as you can and probably have already read on her blog, was to make her perfect orange, the colour of her heart.

As a dyer and colour obsessed chemist, I love learning about a hue through another person, preferably someone I love who loves that particular shade.  Walking in that person’s colour shoes.  For me this is the best way to get a holistic experience to translate into colour.

Steph and I did this with her orange. We had a massive amount of fun and learned a ton. We learned about colour, she learned some about dyeing, I learned more about dyeing ( teaching always does this for me), we learned more about each other ( Steph: That’s too much. Me: That’s not enough) and we had a blast.

So much fun

We got a whole lot of colourways out of this play date of ours.

I’m going to post a contest on Tuesday for you all to help me decide what should stay and how we should name them.

Until then, Cosy, Fierce and Dirty Orange is yours for the ordering.

Have a wonderful and safe holiday weekend.