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Super Wolf Blood Moon

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So in 2018 we opened the year with a Super Blue Blood Wolf Moon which was quite the event! Well here we are again, starting 2019 with a Super Wolf Blood Moon. The only difference being that this super eclipse wolf moon is not a blue moon. It is a very special full moon though. It’s a total lunar eclipse happening the same time as a super moon which is when the moon is closest to the earth. That my friends is whole lot of lunar mojo and we haven’t even added in that it’s the wolf moon and blood moon. If I was this full moon I would be a little nervous about living up to all of this. I bet the moon does not have performance anxiety.

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Of course I have made a a couple of colorways in honor of all of this moon magic. It seems like I have not made new colorways in a bit and making these few made me so very happy!  One of the drawbacks to not having the sock yarn and the stress that has gone with it is the creating new hues. Anyway… of course I created a Super Wolf Blood Moon which was fun. Moon inspired colorways are ind fo my things right up there with chickens and pond scum. Oohhh one of the moon colorways this year must have pond scum in it.  I’m excited to see how it knits up.

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And then I also created a Wolf Moon colorway for January’s Full Moon!

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We will have both of these colorways up on the website later this week. I know… new techie was not able to get to it. In the mean time if you want to order these you can do so by ordering whatever base you want in another color ( I would choose a moon one just cause) and then int he comments section of you order tell us you want either Super Wolf Blood Moon or Wolf Moon or both!!

I am going to do something I’ve been wanting to do for a few years and it has just never worked out. There is a time and place and I feel like this is the year. So keep a look out for a moon colorway for each month this year. And if you have thoughts or ideas for them let me know you ideas. Our next one is February which I believe is the Cold Moon.

Did you know that there will not be another total lunar eclipse visible in the US until 2022. So enjoy this one. I know I am. I hope it is not cloudy or foggy this evening, a tall order for the Pacific Northwest in the winter.

One of my favorite poets passed away this week Mary Oliver. Mary Oliver is beloved and I am sire I am not the only one of us touched by her and her poems. One of her collections that really speaks to me is called The Twelve Moons. I know. I am nothing if not predictable. Anyway as we color our year in full moons I will share some of Mary’s poetic musing on each moon and life.Here is her poem Wolf Moon.

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Wolf Moon by Mary Oliver

Now is the season of hungry mice, cold rabbits,
lean owls hunkering with their lamp-eyes
in the leafless lanes in the needled dark;
now is the season when the kittle fox
comes to town in the blue valley of early morning;
now is the season of iron rivers, bloody crossings,
flaring winds, birds frozen in their tents of weeds,
their music spent and blown like smoke to the stone of the sky;
now is the season of the hunter Death;
with his belt of knives, his black snowshoes,
he means to cleanse the earth of fat;
his gray shadows are out and running – under
the moon, the pines, down snow-filled trails they carry
the red whips of their music, their footfalls quick as hammers,
from cabin to cabin, from bed to bed, from dreamer to dreamer.

We’ve added to the website our 4th Semester of School of Yarn ~ Silk Road! So check it out. We are going to journey back in time down that Silk Road and have a god long look at the culture that is silk! Our yarns are yummy and two of them are only available through the club right now. So if you ever wanted to learn more about silk and the best ways to knit with it then join Karen and I for this next fiber adventure.

Okay I am off to finish some sock yarn writing and knitting

Hope you are having a great weekend. Enjoy our Super Wolf Blood Moon!! It’s cloudy here so I am thinking it’s not in the stars to see it here tonight. A little sad.

Blue Moon KonMari and yarn/shipping updates

Well, my friends, we have have one storage pod empty and the other half empty. Holy moly – what an undertaking. It’s amazing how much stuff can collect when you’re not looking. Hell, even if you are looking and are just busy. You know how it goes. “I’ll just put this here and then come back and sort it all out later when I have time.” hahaha.  And then the next thing you know, your closet is overflowing … or your bookshelves or both of your storage pods, as the case may be!

Anyway, if anything this Pod-KonMari process has been an interesting trip down memory lane. I am sorry to say we are not holding everything and thanking it.… well, maybe the knit samples. Oh my goodness.

Karen is here for the weekend so we can work on a bunch of Club and school stuff and do some planning. Last night we dug through four of those big Rubbermaid bins! And oh my goodness: the things we used to knit! I will post pictures over the next few weeks. It’s pretty interesting and was certainly entertaining after a pretty stressful week.

I have lots and lots and lots of socks! Some pairs and some singles and we are thinking up some de-stashing fun for those. So look on Instagram for our sock de-stash party.

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Of course we found more yarn for Mill End Mystery Grab Bags, so I have put a few more of those up for sale.

We also found a number of panels of grid-wall and extra hooks leftover from our Sock Summit days. We are selling those locally, since who needs 80 grid-wall slats? (80! I kid you not!) If you are local to the Portland area and interested, you can email info@bluemoonfiberarts.com for details.

Our BFL Sport Farewell Special is still running and lots of you are supporting our send-off, so thank you. It does make it a little more palatable (if no less sad). We are starting to run a little low, though, so if you have yet to order and would like to play along, now would be the time to do so. Samantha (the designer) is thrilled we are going to do a Vancouver Shawl KAL! And as ever, I am available for color consulting: send me an e-mail and we can chat color options!

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As I mentioned in the newsletter today, we will not be going to Stitches West this year. It’s a hard decision and not one we made lightly. I do know that we are not the only ones making this choice as hard as it is. I love Stitches West and being back there last year was all kinds of wonderful. And… I have pretty much been looking forward to this year’s show since the last one ended. However, with all of the yarn delays and being behind because of them, we decided it was best to sit this one out as we get caught up (and also ensure that we don’t get in this position again anytime soon!!)

YARN AND SHIPPING UPDATE

What is being held up by the Sock Yarn delay:

• Rockin’ Sock Club, School of Yarn and Out of the Hue Club.
• Any website orders that are for only Socks that Rock.
• If you placed a mixed order (Socks that Rock plus other bases), we are shipping out partial orders with the yarn we have available; the Socks that Rock will ship out separately.
• The Anniversary package was held up by the bags, and now that the bags are coming in, the yarn has become the issue! Of course it is. For those of you who are next in line for your Anniversary packages, we are offering other yarn base choices as substitutes for the Socks that Rock in your package. I am in the process of emailing those of you who are in the queue.

Mills are not the best at time frames or communication. We are passing along the information we get, as we get it. I expect to start seeing sock yarn this week.

Besides our Socks that Rock delay, I have some other yarn news to share to keep you in the loop and to also to share with you all where we find ourselves in the yarn industry right now.

As you may have noticed, Tigger is currently hidden on the website. We are almost out and the stock we do have on hand is dedicated to School of Yarn and a few LYS orders. As of right now, the news from the broker is that the mill that made Tigger won’t continue to do so. It is a high-energy cabled yarn, which is not the easiest to make to begin with. When you add in the factor that most of the mill equipment in this country is pretty old, that makes it even more challenging to make. We are looking at other sources and options and I will keep you posted on that.

Our lot of Single Silky Targhee is running a little low; we are trying to reorder that and coming up with the some of the same issues as with the Tigger. Oh, and did I mention that we are also running up against low amounts of Targhee wool in the States?

The mill that has been making our Silky Victoria has declined to do so. (Are you sensing a theme here, cause I certainly am.) So it will now be made elsewhere, but it takes time to get a yarn started at a new mill (lots of samples, testing and such). We have our needles crossed that this will be a seamless transition!

I believe that we are going to be seeing more and more of this mill-shuffling in the future; as a result, we will be having to plan farther and farther ahead than we have in quite a while (if ever).

COMMUNICATION AND CUSTOMER SERVICE

At the moment I am your lead in customer service (with Kalia as backup in shipping).

I am answering emails as soon as I can, usually within 24 hours unless they come in on the weekend. (Which a lot do, since most us all work during the week.) I do work through the weekend, but sometimes I won’t finish answering a weekend’s worth of e-mails until the beginning of the week.

I update this blog every weekend (there’s also a blog for the Rockin’ Sock Club, which gets updated less often, as necessary). Also once a week (usually on Fridays), I send out an e-mail newsletter through Constant Contact. The newsletter goes out to all our mailing lists every week; however, because these are bulk emails, it is possible that your firewalls see them as spam and aren’t letting them through on your end. It happens.

What I do see (by looking at the analytics on the back end here) is that while there are bounce-backs, a lot of people don’t click to open and read the newsletter. And hey – I understand why. As fiber-loving, creating people, we are inundated with email newsletters all the time. But if you’re looking for information about yarn status and general news about what’s going on over here, I am reaching out with this information in several ways – it’s in all those places for you to see, in addition to my being here on email.

We know a lot of you are on social media in all sorts of places these days; and thank you for sharing your love of Blue Moon there! But we need to remind you that Social Media is not someplace we can or will do customer service. There are just too many places to keep track of, like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Ravelry. Some large companies employ one or more people just to monitor their social media feeds! And even then, the folks who work on all that would likely refer customer service questions back to the people who are next to the yarn, or on the computers with the orders, to answer specific questions.

For customer service questions and issues (order status, color questions, yarn updates), please communicate with us directly via e-mail. In an e-mail conversation, we can address your order questions and concerns directly and personally (in a way social media threads can’t support).

If you ever e-mail us and don’t get a reply in a day or two, please check to see that our replies aren’t getting filtered out or caught in your firewalls. When in doubt, try sending your e-mail again from another address (gmail addresses almost always get through!). We are doing our best to get you the information you want right away.

Thank you for your patience and understanding as we get out footing back.

Have a great weekend!

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It’s a new yarn…

Hi…

Oh my goodness what a week. Do you ever have those weeks where nothing and I mean nothing turns out like you planned. I did this week. Well, actually let’s be real the late yarn shipment means this has been my reality for a while now. I just feel like this week upped the ante a bit.

I have finally sold the 2 huge storage pods that I bought the year of the first Sock Summit to store all the things we needed for that and also yarn. And as happens if you have a space things do come along to fill it. Easier to put things in the pods than decide what to do with them. Anyway long story short we do not need them anymore and I would like to have them not blocking my view on my wetland. So we are cleaning them out!

Oh my… such an undertaking, they are big pods. Yesterday we built a bonfire in the fire pit and burned leftover old RSC dyer’s notes and pattern pdf’s that we can’t sell. At first I felt sad as I watched all that work go up in smoke but then I had this wonderful moment where it felt like all of that wonderful color and knit energy and love was not boxed up in a pod but set free to fly away into the world to hopefully spark the imagination of some innocent soul who does not yet know the joy of knitting! So that’s what we did was set all of that creative and knit energy free. A beautiful thing really if you think about it!! We also roasted hot dogs for lunch and had s’mores, as ya do!

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So if you feel a little more knit energy in the air it was us!

LOOK!!!!!

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It’s a new yarn! Panda is the long lost cousin to our Woobu. A light and lovely 3 ply fingering-weight of a yarn with just enough bamboo to give us that silver hazey sheen we know and love so much! The addition of nylon adds a little strength and also some depth of color which I am enjoying. I was surprised at how lofty Panda is. I expected it to be a little more dense with not as much life to it but it has seriously surprised me. I can see Panda in all kinds of shawls, scarves and yes even sweaters! Also, I am so going to test it out as a sock yarn. We are offering Panda at an introductory price of 23.00.

Please let us know what you think and if you would like us to add this lovely yarn to our Blue Moon line-up. And who knows if we purchase enough maybe we can charm them into bringing back Woobu!

NOTE: There is no picture of Panda at the moment on the website. It would be the one you see here. We ran into some technical weirdness we are fixing.

Vancouver Shawl KAL!

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In keeping with putting good knit and yarn energy into the world no matter what Karen and I have decided that yes to a proper knit goodbye to our BFL Sport.

So…grab your yarn. In a few posts before this one you’ll find all of the info about our BFL Sport and Seduction yarn specials. You will also find color trio suggestions for this stunning shawl. I am so happy we are doing this. Celebrating the yarn itself ans one of my favorite ( and it turns out yours too) shawls designed by one of my favorite people!! Seriously could not be better. well of course unless BFL Sport was not going away. I guess that would make it better, wouldn’t it? Sigh.

Please oh please if you need color help ask me. I have had so much fun putting together trios for you. Send an email to info@ bluemoonfiberarts.com and put Vancouver Shawl in the subject line and then give me an idea of the color direction you want to go.

I feel a little sad for Seduction which is also a very nice yarn. I would feel a little left out if I was Seduction. So stay tuned. Hmm…

Have a great weekend.

on special: Seduction

Ah, knitters … we are so easily seduced by yarn, aren’t we?

In this case, it’s all in the name: Seduction is a glossy little temptress of a yarn, combining 50% merino for woolly softness with 50% Tencel for glorious sheen. It’s a combination that was bound to win you over… even before she was discounted at 20% off!

We’re sorry to see her go — but our loss could be your yarn collection’s gain. Time to let yourself be seduced by Seduction while there’s still some of her to go around!

Seduction is a true fingering-weight yarn, knitting up well in the 7 stitch per inch range and sporting 400 yards per skein. The gals in the dye barn would like you to know that the Tencel in here doesn’t fully absorb the dye, so you get some slightly muted hues — more than made up for by the shimmery gloss! So don’t expect these to be super-dark if you’re ordering a Raven or other black-based colorway. Like the Woobu of old, these will come up a bit lighter in tone on Seduction.

I got to play with my skein of “Lagoon” (I’m so into the greens lately!), and wanted to see what this glorious finewool/Tencel blend could bring to our projects.

Jagged Triangular Scarf SideFirst up, I wanted to find a pattern that helps y’all make the most of a skein or two. Michelle Krause’s ‘Jagged Triangular Scarf’ (free!) pattern has you weigh your skein before you begin, then start work at one edge and grow it towards the center. When you’ve used up half your yarn by weight (or perhaps just a smidge less), you start decreasing down to the other end! Clever. There’s lots of garter stitch here for easy knitting, and an 8-row increase-then-bind-off repeat that’s just enough to hold your interest through the long winter evenings ahead. This would make a fabulous little wardrobe boost for spring!

IMG_4040And as you can see, in Seduction it’s all kinds of glorious. I love the little petal-shaped edges, and the slipped-stitch selvages elevate garter stitch to an elegant new level.

But let’s say you want to take advantage of Seduction’s warm-weather properties: the Tencel that makes up half of this yarn is such a cool, smooth texture against the skin, it just begs to be knitted up by those of you in the Southern end of things! It also lends itself beautifully to lace and other openwork projects, since the Tencel will lay down so smoothly with blocking (while the Merino gives it the memory it needs to not bag out of shape).

CleverKnits’ ‘Bias’ pattern makes a scarf or shawl with a simple biased openwork pattern that’s a cinch to knit — and the designer gives you all the information you need to cast on more or fewer stitches to create the size you want (or your yarn allows).

IMG_4039I cast on 41 stitches to make the scarf size recommended, and am really enjoying the rhythm of the RS rows. (On the WS, you get what I call a ‘purl-side vacation’ — no pattern to memorize so you get to daydream a little!)

And if you weigh your skein before you start, then weigh it again after your 6-row garter-stitch edging before launching into the bias openwork stitch pattern, you’ll be able to make the absolute most of your skein(s) by stopping when you have just enough to knit that border again before binding off!

Warm-climate knitters, take note: Seduction could be your answer to handknit sock projects! A lot of knitters on Ravelry have used Seduction for warm-weather footwear, using patterns like Ann Budd’s ‘Seduction Socks’ and Cookie A’s ever-popular ‘Pomatomus’.

seductiontempestBEAUTYBut what’s got me hot to cast on Right!Now! is Ann Weaver’s ‘Tempest’ cardigan (from a ten-year-old issue of Knitty — ten years already!). There’s so much clever design in this pattern, I almost don’t know where to start. I love the two-color stripes, which let you play with Tina’s rich colorways in so many different combinations. But do you see what Ann’s done there at the waist? The stripes get narrower, giving the whole design an optical effect of hourglass that accentuates the waist in a flattering way — whether you feel like you have a waist or no!

I also love the dainty little buttons (14 of them!) that allow you to button this cardigan up strategically in the way that works best for you and your outfit. So much to love in one little cardi! And it’s knitted at a gauge of 20 sts =4″/10cm, so even though you’re using finer yarn, the knitting won’t take forever. Grab 2-3 skeins of each colorway in Seduction, and you’ll be sporting this hot little number come spring at your favorite neighborhood café!

No matter what size project you choose, you’ll enjoy the process of being seduced by Seduction. And when she’s gone, she’s gone, so get those orders in straight away!

Happy New Year and a Special Birthday!

May your coming year be filled with magic and dreams and good madness. I hope you read some fine books and kiss someone who thinks you are wonderful, don’t forget to make some art ~ write or draw or build or sing or knit or live as only you can. And I hope, somewhere in the next year you surprise yourself.

~ Neil Gaiman

I thought as a New Years message I would share with you the power of knitting and friendships.

January 1 is the beginning of the New Year a time most of us reflect on the past year. We look at what we have done or not done, what we have learned… and so on and then, we let go before we move on towards a new beginning (year). It’s really nice to have the chance for a fresh start that is marked by the New Year. Some of us do deep cleaning both externally and inside ourselves. With the best of intentions we make lists and promises and set goals.

Being of Irish descent one of the traditions I follow is the deep clean which really feels quite wonderful. Moving out all the bits and pieces of living that has collected through out the year that I don’t need. Making space for whatever comes my way in the upcoming year. There needs to be space for the fresh and new!

I also like to take time to reflect on the people in my life that I love and to make sure I have been a good friend to them and if there is anything I need to change to make sure they know and feel my love and support.

Which brings us to the other absolutely wonderful reason I look forward to and celebrate January 1st which is it’s my friend Cara aka @januaryone birthday.

I love Cara so much! She is such a wonderful human being and I feel so very lucky and honored to call her my friend. So celebrating her birthday seriously puts the icing on the cake that is January 1st!

Cara is one of those people where I just feel better knowing she is walking the planet along with me. Her being gives me strength and is all kinds of light and joyful. (She is going to red this and laugh but it is true Cara!)

Cara and I met years and years ago through….you guessed it! Knitting!! Socks that Rock to be specific. She was one of the first if not first people to join the sock club. I think maybe she was the first. So basically sock knitting and the Jaywalker sock pattern. Remember all those Jaywalkers we knit? Well I didn’t I was too busy dyeing the yarn. hehe

Cara and I have one of those friendships that stand the test of time. We gone from talking on the phone almost everyday to emails, texts, instagram love notes and chatting on the phone a few times a year. Every time I hear her voice on the phone it’s like no time at all has passed. It’s instant and wonderful!

There are quite a few big things in my life that she is a part of because of her support and love and…her willingness to talk and listen about color and yarn. There are not many people I feel I can really talk about color with that get it or me and Cara is one them and actually maybe the first. Cara is one of the bloggers that saved the sock club when the bank returned our $$ because they thought we were running a sock knitting scam.

I hope I have been at least half as good a friend as she has been to me!

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The picture here is of a tiara that I bought her for her birthday on in 2006. Yes, it has been that long!!

Cara, I love you so much and am so thrilled to celebrate your 49th birthday!! I am thinking we need to plan some color and knit craziness for 50 my friend. Maybe we should actually meet in real live person!!!

Love

tina