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Posts from the ‘General News’ Category

The cost of craft happiness

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If you have been reading my blog and newsletters recently or been at one of my lecture/storytelling events, then you’ve probably heard me talk about the changes in our little part of the textile industry. Growth and change are an inevitable and necessary part of life. Since I have been part of this industry of ours for almost 20 years, I have witnessed all kinds of changes. Hell – when I started we were seriously into fun fur, and there were basically a handful of hand dyers and no Ravelry!

Today we’re going to talk about the cost of wool and yarn. I remember way back when I bought my first pound (not ounces but a full-on pound) of fiber; and then not a year later, my very first kilo. I have to tell you I felt like such a grown-up crafty woman when I ordered that first kilo. I was pretty proud of myself.

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At that point in time there was a very, very large surplus of Merino top – mostly in Australia – and we worked from that supply for a good long time with very few (and very small) price increases. Those price increases were usually due to trends in the industry and/or changes in the exchange rate of the dollar. Other contributing factors were of course disease and weather: drought is the biggest factor that affects a sheep’s well being and therefore its wool production. Drought has most definitely played a heavy hand in our wool surplus and pricing and that is something we are experiencing right now.

I shared with you at the end of last summer how wool ( especially Merino) prices were going up 20% all in one go, which was something I have never experienced in my years of making and dyeing yarn. I raised prices a wee bit last Fall but mostly tried to eat those costs, as did my suppliers and brokers, in the hopes that things would change for the better. Well, my fiber-loving friends, they are changing, but unfortunately not really for the better. Australia is experiencing a drought which means a shortage of wool. The one bright light for us here in the US is that the dollar is doing well in that part of the world; otherwise our price increase for top would be over 20%.  One of my brokers said it would be 40% which is a staggering thought.  I KNOW!!

Domestic wool pricing is also rising for some of the same weather reasons (including fire) and also demand. The demand right now for domestic and local fiber is higher than it has ever been, which of course also contributes to price increases. Mills in this country are also working at better wages for mill workers (which have historically been awful) and upgrading their equipment. Which is a good thing and certainly something we want to support.

There is more of a demand for wool right now than there pretty much has ever been in the history of our industry. While a thriving and growing industry is a good thing there needs to be a balance between supply and demand and right now there is not. I could go into a lot more detail about the why and how of it all but this is getting to be quite the blog post already so maybe another time. I can talk about this more – if you are interested just let me know. What this all means is you are going to see some pretty dramatic price increases this year. We have not even looked at the whole tariff thing and how that is going to effect availability and pricing in the craft industry at large.

After spending a whole lot of time on the phone with our brokers, suppliers and mills we I have some to the conclusion that I need to raise our prices.  I like to keep things as affordable as possible for us all! However based on the price increases we are experiencing both in wool (Merino), silk, and yak it is just not sustainable to not have a substantial increase.

And while this price increase is probably one of the bigger jumps we have ever made, I have run it by quite few folks in the industry (including a bunch of our LYS’s) and they all agree that we were already on the low end of the pricing spectrum especially for our big ass skeins.The biggest increase are on our big skeins and even then if you look at the weight and yardage it is still a deal since most of our big skeins (weighing in at 8-9 oz) have close to 700 yds in them for around US$40.00, which for all of that is still a very good price. To give you a different perspective, if you broke that skein into 4 ounces and 300 to 400yds each, they would be US$20.00; most hand-dyed skeins of yarn on the market with that weight and yardage are at least US$26.00.

Please know this is not something any of us take lightly – from rancher to LYS owner.  After all, this is our livelihood and something we are pretty passionate about. A skein of yarn supports so very many wonderful folks and animals in the circle of wool life! So with each project you cast on, think about all the great wool producers – from sheep to ranchers to mill workers to dyers to LYS owners – you are supporting with your dollars!

Our prices will be changing on September 14th so you have time to stock up at current prices if you like. (Time to get that Fall/Rhinebeck project going!)

Thank you for listening and for your support!

New Prices:

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Shipping update:

Sock Club shipped last week as did The School of Yarn. We are  diligently working on the KAL orders and all of the August orders that came in with them. Yarn is showing up!!!!

For years now I have heard your stories of stalking the postal carriers for your Blue Moon packages. Luckily for me I have had the same UPS and USPS worker bees (Connie and Jeff) for years so they know me. The stalking here for our yarn and fiber is real!! Every time any delivery truck drives up I run out to greet them with fingers crossed. If all they have is office supplies it is very disappointing. Anyway I do see the light at the end of this one. And I cannot tell you how much we appreciate your patience and understanding. I know that a price increase is probably not the best reward but think of it as your part in sustaining our hand (knit, crochet, spinning, weaving, felting, dyeing…) community and industry. We all depend on each other. It’s one of the reasons I do not feel like I an independent artisan; I feel like I am a community one. It seriously takes a village to make yarn! I feel so very blessed and lucky to be part of such a community.

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Karen and I are working on our first shipment of our Out of the Hue color club and oh my goodness this is going to be all kinds of fun!! So much color joy! We are going to have all kinds of fun. Primary, secondary and tertiary fun. LOL!

Shadey and tonal fun too! Shadey fun is the best kind. Okay I’ll stop. It’s a little late and it has been on long day with lots of math and weights and measures.

Before I go though, Team Blue Moon and I have decided that our October Dye Day Extravaganza is going to be very Halloween themed. We are so dressing up and will have all kinds of tricks and treats! You do not want to miss this dye day!

 

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All the things…

Oh my goodness there is so very much going on I do not quite know where to start. I feel a little bit like the white rabbit in Alice and Wonderland.

I know… let’s start with some good news. I think I mentioned to the sock club and maybe here too about the neighbor trouble I have been having with the people who live next door to me with whom I share a drive. It quite very intense over the past few months and honestly scary. I love here alone so… .

Anyway last weekend they put their house up for sale and it has sold!!! It sold in like 3 days which is kind of crazy for this neck of the woods.

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So I feel kind of like I have my own personal miracle. I have lived here for almost 20 years. I love it. It is my haven and I was honestly considering moving me and Blue Moon elsewhere it was so bad. So this is just the very very best thing and I am so grateful!! I hope they are happier in there new home.

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Our yarns are arriving and we are getting orders out! We are so very sorry for the delay but truly it was out of our control and we are doing our very best! I have been doing this for a long time and these things just happen. This is so much better than the time the sock yarn showed up and it was not my yarn and I had to send it back and cancel the shows we were going to. Oy!!  I was thinking the other day that I should pitch a yarn related sitcom based on what I have seen and experienced over these 18 years. Hell just the sock club and bank drama would be worth a few episodes.

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We have contacting all orders past our promised time frame. So if you have not heard from us we got junk mailed out. If you need your yarn asap let us know so we can see what we can do. Our supplier is working diligently to make this all better.

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I have added another DYE CAMP Session  for this fall so check that out! I might add another but I need to check my schedule. I am pretty booked out this fall.

I will be teaching a 2 day dye class at the Stitchin’ Post on September 7th and 8th. I am also giving a talk on the 6th about what inspires us. I’m honored and excited to be working with the lovely and talented ladies of the Stitchin’Post. I think there is still room if you want to immerse yourself in color for a few days in Sisters Oregon.

On the following weekend I will be at All Wound UP in Edmonds Washington on Saturday the 15th from 12:00 to 3:00. I will have a trunk show and a yarn tasting. I would love to see you and any show and tell you might have.

I told you…a lot of happenings!

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Autumn Dye Day Extravaganza!!!

We do love our Dye Day that we have with the barn sale!! A whole bunch of you have requested that we do more so… we have added and Autumn one!!!  I know. I’m so excited. I had so much fun at this last one I did not want it to end. I decided to have it October 20th which is a Saturday . I tis the weekend of Rhinebeck so those of us who cann’t attend Rhinebeck can console ourselves with a little color and yarn. Since it is my fav time of year we will have some hot cider and pumpkin type treats and will dress according for the season. We are a bunch of dye witches after all! So bring a picnic and come join us for the day. Maybe we can even bob for some apples!! I wish I had a corn maze!!! Anyway these fill up fast so do not wait!! Also this one registration fee is a wee bit more to cover costs that the barn sale aspect usually covers.

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You might notice that we have done a color shift! Yup We have have added HOLIDAY HUES for the next week. We’ve been getting a fair amount of requests so we have added quite a few in both the Multicolor and Bespeckled color categories!  All of which are returning hues! New ones will come a bit later. In a week we will take these down an put up our Autumn/Halloween line up. I would put a list of them here but I think they are pretty obvious by their names when you shop by Colorway! So many Gnome colorways for the holidays.

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Photo Credit: Pom Pom Quartely

Have you seen the new all about the Moon Issue of Pom Pom Quarterly?!! It is stunning. I want to knit just about everything in it! Truly!! I mean I am all about the moon especially this year so this just made my heart sing.  We’ve gotten quite a few requests for color suggestions for that STUNNING cardigan in the front cover. Ixchel by Catherine Clark ! So beautiful. I am working on color pairing suggestions right now. Also…I will finally be adding to the website that stunning yellow (Sunbeam) and a this blue black I have been trying to photograph for a month now so look for those this week!  Our yarns bases that I recommend based on the gauge they suggest are pretty much any of the fingering weight ones but most especially Cloud 9, La Luna Fingering, and Socks that Rock right off the top of my head.  I think I am going to knit mine in Ravenscroft and then go pale blue grey for the moons instead of the gold.  Still musing it over!

Okay I am sure there are things I am forgetting! We were short handed this week due to vacations and such. So I am spending this weekend playing catch-up.

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There is still room in our  Out of the Hue Color club!! And the last time I checked we were almost full up on our Moon Shadow Anniversary Package offerings so get them while you can!

 

 

We will be shipping both the sock club and the School of Yarn this week!! Okay going to post and send out newsletter which is at least a day late!

Oh I remembered!!

I uncovered about 60 skeins of TASY BOO so if you missed out first go around there are more and then…they will be gone.

Also if you are anywhere near The Fold in Marengo Illinois and have felt you miss out on our Annual Barn Sale well now is your chance! We have shipped her quite a bit of sale yarns for her Labor Day Sale which she is running right now. She will have these up this week and they will be there as long as they last. She also has quite a few other bargains going on!!  Also give Toni and Al a hug for me!!

Happy Knitting!!

Carol Feller KAL and 18th Anniversary Lunar Celebration!

 Hello!!
It’s August which means it’s time to announce our Fall Knit-a-long with the lovely and talented Carol Feller!
Most of us are still in the grips of a pretty epic summer heat wave. However, you can smell an ever so light hint of Autumn in the air, especially in the mornings. And yesterday there was even some low lying fall by the river here in Scappoose. At first I thought it was smoke from all of the fires but nope it was some lovely misty fog!
This year Carol has designed a beautiful pullover for us! The perfect cozy everyday wear around the house or hiking in the woods or running errands or sitting by a campfire. It’s a beautiful design that looks like a fun knit which are my favorites!
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I think Tangential Blues is a beautiful and cozy addition to our winter wardrobes. A timeless pullover that is worked from the top down with raglan shoulder shaping, a delicate twisted stitch cable down the front and also down the sleeves. There’s a lovely gentle curve along the back hem created with short rows. Doesn’t it look cozy! And look how great it looks with jeans!! Also that ribbed yoke also makes a nice statement! I see this sweater looking good on so many of us! I just love the cable detail on the sleeves!
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Carol and I chose one of both of our favorite yarns Targhee Worsted for this design. If you have not worked with our Targhee yarns you are in for a treat. Once you cast on that first stitch you will be in love with the lofty goodness that is Targhee!!!
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Photo Credits: Joseph Feller
When you buy the pattern, Carol will send you a discount code from us good for 15% off our beloved Targhee Worsted.  Right now Carol is also offering a discount of 10% on the pattern! So double discount goodness!
If you have never been a part of one of Carol’s KAL I highly recommend it. I lover her designs and her editing is hands down some of the best in our industry. One of my favorite parts of Carol’s KAL experience is that she is right there with you. She has tutorial videos and is so engaged and responsive and just plain fun! If you need color guidance in choosing colors please do not hesitate to ask! info@bluemoonfiberarts.com
Something super special!!
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Moon Shadow!!!
I really wanted a special commemorative package of crafty color goodness to celebrate 18 years of being Blue Moon! And as I said at the beginning of the lunar eventful year of 2018 we were going to squeeze as much fun in as we could. We have with some great new lunar hues and quite a few specials and the birth of our color club!!!
This trio of dark moody green blue black wonder has my heart! It really does. I have so loved working on this! I get to team up with tow of my absolute fav creatives the lovely ladies of JaMPdx and Queen Bee Creations.
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It all started with an idea and a seriously sexy glaze color that Jenn and Meghan were playing with. I fell head over heals in love with it’s sultry green grey goodness. It might even replace pond scum as the color of mu heart. No wait… that can’t be. I do love it that much. And then Rebecca at Queen Bee just happened to have the perfect waxed canvas to go with so all we needed was a colorway!!!!!
So here is our Moon Shadow. I really wanted to do a Moon Shadow colorway for this year and I feel these hues just fit perfectly.  The bag is going to have an aqua stitched moon on it too!!!Because ya know! Blue Moon!
I know…so excited.
Okay so we will need to limit these so get in while you can. And since it not only involves dyeing but making and glazing mugs and sewing bags these are pre-orders. We will be doing a revolving shipping process and will have them out in batches on late August, September and October.
So you get a stunning moon mug, a great project bag and a skein of Socks that Rock Lightweight in our Moon Shadow colorway! ( and a small surprise in the bag!)
Happy Anniversary to us all!
Blue Moon would be absolutely nothing without every single one of you!!! I am so lucky and grateful and feel blessed to have been able to do what I love and serve such a lovely creative community of people!
Thank you so very much!!
Today is a new moon. It is a super new moon! So enjoy….

Total Lunar Eclipse Surprise 24 hour Special!

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It’s a Total Lunar Eclipse today!! It is the second one this year! It is the second Blood Moon Eclipse this year and the longest lunar eclipse this century!

Pretty powerful!

We are celebrating with a surprise 24 hour sale on ALL yarns! 15% off all day the 27th

The code to use is: totallunareclipse2

Since we are Blue Moon I feel like it is important to honor the moon in all of her celestial glory!! I made sure all of our moon colorways are up!

Happy Total Lunar Eclipse Blood Moon!!

Catching up!!

Okay it’s going to be a little hard, because I am over the moon excited but before I share all about our color club I am going to take care of a little order update business. Also there are some happenings that are just around the corner which is hard to believe but nonetheless true!

We got a little bogged down with orders and are doing our very best to get caught up which we almost are!! Thank you for your patience! As happens we had a mill order delay on our sock yarn which totally messes things up and stresses me out to no end! Added to that a bunch of my team were out sick, again.  I know… it does seem to be happening a lot.  I have a theory about this. Team Blue Moon is composed of a bunch of moms of young children right now. This is a new thing for many years  we were a team of women with grown children. Anyway I am thinking this explains the illnesses. I am probably over sharing here but I have been trying to figure out the why of all of the illness and wondering if maybe Columbia County had an issue of some sort. So  this is where we are. Where I believe we have fallen down on our usual good customer service is in communicating this to you and for that I apologize!! I am working on a new system where this is better.

I have noticed that some of your emails are not getting to us at info@bluemoonfiberarts.com  and maybe orders@bluemoonfiberarts.com and I am looking into this. One of the other things things that happens is that in our order system we have a way to go into your order and email you from there if there is an issue. In the past this has worked just fine but I am of thinking that some of these are not getting through. So we are also trouble shooting this.

I just want you to know that you are so very important to us and I am trying to figure out some of this technical communication road blocks. I am by far not a techie so… . While I sort through this you can always reach out to me at tina@bluemoonfiberarts.com

We shipped out a massive amount of yarn on Friday and the same will be true next week. Please know that I really appreciate your patience and feed back also!! You are why I do what I do!

Tits Collective yarn is part of what is shipping out!! We are still taking order if you want that colorway before the end of July! It is such a fun colorway to dye.Oh my goodness. I am spinning it too and it is so much fun to spin. So warm, bright and happy! Great color therapy spinning!

See….

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I am supposed to have a pound of this done by the end of Tour de Fleece but I do not thnk I am going to meet that goal. I am halfway there so… we’ll see.

For the 16 of you that are ever so patiently waiting for the Fair Isling on Blue Moon it is at the printers this coming week and the pdf is being formatted so.  Also lesson learned!! Check files yourself first!!! I am printing a bunch so once it is all done will put it back up for sale for those who are interested. All of this has given me an even more of an appreciation and respect for tech editors and layout. I am sorry this has been such a wait!

Around the corner is Stitches Midwest and the our annual Barn Sale and Dye Day!!!

The ever so lovely Theresa and Ron Miskin of The Bufflao Wool Company will have a bunch of our yarn. Here is the a link to the Market floor map so you can find them! They will have a bunch of new colorways that we do not even have up yet!! So if you are going be sure to stop by and say hi and check out the color, the yarn and  lovely samples!!

In the past 6 to8 months we have said a sad good bye to some of our LYS’s and also welcomed a few more to our team So do check out who and where our yarn is so you can see it in person and support these lovey yarn shops.

Wow that was quite a lot. I think I am going to put the color club info on the top banner so it will live there for awhile and also we can look at the lovely graphic that Maggie created for it!

I want you to know that I am so very grateful for each and everyone one of you and feel blessed that I can serve you in color and yarn. It has most definitely been a year of challenges.  I do see the light at the end of this tunnel so feel like we are just about over this hump. ( knock on wood)

Thank you all so very, very much for hanging in there with me!!  You are my rainbow!

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Short Run Special

Happy Saturday morning!!!

It’s a stunning day out already. The sun is peaking through the curtain and there is a lovely breeze which I hope lasts throughout the day, since I believe it is supposed to reach 95 today.

Today is my son and daughter-in-law’s 5th wedding anniversary!!! So we are celebrating which will be all kinds of fun. 5 years!! It feels like just yesterday that we were planning their wedding and at the same time like she has been part of our family forever!  So much love!!

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Aren’t they adorable!

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It has been a weird week here in Blue Moon land! You know those days where no matter which way you turn you are met with an obstacle? So for every step you try to take in order to do so you have to clear the pile of bricks in your way!! Yeah that.

Tuesday was madness. Went to bank where they were have trouble with their computer system so it took forever making me late for an appt. Went to USP where their computer system was down. Luckily I have a shipping system so I went back to Blue Moon and made the label and then later that afternoon took packages to PO where they were still having issues. Decided I should get gas since my tank was low and once filled it would not start. Yup!! New car too! It finally started and this is the 2nd time this has happened so I went right to Toyota where they said they needed to keep it. So they got me a rental or at least tried to. Twenty five minutes later after having no cars, then finding one (but not the key to go with it) and yet another computer issue and then a printer issue and wait there’s more, dropping the keys under the car ~ I left Broadway Toyota. I sat in the rental for a few seconds and decided I deserved a cool beverage. So went to McMennamins on 23rd and ordered my favorite cider and guess what? Yup they were out.

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Yeah! Now I know in the grand scheme of life (especially these days) that these are definitely first world problems and not life altering or damaging. It was pretty surreal though and towards then end just kind of hysterical!

I have my car back. They do not know what is wrong and want me to bring it back to them when the gas tank is low so they can go with me to see what happens. I kid you not!

Anyway that is how this week has been and finally I just decided to go with the flow because why fight it. Maybe mercury is like upside down retrograding or something.Whatever it is computer systems are not fairing well.

okay let’s talk yarn!

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Isn’t it pretty?!  It’s called TASY BOO!!  The TASY was the mills abbreviation for Tina’s Alpaca Sock Yarn. (60% Superwash Merino/30% Baby Alpaca/ 10% Nylon ) The Boo I have no idea about, maybe mill naming shenanigans which I totally get and am amused enough to keep the name.

Anyway… it’s quite a lovely yarn but just not one we want to introduce into our line-up right now so we are offering it to you as one of our summertime short runs! We probably have about 180 skeins so it will go pretty dang fast at 20.00 a skein!!  (and if you use your RSC discount even less than that).

It knits up as quite a lovely fabric at a DK weight so you can use it for garments, shawls, cowls… . Keep in mind though that the 30% Alpaca effects how the color looks. Alpaca mutes color a bit so a little lighter and dreamier is how I look at it. So very soft in feel and hue!

Okay onto some super fun knits.

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I was at Coastal Yarns at Canon Beach last weekend for a short visit and saw this stunning Rose Candy Cowl by Martina Behm in our A Total Eclipse of the Sun and Shadow. Look at those stripes!! Super sexy!! I love that design of this cowl anyway but especially with this lovely color.

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And look at this dynamic knit duo knit in our Plushy!! I think the colorway is Total Lunar Eclipse. I know I should know all my colorways on sight! I wish you could feel them. So flipping cozy!!

Bandana Cowl by Purl Soho

Graham Hat by Jennifer Adams

 

Okay my lovely knitters, crocheters, spinners, weavers… I am going to post this! Have a great weekend!

Be kind to yourselves and each other!

RSC members please remember your 20% moves to 15% on the 16th which is Monday!

Happy knitting!

Happy Summer!!!

Summer Solstice was this week so it is officially summer which is great since it was in the 90’s here. So…

I feel like we have all kinds of fun planned this summer so I am just going to tell you all about it in this post in an attempt to get my head around it all.

As we have done the past few summers we will be running weekly specials so do keep an eye out for the newsletters because they will have that information in them.

Starting today Yaksi Fingering and La Luna Fingering are 15% off until June 31st.  The coupon code you need for that is: birmingham18

Why have we chose those 2 yarns to put on special??

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Photo Credit: Nona Davenport

Birmingham by Nona Davenport

A stunningly diverse cowl!! Brioche creates such a stunning fabric and a cozy one too. I am smitten with Nona’s design and will probably knit a solid one in Yaksi  and a 2 color in La Luna. Oh my goodness what colors would you choose? Doesn’t this look like a fun knit?!

Also it would fit right into the other summer fun we have planned that actually starts today!!!

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Yes!!! BINGO! Single Skein Bingo.

All the single skeins! All the single skeins!

We wanted a Summer knit-a-long that was a little different. A KAL that had some challenges and gave us a little project freedom but also had continuity. And of course it needs to be fun!! I think we hit all those markers! We will run specials all summer to coincide with our Bingo fun. Nona’s cowl would qualify for brioche, and if brioche is a new skill for you that one, if Nona i a new designer to you then there’s that one and the the high contrast one also! So much fun!!! And the prizes aren’t to shabby either! So check it out!!!

Click on this link for all of the details!   BMFA Single Skein Bingo

And…if you purchase yarn for this project during the next 5 days we are donating 10% of ALL sales to RAICES  (The Refugee & Immigration Center for Education & Legal Services)  

It might not seem like a lot but I am a firm believer in ever little bit helps! Whatever little bit we can do to help reunite these families.  Thank you!

 

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Who’s going to Black Sheep this year?  We are !!!! We have not been for the past 3 years and I am pretty excited!  You can tell by all of the exclamation points. My good buddy Toni (of THE FOLD ) will be there with me. We have are bringing loads of yarn and spinning fiber! So if you are going to be there do look us up!  We are booth: 05 & 06

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What is happening in our RAV group?!

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There is still plenty of time to join in the spinning fun that is Tour de Fleece!!

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Maggie also has a Stripe FLASH KAL going if you are into stripes and honestly who is not? Anything with stripes for heat to toe!!

So very much and quite honestly that is not all of it!  Blue Moon will be represented at Stitches Midwest. The ever delightful Ron and Theresa Miskin of The Buffalo Wool Company will have a whole bunch or our yarns!! Yay!

Okay I am going to sign off now so I can feed and walk the dog and prep for dye class tomorrow!

I’ll still have openings if you’d like to have a colorful good time and learn to dye yarn and work with color!

Have a lovely weekend!!

It’s been a week….

So… I actually considered just rolling over in bed this morning and going back to sleep and not writing a blog post. It has been that kind of week.

We had a forest fire up here that was three miles away and consumed 50 acres before they got it contained. Scary!  ( Thank you to all of the fire people and forest service who battled this fire.)  One of our own beloved team members had a seizure at work which was also scary and challenging. She is fine now!!  And then my heart and thoughts have been heavy around the deaths of Kate Spade and Anthony Bourdain and all of us who battle with depression and mental illness. So…I changed my mind got out of bed, grabbed my laptop, made a cup of tea and here I am ready to share some thoughts on depression based on my own experience as a mental health care worker and a person who has lived with depression in my life. I have a scar on my wrist that is a constant reminder.

I believe one of the things that we are discovering as a society is that one of that the deadliest things is our SILENCE.  We are most definitely finding our voices. I certainly celebrate us speaking our truths and being who we authentically are and accepting each other as such.

As a survivor of sexual assault as a young woman ~ both physical and emotional abuse from both of my alcoholic parents ~ I know the tendency toward self blame and shame and what it does to your, heart, soul and psyche. I also know the absolute healing power of  finding my voice (conquering my fears) owning my truth and then, speaking it!

I know for myself and my struggles with depression that isolation makes everything worse and of course what do we all do?

We isolate ourselves.

We do not share.

We do not listen or see the signs in those around us. A part of that silence is due to the very nature of depression but a bigger part is the stigma our society has on mental health. There’s so much stigma around mental illness and specifically depression. Illness is illness no matter what it is or where it is in our bodies!

Life is chocked full of all kinds of highs and lows it’s the nature of the beast. Happiness is not the only state of being and certainly not one we all experience all the time. Any one of us can get stuck and in a low loop and have a hard time climbing out all by ourselves. Wouldn’t it be wonderful if everyone of felt safe and comfortable enough so that we could say, “hey, I think I’m in trouble here” and I could use some help. Imagine if we completely changed how we looked at mental illness and we saw it as we do say… heart disease or cancer even.

I’ve had both cancer and depression and I can say that I did not hesitate at all in getting help and treatment for cancer. However with depression I felt like somehow I was a failure, like I was letting those around me down and I was positive that I did not deserve to be here much less have help and lastly that everyone would be better off if I was no longer here. It took every ounce of courage I had to say ~ I need help!

I thought cancer was my hardest battle but it was not, depression was and is. There are all kinds of reasons for depression, types of depression and illnesses that depression is part of and… as there all kinds of ways to treat it.

In my opinion our first and biggest step is actually in the acceptance and then treatment of mental health/illness as we do all other parts of our health and well being.

Our world right now is kind of a hard place and I think we are all struggling a bit with finding light, hope, peace, joy, love and maybe just plain ol’ well being.

We need to take better care of each other!  What else is this all about?

We are in this together after all.

Rest in Peace Kate and Antony!  I am sorry we let you down. My hope is that we as a whole world will be moved towards change.

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One of the things in life that brings me joy is cooking. I love to cook! I also am curiously fascinated by our world and the cultural diversity it holds. He also taught me about respecting and honing my craft and not just in cooking but in being a dyer, yarn maker and  knitter. I will seriously miss Anthony Bourdain’s in that world. He most definitely it a better place and I hope he knew that on some level.

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It might seem like a small thing but tell those you love that they matter to you. You just never know what kind of power that holds.

Thanks for listening!

You most definitely matter to me!!

LOVE!

 

Post vacation musings

I took 7 whole days in a row off!! I know…. craziness!! It was so wonderful. I have been trying to take more time off and get away and do things I love to do that feed my heart and soul and my creativity. What better excuse than to take some time then a birthday! It was my 61st birthday on last Tuesday. So I spent with two of my best friends where they live, which just happens to be one of my favorite places on the planet. It was all kinds of loveliness. IMG_1448

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The weather was beautiful all sunny but not too warm which lead to lots of beach walks which are my favorite kind of walking. It was a full moon on my birthday so that meant the tides were super low. Low tide means lots of crazy cool tide pool action and seaweed beds and rocks and otters and herons and … . To say it is my happy place is an understatement. I feel the most me when I am near the ocean. I am rejuvenated ~ inspired ~ uplifted ~ relaxed ~ connected andjust plain ol’ happy!

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Birthday full moon!!

I might have a tiny little sea weed obsession.

I did say obsession!!

I am so fascinated by all the colors and textures and what is living in those beds. The colors in sea weed are some of my favorites with so much depth and richness. I also love those dry kind of dead hues. T And… those textures and patterns are crazy, so varied. Nature is the best lesson in diversity  that we have. What do you see in those textures? I see lace and cables and bobbles and brioche and fringes and on and on. One of my creative dreams is to design a series of colors and then the patterns to go with them. Might be the time to jump on this one! Look at all of this color and texture. Mother Nature is a flipping genius!

And while I was feeling so inspired look what I did.

I actually knit.

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La Luna DK and Lace in dye boo-boo’s) which will be my cowl for next winter.

I cast-on not one but two projects.  Scandalous!! I can’t tell you the last time that happened. I am a serious monogamous knitter it is one at a time for me or I feel overwhelmed and pressured and I have enough of that in my life. I do not need it from my knitting.

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Socks that Rock in the colorway I made for my birthday ~ “It’s my party and I’ll dye if I want to!” ~ I am making my self a pair of socks!

Afternoons on the deck sipping refreshing beverages, knitting, chatting and having just too much fun! Now I just have to find a way to keep that energy going while I am at home and  working. I get so bogged down in the everyday aspect of making a small business run that at the end of the day I am done. I often grab something to eat while answering emails with my favorite cooking shows are playing in the background and I often fall asleep on the couch as I am typing.

So this year I am working on more balance in my life.  How do you achieve  balance in your life? I feel like this is something Oprah knows! lol

Karen and I also sewed as we do when we are together. I am a slow mover on this one. Mostly fear of screwing it all up!!

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Karen is seriously a talented sewist and as you can see seriously committed to her craft! We made dresses!

So … an amazing birthday, good times with dear friends and a good reboot!!

I am back and getting into the swing of things.

THANK YOU ALL for all of the lovely birthday wishes!! You made my heart sing! I am so lucky to be part of such a community!

We are in the process of shipping May sock club! I think this one is going to be one of my favorites. Pattern pages are up. Dyer’s Notes will be there on Monday. The rest of the packages ship out on Monday also!

If you are planning on joining us in the School of Yarn 3rd semester please join soon as we have to order all of the goodies!

I am putting up new Dye Camp classes today . Is there anything you would like me to teach?!! I would like to change things up a bit and also would like to hear from you as to what you would like.

Oh and don’t forget to check out the Tour de Sock and Tour de Fleece action!

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So much knit and spinning fun with prizes, discounts, and crafting!!

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Our Tour de Sock 2018 colorway!  Registration for Tour de Sock started yesterday so now’s the time!! Knit socks and support a worthy cause all at the same time!

Okay my friends I need to move on to my next task!

Have a great weekend!!

Happy knitting!

Birthday Bash SALE!!!

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Well…time has done that thing that it does so very well and has flown by.  Next week is my birthday and since the whole ~ I made it through cancer thing ~ I am a firm believer in celebrating every single year I am here! So… my  lovely knitting friends this is what 61 years on the planet feels like to me in color on yarn!!

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“It’s my party and I’ll dye what I want to!”
It’s bright and happy and fun!!

All three things I am looking to add more of into my life this year!! It has speckles and droplets and then slashes of color through out with just enough white space to showcase it all!!  I am pretty tickle with it! I am balling up a skein to take with my to Port Townsend this weekend for my birthday vacation with my buddies and the ocean!! ( Excited!!)

We are also celebrating with a SALE!! 

All yarns and roving from this very moment until midnight Pacific time on the 30th will be 15% off!!!

You will need the following code to get the discount: tinasbdaybash18

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One of the best ever birthday presents is the release for this movie this weekend!! So excited!! And as promised! Your SOLO colorways! I started our Star Wars color tribute with the theme of this story since it is a prequel! It was a bit of a challenge. It’s truly not that easy to dye a skein of yarn to look like a space ship.

I have been trying to pick a favorite and I fluctuate between Chewie and the Falcon but also Lando… .  I love that little bit of bright yellow popping out of all of those darker saturated hues! Stay tuned for lots more Star Wars themed colorways.

Our contest winner are:  Alice, Karen, KT34, Leann and Kellie. We will be emailing you next week for address verification. Or if you like you can email us @info@bluemoonfiberarts.com

Okay so a few more things we have going!

Our fab new yarn Soft Rock is up!! I do love this yarn!

Soft Rock is a light fingering-weight 2 ply yarn made from the same fiber base that we use for our beloved Socks that Rock yarns! Our goal was a yarn that had a lot of the wonderful attributes of our signature sock yarn, but with a little less of a twist and a little more drape. Since our goal with Soft Rock is not a sock yarn, we can lighten up on the the twist of the ply which gives us a more relaxed yarn for shawls and cowls and such!! Soft Rock still has a nice elasticity and also rocks, just not for socks!!

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Tour de Sock starts on June first and we are part of that fun again this year! Yay!!! Here is our new colorway for this year.

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Tour de Sock 2018!!  There is a coupon code that for our sock yarns you will get when you sign up!! Check out all the info on their RAV group page!

We are also going to be participating in Tour de Fleece with a coupon code and all. Maggie is setting up a group.

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A few other things….

If you are waiting on an order it will ship early next week!

We will be shipping Sock Club at the end of next week! So if you have address changes please do let us know!

Sign-ups for School of Yarn are still open!!!

We will shipping off the Merino patches today or Tuesday for this last semester!

Okay so I know I have more but this is the most important and I now have a few more additions to my list before I can leave here.

I hope you all have a lovely weekend. Check out my instagram feed more ocean pics this weekend!

Rock rainbow

Rock rainbow