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FO Friday–Rhinebeck Style

So yes! This is the fastest sweater I’ve ever knitted. And I owed it to all the accountability partners that I had. But sharing my progress on my Facebook Live Thursday shows (1pm), really helped. I had to show you progress. That means I had to make progress. So you know what? It got done.

Iounn Pattern from Knitty. Made with handspun handdyed 3 ply lambswool yarn

I’m ready to cast on another one!! I’ll be swatching with some naturally colored yarns and the Shifty sweater pattern. I want to steek it and of course my yarns are thicker than what is called for… I simply can not do something by the actual recipe. I’m looking forward to more accountability too.

Do you need an accountability partner? Call on me. I’ll show up for you!!

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Fiber Art Studio Virtual Tour Tomorrow

What to expect:

  • Pattern “Ticket to Anywhere” will drop Saturday morning. You can get a code for a free pattern, when you buy a 5 skein mini pack from any of our vendors.  Coupon must be redeemed by 11:59pm Monday 6/8.
Ticket to Anywhere Shawl by Kristen Jancuk
5 skein Mini packs available to make Ticket to Anywhere
  • Prizes will be given out throughout the day. You just need to be in the group, watching and commenting. If you aren’t on Facebook, you can engage in the Ravelry group. We will be giving out prizes there too.
  • The group will have a watch party on Sunday. So you can see videos from our vendors if you missed them on Saturday, or if you just want to get a dose of cute animals, beautiful yarn and wonderful yarnie accessories, creams and spinning equipment. 
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9 days until the Fiber Art Studio Virtual Tour

June 6th will make our 4th annual FAST tour. This is our first year as a virtual show. So what does it mean to be virtual? Well, we are having a “show” on Facebook in our group. Click here to join. During the show hours we will be posting live videos from each vendor. It will be like going from booth to booth in real life, only you get to be in your PJ’s, sitting on your couch, drinking your prefered beverage. You don’t have to carry anything around. You can sit back and have the packages delivered by your friendly USPS carrier.

Just as in years passed, we will have a featured shawl and you can collect mini’s for it. The shawl will take ten 100yd skeins. So we asked each vendor to have sets of 5 minis. So you can buy from more than one vendor, just like before to have a souvenir type shawl, but not get hit with a lot of shipping fees.

The shawl is called “Ticket to Anywhere”. I don’t know about you, but I really want to get a ticket to somewhere, right? The color theme this year was **Neutrals with a pop of color**. So I made a gradient of 4 grayish, brownish spreckled minis. I made 5 different “pops”. So there is *Greek Isles (blue), *Mexico (gold), *Morocco (magenta), *Juneau (salmon) and *Caribbean (turquoise). My wanderlust got the better of me when thinking about the names and colors of these pops. I decided to give you another choice too. You can choose a pop in Sparkly or a pop in the Corrie Sock base. When you purchase a set of minis you will receive a discount code for the pattern. You can get these here. I will be dyeing these to order, fresh yarn just for you.

And just like in years passed, there will be prizes given out throughout the day. So I hope you join our group and visit with us in 9 days.

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fiber farmer in the time of corvid

First of all, I want to thank all the wonderful knitters, crocheters, spinners and felters who are coming to our online store and finding just the right yarn or roving to express their colorful selves. I hope you are feeling your creativity fill up and overflow. As we are all slowing down, getting out of the traffic, having more time to explore, to take more walks and to play more games or solve more puzzles with our families, it is also time to let our creative juices going.

We have hand dyed roving, yarn and farm yarns from our own fiber flock

This coming weekend, Maryland Sheep and Wool will be managing a virtual marketplace where there are hundreds of vendors. We will be online to answer questions and to fulfill your orders. AND you can also be looking at what we all have to offer right now. Here is the link to our online store.

I just had to do it. Corona is gold/cherry/grey, Antibody is purple/green/spreckles and Vaccine is orange/red and grey

Many of us are offering discounts and free shipping, some are offering special extras in your bag too.

What do you need to do? You need to be a member of the online community. Find it here. You also need to look at this page….the posts will not come through your own feed.

Have a question? Just ask it and one of us there will be able to help you by answering. So see you there! Have a question now? Just reply to this blog and I’ll find you an answer!

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sometimes I get wild ideas

So, dear reader, you already know that all the yarn shops are closed. The restaurants are closed. The fiber festivals are closed and going virtual. There aren’t any sports. And our homes are now our offices and schools.

I always do a special colorway for large festivals. And Maryland Sheep and Wool is in 2 weeks. I had to get up off the couch and put together a special colorway.

My wild idea was to make a corona virus colorway. But then I thought, Lisa that’s really weird. Maybe people will be upset or put off about it.

Corona colorway on Chinook

Then I thought some more. I relied on my Biology Major background and thought about viruses. And it lead me to think about how miraculous our bodies are. How our bodies make antibody particles that basically neutralize the virus or bacteria that has invaded the body.

So my corona colorway uses the colors in the electron microscope image that we see online and on the news every day. And my antibody colorway uses complementary colors that “neutralize” the virus colors.

Antibody Colorway on Chinook base

I’m taking pre-orders for these. I am offering them in the Chinook base, Corrie Sock base and Sparkly base. Click here to grab a few for yourself and gifts for your knitting friends. I will be dyeing these to order. I will keep you in the know about when you can expect them. I expect to be able to dye and dry within 3 days of your order, then out in priority mail so from the date of your order you should have this yarn in your hands in one week.

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virtual fiber festivals

Have you heard? At least the Spring and Summer festivals and tours will be a virtual experience. This is a whole new world for vendors, festival organizers and you, the public. There have been a couple of these so far. And it is really a learning experience. This is what I know to help you have a good experience for Maryland Sheep and Wool Festival and my own Fiber Art Studio Tour.

  1. The “festivals” will be held in special facebook groups. Here’s link for MDSW. Here is the link for FAST. Join these groups. You need to be checking on the posts in these groups. Any news, video or discounts won’t just come to your feed. So when you are ready just enter facebook and click on the group.
  2. Many, many vendors will be having special discounts and/or free shipping. The information will be listed during the virtual event. You can also just look at a vendor’s website as well. I will be offering 15% off your entire purchase AND free shipping on orders over $100. Those of you who are on my email list, will be getting the code early for pre-ordering. You can go here to sign up to be on the list.
  3. Many vendors have been making videos so that you can see for yourself what is available. I have a youtube channel where I’ve posted the complete colorways for each base. You can go here to see them.
  4. Many of us yarnies will continue to have a special colorway for the event. Stay tuned. I’m working on mine this week for MDSW.

So I hope you come out and “see” us at the new virtual fiber festival experience!

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Canceled Festivals? No problem

We just found out this week that Maryland Sheep and Wool Festival is not going to be held. This is the first time in it’s 47 years that it is being canceled. The first shows of the year, Fibernate and HomeSpun Yarn Party are also canceled. It’s hard to put into words just how I feel. On the one hand, I’m glad that we are taking Covid 19 seriously. I am glad that by canceling we are putting our neighbor’s health on par with our own. I’m sad to not be seeing all the wonderful knitting and crocheting and spinning and felting that you have done since the last time we saw you. I’m sad to not be able to see the excitement in your eyes as you think about a new project you could make with my hand dyed yarn or roving.

This is a time for a pivot. Especially if you have bought yarn or roving from me in the past. You know what to expect with my yarn. So the pivot will be that you will start to buy online.

I’m still here for you to ask questions. I’m here to take you (on your phone or ipad) into the studio and help you pick out the yarn you want to buy. I’m here to package it up and get it in the mail to you. I have been uploading virtual yarn shop videos to my YouTube channel all week, so you can hear about the yarn and see the colors I currently have. You can access them here.

BFL roving in Raisin Colorway

This weekend, Sunday specifically, we are trying a new experiment. During the hours that HomeSpun Yarn Party would be held, we will be having a virtual yarn party. From 12 to 5pm, we will have a special sales code for 15% off and any order over $100 will have free shipping. Anyone who buys during that time, will also be entered in door prize giveaways from the team at HomeSpun Yarn party. You can get the secret code in 2 ways: join my email list here in the popup window and I will be sending out a blast Sunday morning with the code OR tune into the HomeSpunYarnParty facebook group here on Sunday from 12-5. This is the first time we are trying a group virtual festival, so we’d love to see this work well for you.

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have you been out?

How are you feeling? I have to say that I’m feeling a little lonely. I always work from home. And I haven’t felt lonely before. I have an advantage of being an introvert, so no people doesn’t really get to me. But it is getting to me. I went out today. I took orders to the post office. It was empty. Downtown Frederick was empty. The Common Market was limiting people entering so there weren’t a lot of people in the produce section. I had my wipes with me. I had my own bags. The cashier was wearing gloves. It’s the new normal.

When I got home I found out that MD Sheep and Wool has been cancelled and that was just a punch in the gut. All the work I’ve been doing to increase my inventory is for naught. The optimist inside me says “It’s not for naught!! People need yarn. They will want to have happy colors of yarn delivered right to their doors.

To help my people find those happy colors, I’m doing daily Instagram and FaceBook stories about the yarn. You can see the colors up close and personal there or on my You Tube Channel here. So far I’ve uploaded sessions of our Chinook yarn, Alto yarn and Sparkly yarn.

So to say it again. You can come by and shop in alone or in a small group. Or you can arrange a Face time call and we can look at the yarn together. And lastly, you can watch my videos and then go directly to the shop and get it delivered to your door quickly.

Reply and tell me how you are dealing and how you are coping with the new normal.

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Virtual Studio Tour

Now that we are living in the time of Coronavirus, it’s time to think outside the box. You, our talented and creative customers, buy from us at fiber festivals. They are big! There are more than 50 people. And now that we are all limited and advised to stay at home and safe from exposure to the virus, we need to get yarn to you in a new way.

First of all, if you are local, you can always make an appointment to come and shop. Our space is clean. We are out in the country. The surfaces that you touch will be cleaned before and after your visit. Just shoot me an email and we can decide on a time.

If you aren’t local, we can still get yarn to you. If you would like your own personal tour, you can make an appointment for a face time call. We can go to the studio and you can see the yarn you need and ask any questions that you have about quantity, texture, patterns, all of that.

Sparkly yarn

Or you can just go to our web store HERE. You can explore the yarn and kits and roving that I have in stock.

In order for you to get to know our yarn better, I’m making a video everyday that highlights one of our yarns in all the colorways that are currently available. I did the first one today. You can find it by clicking HERE. If you subscribe to my YouTube channel you will be notified each time a new video is uploaded. You can also see these each day in my Instagram and FaceBook stories.

Yarn for Conflagration kit

It’s a perfect time to use our isolation to make beautiful, creative projects, to take a walk in the woods and to spend quality time with our families.

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knitting as self care

I did jump right in to do that dyeing. BUT…

This afternoon, I decided to put my feet up and take out my current shawl knitting and to take a little down time in order to rejuvenate myself. Why does knitting help me to rejuvenate? I can be moving my hands, but my head can clear a bit. I can focus on the stitches and the pattern, and I don’t have to focus on my to-do list or all the “shoulds” in my head. The repetitive nature of knitting has been well documented to help people get into a meditative state. And it certainly does help me to reach a quiet, peaceful place in my life.

So I can finish listening to a podcast or a TV program and emerge with a clear and peaceful mind, ready to take on the rest of my day.

When you need some down time, what do you do?