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are you cooking or taking out?

I am a little sick of cooking 2-3 meals a day. How about you?

I wanted to share with you some favorite meals that I’ve made the last few weeks.

salmon cake on a mesclun salad and roasted beets
Mother’s Day Brunch of sweet potato hash poached eggs with hollandaise and sugar glazed bacon
Chili cheddar frittata with hash brown crust and mesclun salad with avocado and artichoke hearts

In this time, I am wanting to keep up my healthy eating habits, but it’s hard. I’ve always used food as a reward and I feel like I need a reward, for sure!! And let’s face it, there isn’t much else to reward us with, like a massage or a pedicure. Of course there is always online shopping as a reward, right? If you feel like you need a non-food reward, click here to pick up a skein, some roving or a kit or a set of napkins or tea towels.

Polwarth Silk Roving
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Fun idea for shawl complete with shawl pin

I’ve been going through my newer yarns and curating more Shawl Triads. I know many of you love to have a set of curated yarn that will match and be exciting for a shawl or even for a knitted tank top. Here is my latest set (sh13). It’s all Sparkly yarn. The colors are (left to right): Moody Blues, Four Corners and Azure.

Sparkly Shawl Triads sh13

And while preparing for the next Fiber Art Studio Tour which will be virtual. I’ve been talking to Anne Paynter Hill. I love her fused glass buttons, earrings and shawl pins. I have to tell you, I’ve invested a lot into her really unique items. They are so colorful and sparkly and make me so happy. Look at this Shawl Pin. Wouldn’t it look great with a shawl made with these 3 skeins? I totally think so. You can find this pin here. Her shawl pins are magnetic, so they don’t injure your shawl.

Let me know what you think!!

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almost viral

WOW! I was blown away the last couple of weeks with pre-orders and dye to orders during the MD Sheep and Wool Virtual show. I was so worried that I was the weird one, the almost blasphemous one. To have a colorway inspired by the Corvid Pandemic, was a crazy idea…it’s not sweet, it’s not “nice”. And yet, it resonated with so many people.

Corona colorway

So I’m keeping the listing alive. It is still dyed to order, because I just don’t know how many people want to have some “souvenir” of this time.

Antibody Colorway

With dyed to order, I will continue to dye daily. You may get your order quickly because I happen to have some already dyeing. Or you may have to wait up to a week (with dyeing, drying and priority mail).

Find the yarn page here.

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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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color inspiration in a book

Palette Perfect by Lauren Wager is a book all about color. It’s really more of a lookbook. I think it took me less than 30 minutes to read, but I have spent a long time studying the palettes that Lauren has put together.

The book concentrates on the moods of your life. Colors that represent those emotions and moods. She then makes palettes of 3-5 colors that represent the mood.

She presents 15 different emotions such as tranquility, curiosity and trendy. Within each chapter she gives images such as paintings, photographs and textiles. Each of these has a “color wheel” of colors shown in that image. The size of the pieces of the wheel represent the amount of color in that image. And then for each color she gives the CMYK percentages and the RBG percentages.

CMYK is used for printed materials. Dyeing can use the CMYK numbers too. But the numbers aren’t a direct % of each color, as the numbers add up to more than 100. But lets say that if the number is 14/0/35/80 You would have a color that is mostly black with about half as much yellow, no magenta and a small amount of cyan. So the color is a deep green color. If you aren’t a math nerd, that’s OK.

I love this book for it’s pure inspiration. Looking through it you can find some combinations that you may not have thought about before. Get yourself a copy here on Amazon. This is just a link, I haven’t received a fee for reviewing or promoting this book. It is merely a good book for those who want to hone their color sense and widen their creative use of color.

If you’ve always wanted to learn to dye, I’m working on a dyeing ecourse that is almost ready to be released in the world. You can find out more here .

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viral colorways on sparkly yarn

I’m loving these colorways and so I’m making them in many of my fingering weight colorways. Our Sparkly yarn is 92% Superwash Merino and 8% Lurex (the man-made sparkly factor). There are 414 yards in each 4oz skein.

Here is the yarn in Sparkly:

Corona Colorway

You can grab these here. I’m dyeing to order and will let you know when to expect your yarn.

Antibody Colorway

Think you want to make a shawl with these? Here are a few suggestions:

Road Trip shawl

Free Your Fade

Jacinta Shawl

Rainbow Wings

Of course there are more than 5000 shawls on Ravelry using this amount of yardage. These are just a few I thought might work well.

Happy Knitting!!

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question answered: how did I get myself into this

I was asked this question on Instagram and I promised to answer it. So here goes… I’m not from a farming family at all. But really my maternal grandfather was a citrus rancher around the time of the Depression. And my paternal grandfather was a subsistence farmer in N. Carolina. And my Bill’s maternal grandparents were farmers in the Poconos and he has lots of great memories about growing up harvesting and canning vegetables. So maybe our farming roots really do run deep.

Really early FGF dyeing

I grew up in S. California and worked in healthcare and travel and loan origination and apartment owner until I met Bill in the early 90’s. Also during that time, I learned how to weave and dye and began my creative journey in the textile world.

We moved from California to Oregon and then on to Maryland. And when we came here, I told Bill that I would love to have a little farm with goats and chickens. Little did I know that he had always wanted to have a small farm as well. So we did just that.

Our first 2 goats: Winter and Inkblob

So remember I’m a weaver, spinner, dyer and cat owner. I didn’t know anything about goats. But I liked how Angoras looked. So one day at the Howard County Fair I found a set of goat for sale. Our thinking was that we would just get 2 and we would see how we liked having them. We got a small Amish building that served as a barn and fenced in our large lawn for them. I thought that I would just have some fiber to spin and I could weave with it.

I love this photo!

Soon we were buried under lots of pounds of fleeces and I realized that there was no way I could keep up. I had to send them out to be made into roving and yarn. And from there the business of making farm yarns and dyeing them and commercial yarns has grown and grown.

Our first two sheep: BFL named Puck and Cormo named Viola

Thanks Kyle for asking the question. Do you have a question? Add it to the comments and I promise to answer them in the future.

Just the beginning of the FGF yarn business
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books I’m reading: True Colors

I don’t really know how I found this book. I bought it for myself and added it to the mastery books I plan to read this year.

This book is fun to dip into. You don’t need to read from front to back. Each “chapter” is devoted to a master dyer. There are indigo dyers and cochineal dyers. There are dyers from every continent, except Antarctica, of course. There is a loose organization by dye type, for example there are several dyers profiled who work with Indigo in various parts of the world. I’m enjoying reading about how these dyers learned their craft. The stories of family and of place.

The photographs are wonderful. It truly is a coffee table book. And it is well written and interesting.

This book has made me think about mastery. Some like those dyers in the story learned their skills and mastered them within the confines of their cultures and families. My journey to mastery has been much different. My expertise has developed through years and years of practice. Lots of great results and also heartbreaking failures as well.

As you know I’m working on some online ecourses to help you on your way to learn dyeing techniques so that you can get the yarn that you dream of. You can be first to be able to enroll if you are on the Learn with Lisa email list. Click here to sign up.

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working on new online dye workshop

Hey, due to these stay at home orders, I’m taking my really popular dye workshop into the cybersphere. I’m working on a 4 week workshop that will lead you to dyeing the yarn that you envision. We’ll go from inspiration to finished product.

Are you interested in being the first to know about it? Join this email list and I’ll keep you in the loop as I work through the lessons and figure out how to get the supplies to you.

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march is national craft month

Did you know that March is National Craft Month? It is our month to shine. So let your craft flag fly!!

What will you make this month?

What will you learn this month?

indigo class

I have lots of dyeing plans and knitting plans. And I’m designing a new shawl, it’s in the works!

Reply to this blog and let me know how you will celebrate National Craft Month!