Thursday, May 28, 2009

dyepot--you're in timeout!

First batch of colorways went well today, second batch did not. Argh. As my stressbuster, I'm going to sit outside and try out my new Hiya Hiya circulars on Delphine, before I have to scurry into work. Am using my sport weight organic merino dyed in Huckleberry, which is so nice to knit. Smooth and silky. That should put me in a better mood.

Preparing for Sock Summit is a marathon, but as Thursday is my main dyeing day, it always feels like a frantic sprint. I probably need to pace myself better during the week so that I'm not so stressed out on Thursday.

Thursday, May 21, 2009


My friend Tawny of Baby Bean Designs is having a fiber party on Friday, and this is what I'm bringing:

This is Inked on Shooting Star merino. I always thought of this yarn as fingering, since I use size 2 needles with it, but then it was pointed out to me that the yardage was sort of sport-ish, at 355 yards per 4 oz skein. And I call my organic merino that's 372 yards/4 oz sport weight ... so for consistency I call Shooting Star a sport weight yarn. But in my head, it's still fingering.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

get your geek on!

My friend P. pointed out that when I get interested in something, I focus on it obsessively. Battlestar Galactica, the best TV series I've ever watched, is no exception. I was pretty much in mourning when the series ended in March.

Naturally, it ended up merging with my ongoing obsession with yarn. (Basically everything does, these days.) I started thinking about BSG colorways. Then about all the other great science fiction and fantasy stories out there.

But why geek alone? I picked a few friends who I suspected of similar tendencies, and invited them to stock my store with me.

Tomorrow morning, the collision of art and fandom goes live. A few examples:

Centurion (BSG)

Tribbles (Star Trek: TOS)

Mal's Browncoat (Firefly)

Team Edward (Twilight)

There were so many other ideas I had (Lorien from LOTR, Lyra's hat from The Golden Compass, Jayne's hat from Firefly, and my Coldfire colorway), but alas, just didn't have time. Hopefully I will the next go-around ...

Monday, May 18, 2009

playing around in the dye studio

One of my constant worries when I'm dyeing a custom order is how closely I'm matching the stock photo. I know that the nature of the hand-dyed beast is the variation among skeins, and I know that most of my customers know, too. I fret anyway.

Since January, basically all my dyeing has been for wholesale and co-op orders, so it's been a long time since I've been able to just dye without worrying about matching. I didn't realize how much this stress was affecting me until last night, when I dyed some of my sparkly vampire yarn (a superwash sock-weight yarn with actual silver spun into it) for this week's science fiction/fantasy stocking--official name: Out of This World. While I was working, I fretted about the purple dye that was turning blue at the edges, that was darker than I wanted, that wasn't like what I had pictured in my head, about the raspberry that I overdyed on two of the skeins ... until I realized that I liked it.

It felt so liberating to just go in and dye something and see what happens! I really love how the sparkly vampire yarn turned out, in particular. I've never read the Twilight series--my husband, who has actually watched the movie (unlike me), suggested the idea of dyeing shiny yarn. He gets bonus points for a great suggestion.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

let the Tour begin!

The Puget Sound LYS Tour begins tomorrow, and my Trillium merino is the featured yarn at Apple Yarns. Today I stopped by to take a photo.

Pretty awesome that what started off as a "sure, I'll knit some socks for you" three years ago has evolved into this. Andrea (the owner) asked if I had any more because she's thinking they might sell out, so I'm going to dye her up a bit more tomorrow.

Next up: my SF/fantasy-themed stocking next week (5/21). I have some sparkly sock yarn with actual silver spun into it to dye up in a Twilight-inspired colorway (apparently vampires sparkle in this series? so says my husband, who made it through the whole movie, unlike me), plus some Battlestar Galactica and possibly Lord of the Rings colorways to do. My friend Diane of Bugsnugger, June of Rising Sun Earthworks, and Denise of Zen Moon will be coming to my geeky little party. Time to celebrate our inner nerds!

Sunday, May 10, 2009

hitting the refresh button on my logo

I have looked at literally thousands of fonts, trying to find the new (type)face of Huckleberry Knits. I'm starting to think that the best idea is to just change my name to this font, Natalya Swashes:

You may simply refer to me as The Artist Formerly Known as Huckleberry Knits.

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Sock Summit vendor list is up!

And I'm on it! There are quite a few vendors whose work I'd love to see, having admired their yarns from afar. This is going to be so much fun!

I'm in the homestretch of my current wholesale order (which I am dropping off on Tuesday) and as soon as I'm finished, it's on to Sock Summit dyeing. I had been thinking anyway that I was going to bring non-sock yarns, and after having seen future shoppers comment that they were saving up their annual yarn budgets to blow at the Summit on all types of yarn, I definitely think this is the way to go.