Spinning for Feral Beginners

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Yarn Vampire sighting reported!

It is with both relief and disgust that I report a yarn vampire sighting. Yes, this morning, whilst shopping for beads at a local beadery, I was regaled with a yarn vampire story.

It warmed my heart to know that I am not the only victim of yarn vampiredom. On the other hand, the person telling the story was clearly as revolted as I at the occurrence.

Here's the latest in yv-dom:

Said friend, at a recent show, had the following encounter -- yes, a person, examining her yarn, said, "I will dissect (I believe that was the word) this yarn and copy it and sell mine like this when I get home." Or something like that.

Colleague reports being aghast, as well as nauseated, by the crassness of the comments and the sheer nerve of it all.

Me? I hoped, upon hearing the tale, that I hadn't cackled too loudly or too unsympathetically. After my knowing chuckle, I replied, yeah, I have a term for those people: Yarn Vampires. You can read my own encounters in an older blog entry if you like.

I likened the Y V's comments to going into a paint supply shop, buying tubes of paint and brushes, going home, painting a canvas, then wondering why their canvas doesn't resemble the other painters' they know. Ok, not the best analogy, but you get the drift.

I know I must have said, "if all we do is open up a jar of dye, dump it, and add yarn," then yes, anyone, including a monkey, can do it.

I don't think that is why my friend or I are successful at what we do.

Our customers see beautiful wool -- that's what they want. It isn't important to them how we do it, or for what reasons. If it meets their expectations and helps them make lovely things to wear and look at, then that's job done for me.

Listen up:

If you are a hand-dyer and you want to change what you are dyeing, or don't sell as much as yarn as you'd like, don't blame other hand-dyers or yarn businesses. Please.

I could tell every single person who asks what dye I use or what yarn I dye, but that isn't going to help either. If you have such little faith in your own skill or product, go do something else. Or go get the knowledge you need to improve. Maybe you are using a dye because that's what your first instructor used. Are they really YOUR colours that speak to you and what you want to sell? Maybe you need to change your dye method? The yarn you use?

Why are you dyeing yarn? Why do you want to sell yarn? Why should anyone buy your yarn? Maybe you are selling to the wrong customers?

Have you, Ms. Yarn Vampire, asked yourself any of those questions BEFORE you go for the obvious, most disastrous way out, which is to try to copy someone else's work? I should feel pity for you, but I'm sorry, I'm still working on disgust.

In the meantime, stay away from Stranded In Oz. I'll be packing my stake for the next show. And I know what you look like.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

spindle neglect

My poor spindle

Yes, the lovely little gemmie with which I've been spinning some Way Over the Rainbow coloured aussie wool top still lays idle while I work on designs. It's just too sad for words, but can't be helped I'm afraid.The only time I've had for spinning in August was while I was selling at the Sock Summit. I figured, well, I'm standing here selling top and yarn, I might as well show 'em what I got.

The nice part? Sold OUT of the organic merino top and yes, I wished I'd packed more of that and less of the regular. The regular is lovely, but the 19.5 micron wool just can't be topped -- har har har.I'm on my way soon to play at Beth's (my sister's) house, where her new lots of custom carded top await my inspection *laugh*. There's so much of it, I may just use the bales as a bed. It's all destined for the wools shows we're doing this autumn.

What I'm really looking forward to? My RUBY SLIPPERS top from Kate at Roclans. It's been stored at Beth's since April and I WANT IT! I need this wool. Really. And yes, it looks as it sounds, complete with red fiery angelina blended into Kate's amazing wool. Wheeeeeeeeeeee!Back to the design files.

Spin something nice. M

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Wow -- how kewl

Whilst the Sock Summit was clearly dominated by the knitters, the spinners certainly came to hang out. And man, did I have a ringside seat. 2 doors down from me? Carolina Fibers. Oh yes, Morgaine and company were demonstrating their wheels and tempting me every moment with their ample display of lovely drop spindles. OMG.
Then, in front of me to the left? The Fold, from Illinois. The proprietor came by, had a chat, touched some SIOz yarn and fibre -- and no, she did not leave empty-handed! Once you've had Australian 19 micron merino, you never go back baby.

Every spinning vendor I met was ACE! Did I mention Crown Mountain Farms over towards the right? They're lovely people tooooooo!

Around the corner, more spinner supply companies and NO! I didn't get a chance to peruse it all. Maddeningly close and no time to play.

Can't complain as I was busy and enjoying my customers. Sold fibre and spindles to new spinners. Can't wait to see what they make!

And no, I never NOT miss my hubby, pooch, and my ace friends in Adelaide, but the change of scene does me good. As the dust settles, I promise to post some updated pictures for spinners.