Tuesday, November 29, 2011

New Dye Progression Follow Up

Hello All,

Here is the shawl made with the last progression dye that I showed you.  This was knit by my friend "Nannette the Nanny".

 Dosen't she do fantastic work......

 The progression itself turned out very well.  I'm happy with the amount of each color and how they slowly melt into the next one.  She was happy with the color changes and the "Folk Art" colorway.

I'm REALLY looking forward to wearing this.  Thanks again to Nannette.  I look forward to sending her more to "test knit" for me.  I've sent her a teal grey and black progression for all of her work.  I hope to be able to show off some pictures of what she makes for herself soon.

Hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving.


Saturday, November 19, 2011

NEW Color Progression Dyeing!!

Hi All!

Remember the warping board?  Well this is the first of many new progressions to be skeined up on the New Warping Board!!

I have called the colorway "Folk Art".  My monitor shows pretty well the color changes.  I even like the color accuracy.

This cupcake will be sent to that friend Nanette, let's see what she says about the yarn and the dye job!!  This is 800 yards of fingering/sock weigh yarn.  It is a Superwash Merino/Cashmere/Nylon mix.  It is the base of our Saunderstown line.  See the shop for other colors.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Look What I Made!!!

Hi All!

I met the most wonderful woman during the KDO Marketplace the beginning of September. Her name is Nanette, she is strong, intelligent and funny. She also was looking for someone to dye yarn in long progressions. Well I had seen them and have a friend who dyes them but I had never, myself, tried to dye them. So after a great conversation with my new friend, Nanette, I decided that this was my next endeavor. So when I got home I set about purchasing the raw materials for my new warping board. I made it all myself. So very proud, can't you tell.

This is gonna make some VERY cool, dye progressions!! More to come!!!!!

Feed your fiber fetish

With a small amount of help from my eldest son, Hayden, who cut the boards and the dowels for me. That table saw really makes me nervous.......

Monday, August 1, 2011

Have Wheel Will Travel

Hi all,

OK, so I am on vacation in Swan Lake, Maine, just outside of Belfast. Yes, I know this is unusual, but I HAVE to take some time off or I am going to burn out like a sparkler on Fourth of July. This is the perfect place to recharge my batteries. Wow what a beautiful lake.... So quiet and so much to do. Canoe, kayak, fish, hike..... We would be doing more of this hiking if Loving Hubby had not ruputured his achilles tendon and is now waiting of surgery (it will happen the Monday we get back). But this is where I will be spending my time spinning for the next week. Tough huh???

Here we see my lovely and loved Louet S10 waiting to be used on the upper deck. Horrible view huh? I plan on spinning ata least a pound while I am here. I have brought with me different fibers that were not lucky enough to be purchased. Their loss is my gain.

Here is the first four ounces of my Beach Horizon which is a Superwash Merino. Sorta fits for the location...... I have a full eight ounces of this that when unsold, so I am going to spin them and then try my hand at plying. Should be fun.
Pretty huh? I'll check in with more photos of the spinning and mabie of me in the Kayak.

Hope you all have a wonderful day and I'll be back soon.


Monday, June 6, 2011

Merino Masterpieces!

Hello All!

The June Pryce Fiber Arts Dye Class Saturday was great fun. Wish you were here. Wonderful weather and wonderful people. It was a very small class. Just two students and myself. We touched on all the important aspects of dyeing Merino. Temperature, wetting, handling, applying dye and the steaming.

Here is Karen moving her wet roving from the bath to her work surface. So very glamorous with her glasses. It was very bright, you needed them!!

Here is Robyn working with her roving. Asking it nicely to let the water go and come get some color.

Here is the first batch. Karen's, mine and then Robyn's on the right. All wrapped up nice and snug awaiting their turn in the steamer. 35 minutes and then let stand until up to room temp.
What shall we do while we wait?

Time for questions.........

And to get a little bit of sun. What a gorgeous day!!!

How about some lunch? After a morning of intense study and work on their masterpieces my fun and sweet students are hungry. Ooohhh yum! Gotta love eating outside, it gets the creative juices flowing. The wine didn't hurt either......

Back to work, time to spin the water out of the rovings and see how our colors came out.

So industrious...... Careful don't squeeze too hard.....

Look what we did! This is Robyn's. She used Gold, Brown and a Burnt Orange. Isn't it great!

This is Karen's. Strawberry, Purple and a Blue Azure that mixed nicely together and this is what she came up with. Cool huh? The blue bin is the "Kit" that they were given. Inside was the undyed roving, three bottles for dye (they picked the colors) some gloves, the instructions and a few other special "tools" plus they got this cool bin that had a tight lid.

Overall I am very happy with the way it went. Fun and informative with great weather. It is all I could have asked for.

If you are interested and would like to be notified when we have another class feel free to e-mail me.

Heres hoping all of your days are colorful.

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Time for the Dye Class is Almost Here!

Hello all!

It is just about time for the first Dye Class of the season! I'm so excited. I love working outside but rarely get the chance. My work room fits one person perfectly, so when I teach the art of dyeing I have to move the work space outside!

This is the side yard where the tables will be set up. It's semi-shade so no one will get a sunburn while working on their Merino Masterpieces.

In that side garden are a few "friends" who will watch from the safety of the weeds.

I even used this as a chance to replace some of the chairs. Great color, huh? I purchased three of them and after my eldest kid put them together, I found out that they are collapsible! Score! These babies will not sit out in the snow this winter!! If I had thought about it I would have repainted the deck a better color. But I'll have to wait until later in the season when we move the hot tub. (thats that blue thing in the left hand corner)

When we take a break to steam our first batch, I'm planning lunch out in the back lounge area. Comfy seats and some shade. It will be swept by then and have some fresh flowers in the jug....

Lunch is going to be what my family calls a "French Nosh". Sliced grilled chicken, grapes, dried apricots, Brie and bleu cheese, baguette, cut veggies and this great Kabota Fig Preserve. Plus cold lemonade and the necessary bottle of chilled Chardonney for any one who is interested. Hey, what-ever gets your creative juices flowing.......

I was hoping to get a few more rings on the fire pit - each year I add a couple. But time is running out. They will get on but the girls won't get a chance to see it. It is going to be way too warm for a fire anyway!

The dog is Lego, he will be locked in my room. He looks all cute and cuddly but he is a man eater. I don't want him eating any of my students.

Oh yea the class. Everyone is going home with their own "Dye at Home" Kit. Its a plastic box that has a locking top. For those chefs out there its a blue "fish tub". Inside are Merino buns, the handouts, some small bottles of dye, gloves, and a small bottle of vinegar. It will also give them a way to carry home the wet rovings. No matter how long we spin them they are still going to be damp when they leave. Everyone will have a chance to dye their 8 ounces of merino but I'll also have some other fibers to try out!

What FUN!!! I know you wish you could be here. Next class I'll make sure you all know about it.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

And What are you Wearing......?

Hello All!
I have been experienceing a wee bit of split personallity disorder lately. You see when I go to work at my "Day Job" I have to dress in regular office standard. No Jeans....No high sandals....no boobs falling out of your shirt.........You know, the "standard".

Well where I work at my "Night Job" I'm allowed to be a bit more relaxed.......

Here I am getting ready for my preferred job. You can see right off the required glass of wine. No wait, actually its the comfortable shoes that are required. OK OK, I know I sound old and I guess I am but I couldn't do half as much as I do in that workroom without those Klogs. A throwback from when I cooked (food) these shoes ROCK!!!!! No slippage, rubber (no splatter worries here), and com..fort..a...ble. Can't beat them. The pants are sweats, now don't get the wrong idea, I'm not working from home to be a slob. But in some circumstances you need to protect your nice clothes and wear a...... a...... ...a....uniform of sorts. The splatter dosen't happen offen, but when it does it is usually the bottom falling out of one of the dye jars. Ohhh, that stuff goes everywhere. The heat and cool weakens all of the glass, so you gotta expect it. Then there is "The Climb". My workroom is in the basement, the stovetop and steamer are in the kitchen, on the first floor. My hot pads can simmer water but that's about it. Great for mixing dye but dosen't work when heat setting the dye. So On a good day, up and down I go, often.

I look happy and ready to go right? As you see my Apron is KEY!!! My Sister Jenn purchased it from Magickal Stitches on Etsy. What a creation. I love this thing! Gorgeous colors and then it has, like, this vinyl coating. Sorta like the outer covering on a picnic table cloth. Fuzzy inside but impervious to spills on the outside.

Now remember this is the BASEMENT we are talking about. During the winter it rocked! The wood stove and my "warming" room is down there. But during the Spring-Summer it is butt cold. All of the cool winter/spring air left in the house is settling down into the natural air conditioner. Mid-Summer I will be regaleing you with the bonuses of having your work space in the basement, but for now I'm dealing with frost bite. So I have to put on multiple layers. A sports bra - remember the stair climbing! - a comfy shirt - willing or already splatt kissed - and either a sweater or a demin overshirt. this keeps off the chill and allows me to continue to function as my core temperature plummets........... Ok that was my ploy to darling hubby for a space heater, ignore me.....Back on track.

We are getting close to the top. Funky earings. Yes, I dress like a scrub for work but I can still express my unique/moodiness with my jewelry. Yes well..earrings really anything else gets in the way. These are also earings that I LOVE but am too chicken to got out in public with them on. They inspire me. Different earings give me different attitudes......Different works of art. Sometimes I'll wear the latest shawl pin that I'm in love with. I play with fimo too. But that is for another day.

Well, I hope this gives you a small glimpse into who I am and makes you smile.

"Don't cry because it is over, smile because it happened."
-Dr. Seuss

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Here's Romney!!!

Hello All,

I have got to shout about the latest fiber I've been working with! Romney! Man if you haven't tried it yet, you really have to. If you'er a spinner who loves Merino you will LOVE Romney.

I just dyed 8 ounces in these great peaches, and berry colors and it is wonderful to work with. It is sort of a cross between the fineness of Merino and the workablility of the BFL. It feels like merino, but big puffy merino. It drank the soak water up thirstily, alot like a BFL.

It took in the dye easily and was willing to let it be moved into position. It dryed like an alpaca, a stringy nothingness while wet but springy, fluffy, cloud down when dry.

To all of you spinners who have yet to try this mana from heaven I highly recommend it. Dyers this is definately a fiber to check out!!


Saturday, May 14, 2011

What A Weekend!

Hello All!

We made it thru another weekend at the Maryland Sheep and Wool Festival. I just love going. I met some extraordinary people, Laurie and her daughter, Rem, Ellen and Marge. All of whom asked as their second question - do you have a Ravelry name? We sat in the shade, all strangers, sharing our fiber finds, knitting mishaps and upcoming projects. Such wonderful open people -the sisterhood of the wool.

The crowds, the classes, the food, THE FIBER! It was everywhere you looked. After my fiber diet, I was starved and can honestly say I went a bit nuts. Binged, would be the correct parlayance.

My trip down was bad, 6 hours in a Buick Park Avenue (OLD ONE) with no radio. Yup that is what I said, no radio, no CD, no cassette tape, no nothing!!! I spent the entire time talking or singing to myself. Thank god, most of the people passing me probably thought I was on the phone. Oh yes, and pass me they did, you see because to get the best gas mileage on such a long trip, I was required to go no faster that 70 mph. So there I am, grey haired, sunglasses, trying to see over the wheel (because the seat goes back to the lowest setting after about and hour and you have to re-set it) griping the wheel ( because this huge car floats all over the road), with a spinning wheeel and bags of fiber strapped in the back seat like precious children, talking to myself. Oh yes, I was quite a sight.

We went, like last year, with a group of like minded women, 6 total. That is an experience in itself. The weather was perfect. Not too hot, not too cold. Definately not the steam bath of last year. I took two classes. One with Maggie Casey on Making My Old Wheel Do New Tricks, and any one who read this knows that this is my new wheel and any tricks I could learn would help!
I learned tons!!! What a wonderful lady. I know all sorts of things to tweak on my wheel to get it to make the yarns I'm going for. I evenspun some thin stuff! I was the only one in the class interested in fat singles. Most of the other women were working on fine, cobwebby stuff.

My Second class (on Sunday) was with Jacey Boggs and was Thick and Thin and Coils. If I had not taken the class with Maggie I would have been so far out of my league. Jacey is a fun teacher. By the end of the class I was able to produce a fairly consistent thick and thin and was working on plying (!!!) my coils. Again, I learned masses. Jacey has a way of chanting the steps to help you not only keep your rythm but to remember the steps.

Jacey was very nice to pose for this picture.

Fiber, Fiber everywhere!

Look at all the beautiful colors!

mmm Merino Tencel!

Tess' yarns - Love this vendor!

This is what the workroom looked like when I got home........

Starting from the back of the work table: a box from paradise fibers with merino (2 lbs) and merino-tencel (2.5 lbs), sitting on top of that box is the silk hankies (3 pkg) I bought, and in the paper bag is superfine alpaca (1.5 lbs) and alpaca/angora (1.5lbs) the baskets are left over from the Yarn crawl, I need to find a place for them to live. The smaller box is from Gritty Knits and is merino-tencel (3lbs) and merino (1 lb) and a HUGE hank of foot fetish undyed stuff! Snuggled in there are 16 hanks of Aslan Trends undyed yarn for me to work with for my up-coming TRUNK SHOW at Fresh Purls (more to come on that). The two plastic wrapped balls are Romney (2 lbs) and that ginormous bag inthe sink is some dyed and undyed fleece from my mothers sheep - yes VERY old - with two beautiful hand carding paddles. So when I have some down time (!!!!!) I'm going to try to card some of the fleece. What is that 15 pounds????? Heaven

Oh yea almost forgot the SCORE I made a Kraemer with that fat Bear Creek yarn. It's that brown stuff left hand corner of this picture. I can't wait to overdye it!

OK this is the workroom now, everything put away, everything inventoried and all ready to get to work. We started our Merino Fiber Club this month, I have some custom colorwork to do and get in the mail by Monday. No worries, I have fiber and I couldn't be happier!!!

Comming soon some up dates on the Trunk Show and I'm hoping to have a tutorial up on dyeing. For any of you in the Rhode Island area, I'm teaching a class about dyeing on June 4th if you are interested there are two spots left........

Happy handcrafting!

Sunday, May 1, 2011

I am DESPERATE for fiber

Hi again,

I am going crazy, no word of a lie. I have been without new fiber to dye for two weeks now. Nothing in is nothing out. So I'm going crazy and the shop has nothing new.

Well I do have a few new things to show you, while I'm going nuts.

This is called Sonoma. it is a favorite of my friend Lia. Its greys, burgundy and purple. Looks really sweet in a lace weight, she made a shawl. Oh so beautiful.

This is deep sea, in Superwash. I love the stuff. It drafts ike silk and you CAN WASH what ever you make with it. Whoever came up with that is a genius! i make all of the kid stuff with it. Boogies, mud, food all get washed out!

OK I'm going to go back to moping about out the back orders. My mom says its because of shearing season, but come on! You didn't plan for that few months where there may be a strain?!?! I have a few things that are custom dyesand I feel really bad about making them wait for their treasure. But short of owning my own sheep (now that's an idea!) I am at the mercy of the suppliers. I'm going to have to bring that idea up with the hubby...... Hmmmm little white fluffy sheep clipping the grass.......

Let's see what happens

Have a great weekend

Saturday, April 30, 2011

Its that time of year again!

God, every one I am so sorry. I just can't seem to blog as regularly as I'm supposed to.

I'm going to try harder.

It's time for MARYLAND SHEEP AND WOOL FESTIVAL!!! I can not contain my excitement.

In just 5 days I begin my trek down to Jenn's in PA. and then from there a quick 2 hour jaunt into Glenwood, Maryland. There are a whole crew of us going again this year. We get a few hotel rooms and car pool back and forth to the festival. Plus a bottle of wine and the hot tub for after a long day of walking. Super excited!!

I'm taking two classes this year. "How to make your old wheel do new tricks" with Magie Casey and "Thick and Thin Coils" with Jacey Boggs. These are Saturday and Sunday morning so we will still get a MAJOR amount of shopping done. Looking forward to the classes. I've been more or less teaching myself how to spin. It will be nice to get a bit of tutoring from a real teacher. Ah the questions I have......

Here are a few quick pic of my latest stuff. And then I'm off to a soccer game.
This is Froggie Went a Courtin, superwash Merino. OOhh so soft.

This is San Diego Sunset - Superwash Merino and it was kettle-dyed. So soft and drafts like silk.

Hope your day is wonderful.


Saturday, January 8, 2011

Time to start anew!

I'm in love, yup, well not in the way your thinking. I found this fantastic Blog that is going to help me change......Everything! http://www.blacksburgebelle.com/ This woman April Bowles - Rocks! She is fountain of information. And I hope that drinking from that fountain will make this a more interesting blog for you.

Let's get started. Today, other than taking down the christmas decorations and making cookies for the boys, I will be preparing for our upcomming sale. http://www.juneprycefiberarts.etsy.com/ Everything will be 50% off, I'm thinking that quite a bit of my stock will be out-going. That same weekend as the sale, I am taking my first knitting classses up at Slader Mill in Pawtucket. Very excited!! Jenn says that starting my first project on double pointed needles was special. I'm not so confident, if I do end up sucking at the classes, I am still getting a FULL weekend of girl time and knitting. The boys will be going to my parents for the weekend. WooHoo hot tub all to ourselves!! Bathing suits optional.

So to try and be ahead of the game, I am fluffing and labling all of my rovings. We use these very pretty bands that have the name of the colorway and type of fiber, the weight, and a color picture. The bands help keep the rovings in a tidy bundle and look beautiful. I will also spend some time getting together enough SWAG. We have differnt stuff depending on what the fiber is used for. I even grew lavendar for sachets that go in the packaging. Sooo pretty and smell great!

After that's all done, I'm working with 18 micron Merino. This superfine stuff that felters use. I had and inspiration light come on while flipping thru my moms quilters catalog. Instead of trying to fit every color of the rainbow into my felters packets I would try to do some gradient color packets. Check it out....I started by researching the Colors of 2011. You know, what colors are going to be "hot" for the next year. Check out www.fashionising.com/trends and it will show color swatches and the "looks" that are upcomming. In this picture you can see the Honeysuckle (2nd row, 3rd color from right) the BeesWax (top row, 3rd color in) the Coral Rose (top row right hand side) the Lavender, Silver Cloud, and Silver Peony (on the botton row from right to left). I dyed darker purples and lighter oranges to fill out those packets, but they are still drying. I'm hoping to work on the Peapod and the Nautical Blues today. Working on these packets really help me to work out the mixology of the dye, allowing me to see the color in all its forms, prior to me using it on a larger amount of fiber. And it lets me see the colors near each other, which helps when designing new colorways!!!
Coffee is done, time to get dyeing. Hope you have a colorful day ;)

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Wow, Twice in one Week!!

Hello all!

Just quickly checking in. Trying to actually follow my resolutions. Today will be a small chat about what I do. This dyeing gig is pretty good. I retreat to my workroom to be swallowed up in a rainbow of color. I have been using large roasting pans to soak the rovinngs prior to applying the dye, but they have begun to spring leaks. I know, you all are cringing. "What!" you say, "citric acid in aluminum pans?!?!" Yes, my friends I had to use what was available. They work quite fine before the acid rots thru the bottom. I see no difference or problem with the rovings AT ALL. They are still soft and bright white when removed. No remember I only leave them in the pans until wet, no more than 15-20 minutes. I haven't tried over night or anything.

I am in search of "fish tubs". Anyone who has worked in a restraunt or a grocery prepared foods kitchen knows what I'm talking about. All the frozen/fresh fish arrives in these white plastic bins with tops. They are EXACTLY the size of roasting pans but made of sturdy, food grade plastic. I need some of these. I do still have some friends in the business, and I should just get off my lazy butt and given them a call. They are constantly throwing them out when the dishwaher has changed their shape enough for the tops not to fit correctly. OK, OK I'll call them today. Thanks for the push.
I am always looking for inspiration. I have folders and folders of pictures, both paper and on my computer. I don't go anywhere without my camera. Digital is a blessing!!! There is beauty everywhere, it's the taking of that beauty and reproducing it on the rovings thats the challenge. Exciting and extraordinary but still a challenge. I love it.

Whoops sorta got off the tracks there and now my time is up. I'll be checking in again this weekend.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Happy New Year (aka Screw the Resolutions)

Happy New Year All!

We just returned from the year end - New Year June Pryce company meeting. This is where the men get together and shoot off model rockets and target practice with the 22. While Jenn and I hang out and knitt and discuss what we will be doing with the shop for the next year. I must say it was a VERY productive meeting. I am so excited, we will be having a One Year Anniversary Sale. Everything is going to be 50% off for Januray 22-23 only. We intend to clear out the old and bring in the new. Sorta to shake things up. We are also going to start a Fiber Club!!! WooHoo can't wait. Exclusive colorways just for the lucky members. I've been brewing up all sort of beautiful new colorways.
I hope Christmas was nice for everyone. I was hosting this year, and I must say I enjoyed not have to travel. Everyone came to me. No stuffing the car full and driving with all the other crazies. Just a mellow 4 days of cooking and chatting with my family. Eating then because as of today that changes.
This is my VERY FIRST Project. I dyed this superwash, I spun it on my drop spindle and then I knit it on double pointed needles. It is a hat for my loving hubby, it should keep him very warm while he goes hunting. The head is my teenage son, and he was not happy about being my model.
This is a year of MORES and here is a few of my resolutions:

MORE exercise!! I love my food and it shows in my big fat ass, time to get moving!

MORE loving of the husband - yes, you know EXACTLY what I mean (heh heh)

MORE sales - yup we are kicking it up a notch and selling everything!!

MORE Blogging - I am planning to be blogging at least once a week.

MORE smiles, MORE laughter and MORE LIFE!!!

MORE later :)

Ps I'm on Ravelry now too!
DyenamicDyestress - check it out!