Bridget & ely
Congratulations! Please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org to collect your prizes.
Let's be real… I'm always excited to bring you a new giveaway! But, honestly, this is one of my favs so far. Give a warm welcome to Sun Valley Fibers. Sun Valley Fibers not only does beautiful hand-dyed yarn, but they also have created a really cool thing called the Yarn Buddy. I own one and it is one of my most useful knitting tools that I've bought to date. I use it all the time, so I just knew I had to persuade these folks to come visit us on the blog! Here's an interview I did with Jeanette of Sun Valley Fibers and a little more about how the Yarn Buddy works:
1. Please start by telling us a little bit about yourself and what you do?
Well, by day I'm the wife of a farmer/landscaper, mom to 2 teenage girls (one of whom is a freshman in college, the other a junior in high school), and I've been a court reporter for 26 years. Things can get slightly stressful at times, and yarn keeps me sane ;-)
2. You offer a variety of beautiful hand dyed yarns. Can you talk a little bit about what inspires you?
We have a farm in southwest Wisconsin -- and we live down in a valley. I'm surrounded by beautiful woods, and have perennial beds everywhere -- I'm inspired by all of it!
3. Do you have a favorite colorway or yarn that you offer?
My favorite yarn base is the MCN, merino/cashmere/nylon blend -- any weight of it -- it is so soft. We're getting a new yarn base in -- merino/cashmere/silk -- and I'm sure I'm going to love that as well!
My favorite color/colors I've got to say Calligraphy and Waterfalls are my favorites. Calligraphy is a muted blue/green, and Waterfalls is a grey/blue. They are both very calming, soothing colors.
4. You also offer a thing called the Yarn Buddy and the reason I asked you to be a guest on my blog. Can you tell everyone what a Yarn Buddy is and how it works?
Well, a Yarn Buddy is 2 circles of wood with a spike in the center. How you use it is you wind your skein of yarn into a center-pull ball, place the center of the yarn cake onto the spike, and pull from the outside strand of the yarn. Your yarn cake will spin on the disk of wood, and won't land on the floor when you tug on it.
5. How did you come up with the idea to start making Yarn Buddies?
Well, we live in an animal-friendly house, and we currently have 2 dogs and 4 cats. Everyone wants to sit by me or sit on my lap when I do finally sit down to knit -- I'm learning to crochet, but I'm far from good at it yet -- and my husband essentially got tired of me getting so crabby when one of the kitties tried to take off with the yarn cake. In the summers George spends a lot of time on the tractors in the fields, and given a proper amount of time to ponder, this was his solution to my problem. I was, of course, happy to share his solution to my dilemma with our customers at the fiber events we attend, and George's Yarn Buddy has been a huge hit!
George has made Yarn Buddies out of at least 54 different kinds of wood. Some of the wood is local to our area, and others are rather exotic and hard to find, but all of them are a work of art, and one-of-a-kind!
6. I own one of your Yarn Buddies in cedar (my favorite) which I purchased at my LYS, Serial Knitters, and I use it all the time. I see that you also offer double spindle versions. Do you have plans to expand your line with any other variations?
George is being kept quite busy with custom orders, filling wholesale orders and trying to keep stock for us so I can list it on the website and so we really haven't come up with any other versions yet. I guess perhaps the variation we've come up with lately is making doubles using several varieties of wood in the Yarn Buddy, not just a single variety of wood like we do in the Singles.
I am open to suggestions, though, so send me any you might have!
7. I always like to ask, why do you knit?
I've always been a creative kind of kid. I was always doing crafts when I was young, like paint-by-numbers, beading, and lots of counted cross stitch. Lots of counted cross stitch!
When we moved from a house to our farm, we had no animals, except for the dogs and cats. After a couple of years George wanted to get cattle. Our daughters rode the bus to school, and the bus took them right past a pasture with lots and lots of llamas (probably 45 or 50 of them). One day the darling daughters asked their dad if they could each have a llama. George said yes. That meant no cattle, because our farm is not big enough to house such different kinds of livestock.
I knew we weren't only going to have 2 male llamas, and so the logical answer was sheep. George chose Icelandic sheep. After a little bit of time we had lots of fleeces from the sheep, and had it processed into roving and yarn to sell -- so I learned how to knit, (it was right up my alley!!!) we started attending fiber events, we eventually decided to dye yarn, and are now starting to add dyed roving as well.
We still have some Icelandic sheep, but only sell the yarn and roving in the natural colors from our sheep.
8. If you were to knit and live anywhere in the world, where would you knit and live?
I think I would have to say Ireland or Scotland. I've never been to either place, but they look so beautiful. That would be absolute heaven on Earth for me!
9. What's been your worst knitting or in your case it could be a yarn dyeing disaster?
Well, I used to be terrible at not knitting a gauge swatch. I considered them a waste of my time. That is, until I knit 3/4 of a sweater and realized it was never going to fit me, and had to frog the whole thing. It's still a project that is hibernating. Perhaps I will tackle that sweater yet this winter. I'd sworn off sweaters for a little bit because of that, but it's probably time to get going on one again.
10. And last but not least, if you were enjoying a favorite drink while reading my blog, what would it be?
Oh, I'm a White Zinfandel kind of girl, although I do enjoy Amaretto and orange juice!
Thank you very much, Ve, it's been fun chatting!!
Sun Valley Fibers has sent over two very lovely prizes: a grand prize winner will receive a Yarn Buddy of their very own (!) plus a gorgeous skein of MCN fingering weight yarn in one of the two colors below & a runner up will receive the other skein of MCN fingering weight yarn.
And, I just need to quote Sun Valley Fiber's slogan here before I let you go, "Money can't buy happiness… but it can buy yarn, which is kind of the same thing." Ain't that the truth!?
I would like you to do the following if you would like to be entered into this week's giveaway:
1. Read over the rules if you have not done so already.
2. Leave a comment on this blog post by the end of Sunday, 11/04/12. What do you think of the Yarn Buddy? Do you own one? Would you want to? Any suggestions on variations?
I'll randomly pick the winners in 2 weeks and post the results along with the new giveaway, so be sure to check back. Good luck everyone.