Thursday, February 21, 2019

Pinwheel Square - Moogly2019CAL


I am thrilled to be a part of Moogly's year long Crochet Along again this year! Each year it is so fun to see all of the different patterns from other designers, not to mention the creative color combinations people use for their Moogly2019CAL Blankets. This is my third year designing a square for the CAL, and I decided to try something a little bit different. Enjoy!
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Pinwheel Square Pattern
Designed by Laurinda Reddig

Get spun with this fun and colorful Pinwheel blanket square. Each petal is worked out from a center ring, then back in to opposite direction without turning to form the raised edges. The reverse single crochet edge is worked into the front loop only, leaving the back loop to stitch into for the next petal. This idea may have you spinning, but follow the instructions step by step and give it a try! (Scroll to bottom for link to get printable PDF).

FINISHED SIZE 12” by 12”
MATERIALS
4 colors Worsted Weight yarn and J hook (or hook to get gauge).
    Color suggestions A (darkest), B (medium), C (higher contrast), D (neutral).
    Sample working in Red Heart With Love, 100% acrylic, worsted weight yarn 
         in Peacock, Cornsilk, Lettuce, and Taupe.
13 Stitch Markers (recommended).
GAUGE 12 stitches by 7 rows = 4” by 4”.
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SPECIAL STITCHES 
(find other Abbreviations used here)
Changing Colors: Work previous stitch up to last yarn over, yarn over to with new color, pull through last two loop, drop old color to back of work and continue with new color.
Double crochet 2 together (dc2tog): *Yo, insert hook into next dc, yo, pull up a loop, yo, pull through 2 loops; Repeat from *, yo, pull through all 3 loops on hook.
Half double crochet 2 together (hdc2tog): Yo, insert hook into next ch-1 sp, yo, pull up a loop (3 loops on hook), yo, insert hook into next dc, yo, pull up a loop, yo, pull through all 5 loops on hook.
Half Treble Crochet (htr): Yo 2 times, insert hook into next st, yo, pull up a loop, yo, pull through 2 loops, yo, pull through remaining 3 loops on hook.
Reverse Single Crochet (revsc): Without turning your work, working from left to right (or right to left for left-handed crocheters), insert hook in the next stitch (under your hook), yo, pull up a loop without twisting the hook, yo, pull through both loops on hook.
Single Crochet 3 Together (sc3tog): [Insert hook into next st, yo, pull up a loop] 3 times, yo, pull through all 4 loops on hook.
Treble Crochet 3 Together (tr3tog): *Yo 2 times, insert hook into next st, yo, pull up a loop, [yo, pull through 2 loops] 2 times; Repeat from * 3 times, yo, pull through all 4 loops on hook.
TUTORIAL LINKS (on Mooglyblog.com)


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PATTERN
Pinwheel Pattern Notes
  • Reverse single crochets form the raised “crab stitch” edging of each Petal. They are worked from left to right (or right to left for left-handed crocheters).
  • Recommended to place a stitch marker in the unused back loop of the last treble crochet stitch so make it easier to find on Rnd 1 of the Square.
  • Each time you change colors on the Pinwheel, flip unused colors of yarn up under the hook, between the hook and working yarn. This will bring the yarn up so the new color is ready to join on the next Petal.
  • The first sc of each Pinwheel Petal is worked in the previous color, making it easier to find the first stitch to work into for the next Petal.
  • If you have trouble finding the center of the ring, or the first or last stitches on a petal or round, place a stitch marker in the stitch when you first make it.


Pinwheel Pattern
With Color A, ch 14. (Be sure to read all of the pattern notes before starting)

First Petal: Join with sl st in 4th ch from hook to form ring (place stitch marker in center of ring), work into remaining chs, sc in next ch, hdc in next ch, 2 hdc in next ch, dc in next ch, 2 dc in next ch, htr (see Special Stitches) in next ch, 2 htr in next ch, tr in next ch, 2 tr in next ch, tr in last ch, place stitch marker in back loop of last tr made; Do not turn, working back in the other direction, revsc (see Special Stitches) in the flo (front loops only) of each stitch across to ring (14 revscs), sl st in center of ring, do not turn.

Next Petal: Working in unused back loops (blo) of previous petal, sc in first sc changing color to B (see Special Stitches), hdc in next hdc, 2 hdc in next hdc, dc in next hdc, 2 dc in next dc, htr in next dc, 2 htr in next dc, tr in next htr, 2 tr in next htr, tr in next htr, leave remaining 4 sts unused; Do not turn, working back in the other direction, revsc in the flo of each stitch across to ring (last stitch will be in prev color), sl st in ring, do not turn.
Repeat “Next Petal” instructions for 10 more Petals. Change to color C for third Petal, then alternate colors A, B, and C around for a total of 12 petals.

Joining Petals: Fold Petals so front (or right) sides of first and last petal are facing together. Join petals together by slip stitching through both the back loop of Last Petal and unused loops of beginning chain on First Petal, keeping slip stitches on the back (or wrong) sides. Finish off all three colors.
Square Pattern Notes
  • If loops are getting too loose when working only into the back loop, pull up on ridge of revscs. This will pull up the front loops they were worked into, tightening back loops so the holes do not seem as big.
  • The back loop of the last treble on each petal may be difficult to find unless you used stitch markers. However, you can use any loop at the top of that stitch that works for you, just be consistent.

Square Pattern
With right side facing, work into back loops of the last 5 trebles that at the ends of each Petal (behind the revscs).

Rnd 1: Working into any of the color A Petals, join color D with a sc in blo of third unused tr (stitch before marker), *ch 2, sc in unused blo of next tr of same petal (see pattern notes), sk to next Petal, tr in same back loop as last tr worked into next Petal, [dc in blo of next tr, hdc in blo of next tr, sc in blo of last 2 trs, sk to next Petal, dc in same back loop as last tr worked into next Petal] 2 times, dc in blo of next tr, hdc in blo of next tr**, sc in blo of next tr; Rep from *2 more times; Rep from * to ** once, join with sl st in first sc – 60 sts and 4 ch-2 sps.

Rnd 2: Ch 2 (does not count as a st here and throughout), dc in first sc, *(2 dc, ch 1, 2 dc) in ch-2 sp, dc in next 2 sts, hdc in next 2 sts, sc in next 7 sts, hdc in next 2 sts**, dc in next 2 sts; Rep from * 2 more times; Rep from * to ** once, dc in last st, join with sl st in first dc – 76 sts and 4 ch-1 sps.

Rnd 3: Ch 2, dc in first 3 dc, *(2 dc, ch 1, 2 dc) in ch-1 sp, dc in next 5 sts, hdc in next 3 sts, sc in next 3 sts, hdc in next 3 sts, **, dc in next 5 sts; Rep from * 2 more times; Rep from * to ** once, dc in last 2 dc, join with sl st in first dc. Finish off color D – 92 sts and 4 ch-1 sps.

Rnd 4: Join color B with sl st in second dc made on Rnd 3, ch 2, dc in same dc as join, *3 tr in next dc, dc2tog (see Special Stitches), hdc2tog in next ch-sp and dc (see Special Stitches), [dc in next st, 3 tr in next st, dc in next st, hdc in next st, sc in next st, hdc in next st] 3 times**, dc in next dc; Rep from * 2 more times; Rep from * to ** once, join with sl st in first dc. Finish off color B – 120 sts.

Rnd 5: Join color C with sc in second tr of prev rnd, 2 sc in same tr, *sc in each of next 5 sts, [3 sc in next tr, sc in next 2 sts, sc3tog (see Special Stitches), sc in next 2 sts] 3 times**, 3 sc in next tr; Rep from * 2 more times; Rep from * to ** once, join with sl st in first sc. Finish off color C – 128 sts.

Rnd 6: Join color A with sc in second sc of prev rnd, *hdc in next sc, dc in next sc, (dc, tr) in next sc, 2 tr in next sc, (tr, dc) in next sc, dc in next sc, hdc in next sc, [sc in next sc, hdc in next sc, dc in next sc, tr3tog (see Special Stitches), dc in next sc, hdc in next sc] 3 times**, sc in next sc; Rep from * 2 more times; Rep from * to ** once, join with sl st in first sc. Finish off color A – 116 sts.

Rnd 7: Join color D with sc in first sc of prev rnd, sc in next 4 sts, 2 sc in next tr, ch 2, 2 sc in next tr, *sc in next 27 sts, 2 sc in next tr, ch 2, 2 sc in next tr; Rep from * 2 more times, sc in next 22 sts, join with sl st in first sc. Finish off color D and weave in all ends – 128 sts. Note: If your block is not quite 12”, you can add additional rounds of sc, or replace Rnd 7 with hdc or dc around, adding a couple additional stitches at each corner. each corner.

Find Moogly's blog post about the Pinwheel Square here and everything you need to know about the Moogly2019CAL here

You can find a printable PDF of this pattern on Ravelry here.

Now, go back and find the previous three squares and check back at Moogly every week for a new Square design from a new designer. I cannot wait to see what colors you have chosen. Have fun!

Friday, October 12, 2018

Dyers In Their Studios - Lori of Fidalgo Artisan Yarns


Introducing Lori Maul of Fidalgo Artisan Yarns & Clothing. We met Lori last fall at Vogue Knitting Live in Seattle. Her booth was just down the aisle from our display in the Artist's Gallery. We meet a lot of yarn dyers at the various shows we attend each year, but some we know we want to work with right away because of their obvious enthusiasm for what we are creating with our Ficstitches Yarns Kits, combining hand-dyed yarns, historical fiction and my designs. Lori was clearly excited to work with us on a future kit, coming to our booth to learn more, and giving us sample yarn to begin dreaming up what design it would be come. We are excited to feature her Winter Silk (baby alpaca and tussah silk) yarn in our upcoming Ficstitches Yarns Winter Kit. Preorders are open this month only. Learn all about Lori and her inspiration in her own words...

Winter Silk featured in Ficstitches Yarns Winter Kit Club
BACKGROUND
How long have you been dyeing yarn?
I’ve learned over 30 years ago.

How did you get started dyeing?
I studied dyeing at the University of Washington where I received my BA.  My studies centered on the fiber arts, particularly weaving.  Students studied all classes of dyes, including natural dyes.

What is your background?
I was raised in a small town southeast of Seattle.  Growing up, my mother always had a stitchery project going; she was an excellent cross-stitcher.  A friend of hers taught me to knit and I was hooked.  As an exchange in West Germany in the early 1980’s, I learned to design sweaters and continental-style knitting.  I studied textiles and fiber arts at the University of Washington and have always had a side business selling knitwear and/or hand-dyed yarns. 

My professional career was in administration, finance, human resources, and fundraising.  Almost five years ago, I left my career to open a small boutique featuring handmade clothing.  I opened Fidalgo Artisan Yarn Company a little over three years ago.  In April, I merged the two shops and haven’t looked back.  I started to do yarns shows last year.  The company’s new name is Fidalgo Artisan Yarn & Clothing.

Do you have any special experience with art or science that influences your dyeing?
Study at the university greatly influenced my need for top quality yarns, my careful dye processes, and my desire to create the best hand-dyed yarn possible. I want to be proud of each skein we sell.  Formal study of color also enhanced my color sense and my ability to mix/match colors. 


YOUR YARN
What makes your yarn special or unique?
I am an immersion dyer and spend a great deal of time at the dye pot mixing colors.  I use 9 colors to create my yarns.  I remove my yarns from the dye pot, hand manipulate them, add other colors of dye, and submerge the yarns again.  I may to this 7-8 times for one dye lot.  This process creates beautiful color transition and blending.
Dyeing is very creative for me.  I generally do not dye repeatable colors.

Lastly, our luxury fibers/yarns are of very high quality.  We have unique blends (baby camel and silk anyone?) and a wide variety of weights/blends. 

How do you choose your colors and name your yarns?
This is always fun and a challenge.  When Emily began working with me, she said she had always wanted to name paint colors.  Perfect.  We will often lay yarns out on a table and ask our customers to name them.  A few of our customers are very clever…so is Emily!

Where do you find inspiration?
Like many artists, I find most of my inspiration in nature.  My dye studio is at home and overlooks Cornet Bay on Whidbey Island.  I love to garden and between the two, there is no better inspiration for me.

Lastly, I often look at a skein and imagine how it will look when knit/crochet/woven.  It is important that my yarns look good in a skein but more importantly, look good when used in a project.


JUST THE FACTS
How many colorways do you have?  Unlimited
Do you create seasonal or special order colors?  Yes.
How many and what types of bases do you use?  Over 25 base yarns including many luxury fiber blends: silk, cashmere, alpaca, sea cell, baby camel.
Where do your yarn bases come from?  I have three different suppliers.
Where can we find your yarn? LYSs and online?  We sell only our signature yarn in our shop, located in Anacortes WA., and online at fidalgoyarns.com.  We also bring our yarns to at least 6 shows each year.


PERSONAL
What are your favorite color?  All the luscious shades/colors of orange.
Favorite fibers?  Wool, alpaca, silk
Do you crochet, knit, or spin? What came first? Knit first, spin second, crochet third (and just a little bit!)
Anything else you would like to share? Our name, Fidalgo, comes is the name of the island where our shop is located.  People are always curious about that.


LINK UP
Website?  fidalgoyarns.com
Ravelry Group?  Fidalgo artisan yarn lovers
Facebook? fidalgoyarns
Instagram?  fidalgoyarns

Choose Hemlock Grove or Loam in Fidalgo's Winter Silk
for the Ficstitches Yarns Winter Kit Club
Preorders Open Now! October Only!

All photos courtesy of Fidalgo Artisan Yarns and Clothing.

Tuesday, October 2, 2018

COWLTOBER 2018 - Get a Free Pattern Every Wednesday in October



Welcome to COWLtober! Sign up for the ReCrochetions Mailing List so you don't miss anymore of the Free COWLtober Pattern Coupon Codes which will be sent out in the ReCrochetions Newsletter tomorrow morning.

Each week there will be a New Cowl and a New Coupon Code. The coupon codes will be good for 1 day only 8am on the day it is sent until 8am the following day.

The cowls included this year will include a couple I designed earlier this year for 2 different Yarn Crawls, one I did for a limited kit with a local yarn dyer, one of my first designs for my Hooked on Hand Dyed pattern collection, and finally a brand new cowl pattern which will be included in my upcoming Secret Stitches Crochet Companion Book 2 (coming out later this year).

Don't miss a Cowl! Sign up for my newsletter today!




Thursday, July 5, 2018

Twists & Turns Square - Moogly CAL



I love checking out the new squares coming out in Moogly's Crochet Along Afghan each month from so many talented designers, and am excited to be a part of it for the second year. As I was working on this square in Red Heart With Love alongside my 92 year old Grandmother Diana, who was working on a plastic canvas house, she told me why she loves Red Heart Yarns: 

“Some time ago I decided that I would never buy anything but Red Heart because I can always match the colors…. Another thing about Red Heart is the yarn is all the same weight, you buy another brand and it’s not quite what you were working with.” – Diana Smith, 92.


Twists & Turns Square
Designed by Laurinda Reddig of ReCrochetions.com

Just a few twists and turns create this fun textured square including chain loops twisted into braids, taller stitches worked into a previous row, and post stitches for a basket weave border.


Downloadable version now available on Ravelry including Stitch Diagram. Download HERE


Difficulty: Advanced Beginner
Finished Size: 12” by 12”

Yarn Used
5 Colors Worsted Weight Yarn. Sample shown in Red Heart With Love 100% Acrylic yarn.
Colors Used in Sample: Boysenberry (A), Mango (B), Jadeite (C), Taupe (D), Peacock (E)
(Moogly's version is at the top of the page, I love the colors she chose! Note that the center twists slightly to the right on hers and to the left on mine, because I am left-handed)

Notions
J/6.0mm hook or size to obtain gauge
Yarn needle


Gauge
Rounds 1-3 measures approximately 3 ¾” by 3 ¾”.

Note: You may also add additional rounds of single crochet to reach 12”.

ABBREVIATIONS USED
   (also see special stitches)
Chain (ch)
Double Crochet (dc)
Half Double Crochet (hdc)
Loop (lp)
Previous (prev)
Repeat (Rep)
Single Crochet (sc)
Skip (sk)
Spaces (sps)
Stitch (st)
Treble Crochet (tr)
Yarn Over (yo)

SPECIAL STITCHES
Front Post Double Crochet (fpdc): Yo, insert hook around post from front of next st, yo, pull up a loop, [yo, draw through 2 lps on hook] 2 times.
Back Post Double Crochet (bpdc): Yo, insert hook around post from back of next st, yo, pull up a loop, [yo, draw through 2 lps on hook] 2 times.
Front Post Double Crochet (fphdc): Yo, insert hook around post from front of next st, yo, pull up a loop, yo, draw through all 3 lps on hook.
Back Post Double Crochet (bphdc): Yo, insert hook around post from back of next st, yo, pull up a loop, yo, draw through all 3 lps on hook.
PATTERN NOTES
·       Chain-8 spaces at corners will be twisted and looped together after completing Round 8, creating the raised braid at each corner.
·       Taller stitches are worked 2 rounds down, into stitches that were skipped on the previous round. Insert hook keeping the hook in front of the stitches worked on the previous round so yarn overs do not wrap around the stitches of the round above.
·      Inserting hook from back to front at the end of ribbing rows allows you to work around the beginning chain, bringing the chain forward to create the look of a front post stitch.

PATTERN
With Color A, ch 4, join with sl st in first ch to form a ring.

Rnd 1: Ch 3 (counts as first dc here and throughout), 2 dc in ring, [ch 8, 3 dc in ring] 3 times, ch 8, join with sl st in top of beg ch – 12 dc, 4 ch-lps.
Rnd 2: Ch 3, dc in same st as join, [*sk next dc, 3 dc in next dc, ch 8**, 2 dc next dc] 3 times; Rep * to ** once, join with sl st in top of beg ch – 20 dc, 4 ch-lps. Finish off Color A.
Rnd 3: Join Color B with sl st in same st as join, ch 3, dc in same st as join, [*tr in skipped dc from Rnd 1, sk dc behind tr, dc in next dc, tr in same dc from Rnd 1 as prev tr, sk dc behind tr, 2 dc next dc, ch 8**, 2 dc next dc] 3 times; Rep * to ** once, join with sl st in top of beg ch – 28 sts, 4 ch-lps. Finish off Color B.
Rnd 4: Join Color C with sl st in same st as join, ch 3, dc in same st as join, [*tr in skipped dc from Rnd 2, sk dc behind tr, dc in next 3 sts, tr in next sk dc on Rnd 2, sk dc behind tr, 2 dc next dc, ch 8**, 2 dc next dc] 3 times; Rep * to ** once, join with sl st in top of beg ch – 36 sts, 4 ch-lps. Finish off Color C.
Rnd 5: Join Color B with sl st in same st as join, ch 3, dc in same st as join, [*tr in skipped dc from Rnd 3, sk dc behind tr, dc in next 2 sts, sk next dc, 2 dc in next dc, dc in next tr, tr in next sk dc on Rnd 3, sk dc behind tr, 2 dc next dc, ch 8**, 2 dc next dc] 3 times; Rep * to ** once, join with sl st in top of beg ch – 44 sts, 4 ch-lps. Finish off Color B.
Rnd 6: Join Color A with sl st in same st as join, ch 3, dc in same st as join, [*tr in skipped dc from Rnd 4, sk dc behind tr, dc in next 2 sts, tr in next sk dc on Rnd 4, sk dc behind tr, dc next dc, tr in same dc from Rnd 4 as prev tr, sk dc behind tr, dc next 2 sts, tr in next sk dc on Rnd 4, sk dc behind tr, 2 dc next dc, ch 8**, 2 dc next dc] 3 times; Rep * to ** once, join with sl st in top of beg ch – 52 sts, 4 ch-lps. Finish off Color A.
Rnd 7: Join Color D with sl st in same st as join, ch 3, dc in same st as join, [*tr in skipped dc from Rnd 5, sk dc behind tr, dc in next 2 sts, tr in next sk dc on Rnd 5, sk dc behind tr, dc in next 3 sts, tr in next sk dc on Rnd 5, sk dc behind tr, dc in next 2 dc, tr in next sk dc on Rnd 5, sk dc behind tr, 2 dc next dc, ch 8**, 2 dc next dc] 3 times; Rep * to ** once, join with sl st in top of beg ch – 60 sts, 4 ch-lps.

Twisted Loop Braids
*Beginning with any ch-8 lp on Rnd 1, [twist loop once to right, pull loop from next rnd up through loop from back to front] 5 times; Rep from * on each corner. (Refer to Moogly’s video on Braiding Crochet Loops: https://www.mooglyblog.com/braiding-crochet-loops/ )

Rnd 8: Ch 3, dc in next dc, [*tr in skipped dc from Rnd 6, sk st behind tr, hdc in next 2 sts, dc in next sk dc on Rnd 6, do NOT sk dc behind, sc in next 5 sts, dc in next sk dc on Rnd 6, sk dc behind tr, hdc in next 2 dc, tr in next sk dc on Rnd 6, do not sk dc, dc next 2 dc, twist next ch-8 sp, (2 sc, ch 1, 2 sc) in twisted ch-8 sp**, dc next 2 dc] 3 times; Rep * to ** once, join with sl st in top of beg ch – 88 sts. Finish off Color D.

Basket Weave Border
Rnd 9: Sk beg ch, join Color E with sl st in next dc, ch 2 (counts as first hdc).,, *hdc in each st across to ch-1 at corner, (2 hdc, ch 1, 2 hdc) in corner ch-1 sp; Rep from * 3 more times, hdc in last 3 sts, join with sl st around beg ch, inserting hook from back to front – 104 sts.
Rnd 10: Ch 2 (counts as first dc here and throughout), fpdc around each of next 2 hdc, [bpdc around next 3 hdc, fpdc around next 3 hdc] 2 times, *bpdc around next 3 hdc, fpdc around next 2 hdc, (dc, ch 1, dc) in next corner ch-sp, fpdc around next 2 hdc**, [bpdc around next 3 hdc, fpdc around next 3 hdc] 3 times; Rep from * 2 more times; Rep from * to ** once, bpdc around next 3 hdc, join with sl st around beg ch, inserting hook from back to front – 112 sts.
Rnd 11: Ch 2, fpdc around each of next 2 fpdc, [bpdc around next 3 bpdc, fpdc around next 3 fpdc] 2 times, *bpdc around next 3 bpdc, fpdc around next 3 sts, (dc, ch 1, dc) in next corner ch-sp, fpdc around next 3 sts**, [bpdc around next 3 bpdc, fpdc around next 3 fpdc] 3 times; Rep from * 2 more times; Rep from * to ** once, bpdc around next 3 bpdc, join with sl st around beg ch, inserting hook from back to front – 120 sts.
Rnd 12: Ch 2, fphdc around each of next 2 fpdc, [bphdc around next 3 bpdc, fphdc around next 3 fpdc] 2 times, *bphdc around next 3 bpdc, fphdc around next 3 fpdc, hdc in top of next dc, fphdc around post of same dc, dc in next corner ch-sp, fphdc around post of next dc, hdc in top of next fpdc, fphdc around post of same fpdc, fphdc around next 2 fpdc**, [bphdc around next 3 bpdc, fphdc around next 3 fpdc] 3 times; Rep from * 2 more times; Rep from * to ** once, bphdc around next 3 bpdc, join with sl st around beg ch, inserting hook from back to front – 128 sts. Finish off Color E.
Rnd 13: Join Color A with sc in next fphdc, ch 1, *sc in each hdc across to dc in corner, (2 sc, ch 1, 2 sc) in corner dc; Rep from * 3 more times, sc in each st across, sc in top of sl st of prev rnd, join with sl st in first sc – 144 sts. Finish off and weave in all ends.

Hope you enjoy making this square as much as I enjoyed designing it. Note that your gauge may vary, and you can always work a taller stitch like half double or double crochet in the final round, or even add a second round of single crochets. If you prefer reading a diagram to a written pattern, I will be adding a stitch diagram when I upload the printer-friendly version of the pattern to RavelryEnjoy!




© 2018, Designed by Laurinda Reddig aka ReCrochetions. All Rights Reserved. This design, the pattern, and the images are property of ReCrochetions. You may use this pattern for personal use and charity. No part of this document may be reproduced, altered, or distributed in any form, or by any means, without express written permission from Laurinda Reddig. 

Friday, April 6, 2018

Dyers in Their Studios - Stacey of Fierce Fibers

Meet Stacey Serafin of Fierce Fibers (formerly known as Thoroughly Thwacked). Her gradient yarns will be featured in our upcoming Summer 2018 Ficstitches Yarns Crochet Kit Club. Preorders are open this month only.

But here is the profile I wrote about her when I did my first collaboration with her in December 2016. Things have changed a bit now that she primarily focuses on Gradient Cakes with some coordinating solids, but this interview was particularly interesting to learn more about how the gradients are made...

I first met Stacey last year at CGFF, although I had heard about her yarns. As I was walking around crocheting a shawl with a project bag hanging from my wrist (as you do), I was excited to find her booth and discover that she was a crocheter! She was crocheting a shawl at the time, though she knits as well, of course.

We ran into her again during the Rose City Yarn Crawl last March, and chose some yarn to play with for a future Ficstitches Yarns Crochet Kit Club. But that Kit won't be coming until early 2018, so I was really excited when we came up with the a Shawl Kit to do together this year.

Now learn more about Stacey...


Decadent Bliss Shawl in Stacey's Gradient Lace
BACKGROUND
·    How long have you been dyeing yarn? Since 2013, after learning how to knit in 2011 & learning how to spin fiber into yarn in 2012.

·      How did you get started dyeing? I got started when a friend of mine who owned a yarn shop was looking for something specific and couldn't find it.  We ended up developing a gradient kit for customers and the reception was quite good.  I enjoyed collaborating and working with people who were creative and it was great to see people make the kit we made and make it their own.

·     What is your background?  Received a B.S. in Physics and B.S. in Mathematics from the State University of New York at Buffalo. Then received a Masters in Nanotechnology in 2005 from the University of Delft in The Netherlands.

·     Do you have any special experience with art or science that influences your dyeing? There is a certain aspect that appeals to someone with a scientific background such as repeatability, planning and experimentation, not to mention all the chemistry behind it.  I've always been a big planner and with my scientific background experimentation and chemistry are big with me.  

     There are parts of dyeing though that I would say are attractive to me for the very reason, that they are the opposite of what I know and am comfortable with.  For example, there is also a big part of dyeing that is creativity.  Not that I'm not creative but the study and appeal of color and certain color combinations is something that fascinates me.  What makes us creative?  What makes us like one color combination and hate another?  Dyeing is a combination of all these factors.  I guess one of my best experiences is keeping my own curiosity from when I was a child!
Fierce Fibers yarns at OFFF. That cake in the middle was destined
to become Laurinda's newest shawl pattern, Decadent Bliss.
YOUR YARN
·       What makes your yarn special or unique?  I would like to think what makes my yarn special is me!  When I started dyeing my brain was riddled with ways to modify the process and try and squeeze more and more color into things. Yarn is my medium of expressing myself and always trying to push the boundaries and give people something different to work with.  For example, early on I learned about pooling and how the dye process can influence it.  So I made up a way to make skeins that didn't pool.  I also exploit pooling in a few of my colorways.  I've tried to come up with ways to use the “difficult” colors to the best of my ability.  

    I've talked to my distributors and tried to understand more about my supply chain.  I'm always talking to customers and finding out what they like as well.  What makes my yarns special is me.  My selection of the best bases I can find, combined with the best techniques, while being sensitive to the supply chain and aware of what my customers want.  Obviously this makes for a high quality product that is packed with color.

    ·     What is something interesting about your dyeing process that non-dyers might not know? I don't just use any single dye technique out there.  In many of my yarns I use multiple techniques because each technique has both good and bad things about it.  I have spent a lot of time working with different fibers to try and understand how each of them behave in the dye pot...because no one likes felted yarn or fiber!  

   Another thing that people may not know is that my cake gradients are all made by me.  Cake gradients first need to be knitted up into what they call a blank which is basically a piece of fabric.  They then need to be dyed, frogged (ripped out) and balled up.  As you can imagine, this is all labor intensive.  Unlike other dyers I do not buy my blanks, I make them myself because I want to be able to give my customers gradients in yarns they don't see anywhere else.   

·      How do you choose your colors and name your yarns? Experimentation is probably the biggest way I choose my colors at the moment, although I'm currently trying to expand my knowledge on color and doing more and more exercises on color planning and color studies.  My yarn names mostly come from how I feel when I hold the yarn.  My colorway names come from every day conversations that I have with people and I hear catch phrases that I think, “that would be a great colorway name” so I write it down and really think about what that would look like.  Also, sometimes a color comes out of the pot and it just looks like something so I go with that.

·       Where do you find inspiration?  Everywhere!  Pinterest, facebook, pictures in my head...
Here is that "Oregon" gradient cake just dyed up. Stacey is one
of the few gradient dyers I've found who takes the extra steps to
get the kinks out of a dyed blank. A must for crocheting with it!
JUST THE FACTS
·    How many colorways do you have? In the 3 years I've been dyeing I've probably made over 200 colorways.  Currently I have about 20 solid colorways I regularly sell.

·     Do you create seasonal or special order colors? Yes, but usually in a strange and quarky way.  For example for Valentine's Day this year I made Dragon's Breath.  It's a deep red tone for all those people who like to enjoy garlic ladened meals on Valentine's.

·    How many and what types of bases do you use? At the moment I have 18 bases but I am reducing that number drastically.  I will be sticking to bases that are more luxurious since that is what I prefer to work with.  I prefer to work with cashmere and silk blends along with a baby alpaca laceweight.

·        Where do your yarn bases come from? All over the world.

·       Where can we find your yarn? LYSs and online? My yarns and fiber can be found currently at Pearl Fiber Arts in Portland, OR as well as online at www.fiercefibers.com.  A small selection is also available at Embraceable Ewe in Hamburg, NY as well as Quilt n' Things Fiber Arts in Montrose, CA.  Also, please check out my events section on my webpage to see me in person at future festivals.
Much of Stacey's yarns come in cones like this so she has more options,
whether she knits it into blanks on a knitting machine or puts it into hanks.
PERSONAL

·     What are your favorite colors?  I love all my children...err...colors equally. Especially red, I love red just as equally as all the rest ;)

·       Favorite fibers? Animal fibers are definitely my loves. 

·      Do you crochet, knit, or spin? What came first? I learned to crochet when I was very young.  My mom had a crochet blanket that we would work on when we would sit on the couch and watch Dynasty together.  I did all sorts of crafty things when I was younger, macrame, boondoggle, beading, friendship bracelets, cross stitch.  It all fell away as I became a teenager and went to college.  After my second son was born I really wanted to learn how to knit so I could make something with my hands.  I took one class and I was off.  I made some fibery friends and learned how to spin a few years after that.  I will also confess to having rescued an antique rug loom that my step-father is currently refurbishing for me.

·       Anything else you would like to share? Pie.  Do you have any pie?  I like pie!

LINK UP
·       Website: Fiercefibers.com
·       Facebook: Facebook.com/fiercefibers
·       Instagram: fiercefibers

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