Crafts, Knitting, Photography, Travel, Yarn/Roving

2017 Yarn & Fiber Colors – Weeks 10 – 24

Aloha!

I’m trying out a new theme for this blog and the header photograph is a panorama photo taken by my amazing hubby, Jake. And yes, this will be a colorway soon ūüôā

The past few months have been amazing and I’m still getting used to the new shoppe platform as well as keeping the Etsy shoppe. It has been a wonderful – albeit scary – learning experience and I have come to learn that both platforms have their pros and cons, just like everything in life. I’m so grateful for all the support from my fiber friends, non-fiber friends and family as I go along this fun journey of mine.

I’m super excited for the summer and have some fun things planned. We do have some family coming in tomorrow so I might put the shoppes on vacation mode or else just know shipping will be delayed a few days for in-stock items.

I’ll keep you posted on summer plans, but for now, here are the colors for weeks 10-24.

Starting with the most recent, I had dyed up this colorway in cotton yarn years ago and finally got around to dyeing it in wool. We were driving around pineapple fields on Oahu one year and I just loved how the sunset was making the fields a beautiful reddish color. In addition I did take a photo of a pink pineapple at the Dole Plantation which was astonishing to me since all I’ve ever seen were yellow! Here is PINEAPPLE FIELDS in yarn and wool.

 

This past week was Pride Week here in Los Angeles so I dyed up my RAINBOW PRIDE FLAG colorway. This was my very first self-striping colorway and I don’t dye it up very often. One of the first skeins I did dye was used for my Love is Love Sock Pattern. This years’ yarn skeins have already sold out, but the pattern is still available on both shoppes, Ravelry and Knitpicks.

 

For the Spring 2017 “Addicted to Sock Knitting” eZine, indie dyers were challenged to come up with a colorway based on their favorite children’s book. The book I chose was Hans Christian Andersen’s The Princess and the Pea¬†and created both a self-striping yarn and variegated yarn. The pre-orders are now closed, but here are the two versions I created.

 

You know how I love sunsets and I couldn’t help but create a colorway from this photo I took of a SAN CLEMENTE SUNSET. We have family living down in Orange County and we visited them just after Thanksgiving last year. So so pretty!
SANCLEMENTESUNSET_COLL.jpg

This year I started a new dye collection inspired by food and drink. ¬†I just completed my final dye session and will be creating a new set of Mini’s (!) soon. In the meantime, this is a colorway based on a fabulous dessert we had at the Blue Bayou Restaurant inside the Pirates of the Caribbean ride at Disneyland!! This is¬†CHOCOLATE MOUSSE CAKE and the dessert was divine . . .

 

I expanded my Sports/Team self-striping yarn this year and found many colorways can be used for a variety of teams: football, basketball, baseball, hockey, racing, local schools, etc. Here are a few that I dyed up and can be suitable for schools/teams in Los Angeles, Alabama, Ohio, Indiana, South Carolina and more. These are now available in the dyed-to-order section of the shoppe.

I dyed up this one because I love these colors!

 

ROSE GARDEN is a self-striping colorway created using 2 different dye techniques! The inspiration came a few summers ago when we took our visiting niece to the Huntington Library, Art Collections and Gardens in San Marino, California. The Rose Garden was exceptionally beautiful and the photo I took of Alayna walking through the garden reminded me of beauty, romance, innocence and young love that I knew I had to create a colorway.

 

This next colorway is an oldie-but-goodie and it has oh, about 13 different colors in it so I don’t dye it very often. I did do a gradient yarn too, so the colors don’t repeat – I thought it would be fun for a shawl project! I took this photo at the Long Beach Aquarium of the Pacific and just love all the colorful fish and plant-life – not to mention the coral and rocks. I ended up spinning a small skein of the wool and love how the colors came out using a Navajo ply. Some skeins/braids of AQUARIUM are available on the shoppe.

Here is the Rambouillet/Silk yarn I spun:

 

My first set of 2017 mini’s sold out, but I was ready with my ‘Spring Set’ of MENEHUNE MINI‘s! I do have a couple of these sets available on the shoppe. These are 10x 10-gram balls of hand-dyed sock yarn that I already made into center-pull balls. You just pull the top yarn to start crafting!

 

Remember how I said I was doing a food/drink collection? Well, here’s a fabulous one from Oahu: MANGO SORBET. Jake and I were staying on the North Shore one trip and often dined at a restaurant called Ola’s at Turtle Bay Resort.¬†It was a family owned joint, right there on the beach where you can enjoy drinks or a meal while watching the world go by . . . Ola’s recently closed but I’ll always remember the view, the food, the awesome staff and their wonderful desserts.

 

Since we are talking about Hawaii, here’s another one – inspired by a super special drink called the LAVA FLOW.¬†I had my very first drink at Duke’s on Waikiki Beach with a handsome man who would later become my beloved husband Jake. After he bought my first Lava Flow, it became an instant favorite and to this day is still my favorite tropical drink. I always loved the pinks and red of the drink and thought it would be a fun colorway for yarn and wool.

Just after I dyed up this colorway, my friend Chantal said she needed a pair of custom socks for her niece in Africa and they NEEDED to be pink! Well, how perfectly timed is this?? I used Lava Flow in sock yarn and used black yarn for the personalization. I was told recently that Zozi loves her socks!!

 

Continuing with the food theme, this new colorway was inspired by a breakfast I had while visiting with an old colleague. Jake and I met my old Producer at a well known waffle place in the next town over and though I knew this was incredibly sinful, I couldn’t help myself. I ended up only eating half this (it was already a half portion), but the whipped cream and caramel sauce on top of crunchy waffles was so worth it! This is COCONUT CARAMEL PECAN WAFFLES and luckily the yarn and wool are zero calories!

 

This next one is another oldie-but-goodie and ironically, I was with the same Producer when I had this dessert! AVOCADO CHEESECAKE seemed rather odd to me when I was first presented with it at an Indian vegetarian restaurant.  But, after the first bite, I realized why it was such a hit. The raspberry and mango sauce were a nice touch and the creamy cheesecake was amazing.

 

The final two colorways were inspired by photos my parents took while visiting the Seattle Art Museum last fall. My parents love to travel and I always ask them to keep an eye out for interesting photos that I might create into yarn. Dad took these amazing photos and I am told they have even more for me from their most recent European trip!  This one is called FILMSTRIPS and apparently the artist took these rolls of film and handpainted (!) each one in different colors and patterns.  It definitely made me nostalgic for the days when you would take your rolls of 35mm film into the drugstore to get processed Рha!

 

The last colorway is AFRICAN ART TRIBUTE Рinspired by this wonderful exhibit showcasing African art and culture.  Dad snapped this photo and thought it would look great in yarn & wool! The exhibit is now closed, but my parents were grateful they were able to see it.

 

Now for some projects . . .

Back in January I posted a new colorway called CHINESE GARDEN. I used an immersion dyeing technique and was thrilled with the outcome that I ended up dyeing a skein for myself and knitted up a shawl using the Ghost Gardens Shawlette pattern by Kelene Kinnersly. I just love this pattern and already have plans to make another one!

I am fortunate to have a customer who loves my Yin Yang Socks and I’ve made a few for her already. She challenged me with translating the pattern into a hat and scarf for her. I finished the hat already and did a snug cap design. I’m still working on the scarf and am using a double-knit approach so the pattern is reversed on the back – so far it’s working well but it does take some brain power (at least for me!).

I have also been working on a few custom order socks and finished a pair just last night!

And a few spinning projects. . .

This one I knit into a pair of shorties socks and have quickly become one of my favorite pairs! It’s hard to see, but it’s a Rambouillet/Bright Nylon yarn so there is some sparkle in it. The colorway is BOX OF CHOCOLATES.

I’m in LOVE with Rambouillet wool and dyed up a braid in my SATURATED SPRING colorway. I spun this up in a laceweight yarn and don’t have a pattern in mind yet . . .

This was my submission for the June SPINNING BOX – the theme was Sunsets and I snapped this photo on Maui while hubby was driving. My submission included 1 oz of Merino/Tencel roving, a photo of WEST MAUI SUNSET and a Hawaiian Islands Mango Maui tea bag. I spun up a small sample for myself!

More to come, so check back soon! Mahalo Nui Loa!

Shoppe: AlohaBlu.com

FB page: www.facebook.com/AlohaBluShoppe

FB group: www.facebook.com/groups/alohablu.luau

Ravelry patterns: www.ravelry.com/designers/christina-rowell

Etsy shoppe: AlohaBlu.Etsy.com

Photos: society6.com/alohablu

IG: alohablu

Knitting, Photography, Yarn/Roving

Launching the new AlohaBlu.com!

Aloha! After much anticipation, my new website is live! For this site, I wanted to share the products I create, but also show you the images that inspire the colorways. So, the new www.AlohaBlu.com will be part shoppe / part gallery and I hope you enjoy the views.

The first colorway I posted was inspired by a photo taken last year on Maui. THE COLORFUL MR. G is a brightly colored gecko who we found sunbathing near our room. I dyed up some yarn and roving, and even created a video about the colorway which you can see on each product listing on the new shoppe.

THECOLORFULMRG_COLL_2017_03

The next colorway is a new take on an oldie-but-goodie: DARK UNIVERSE 2 uses similar dyes as the original, but these yarn skeins are kettle dyed rather than handpainted so they result in a wonderfully random pattern!

Years and years ago when I was first starting out in my film career, I was able to go on a ‘field trip’ with other team members to JPL (Jet Propulsion Laboratory) in Pasadena, CA. After getting information on space, stars, constellations and galaxies, we left with packets of material including fabulous photographs taken from high-powered telescopes. I was amazed at how colorful outer space was and this colorway¬†reminds me of those bright accents of color against a dark background.

I also created a video for this colorway, which can be seen on each of the product listings.

DARKUNIVERSE2_ALL

It’s time for MENEHUNE MINI’S! This set of 10x – 10 gram mini balls are from my European collection. These colorways were inspired by my travels through Italy, France and Switzerland. I’ve already wound them into center-pull balls so all you have to do is pull the top yarn and start crafting.

MINIS_EUROPE_01

Here are some of the inspirational photos that I took on my travels:

MINIS_EUROPE_COLL

Lastly, some extra skeins of immersion dyed yarn:

ROMANCE_VINAFERA_KPDK_05

LAPIS_DK_01

POTOFRAINBOW_SPORT_03

All available on the new AlohaBlu.com!

For sneak peeks and other videos, join the AlohaBlu Luau Facebook group at www.facebook.com/groups/alohablu.luau.

Knitting, Yarn/Roving

2016 Yarn & Fiber Colors – Weeks 6-11

Aloha!

I’ve been working on a few projects though knitting has been on the back burner as I’m nursing tendonitis in my left thumb. I am itching to get back to my needles! In the meantime, I thought I’d share some fun images.

First, the Winter 2015/2016 edition of Addicted to Sock Knitting eZine came out yesterday! Debra Garner is in charge of the magazine and asked if I was interested in being the featured designer for this edition Рgasp. So, not only am I interviewed but she used my image as the cover Рdouble gasp.  These are my YIN YANG socks and the pattern is included in the eZine.

ASK_Winter2015:2016_cover

This is one of my favorite dresses and thought it would be a fun accent to the sock photo. Here is a photo of me¬†in the dress back in 2006 . I can still fit into it so long as I don’t try to breathe, sit or move – otherwise, I’m good!

Core6_300

My interview starts on page 108 and is 8 pages long (lots of photos of my knitted socks). So honored to be a part of this publication again. Last year I was interviewed as an indie dyer, so I’m thrilled to be back as a designer!

Onto the colors!

January was a sad month as we lost some really amazing artists. One of them was the legendary icon David Bowie.  Yarn friend, Kloie, suggested I come up with a colorway to honor Mr. Bowie Рso I researched and found two images that would look great in yarn, but also showed different sides of the great man. Here are two colorways for the renegade and the gentleman:  REBEL BOWIE RED and BODACIOUS BOWIE BLU.

COLORWAYS18_2full

I then went back to some of my inspirational photos and found this one taken at the Long Beach Aquarium of the Pacific. These are LION’S MANE JELLYFISH!

LIONSMANEJELLYFISH_2016_02

Yarn friends have been asking me for mini skeins, and after doing the set for the Sock Yarn Swappers group on Ravelry last year, I started dyeing some for the shoppe. These are 10gram “Menehune Mini Skeins” that I’ve wound into balls, so all you have to do is pull the yarn on the top of the ball to starting using.¬†In Hawaiian mythology, the MENEHUNE were people of smaller sized who lived in the hidden parts of the islands in the forests and valleys. They were known to be very crafty people so I thought the title to be fitting.

The first set:

ALBL_Minis_Collage_2016_02

And the second:

MENEHUNE_MINIS_V2

These were so popular that I’m working on another set to be posted soon.

~~

Two SPIN THIS BOX editions have been released since my last posting.

February had a sweet theme and I used sw merino/nylon roving:

STB_FEB2016_SWMERNYLONR_01B

and I even dyed up some yarn to match . . .

COLORWAYS21

The March box was just released and has a bit of a lucky feel to it. I was even able to spin up a skein myself in wonderful Mixed BFL roving!

STB_2016_03_collage-spunyarn

I’m starting on April’s submission soon and will be using Merino/Silk roving – swoon!

~~

And, I promised last time I would show some weaving projects that I’ve done. Our friend, Nghia, gave me this amazing 32″ Ashford Rigid Heddle Loom for Christmas. He was aware of my yarn obsession and thought a loom would be a nice addition. I was completely surprised by the gift. I mean, I own an Ashford Joy wheel, Ashford hand carders and generally am a fan of the brand (almost got an Ashford Drum Carder but opted for a Patrick Green instead) – but he didn’t know this when he got my loom! Aren’t supportive friends the greatest?

Ok, so I put together the loom which is as wide as my dining table . . .

2016-01-08

and started on my first project, a scarf, in Minnesota Vikings colors, of course!

IMG_5157

After finishing that one, I wanted to make something for Nghia. I bought some darker colors and decided I needed  to try the clasp weft technique.  Here are my first two weaving projects!

Vikings_Nghia_Scarf

I just acquired a 12 dent reed so I can use sock yarn for weaving, so stay tuned for more fun images in the next post!

Much Aloha!

Knitting, Yarn/Roving

2015 Yarn & Fiber Colors – Weeks 42-49

Aloha and Happy December!

So excited for the holidays this year. Last year I was waist-deep in work and felt the holidays came and went so¬†I didn’t really have the opportunity to savor the season. This year, I’m taking it all in and even taking the “One gift for you, one gift for me” a bit too seriously (I know, I know – how many parkas do I really need?).

As is consistent with working in film, our jobs start & stop and this holiday season I’m ‘between jobs’ as they say, so I’m taking the opportunity to knit more, dye up more and maybe even get a jump on my taxes (well, it’s on the to-do list at least). ¬†I’ve been taking meetings/interviews so I’m excited for what the future holds!

Next year for AlohaBlu, I’m hoping to do a bit more pattern work, add some ‘Dyed to Order’ colorways on the shoppe, and folks have been asking for sock kits –¬†a skein of yarn for the body of the socks and a small skein for the toes, heels and cuffs – so I’m working on adding those as well.

Thanks so much for all your friendship and support. Without further ado, here are the colors for Weeks 42 – 49.

First, two of my sock patterns were published today on Knitpicks! These are my KANE SOCKS and my & hubby’s MAORI TATTOO SOCKS. This pair of Maori Tattoo Socks uses KP’s Ash yarn paired with my hand-dyed “Hawaiian Storm Clouds” yarn, and this pair is mine ūüôā

Maori_KanePatterns

Speaking of socks, here are a few I finished recently. TANGO SWERVE SOCKS were actually first done as a non-colorwork socks many years ago. In 2013, I thought I’d try a colorwork version, knitted one sock too tight, then threw it in the bottom of my UFO stash (Un-Finished Objects) because I didn’t want to deal with frogging (rip-it, rip-it) and re-knitting. Picked up the needles again this year – yup, 2 years later – and finished the pair. No pattern yet, but hopefully it won’t take another 2 years!

TANGOSWERVE_2015_11

This was a custom pair of my YIN YANG SOCKS. No pattern for this one yet but it was sure fun to make again.

YINYANGSOCKS_2015_11_custom

When folks contact me about these next socks, they¬†call them my “Wedding Socks” though they are¬†actually¬†a variation of my Sweetheart Socks pattern. This particular pair is a custom order for a bride getting married this year. She wanted the date on socks and I incorporated them into the back – what a great idea!!

SweetheartSocks_JenL_2015

Here’s the colorway I created for the November SPIN THIS BOX edition. This year, hubby and I spent my birthday on Oahu’s ‘Fabled North Shore’ at the Turtle Bay Resort. When I made the reservation, I told them we are returning customers who loved their resort. They gave us the honeymoon suite (complete with window from the bathtub to this view!). ¬†Man, I just love Hawaii.

ALBL-STB_NOV2015_BLUES-BRW_TURTLEBAY_POLMOHAIRSILK

Here’s the yarn I created in the same colorway – TURTLE BAY.

TURTLEBAY_SPARKLEF_02

Another fun thing I did recently was complete the 30 skeins in 30 colorways for the Sock Yarn Swappers Ravelry group. A few new colorways in there too!

AlohaBlu_MiniSkeins_2015

More colorways to come.

Happy Holidays to you and yours!

Knitting, Yarn/Roving

2015 Yarn & Fiber Colors – Weeks 24 – 28

Aloha!

Summer is in full swing and we’re¬†having beautiful days here in SoCal. I thought I’d start with a photo from our Hawaii trip back in May. This was taken¬†from a corridor window of the hotel where we stayed. The weather was just perfect for a hike around the bay.

IMG_0731

Now, onto colors! Continuing with the Hawaiian theme, here is WAIMEA ROOSTER, inspired by this lovely rooster I saw while up at Waimea Falls. ¬†After a 3/4 mile hike through botanical gardens you end at the falls where there is a bleacher-style seating area. This rooster was stalking a poor lady who was trying to get away from him! I, in turn, stalked him with a camera. I later learned this fella’s name is Waimea Willy.

WAIMEAROOSTER_2015_06

AMERICANA is a self-striping colorway in a muted tones. I have been wanting to knit up samples and bought one of those 9-inch circular needles that some sock knitters rave about and gave it a go. It was really nice being able to knit in the round without switching needles like I do with my circulars. I don’t think I’d switch completely as I really love 2 cirs for socks, but it was fun to try!

AMERICANA_CASHMCN_SS

The original RAINBOW PRIDE colorway was a custom order for last year’s Pride Week. After the 6/26/15 SCOTUS’s ruling, I’ve been dyeing up more of this self-striping yarn ;). ¬†This was my very first self-striping colorway!!

RAINBOWPRIDE_2015_07

Back in May,Hubby and I visited his parents in Ohio about a week before this crabapple tree bloomed. Mom-in-law took this fantastic photo of her tree and sent it to me so I can see how nicely the flowers came out. I thought it was so pretty that I had to try it out in a colorway! This is SUSIE’S CRABAPPLE TREE.

SusiesCrabappleTree_COLLAGE

My most favorite Broadway musical is The Phantom of the Opera (I know, totally clich√©, but I did grow up in the 80s . . . ) and the touring group finally made it’s way to Los Angeles this summer. Hubby and I went to a matinee showing at the Hollywood Pantages Theatre and had a great time.

Phantom

I remembered how much I loved ballet, even though I haven’t taken a class for a while. So, I started crocheting up some new bags for the shoppe. ¬†Here are some of the available ballet/pointe shoe bags. The shoes were ones I had ordered years ago and never wore so now they are great props.

This one was knitted with two strands of Highland wool held together.

BALLETBAG_BLUE.GRAY.HIGHLANDWOOL.01

This bag is made with hand-dyed wool for a fun tweed effect.

BALLETBAG_HANDDYEDSPUN_PINK.GREEN.BK.02

This was made with holding 2 strands together, one was a gradient yarn and the other was a solid.

BALLETBAG_BLUEMULTI.01

This one was made with a tweed wool yarn.

BALLETBAG_PINKTWEEDKNIT_01

This was fun to make – so bright! Two strands of Highland wool held together was used for this bag.

BALLETBAG_YEL.ORG.01

Some items still available @ www.AlohaBlu.com. Enjoy!

Knitting, Yarn/Roving

2015 Yarn & Fiber Colors – Weeks 6 – 12

Aloha!

Been a while since I’ve posted so I have a bunch of fun images to share.

First, the Spring Edition of “Addicted to Sock Knitting” eMagazine was released this week and I’m one of the featured dyers! ¬†Hubby helped take photos of me dyeing yarn in my studio. You can find the magazine on the Addicted to Sock Knitting website.

ASK_Spring2015_eZine

Along with the interview, there are photos of my colorcards¬†and favorite knitted socks I made for my Aunt Tina’s mother using hand-dyed purple yarn with my Hawaiian Tattoo Socks pattern.

il_fullxfull.282201500

I also contributed two colorwork sock patterns to the eZine. The A.S.K. Socks were designed just for this magazine  . . .

ASKSOCKS_LG_ORANGE-TEAL_02

ASKSOCKS_MED_MULTI_02 ASKSOCKS_MED_PUR-PINK_02

and the Flowers on A Fence Socks are more traditional colorwork socks.

FLOWERSONAFENCESOCKS_PINK-BRN_02

I’m truly excited to be part of such an amazing Facebook group and magazine.

 Now onto some colors! Here are the colors for weeks 6 Р12.  Some of these items are still available on the shoppe.

HAWAIIAN STORM CLOUDS is a new colorway that got me misty while dyeing it up. I guess I’m homesick and I love this photo of storm clouds rolling in over glassy teal water.

ALOHABLU_HAWAIIANSTORMCLOUDS_COLLAGE_2015_02

Of course dyeing up some STRAWBERRY PAPAYA didn’t help either since I added hunger to my homesickness ūüôā

StrawberryPapaya_Collage_2015_02

But I did remember how beautiful LANIKAI is and this braid was made from hand-dyed wool, drum carded then pulled off as roving.

LANIKAI_BATT_2015_02

Sunsets are supremely magical at DIAMONDHEAD.

DIAMONDHEADSUNSET2_COLORCARD_2015_01

I’m so very glad we live with such wonder all around us. ¬†I thought outer space may be void of color, but learned it’s just a DARK UNIVERSE. . .

DARKUNIVERSE_SS_SPARKLE_F_01

devoid of any TREES . . .

TREES_QTR_R_01

OCEANS . . .

OCEANS_2015_03

or BIG ISLAND VOLCANOes.

BigIslandVolcano_2015_03

Ha ha ha! Ok, enough with the seriousness. Here are a couple more I dyed up:

PARISIAN SUNSET in targhee and firestar

PARISIAN_SUNSET_2014_12

WINTERGREEN kettle-dyed lace yarn

WINTERGREEN_SPARKLEL_01

STAINED GLASS ALTAR

STANEDGLASSALTAR_SPARKLEL_01

And another new colorway in lace yarn, MAD SCIENTIST: M.A.B.V (magenta, aqua, black, violet – yes, very creative of me . . . )

MADSCIENTIST_MABV_BFLYL_03

Last December someone on Twitter sent me a photo of a beautiful bird and thought I could capture its color in yarn. I dyed¬†a few skeins and posted one skein on Facebook. I sold the yarn before it was ever posted on the shoppe then proceeded to get inquiries about custom orders. ¬†I’m so happy to be spending my time dyeing up more TANAGER colorways.

TANAGER_SHEILA_F_04

The last post for this entry is one that I’m super proud to show. My hubby, Jake, directed a VR (virtual reality) project called “theBlu: Encounter” that was released at a big gaming conference (Game Developers Conference “GDC”) this month. ¬†theBlu starts with the viewer on the deck of a shipwreck with sealife all around – manta rays, schools of fish. ¬†I was able to move to the end of the deck and look at the rocky ocean bottom below. Even though I knew I was in a room in a building on dry land, I couldn’t help but get a bit nervous about being on the ledge of a ship!

As I turned to my left, a gigantic blue whale was swimming towards me. A. GIGANTIC. BLUE. WHALE. SWIMMING. TOWARDS. me. . . The whale stopped right in front of me and with his basketball-sized eye looked me over. He then turned with his pectoral fin to swim right over me as I ducked away.  His fluke pushed downward almost hitting the ship, propelling him to swim away. The force of his tail sent the mast of the ship wobbling so I ducked again thinking it would hit me.

As the whale swam into the ‘sunset’, my heart was pounding from this Encounter. I grabbed the headpiece to take it off when hubby said “Let’s do it again!” – this time he had me step even closer to the whale.

It was such an amazing experience that of course, I had to re-create that experience in yarn! Here is theBlu, in honor of my hubby and the hardworking crew of WeVR studios.

theBlu_Collage_2015_03

Enjoy!

Knitting, Yarn/Roving

Nomination for the Creative Blog Hop

Aloha all! I was nominated by the incomparable Debra Garner on her blog for the creative Blog Hop. I will be answering 4 questions about crafting and then nominate fabulous individuals to do the same.

What am I working on?

I’m currently working on a pair of FLAG SOCKS: USA for fiber friend, Alison’s mom. I’m a bit farther along than this photo and should be done very soon!

Socks_CustomUSA

Of course I have many projects in progress as well and below is a photo of projects that I switch back and forth.

The front sock is being made from my self-striping “Zinnia” colorway yarn. The black yarn is Knitpicks’ Stroll and the pattern is called “Diamonds In the Rough” and is not yet available.

The top left sock is one of my very first designs, though I originally designed it for non-colorwork. Since I LOVE colorwork so much, I’m adapting the pattern using my hand-dyed gray/purple as the base and a beautiful Pagewood Farms yarn as the accent. The pattern is called “Tango Swerve” and is not yet available.

Top right¬†sock is being knitted using my hand-dyed yarn both in a merino/bamboo base, I believe. The pattern is called “Smocked Socks” and is not yet available.

Socks_WIP

I started my very first shawl project this summer! The pattern is by Emily Ross, called “Biltmore“, and after visiting the Biltmore Estate a few years ago I fell in love with it just as Emily had. It is a rectangular shawl which is perfect and the yarn is my hand-dyed “Monet’s House” colorway. This colorway was a custom request from a Facebook group called Yet Another Shawl. I just love seeing the different shawls all the ladies are making with Monet’s House – such talented knitters and crocheters in that group!

BiltmoreShawl_MonetsHouse

I’m also working on dyeing up custom yarn orders and will have more on the shoppe soon!

 Question 2: How does my work differ from others of its genre?

One of the great things about being passionate about yarn and fiber is that I’m also a fan of other indie dyers, designers and creators. We all have a different ‘eye’ for design or color and I am amazed at how everyone expresses themselves in different ways.

When I started dyeing yarn and wool, I needed inspiration and decided that all those vacation photos that I took might be the ticket! So, I scoured my files Рsome digital, some real paper photos Рand practiced replicating those colors in wool.  I found I really enjoyed it, and having a hubby who is a professional artist is great for asking questions about mixing colors, combinations, etc. I try my best to impress him with my creations!

Here are a few of my photos and the yarn/wool I created from the image.

GLACIERBAY2_SELFSTRIPE_PLATF_2014

 WestMauiSunset_COLLAGE_2014_02

MRBUTTERFLY_COLORCARD_2013_11

STAINEDGLASSALTAR_COLLAGE_2014_01

 Question 3: Why do I create what I do?

At first I started knitting as a stress reliever from a high-paced, high-stress (but equally fun) career. I found I enjoyed knitting and once I learned how to knit socks, the passion for yarn escalated. I joined the KnitPicks Community and was soon learning about yarn spinning and yarn dyeing. Funny enough, my first thoughts were “Why on earth would someone want to dye their own yarn when you can buy it already dyed?” . . . followed by “Why on earth would someone want to spin their own yarn when you can buy it already spun?”.

The answer is of course: because you love it. I create because I absolutely love it. After finding the passion for yarn I have found that I love sharing my passion with others, and the fiber friends I’ve met in person and online are kindred spirits that¬†never cease to amaze me with their constant support and kind-hearted generosity.

WML_ForShoppe

Question 4: How does my creative process work?

I am inspired by everything around me. Whether that be the Winter Olympics Opening Ceremonies, walking to lunch and seeing vibrant flowers, vacation photos or other photos that fiber friends send me, I’m always thinking of the next colorway or design.

Once I have a colorway in mind, I write down the dye colors I think would match what I have envisioned in my mind and let it marinate in my head for about a week. After a week, I come back to the written ‘formula’ and see if any changes need to be made. Then the experimenting begins.

Dyeing_KaisDragon

I can usually get the colors close the first time around (since it’s been marinating in my head for a week) though I have had to make some adjustments on the fly if the dye doesn’t turn out the way I want. The photo above is a colorway that will be on the shoppe soon, called Kai’s Dragon, which I created based on a drawing my godson Kai did for my birthday card.

Here’s my original colorway:

 KAI'SDRAGON_COLLAGE_2014_02

I hope you’ve enjoyed learning a little bit about me. ¬†I can’t wait to learn more about my nominees, Sue of soobeeart,¬†¬†Jenny of Marigoldjen¬†(Marigoldjen on Ravelry) and Susanne of SussesSpindehjrne (SmilendeSusse on Ravelry).

Mahalo nui loa,

christina