Buckaloo View Yarns (And Other Fiber Talk)
I should start by saying this post is not a "grand opening" announcement! I just want to address some things on Buckaloo View yarns and indeed let you know when they will be available. As well as talk a bit about fiber, in general.
Right now is a powerful time to be involved in the fiber world as it seems the "slow" movement is gaining momentum here. More and more knitters and fiber lovers are going back to traditional yarns, pure fibers from small farms that are dyed naturally, spun by hand or processed minimally in smaller, independent mills. I think we like that our fiber has a story, that fiber has a history.
Ashley of Woolful has been pretty great in getting the word out about superwash (and slow fiber, in general.) I've come across a lot of knitters who are purging their stashes of superwash by selling or donating it, after they learn the truth behind its production. I personally have some superwash as well as wool/synthetic blends in my stash and don't plan on parting with them so quickly. And, in all truth, I'll probably still buy the occasional superwash yarn in the future. I know some of you hardcore purists might not respect that, but that is what feels right to me now. First, there are a lot of indie dyers I'd like to support. But mostly, I'd like to start knitting more for family and friends but what often holds me back is their reluctance to have a 100% wool product to care for (or to wear against their skin.) For myself, I'm usually drawn towards pure, natural fiber. But since I've been knitting socks for well over half a year, I see the need for hardier yarn. Reaching for something superwash or with a bit of nylon in it is the easiest option. However, I do hope to challenge myself to research more breed-specific wool*, find ones known for producing fiber that is more hardy and long-lasting. My personal fiber journey will no doubt evolve as I redefine what I want and what I stand for, both for myself and for my stash.
However, this is all in regard to my own personal stash. When it comes to Buckaloo View yarns, I've drawn a clearer line. A while back, I made the decision to not dye any of future yarns with superwash or any other synthetic materials. It seems a little counterproductive to me to go through the process of dyeing yarn naturally on not-so-natural materials. And once I get footing, I'd like to dye on locally or ethically sourced yarn, perhaps yarn that I or another individual hand spun. (And perhaps someday, way down the line, I can offer my own plant dyed, hand spun, home raised fiber. That'll be quite a while though!)
Right from the beginning of my natural dye journey, I've been getting my color straight from plants. It never occurred to me to buy dyes, even if they were natural. What interested me most was throwing a handful of flowers or walnuts in a pot and getting the color directly from them. So, in the past and in the future, I will always dye directly from plants. In the beginning, I thought of limiting myself to only using plants and materials that I sourced locally, things that I or my neighbors and friends grew or gathered. But I've decided I'd like to keep my options (and palette) more open and include kitchen scraps such as avocado pits and onions skins. Once again, this is a process I'll grow with, seeing how things are received, how I feel in my heart about my choices, how much dye material I can get my hands on this coming season, etc.
Some of you may have seen a few fellow bloggers and knitters playing around with Buckaloo View yarn. I sent a small handful of skeins out into the wilds to see how they do. As of right now, I'm aiming to open the shop on the Spring Equinox. It seems fitting. So, March 20th, the Buckaloo View Shop will open! I'll have some of the 2014 Collection available right away, and hopefully have some early season yarns available. But after they are gone, you'll have to wait until I can dye new yarns.
PS: Thank you for all the Henny Hat love! I've started a Henny KAL if you'd like to join in!
*I'm really excited about this challenge and hope we can all share sources we've found, as well as our experiences and opinions on different breeds. There is a "Yarn Talk" thread at the BV group to do just that!