Guinea Pig Creative, and Poll Winner!

Thanks to everyone who took my poll on Maryland Sheep & Wool. It’s so helpful for me to get feedback, and I really appreciate it! The winner of the random drawing from the comments here on the blog is: Paula! Who I’ve now emailed and the yarn and pompom are on their way to her!

This past Wednesday evening, I had a group of local friends over to the studio to dye silk scarves. I had some different techniques I wanted to try out for a class, and thought testing it out on friends would be a great plan. That way, if it didn’t work out well, I wouldn’t have wasted people’s money in taking the class.

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Guinea Pig Creative at Spirit Trail Fiberworks Studio

 

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Talking color possibilities

 

I emailed and asked if they’d be my “guinea pigs,” and thankfully they were happy to oblige. I especially wanted them to help me because none of them have ever used dyes like this before, so they were newbies to the process. Jeez, we had so much fun, and decided we need to get together every couple of months for a night of group creativity. And Jen Perrot made it official when she dubbed us “Guinea Pig Creative.”

These ladies are not only a whole lot of fun, kind, generous and just super people, they’re all artists, too. So, I thought I’d introduce them because, if you’re ever in Rappahannock County, VA, most of them have great places to visit, and some are on the Artists of Rappahannock Studio & Gallery Tour (every year, the first full weekend in November:

Patti Brennan of De’Danann Glassworks is an amazing stained glass artist (we met when my husband gave me stained glass classes for Christmas nearly 10 years go; what a great Christmas present, right?!). She has weekend workshops and is one of the driving forces (probably THE driving force) behind the Rappahannock Artisan Trail and our new Second Saturday Open Door Tour monthly events.

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Patti’s scarf (looks rather like stained glass, doesn’t it?)

Kat Habib creates beautiful hand-built ceramics at Kat Habib Ceramics, using various firing methods the create really stunning and unique pieces, which are for sale in the Flourish Roots shop (see below).

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Kat’s scarf

<p style=" margin:8px 0 0 0; padding:0 4px;"> <a href="https://www.instagram.com/p/BQllG-kD1RL/&quot; style=" color:#000; font-family:Arial,sans-serif; font-size:14px; font-style:normal; font-weight:normal; line-height:17px; text-decoration:none; word-wrap:break-word;" target="_blank">My first hand dyed silk scarf! Thank you for having me as a guinea pig @spirittrailfiberworks!! It was a great class and I'd happily play in your studio for hours! Such a gift to live in this talented and warm community.</a></p> <p style=" color:#c9c8cd; font-family:Arial,sans-serif; font-size:14px; line-height:17px; margin-bottom:0; margin-top:8px; overflow:hidden; padding:8px 0 7px; text-align:center; text-overflow:ellipsis; white-space:nowrap;">A post shared by Kat Habib (@kat.habib) on <time style=" font-family:Arial,sans-serif; font-size:14px; line-height:17px;" datetime="2017-02-16T21:14:43+00:00">Feb 16, 2017 at 1:14pm PST</time></p></div></blockquote> //platform.instagram.com/en_US/embeds.js“>Kat’s scarf on Instagram

Heidi Morf, who used to own Four and Twenty Blackbirds (a phenomenal restaurant in Flint Hill, VA), and then Twenty Four Crows (cafe and gift shop), creates phenomenal stained glass art, mosaics, lamp work beads. Right now she shows her work at other studios, including Patti’s; we’re hoping she builds herself a studio so we can go play with her art supplies, too. heheh.

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Heidi’s first scarf, which we thought might have been over-saturated but turned out so incredible. 

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Heidi’s second scarf (this was actually the under-color of the first scarf before she added the other colors!)

Karen Mosebrook owns Morningside Farms Nursery with her husband, and Cocoa Manna, where she creates hand-roasted cocoa beans and brewing chocolate (sort of a coffee “alternative,” but more than just an alternative … I like it mixed with coffee!). She’s now also getting into handmade artisanal chocolates, and I can’t wait to see how this develops (and to be HER chocolate-making guinea pig later this year!).

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Karen’s scarf. So pretty.

<p style=" margin:8px 0 0 0; padding:0 4px;"> <a href="https://www.instagram.com/p/BQnkZQ9Bi1n/&quot; style=" color:#000; font-family:Arial,sans-serif; font-size:14px; font-style:normal; font-weight:normal; line-height:17px; text-decoration:none; word-wrap:break-word;" target="_blank">Special thanks to @spirittrailfiberworks for the silk scarf dying class, it was a total blast! @flourishrootflorals @heritagehollowfarms @dedanannglass .</a></p> <p style=" color:#c9c8cd; font-family:Arial,sans-serif; font-size:14px; line-height:17px; margin-bottom:0; margin-top:8px; overflow:hidden; padding:8px 0 7px; text-align:center; text-overflow:ellipsis; white-space:nowrap;">A post shared by Karen Mosebrook (@cocoamanna) on <time style=" font-family:Arial,sans-serif; font-size:14px; line-height:17px;" datetime="2017-02-17T15:46:57+00:00">Feb 17, 2017 at 7:46am PST</time></p></div></blockquote> //platform.instagram.com/en_US/embeds.js“>Karen’s Scarf on Instagram

Jen Perrot of Flourish Root Florals creates absolutely gorgeous floral arrangements, wreaths and other pieces. In addition to her own floral arrangements for weddings, special events, and special order, her shop also features Kat’s beautiful ceramics.

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Jen’s scarf. This one was the biggest surprise, because Jen started with an under color of khaki green, adding a burgundy and brown overlay which ended up covering the green entirely. But, the green gives it a depth it wouldn’t otherwise have. 

<p style=" margin:8px 0 0 0; padding:0 4px;"> <a href="https://www.instagram.com/p/BQnXM8Ilp4t/&quot; style=" color:#000; font-family:Arial,sans-serif; font-size:14px; font-style:normal; font-weight:normal; line-height:17px; text-decoration:none; word-wrap:break-word;" target="_blank">#creative #collaboration with dear friends in my village….#lucky to be surrounded by so much talent…. . . My first hand dyed scarf…and I'm hooked. #thankyou @spirittrailfiberworks for sharing an evening &amp; happy to be a #guineapig . . and so begins the #guineapigcreative collective of dear friends &amp; sweet souls… . . #flourishroot #florals #makesomething #handcrafted #artisan #makesmehappy #makesmesmille #thisiswhatwedo</a></p> <p style=" color:#c9c8cd; font-family:Arial,sans-serif; font-size:14px; line-height:17px; margin-bottom:0; margin-top:8px; overflow:hidden; padding:8px 0 7px; text-align:center; text-overflow:ellipsis; white-space:nowrap;">A post shared by Flourish Root Florals (@flourishrootflorals) on <time style=" font-family:Arial,sans-serif; font-size:14px; line-height:17px;" datetime="2017-02-17T13:51:41+00:00">Feb 17, 2017 at 5:51am PST</time></p></div></blockquote> //platform.instagram.com/en_US/embeds.js“>Jen’s Scarf on Instagram

Molly Peterson is a talented photographer, farmer, and co-owner of Heritage Hollow Farms with her husband, Mike. They have a farm store next to Flourish Root Florals, where they sell their pasture-raised meats, some of Molly’s photographs and notecards, candles from a local candle maker, and other local products.

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Molly’s scarf. Like clouds and a rich summer sky.

It’s really cool how each scarf really reflects the art of its owner. Even if that wasn’t on purpose, it obviously leaks through!

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One of the fun aspects of dyeing scarves is not being entirely sure what will happen in the dye process. There’s an alchemy that isn’t completely controllable. Which I believe is one of the reasons I really enjoy dyeing scarves the way I do; it’s a process I can’t completely control. And that’s good for me, when most of my other dyeing is very controlled and purposeful.

And that’s a run down of Guinea Pig Creative. Stay tuned for more photos of our creative group activities. Next time it might be Pysanky (Ukranian) egg decorating, for Easter and the Spring Equinox.

Posted in Give Aways, Guinea Pig Creative, Silk Scarves, Spirit Trail Studio | 1 Comment

Maryland Sheep & Wool Festival!

UPDATE: Paula is the winner of the random drawing for the yarn and pompom. Thanks, everyone, for taking the poll! I appreciate the feedback!

Maryland Sheep & Wool Festival will be upon us soon and, as I do every year, I’m struggling to decide which yarn bases to bring. My booth at Maryland is so much smaller than my booth at New York Sheep & Wool, and it’s difficult knowing I can’t bring everything with me. Last year, rather than try to cram as much as possible into the booth I decided to leave some bases at home. It was a good plan, and I’m going to do the same this year. But this time around, I thought I’d have a poll so you, my dear customers and friends, can give me input on what you’d most like to see at the Festival.

Some bases are already off the table: Vesta (really, who needs bulky Merino in May, in Maryland?), Maeve (bulky merino/cashmere, again with the bulky in May), and Tayet and Decima, because they’re gone. But everything else is still in the mix.

So, I’d love all the feedback I can get. If you’re heading to MDSW, which bases would you most like to see in my booth? Complete the following survey and you’ll be entered to win a fun prize (photo down at the bottom of this post). Click on your favorite bases, or the ones you’d most like to see in my booth.

 

The poll will be open until February 18, 2017. To be entered to win, take the poll and then leave me a comment letting me know you’ve taken it. I’ll draw a random winner from the comments.

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Prize: One skein of Spirit Trail Verdande in Graphite (220 yards worsted weight merino / cashmere / silk) with a fun complimentary pompom (100% vegan!) in charcoal and teal blue.

Thanks for helping me decide what to bring to MDSW!

Posted in Give Aways, Maryland Sheep & Wool Festival | 42 Comments