Making That Connection

Driving home the other week from back-to-back trunk shows, I was on an absolute high.  The owner of one of the shops had said to me that she thought that trunk shows were so much fun because her customers really liked making that conection to the dyer.  And as I thought about it, I knew she was right.  We so often think of knitting and crochet as being about projects, being about rows, about yarn and needles and hooks and all that stuff.  But there’s one thing that none of that covers, and it’s maybe more important than any of it.

It’s All About The Connection

So often, what it’s really about is connection.  Yes, most days we knit in solitude — but we always make sure we can get away to knit night.  And we upload our WIPs to Ravelry, and check out the projects of others who are making the same pattern or using the same yarn.  And the yarn… yes, the yarn.  There are miles and miles of beautiful, even, predictable commercial yarns to choose from…  but so often we gravitate toward a skein of yarn that has been dyed by hand, by a real person who put as much care into the colours of that skein as we put into every stitch of our projects.

SpaceCadet Creations Stella yarn in Plume, for knitting and crochetStella fingering yarn in Plume


And as I drove home, I realised that that connection is just as important to me.  In the same way that you knit or crochet for a someone special — for a friend, for your sister, for a colleague, or even for yourself — when I dye, I’m not thinking of the yarn, I’m thinking of the people who are going to use it.   I can see the projects in my mind, and I know the wonderful fiber-zen that this yarn will carry.  Just as you love knowing your yarn comes from a real person, so I love knowing it will be used by a real person, in a project they will love.  I crave that connection too.

So imagine my excitement this week when I discovered that two of my customers (one new, one long-time) have created their own video-podcasts!  It was such a delight to finally “meet” these lovely, warm, down-to-earth ladies I’ve been sending my yarns to.  And I began immediately to wish we lived closer, so we could sit down and have a proper natter over a cup of tea and our knitting.

The connection is everything.


 The Podcasts

This is Amanda and here’s what I love about her podcast, We Are Yarn:  the way she asks for help on the stuff that’s stumping her, the lovely things she says about SpaceCadet yarns and her InterStellar Yarn Alliance parcel (at 14:24), her beautiful Tennessee accent, and the cat with the swishy-swishy tail on her couch.

The We Are Yarn podcast talks about SpaceCadet Creations yarn


And this is Melissa in her Single-Handed Knits podcast.  I love that I can almost smell the Hawaiian sea breezes blowing through her window, and I love the wonderful things she says about her SpaceCadet Mini-Skein Club parcel (at 13:24).  I love that she actually does knit with one hand, and I love love love her incredibly positive outlook.

The Single-Handed Knits Podcast talks about SpaceCadet Creations yarn


Two More Ways to Connect

Trunk Show in Erie PA

First, don’t forget that I’ll be doing a trunk show this Saturday, June 2, at The Cultured Purl in Erie PA. If you’re anywhere in the area, please do come and meet the yarn — and I’d really love to meet you too!

Send Me a Video-Introduction!

But, better than that, Amanda and Melissa’s podcasts gave me an idea.  If we haven’t met (or even if we have), I’d love it — love it, love it, loooove it — if you’d video-introduce yourself to me.  Flip on that webcam, grab your SpaceCadet yarn, and for 30 seconds, just record yourself.  Say hello, tell me who you are (and who you are on Ravelry), show me your yarn or — better yet! — your projects, and then fire it off to me in an email or on Twitter.   (I have a little nugget of an idea that, one day — if it’s ok with you guys — I could take these little clips and do a video mash up showing off all the great projects you all have made with your SpaceCadet yarn.)

But far more important than that, it would just be so cool for me to be able to meet you guys — to make that connection that means so much to all of us.

Podcasts: Fibery Goodness Whispered in Your Ear

When I finally bought an MP3 player last year, I thought I’d be using it to listen to music, but it turns out that what I really listen to are fiber podcasts.   I love ’em!  Ever since I discovered there were these people out there just talking away about knitting, spinning, weaving, and dyeing, I’ve been addicted.  Who wouldn’t be?  A nearly endless source of people who get it and are right there, on tap, ready at any time of day or night to whisper in my ear about all thing fibery — while I’m doing the dishes or sweeping the floor or stuck in traffic or inexplicably wide awake in the dead of night.  Who wouldn’t be hooked?!?

Well… ok, I know there are a lot of people who wouldn’t be, but that’s only because they’re not fiber freaks like you and I.  In fiberista terms,the people who matter are the people who understand the allure of fiber, and that’s me, and you …and the podcasters.  Here are some of my absolute favourites:

Cast-On from Brenda Dayne is the first fiber podcast I discovered and I think it is the absolute best — a benchmark for all other podcasters to work toward.  Thoughtful, whimsical, educational, and always so beautifully put together, Cast-On is always a treat.  Brenda is taking a sabbatical at the moment to recover from some health issues but, if you’ve never listened, it’s worth working your way through the archives while we wait for her return.

FiberBeat is what I imagine the B-52s would come up with if they decided to record a fiber podcast.  WonderMike has created a zany podcast that, while always full of interesting interviews, news, and information, is also chock full of crazy random audio madness that has me laughing out loud.  You’ll have to listen to see what I mean, but that’s no hardship.

Insubordiknit from spinning artist  Jacey Boggs is a rare treat — rare because she produces episodes randomly and seldom, but a treat because they are so completely worth the wait.  Jacey is famous in the fiber world for her art yarns — unique, creative, and stunning… but always stable and balanced.  Listening to her talk through their creation is wonderfully inspiring.

These great podcasters keep me wrapped in fibery goodness even when I can’t be spinning or knitting — a wonderful thing.    And you know what?  I’d like to find more fiber podcasts just like them!   What are your favourite podcasts?   Who should I be listening to?  I’d love to know.