I get asked a lot… How did you get started in the yarn business? What made you think of it? How did you learn to dye yarn, etc?
So here’s the answer, which may surprise you.
I like to think of it as “going with the flow.”
I’ve crocheted since I was 9, but just started knitting a few years ago when I was 27.
I loved it SOOO much that I would sit and knit for hours on end, attempting to be as quick and amazing as the Yarn Harlot, Cat Bordhi, Wendy Johnson and many MANY others.
It was a sad time in my life. I was closed off to life. I held in tons of pain and wasn’t truly living. I felt pretty miserable most of the time and I have only myself to blame. I could have chosen differently, but I didn’t. I chose the pain. I chose the suffering. I can see that now.
But back then, I couldn’t see that. I only saw through a murky fog of disillusionment and disappointment.
But I had my newly-found love of knitting. And it gave me so much joy.
I would pour through Ravelry patterns for hours on end. I would read knitting blogs till my eyes raggedly shut at the end of a long day.
I’d knit until my hands screamed with pain. Literally.
I began knitting so much that my wrists gave out one day.
One day while home alone, with nothing else to do, I sat and knit for 10 hours straight, watching Far and Away, I Love Lucy and Little House on the Prairie.
By the end of that, my hands were throbbing with heat and pain. My wrists were shot. My arms were shooting icy hot pain all the way up to my elbow.
I couldn’t type on my computer properly for weeks.
I couldn’t knit.
I was again miserable. The one thing that had brought me joy, was now bringing me pain.
I had taken up spinning as well, but even that hurt my hands.
Frustrated, I ordered in some undyed yarn, bought some kool-aid packets and Wilton cake dyes, and began to dye my own yarn and roving.
It was the only thing I could do with fiber that didn’t make my hands and arms rebel with rage.
And I was in love. All over again. Maybe even more so. My nature loves instant gratification. And seeing the colors pop onto the yarn immediately, was like heaven.
The options were endless.
I could dye up any color I could dream up.
And it didn’t hurt my hands.
And slowly, as my hands healed, I began to make things with them. Little by little.
Fast forward past my divorce and 4,000 mile move to Alaska…
I found myself needing money. (Don’t we all)
I coasted for nearly a year, but I knew my savings wouldn’t last forever.
So one day while reading T. Harv Eker’s Millionaire Mindset, I had one of those “epiphany” things.
I asked myself what I would do everyday if money were no object. And I just knew.
I would have a state-of-the-art yarn dyeing studio in San Diego, California. Huge windows. Vast counters with stainless steel sinks. Rooms full of yarn. Positive, helpful peeps. Maybe someday a physical yarn shop, complete with endless rows of the most beautiful yarn the world had ever seen (I like hyperbole!), coffee shop, fireplace and love.
Why San Diego popped in my head, I do not know. I’m still in Alaska.
So I began dyeing a few shades and listing them on Ebay and Etsy. Got my actual shop up.
But I was still living in fear. I didn’t want to spend too much on my lil’ biz for fear I wouldn’t make it back.
So I got a job… such wonderful people and such a great job. But I knew it wasn’t my calling. I just had to dye yarn. I just HAD to.
So I quit my job after 7 months and started up yarn dyeing full time.
It was now or never.
Succeed or die! (My dramatic side coming out again).
It was a bumpy road, but little by little, sales began trickling in and then more and then more… And now here we are.
Now that I look back… would I be sitting here today, typing this blog post, telling this story, if I hadn’t experienced that horrendous wrist pain years ago, which forced me to start dyeing yarn?
I don’t know.
Maybe. Maybe not.
Life is funny…I think it’s all about going with the flow.
Listening to the calling of your heart.
Walking on in spite of your fears.
Moving in the direction of your dreams.
Opening up to life and all its possibilities.
I don’t have the big-windowed-stainless-steel-sink studio yet. But I don’t need it.
I’m so content right now. Things are as they should be at this time in life. And I’m blessed. And happy.
Yes, I’ve experienced pain along the way. And fear. And lots of doubt. But I kept walking on. And I can smile at it all now, from a knowing, centered place.
There are ups and downs still yet to come and I’m ready for them.
My hope today is that whatever your dream is, you set your eyes upon it and walk steadily toward it until it’s manifested in your life.
I pray you throw off self-doubt and fully embrace who you are. That you love yourself and open up to life… There is so much in store for you.
I’m sending you lots of love right now.