Posts Tagged ‘Giveaway’
July 17, 2013
Thanks to everyone who participated in the giveaway to receive four ounces of fiber from Ollie’s first shearing! It was heartwarming to read all of the comments you left, many of which touched me deeply. Your support means a lot to both me and Ollie!
The winner of this special gift is:
Linda: My favorite moment(s) included the pictures of him being readied for his ride in the van. The spinning bug bit me this spring when I purchased a spindle, soon a wheel came home with me. Thanks to an outstanding bargain on Craigslist, I now own a second wheel and hand carders. I’ve fallen into the spinning “rabbit hole” and am loving it. Ollie will be gratefully received and lovingly spun!
Thanks again to everyone who participated!
July 12, 2013
Last week, we saw Ollie get sheared! Let’s talk now about what I’ll do with his very precious first fiber gift to me.
The possibilities are nearly endless, but since this is his very first shearing, and thusly the most lovely (alpacas have only one baby shearing in their entire lives and it’s the best fiber they will ever produce!), I have some very special plans for it.
The very first thing I did was send a bit of seconds and thirds to my favorite needlefelter on Etsy, Bella McBride of McBride House, who used pictures as a guide for making a one-of-a-kind needlefelted sculpture of Ollie from his own fleece! *brain explodes* So cool!
With the rest of his fiber, I hope to learn to card and spin so that I can process it myself into yarn, and then make something from it.
Being a city girl, the full-circle experience of owning an animal, caring for it, garnering a tangible product from it, and turning that product into an item that I processed and made entirely myself is new to me. New and wonderful! And I want to share that joy with you all.
So, to close the Ollie Series, I have a surprise for all of you loyal fans of Ollie as a thank-you for being so faithful over these many months while his story was told. To one lucky person, I am giving away four ounces of fiber from Ollie’s precious first shearing!
That’s right! Four ounces of the very fiber you saw being sheared in last week’s post, the very best fiber Ollie will ever have in his lifetime, is what will arrive at your doorstep! WOW! It will be raw straight from Ollie as if you had been there with me during his shearing and I simply gifted it to you as it was removed (no dirt removal, carding, or spinning having been done), so that you can have endless possibilities with some of Ollie’s fiber, too!
To enter, just leave a comment here to tell me about your favorite moment in the Ollie Series and what you would do with Ollie’s fiber, and we’ll announce the winner next week!
May 22, 2013
Thanks to everyone who participated in our mutual blog giveaway with Loop, London! (See our interview with Loop, London here and the reciprocal interview Loop, London did with us here.) We had so many creative and clever comments all discussing the shiny wonderfulness that is Blue Sky Alpacas Metalico yarn!
Lee (from Loop, London’s blog): I have never knit with BSA, but am already planning how to get to your shop to have a feel of these yarns. The Metalico range looks like a wonderful combination of ‘natural’ and ‘sophisticated’. I would love to knit the Daisy Wrap to keep my daughter warm as she breastfeeds her baby (soon to be born) in the middle of the night. Not that she’ll need to be sophisticated then! But she could also wear it on her first night out with her partner after the birth.
Patsy (from Blue’s Blog): Metalico looks stunning and would love to knit with. All 3 patterns are amazing but love the Frances.
Congratulations to the winners, who will receive their choice of one of our 1920s-inspired Metalico wrap patterns (Daisy, Frances, or Zelda) and enough Metalico yarn to complete their project! Thanks again for participating, everyone!
May 17, 2013
Today, I am traveling halfway around the world for our first international shop interview! We are in London, but, more specifically, we are in Islington on Camden Passage. It is a narrow, historic street that is only accessible on foot and is famous for its old unique charm and twice-weekly antique market.
Now that we’ve oriented ourselves, let’s check in with today’s interviewee: Loop, London’s owner, Susan Cropper!
Jillian: Hi, Susan! Thank you so much for talking with me today and for being our first international shop interview! Your shop has been open for almost eight years, but let’s go back to the beginning. Can you tell me how you came up with the name for your shop?
Susan: I came up with the name of my shop after weeks of brainstorming with family and friends. I wanted something short and “loop” was perfect in that it reflected what the yarn was doing in a sense—a series of loops.
Jillian: Indeed, loops are important in knitting, crochet, weaving… almost all fiber arts. And it’s hard to get much shorter than four letters!
Susan: Haha, true! Funnily enough, Craig from Loop in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania must have had the same idea, as we opened around the same time and have the same name. I like his shop and he’s a lovely guy, but our shops are actually very different! Both great shops, but in their own ways!
Jillian: Absolutely. Now, let’s go back even farther! How did your love for all things textile evolve?
Susan: When I was young, my mom went back to art school to study Interior Design and there were always mood boards strewn around our apartment and stacks of design magazines. I was dragged around the Museum of Modern Art and the Decorative & Design Building in NYC on weekends.
Susan: My mom saved up to get a pair of Mies van der Rohe Barcelona chairs and then started weaving. Suddenly, there was a huge wooden loom in our living room and hanks of yarn drying in the bathroom, which she had dyed with cochineal and plants that she sent off for. I think I must have become a designer and textile junkie by osmosis. I knit. I love to knit lacy shawls most of all.
Jillian: I am still practicing many techniques in knitting, and lacy shawls are still something I have to master! Clearly, this interest in textiles and design followed you into adult life.
Susan: Oh, yes. I studied both Textile Design and Graphic Design, and, before Loop, while raising my three children, I was a designer and director for lifestyle magazines in London. I love to go to design fairs, vintage fairs, and flea markets wherever I am.
Jillian: It is no surprise, then, that this love of texture, design, color, and textiles led you to opening a shop! How was the response?
Susan: Enormous, from both press and customers! It has been so much fun to teach so many hundreds of people to knit, watching their excitement grow as they see what they can do. And, it is gratifying to hear the exclamations of delight as people come into the shop—I want people to find joy in colour, texture, and design as much as I do. I feel proud of the contribution we make to the knitting community.
Jillian: It certainly sounds delightful. What types of activities do you have at your shop?
Susan: We have a huge range of classes from beginners to advanced and lots of technique workshops. We also have special visiting teachers who are masters at their craft, such as Stephen West, Franklin Habit, Cecile Balladino, Cecille Franconie, Julie Arkell, and Brandon Mably. We also have KnitNight every Thursday night and book launches at the shop.
Jillian: There seems to be a real sense of community surrounding your shop and yarn crafts in general.
Susan: Absolutely. Sharing interests and learning new skills helps you feel connected with your wider community.
Jillian: Before we end for today, I just want to go back for a second. You mentioned earlier that you grew up in NYC. How did you end up in England? I thought you were from England!
Susan: *smiles* I wound up in London because I married an English guy who was living in NYC. He grew homesick, so we moved here in 1985.
Jillian: It has been such a lovely interview in your colorful and texture-y shop, but it is time for me to go now. Let’s have one more question, though! If you could be any character in fiction, who would you be?
Susan: That’s easy! Justine from The Alexandria Quartet, which was written by Lawrence Durrell. It is a group of friends retelling the same story of events set in Alexandria, Egypt, each from their different perspectives. Justine is sensuous and colourful, as well as intellectual. There’s a lot about love and relationships. The books read like a strange dream!
Jillian: This series sounds intriguing! I am going to add it to my “to read” list. Susan, thank you so much for keeping us “in the loop” on Loop, London! I know for sure that your shop (and Camden Passage in general!) is on my list of places to visit if I ever get to England!
Until then, readers, I’ll keep up with Loop, London by going to their website, reading their beautiful blog, and following them on both Facebook and Twitter. Susan has also written several books: Pretty Knits, Vintage Crochet, and Juju’s Loops.
Speaking of Loop, London’s blog, be sure to stop by today and read the reciprocal interview they did with us here at Blue Sky Alpacas! Even better, in honor of Loop, London’s favorite Blue Sky Alpacas yarn and the release of The Great Gatsby, we are hosting a simultaneous giveaway, in which one winner chosen on each blog will receive one of our new 1920s-inspired Metalico wrap patterns of their choice (Daisy, Frances, or Zelda) and enough Metalico in their color choice to complete the project. To enter, leave a comment telling us why you love Metalico and we’ll announce the winner next week! And don’t forget to head over to Loop, London’s blog to check out their interview with us and enter their contest!
Remember, if you own or visit a shop that carries Blue Sky Alpacas yarn or is hosting a special class or activity with Blue Sky Alpacas patterns or yarns, drop us a line at email@example.com! Also let us know if there are questions you’d like answered by our shop owners that we aren’t touching on, and we can look into adding them to our repertoire.
July 4, 2012
Thea Colman is a prolific designer. She has a beautiful aesthetic and the construction methods she chooses create wearable garments.
The Blue Sky Alpacas team recently met Thea in person at TNNA. It was a great time and we did a fun interview to boot.
BSA: What is your geographical story?
Thea: I’m from Princeton New Jersey, and went to school at a small liberal arts college in upstate New York. Right after college, I had the urge to be somewhere totally different and moved out to San Francisco. I lived in the Inner Mission, the Castro, and Haight Ashbury, which were hilarious and crazy and exactly opposite from the J. Crew catalog life I had known. I loved San Francisco and stayed there for ten years, but…the East Coast beckoned, and since I missed both the seasons and my family, it seems I’m staying in the Boston area for the foreseeable future.
BSA: Cake or pie? Which kind and why?
Thea: Both. Because nobody should have to choose.
BSA: What is your favorite color? What color is your toothbrush? If they are not the same, why not? If they are the same, how did that come about? Was it a conscious decision?
Thea: Purple and purple. They’re the same because I left my green one at TNNA and this was the next one in the pack!
BSA: Is there one person/company with whom you have previously worked that you would love the chance to work with again?
Thea: I worked in advertising for an agency called Goodby Silverstein and Partners in San Francisco for a number of years. It was one of those funky little companies, in a brick warehouse where everyone had a great time. My clients were a cruise line, a beer company, and Got Milk. I worked on print and TV advertising, and our team won awards. Best Job Ever.
BSA: What do you enjoy doing during your downtime?
Thea: With my girls and husband, I love getting in the car and going to a new beach or town we haven’t been to before – as long as it includes food and something outside. We can kill a whole day and sometimes go into the night. (I get to knit in the car). Or, with my friends I love to hit the rummage sales, second hand shops, or the garage sale circuit on a Saturday AM. This always involves coffee.
BSA: What drives you? What question do you find yourself trying to answer?
Thea: What’s next? This applies to life and work and dinner and everything. I have to remember to stop and enjoy the moment!
BSA: Do you have anything you would like to ask me?
Thea: What’s your story? What did you do before Blue Sky? Were you already in Minnesota? And did you make that adorable little barrette you were wearing at TNNA?
Katie: Before Blue Sky I worked at my LYS and went to school for Textile Design and Development. Both the yarn shop and move to Blue Sky Alpacas have been perfectly suited to me and my passion. I lived in Sheboygan, Wisconsin and worked in Milwaukee. The move to Minnesota has been an exciting new chapter for me and happened really quickly. Sometimes, in the car I have to remind myself, “This is Minnesota, you live here.” I didn’t make my barrette, but I did get it at Darn Knit Anyway, a shop I had to check out in my new home state.
BSA: What’s next for you?
Thea: I have no idea! I do have lots of plans, but I am not sure which one is going to happen. For the next year or so, though, it’s going to be more of the same – my girls, some designs, my knitting life with travels and some amazing friends, a separate life outside of knitting, and my family. All of which is pretty awesome, so I don’t think I want to change anything just yet.
Thank you Thea for an interesting and fun interview!
And now, for the giveaway information!
Thea has released another design in Blue Sky Alpacas Skinny Cotton.
This design, Planter’s Punch, is featured on Thea’s blog right now.
Click on over for your chance to win some Blue Sky Alpacas Skinny Cotton and the Planter’s Punch pattern for your very own.
Just keep knitting, knitting, knitting…