Earlier this week, I posted about my newly finished Bradway Shawl that I knit in Cedar House Yarns worsted weight. I know it's a brand that some of you might not be familiar with, so I wanted to share a little more about Jenn and her beautiful yarns!
I stumbled upon Cedar House Yarns while doing some research on locally dyed yarns here in the Pacific Northwest. Jenn is located in Bellingham, Washington, which is up near the border between Washington and Canada. It's a pretty beautiful part of the state and I loved getting to drive up to meet her in person when my order was ready! I'm always down for a road trip...especially if there's yarn at the end of it!
A lot of what Jenn has to say in our mini-interview really resonated with me - especially about the "I can make that" mentality...as I'm sure it will with many of you too!
1. Tell us a little bit about yourself!
I'm a wife, mother, dyer, avid beer drinker and beard lover. I started my business 2 years ago, with mostly solid colors, to create something that I loved and that would be easy for others to use for making garments. At that time there weren't a lot of hand dyed solids. We are now branching out into other variegated shades and speckles, to compliment our original palette.
2. How did you get started dying yarn?
Something I heard very often from my mom growing up was "I could make that" I had the same thought in my mind after attending Knit City in Vancouver, BC several years ago. I went with my friends and I was looking at the colors and skeins in a very technical way and thought to myself "I could make that".
3. How has living in the Pacific Northwest influenced your work?
Living in the PNW has influenced every bit of my work. My colors come from random things around us. Sometimes it will be a bird in our front yard or a flower we saw on a walk. We feel very lucky to live in such a beautiful place and our colors are meant to show our gratitude to our surroundings.
4. If I remember correctly, you recently turned dying into your full time gig. What have been the biggest surprises you’ve had about being self-employed?
The biggest surprise has been finding balance between life and work. This is something that I had thought would get easier after leaving a full time office job but it hasn't gotten any easier. I try to set boundaries for myself so I can dedicate the time I need to caring for my family and still have the time I need to do my work.
5. What’s on your studio/knitting playlist? Any favorite artists or podcasts that we should be listening to?
I listen to a lot of audiobooks while I'm working. Right now I'm listening to Norse Mythology by Neil Gaiman (he narrates it too) As for music, I listen to a wide range of things. Often it will start with something a little metal like The Sword, then onto show tunes like the soundtrack to Hamilton or Fiddler on the Roof and then maybe Sigur Ros to finish.
6. What’s next on your “to-make” list?
I've been on a knitted top kick lately. I just finished The Farm House Cardigan by Amy Christoffers with our Old Growth Worsted yarn in Twilight. Right now I'm knitting Talavera from Pom Pom Magazine (Summer 2015) with our Sapling Sock yarn. After that I plan to make a Salal Cardigan by Andi Satterlund with our Old Growth Worsted in Lilac.