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The sidewalk sale is always a ton of fun! Today is the last day of this years sale. It’s been fun and our awesome customers have come from in town to out of state to build a mountain of a “stash”.
We still have a couple bags…

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Kits…

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And fabulous yarns to move on out before fall calls on the yummy winter yarns.

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Yep there is Alchemy, Rowan, Tahki, and lots of the best in there.
Hope to see you all today!

Happy “Stashing”!
xx
Ash

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All You Knit Is Love is flying out of the shop! Cheryl made the lovely baby pants in the picture and is on her second pair (this time circular!) she knit them beautifully and said the pattern was easy to follow. She’s trying out knitting them on 8″ circulars to avoid seaming. I love them! The book is an Isager book and written to use Isager yarns. Cheryl used Isager “Alpaca 1” and Ecobutterfly Organics “Pakucho Lace”. *held together*
Last week I sold more copies of the book and saw a sweater a customer had knit from it. The simple and classic designs make it a no brainer. And the yarn is perfect for the parents who want their baby in warm, cozy, knits.
We have lots of baby yarn! Mom- Shelli- is trying to get it out and looking awesome. But she’s selling it before she can even stock it.
Oh My and Heaven, by Plymouth, just arrive! And Oh My is right!! The softest SINthetic πŸ˜‰ It’s ok – its machine washable and even you will want to snuggle up. I swear! (Well, shop girl, Heidi won’t ha!) But I adore itπŸ˜ƒ

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(Couple more yarn/knit shots)
Happy Knitting!
xx
Ash

So our little Miss picked out our Sweetie Pie hat to wear with her fabulous outfit today. It’s such a fun hat. She chose to wear it herself- too stinking cute!

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Oh my! How cute is this?!
It’s a sweet pattern that also comes with instructions for booties.
We love Be Sweet Yarn and patterns. The yarn Bambino Taffy for this project is soft and color changes with bright summer colors, patriotic red/ white/ blue, and a watermelon ish one as well.
Perfect cotton hat for all year round.
The pattern changes and color changes in the yarn keep it interesting.
Happy knitting!
xx
Ash

Mary Mary Pettis-Sarley how does your garden grow? With alpaca, sheep, and little goats. And coriepsis all in a row…

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So last weekend we had a dye workshop up at Twirl in Napa, CA. The weather was perfect… Sunny, hot with a nice breeze and lots of cool shade from the grape vines.
We learned about natural dyes, mortars, and that duplicating a naturally dyed yarn is near impossible πŸ˜‰

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Mary loves her animals and treats them with such kindness. She glows when she talks about her bummer lambs or Celeste or Cupcake, Peanut Butter, or Carolina the cow.
She has respect for her animals and likes to honor them by naming colors or yarns after them.
Twirl is a magical place with creatures of all shapes, sizes, and talent. The day was fun and relaxed and we all left with four beautifully dyed yarns!
1. 100% wool tan
2. 100% wool white
3. Alpaca blend brown
4. Alpaca blend darkish grey
The fibers all took the dyes differently. I put the two lighter yarns in the “pink” pot and the colors are pretty different shades. Same dye but different fibers.

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Dying is completely new to me. Aside from mixing some Rit in my washer and tossing in wet clothes?! I have no experience. Mary is very whimsical about her dying and doesn’t waste time with worry. She loves all the colors she gets and tends to avoid trying to force a color onto a fiber. Which makes for a happy dye ladyπŸ˜‰
While we were at the ranch Mary sent us off in all directions foraging for dye materials. Including Chris driving a “Mule” (which is like a 4WD golf cart) to another part of the property. She wasn’t hovering or pointing to a specific branch or flower. She was laid back, willing to let us explore and pick at her garden. It was a generous welcome!

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This little squirt was searching for left over pastries

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This one found a yummy bush!

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Mom tried to pick up a grouchy gopher snake – he wasn’t having it.
And after the tour and getting to pet a LESS than one day old baby alpaca, we hiked back, collected our yarns in baggies, and said our good byes. It was such a good time. The atmosphere was relaxed, the company was wonderful and Mary and Chris are so welcoming it was easy to feel at home.
And Mary made these parting gifts for all her students!

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I am doing more dye research and even looking into a “dye garden” I will share what I find and can’t wait to share my interview with Mary here on the blog! Yee! For those of you who haven’t met Mary or seen her with her animals – you will get to know her a little. I love our local yarn farm!
Happy creating!
xx
Ash

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Saturday we had a dye workshop at Twirl in Napa, CA. The most amazing views!

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Some coffee and pastries

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We all talked and some brought knitting (smarty pants! I wished I had some) and Mary gave us the skinny on her experience and how she came to live on the amazing (seriously! Amazing!) 2,000 acre ranch in Napa. Surrounded by all the wonderful animals she loves and names.

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She shared her love of fiber and could barley hold back from just tossing the soft fiber on us (wishful thinking??) it was so soft and really white.

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Then we “foraged” for dye.. And by we I mean I gabbed away and watched all the happy dyers cut, pick, and pluck, for the dye baths.

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(Heading out in the mule to hunt)

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A soon to be dye!!

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We had four fiber choices to choose from. We could choose two from each table… I chose one of each fiber.

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We all picked a little something to put our yarn in..

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Then we plopped our yarn in the “vats” which all varied in sizes and materials. Bowls, pots set on camping stoves, and a huge iron pot on a fire (hot people).
While we waited for our yarn to have a relaxing tub of color we had a nice tour of a small part of Mary’s home.

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So much to see and do and to be done out here. It’s truly a hard working duo that keep this ranch running. The animals are loved and cared for and the garden is beautiful. It’s a peaceful place to be and a great way to disconnect from the phone and enjoy your surroundings.
I will share more but I’m leaving this as a “to be continued”. I took photos of my yarn and will be collecting photos of other dye day ladies too. Can’t wait to share!
Happy knitting!
xx
Ash

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New Madeline Tosh !! Lily is loving on a bundle of luscious Tosh Merino Light… This yarn is a shop favorite πŸ’œ Mmmm!
Happy Friday!

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You know when you can feel that something will be a life changer before it happens? This trip to OR this last weekend, was one of those. I’m really not into to flying- I would rather drive across the country to clam dig in Maine than get on a plane. And this one was tiny…. Chest tightening, ohhh no! It’s not a coffin, Ash it’s a plane. Mom did a good job of distraction by talking as the plan took off. The flight was so quick! Before I knew it we were on a train and heading to our friend, Sheri, who was picking us up in Portland. (mental note… Visit Portland!)
I was so excited when we hit the road and headed to Imperial River Co. the lodge where we were staying. Holy cow!! Right on the Deschutes River! A seriously amazing place. We grabbed our room key, dropped our bags in the room and almost ran to the river edge- where it was rushing into some rapids a little ways down. So amazing to think people of the ‘Oregon Trail’ crossed all of this (rapid rivers) on foot, horse, or wagon – pre bridges. Those were a strong bunch people.
Anyway Saturday was our day at Imperial Stock Ranch. The drive was gorgeous. The scenery was nothing like I’ve seen before. Vast expanses of flat land covered in sage brush and other short bushes and flowers that require minimal water. Sage green bushes, yellow, white and purple flowers, fields of crops that seem to shimmer in the wind, and dramatic skies (up until the morning we left)

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The town was called Maupin, OR (Jeanne pronounced it mop-in) what a cute sounding name -for a cute mini town.
Once we got there we were greeted by a couple pooches. The ranch was so much prettier than any picture I had seen of it – but at first look could have been just another ranch. Definitely not the case. I wish I had a video of our visit that you all could watch. This has been a working ranch for over 140 years and non of the history has been lost. Though the ranch has changed families the care and the process have not changed. It’s really amazing and very admirable. To stick – in a modern time of technology- to a 140 year old process.
There were several structures that were built in the 1800’s and still serve their original purpose. No imported materials, no power tools, 100% USA made with 100% man power. We are talking before cars, engines… Just hard work. I was blown away.

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The original barn

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This is the original corral for breaking horses… 1800’s!

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This was so cool. It was a giant grain bin inside the big barn. They still use this. Barley treats for the horses.

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Salted hides.

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This was in the sheep shearing barn. The wool was so clean and smelled yummy! What knitter wouldn’t love the smell of fresh wool?!
They are so resourceful and ‘waste not want not’ seemed to be the unspoken Moto of the ranch. The bags used for stuffing and sending out the wool were reused many times and not because of expense. Purely because the ones they had worked just fine.

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Jeanne climbed into a “chute” with one of the giant bags attached to the bottom. She gave us a demo… Someone tosses in the wool while the person in the bag stomps it down. Reminded me of stomping grapes for wine. She stomps the wool until she’s literally able to walk out of the bag. Everything about being a rancher is physical.

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We seriously loved all the bummer lambs! Holy moly! The cutest, cleanest, lambs we had ever seen. Thanks to the vegetation and lack of mud these babies stay clean.

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Inside the “Hinton” house was super cool too. From its winding stair case wrap around porch (with swing!), fun wall paper…. And did you notice?? It’s the Imperial Stock Ranch official yarn shop… It’s where the magic (the yarn magic) happens.

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Jeanne was a wealth of knowledge with a passion for the ranches history. She is a real pioneer woman with a twist of modern business woman. She is a woman to strive to be like. Hard working, funny, and full of life. I can’t wait to go back!
I wish I could translate the energy and the magic that we experienced on the ranch. It was hard to leave, to say goodbye and head back into a faster pace of modern life. The experience was enlightening and I am craving more! I wish I could be a fly on her boots and follow her around all day to see what it’s really like.
There is this natural urge to want to know all the crafts and skills of being self sustaining after visiting a place like Imperial. They literally would survive without a town, or help from anyone else for a real long time. Jeanne her Husband, Dan, all the ranch hands, family members, and yarn girls work hard to keep the traditions of the ranch and the local economy going. No importing to get them along. Purely USA, and not without struggle. Especially in this time where it can be hard and expensive to find products local or from the USA and fast and easy to order online and overseas.

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I have lots of info and an interview to share with you all… But I wanted to share these photos and give you a taste of the experience. It just doesn’t translate with words.
I want to rope the land like Paul Bunyan and close the divide between us and Imperial Stock Ranch. I feel like I’ve made a life long friend and I plan to visit again! I keep trying to think of a way that is practical to get me back there ASAP. KNITTING!!! he he
Can not wait to go back!
Happy knitting
xx
Ash

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We all have those projects. You know the one. The one you carry everywhere, botch the pattern daily and rip it multiple times -Ugh!
I have been knitting this sweater for a few weeks now. Putting it aside because I need to focus and its almost impossible with my mini’s around.
I didn’t pick up my wrap and turns, I lost track of my rows, I missed the *note* that in bold said “at the same time shape neck edge”, then I picked up my wraps and it looked terrible… I’m convinced this is the last time I will cast on and knit the short rows!

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The yarn is SOO nice I’m loving all the knitting I’m getting out of this first skein. The yarn is not being destroyed being ripped and knitted so many times – such a good sign of a quality yarn. My Mom laughed when I told her that I’m really getting my money’s worth because I’m reuniting it so much … But it’s true. It’s like bonus knitting.
This go around I wrote all my knitted rows and paid attention to where I needed to start the neck shaping. And I did not pick up the wraps this time (because it looked like a Tetris price for some reason even I did pick them up… It looks better if I skip that part.) I’m really happy with the way it has turned out so far. Smooth with a perfect rounded edge.
It’s also a quick knit, I’m using # 11 for the body and sleeves and then # 15 for the edging. So if I can ever get the hang of it I will be smoking this pattern in a week or so. Wish me good knitting “ju-ju” ha ha
Happy re knitting knitting
xx
Ash

*pattern: Color Flow Cardigan
Size: Small
Yarn: Anna 70% wool/ 30% cotton
*imperial stock ranch yarn*
Needle: Dreamz 32″ #11/15
(I love my interchangeable kit!!)

Ok party people!! This retreat will be epic! For real! We met Jeanne (the “ranch wife” as she calls herself) and she is awesome. I had a million questions after leaving and her love for the ranches history is absolutely contagious.
Enjoy this photos and I will share more tomorrow (after smooching up my fam, sleeping and COFFEEE) he he

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Happy knitting
xx
Ash

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She’s done it again! The shop looks amazing and there is a whole new batch of fun cowl kits. New kits filled with awesome yarn that has not been kitted up before. Come check it out and see how Shelli has switched things up.

Happy Friday!
xx
Ash

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