August 30, 2012

Taking a bit of a Blog Break

I didn't even realize how long it's been since I wrote a blog post.  Quite some time I see.  I'm going to working on a blog revamp and wanted to let you know that some really fun things are going to be coming to the blog.  I'm not sure when it will happen but I would like to have something for you by the end of October.  Our website and online shop will get a revamp too.  In the mean time if you are on Facebook check out our page for any updates.

Finally because I like to have a photo in every blog post.  Here is a recent yarn I spun.  It is called Day of the Dead and it even has skull beads!

June 15, 2012

Alpaca Farm

On Monday I took a trip to a local alpaca farm KeLe Alpacas to pick up a fleece.  Jessie and I picked the fleece out on the alpaca Cooper when we attended a small fiber show in Door County Wisconsin.    Keith and LeAnna who own the farm just happened to be shearing more alpacas and let me take a few photos of the shearing and the recently sheared alpacas.

Alpacas waiting to get sheared.

On the shearing table an alpaca gets sheared.

The recently sheared alpacas.

Some of Cooper's fleece.

Crimpy locks from Cooper's fleece.

June 7, 2012

Happy Birthday Celebration!

So if you asked me 10 years ago where I would be today I would have told you I was going to be a zooologist, no kids, maybe a husband, a pug and own small sporty car.  That isn't my life at (almost) 29 and I'm happy with that.  I own my own fiber arts business, I'm happily married with two little boys, I stay at home with them and the cat, and I own a van, gasp yes a van.

Spinning with my sons.

Why am I letting you know this?  Because it is OK to be in a different place in life then you though you would be.  It may just turn out better then you could have ever imagined.  Sometimes it may get hard but if you have balance doing the things you love and sharing it with the people you love it is all worth it.

And I want to celebrate my birthday with you.  June 12Th I'll turn 29 and we are going to get the celebration started early!

First off we are having a sale, plus you will find any extra special goodies with each order!  Just use coupon code: HELLOBDAY15 for 15% off your order in our Etsy shop! (Sorry but only one coupon per order per person, not to be combined with any other coupons, discounts or promotions.  Valid from Friday June 8th 2012 until Sunday June 17th ).

Plus, if we get 29 sales in our Etsy shop (29 items purchased) we will have a giveaway on Monday June 18th 2012.  I'll post details if there will be a giveaway on Monday the 18th.  I'll be stocking the shop all week so check for new fun fibers to spin and yarn to knit.

June 4, 2012

Some Fabulous Fiber

Just wanted to show you what we have been up to.  I hope you enjoy all the things we create because we enjoy creating them.

Carding batts....
Drop kicked Unicorn fiber art batt.

Custom orders.....
Mini Batt trio custom order.

Spinning yarn...
Lock-spun textured art yarn.

Dyeing fiber...
Faux cashmere combed top.

Silk Mawatas (Hankies).

Making buttons...

Many more things to come.  I just ordered a bump of Falkland that is 22 pounds of fiber, some yummy blue faced Leicester and silk top, more silk hankies, and some sparkle in the form of firestar and Angelina.  Jessie has been on the search for river rocks and is going through her stash of Hawaiian beach glass to turn into buttons.  I hope you are excited as I am.

*** One more thing I'm excited about is my birthday!  Check back on Friday June 8th for a special coupon code to use in our Etsy shop. ***

May 18, 2012

Shepard's Harvest Sheep and Wool Festival

We had our very first official fiber fest over the weekend.  We were vendors at the Shepard's Harvest in Elmo, Minnesota.  It was a huge success for us as newbie vendors and indie fiber artist.  Many people were surprised that this was our first time vending at a fiber festival.  I hope that was a good thing.  Check out our booth!

Our booth at the Shepard's Harvest Fiber Festival.

Batts, batts and more fiber art batts!

Hand-spun Yarn.

Hand-dyed fiber and silk scarves.

 We almost sold out of mini fiber batts (1 ounce art batts).  Jessie and I made 26 and came back with 3.  The Angelina flew out the door.  It was most popular with the little old ladies, yes you read that correctly little old ladies.  Silk hankies (mawatas) were very popular as well.  I carded 125 fiber art batts and came back with 60.  Even a few going to be spinners took some home.  StevenBe took 10 of our batts to sell in his shop(s) and Artisan Knit Works bought a dozen of our hand-spun yarns to sell in her shop.  You can now find our fiber in Minnesota and Michigan (as well as Wisconsin of course).

Me by all the fiber art batts I carded.

Jessie by her buttons and some of the hand-spun yarn.

I appreciate everyone that came by our booth and bought some of our fabulous fiber.  It is what keeps us going and get to do something we love.  It also helps us support those small farms.  We got some beautiful fleeces (sheep and alpaca) from local small farms.  I'll show you what I will be carding into some new batts soon.  We had lots of fun and would love to do it again next year!

April 20, 2012

Textured Art Yarn Market Bag

Art Yarn Market Bag.

So I just wanted to share with you a project I knit using a textured art yarn that I spun up.  I had wanted to spin something for me so I dove into my personal stash.  I picked an art batt from Spinup Yarns and some locks from Lanitium Ex Machina and spun a lockspun textured art yarn single.  I thought I would make a cowl from a video I recently watched by a fellow fiber artist (Neauveau) that showed how to make a cowl using an elongated stitch.  I started to make the cowl and well, it got really long and stretchy.  So, I thought it would be fun to turn it into a market bag before it got too long.  I knit a bottom on it by decreasing like a hat and knitting regular (no more elongated stitches).  I then picked up stitches on the top and knit a seed stitch handle.

Body of the bag that shows the elongated stitch.

Handle of the bag.

I think I'm going to make another version of an textured art yarn market bag to share with you before farmer's market season begins.  If you want to try and make one like this one here is what I did:

Needles: Size 10
Yarn: 78 yards of bulky textured art yarn
CO 30 stitches
Knit in round on circular needles
Rows 1-18 Knit using and elongated stitch
Row 19 Knit (do not use an elongated stitch)
Row 20 *Knit 5 PM K2tog* repeat until end of row
Row 21 Knit
Row 22 K2tog after every SM
Row Knit
Keep decreasing by K2tog after SM then knit a row then decrease until you have a few stitches left.  Switch to double point needles when it is hard to knit on the circular ones.
Pull the yarn through the remaining stitches to bind off.  Cut yarn then weave it inside and secure it.
Handle: Pick up 7 stitches from the edge
Seed stitch handle (Knit, Purl until end of row) until desired length or until you run out of yarn (like I did) but save enough to BO
BO using the 3 needle bind-off method with 7 stitches on the opposite side of the top of the bag.

There you have it!  So I tried to make this more of an official pattern but I knit without writing anything down so sorry if it is hard to understand.  So are you going to try and knit a market bag with some textured art yarn?  I sure hope so.  (If you are looking for some yarn or a batt to spin to make some check out our shop.) Please share pictures if you do knit a market bag using textured art yarn.

April 13, 2012

And the Winners are...

Comment # 13: Danielle who said:
"Thank you for the giveaway! I would love some yarn! My favorite in your shop is the Harvest yarn. It's not normally what I go for (normally I like bright, fun stuff), but something about those beautiful greens draws me in."

We reached over 400 fans on Facebook so we have a second winner and that is....
Comment # 2: Monica McDonald who said:
"I love fiber! I've had the bunny hop batt in my cart for a little while - ADORE. I also love the valentine batt."

Congratulations ladies!  Please contact me at so I know where to ship your goodies.

April 11, 2012

Giveaway Time!

Bunny Hop Fiber Art Batt by Hello Purl

Remember we are celebrating our anniversary and 100 sales on Etsy?  Good, because this means it is giveaway time!  OK lets make this sweet and simple.  We are giving away a surprise fiber package with either yarn or spinning fiber plus other goodies.  All you have to do is comment below with what you would prefer to win yarn or spinning fiber and your favorite thing from our shop (this will help me pick something out that you will love).

Bonus: If we get 400 Facebook fans by Friday morning I will draw a second name so head on over to our page and like it if you haven't already we are only a few fans away!

Extra Bonus:  *We are also giving away a fiber prize pack to an Etsy customer so if you bought something from our online shop you just may be getting a surprise of fiber in the mail.  I will draw a winner tomorrow morning and contact them through Etsy.  If you want to get in on this check out the previous blog post for details there is still time!*

Please let me know if you are having any trouble entering comments and I will enter for you just email me at or if you have any questions.

I will draw the winner(s) on Friday April 13th 2012 at 9:00am (CST) and post the winner(s) later that day.  The winner will need to contact me within 24 hours at to claim their prize.  Again thank you!

Jasmine Hand-spun Textured Art Yarn by Hello Purl

*Photographs just show what we make you will not be receiving those exact items in your prize pack you may or may not receive something similar.  You will receive a prize pack full of surprises and wonderful fiber because we treat our winners well.*

April 6, 2012

Anniversary Celebration!

So we are coming up on our 1 year anniversary as a business!  Yay us!  I officially opened the Hello Purl Etsy shop on April 11th 2011 (Jessie joined me in July).  So we are going to going to be celebrating the whole month of April.  Keep and eye out here and on our Facebook page as well.

Faux Cashmere Combed Top in "Bacteria Bloom".

Right now we are having a sale and coupon code: HELLO1Year20 gets you 20% off your total purchase in our shop through April 11th! (Sorry only one coupon code can be used but you can use the coupon code on multiple orders through April 11th 2011).

Fiber Art Batt in "Science Experiment".

Giveaways are coming as well!  Don't you just love giveaways?  I do so check back on this blog on Wednesday April 11th for details on how to win some yummy Hello Purl fiber.  We are going to give away a yarn or batt in honor of our 1 year shop opening anniversary and one to a past customer because we also reached over 100 sale in less then a year and it was a goal of mine to do so.  You can still enter by making a purchase in our Etsy shop (don't forget that coupon code).

Hand-spun Textured Art Yarn in "Purple Lotus".

One more thing if we reach 400 fans on Facebook (only nine more fans needed as I type this post) we will giveaway a 3rd fiber item.  So don't forget to tell your friends about us!

Handmade Yellow Birch Wood Button.

Can you tell we are excited?  I sure hope so because we are.  Let the celebration continue...

March 26, 2012

Outdoor Bunny Pen

It has been really warm outside, almost summer like here in Wisconsin so my husband decided it would be nice to build the rabbits an outdoor pen for them to exercise and get some fresh air.  The rabbits are currently in a nice size hutch in the garage to keep them warm for winter and we will soon move the hutch outside.  It may snow again because that is how the weather in Wisconsin is and we did just shear them earlier in the month.  So for now they are inside but when the weather is nice I will bring them outside to play in their playpen.

So here are the rabbits enjoying the playpen outside...

Niblet and Pearl's new outdoor playpen.

Niblet nibbling some grass.

Pearl enjoying the outdoors.

Niblet and Pearl getting some fresh air and exercise.

March 16, 2012

Shearing My Rabbits

I have two German Angora rabbits that needed to be sheared a few weeks ago.  So Jessie came over and helped shear them.  The first two times we sheared them we used a scissors which took quite a long time.  This time we used dog clippers with a special blade for fine hair.  Jessie did the actual shearing since she trims her dog's hair and I assisted in the holding.  The rabbits did very well with the whole process and now that it is getting warmer I'm sure they enjoy less fur.  It is necessary for the rabbit's health to get sheared so they won't over heat or have mats which are uncomfortable for them.  Then I get to have wonderful fiber to spin.

Pearl before shearing.

Pearl after shearing.

Niblet before shearing.

Niblet after shearing.
Pearl's fur (bottom) and Niblet's fur (top).

March 2, 2012

Felted Bowls

Jessie and I taught a wet felted bowl class at the D.I.Y. Studio and Gifts (in Green Bay Wisconsin) on Tuesday.  It was lots of fun and our wonderful class made some beautiful felted bowls.  I forgot my camera so I don't have any pictures of the process but I did take a few pictures of the bowl that Jessie and I made.  So at least I hope you enjoy them.  The class was so wonderful we will be offering it again in the future so look for that and I will hopefully bring my camera.

Three felted bowls.

Jessie's felted bowl.

My felted bowl.

Another bowl I felted prior to the class.

February 24, 2012

Wool Over Wire

So I decided to give core-spinning wool over wire a try.  I saw this technique when I first started spinning so I didn't think I was even close to attempting it a year and a half ago but last week I gave it a try.  I learned how to core-spin where you wrap your fibers over a another piece of yarn or crochet thread.  So instead of wrapping your fibers over yarn I wrapped them over wire.  I used some 26 gauge wire I had from my previous jewelry making crafts, carded a batt from wool, bamboo, soy silk, recycled sari silk and of course some Angelina for sparkle.  This is what I got:

Wire-spun yarn!

Fiber core-spun over wire.

I then decided it would be fun to make some jewelry with the wire yarn.  So I knit a rectangle for the necklace on size 15 needles and stretched it out a bit.  For the bracelet I knit another longer rectangle and bent the wire so it would curve.  I use one of Jessie's handmade buttons for the clasp part.  This is what I got:

Wire-spun yarn and knit necklace and cuff.

Wire-spun yarn knit into a necklace.

Cuff knit from wire-spun yarn with a handmade button.

Back view of cuff / bracelet

What do you think?

February 17, 2012

A Fantistic Fiber Friday

I'm giving you some fiber eye candy today and want to let you know about a few things.  I did an interview with Spin Artiste blog and you can find out more about me if you head over and check it out.  There will be some yummy fiber given away soon so check back with the Spin Artiste blog for all the details.

We are still having a our Birthday Sale in honor of Jessie's birthday (that was on the 16th) check out our Etsy shop!  Use coupon code: BDAYSHIPFREE for free shipping to the US or use coupon code: HAPPYBDAY15 for 15% off your order.  Choose the best savings for you. Only one coupon per customer per transaction. Valid until February 19th, 2012.