The gift of an Indie-dyer…
I hope you’ve had a great week so far. Just 2 more week-days / work-days to go.
My girls and I just can!not!wait! for this weekend and the Alliepad Alpakkas Farm Visit and Fibre Festival (details on the Events page). I’m so looking forward to a wonderful day out in the Magaliesberg, to the classes, workshops and demonstrations, and to drooling over the hand crafted alpaca-fibre goods and everything on offer from Baah Yarns & Fibre Arts, Linda’s Treehouse, Umbala Handpainted Yarns, Karoo Moon, The Yarn Tree, Craft Academy, Glynis Brooke, L.J. Craft Creations and Stitch Please.
It’ll be the first time I’ll be visiting the alpaca farm, and it’s long overdue. I met the lovely Louisa at a weaving course at the beginning of the year and have been wanting to visit her for ages. But time is a fickle beast – it passes way faster than it theoretically should and somehow there just isn’t enough of it when you need it. I first just need to get through this week with my heart still in my chest…
I was devastated to hear, last week, of the passing of Antoinette Pitsillides, Kaleidoscope Hand Dyed Yarns. Such an amazing indie-dyer! Her Gotta Love It Superwash in the Galactica colour way was the inspiration for my Blues Fade Boxy that I made earlier this year (the yarn right at the top). I’d unfortunately never met or spoken with her so I’ve been trying to figure out why her passing has affected me so deeply.
An unimaginable loss…
Part of it is just the timing. Friday will be one year since my mother-in-law (mother-in-love) passed away very unexpectedly after surgery. She fondly called me her daughter-in-love (not daughter-in-law) and I miss her constantly. There are some days that I still can’t quite fathom that she’s not here anymore. I often catch myself speaking aloud to her and asking for advice or guidance. Knowing that would please her no end – she loved to help. She was such an amazing Ouma in every way. My girls have had a tough year accepting her loss and the rest of our family have, too.
The feelings we felt this week, a year ago, are raw and exposed again. It feels almost like yesterday. So I can empathise intimately with what Antoinette’s husband and young children, family and friends must be feeling and going through. My heart breaks for them. My family and I (and I’m sure the whole yarn community) send them love and sympathy and wish them strength in their time of grief.
This Friday the 24th will be a memorial make-a-square-day for Antoinette (details on the Events page). I know how slowly I knit (and apparently weave as well… On Monday, Glynis phrased it as “relaxed” rather than “slow” 😄). So I pre-emptively started the 20 x 20 cm square at home with the aim of finishing it there. I cast on with what I had left of the gorgeous Galactica sock weight yarn and I’m adding some ColourSpun and Hartlam odds and ends.
The gift of an Indie-dyer…
Working with that yarn again got me thinking… How many lives Antoinette must have touched and how many yarn crafters she must have inspired with her beautiful yarns. How many skeins are out there that she poured her self-expression, love, creativity and time into. Every hank of yarn she touched has gone on to touch the life of another. What an amazing gift! It has given me even more appreciation for our yarn designers and indie-dyers, for their sacrifices and hard work, for sharing a bit of themselves with all of us. The same is true of every person in the yarn-creating, -teaching and -selling community. I am humbled and grateful to you all!
So, off I’ll go to the alpaca farm this weekend to pay tribute to all the wonderful people involved in creating and selling yarn and fibre, to the indie-dyers who will be there (and those who won’t) and in memory of those who are no longer able to share their gift with us. And that’s why I’ll continue with this blog… To support all these amazing people who make it possible for us to craft with yarn, to share my admiration of their artistry and dedication and how they inspire creativity in all of us.
Please do come to the Alliepad Alpakkas Farm Visit and Fibre Festival this weekend to have an awesome day out in the Magaliesberg and to celebrate the yarn community that we’re so blessed to have.
See you there!!