The word for a collection of knitters ,“A Kindness”.
I read these words, a kindness, and I think what a joyful thought. What exactly is kindness? Kindness is, understanding, tenderness, humanity, graciousness, forbearance, decency, benevolence, words… such powerful words! I began to think that maybe that was what I was missing in my life, a group of women and maybe a gentleman or two who belong to a community of kindness. The idea that knitting on our own we are just a knitter, but together we become a group, a kindness. That seems important somehow.
I had recently suffered an accident that had left me in chronic pain and unable to get around like I used to, I was a bit down, and frankly, terribly lonely. I had learned something about the introvert in me, I longed for like minded company, someone who got excited about a perfectly turned heel, or when the holes in the lace were even, and the brioche didn’t kick my rear end. I needed community.
My daughter was and is an extremely talented woman and she was crocheting daily. We were talking one day about creating for the kids, but all of the yarn was pastel pink, baby blue, mint green and so on. Where were the deep jewel tones, the variegated colorsways that spoke to us as knitters and crocheters? So began a bit of research and some down and dirty yarn dyeing… and that is how we were born! As we begin our 4th year, the growth and the changes are exponential. I am excited that she and I have grown something so beautiful where kindness is so important, a place where we celebrate everyone who enters our doors or stops at our booth. We want you to join our kindness and if you can’t join us, we hope you find another.
A few more words about the idea of knitters,crocheters and kindness. This common ground we share, the love of the tactileness of yarn, the feel of the fiber as it flows through our fingers. Most fiber artists will tell you it relaxes them, they are at peace, each stitch allows them a thought, a prayer raised in love, a hope that whoever wears the fabric we make knows of the hours of love in every stitch. It doesn’t matter if it is for someone we love dearly or someone we will never know, love is stitched with every cross of the needles and every dive of the hook. We knit and crochet for ourselves, our loved ones, and our neighbors. We knit and crochet for hospital birthing wings and neonatal intensive care units. We knit and crochet blankets for stillborn babies so mothers can wrap their precious child in something beautiful. We knit and crochet for cancer patients, the homeless, and women’s shelters. The list is long and still kindness and love cover every stitch. I am honored to dye yarn for all of these reasons. It is my blessing every single day and I couldn’t do it without all of you, my group, my community, my kindness.
I guess I thought that, at almost 56 years of age, it was a good time to begin a new adventure. You know that thought of, “if I go into business for myself I can make my own hours, work whenever I want?” Well… I have worked longer and harder these last three years than I have ever worked in my life, my brain is always working. What new colors can I dye? Is it time to put the advents up for presale? Social media… we need more social media. Did I mention I am now 59 and social media and I have a real LOVE/HATE relationship? Anyway, you get the picture. Nothing excites me more than a box of bare yarn. Oh the possibilities! My husband however, isn’t so excited. He knows the entire house will soon smell of wet sheep. Sorry dear, but sheep smells when you cook it! I really do try to have all of the dyeing done by the time he gets home from work. I am hoping that soon at least one of my 11 incredible grandchildren will show an interest in yarn dyeing and come work with me.
We live right on the Pacific Ocean, as the crow flies the beach is maybe a couple of miles from my back yard and even with the dunes between us, on stormy nights the surf roars. We have old growth forests within a few minutes drive and even deserts if we want to put in the time. The Pacific Northwest is one of the most beautiful places in the world. I draw my inspiration daily from the beauty right outside my back door. I feel so blessed. Currently most of our family is close. We have one adventure seeking daughter living in Alaska, one granddaughter serving in the Air Force in Kuwait, (Thank you Jasmine for all you do and for all you sacrifice), her husband is also deployed in Iraq (Be Safe Jake, and thank you too) and we have 3 grandkids living in North Carolina. Not gonna lie, I wish they were closer, but I love NC, so going to visit is fun. I used to have fabulous pets, but the last of my fur babies died last year and I haven’t had the heart to get a new one yet. Maybe someday.
As I mentioned above my daughter Jessica, Jazzie to us, is my business partner. She dyes all of the fiber in the shop and I can’t thank her enough. I love dyeing yarn, HATE dyeing fiber. That stuff falls apart. She sees color in such incredible ways. I may think too much sometimes, where Jazzie will grab six different dyes without looking, use only those for her dye, and they always look amazing. The other thing Jazz does for us besides dyeing fiber and building websites (from the bottom of my heart thank you because did I mention I am 59?) is she pours all of our candles. May I just say some of the scents she pours are just so thoughtful. I mean if you put Toasted Marshmallow next to Campfire… well you get the picture! She made a candle named Samdora, my mothers name, because it reminded her of the soap she used, another called 1963 Alder Street because it reminded her of raking leaves with my dad. We have Barstool Glances, Hipster Lumberjack, and Not Your Typical Grandma… It’s fun and the candles are 100% soy wax, with lead and zinc free wicks so they burn very clean. Yes, my girl is very talented. She lives on a few acres a bit out of town with her husband Brian, and two of my grand babies, Lily and Hazel, her oldest lives in the big city and has my very first great grand baby. Wow, how time flies. Oh, I almost forgot! I have a new granddog, Wally. He is a Newfoundland, 41 pounds at 14 weeks. Go Wally!
To be in business with one’s daughter, or one’s mother for that matter, can get a little frustrating because you never want to hurt the other. But mostly we are excited that we get to work together and for the most part we have it figured out. We know what role the other plays and we try to be respectful of that role. Mostly though, it’s knowing that she has my back and I have hers in a way that only a mother and daughter can work it out. My cup does run over and I am so excited to share what we do on yet another platform.
This little blog will be mostly about knitting and crocheting, the fiber arts and a group of kindness. I may throw in some life on the farm, some favorite recipes, and hopefully a guest blogger or two will show up. Life has been a little different this last year. To have the ability to walk in the kitchen, dye some yarn, light a candle my daughter made, cover up and get cozy in the last shawl I knit, meet up with my fellow knitters, and live in their kindness has been a huge comfort for me and Jazzie this last year. And to you who have supported us, whether in the shop or online, we cannot thank you enough. Your support has kept us going, not just in business but you have also filled our hearts with love, kindness, and community. Are there words to express that kind of gratitude? I am not really sure, but I hope you can feel my love. We hope you will come back and join us the next time, and more than that, we hope you have found a group of kindness here and that you will join us and make our community a little closer knit .