Thank You!- may your days be merry and bright

I love this point in the year when its legitimately time to sign-off work mode and indulge in some relaxation and reflection on the year nearly done.  

While 2020 has without doubt been a long hard slog with Covid impacts layered on top of all sorts of pressures and hurdles that happen in any year, we’re here, nigh on Christmas and the dawn of 2021. It’s a relief.

I am enormously grateful for the good things that have happened in 2020. We have been blessed to have two more grandchildren, and we’re able to see all 3 of our mokopuna regularly. We feel for our co-grandparents who are on the other side of the world and restricted to grandparenting by Skype or Zoom this year. Soon, soon……..

In August I was part of the wider Palliser Ridge whānau featured on Country Calendar doing a dye workshop. It was a super opportunity and really showed what a good operation Palliser Ridge farm is. As a result the word has spread about dye classes and they’ve become very popular.

I get such a buzz from the workshops; I always learn something new, the connection with other crafters is wonderful and especially the enthusiasm they bring. It is a fun-filled afternoon, rather like being allowed back to kindergarten to play in the paint. So thank you to all the people who have joined us at the woolshed, you really lift me up. 

I especially want to thank everyone who has bought Kindly Dyer yarns.  I do hope you are enjoying knitting, crocheting, and making with the yarns as much as I enjoyed colouring them. Selling still feels an unfamiliar activity for me and I appreciate every single purchase. Your support encourages me immensely.

And so as I reflect on 2020 and all the people who have put the GOOD into my year; family, friends near and far, workmates past and present, and customers, I’m getting into another favourite activity – planning for the year ahead.

Every year I make a plan for myself and write it down. I have done this since year 2000 using the 7thHabit “Sharpening the Saw” from Steven Covey’s 7 Habits of Highly Effective People as a framework for my personal goals. In 2021 I’m going to make a habit of reviewing and reflecting on my goals/plans more regularly and re-focusing my actions to keep on track.

Now, I’m off to do some gardening, to soak up inspiration and renew my energy tank. I’ve got my natural dyed yarns on the needles already and at least 2 more projects in the wings.

Belle shawl – designed by Truly Myrtle knit in progress with Kindly Dyer yarns Grace (100% NZ merino) and Clara (80/20 merino nylon sock)

I wish you all a joyous festive season.  May your days be merry and bright, with plenty of time to relax and enjoy nature, leisure pastimes and the good company of others. 

Hugs, kindness always – Keiry


Down the rabbit hole

Back in April this year – yep, lockdown time – Bonnie (@unionfibre) posted pics of an adorable little rabbit she was knitting called Bunny Odile designed by Cinthia Vallet (@fromcinthia).

I commented my delight and Bonnie suggested that some natural dyed yarn would be special. Well! What a great idea for lockdown dyeing. I had all the plant materials for rabbity-brown, and I had some lovely single-ply Merino from Wild Earth Yarns that was waiting for just the right project. So, down the rabbit hole I hurried.

I made a batch of dye with flax seed-pods from my garden that gave a lovely light brown and I splotched on some Logwood extract to give nice warm variegations and voilà, perfect rabbity-brown yarn.

As soon as that first skein was dry I cast on Bunny Odile and was transfixed with the process of knitting, in one piece, from the tip of her nose to her cute wee tail, a little lockdown bunny. I knit a pretty pink dress with bobbles to suit her plucky style.

One was not enough. I spent happy days making dyes with the flax seed pods, and Alder cones and walnut husks that I’d gathered at my friend Karen’s farm. I dyed up all the Merino single skeins I had left in various shade of rabbit; brown, beige and honey. I dyed yarn for clothes too, and knit another rabbit and sweater.

Thoughts gnawed at me during lockdown, that while I was happy, safe and secure at a home shared with my beloved, and having time to indulge my creative passions, outside my bubble I knew there were Mums and kids without such safety and security. And so, a little idea formed and percolated away and I’m pleased to share it here.

I’ve made up a number of Home Bunny yarn kits to sell. All the proceeds from these will go to Women’s Refuge to help them provide safe and secure homes for women and kids in need.  I’ll have these for sale at Capital Fibre Fest at Expressions Arts and Entertainment Centre Upper Hutt on Saturday 24thOctober. I’ll be there on the Palliser Ridge stand with Kindly Dyer yarns and the bunny yarn kits.

Each bunny yarn kit contains :

~ One 35g mini cake of naturally dyed single ply yarn to knit Bunny Odile

~ Three 20g mini cakes of naturally dyed fingering weight yarns in 3 colours to knit a couple of garments

~ A length of black wool to embroider eyes and nose on your Bunny

The colours for the garments are all from trials or happy surprises in the dye pots and every kit is a different colour combination.

If you don’t already have the pattern for Bunny Odile, it’s available online for purchase here on Ravelry or on PayHip.

You’ll also need 2.0mm double pointed needles or circular needle, and stuffing for the finished bunny.

You can see Cinthia’s other adorable animal designs here on Ravelry.