School of Yarn - Master Class


School of Yarn Master Class ~ Community Supported and Created Yarn

Years ago, Karen and I stared our School of Yarn series as a way to give you the (knitter, crocheter, spinner or weaver) a better understanding of the yarns you were using. We wanted to open up your knowledge about fiber content, yarn construction and weight, as well as how and when to utilize which weight of yarn, with the right number of plies, made of the perfect blend of fibers. We covered quite lot of territory and I am hoping we contributed to you being more successful in your yarn choices and pairings with patterns.

... And then in waltzes the pandemic, bringing to a head issues that the textile industry has already needed to deal for quite a while. We are experiencing supply chain challenges, shipping issues and large price increases, some of which will hopefully get better and some that will just stay new and different. We need to look at these issues, not only in order to become better stewards of our planet in general, but also to start building a more sustainable approach to what we wear and make.

Blue Moon wants to be part of a solution, and with your help I believe we can add to the positive momentum forward. Our community is you – as well as the ranchers here in the western US who lovingly raise the sheep that grow the wool we are going to use – and also the processing people who clean the wool – and also everyone at the mill who contributes to milling and designing the yarn – and then of course me, your dyer and Karen, representing the designers.

All of the yarn we create and choose to bring into the Blue Moon line-up under the Community Supported Yarn initiative will be US made with The Textile Institute's Responsible Wool Standards stamp of approval (certification). Yarn making takes time to get it from the sheep to your hands. So we are going to start now and go for a little over a year ~ 14 months. Taking time like this will allow us to give you the experience of the full scope of what (and who) is involved in creating yarn. We'll also be able to take a look at why it is important to have ranching practices to protect the ground, to have scouring and milling practices to protect our water, and to have fair wages and humane treatment for everyone along this wool chain.

Change starts with us! Truly! I have seen first hand the power we have, so let’s get this ball rolling.

Our plan is to create two yarn-bases from sheep to skein together! You will also get skeins of some of the yarns we are adding to our line-up that have already been designed.

This June you will get an introductory educational PDF and a schedule of events for the next 14 months. It will go something like this with topic details and, yes, homework!!

Physical shipments will be in the months of:

2022 July, September, December

2023 March, May, August

Each shipment includes two 100-gram skeins of brand-new yarn: you will be the first knitters to try it out! We opted for two skeins per shipment so you have enough to swatch with and knit an accessory or two. Your Master Class membership also gives you access to purchase more before it is offered to everyone else.

Also included with your shipment will be a companion PDF, where we will talk about the process and the environmental story around each yarn.

Master Class will provide you with TWELVE 100-gram skeins of yarn made from the wonderful Merino from Shaniko Wool Co. In alternating months where there are no yarn shipments, we'll be sending additional PDFs to help you learning all about the whole process, along with discussions about what exactly is a 'sustainable' supply chain and how we can support it. We aim to make you an expert by the time we are done!

Some of topics we will be covering:

• What are the Responsible Wool Standards and why is this certification important?

• Local Fiber-sheds throughout the US: what are they and what are they accomplishing?

• What are the steps involved in making a yarn? from designing the specs to the ranch to skein.

• Stories from the people along the supply chain – so we can really appreciate the connection that binds us.

• What about wear and tear? How can we lengthen the life span of our yarn and garments? We'll explore artful mending both in knitwear and cloth to extend the life of what we wear.

Since most of you are experienced fiber artists and have the tools of the trade already, we will not be adding in any extras to your packages. We want our focus to be about the yarn and creating a better approach for a healthier world!

Since we all live in different parts of the world, shipping will be calculated by weight and how far it needs to travel to reach you wherever you are on the planet.

I hope you will join us as we move forward in a more planet friendly and sustainable way!

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