Monday, December 30, 2013

Totoro

A couple of years ago I knit a little Totoro (rav link) ornament for my Christmas tree. 



Well, this year my mother begged me to knit her one too. So I did! The pattern definitely went much better the second time. I think I might possibly be getting my brain back (knock on wood there). It was pretty fun to knit, though there are a few fiddly bits, like the ears and arms. I like how it turned out and might even knit another one someday. We'll see...

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Merry Christmas!

Mount Adams
From all of us here at LavenderSheep we wish you a very Merry Christmas! Stay safe out there!

Monday, December 23, 2013

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Sheep in a Shop



Round Sheep Notions Bags in New Colors! They make great stocking stuffers. Today is the last day to ship for Christmas for the East Coast. If you live closer then you still have a couple days left!

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Pin it!

I love Pinterest. So far it is my favorite social media site. I actually start each morning looking at pins to start my day out in a creative way. Even if I never end up using the ideas it starts my brain working towards being creative.

The other thing I recently started was a board for my son. So we look at Pinterest together. He can post whatever he wants to his board as long as 1. he can identify it and 2. he actually likes it. So far I have learned about my son some things that I already know, such as him liking trains, castles, fish, and cookies. Some new things I have learned are that he likes woolly cabled sweaters and pictures of smiling girls. He is adamant about the things that go on his board too. So if you would like to follow his board for an eclectic assortment of things a 3 year old boy likes you can follow it here: http://www.pinterest.com/lavendersheep6/xavier/
If you would like to see all of my boards you can find them here: http://www.pinterest.com/lavendersheep6/boards/

Monday, December 09, 2013

Blue Christmas

I was just looking at what I had recently posted on the website and realized it was all in the same color family! Apparently I am in a "blue" mood around here! So I thought I would share! 


Top left: Leafy Bandana Cowl shown in Chunky Baby Alpaca in color Owen
Top Right: MIO Columbia Aran in color Owen
Bottom Left: Round Sheep Notions Bag in Color Teal
Bottom Right: Woven Stitch Cowl shown in Superwash Sock in color Wind Chill

Wednesday, December 04, 2013

It's Hip to be a Square!

I feel like I am in a story telling mood lately. Anyway, not too long ago I changed my website's cart so you could checkout with either Google Checkout (which became Wallet) and Paypal. Recently, I had to change it back. I personally have never had an issue with Paypal. Though I have read plenty of stories online from people who have. I know lots of people who prefer not to use Paypal either. I probably get 1-2 orders a month from people who don't want to use Paypal. So, I know I need to have more options than just Paypal.



Well, a few months ago, Google decided to no longer offer Google Wallet for people selling physical goods. In my case, that's pretty much my whole shop. It can still be used if I wanted to sell apps...which doesn't really work in my case. So, at first, my cart provider said they would be implementing a change so another service would be available besides Paypal. This did not materialize. To be fair, this was a free service, so I'm not too surprised. Anyway, I was left with the option to continue using the new cart, but with Paypal only. However, the benefits of using Paypal Cart buttons outweighed using the 3rd party service. After all, either way, the only checkout option was Paypal. Sigh...Like I said, I'm fine with Paypal, but this definitely has made my life more complicated.

Thankfully, my story has a happy ending. I was contacted by Square. As in the same people who I, and many other vendors, run credit cards through at shows! They have created their very own marketplace. So, I am slowly, but surely, adding all of my items on there. Their fees are the same as if I run a credit card at a show, which is very reasonable. They also show items out of stock as soon as they are sold if there is only one, so it doesn't have to wait for me to update it! Yay! So, I will maintain both stores. The website will continue to have Paypal for checkout and the Square Store offers up a great alternative!

The only downside is it's currently only available in the US. Though, Paypal is still international! I also accept checks and money orders through the mail and phone orders. Check out the website for more details!

Right now I only have yarn and fiber posted in the Square Store. I'm working on the rest! If there is anything you would love to see up there right away, please let me know by leaving a comment here or emailing me at lavendersheep (at) gmail (dot) com. I'll be happy to add it!

Monday, December 02, 2013

New! MIO Columbia Aran

Introducing my new yarn: MIO Columbia Aran!


For years I have looked for a way to buy yarn directly from local farmers, so I can dye and sell it. The difficulty is by the time the farmer charges enough to make a profit there isn't any room for me to make a profit too. Every time someone touches the fiber or yarn they have to be paid. So for me, I'm paying for the farmer who raises the sheep, the mill that processes the fiber first into spinnable fiber then into yarn, then finally I add my cost to dye it. It's really tough to pay all those people and make money on top of it, while selling the yarn at a price consumers will pay. The way that it currently works is I buy yarn and fiber from a distributor who gets their yarn and fibers from mills overseas, mainly the UK and South America. The mills get their fiber from large commercial farms who raise so many fiber animals they are actually able to accept less money per lb of fiber than a small local farm. 

So this problem has been on my mind for many years. I love supporting local farms. Then it struck me, Imperial Stock Ranch is located right here in Oregon. So I can make a purely Made in Oregon (MIO) yarn. Raised in Oregon, sheared in Oregon, and dyed in Oregon. Their farm practices are sustainable and practical. They use all parts of the sheep. They live with and raise all the sheep themselves. I love it. If you want to read more about them, please check out their website!

The MIO Columbia Aran is my first yarn to start out the collection. It is named MIO for Made in Oregon, Columbia, because it is from Columbia Wool, and Aran, because it is Aran weight. Aran is on the heavier side of worsted. It is so springy and warm feeling! I just want to squish it all day. I really want to make a sweater or a skirt out of it. I think all this cold weather is getting to me! All I want to do is make warm woolens out of this yarn. I'm so happy I can finally make this dream come true!

I also want to make a note that, currently, I don't have any plans to discontinue any more yarns or fibers. I love the yarns I have and will continue to dye them as long as you, the customer, love them too! I will be adding more to my MIO line over the next few months. My goal is to provide a variety of yarns fibers that meet the needs of many customers. So I will have my local line and my not so local line, so there will be a little bit of something for everyone!