Thursday, November 27, 2008


For anyone who has tried to phone me here in the afternoon.

Sorry, but I have to go home early.

The photo is of my office door, on the outside a cold wet murky farmyard and the east wind. The photo doesn't show the gaps very well, but believe me there is lots of day light and wind and rain.

My fingers don't normally start to freeze until miday (unless I am dyeing) and by about one o'clock my hands are going numb too. I don't mind the cold, but sitting here in my coat with the heater on seems stupid, when I have a nice warm house 2 mins away.

Luckily I am managing to get all the dyeing done in the mornings, and of course I have the laptop at home, so inbetween answering e-mails and stuff I am doing LOTS of designing.

I have just finished the Starry Bessie (photos and pattern to follow when we get some sun) and have just started developing a new product - many thanks to the Bessies Blanket Ravelry girls - :-) What would I do without your help?

Love Amanda

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Ravelry Happy Dance

After several weeks of preparation and a steep PDF learing curve I finally have my Ravelry pattern store up and running.
At the present I have the 5 Bessie patterns, but will be adding a couple of sock patterns and the new Bessie when its finished (next week I hope)
All the patterns have been re-vamped with more details about measurements, yarn needed etc and photos

And here it is…..
What do you think?? :-)

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Inside Loop - Winter 08

My lovely freinds at The Inside Loop have made The Natural Dye Studio the featured business this edition. Several photo's including me under a lot of wool.

For those of you who don't know, The Inside Loop is a really fab on-line British magazine, run by Diane and Kate.
There are some gorgeous patterns in this issue, I just love the vulture bag and the seahorse mitts.
And there is Amiga using our very own Chi, which has a 10% discount code, which all being well (fingers crossed) will give you a 10% discount.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

And talking of PDF

I have just written 3 of the Bessie patterns in PDF, can't put them in the dye studio shop as I can't make them free postage, so have opened a etsy shop for them, along with other Bessie stuff.

Am goin to add the sock patterns and some other stuff.
What do I do when I have run out of patterns to convert???????


The other thing that is taking over my life at the moment is PDF files.
I am busy turning all the patterns into PDF and am sooooooooo proud of self - :-)
The first one looks so fantastic, I can't wait to finish all the others.

You may have guessed I am very impatient, as I get bored very easily and easily obsessible

Dropped off..

Have I dropped off the world??

No - I am still here, well on my sofa most afternoons (when I am not dyeing)
I am totally obsessed with this...................

(The world's most rubbish photo and you only get to see a little bit of it)

It is Starry Starry Night Bessie and the first Bessie I haven't got bored while making it. The block/motif is a really simple one, but the arrangement of blocks complex.

My arms hurt as I am crocheting so much, but I can't wait to see it finished, watch this space I am getting near - :-)

Friday, November 07, 2008

Thanks for damp support

Dear everyone who mailed me

Thank you for your words of support in my cold damp crisis.

And please do not be alarmed the dyeroom is staying exactly where it is!!
There is no way I could dye wholesale, let alone anything else at my house.

And todays cold update is.......
Its pouring with rain, puddle on the office floor and the dyeroom is freeeeeeeezing (I would use very strong language here, but don't want to offend anyone - :-)

love amanda

The Mirasol Toilet Dollys

If you are not on my mailing list you may have missed this

All the Mirasol Charity Toilet Dollys are now listed on ebay UK.
Please do lots of bidding, I would love to sell all of them so we can raise money for the Mirasol Project.

We went to dinner with one of the project founders while we in London for The Knitting & Stitching show.
He was a lovely man, very passionate about the project,
says it is so sucessful they now have a waiting list for children who want to attend the school.

The best way to find the Dollys is from the page on the website, each dolly has its ebay auction address on its page.

And as a big favour can you tell all your freinds - :-)

Wednesday, November 05, 2008


Its so cold and damp and murky here at the moment that I am seriously considering shutting down the showroom and taking the office home for the winter.
It was ok last winter as I had Heidi to keep me company and I could ignore all the problems, but Val's only here a couple of hours each day.
Its lovely in the summer, but its yuk at this time of year.
My office door is rotten, has bits crumbling off it the whole time, when the wind is in the right direction and it rains I end up with a big puddle on the office floor, need my wellies on just to get to my desk.

And I am soooooooooooo pissed off with my broadband connection, which clicks off every 10 mins, means the computer crashes and then I have to start all over again - thank god Blogger saves your posts as you write them, otherwise you would never be reading this.
I think its the damp, the printer is the same takes it about an hour to warm up, if I try and print anything too soon the carriage gets stuck..

Keep thinking about the nice warm empty room I have at home, I am sure the printer would be happier, the home connection is more reliable and there isn't a howling gale coming under the door......................................

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Its good!!

I have copied this entry from some of my Ravelry posts.
A lot of you have asked publicly and privately about the new Starry, Starry Night Bessie, well until it looks the way its going to when its finished I am keeping it top secret.

However here’s a teaser. The photo is of a early test sample, its not the right pattern, in the right order and some of the colours are different, but the final Bessie has a lot of the same elements - :-)

I have recently come to realise, I am not making crochet/knitted throws, afghans or blankets, I am making quilts.
Back in the distant past I used to make a lot of bed quilts - most of the sold or given as gifts.
I was part of the Ipswich Quilters Guild and one of the members I used to know came over for a chat at Ally Pally and the first thing she said was I like your quilts! I also had a fellow stall holder who was a patchwork shop owner telling me the Bessies were like quilts.

Sitting for the last few nights obsessively crocheting I realised they are right in a way, I am designing as I crochet and thinking about them in the same way as I did about the quilts.
Had a eureka moment about 11.30 last night, looking at the Starry Starry Bessie on the floor trying to work out which bit to do next, the finished throw revealed itself to me - its good, very good - :-)

Now all I have to do is finish it, when can I go home??? It is work - honest!!

Monday, November 03, 2008

Sooooooooo quite

Sooooooooo quiet - where is everyone.

What have I been doing???
Wholesale, wholesale and wholesale!!
Spent the whole weekend winding sample skeins for new customers, 1.5kgs into 10 gm skeins, watched all 5 Harry Potter films - :-)
My arm hurts now, but have to do more today.

Working on 2 new Bessies
Stared a sparkle one, only have a photo to show of the test blocks

Think it will make a perfect baby shawl or blanket, so soft and delicate.

And the other one Starry Starry Night Bessie is amazing!! No photo, but I know you are going to love it, am totally addicted can't wait to finish it!!

Just have to finish the samples first! And what to watch this afternoon while winding, might be lord of the rings, might be pirates of the caribbean or star wars, don't know as long as its something I don't need to concentrate too hard on - :-)