Tag Archives: yarn dyeing

Auction Day!

Today is the first day of OMG’s Second Annual Online Auction – Spring Cleaning 2015. Click here to join in the fun! I have close to 70 auction items ranging from finished knit and crochet items to dyed fiber and yarn.

The giveaway for the auction is pretty awesome too: I’m giving away skeins of our newest yarn coming out this fall called Midwest (of course). It is a worsted weight, 60% Domestic Alpaca, 40% Domestic Merino wool, meaning it’s a yarn completely sourced, spun, and dyed in the US.

  • First place – 3 skeins of Midwest in the color of your choice
  • Second place – 2 skeins of Midwest in the color of your choice
  • Third place – 1 skein of Midwest in the color of your choice

Each bid serves as an entry and a winning bid will get you 5 entries into the drawing. The winners will be announced early next week, once the dust settles after the auction.

I am beyond excited about the event, mainly because of the successful launch of the line last fall, and what lies ahead for my little studio/shop.

I just got back the first sample knit for the spring/summer designs and it is stunning. The knitter put her heart and soul into it and turning it over to me was like I’d asked her to give up her first born. Looks like I’ll have to make one of my own soon, so she can have hers back. 🙂

OMG Updates
With the Mid-Ohio Fiber Fair coming up in just a few short weeks, I’ve been ramping up my yarn dyeing schedule. I’ve been doing some variegated colorways and regularly posting them to my etsy shop. In fact, I have over 80 listings of yarn in stock and ready to ship.

Closed Tuesday, May 12
We’ll be closed Tuesday, May 12 so that I can be a chaperone for a field trip at Peanut’s school.

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Change is a-comin’

Like so many, I am a bit disappointed with Etsy’s change in policies that have resulted in true makers being overshadowed by mass-produced items, a departure from the spirit of Etsy’s original business model. When they announced to their users that they’d be going public, many Etsians expressed outrage as they jumped ship one by one, taking loyal customers with them. My response: Et tu, Brute? Because, really Etsy, I know making money is one thing, but integrity is another.

Yes, as an MBA, I understand they probably consulted with many business and economic experts that told them the cost of many sellers leaving…leaving is probably not going to affect their bottom line one bit. Why else would they go ahead?

But yes, it is my turn to announce that OMG Yarn will be launching its own website, and will eventually close its Etsy shop, from which we’ll be able to sell our hand dyed yarns, patterns, kits, and some supplies. Our physical retail location might change a little as a result, and here’s what I have planned (the cool, fun, yarny bit):

1. New website will go live sometime in the coming weeks. I’ll also be including yarn, kits, patterns, and knit and crochet supplies online. That means when I post to facebook about the fun stuff available, you don’t have to be local to get your hands on it. In a sense, our national debut.
2. I have 420 skeins of base yarns in stock to stock up our shop and start filling orders right away. Yup, that means sweater quantities will be available on a dyed to order basis (FINALLY!).
3. The structure of business operations will change, slowly. That means moving out some yarns that are taking up room, to make room for the gorgeous hand dyed yarn. We’ll basically be a yarn shop with a prominent section of yarn exclusive to our shop (for the time being). During show season, we’ll have different hours (closed on days we will need to travel, until we can bring on a shop helper in the future…summer is very slow for us, so will not impact business too much).
4. Continued focus on the American Made and/or sourced yarns. We won’t just be carrying OMG Yarn, but some great, high quality yarns from our favorite manufacturers and an increase in the American Made yarns from some of our favorite suppliers. Woohoo!
5. New Ravelry group coming. Yes, with the new face to the business, we’ll be starting an OMG Yarn Ravelry group to help coordinate testers, share yarn, and keep in touch. I’ll let you know when that happens too.
6. Trade shows/craft fairs. There are some big trade shows and fiber arts fairs coming up and we need to be there to continue to grow. The biggest one is TNNA Columbus that I’ve been non-stop talking about. Others include the Mid Ohio Fiber Fair, and more. 🙂

So how is this going to work? Good question. We need your support. Here’s what you can participate in:

  • Come see us at the Stepping Out Vendor Fair 9am – 3pm. See our Calendar of Events page for address and details.
  • We are holding our second annual OMG Yarn Auction the second weekend in April (Friday, April 10 – Sunday, April 12). This one will be mostly yarn and a few other items.
  • We will be holding a HUGE sale on yarns that we are phasing out. Many will run up to 50% off. Sale begins Tuesday, March 31.
  • Other goodies to be announced.
  • AND of course, continue shopping at Midwest Yarn.

Other News
OMG Yarn’s next shop update will likely take place this Friday afternoon. We’ll announce when it goes live!

Thank you thank you thank you in advance. 🙂

A Quick Update

Hi there!

Yup, I’m still here, incredibly busy, and hanging on by a thread (or maybe a fiber…). Between teething babe, active 5 year old, and plotting some yarn madness for OMG, I have been pretty over worked, but I’m still here, I promise.

I’ll be finishing up and sending out our February Project of the Month kits within the next 48 hours and while the yarn cooks and dries, I’m actually building a full website dedicated to OMG’s yarn!

The shop has been quiet this week, so I hope you haven’t forgotten we’re here. As we prepare for the biggest step for our lovely little shop to become BIG, we need your continued support.

Stay tuned for a sale on OMG yarn, our annual auction, and some other fun bits along the way. Our big show is coming up quickly and the road to it is paved in yarn. Woo hoo! See you soon!

2014: A Year in Review

What did 2014 bring us?

  • New Yarn:
    – OMG yarn expanded the line of hand dyed yarn to include 5 new yarn bases and 14 different semi-solid colors.
    – The shop got in a lot of new great yarns like Donegal Tweed by Tahki Stacy Charles, Kraemer Perfection Worsted, Mesa by Tahki Stacy Charles, and more
  • New Patterns Published
  • New Friends and New Customers, plus showed us how many loyal customers we have
    My health suffered this year and for the first 7 months of the year we had very very very limited hours open (and even some spotty attendance for those few hours). The great news is that my health is stable and I’m slowly adding more time that I’m able to dedicate to the shop and yarn line. In fact, check out our “Visit Midwest Yarn” page, I just announced additional hours!
  • A New Baby
    We call the new addition to our family, Sharky. He’s growing by leaps and bounds, and even showing signs that he’ll be walking soon (meaning, he’ll be ready to pull yarn off the shelves in no time, just like our other shop helper did when we first opened).

In spite of the personal struggles, what helped me through everything were the amazing number of loyal customers I had that encouraged me and tons of great new yarn and projects that I love.

2015 will prove to be a challenge as well, but I can only hope (and pray) that this new year will bring more personal growth, a continued passion for the fiber arts, and the accomplishment of a number of goals I’ve had for a long time. We’ll be entering the 4th year in business, and this is the year that will determine whether or not my lovely little endeavor of a yarn shop/studio makes it for the long haul. So here’s a look at what my goals are for 2015:

  • Attend the TNNA Summer Show with a booth or table to begin wholesaling OMG yarn to other yarn shops
  • I had a dream of designing a series of shawls and that dream will become a reality this year. Several lace shawls are in the works and I couldn’t be happier about how they are turning out. The series will be released the weekend of the TNNA Summer Show!
  • Grow the yarn shop to fully sustain both itself and make enough of an income for our family, because working for myself for almost 3 years has proven to be the best option for us and the boys, why wouldn’t we want to continue it?
  • Get new yarn, of course
  • Attend a few of the larger fiber arts shows like Stitches Midwest, Wisconsin Sheep and Wool, and more…I don’t know if I’ll be able to do them all, but it’s worth the shot. With me being able to take off every other Wednesday now, I should be able to plan far enough in advance and dye yarn for these bigger shows where I’ll need to take 500 to 1,000 or more skeins of yarn with me.

…and more. Hey, I can’t share all the fun things I have in store, where’s the fun in that?

In order to make all of this happen, I need you! Continue to stop in and support our little yarn shop. Each skein of yarn you buy, helps us get to some of the bigger shows to really get out there. Keep an eye out for our Project of the Month posts and continue to be the awesome knitters and crocheters you are. Without you, none of this would be possible.

Plotting the Next Round of Yarn

Don’t forget, OMG yarn is now available to stash on Ravelry (click here)!

From a business standpoint, they teach you to assume that your business will always be in operation, so planning designs, colors, and yarns in advance is not a stretch, it’s the “how am I going to pay for this?” part that we worry about as the time comes. Part of the fiber arts industry – and the fashion industry too – is planning projects over a year in advance.

Vegas_Phoenix_3

OMG Vegas – Merino, Silk, Nylon, Poly Glitz blend – Color #Phoenix

So far, I have plans and rough ideas for Spring/Summer 2015 designs and colors AND Fall 2015 designs and colors. The hard part is wrapping my head around the budget – mainly because I don’t normally spend the kind of money that yarn shop operations require.

As long as we don’t run into any snags, here’s the general timeline and a little of what to expect coming in the next several months:

  • Spring/Summer 2015: New colors and designs coming by the end of May 2015 just in time for the National Needlearts Convention in Columbus, OH. I plan to feature OMG Calatrava, fingering weight, 100% Superwash Merino Wool. A theme has been chosen, and color testing is set to begin around the first of the new year. Expect lacy shawls…
  • TNNA Columbus: The BIG needle arts Summer show…Dates are 05/30/15 through 06/01/15 in Columbus, OH. I plan on hosting a table or booth to begin being available for wholesale at select shops. This is where the Spring/Summer 2015 patterns and colors will debut (and I’m already excited about it).
  • Fall 2015: Even more new colors and designs coming sometime in October 2015. I plan to feature OMG Midwest (worsted weight Domestic Alpaca/Domestic Merino blend that is one of my favorite yarn bases, so it’s named Midwest to make it one of our signature luxury yarns).

I’m looking into which big shows to attend as well. My wish list includes:

  • Mid-Ohio Fiber Fair
  • Stitches Midwest
  • Wisconsin Sheep and Wool Festival
  • Midwest Fiber Fair (happens around the same time as Stitches Midwest)
  • YarnCon

And I’m working on starting a Project of the Month club for OMG as well. This means that I’ll be curating a number of projects, both knit and crochet, that would work well for OMG yarns. I, unfortunately, won’t be able to design everything for those, so I am in the process of looking at some fun patterns online that I think will look great in our semi-solid colors that will call for one, two, or three skeins of hand dyed yarn, because I think keeping things affordable for many while supporting indie designers is important for OMG yarns.

And then when I have major pattern launches, I will feature my favorite designs for those months.

But we’ll see if we can do all of this and still have time to breathe afterwards. I’m looking forward to preparing for all these big things to come and hoping that we can continue the momentum that the shop has picked up. Make sure you continue to support our local yarn shop so that we can continue to fund these efforts.

OMG’s New Yarn and Patterns Coming Soon

The last pattern has been written and is in testing phase now, so I’m happy to say that the tentative date for our new yarns to debut will be Small Business Saturday (November 29). Barring no delays with shipping, yarn dyeing, and finishing touches on patterns, we will have kits in stock for purchase beginning that weekend.

There will be two crochet patterns available (a cowl and a shawl), and then a couple of other fun knit patterns including a matching hat and cowl, fingerless mitts, and a shawl for multiple gauges. As you can tell, the theme for the fall patterns focuses on accessories that are a joy to make and take only one, two, or three skeins. These projects and yarns are so irresistible that I knit and crocheted them all myself, I couldn’t put them down to hand off to people I had asked if they’d knit or crochet samples. Let’s just say that the excitement of working with my own yarn line has also played a big part in that too.

Everyone who pre-ordered their yarn will have it ship that week along with patterns for that yarn. I’ll also have the new yarns and patterns listed on Ravelry so that people can put their new yarn purchases in their Ravelry stashes. How exciting is that?!

Over the next few weeks, I’ll be passing along sneak peeks at the new yarn as it gets dyed and processed.

In the mean time, stop in check out new yarn available in our brick and mortar shop. We just got a ton of mini-skein packs from Frabjous Fibers and I’m itching to design a pattern or two for the gorgeous colorways that have come in and are limited in availability (as in, once they sell out, they are gone, they are one of a kind packs).

I told you there’d be a LOT of new yarn coming this fall!

On the Way

Online Auction
For anyone that had not heard, we raised a total of $945 with the online auction. That allowed me to order samples, additional dye colors for those samples, a second yarn swift for re-skeining yarn, and get started on some of the marketing materials including re-vamping the logo, new merchandise tags, and business cards. That definitely is getting us prepared for the next big step.

Indiegogo (Crowdfunding) Campaign Has Launched
It has finally launched, the Indiegogo.com campaign that is allowing us to raise the bulk of our funds to get new yarn to grow the brand. As of right now, we have $1,175 pledged of our $10,000 goal. Please take the time to read all the details of the business growth plan, watch the video, share with friends and family, and pre-order yarn. Click here to visit the campaign page.

We will be allowing everyone to choose their colors if they pre-order yarn. Due to the delay in the arrival of some yarn samples previously ordered (but not yet received) we had to launch the campaign without sample colors dyed yet. I am working on dyeing some of the samples we have received thus far and are getting those posted on the campaign as an update some time in the next few days.

We are also working with crochet designer, Barb Stanford, on a couple of crochet designs that will be exclusive to the new line. I have one knit design finished, a crescent shawl, and made a smaller version of that to photograph for the pattern kits. The crescent shawl is going to be designed and work for three different yarn gauges: fingering (1 skein), sport (1 skein), and worsted weight (3 skeins).

Once the campaign ends (October 16, 2014), we should be able to have a quick turnaround. So here’s what to expect:

  • Website thank you’s will be posted as contributions come in. This is the website where those thank you’s will be published.
  • Hand written thank you’s will be sent once the campaign ends. If you contributed at a level in which your hand written thank you is included with yarn or a pattern, expect that your product will ship at the same time as your hand written thank you note.
  • All yarn orders (reward levels $30 and above), yarn will be ordered and dyed once the campaign ends. The supplier that we’ve been working with for the past couple of years usually has a 1-week turnaround time as long as the yarn is in stock. Full days dedicated to yarn dyeing usually allows me to dye about 20 balls of yarn at a time with our current set up. I expect that all pre-orders of yarn will be shipped before Thanksgiving, but we will keep everyone updated as to any delays that should arise.
  • Pattern only rewards will be sent electronically in PDF format once the campaign ends. Please allow us that time to coordinate editing and testing of the patterns. I have several experienced crocheters and knitters available to get turnaround time for patterns down to a minimum.

Otherwise, I am thoroughly excited (and exhausted) after launching this campaign, and I can’t believe that this is really happening for us! And the original shop helper, Vin, has said I’m allowed to dye as much yarn as I want, as long as it doesn’t take over his room. 🙂

Other Shop News
We have new yarn coming in for the shop too! We have started working with a new yarn company and continuing to grow with other companies we’ve worked with in the past in order to keep the shop in full swing. The shop has definitely been busier over the past couple of weeks and I’m finally starting to get the big piles of overstock organized and put away.

And, as if I didn’t have enough to do, I have a couple of designs in the works right now for a national publication. *wink*

Finally, our website. After many trials and tribulations with the e-commerce carrier we’ve been working with, we’ve decided to close down the website that sells our commercial yarn. This blog will serve as our main web page, and our domain will point at this site at some point. Stay tuned for further updates. I don’t want to do a major switch that could delay getting in touch via email until the Indiegogo campaign is over.

Online sales of OMG yarn will primarily be hosted via Etsy once the campaign ends. It’s much more user friendly and less work for me, since I’ll definitely be focused on getting yarn dyed.