Thursday, August 29, 2013


My former piano teacher told me that Robert Schumann once tried to strengthen his individual fingers so he could make them stronger and more productive. He would tie back one finger at a time and exercise the others. I bet it was his ring finger that vexed him most. He probably thought, "I could probably knit a sock learn a concerto in a day if only this pesky right ring finger weren't in the way". After about 4 days he probably had to go to Ye Olde Walgreenes and buy a new support glove or something. Just speculating...

I have some some aran weight on the needles. I am about a quarter done with the Moderne Log Cabin blanket by Mason Dixon. The yarn is Blue Sky Alpacas Dyed Organic Cotton. I love it. I might have to start stockpiling this yarn now that I am not dyeing cotton anymore. 
For weeks I have had these yarns sitting on my dining room table (a table on which we never seem to dine).
I get to keep the messy hanks for myself.
They are destined to become the Road Warrior Shawl by Lisa from Sifu Design Studios. Recognize the pink & yellow yarns? I haven't decided yet if I want to do the crochet or the knit version. I have enough yarn for both.

Knit Version
Crochet Version

Monday, August 19, 2013

New Product : Soap of the Month

I have something new in the shop! Actually, I have several new things, but this is the one that I am most excited about right now -- Soap of the Month! 

Indulge yourself with a new bar or two of handmade soap delivered straight to your door every month. Every bar you receive will be a different in some way. All the bars you receive in a 3 month period will be different scents, but they will also be different designs, colors and types. Some bars will be on a luxury base and some will be on my basic coconut oil and glycerin base (which is pretty luxurious on its own).

I enjoy making exfoliating bars, so count on at least one bar of scrubby goodness.


*Some bars may contain non-vegan additions, such as goats milk or honey. Please let me know if you prefer all-vegan soaps and I will accommodate your request.

* Club sign ups are ongoing. If you order by the 10th of the month, your order will ship the current month. Soaps ship on the 15th of each month.

*Gift options available.

Here is a list of my current fragrances. Please let me know if there is a fragrance that you absolutely must avoid or any fragrance family that you have a strong aversion to.

Summer Honey (all natural, not vegan)
Vine Ripe Tomato
Festival of Lights (apple, lemon, cinnamon, nutmeg)
Rose Garden
Lavender & Basil
Euphoria (EO/FO; jasmine, rose, sandalwood)
Cashmere & Cotton* (pomelo, bergamot, vanilla, sandalwood, musk, hints of patchouli)
Christmas Wreath
Cedarwood & Sage (EO/FO)
Brown Sugar & Fig
Green Apple
Lime Mint
Tangerine (EO)
Lime (EO)
Lemongrass (EO)
Cherry Vanilla
Tangerine Lime (EO)
Coconut Lime Verbena
Witches Brew (patchouli, cinnamon, cedarwood)
Perfect Pumpkin

Friday, August 16, 2013

Customer FOs: May

It's once again time to catch up on a summer full of Dyeabolical FOs! I have no idea where the last month has gone, but it seems like just yesterday I was on an airplane headed off for a week of vacation. Now here we are a full month (plus) later and I'm just 2 shorts weeks away from starting the next semester.

Let's get on with the FOs (finished objects), shall we? A finished object is any item knitted, crocheted, woven, felted, spun or otherwise transformed from Dyeabolical yarns or spinning fibers into another form (e.g. yarn knitted in to mittens, warp crocheted in to dishcloths, fiber in to a felted object, dyed top spun in to yarn).

Lynne made a series of chemo caps for a friend of hers, including this Liffey hat using the BFL Hard Twist sock yarn. I just love this! (project page)

Amy knit up a great pair of Naga socks out of the old Ego base in Shulkie. I think these would also be great in any of the Dyeabolical colors or bases. (project page)

Jamie was productive in May and knit two pair of Mixed Wave Mitts using the rainbow mini hanks. There are so many different ways to arrange the colors in these - they'd be great for any of those mini hanks you've been collecting. (project page)

In another amazing use of mini hanks, Jess used her highlighter minis in a Daybreak shawl. This is one of those amazing projects that makes you wonder why you didn't think of doing that first. And how cute is that model?! Love it! (project page)

Melanie whipped up two pair of socks in May - first up the Skyp Rib Socks using Tenacious Tencel Sock in Bordello. These were knit as a gift for her mother in law and I can't think of a better present. (project page)

Then she knit a pair of Simple Skyp socks using Tenacious Tencel in Lucy. (project page)
Both pair are nice and cozy looking!

Joan also finished a pair of socks in May - these are the Seagrass socks made with a one of a kind hank of Super Ego. Another great pattern for variegated yarn. (project page)

I (Kara) also managed to finish up a pair of socks in May - these are Hermione's Everyday Socks using Strong Arm Skinny in Blood Orange. I loved this pattern and how it worked with variegated yarn - it's simple enough for travel/group knitting, but has enough of a pattern to entertain. Plus it's a Harry Potter inspired project, which just makes me happy. (project page)

Finishing off our socks for the month, Lill did a little bit of stranded sock knitting in May & made these gorgeous Florisse socks using Alter Ego in Katatomic. (project page)

Courtney whipped up a Traveling Woman shawl out of Tenacious Tencel Sock in Wicked City Woman. Gorgeous! (project page)

Shawna used her Superhero mini hanks to whip up a bunch of Dyeabolical hexipuffs for the Beekeeper's Quilt. (Click through to her project page to see many more pictures of the awesome puffs.)

Moving on to handspun, Tracey spun a BFL/Firestar blend in For the Love of Pants into this awesome yarn. Yarn like this makes me think ever so briefly about taking up spinning. (yarn page)

Courtney (of the previously mentioned Traveling Woman) also spun up a BFL/Firestar blend in May in the Ewe Knit Yarns color. I admit - I love the sparkle of the firestar in these yarns. (yarn page)

Kara spun up a couple of different Dyeabolical fibers in May. First up, she spun some rolags into this lovely pink yarn. (yarn page)

And then she spun some merino/firestar batts in Yo-de-lay-hee-hoo into this great gradient yarn. (yarn page/blog post)

And last, but certainly not least, Sarah spun up a portuguese merino in Paris, At Last into this beautiful yarn. Lovely! (blog post)

PHEW, y'all were busy in May. As always, if you'd like to see your Dyeabolical FO featured here, let me (Kara) know either by sending it to me on ravelry (karamichele) or sending me an email at starmonkeybrass(at)gmail(dot)com. 

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Flashing the Stash

Earlier this week I spent a few hours going through the stash and taking pictures. Time to flash the stash.

Don't judge. It's not all mine. See the top 3 rows of grey, navy, and brown? Those belong to the other fiber artist that lives here. After many years of wedded bliss, we finally merged our most important assets -- our stashes.

I admit, I am shocked at the amount there is. No, not that kind of shocked. The other kind of shocked. I actually thought I had a lot more than I do. Yes, I realize how crazy that sounds. Obviously I have a lot of yarn and how much do I need when I never have time to knit anymore? And yet...I think I need more, yes? YES.

Monday, August 12, 2013

Sale & Update

Sale time? SALE TIME! 15% off now through 8/18 using coupon code "AUGUST". Good on all items. Note ship times on dyed to order items.
And now an update, Strong Arm Skinny base is temporarily back ordered with the mill. Any orders for Strong Arm Skinny placed after 08/05/13 will be delayed an extra 1-2 weeks (about 4 weeks total from order to ship). Tenacious Sock and BFL HardTwist make excellent, if not superior, alternatives to Strong Arm Skinny for knitting long-wearing socks. Both are currently in stock.

Saturday, August 3, 2013

New Patterns

As I promised, two new patterns have been released. :)

Orange You Toasty- a cabled hat using a hank of superwash merino worsted yarn. I used the Tequila Sunrise colorway of Dyeabolical Superwash Worsted.

Skeleton Mittens - an intarsia in the round mitten pattern that goes all the way up to your elbows. Don't let the "I" word intimidate you. I swear intarsia in the round is easy to do! This pattern calls for a DK weight yarn - 100 grams for the main color and 50 grams for the contrasting color.