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Off The Shelf with LoobyLou Yarns

From Shearing to Shawl!

From Shearing to Shawl!
A while ago, (in another life) I was the proud owner of three Alpacas. Before I brought them home, I helped out with their shearing at Bird Farm Alpacas, and  had great fun getting hands on with them. To top it all I came away with their fleeces to process.

I started with Daphne's fleece, and when I began to sort it, I found a fair amount of a lovely peachy beige fleece amongst the white - when she came to live with me I realised she had a golden patch on her back which had given me this lovely colour. So I picked it out and processed it separately, and ended up with a lovely big batt of honey coloured soft fluffy cloud.

Once it was washed, dried and carded I spun it up as finely as I could (not easy for me!) but I ended up with 430 metres of almost 4 ply with a few bits of added texture. Enough for a fairly big shawl, not enough for a garment. I wanted something simple to show off the yarn and spent days searching for the right pattern but couldn't find anything that I felt was correct, or that I had enough meterage for. There was plenty of smaller patterns but I wanted to use every last bit of Daphne and not waste any!

So in the end I just cast on three stitches and started to increase, then added some sections of yarn over knit two together followed by stocking stitch, and knitted until I ran out of yarn. And I am so pleased with the result - my Daphne Shawl. Simple but pretty, you can see the texture and colour of the yarn - and its so so soft. Daphne was a pleasure to work with and I'm sure she will be a pleasure to wear although I'm not trying it now with the little warm spell we are having! I am sure she will be worn a lot in the winter though....

I hope you are all enjoying the warmth at the moment, and are keeping healthy and well in these difficult times

Happy making, and thanks for reading

Tina xx Continue reading

Big Changes for LoobyLou Yarns - April 2021

Big Changes for LoobyLou Yarns - April 2021

CHANGES FOR LOOBYLOU YARNS

At last things are looking more positive and we may be able to begin to get back to some sort of normal within the next few months...what a year it has been hasn't it? For lots of us for lots of reasons the past year has taken its toll on many of us. Here at LoobyLou Yarns we have taken the 3rd lockdown time to re-assess and reconsider what we are trying to achieve and as a result we have made some drastic changes.

Some of you will know that in 2018 we sold our smallholding in Wales to move back to the Gloucestershire area as our beautiful Granddaughter Zoey was very ill. The reason for us leaving behind our dream life was so that we could be close to Zoey and her brother George, and be able to help and support my son and his partner in caring for and coping with her illness.

Sadly, despite fighting really hard, Zoey died in August last year, aged 4 years old.


                                      


Since she died, life has been a strange mixture of grief and chaos - chaos because LoobyLou Yarns and Mint Plants have had to open and close again and adapt to being in lockdown, and during lockdown both of our online sales have grown and become a big new part of our businesses. Whilst being fabulous and amazing, this has led to me having no time to process both mine and our families grief, no time to be the support I wanted to be for Zoey's parents and brother, not enough time to properly run LoobyLou Yarns and absolutely no time to be the creative 'maker' person I really am.

So something simply had to give before my brain popped. And so after much thought and heartache I decided to step back from working so much and to close both of my Bricks and Mortar shops. It was not an easy decision as I really do think Retail is something that is within me, is something I am really good at and is definitely something which I love to do. But my family have to come first, and I hope everyone can understand why I have made the decisions I have made.


   

So although LoobyLou Yarns will not be opening its doors to the public again tomorrow, we have definitely not gone away! I am going remain as a 'local' online shop, and hopefully the customers who have been so amazingly supportive during the past year continue to do so now. I am continuing to offer free local delivery, and also a click and collect service from Mint Plants in Wotton (Mint has now taken over the whole shop at 24 Long Street and it looks like a jungle in there!)

And who knows what might happen in the future, once my brain has got itself sorted and back in some sort of order - I have lots and lots of ideas bubbling away under the surface.

For now, I will be working for 2 days at Mint and taking the rest of the time to spend with my family, hopefully being the support that I want to be and hopefully actually being a help to them. I will also be making a few new product lines in Recycled yarns and fibres which will be sold in various outlets (watch this space...)

         

I wanted to thank each and every one of you who has supported LoobyLou since we opened in 2018 - its been a blast, I have met so many wonderful people and discovered the lovely town of Wotton under Edge, a little treasure trove of independent shops and absolutely fabulous food and coffee outlets.

Please visit the website, message me if you need any advice and pop in to Mint for a chat (and a plant maybe!) and hopefully I will see you all sometime soon

With lots of love and a million thankyous   

Tina xxxx

Continue reading