Merino is a fabulous fiber for spinning yarn, wet felting and needle felting!

Merino Collage

The merino is one of the world’s most ancient breeds of sheep.  Merino fibers are extremely fine, enabling them to bend far more than traditional, coarser wool fibers.  This makes Merino wool feel soft and luxuriously gentle next to your skin.   But the merino’s fleece is built for extremes – breathable in summer, insulating in winter, yet exceptionally soft and lightweight.

Because Merino can absorb moisture vapor, it tends not to create static electricity, helping it to drape beautifully and be less likely to cling uncomfortably to your body than other fabrics.

• Softest and fineness of all the wool types
• Fine crimp
• Good elasticity
• Excellent loft

Staple length for merino is 70mm or 2.75”
23 to 25 micron wool

$2.00 per ounce at 7 Yaks Design

All 7 Yaks Design fibers are hand dyed with professional dyes that are both lightfast and washfast for long lasting, fade resistant color.

The Domancic Method of Bioenergy Healing was developed over 35 years ago.  It is unique in its simplicity and effectiveness, scientifically validated and practiced all over the world.  It restores the health of adults and children – when other means fail.  Since 1993 Zdenko Domancic (Doe-MAAN-cheech) has been teaching his method at the Bioenergy Healing Clinic in Slovenia – the largest clinic of this type in Europe.

Bio-Energy healing is an effective, holistic technique for the treatment of physical illness, emotional blocks, mental obstacles and spiritual issues.  It is based on the understanding that each of us is a complex, interactive energy system.  If you could see yourself under a powerful electron microscope, you would see that you are made up of a cluster of ever-changing energy in the form of electrons, neutrons, photons and so on.

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When you are healthy, life energy – or chi, flows freely through your energy field, providing a sense of self-assurance, groundedness and a feeling of being in harmony with yourself and the world.

If you have been experiencing a significant amount of stress, persist in holding onto past emotions, or have developed a belief system that is out of alignment with your life’s purpose – the energy within your bio-energetic field will become stagnant or even blocked.  This stagnated energy tends to crystallize around core issues that you have not been ready to face, or simply did not have the specific knowledge or tools to do so.

Although you may remain unconscious of what is going on in your energy field, your enlightened mind is completely aware of what is happening.  To restore the balance, it will seek to make you conscious of the problem –  through the “alarm bells” of illness, depression, addiction, relationship disharmony or some other type of trauma.  You may become confused, lost or even fearful, as you search for a means to help you return back to health.

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I had the pleasure of attending a 4-day group clinic with Michael Ramsey of Gateway Healing, who studied in Slovenia with Zdenko Domancic.  It was a truly wonderful experience!  The other women in the group were all healing professionals including a massotherapist, Reiki healer and other energy work practitioners.  Over the course of the clinic with Michael, I also learned more about Reiki.

It comes as no surprise to me that Dr. Mikao Usui discovered the principles of Reiki.  Usui Sensei was raised as a samurai from childhood, specifically in the martial arts techniques of aiki.

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If you’re interested, the 5 principles of Reiki are:

1.  Don’t get angry today.

2.  Don’t be grievous – don’t worry.

3.  Express your thanks.

4.  Be diligent in your business – I will do my work honestly.

5.  Be kind to others.

…. Seems like a good starting point for everything in life!
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For me, the martial arts and energy work started in upstate New York with an introduction to the possibilities of both from Wayne, an Aikido martial artist.  I learned how to work with my energy, and how to channel my energy across spaces.  I know it sounds a bit ridiculous, but we would channel our energies back and forth between each other like a game of tag.
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To date my study of martial arts spans 14 years and includes Aikido, Kwanmukan Karate and Hapkido.  When you sink into a martial arts stance, you are attaching your body to the earth.  To hold the ground or to launch the body through space during a throw matters not, there is an attachment of the body to the planet, and from this you build your martial arts power.  At the conclusion of my group clinic with Michael, I felt once again grounded to the earth.  I have continued to work with my energy and feel stronger each and every day, and more importantly, I have a greater sense of peace!

Michael can work with you too!  Please check out Gateway Healing for an in person clinic if you’re in Ohio, and if you’re not, distance healing can take place – to anywhere in the world.
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The spiral is a spiritualized circle.  In the spiral form, the circle, uncoiled, has ceased to be vicious; it has been set free.

― Vladimir Nabokov

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The design of the swirl pattern is based on the symbolism of the spiral pattern.  This swirl pattern has long been used as the representation of constants,  movement and change.  On a personal level, it can represent the internal growth of a person throughout life, and the gain of new perspectives.

A person is constantly changing; spiraling down life’s many roads.  It has also been used to describe the movement of the universe, and archaeologists think this was its original meaning.  Ancients Celts used it to map the progress of the stars during an eclipse.  We find it remains constant in our modern lives as well, perhaps a hold over of ancient memories used to remind us of our need to adapt constantly and not remain stagnant.

I think ancient Celtic artists used the spiral symbol as a mind-altering creative process in which the act of creating a spiral in their work released their minds into a creative splendor.  Perhaps that’s why we see them dominate the Celtic world, out of a strong desire to step outside the physical and enter a gossamer domain, where dreams and intuition take hold of awareness.

 

Swirl Drop Spindle Collage

7 Yaks Design drop spindles are cut acrylic and oak.  It’s as much fun to watch the spindle as it is to create yarn… and it spins like a dream!  

Are you looking for hard to find and discontinued yarns like the Sanguine Gryphon, Artyarns, String Theory, Schaefer Yarns, Vintage Rowan and more?
Check out the Stash Diet!

Yarn Collage 1

Yarn Collage 2Yarn Collage 3

With back to school on the horizon, it’s time to stock up on your fall and Holiday knitting & spinning stash at 7 Yaks Design !

Back to School Sale

Experience the delight of spinning alpaca!  Luxuriously soft, long, and available in a range of beautiful natural colors, discover why spinners love this fiber.  Alpaca is a long fiber with no crimp, so it doesn’t stretch and bounce the way wool does.  Sheep’s wool contains a lot of lanolin (grease) and most spinners like to scour the wool to remove excess lanolin before they spin it.  Alpaca doesn’t have the same grease content, and it is also hypo-allergenic.

Alpaca is…

Lightweight
Soft Luxurious
Very durable
Hand-washable or dry-cleaned
Little static
No pilling
Dyes well
Blends extremely well with other fibers

Suri Alpaca locks can be long and curly or straight fibers that are silky, very fine and very soft.  There is a wide variety in the color of the fiber such as, white, fawn, reddish brown, gray, dark brown, and black.  Suri Alpaca fiber is ideal for making soft loftier yarns for knitting.  It can also be used for felting.

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Huacaya Alpaca (pronounced wuh-kai-ya) wool is denser than the Suri Alpaca.  It is soft and very easy to spin and felt.
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- ALPACA FOR HANDSPINNING -
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Hardcarders:
Alpaca can be handcarded, using handcarders with fine teeth to create rolags.  Handcarded alpaca will spin into a soft lofty woollen yarn for knitting.


Drumcarders:

A drumcarder with fine teeth will create large batts for spinning.


Blending With Other Fibers:

Adding 20%-50% wool to alpaca gives the yarn more elasticity.  You can either spin a single of alpaca and one of wool then ply the two together to make a nice woollen yarn, or wool can be added to alpaca before spinning using handcarders or a drumcarder.

Blending 10%-30% mohair will make a fluffy yarn and give it a fuzzy look.  Silk lightly carded into the alpaca will add sparkle to your yarn.  Angora rabbit wool with alpaca makes a luxury yarn.  This yarn will be extremely soft and very warm.

You can use a drumcarder or handcarders to create various shades of alpaca, such as blending black alpaca with white alpaca will produce gray, or any number of colorful blends with dyed alpaca.

Elasticity can also be added to alpaca with nylon fibers such as Snow Mountain or StarbrightFirestar will creates a shimmer in your yarn, similar to the addition of silk.  Since alpaca fiber does not have much elasticity on its own, you will find adding wool or nylon – or some of both, will create a yarn with memory which is especially important when knitting socks!

Uses For Alpaca Yarn:

Alpaca yarn can be used for knitting, weaving, and felting projects – including wet felting and needle felting.

All 7 Yaks Design fibers are hand dyed with professional dyes that are both lightfast and washfast for long lasting, fade resistant color.

The luxurious fleece and pelt of the Gotland sheep are what sets them apart from other breeds.  Gotland pelts are world-renowned for their superior quality.  The pelts sell for a premium, due to their smooth silky locks and soft handle.

The Gotland’s fleece is considered to be among the best in the world for spinning and weaving.  It is the very high luster and well-defined crimp, along with the array of silver and gray shades that make the fleeces highly desirable to hand spinners, knitters and weavers.

Gotland Collage

Traditionally a dual purpose sheep, this fiber was established by the Vikings by crossing Karkul, Ramnov and native Swedish sheep.  These three blends created the Gotland sheep with a surprisingly long staple length of 6.5 inches.  The fiber has a clearly defined even curl and staple that is soft to the touch.  The fleece is typically 29 to 35 microns in diameter.  Lambs wool can be in the low to mid 20’s micron range.

Gotland fleeces are similar to Wensleydale in luster but are not quite as soft.  It is generally used as an outer wear fiber.  Gotland wool is strong, lustrous and smooth when spun worsted and is light and soft when spun into a lofty woolen yarn.  The wool felts easily with a smooth surface and strong hold, even when lightly felted.  This is what makes Gotland wool the “felter’s favorite”.

Gotland wool is fine, long, lustrous and dense and can be all shades of grey from silver to charcoal and dark enough to be almost black.  Traditional Gotland Gray is a rich blue-grey color that does not discolor in sun exposure.  This is a great wool to add to your alpaca to give your yarn more memory!  7 Yaks Design has natural gray roving and several hand dyed colors including wedgewood, blackberry, teal, indigo, midnight and crushed grape.

All 7 Yaks Design fibers are hand dyed with professional dyes that are both lightfast and washfast for long lasting, fade resistant color.

7 Yaks Design is having a 25% OFF stock up sale until July 15th with coupon code TDF2014!

The spinning world is brimming with conversations about Tour de Fleece again this year!  TDF, as the event is often referred to in virtual spinning communities, was first organized in 2006 by Star Athena, a spinner, knitter, and designer based in Portland, Oregon.

The idea is to set a spinning-related challenge for yourself and work toward your goal each day that the Tour de France cyclists ride.  The event has grown each year with over ten thousand spinners taking part.  The Ravelry Tour de Fleece group alone has thousands of members, and hundreds of spinning teams have formed.

TDF 2014

This year, competition begins on Saturday July 5th and will end on Sunday July 27th.  It has been great hearing all the different ways in which spinners are using the event to work on techniques or tackle long-coveted projects.  The official concept is “Challenge Yourself. Spin. Have Fun.”

I hear many spinners say that rather than work on a specific project, they simply challenge themselves to find time each day to sit at their wheels. TDF allows spinners, en masse and in high spirit, to identify what parts of their spinning life they want to improve.  And for some of us, that simply means making time for something that has been lurking on the horizon, just out of reach.

Kaylee is having a crisis and was diagnosed yesterday with 5 bladder stones, complicated by an open pyometria. She needs surgery ASAP with vet bills to run $4000

I am having a flash sale in my Etsy shop with a 50% discount when you use the coupon code 7KAYLEEAID

2/28/2014 Update:  Kaylee has developed an aggressive infection at the suture site and may require an additional surgery to remove the tissue at the margins of the suture.

 

Hurry, the sale ends March 15, 2014.

Thanks very much for helping out my sick girl!

kaylee aid

You can also submit donations if you like via GoFundMe

What’s a girl to do when it’s cold outside and with all of that snow? 

I shall color my own world, duh!

snow dye

Snow Dyeing

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In preparation for the Great Lakes Fiber Show in Wooster, Ohio over Memorial Day Weekend, I am dyeing a huge amount of fibers!

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If you can’t make it to Wooster in May this year, the fibers are available in my Etsy shop now!

Snow Pile aka Dye Pot!

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StarBright is a wonderfully soft blending nylon.  This high luster tri-lobal nylon doesn’t have the luster level of Firestar, but it does have far more luster than Snow Mountain.  StarBright’s softness is equal to a 19 micron wool which puts it in the superfine realm.

Starbright can be carded to blend with your favorite fibers, or spun and plied with another strand of wool, etc.  It also adds memory to your yarn which makes it ideal for knitting socks and other garments where memory is important.

All 7 Yaks Design fibers are hand dyed with professional dyes that are both lightfast and washfast for long lasting, fade resistant color.

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Snow Mountain nylon is a great, inexpensive blending fiber with softness and draftability.  It’s perfect to add to your batts to strengthen your favorite spinning fibers.  Snow Mountain also adds memory to your yarn which makes it ideal for knitting socks and other garments where memory is important.

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Firestar is ideal for blending with your other fibers to add a little shimmer and strengthen your spinning projects.  A little bit of lustrous Firestar nylon can add strength to a sock yarn, sparkle to a weaving project, or shine to a shawl, scarf or sweater.  Firestar can also be added to your needle felting projects for a smidge of pizzaz.

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Colonial Wool Top is produced with South American Corriedale Wool. Easy to spin with a long staple fiber, an approximate 27.5 micron length and has an average staple of 90mm (approx. 3.5 inches). This strong, durable wool has next to skin comfort while being versatile enough for any outer garment.

Colonial Wool Top has rich, vibrant hand dyed colors. Absolutely wonderful to use as is, or for blending your own one of kind shade of batt and yarn. A favorite for needle felting and wet felting too!

 

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