first-yarn-spinning-attempt
Other, yarn

My First Serious Yarn Spinning Attempt

Two days ago, I successfully persuaded my mom to try and teach me how to spin yarn. In my eyes, she is the ultimate authority in this area. But I should tell you the whole story. Let’s start from the beginning!

My parents, who are living in the Czech Republic, started their sheep and goat farm back when I was finishing high school. Or that’s what I think. It might have been a little bit later than that, but honestly, it’s so hard to tell because it seems like it has been forever! The animals became such a natural part of our family 😊 My parents still name each one of them and form a lasting bond with those that they keep and not sell. It was very hard for them, when the old ram Byvoj died recently.

But it’s not just the sheep and goats, my mom also had to get angora rabbits for obvious reasons (they’re so soft!). And then there’s the Australian shepherd dog and the fighter kitty cat, that sometimes shows up after a month with brand new battle scars.

When my mother makes a sweater, she makes from the scratch. She uses the better wool from the sheep: washes it, hand-dyes it with natural stuff (varying from all kinds of strange mushrooms to wild flowers or bark of some tree), dries it outside under the sun, brushes it with the special wool brush thingy and then magically transforms it into a yarn with a spinning wheel.

Obviously, I don’t know the appropriate wool lingo, but I decided to give the yarn spinning a try. And yes, the dog was sort of involved. Because of lack of the right words, I will demonstrate the individual steps with pictures instead 😊

Yarn Spinning Matylda's Barn
My first spinning attempt! I did try before many many years ago, but this time I’m serious and stuff. My mom let me start with a little bit of white wool, so that I wouldn’t waste away something too valuable.
DSC_0040
All in all it didn’t came out too bad!
DSC_0047
My mom wanted to finish the yarn for me (I guess it’s called “to ply”), but I didn’t let her. “Are you seriously gonna try to do this? It took me five years to learn it and you think you’re going to learn it the first time you try yarn spinning.” Yes, I’m very stubborn, and yes, I did it. It may not be perfect, but I’m still quite proud of myself and my fist tiny ball of plied yarn 🙂
DSC_0044
The dog wasn’t too impressed by my efforts 🙂
Merino Wool
I was ready for a serious yarn project. I chose nice colors to work with – it’s the summer, so I’m naturally gravitating towards the colors of the sea. I used merino wool.
Brushing the wool
My mom showed me how to mix the colors together on the special brush. Side note: Notice the insect photobomber!
Spinning yarn
And here I am, spinning away.
Spinning yarn
This is the first peek of my yarn! Pretty good, eh?!

Next time, I’ll show you the result and what I did with it!

(Not there yet.)

river-table-runner-header
Crochet, Home Decorations

Inspired by Adirondack Rivers

I love water. I love seas, lakes and riversAnd that’s where I got my inspiration for a new table runner design from. I worked with a wonderful yarn called Scarlett, which I purchased at a local yarn shop with a very fitting name – Village Yarn Shop. The yarn is 100% cotton, made in Macedonia. I chose to use the azure blue and silver colors and a stitch pattern resembling waves, switching the colors every now and then. I decided to add 5” decorative fringe on each side.

You can purchase the one-of-a-kind handmade item and therefore support my work here:

https://www.etsy.com/listing/536444689/the-river-table-runner-11-wide-27-long?ref=shop_home_active_1

I took the photos by a beautiful mountain river in the Adirondacks.

River Table Runner by Matylda's Barn
River Table Runner in silver-azure blue color combination.

DSC_1036

DSC_1040

DSC_1032DSC_1033DSC_0622

crochet-bunnies-header
Amigurumi, Crochet

Must Be Bunnies

Whenever I hear the word “bunnies” I always remember Anya from the TV show Buffy the Vampire Slayer, who really reaaally didn’t care for the fluffy hoppy animals.

Anyway, I actually like the bunnies. We have them hopping around our backyard on a daily basis. I give you this not very good paparazzi-style photo as a proof:

Bunny

Since the Easter holiday is coming up soon, I was inspired to create a bunny. What was supposed to be a one time thing has eventually lead to not one, but three different bunny designs.

The first crochet bunny design by Matylda's Barn
The first crochet bunny design in progress. There was a lot of ends to work in! Arghh 🙂

I was quite happy with my first crochet bunny pattern, the only issue I encountered were the eyes. Somehow the eyes turned evil everytime I tried to put some white “reflection” in there. I wasn’t purposely trying to create a Bunnicula, so I had to rework the eyes several times before the bunny finally became cute.

Proud as I was, I showed the creation to my parents over Skype. And guess what – my mom congratulated me on creating another nice sheep. Arrgh. Then few hours later, my boyfriend really liked the new “dog”! Double Arrrgh.

Apparently, the ears were not quite right. The back of the bunny, on the other hand, was fine.

So I decided to give it another go and create a more “bunny-like” bunny. I was googling bunnies to have a realistic model. So here comes bunny n. 2:

Long story short – my mom still didn’t like the ears. She suggested the ears should be pointing up. I guess she has a point, but there ARE bunnies with ears down! And I have Google to prove it! But whatever, I caved and created yet another bunny.

The funny thing is: the first bunny aka “the sheep” or “the dog” got actually sold. It was sitting on a shelf in Saratoga Springs’ Crafters Gallery for less than three days.

I don’t know what is the lesson here, maybe that you can’t please everyone? But I’m definitely not creating more bunnies. Unless somebody custom-orders it. 🙂

Floppy the Bunny Rabbit Amigurumi Stuffed Toy by Matylda's Barn
Floppy the Bunny Rabbit.

Uložit

Uložit

Crochet, Home Decorations

Get Them Easter Eggs Rollin’ :)

Easter is coming and I’m willing to bet it doesn’t leave any crochet addict calm 🙂 Gotta create! Gotta decorate! Get those Easter Eggs rolling.

Naturally, I created crochet Easter eggs. But I didn’t stop at that. I wanted to make them special and because I love traditional floral ornamets, I decided to try embroidery. I don’t really have any experience doing that, but I think the eggs came out quite good. As usual, I didn’t have any specific design in my head, when I started, I just sort of “went where my hands took me”. I tried to use natural colors. I think it matches the tree branches quite nicely.

Crochet Easter Eggs
Crochet Easter Eggs – an original design by Matylda’s Barn. These Easter decorations will make any room pretty.

I created these eggs for Crafters Gallery in Saraga Springs, Upstate New York. If you’re in the area, be sure to check them out! You can also order them at my Etsy shop or contact me directly.

Crochet Easter Eggs
Crochet Easter Eggs – an original design by Matylda’s Barn. You can buy them at Crafters Gallery, Saratoga Springs, Upstate New York.
Easter Eggs - Easter Decoration - Easter Decor
Crochet Easter Eggs – Embroidered crochet decoration.
Crochet Easter Eggs - Easter Decor - Easter Decoration - Embroidered Eggs
Crochet Easter Eggs and the first spring flower! I love coltsfoot, it’s like these little pieces of gold that you randomly find by the road 🙂

I’ll be back with more Easter stuff!

Matylda's Barn display in Crafters Gallery, Saratoga
Amigurumi, Ceramics, Crochet, Other, Painting and Drawing

You Can Now Find Our Products in Crafters Gallery, Saratoga, NY!

Good news!

Our quality handmade products are from now on available at Crafters Gallery on 427 Broadway, Saratoga Springs, NY. I prepared a lot of new spring themed items for the display. If you’re in the area, you are most welcome to check them out!

Crafters Gallery
Crafters Gallery on Broadway street, Saratoga Springs, New York.

If you’re not from around here, you have one more reason to visit the beautiful Saratoga Springs with its old charm and character. You might also want to visit the local spa or come for the summer world-famous horse races. There is also many interesting shopping opportunities, some of them very old and traditional, such as the Putnam Market. My personal favourite spot is Saratoga Coffee Traders, where you can get coffee named Death Wish, which is just, well, awesome 😀 You don’t wanna miss that, right?!

Spring Collection by Matylda's Barn
Spring collection by Matylda’s Barn, so far. More items to come..!

Anyway, back to the products that are on display in the amazing Crafters Gallery. I hand-painted four new mugs, that will surely warm someone’s heart. There a sheep mug (errr, not a surprise there), a horse mug, a dog mug, and favourite – an old tree mug. The animals are enjoying the spring. Unlike us in the Adirondacks area who still wait to see the snow dissapear!

These standard-sized coffee mugs are hand-painted with Americana Acrylic Multi-Surface Satin Paints. They were left to dry for four days and baked later in the oven, so they should be dishwasher safe. However, since I haven’t tested these mugs over a long period of time, I would recommend to wash them by hand – just to be safe.

Spring Themed Mugs by Matylda's Barn
Spring themed coffee mugs, each one was carefully designed and hand-painted.

Since the Easter holidays are approaching, I wanted to design something special for the shop, that would be very Easter-y. So I naturally ended up creating bunnies. They are inspired by the very cute Rex breed. I used Lion brand Homespun acrylic yarn and premium polyester stuffing. The material makes it easy to wash.

Crochet Bunnies Amigurumi by Matylda's Barn
Hand-crochet bunnies by Matylda’s Barn. Original amigurumi pattern.

See more pictures of Matylda’s Barn products on display in Crafters Gallery, Saratoga Springs, under the article. If you’re thinking about a visit, don’t hesitate, there a lot of beautiful crafts to be seen in the gallery. From cute little sweaters for toddlers to wooden sculptures and paintings of Adirondack nature and traditions, you’re sure to be captivated by something.

Just like I was 🙂