I must say, Van is chock-full of talented people! Many of which work in fibre I might add. Vancouver is a lot more DIY than Montreal (where I'm currently studying) and those DIYers tend to have a larger web presence than most artists I know here, so it works out well for me as I watch what's happening at home from a distance. It's important to me to be in touch with what's going on in Vancouver; I started this blog to celebrate such things after all. The fact that I am far away doesn't change that :)
So, there are a bunch of exciting things going on that I want to share with you. First off, congrats to Alison Ross whose gorgeous Cathedral Grove socks where published in the current First Fall issue at Knitty. I love that she used Sweetgeorgia yarn too. Go Van!
And speaking of lovely patterns Jane Richmond is having a 3 for 2 sale. So far I've got my eye on the Audrey and the Classic Reglan Pullover. I'm stoked on trying out Portuguese Knitting for the Audrey, what with all that purling (I'll do a purling garter stitch). BTW I have finished my Gemini but haven't blocked or photographed it yet. It's amazing though. I can't wait to share it.
Over on the Sunshine Coast Kim at Unwind Knit & Fibre Lounge is celebrating her recent purchase of Aurelia Wool & Weaving. She is now the sole distributor of the lovely New Zealand fibre! Unwind is quite a fibre destination with this exciting addition. Congrats Kim!
Event-wise there is currently a textiles exhibition at the Silk Weaving Studio that I think you should check out. It's titled TEXTiles and features pieces by many talented local fibre artists, including Ana Sousa and Farideh Birani who both graduated with me at Cap in 2010. The fact that they are exhibiting alongside our talented instructor Ruth Scheuing is really exciting.
Coming up this Saturday is Baaad Anna's Knit in Public event at Hastings Race Track. They are meeting on the West side of the grandstands at 2pm. And if I do recall Baaad Anna's is having a mini sale coming up too. Check her blog for an update on that soon I'm sure.
I'm SO looking forward to being in Van in August. I'll be teaching some natural dyeing, indigo dyeing and knitting workshops while I'm there. More about that soon I promise. If you're curious I've announced a couple of the workshops already on my workshops blog over at my website.
I remember years ago when designer Erin Gibbs of Florence Ann compiled all her long hours of local fibre research into a fabulous guide which came in PDF form. For the longest time it was on our links page and every once and while I'd draw your attention to it on our Facebook page. Now she has moved it into the form of a website: Local Fibre (www.localfibre.com)! Yep, a BC, Yukon and Washington State specific fibre website!! Don't you just love it when other people do your homework for you? I am very thankful that Erin has.
Some awesome features include searchability by fibre-type or region, and each listing has detailed info on what each producer offers. For example, when I searched "llama" (above pic shows results) I found two listings, one of which is Semiahmoo Suffolks in Surrey, BC. Their profile shows me that not only do hey produce llama fleece (and manure), but they also offer washable lambskins, raw fleece and rovings, as well as fresh-frozen lamb.
For those fibres enthusiasts who would like to be updated on any additions that get made to Local Fibres, may I suggest subscribing to the Local Fibres RSS feed?
Thanks again Erin. You rock!
Janna Maria Vallee is a tapestry weaver, longtime knitter, and 2013 graduate of Concordia University's Fibres and Material Practices program. In her art practice Janna combines textiles and socially engaged media. She founded VY in 2008.