Tag Archives: handspun yarn

Recent Yarnings…. Milagros and Worry Dolls!

New to the gnomegarden etsy shop, and spun in limited quantities, are the Charms yarns.  Trouble dolls are not new to art-yarns, but these have a bit of a story behind them…ready?

These are inspired by my girls.  Like a lot of kids, both of them have a penchant for talismans, amulets and magical thinking.  With the stress of this past fall and winter, Lil took to some pretty complicated before -bed rituals.  She was having such a had time sleeping, so I dug out a box of old worry dolls from my own treasures.

She started using them ardently.  Each night before bed there was the telling-of-the-worries, but also, the dolls were very real for her, so they had to be free at night.  You know, to do their work I guess.  That started out with a very organized placement around her pillow–

add a bunch more dolls.  Um, the cup– that’s full of cardamom.  Yes.  We played “dreidel” at the Holidays and for lack of pennies, I grabbed the giant jar of pods in the pantry.  I might have also mentioned something about the scent of them being comforting to me… and maybe as I was trying to get her to STOP dreideling and go to bed, that she should take the pods with her because I thought they might just help her bad dreams…  Ker-plunk.  Its like that falling-blocks  computer game, but with parenting steps and miss-steps.  Suddenly Cardamom pods had to be a part of the nightly ritual.  Oh, and that cup also has all of her baby teeth mixed in with the pods.  It does.  I dunno about that one…( cue voodoo drumming. )

Inevitably, the mornings brought a gorgeous sleepy-eyed girl with worry dolls and cardamom pods all tangled up in her hair.

SO around the Holidays I made my friend Sue at Lovely Yarns a gift of a yarn inspired by this story. It spun like this– and it smells so nice. :)

I spun in a few Latin American “miracle charms” or Milagros for good measure. While not of Latin descent myself, I have been fascinated by these since my friend Cat told me tales of them from a trip to Brazil.:)

Milagro refers to an ancient aspect of Hispanic folk culture: small silver or gold votive offerings in the shape of arms, legs, eyes and other body parts; animals, fruits, vegetables, etc. These milagros are often attached to statues of saints or to the walls of churches/shrines.  In the classical sense, milagros are offered to a favorite saint as a reminder of the petitioner’s particular need, or they are offered to the saint in thanks for a prayer answered.  If, for example, someone has a sore arm, a tiny silver arm is hung on or near the favorite saint; the farmer who hopes that his pig will bear him many healthy piglets, asks his patron saint for intercession, and pins a pig milagro on the saint’s robe. Milagros can be flat, three dimensional, tiny or large; they can be of gold, silver, wood, lead, tin, bone, wax or whatever the petitioner desires.

So I’ve been working them into some yarns as a sort of magical-intentioned-adornment.  I like the idea of a garment or object made from the yarn that feels sort of cosmically hopeful or even protective.  That’s how I like to think of them anyway. :) here’s a few shots.  I have a bunch of really bright offerings right now and will keep them coming in various colorways until the blessings are all spun up. :)

bless y’all.

( If you click on the photo mosaic, you can see a larger one.)

That’s all for today.  Have a great one!



Posted in Etsy, Fiber Arts | Tagged , , , , | 2 Comments

Good morning!

It’s a fog-soup morning here in my crumb of Maryland. I’ve been so busy dyeing and dyeing these past 2 weeks.

I am getting ready for a fiber festival on the Easter Shore of Maryland.

I’ll be teaching a class on Sunday at the Upper Room Studio– More on that next post.

Have a great day!

Here is the scoop from the museum site:

Annual Fall Textile Arts Festival!

Second Saturday

in October 2009!

Don’t Miss It!

The Julia A. Purnell Museum’s annual textile arts festival takes place the second Saturday in October each year .

Festival admission is free, and so is admission to the museum on this day.


Misty Meadow Alpacas
Handpainted yarn, roving, Dorr Mill wool, alpaca fiber rugs, and rag rugs

Seaside Siren
Felted wool bags and jewelry

Embroidered jewelry, buttons, and ornaments

LuckyGirlz Alpacas
Live alpacas! Alpaca products and nature materials jewelry by Green Dog

Daye Dreams and Postage Stamp
Soaps, lotions, and giftbaskets

Home Sweet
Textile company specializing in block printed, environmentally friendly fabrics and home goods in original designs

Pizza Shoppe Inc.
Pizza and other food

ALA Church
Hamburgers, hot dogs, drinks, etc.

Coastal Cottage Soaps/ Liberto’s Art
Handcrafted natural bath soaps, laundry soaps, dog soap, crocheted spa cloths, dishcloths, and hand-painted canvas floorcloths

The Fine Needle
Snow Hill’s local yarn store

Return to Splendor
Tatted items, knitting accessories, hand-dyed cotton threads for tatting, drop spindles
Upper Room Studio
Handmade fiber creations, spinning and knitting equipment, fibers, etc.

Sage & Thistle
Native American and Southwest style jewelry, including dreamcatcher earrings, beadwork, stone necklaces, dreamcarchers, and sterling silverwork

Gregory Road Handspun
Lovely handspun yarns in a variety of fibers–alpaca, superwash, a variety of wools, and more.

Heidi Wetzel
Traditional and contemporary baskets that are utilitarian and decorative, and woven wall hangings.

Bead Obsessions
Knitting with beads demonstration from 10am – 2pm

Shelby B’s Designs
Stitchmarkers, handpainted yarn, and roving, some inspired by Harry Potter

Bizzie Lizzie Creations
Handcrafted bags, purses, totes, and accessories

Generations Tie-Dye
Hand dyed tie-dyed garments and accessories, including baby/layette, children, adult, scarves, scrubs, playskills, and more

Sand In My Stitches
Hand-painted yarn and stitch markers

Wooly Bear Beads
Hand-made felted bead jewelry

Teresa Levite Studio
Hand-dyed fiber (wool, silk, bamboo, etc) and yarn, commercially dyed spinning fibers, drop spindles and spinning wheels

Society for Creative Anachronism
Demo of Middle Ages fiber arts and clothing


Julia A. Purnell Museum
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Updated Mushaboom Gnomegarden

“We’ll collect the moments one by one

I guess that’s how the future’s done.”

That’s just one of my favorite songs.

I named one of my yarns Mushaboom this go round, in it’s honor.

I just finished a big update at the gnomegarden etsy shop.  Here’s the scoop:

Here is an update that was a long time coming :)   ! go to the ETSY! Please  share it with your fiber loving friends and family!

Look for more frequent updates this Spring with lots of spinning fiber, and luscious yarn.

Many of the yarns in this update look fabulous in combination, thus alleviating the ever present question “well, what would I do with one skein??” :)   If you need more ideas though, there is a fab website of low yardage genius at simple patterns to knit with 1-285 yards of yarn and on Ravelry for  “free knit patterns– 285 yards or less”

Please visit me this Spring and let me know how you are!
xo Dawn

Posted in Etsy, Fiber Arts, Music & The Soundtrack to My Madness | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment


Here is a taste test for you…

Hope to see you Sunday!

Marigold says– “That’s a MESS mama! a pretty mess though….”

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Homespun Yarn Party-palooza and some fibery photos.

It’s that time of year again!!!
I am impatiently awaiting the Homespun Yarn Party–
( click to visit, natch)

Here are the stats, straight from the site–

What: Yarn Party! Check out local yarn vendors, sit and knit, meet new people!

Who: All your favorite local yarn dyers and spinners, plus some extra crafty goodness! And all our knitting/crocheting/spinning friends (you!) of course!!

Where: Historic Savage Mill |8600 Foundry Street, Savage, MD 20763 | Just off I-95, plenty of parking!

When: Sunday, March 21, 2010 – 12 PM to 5 PM

Why: Who needs an excuse to get together and craft?! We wanted to get together and spread some fiber love!

In addition to some great crafty vendors, we’ll also have:

  • free lessons on knitting, crochet, spinning, and maybe more
  • fabulous door prizes to be given away throughout the event
  • weather-permitting, a sit and spin/crochet/knit area out on the deck

And we’ll be collecting knitted and crocheted items for local charities!

Admission is FREE!

I can tell you that this is the most amazing day of fiber fun and community!  I am delighted to be a vendor there again this year.  I will have loads of hand spun and fiber–batts & rovings– to tempt you.  Please come enjoy the day with us!

I also happen to have a few photos in their contest.  Voting is open until this Friday– go vote for your faves, there are some lovelies!!  You can see them on  here.

I’ve got 30 pounds of fiber in my Rumpelstiltskin-world right now.  More news and photos to follow!

xo Dawn

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