Tuesday, August 19, 2008
Plans for the Coming Year
I have not been as good about writing in the blog since joining Ravelry, the online 'community.' Having a group in Ravelry takes up quite a bit of time, and I have found that writing a good long update about yarns, marketing, future plans, etc. has just fallen by the wayside. So, today, I am going to attempt to catch up. Most of what I have to tell you is about plans for the future.
About two years ago, I began to import Blue Faced Leicester yarn from HW Hammand in England. Last year, they made me their US distributor and that is when my involvement with my English supplier began to grow. Last week Andy, partner in HW Hammand (Bluefaced.com), came to the States and spent four days working with me here in the studio in Virginia. We found that we share the same work ethic, and got so much done. Here are the highlights of our long work days.
Wool2Dye4 will soon become the first US company licensed by the British Wool Trade Board and authorized to use their logo. This distinction allows us to attach registration numbers to Blue Faced Leicester yarn, assuring the customer that their yarn is the BFL from Britiain, and authenticating the fiber content. BWTB has so many wonderful supporting print brochures and other products full of information on British Wool. Being able to seal boxes with the official British Wool stickers will give me the greatest satisfaction. I have to say that I just love their professional level of artwork. So very nice!
Andy brought along with him a suitcase of sample skeins. New textures, new combinations were tantalizing. I have chosen some of a new British product, the British Alpaca fiber in four natural, scoured, colors: White, Faun, Brown, and Black. These spinning fibers are just lovely and deep in color, and silky to the touch. Also, chose a new lace weight for Wool2Dye4 website.
I suppose now is the time to let out the news that I am going to start a new website in the next few months, probably November or December but definitely by January 1st. It is called UptownStitches, and this will be my opportunity to carry upscale yarns of color. I have come across some truly lovely knitting yarns which just do not fit the Wool2Dye4 website, so I decided to go into a full line of knitting yarns in a slightly different way than most other brands.
Uptown Stitches will feature Scrumptious as our premier line. Scrumptious is ... well, just a wonderfully soft yarn. It is a blend of 55/45 Extrafine Merino with Silk, and it will be presented in three weights: Lace, DK, and Aran. At first there will be six colors introduced for the winter season, and then six new ones in the spring. We will be introducing the winter line a little later than most other yarn companies, as this is our first introduction of the line, but we'll catch up! Most yarns will be solid garment knitting yarns, though there will be a few semi-solids in each collection.
Over the coming year, I will be involved in the launch of Scrumptious, as the US distributor for this yarn. We will attend trade shows, launch an advertising campaign, and attend a major retail show as well. I'll post a picture of Scrumptious for you and you can see how the silk makes this wonderful yarn just glow.
I am working with a new group of web designers, all young and energetic, and am excited at the level of talent these folks represent. They are moving in the next couple of weeks, as their own business grows, and I will be right there pecking on their window on their first day open for business. Lots of new and exciting changes for Wool2Dye4, Uptown Stitches and for me in the coming year.