Get to know Alina

Get to know Alina

We are in the second week of the MY Make Along 2016, and it is time for the first interview with a designer! Since Alina has graciously offered her La Flor pattern as this week’s prize, I thought that it is appropriate to ask her to be the first guest. And because I want YOU to get to know her, I collected questions via Instagram and the Facebook group :) So here they are, your questions and Alina’s answers! Enjoy!

The countdown has begun!

The countdown has begun!

In 3 days the MY Make Along 2016 will officially start! Exciting moment for me – it is the first time to organize such an event and I am a bit overwhelmed by the amount of details that need taken care of! So let me give you an overview of the stuff that I’ve done this week! :)

The MY Make-Along 2016 update

The MY Make-Along 2016 update

After the official announcement of the MY Make Along 2016, I have to say that I am amazed and deeply thankful by the warm receive and the enthusiastic response so far! First of all, the Facebook group is growing nicely – we are already over 100 members! And I like the fact that we are such an international group, with fellow crafters from quite a lot of countries – I counted Netherlands, Belgium, Spain and USA! I hope that many others will join and we can make the group a friendly and supportive virtual space, where everyone can ask, give advice or just share the progress on their chosen project. 

The MY Make-Along 2016

Or how I started to feel like Oprah

The MY Make-Along 2016

Ok, so here is what I have secretly plotted for a few months now, I call it the MY Make-Along. Is not a knit-along, not a crochet-along but more than that! It is an event dedicated to knitting, crocheting or weaving, a celebration of fiber arts, crafts and makers. 

Identity and balance between fast forward and slow yarn

Identity and balance between fast forward and slow yarn

Not long before I left to Romania, I had a chat with a wonderful lady. It was about moving forward in full speed, always coming up with new things and about identity. It so happened that these topics were on my mind for some time now, as I was struggling to keep balance when making sure that this small family business that is Moeke Yarns develops. 

About the good and the bad, about tears and joy

About the good and the bad, about tears and joy

Why is it that every time I want to write a blog post I have to choose between writing about the good or writing about the bad? A good strategy for building a brand that transmits values such as security, professionalism, success would be to choose to write about the good and kind of forget about the bad. But, I am not in this yarn making business with the aim to create brands, so here is a post (long one also, sorry about that) about tears, joy, frustration, excitement, friendship and disappointment, all in equal quantity and intensity. A mishmash of contrasting emotions. You would expect that they would cancel each other out and I would be perfectly in balance, right? No, that does not really happen, and to be honest I am a bit of a wreck oscillating between the negatives and the positives.

My La Flor sweater

My La Flor sweater

Yes, this is a blog post about a different yarn than Moeke Yarns and the pattern that I knitted in this yarn. Maybe strange, some would say, but I don’t think so. Every yarn is special in its way, and better suited for a project than other. And I am not only referring to the yarn’s thickness, but also to drape and general feel of the end product. And for this pattern I had something else in mind than Moeke Yarns – I had in mind a slightly oversized sweater, with a robust character. I was not looking for drape and elasticity, and definitely not for lustre and a perfectly uniform appearance. No, I wanted a yarn that was rough and full bodied. I knew it has to be wool (or at least most of it) because for me, nothing beats wool. 

My first me-made garment

Or, how to learn to sew pj’s almost without tears

My first me-made garment

My first (and very ambitious) piece I wanted to make as part of my Me Made May challenge: pajama pants. I wanted to make some instead of buying because I like corky prints and I am a tactile person (some fabrics I really can’t stand to touch!). I found it always very hard to find the perfect piece that would check all these boxes for me. The logical step: learn how to make stuff myself. And here is the story of my learning process, plus the mistakes I made. I hope that any of you who want to learn a new craft but are still hesitant about beginning, will get some inspiration from my experience. 

My Me Made May 2016 challenge

How about a virtual sewing party?

My Me Made May 2016 challenge

In my last blog-post I talked about my desire to re-think and change my making behavior. I was unhappy with my erratic, unstructured, unfocused ways and I wanted to make more of my ability and desire to make things. I want to build something - useful and functional items that complement each other and form a coherent unity. In other words, I want to work toward making a handmade wardrobe. 

Creating and making with intent

Some resolutions while waiting for May to come

Creating and making with intent

Some days ago I discovered a new podcast, brought to us by the lovely Kate @aplayfulday. Kate talks about living a meaningful and creative life where making is central. And so, while listening to her last podcast episodes, especially this one where she talks about the meaning of local for her as a maker, her words stroke a cord in me. I started to think about why do I have this need to make things, why is it that when I see something that I like in a shop window or online, I immediately think “Can I make this?”.  Am I so cheap, that I don’t want to buy anything or is it something else? 

About changes and plans for the future

About changes and plans for the future

Now that I shared with you about our struggles and challenges, it is time to share about the changes and plans for the future. It has become clear to us that Moeke Yarns needs to grow. What we did not know exactly is the way to move forward. But my trip to Romania and the intensive schedule of meetings, brainstorming and discussion with all the parts involved resulted in a short and long term plan. Of course, nothing is carved in stone and we can only hope for the best. 

About the challenges of making yarn the old fashion way

About the challenges of making yarn the old fashion way

I was quite nervous about the reaction to my post yesterday. I cannot express what an amazing feeling I got when I read your reactions and encouragements. It means so much to us to know that we are surrounded by such a supportive community. Your kind and supportive feedback gave me extra motivation to keep on writing a follow up post about the challenges of making the yarn the old fashion way. 

On why I had to travel to Romania

On why I had to travel to Romania

As many of you know, I traveled to Romania during March. I want to share the reasons for my trip, a kind of confession that I wanted to put on paper for quite a long time now. I didn’t do it because being openly honest about Moeke Yarns, me and my family felt like a difficult thing to do: I did not want to sound like I am a completely ungrateful whiner. 

A new fiber mill, a new partner

When I start to consider that there is a master plan after all

A new fiber mill, a new partner

Do you know how sometimes it feels that everything is just meant to be? When you have that feeling that tells you that you are in the right place at the right moment? Or that the coincidences are just piling up screaming: “this was meant to be”? I am going to tell you a story full with coincidences. And these coincidences lead to a wonderful new woolly adventure that will allow Moeke Yarns to grow and develop in ways that I did not think would be possible!

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