My Fiber Journey

My Fiber Journey

May 14, 2020

Hi, I'm Rachel, and I'm a yarn, knitting, notions addict.  I didn't start out this way, but once I touched yarn it was unstopable.  In all seriousness, this is a little about how I got started on this wonderful, wierd, and colorful journey. 

About 10 years ago I finished graduate school.   The previous two years had been a fairly unstable time in my life.  I had gone through a divorce, decided to go back to school for my master's degree, and completely change careers from a deaf education teacher, to a Speech Language Pathologist.   The two and a half years in graduate school were some of the absolute most brutal times in my life.  I ate very little, and slept even less.  However, I made it out, and quite successfully I might add.  But at the end of that two and a half years I was lost as to what to do with myself.   I had dabbled in crochet, but it never really clicked in my mind.  No matter how hard I tried, I couldn't get the flingin-flangin hook to do what I wanted it to and make the things look like they were supposed to.   Being a determined human I was not giving up!  Anyway, after graduate school, as previously stated, I was lost with what to do.  I decided to pick up crochet again and see if I could make a go of it.   For me, it was always pick it up, put it down and walk away, usually with some unladylike swear words following.  I was in a bit of a put it down and walk away swearing phase when my boyfriend at the time deployed to Afghanistan.  He had let me know that it was very cold where he was at and that he would like a scarf, a nice wool one that would help keep him warm.   Okay!  Challange accepted! 

I began hunting for wool yarn.   Where exactly would one find wool yarn?  There was a little shop, a yarn shop, ( I didn't even know there was such a place) there in town.  I called and, of course, she had wool.  After work I drove out there and there was more  yarn than I had ever seen in my life in there.  The owner asked what it was I was making and I let her know I was going to crochet a scarf for my boyfriend and asked for some good luck vibes because I wasn't very good at crochet.   "Ever try knitting she asked?"!  If I suck with one hook how am I going to manage two needles.   She grabbed a ratty looking swatch and did a couple of stitches and was like "What, so that's hard?"   Fine!  Challange 2 accepted.  I bought some pretty blue wool, a set of needles and walked out with a mistake rib pattern written on a post-it note.   

When I got home I plopped down, my bulldog Bruce beside me snoring happily and began my journey.  I must have cast on that scarf a thousand times that night until I  could long tail cast on as fast as the ladies in the video and make it look good too.  Boom! Next the knit and purl stitch because it was a mistake rib and I had to do both of them.  This...this is where the magic happened.  It was like my brain understood knitting and it all worked and translated to my hands.  It was love at first stitch.  Three days later I went back to the shop with a full scarf and asked if that was how it was supposed to look.  Well, it was, and it was wonderful.  I met some of the most amazing people through knitting.  My best friend and I connected through knitting and through the years have grown to love each other for the things we have in common and our differences.  She has been my idea developer,  my cheerleader, and sometimes my kicker in the pants when I need it. 

Fast foward 8 years or so and I have a room full of yarn, more projects completed than I can even begin to count, more that are waiting to be completed, and I am ready to start my next fiber evolution.   Dying yarn and designing my own patterns, teaching others about this wonderful craft.  Challange 3 accepted!  There is a dying studio set up, and I'm writing a pattern now to soon be published.   It just seemed that my next steps in this wonderful, wierd, colorful journey was the opening of Paisley Purl Yarn.   This is a true labor of love for me: love of fiber, love of yarn, love of color, love of knitting, love of sharing it with others.  I hope you find your journey as wonderful and fullfilling as mine has been.