Friday, June 26, 2015

Technicolour Bunny Vision

This time of year it is like every day and every week is double the length, maybe, just maybe, because I work very ,very , very long hours to get everything done before the Bendigo show and then straight after , Mapleton craft camp.
Last night, or should I say this morning?, it was 5:25am. I didn’t really want to know what time it was , I just wanted to get to bed. Paul however, heard me come in (mental note to self: have to work on my ninja silent walking technique and eliminate creaking floorboards), and half asleep grumbled “ and what time do you call this?!”…so I was 5:25am…and you know what? My head hit the pillow and …yes..I did a list not quite unlike Arya Stark in the Game of thrones, only not about wanting death to enemies, but making a list of what tasks I still had to tackle. Bad move! I stared blankly at the deep dark abyss of the ceiling and …could not fall asleep….at all…I did in the end…but not fast enough, because before you know it the animals start bellowing out for their food and the world wakes up. I am convinced I am on the fast track to becoming a Fibre Zombie…

All in all, it has been a successful week: the cashmere fling tops are all prepped and dyed and dried and labelled (all 20 kilo’s of it!!!), the Qiviut Tundra tops (about 3 kilos) are all dyed and drying, the bunny bison bliss tops (about 3 kilos) are dyed and ready to be braided and labelled and more minion yarns are already dyed, dried and labelled and packed. And, all the rare sheep breed adventures are prepped and ready to be dyed.

The studio is slowly but surely filling up with tubs and bags filled with fibery treasures for the biggest show in Australia : the Bendigo Sheep and wool show starting on the 17th of July.

There is still a lot more to do ! and I am not even talking about the clubs that need to be sent out in July when I am hopping around in Queensland straight after the Bendigo show. It is, yes, totally mental ! a good way.
Safe to say, anyone who would hate what they are doing would pack it in , in about 5 seconds seeing the immense workload of living on a farm and preparing for shows. Seeing I am still at it in my now 11th year !!! is saying something: I love it and yes, I am stubborn…..and passionate……just the right amount of nuts (but I hope in a good

On tonights’ blog I was going to tell you about something else that might hit the interest button: dyeing and custom orders. Apart from all these shows and updates, I also do custom orders. Lots of them. I am going to share my latest one with you , because I do think , as I have said before, that there are lots and lots of elements you need to be aware of and willing to communicate and ask of your customer.

I won’t go into pricing or anything like that. That is something you have to figure out. All I am saying is not to undervalue yourself for the amount of work that you will be putting into it. Because yes, it is a lot of work and it is totally different from getting in your dye studio making something that you feel like doing or what is in your head. Doing customer orders can be very stressful. But, it doesn’t need to be! Not if you ask the right questions and you and your customer are on the same page.

The drama starts when the customer tells you , he or she wants you to spin a yarn in an appr 8 ply in the colour “green” and you say yes…..why you ask me? Well,, there are about a trillion gazillion colours of green. So, before you do anything at all: ask a LOT of questions! Here is a checklist:

1. Ask what ply, thickness of yarn is needed and how much !
 Make clear that there is no way in hell that when they run out of yarn, you can just whip something up that is exactly the same dyebath and thickness and consistency. You have no idea how many times I get emails from people saying “ we bought some yarn of you 1,2,3 yes even 6 years ago..we ran out..doyou have some more of that creamy, reddy, orangy, purple coloured yarn???” eh….no…

 2. Ask what colour(s) !! don’t be satisfied with the answer “ greens” or “blues” or something “beige”…ask for specifics. Make sure you are talking and envisioning the same thing Ask for pantone colours or ask for a sample or a photo /inspiration sample picture of what the customer wants. Then you have more to go by and you are sure you are talking the same language !

3. If you thought that was it you are sadly mistaken…lol…it’s okay if we are talking about a solid colour but what if the customer wants different colours? Ask the following: do you want a long colour repeat or a short one? What do you want the knitted or crocheted garment to look like colourways? Would you like it tweedy, random or would you like it to go from dark to light or from light to dark? The more questions you ask, the better for you and the better for the customer. It takes the guess work out if it and ofcourse the stress for you when you are working away at the custom order, when you don’t have to ask yourself continuously “ I hope she likes it !”

I am working on something special for a lovely customer at the moment and I thought I’d share the process with you: It is a big job, about a kilo to be dyed and spun in Lush bunny tops (eco merino, suri , silk, angora, tencel and cashmere.These are the steps:

a tiny piece of dyed fabric that was sent  adn had to be used as the inspiration.
Deconstruct the colours and the way they interact. Try and figure out what kind of pigmenst can make the pigments interact together and envisage the dye process and how it will work together on the tops. know your pigments...and your colourwheel !

not a very good I hope you get the idea: there are apps ouot there that can deconstruct a photo for you in seperate colour elements. I used a couple in the past but I still trust my eyes better and my interpretation on how some colours will change interacting together in the fibre. Whatever you can use to train your eyes to do this deconstructing is good. From the tiny sample I deconstructed the colours I could get using : indigo, lichen, chamomile flowers and bloodwood with a pinch of cochineal.  Very important is the sequence too. You don't want to end up with a muddy colour combo..not on the tops and not when you are spinning it !

The customer wanted it to look random, not stripey or going from light to dark. To accomplish the no pooling and the tweedy effect I spun this comparable 10ply back on itself for each and every 100gram tops that was dyed in the same sequence, ensuring there were nice colour overlaps and interactions between colours together with some sections of lichen and moss green parts. 

and this is what the yarn looks liek all skeined up...I am half way through the project and hope to have it all finished next week !  Have fun with  your projects and deconstructing colours and putting them back together again!

And now for something completely different: the Tour de France is almost starting ! July 4th !! And that means only one thing well, wait …oh .it means fun ! and Tour the Fleece !!!
Check my Ravely group ( see linkie :    ) there is heaps of spinning and sharing and at the end of it all a Mountain of prizes to be won !!! now, I ask you, why wouldn’t you want to join the team IxCheL Bunny ?!!!! C’mon still time to sign in to join the IxCHeL bunny Tour de Fleece team and do some serious stash diving to get your Tour fibre together.

 I have been asked all kinds of questions in regards to who , what or when or with what and what is allowed in this Tour e Fleece…so to make it all easier for everybody I will repeat the "rules" here :

 1. Anybody is more than welcome to join as long as they adhere to the following IxCHeL Rav group rules: there will be no bullying, disagreeing, talking behind backs (pm to any group members to back stab or do negative things to others), no backstabbing, no snobbery ! It has come to my attention that this has been happening in heaps of other groups and if we allow that kind of terrible behaviour , it will mean that a great forum will die. No way ! I will not let that happen in my group, so that means that:

2. Yes you can spin with anything you want! Yeah !!  It does not have to be a phang or spindle my husband Paul aka Lair of the Bearded Dragon makes. I do not care what type of spindle , nor should anybody else! We  love ALL spindles in our group and ALL wheels. They are beautiful works of art. No bullying by anybody will be tolerated ! If you are a fan of a certain maker and do not like seeing what others love to spin on…please join another group…If I even get a whiff of a disagree button being pushed on any photo there will be grave repercussions. The IxCHeL group is a tolerant happy fun safe place to do your craft, how and with what makes you happy !!

3. I would prefer you spin up your IxCHeL fibres , I am sure you can get your hands on some if you don’t have any. However small our farm is, I sell to anybody and I am very accessible : just pm me : I am always happy to enable ! Even if it is just a bit of bunny fibre you can add to your Tour de Fleece project that comes from our farm, that would be nice !

4. Yes, there is a mountain challenge: meaning that around july 23rd when the athletic boys in lycra are sweating away to get to the top of the mountain and maybe back down again , we are very sympathetic and do our bit. This year I thought it would be nice to make a “mountain yarn”. Now you can interpret that anyway you like: spin a slubby yarn!, spin a yarn in the colours of a mountain, make a mountain art yarn ! Anything goes! Yes, you can spin little rocks in your yarn if you like !

5. Post photos of your inspirational Tour de Fleece journey ! posts with photos will go in the running at the end of the Tour to win a huge amount of prizes.

6. Join the IxCHeL Tour de Fleece  team and have fun!

Remember: the club sign ups are still open but not for very long! There are only a few spots left in the sock yarn club !! If you have missed out on this round of fibre and batt club goodies, please email or pm me and I can put you on the list for the next one and send you all the necessary details. One less worry to check off your list ;-)

Have a fun weekend Creating your Dreams!

Please don't hesitate to contact me at any time if you have any questions okay? Always happy to enable.

All my contact details are to be found at the end of this weeks blog entry.
Have fun !!!

IxCHeL Sock Yarn and Minion Yarns !

Merino, nylon blend (90/10)
100+grams/ 3.5 oz AU$26
4 ply fingering weight, 380meters/100g

One skein of IxCHeL Sock yarn (Or minion yarn) will knit a pair of socks !
Minion Sock yarn

Minion Overalls

IxCHeL Bunny Tote Project Bag !

Bunny print on nylon/polyester fabric. Measures 40cm wide and 35 cm high, with two interior pockets, a zipper and two sturdy handles.
Great project bag !

Bunny print

How To Order:

1. You can email me on ixchel at rabbit dot com dot au or ixchelbunny at yahoo dot com dot au
2. message me on facebook or ravelry where I am Ixchelbunny.

I will email you right back with all your order details and payment methods.

Any questions? Any custom orders for yarn or dyeing fibre? Please don’t hesitate to ask! Always happy to enable.
Thank you so much for your help and support !

New IxCHeL Club sign ups still open but not for long !

(til quotas are reached or until July 1st)

Clubs July, August and September 2015 !

For all our international club fans there is a possibility to ship all three clubs together to save on postage if you want :-) Just pm me and enquire about the options available.

IxCHeL Fibre Club July, August and September **FULL** NO MORE SPOTS LEFT

The subscription is for a period of three months and you will receive one special hand dyed top/roving per month to the value of AU$24
All the tops will be hand dyed and will be especially made for the members of Ixchel Fibre Club ! Price to join the IxCHel Fibre Club #25 and receive your special hand dyed top :)) for three months (Clubs July, August and September 2015) is AU$72 + postage (parcel post or airmail). AND there are good value double serves available !!!

For Australia : single serve $72+$28 postage (parcel post), double serve $134+$28 (save $10) or triple serves $199 (save $17!)
For USA + Canada: single serve AU$72+AU$51 (Airmail) double serve AU$134+AU$51
For UK,Europe, rest of the world: Single serve AU$72+AU$60 (airmail) Double serve AU$134+AU$60
For Asia: Single serve AU$72+AU$45 (airmail) Double serve AU$134+AU$45
If you want to receive a fibre surprise every month then join the IXCHEL FIBRE CLUB #25 now. Numbers are strictly limited ! The July 2015 Club is going to be shipped out end of July. Payment via direct deposit or credit card or paypal. Just PM or email me your details

The IxCHeL Sock Yarn Clubs July, August and September 2015 -ALMOST FULL-

Every month for three months (Clubs July, August and September 2015) you will receive: enough hand dyed luscious yummy yarn to make a pair of socks or a lush shawl or scarf ofcourse! (the hand dyed yarn will be exclusive for the Ixchelbunny SOCK-IT-TO-ME Yarn CLUB and will range from a sockweight yarn or a 3ply or a 4 ply); Every month a new sock pattern, tips and instructions ! Now is that GOOD or is that GOOD ??!
I will even offer a double serve for those of you who like their socks extra long
For Australia : single serve $78+$28 postage (parcel post) double serve $130 (= one skein FREE!!!) +$28
For USA + Canada: single serve AU$78+AU$51 (Airmail) double serve $130 (= one skein FREE!!!) +AU$51
For UK,Europe, rest of the world: Single serve AU$78+AU$60 (airmail) Double serve $130 (= one skein FREE!!!) +AU$60
For Asia: Single serve AU$78+AU$45 (airmail) Double serve $130 (= one skein FREE!!!) +AU$45
Numbers are strictly limited ! 
Payment via direct deposit or credit card or paypal . Just PM or email me your details 
  By the way: you don’t HAVE to knit socks if you don’t want to.. the hand dyed yarn is amazingly nice for scarves, cowls, beanies and even tops ! Anything goes .

IxCHeL Funky Bunny Batt Clubs July, August and September 2015 


Here are all the details and just pm me when you have any questions or want to be part of the funky bunny batt club Movement ;-) Welcome to the blingy dark side ;-D
The subscription is for a period of three months and you will receive one special hand dyed funky bunny batt per month to the value of AU$40 or more .
The batts will range in weight from 140grams to 180grams with luxury fibres like camel , angora, cashmere, silk, yak, llama even wolf and bison and rare sheep breeds !!!! All the batts will be hand dyed and will be especially made for the members of Ixchel funky bunny Club ! Every month you will receive a HUGE luxury funky bunny batt !
Sign up now and you will receive an Ixchel Hand dyed , super luxurious funky bunny batt for July, August and September 2015.
Price to join the Ixchel Funky bunny for three months is :
For Australia : $105+$28 postage (parcel post)
For USA + Canada: AU$105+AU$51 (Airmail)
For UK,Europe, rest of the world: AU$96+AU$60 (airmail)
For Asia: AU$105+AU$45 (airmail)
If you want to receive a fibre surprise every month then join the IXCHEL FUNKY BUNNY BATT CLUB now. Numbers are strictly limited ! The first installment is going to be shipped out end of july :) Payment via direct deposit or credit card or paypal. Just PM or email me

Dates to put in your Calendar !!


Friday July 17th- Sunday 19th, 9am-5pm

Bendigo Sheep and Wool Show

THE event of the year !!!! Not to be missed!!

I will be there in the Flower (Power Bunny) Shed again with heaps of new goodies, hand dyed and hand spun, IxCHeL new blends and rare sheep breed adventures and much much more !


Because this year is the year of the Sheep I will have a lot of rare sheep breeds from all over the world and something very very special : Qiviut and ....a truly magical Vicuna blend ! 

 Do not miss out to cuddle something special and , like last year you can win wonderful prizes again when you visit my stall dressed as a bunny ;-) and when you spend more than $100 you can enter to win a super Prize pack !!!

You do not want to miss it !


Friday, July 31 to Sunday, August 2
Mapleton Craft Retreat (Queensland)
and please sign up because this is going to be an amazing retreat filled with fibery super fun ! Lots of workshops and fun stuff planned !!!! 

Saturday , September 26th

Play day at Pascoe Vale

More about this exciting event later !

Sunday , September 27th   (9:30-3pm)

Sheep and Woolcraft Field Day , Cranbourne Public HAll (near KFC)

A perfect fibre and craft day hosted by the Black n Coloured Sheep association of Australia and an absolute MUST!

How To Order:

1. You can email me on ixchel at rabbit dot com dot au or ixchelbunny at yahoo dot com dot au
2. message me on facebook or ravelry where I am Ixchelbunny.

I will email you right back with all your order details and payment methods.

Any questions? Any custom orders for yarn or dyeing fibre? Please don’t hesitate to ask! Always happy to enable.

Thank you so much for your help and support !

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