Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Camp Plucky Fluff Registration!

Tomorrow morning (Thurs, March 1) we begin taking registrations for Camp Pluckyfluff/Taos!  I am so excited about this I can hardly stand it.  I'll start answering the phone at exactly 9:30 a.m. and will take registrations in the order your calls come in...if you call and get my recorded message, rest assured your call will be returned in the order in which it is received.  I'm taking my vitamins and getting a good night's rest in anticipation of the excitement.  :0)


IT'S FINISHED!!!  Joan has spent spare moments this last week adding the fringe to this most amazing shawl.  It is even more beautiful  than I  imagined it would be.  I love the way the top folds over like a shawl collar...this also keeps it from sweeping the ground if you don't happen to be 5'12" like I am.  :0) 

These pictures were taken late this afternoon when the wind was ripping with some pretty nasty cold air.  We opted to stop with these and not go for the ultimate shots.  I think they're nice enough for you to get a good idea of what I've been up to.  I love Great Adirondack yarns!

Last weekend's felted bag class with Merce Mitchell was very fun.  Eight students and eight bags later...each was totally amazing and a piece of art in its own right.  We'll be offering more felting classes this spring and keep an eye on our website for info...and I'll be sure to send out information to those of you who are on our Taos Sunflower e-mail list (if you're not...please sign up now on our What's New page of our website).

Also...I've had a request for Terri Ranck's "Tie One On" class (see our What's New page if you're not familiar with this class).  We are also taking names for the next "Handspun Heaven" class.  If you are interested in either of these classes, please contact us at the shop and we'll add you to our list...soon as we have enough students for another class or two, we'll invite Terri to come to Taos to teach.  --Martie

PS...The Pluckyfluff bible, "Handspun Revolution", is now in stock.  Give us a call and we'll have your copy on the way to you in no time!

Thursday, February 22, 2007

Is it a full moon?

I must say the last month has brought us some of THE strangest experiences we've had in our three plus years of business.  I am starting to wonder if the moon has been stuck on full...or if everyone's just having a bad winter...or or or...I just don't know what is going on. 

The long and short of it is that we've had more than a few requests for returning items either very used or not even purchased here...and with these events have come some verbal assaults on us that were completely out of line.  We have always had a clearly stated and posted return policy and there should never be any discussion beyond what's posted.  Most of all, I have to say that it hurts us to be treated this way, when we've tried so hard to provide the best customer service you can find in a yarn shop.

Just when I thought we'd heard it all, yesterday I received a call from a woman who purchased a sweater knitted with yarn from our shop.  She washed it and obviously did something wrong, as it felted up.  When she was unable to salvage it, she decided to lash out at us, saying we owed her replacement yarn so she could get another knitter to knit it again.  When Connie politely told her it was a circumstance out of our control, she threatened to report us to the Better Business Bureau.  Honestly...what is going on? they always say, one bad apple spoils it for the rest.  Because of the apparent inability of some people to understand our previous return policy, we now have, starting today, a new policy:

All sales are final.

If you are purchasing non-sale yarn for a project and are unsure how much you'll need, we'll hold up to five skeins for you for 30 days.  Beyond that, there's no negotiating.  I am very sorry to have to take this drastic measure, but I feel it's the only way we can stop these unhappy events from happening.  My most sincere apologies to those of you wonderful customers who would never dream of behaving in such a way!  --Martie

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

A sad ending

I'm heartbroken to report that Kara passed on Sunday morning.

She loved Taos, loved learning to ski, and most of all, loved her knitting.  I will always remember the day she told me that she thought that knitting was what she was meant to do in her lifetime; knowing, even in her beginner days, how important it was to be in her life.

There are no more words for this tragedy.  Thank you for your prayers.  --Martie

Saturday, February 17, 2007

Saturday report

This week started with the horrible news that our Sunflower Kara, who worked here a couple of years ago, was in a terrible car accident last weekend and is in critical condition in an Albuquerque hospital.  I am putting this out to you because I believe that we can all send our love and prayers to help her, wherever this journey may take her.

Moving on to happier things...I am almost finished with the Great Adirondack shawl.  I will show you a picture, taken earlier in the week.  It was a gloomy day and I don't think the colors really show; it is very bright and cheery in person.  I will get a better picture taken and posted when it's finished, fringed, and blocked.  Img_0356

Knitting this has been so much fun!  I am going to have separation anxiety when I finish it...the same way I feel when I finish a book that I wish would never end. 

Great news:  for those of you who knew Sheila and Ruth, the founders and former owners of the Gypsy 360 Cafe next door...well...ta da...they're BACK!  They've opened a new restaurant in the Overland Sheepskin complex called Maverick County Cafe.  At this time, they're open Tues-Sat from 11:00-9:00 and Sundays are open for brunch from 9:00 a.m.-2:30 p.m.  As always, the food is fantastic.  Tell 'em we sent you if you get there!    --Martie

Wednesday, February 7, 2007

The Jewels of Taos

I decided to share what actually came off my wheel last weekend.  One day was spent carding batts of wool and other fibers, and two days were spent spinning those batts into what we call Jewels of Taos.  These yarns are seldom seen on the line in the shop, as they've ended up being saved for Terri Ranck's "Handspun Heaven" classes.  These, too, are being stashed for those students who'll take the next class.  This is the class we never get to advertise because by word of mouth, we always have a long waiting list.  You can see photos of the class project on our website.Library_0002

These last few days have been gloriously sunny and warm.  We even had the doors open in the shop for a short time this afternoon.  Warm weather brings a brief glimpse of this spring's coming mud-season...between mud and slushy snow, I barely made it the 2.5 miles up my dirt road to get home tonight.  The mud just gives those tires a mind of their own!

Thanks for the great response on our new Homegrown Handspun album...we've had several calls, several sales, and we are happy you like our work.

I'm now headed to my rocker to work on the most exciting project to be on my needles in some time...The Chevron Butterfly Shawl from Great Adirondack.  For those of you who subscribe to Knit n'Style, this beauty is featured in the current issue.  I'm doing this to hang in the shop and kits are available at the shop.  It uses approximately 26 different yarns in various colors and textures and is a real showstopper when finished...we saw it at the trade show last month and it honestly takes your breath away.  Ok...enough to knit!  --Martie

Saturday, February 3, 2007

A Sunny Saturday

I'm pretty excited.  It's Saturday morning and from where I sit, the vast expanse of three consecutive days at home holds the promise of lots of accomplishments.  First up: split pea soup in crock pot. Second: head upstairs to spin.  The only thing that will break my reverie this weekend is a trip to the ski valley tonight for a green chile cheeseburger...but I can face having to leave, knowing it means I don't have to cook dinner. 

This week we hit a milestone...we finally got our handspun yarns on the web.  If you haven't already figured it out...look to the upper right hand corner of this page and see the link to our album.  Our plan at this point is to update the album every week, on Friday afternoon, so keep watching for new yarns.                                                                                                                      Library_0004

More snow this past week!  I am in heaven.  I have officially scrubbed all plans to leave Taos until spring.  I don't want to miss a minute of this incredibly beautiful winter we are having.  On that note, Mr. Sunflower called me outdoors with my camera this morning to see an ice sculpture growing on our dormant Russian sage bush (it is directly below a leaky rain gutter).  Here's a little sample of what it looked like.  Ah...the simple things in life.  I am blessed.  ---Martie