What is does dyed-to-order mean?
Great question! At Baby Cat Yarns my goal is to provide highly refined, customizable, and consistent fiber for artists. For this reason, I don't dye big hauls of yarn and keep it in my inventory, hoping it inspires you. I do not have dyed yarn on hand, other than kits.
Instead, I have around 200 colorways available to you at all times on all 19 permanent shop bases.
There are no "shop updates" here. Just full access to color on any yarn base at any time. Peak versatility for you.
Think of Baby Cat Yarns as the paint on the palette for you as a fiber artist.
1) You order by picking your colorway first. Then select your fiber base in the drop down menu. Select quantity of skeins needed for your project. Be sure to check yardage! Proceed through check out. Chill.
2) I-- (Dyer and Owner, Brit Horsfall)-- custom dye your order, and ship it to you. Honestly, as a customer, you probably won't notice a difference in your shopping experience.
3) Get your order in the mail, sit down before you open it... this fiber might knock you off your feet.
Orders usually ship around week after being placed. If you're lucky, it will ship in 3 days, if I'm booked it could be around 7 days. As much as possible I work through a "first order in, first order" out rhythm. If its outside of that window, its an anomaly and im working hard to get your yarn I the mail as soon as possible.
What kind of dyes do you use?
At Baby Cat Yarns I dye exclusively with Acid Dyes on Protein Fibers. That means wool, silk, alpaca, mohair, and nylon for the most part, unless I stumble across something else fun. I mordant with kitchen grade citric acid and wash with scent-free soap. All materials used are ones that I personally find to be gentle and low impact.
I guarantee light-fastness and wash-fastness when laundered appropriately.
Ok, How do I launder this yarn?
I handwash gently, press water out, and dry flat.
Cool-Warm (not hot) water, and a touch of wool-safe soap should do it! Color Catcher is also a safe bet! (personally, I use a dash of scent free dish soap with my hand knits and thats it)
Don't: agitate aggressively
run water on garments
Really, just treat it like the precious wool it is-- gently.
Some light color bleeding in the first couple washes is normal. I assure you your fiber is mordanted well and should be light and wash fast:)
How do I get the most even all-over color in my garment?
I recommend, since this is hand-dyed small-batch fiber, you alternate skeins row-by-row. That way any tonality, no matter how subtle, is evenly distributed throughout. This will help avoid unwanted/distracting pooling in your garment and give you a FO you are gonna looooove <3
Will my yarn be the exact color it is on my computer or phone?
So monitors vary little by little. All my yarn is photographed in a light box with a neutral grey background, hoping you give you the most accurate reading possible. I use my very discretionary, dyers-eye to make sure photos match what I'm seeing in real life. I've done my absolute best to show accurate rending of every single colorway. I recommend turning the brightness on your screen up all the way.
If you wanna see more views of each colorway in varied lighting situations, hop over to @baby.cat.yarns on IG to see more photos!
Oh yikes! Something is wrong with my order. What do I do??
No sweat, babes! Drop me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org and we will get ya taken care of.
I'm a Local Yarn Shop, do you wholesale?
You bet I do! Drop me an email in the contact tab and we can dream up a palette and select a base fitting for your customers trends. I don't offer colorway exclusivity, but who needs that when the color wheel is seemingly endless!
Aww shit. I ran out of yarn before the end of my project. Can you dye more? Will it match?
Hate when that happens. Hop onto our website, and order another skein! I'll dye it up and get it to ya, but it will be a different dye lot. Leave a few rounds of your first dye lot, and alternate rows until the new dye lot is introduced.
This is the one down side of small batch dyeing, but I also believe it points to the hands of the makers! I measure all my recipes down to 1/64th of a teaspoon of dye or even as little as a 1/2 ml of stock-- so it's as consistent as I can make possible at this scale.
Wanna avoid this bummer of a moment? Check yardage before ordering, and round up to the nearest skein. Also check gauge so you aren't caught off guard. It happens to the best of us, really.
How long have you been dyeing?
I mark 2016 as the year I dove into the deep end of the dye world in my colleges fiber program! As a Painting major and a hobby knitter, something clicked when I walked into our dye studio at Colorado State University. Finally, the palettes I'd been refining in my paintings had a place to "go" when I learned to weave, specifically tapestry works. I picked up a second BFA in Fiber Arts to make it all mesh and decided to make a career go of it!
Since then, I've clocked over 12,000 hours of dyeing. I dyed for and managed a large indie dyer in northing Colorado, logged a couple months dyeing and operating a small mill on the western slope, and have dabbled in private label projects for several years as well as commission work.
Dyeing is its own art. Its own process. It's own mystery that I am still discovering and learning from all these years later.
It is a huge aim in my work to bust the myth of dyeing being uncontrollable and surprising. That's frankly, bs. As a master dyer, hyper-refined and ultra-repeatable is the name of the game. I want every skein that leaves my shop to be recognizable, though nuanced. What you are getting here at Baby Cat is the fruit of my labor; incredibly specific color at your finger tips. Color that lasts, doesn't wash out, bleed, or fade. Color you can count on.
No speckles. lol
No variegated. lol
Semisolids forever and ever!
Even, curated, refined color is my drink of choice, and its my personal mission to make it yours too <3