Tag Archives: phat fiber

September Phat Fiber Box – Grimm’s Fairy Tales

I’m really excited to be in the September Phat Fiber Box. I haven’t been able to get samples into the boxes since May (I even missed one of my favorite themes last month) so I was extra determined to make it this time around.
This month’s theme is Grimm’s Fairy Tales – think dark and mysterious forests, old and sacred but creepy at the same time. Think of German fairytales, like Cinderella with the stepsisters getting their eyes picked out, or Sleeping Beauty asleep for 100 years behind dark thorny thickets, the dust settling over her thickly in waves of time. I even watched the Grimm Brothers movie with Heath Ledger, which is set during the French occupation of parts of Germany in the late 18th century. While it is ridiculously fictional, is a great opportunity to immerse yourself in an historical time period that isn’t French or English (Do you notice that? It seems like the only Hollywood blockbuster historical movies that are pre-20th century that are produced are English, French and occasionally Scottish, even though German ancestry is the largest in the US.
Anyways, as you all may know, I have an ongoing Fairy Tales collection of stitch markers in the shop, and naturally I was thrilled to be able to use this theme to inspire me into making more designs. I submitted three of my favorite German-based sets – Snow White, Cinderella and The Frog Prince – and then I created two new sets of stitch markers to add to those three. Meet Sleeping Beauty and Red Riding Hood!

Sleeping Beauty

Red Riding Hood

As usual, the Phat Fiber people put together selection of videos showing off the contents of this month’s boxes, and mine were featured! I’m happy to say that I’ve even figured out how to queue the video to the right moment, so all you’ll need to do is press play to watch Jessie talk about my samples. To see all of the videos, check them out here. Enjoy!

The box goes on sale this weekend at two different times, and it flies off of the shelves like hotcakes. The box comes in a couple of different formats – Stitches (yarn) for the knitters, Fluff (fiber) for the spinners, and Mixed for those who like the effect of both. If you want all of the secret deets, send me a message via email or on Ravelry and I’ll forward you the email notification I received.

Don’t forget, if you purchase anything in my store from September 1 – October 18 you are eligible for the Phat Fiber Superbox Giveaway! The Phat Fiber team will be giving away the contents of the Grimm’s Fairy Tales  Superbox, as seen in the preview video, AND s $150 Amazon Gift Certificate to a randomly drawn poster!. To enter, please list any purchases you’ve made from Exchanging Fire in this thread on Ravelry.

Celebrate Customer Appreciation Week with Exchanging Fire!

Late one night at the beginning of August I had an idea. It suddenly occurred to me that it might be nice to give back to my faithful customers in a big celebratory way. I’m close to reaching 3,000 sales, after all, and I want to reward all of the awesome people that have helped make my hobby into a job I love. So I thought, what if I held a Customer Appreciation Week, with a coupon, free gifts, and lots of love and confetti?

I may have been feeling a little brain freeze from the air conditioning and perhaps too many hours spent winding minis while sitting Indian-style on the floor, but whatever the reason, my idea turned into a full-fledged brainstorm – what if I invite the Phat Fiber members to join in with me, to have a big, blow-out spectacular? I wasn’t sure they would like the idea, but my worries were unfounded – everyone thought it was great, and so in just under a month the Phatties over on Ravelry and I have put together a huge shopping spree for all of our loyal fans.

From Sept. 1 through the 7 you can shop at most of your favorite Phat Fiber-participating shops and find deals and gifts just for you! And of course, stop by Exchanging Fire, where I’ll be giving away special gifts to new and returning customers. Use the coupon CustomerLove to receive 15% off your order this week!

Check out the official Customer Appreciation Week thread on Ravelry to find out what goodies and gifts you could get by shopping with your favorite Phatties. Most shops, including me, are participating by using the coupon code CustomerLove, but there are a few other secret codes out there so make sure you read the thread well.

Win a Free Set of Exchanging Fire Stitch Markers!

Hey everyone, the Phat Fiber people are giving away a set of my stitch markers on their blog! Click here (or on the image below) to win a free set of Exchanging Fire’s Golden Apples stitch markers from the May Phat Fiber Sampler box!

The Golden Apples – May Phat Fiber Sampler Box

It’s the weekend of the Phat Fiber Sampler box drop and I’m thrilled to unveil my mythology-themed stitchmarkers – The Golden Apples, now available at Exchanging Fire!

The Golden Apples

This story is based on the myth of Atalanta, who outran all of her suitors except for Hippomenes, who used Aphrodite’s three golden apples to distract her in their race. You’ll get a double-dose of the three golden apples, made out of gorgeous Preciosa Czech stardust pressed glass beads, Indian gold leaves and vintage findings.

Remember, if you purchased anything from me this month and you are a member of the Phat Fiber group (or you become a member…hint) then you could be eligible to win this month’s Phat Incentive, which include the contents of the May Video (aka The Superbox) AND A CHARKHA WHEEL, INSTRUCTIONAL VIDEO AND COTTON FIBER to a randomly drawn poster in this thread. This is retroactive from MAY 1st and goes until MAY 31st!

Sign up now to get entered into the giveaway!

Orphans of the Empire – April Phat Fiber Sampler

My Tea Party themed stitch markers arrived in the Phat Fiber headquarters yesterday, so I feel pretty confident about unveiling these now. Meet Orphans of the Empire, my ode to the bygone era of the British Empire when the sun never set and teatime was de rigueur.

When I was a small child I found, buried in a flower bed in my front yard, a small shard of porcelain from an English teacup. I was enchanted, convinced there was some unknown story behind this lost and forgotten piece of the past. When I saw these beads it took me right back to that time, and I knew that it was the perfect way to celebrate my own love of tea with all of you.

Remember! Any purchases you make this month in my shop, ExchangingFire.com makes you eligible to win the contents of the April Video (aka The Superbox) AND AN EXTENSIVE NATURAL DYES KIT AND 1LB OF ORGANIC MERINO! to a randomly drawn poster in the Phat Fiber group thread on Ravelry. Don’t delay because you could win big!

Check out the Phat Fiber Holiday Studio Tour!

Artichoke Bake

A bunch of us Phat Fiber ladies got together this Christmas and decided to offer our customers a holiday studio tour, just like when you visit a cluster of mom and pop shops during the holidays. We figured that while we couldn’t serve you hot wassail and a lovely nutty cheeseball when you come in out of the cold to browse in our stores, we could offer you our favorite holiday (and sometimes family secret) recipes while you click away at the computer!

I decided to offer my mother’s famous artichoke bake, which is a family favorite. At Christmastime my family has a long-standing tradition – we don’t have one big Christmas dinner, but instead serve a late luncheon of hors d’oeuvres and finger food. We’ll fill up our plates with baked brie and water crackers, shrimp cocktail, mini ham and mint chutney sandwiches, veggies, and of course, the artichoke bake. After stuffing ourselves we take a leisurely afternoon of opening gifts, one by one, all while sneaking away for my food from the buffet. My mother’s artichoke bake is a hit all-season long, and I’m always happy to share it with others!

So get yourself a nice cup of tea, settle down in from of the computer, and take a whirl through our “studios.” Enjoy perusing our shops and browsing through the fun recipes we are offering you for free. This is just our “thank you” for all of your support this season.

The full list of participating Phatties can be found here on the Phat Fiber blog. You can also browse many of them (with pictures) in this Ravelry thread – stop by and check out their delicious recipes, some of which have already been tried out! If you’re short on time and just want to look at all the pretty pictures, one of our Phat Fiber members was kind enough to turn those Phatties who have Etsy shops into a Holiday Studio Tour Treasury. Extra listings that couldn’t find into the treasury are linked in the comments below.

Happy Holidays from Exchanging Fire! Thanks to all of my blog subscribers – it warms my heart to know that you care enough to read my blog on a regular basis. May you have a wonderful winter break and head into January feeling renewed and refreshed.

Phat Fiber’s Shearlock and Sonata stop by for a visit

Hey all, Phat Fiber’s Shearlock and Sonata have been hanging out here at the Exchanging Fire headquarters and they wanted to show everyone how much fun they have been having! They arrived the same day as my brand new extra large Stanwood Needlecraft umbrella swift did, and after I installed it (over the kitchen sink, gotta love those space-saving tricks) they took a ride on it while I wound 11 balls of yarn!

My new swift is a killer.

After we wound the yarn, we went to take photos in the afternoon sunlight and visited with my cat, Mittens, who, it should be known, hates having his photo taken. Shearlock found the cat very frightening and refused to get too close. Sonata was annoyed that he kept huddling up against her and keeping her from stomping the cat. I told her that while she might be in charge of Shearlock, he was not a herd, and the cat was not a fox out to eat him so she should keep her hooves safely tucked away. She wasn’t pleased by my decree (I think she’s a little bloodthirsty!). Read more about guard alpaca here.

That face says, "I am bored with you."

The photoshoot went very well, though Shearlock was rather surprised that “behind-the-curtains” in this situation was literally behind the curtains! I told him they were sheers, not curtains. Sonata just sniffed that behind-the-curtains was much messier then she had expected. I told her that utter neatness was the sign of a disturbed mind. 😉

The pair of them did beg for one favor from me, however. They insisted on getting to hang out with this yarn that they had been hearing about, Wool-meece. After Sonata heard Shearlock pronounce it she got a little nervous. Said she wanted no part of it if there were mice involved, so it took a little convincing, but in the end they both got themselves photographed with some Wollmeise. Sonata thought it smelled heavenly, though Shearlock said it wasn’t wooly enough for his taste.

This yarn is going to be a future Mini Mania Scarf!

After dinner I typically wind yarn and make stitchmarkers, and both Shearlock and Sonata were thrilled to explore my stacks of beading supplies and piles of yarn ready to be miniskeined. Sonata loved how old frozen sushi trays have been repurposed for holding different selections of beads paired and waiting to become stitchmarkers. Shearlock just enjoyed bouncing in the piles of yarn. We watched some Jon Stewart, too.

"There is no sushi here! I am deceived!"

Mmm, Jon Stewart makes life more funny.

To be fair, it wasn’t all play for Shearlock and Sonata. They helped me on a super-secret quest to make up a set of the most perfect honey-toned miniskein colors for my Mini Mania sets. Sonata’s knowledge of color-matching was impressive (I imagine that’s from all of the great dyers she has visited) and Shearlock even helped sort the yarn! I’m very excited about those brand new Honeycomb sets. I couldn’t have done it without their help!

"Sonata, you could be helping, you know, instead of just sitting there like a lump." "I'm guarding the yarn, Shearlock!"

Shearlock and Sonata had so much fun taking photos with me that they insisted on getting their own professional portrait done as well. Shearlock especially wanted to show off his new bell that I made for him out of one of my beads. And both of them were tickled pink with the results:

Sonata and Shearlock, Partners in Yarn and Fiber

I will say that we did forget to take photos at church on Sunday – I took them so they could help out with Operation Christmas Child, but we forgot the camera in all of the excitement! They were thrilled to help dedicate the 107 boxes that we are sending all over the world this winter, though. and they were happy to have such a nice visit here at Exchanging Fire. They are winging their way back to the PhatFiberLady, whom they say that they have been missing. I think they need a cuddle.

Celebrate 1,000 Sales at Exchanging Fire!

I am so excited! I just hit 1,000 sales in my Etsy store and I’m tickled pink and want to share the love with all of my friends and fans! Technically it’s 1,000 products sold, but Etsy marks milestones by products so that’s how I’ll do it too.

It’s sorta surreal. I don’t consider myself a big Etsy seller at all (all of my finished stitch markers fit in this little drawer beside my desk) and to have that many sales blows my mind! I crunched the numbers a bit and most of my sales came through in just this past year. I think a big tip of the hat goes toward the Phat Fiber Sampler program for being so wonderful. They are a motivating force in my business life and I love them!

A big thanks goes out to my supporters, friends, fans, and even complete strangers! Enjoy this special, limited time sale as a thanks for all the great support you give me!

I bless the rains down in Africa

So I promised all of you a sneak peek of my Africa-themed stitch markers, and now that it’s August and these have been sent in, I’m thrilled to reveal them to you! If you remember, my inspiration this month was the song Africa, by the 80s hair band Toto. It’s got a catchy chorus with just one line that everyone remembers and sings overandoverandoverandover again until they’ve gone mad. Fortunately for me, I listened to this song long enough while I was making these stitch markers that I now know all of the words. And yes, I even watched the Lion King version of this song.

These African-themed markers are inspired by that single line in the song we all know – “I bless the rains down in Africa.” I thought there was something very poetic about the concept of Africa’s heat and suffering juxtaposed with the cool blessing of rain, which during the wet season washes it all away. Refreshing and beautiful, like a terrific storm occurring when a cold front meets the hot, unforgiving August weather we experience here in the Northern Hemisphere.

These stitch markers feature gorgeous vintage garnets and fire topaz Czech glass drops. I love the garnets because they look like a dusky reddish brown when they are lying in your hand but the moment you put them up to the sunlight they gleam with this inner purple light. The topaz glass beads are shaped like raindrops, and the iridescent fire polish to them creates a subtle rainbow effect in the light.

I Bless The Rains Down in Africa

I have several of these limited edition sock-sized stitch marker sets available in the shop. They are there for the month of August in conjunction with the Phat Fiber box. I thought it would be nice that if someone received a sample in their box they could then pick up a full set.