There was a lot of excitement on the farm today since we let Zip out of his crate. And this evening, instead of going to my Bellydancing Class we’re having our annual potluck dinner. For the past six years, I brought fruit to every dinner and Hafla.
But this year I made borscht.
I just got done putting the beets, onions, and broth that have been simmering all day in the blender. I’ll top it with sour cream.
In between I sold another of Suzy’s Shawls. This time to a regular blog reader who asked me to let her know when Suzy had a blue shawl.
Suzy sent me a picture of her blue and soft rose Shawl. Judy loved it. I’ll have another of Suzy’s shawls for sale tomorrow.
I also finished piecing together my Raven Quilt.
It’s another busy day tomorrow. I’ll be picking up some fabric for both me and Sue Silverstein’s sewing class from a friend and supporter of the Army of Good. But with Zip quickly acclimating to the farm, I think I should have a good chunk of time in my studio to work on the backing of my Raven quilt.
Oh it’s the same colors as your Zinnia’s I texted Suzy, we’ll have to call it Zinnia or Zinnia Garden.
Suzy sent me the photo of her shawl in her Zinnia garden after telling me she made seven shawls this year. Surprisingly she made this one in February. Not surprisingly around Valentine’s days.
But with that touch of orange, it says Zinnia Garden to me more than hearts.
Suzy’s been making and selling her Shawls for years. First, we sold them at the Bedlam Farm Open Houses, then every fall on my blog.
It’s become a tradition that I so look forward to.
As many of you know, Suzy hand spins all her yarn, much of it is mohair that comes from her angora goats. The rest comes from her favorite fiber artists. Sometimes she even uses wool from my sheep. Last year one of Suzy’s shawls had Issachars wool in it.
Then Suzy hand knits the yarn into unique, beautiful, and functional works of art.
She has two just about done and two more in the works. As many of you know Suzy started selling her Shawls at our Bedlam Farm Open Houses. When we stopped having the Open Houses, I continued selling them on my blog every fall.
Suzy (who one of my oldest sheep is named after) hand spins all the wool she uses in her hand-knit shawls. Some of it comes from her own Mohair goats. And some of the wool she gets from her favorite fiber artists.
That ball of yellow wool (with the ears popping up behind it. I have to ask Suzy which of her animals they belong to) comes from my sheep.
We did a trade back in 2020. She knit a scarf for Jon’s daughter Emma and I gave her some of Liam’s raw wool and a bump of yellow roving made from Liam and Rosemary’s wool.
Suzy hand spun the yellow roving and used it in a couple of her shawls. Now she has a little bit left and plans to use it along with the wool (in all those rich fall colors) it’s on top of in the picture above.
Every year when I sell Suzy’s shawls I post pictures and videos of her goats.
Some of you may remember seeing pictures of Larry her angora goat. I was sorry to hear that Larry died this fall. He was old and Suzy was worried about him having to deal with the coming winter. He died naturally one night in the barn before the cold weather came. Suzy said the other goats were sitting outside the barn when she found him as if they were holding vigil.
I wish such a death for my older sheep when it’s their time.
So far Suzy has one shawl in fall colors and two others in blues and neutral colors. It will probably be another week or so before they are ready to be put up for sale. As soon as they are, you’ll see them here.
As I wrote yesterday Suzy is working on some new shawls. She sent me these photos of the wool combinations she’s planning on using. You can see the blue and purple or Tanzanite locks in the lower right corner. And she’s already spun two of the purples, one mixed with white, but she still has to spin the green roving.
I’m already thinking African violets and lilacs.
In the bottom photo, you can see Suzy’s next shawl on her knitting needles in process. The handspun yarn has so much character and adds a texture you can’t get with machine-spun yarn. Notice the light blue locks. They look like they’re spun into the white wool. I’ll have to ask Suzy if that’s correct or if she knits them in.
Now I’m trying to imagine what each of these shawls will look like.
When Suzy was telling me about the latest shawl she was making, she said it was natural gray and white with a strip of mustard or maybe pink for Valentine’s Day.
She still hadn’t decided.
Gray and pink are lovely together, but in my mind, I could only picture the mustard, like a bit of sunshine on a winter day. Ultimately, that’s what she chose to do.
With Suzy’s blessing, I named her shawl Winter Sunshine. It’s 65″x 20.5 ” and is $150 + $8 shipping. You can buy it here in my Etsy Shop. Or you can email me at [email protected]. I take checks, Paypal and Venmo.
I’ve lost count of how many of Suzy’s Shawls and Scarves we sold this winter.
Usually, she takes a break after Christmas, that slow, going-inward time of year, and starts spinning and knitting again in the spring. But this year, since her shawls are so popular and so many of us are spending a lot more time at home I asked her if she was interested in making more.
“People will want shawls in February too, “I texted her. I was thinking of myself sitting by the woodstove reading as the wind and snow howled outside the window.
And then there’s Valentine’s Day.
Just today I got a Valentine from Jon in the mail. It’s an adopted Madagascar Hissing Cockroach from the Bronx Zoo named Full Moon Fiber. Jon got me one last year too, but this year I also got a stuffed roach, a candle and a Zoom meeting with my Roach next Sunday at 12 noon.
But not everyone wants a Roach for Valentine’s day.
A handspun, handknit, mohair Shawl lovingly made by Suzy, is a wonderful gift. It’s soft and warm, a unique and beautiful piece of functional art.
And there are two of Suzy’s shawls Winter Sunshine and Winter Fields to choose from in my Etsy Shop.
Winter Fields, is the colors of winter before the snow. The Chartreuse, a bit more optimistic than winter grass. A little light in the dark days. It’s 64″ x 19″. You can buy it here. Or email me at [email protected]. I take checks, PayPal, and Venmo.
And as most of you already know, much of Suzy’s wool comes right from her own mohair goats, Ruth, Alice, Anne, Lucy, and Larry. Each one is unique in its colors and patterns. And if they weren’t already soft enough, she washes them in a natural softening solution.
As often happens, Suzy’s shawls sell quickly. The one I posted yesterday will be on its way to California tomorrow.
But I do have more of Suzy’s Shawls for sale.
The Gentle Pink shawl above is made with natural white and gray with the soft pink is filled with gentle hues and depth. It’s 49″ long and 15″ wide at the center point. It’s $150 + $8 shipping. You can buy it here.
Suzy’s wool comes from her mohair goats Lucy, Ruth, April, Alice, and Larry. She also gets some roving from fiber artists including some wool from my sheep.
First Suzy’s shears her goats. Then she either leaves the wool natural or chooses colors to dye it. After that she hand spins the wool and finally, she knits it into her very unique Shawls and Scarves.
No two of Suzy’s Shawls are exactly alike. She combines colors and patterns so each of her creations has its own look and feeling.
And they are all washed in a natural solution which makes them extra soft.
I tossed the hay into the feeder and suddenly the sun was shining again. Already low in the sky, it lit up the top of the trees behind the farm. The gloomy day was suddenly aglow with color and I thought of Suzy’s Shawl Autumn Light.
It has all the same colors, and the same glow.
It’s autumn, so it’s time for me to sell Suzy Fatzinger’s shawls that she has been working on all year. Right now I have two for sale Autumn Light and October Earth.
Not only are they unique in color and pattern, but Suzy hand spins all the wool and hand knits the shawls.
The wool is a mix of fiber that she spins together. Some of it is mohair which comes from her angora goats April, Alice, Ruth and Lucy. She adds a wool mix of Alpaca and Llama roving which come from fiber artists that she has known for years and who create hand-carded roving.
Soft and warm, mohair is one of, if not the oldest, fiber still in use. Angora goats are believed to have originated in Tibet.
Suzy washes each shawl in a natural solution that makes them extra soft.
Autumn Light is 19″ x 60″ and is Sold $150 + $10 shipping. You can buy it in my Etsy Shop, just click here or you can email me at [email protected]. I take checks, PayPal and Venmo.
“That’s your yellow roving“, Suzy texted me when she sent the picture of her second shawl. I recognized it right away. It was from my batch of wool in 2020. But I was just as drawn to the mix of colors on the other side of the shawl.
“Yummy” I wrote back to Suzy about those earthy colors. It’s the color of fallen leaves on the forest floor and the corn drying in the field or already cut. All with a hint of Autumn blue sky.
As you can see in this close up, texture is an important part of Suzy’s shawls. Tight knits combined with loose lacy patterns. A decorative edge one one side, and simple edge on the other.
It was only a week ago that I put up six of Suzy’s Scarves and four of her Shawls for sale. As of this morning, they are all sold.
But Suzy isn’t done yet, I don’t believe she will ever be done spinning and knitting.
She sent me the picture above of roving that she’s considering combining for a new shawl. The brown roving on top is from my sheep Asher. I’m really curious to know how Asher’s wool spins and knits. And I can’t wait to see what Suzy does with it.
When she has another shawl for sale, I’ll let you know.
Suzy’s Shawls sold quickly yesterday, but she’s been busy all year and I have two more of her shawls for sale in my Etsy Shop.
I want to share with you the comments that two people who bought Suzy’s shawls last year left on my facebook page:
“Simply gorgeous. I have two from prior Open Houses. They are truly scrumptious. I loved seeing Suzy spinning and those sweet goats. That natural color wool shawl is so intriguing with the curly locks and the vivid colors of the other is just beautifully complex and equally wonderful.” Susan
“I totally agree with Susan’s assessment. I purchased two of Suzy’s shawls (one as a gift and one for myself) and they are beyond beautiful: gorgeous color and workmanship and the curls of sheep locks are endearing. Totally in awe of her work!” Donna
As you can see each of Suzy’s shawls is unique. Each it’s own combination of colors, wool, and patterns. These two shawls are made from the same mix of mohair from Suzy’s goats, Lucy, Alice, April, Ruth, and Larry. Along with wool from other fiber artists.
Suzy’s Yellow and Gray Shawl has both natural and dyed wool in it. Look how those yellow curly locks show up on the natural gray wool.
Yellow and Gray Shawl is 60″ long and 17″ from top center to bottom point. It’s $138 including shipping and you can buy it here.
I love the way the ends of Suzy’s Purple Shawl spiral in a corkscrew and how the pink locks float on the purple ground like a sky of wispy clouds.
Suzy’s Purple Shawl is 61″ long and 20″ from the top center to the bottom point. It’s $138 with shipping and you can buy it here.