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Deb, oh my goodness.. I thought your name was familiar to me!
A few years ago (2008-2011), I was very active on Rav and had started an Etsy shop where I sold hand carded spinning fiber. I am still a member of PhatFiber though I have not contributed in years. The economics didn’t work out for me and my body would not take the strain even with a motorized carder. My back went out (I am now 68 and I have had fibromyalgia since 1980 anyway…) I just sold my carder last month after 3 years of none use. It was shame to let it go but I still have two blending boards that I also don’t even have the strength to lift…
I am now in the process of destashing two storage lockers and one closet full of fiber.. I can’t believe how much I spent and how much I have… I actually installed Woo Commerce on my web site just so I could sell the fiber without all the frantic “is it available” Rav messages… Unfortunately, I still have to list it in destash on Rav because the mods get upset if I put a link to my site in the Spinners Marketplace site. But I sort of have it to a system now.
I started out back in the 1970s doing needlepoint and mixed media embroidery with the Embroidery Guild of the America. I learned to spin from them as well (and bought my first Ashford unpainted in 1978. But back in those years, I had no way to buy spinning fiber. when the fibro hit, I gave up both the loom and my spinning wheel–as well as the ability to work on large canvases. I did not start spinning again until 2008 when we moved into our current home. I now have a Hanson minispinner that I love. I have no stamina to treadle. I did buy the Aura when it first came out and didn’t like it so I will stick with Hansen.
I also bead and knit. However, since none of this will add the extra income that I need in order to supplement my fiber, bead, and tech habits, I decided to concentrate on the Photoshop instruction that I have been doing since 1999. But I want to control my own destiny. I am tired of letting others set prices or content for me and I want to do it all myself. I also am trying (though not very hard yet) to sell my surface design patterns for textiles or for product licensing. That is an entirely different world from the fiber space that I am used to occupying (grin).
I can spin merino, polworth, and some falkland but even BFL is too coarse for me–and the flying fibers hit my allergies… I am such a mess with this. I guess my fav spin is really your despised merino mixed with silk. I do love to learn about the rare breeds but I can’t prep fiber and most fibers are simply too coarse for me to spin easily. I would love to try spinning pure silk at some point rather than silk mixed with wool, but I just away an entire cabinet of silk and I have six more pounds of it marked for sale. My husband is totally fed up having to house all of my fiber when I don’t even have time to spin much…
So, if I can manage to get a more steady passive income from teaching, I want to have the time to spin and bead again!
It is really great to meet you! I am prancingpixel on ravelry.