Artisan hand dyer Laura Bryant joins Marly to talk about her amazing career as a designer, artisan hand dyer of yarn and now author of a brand new XRX Book. Laura is a lifelong knitter and fully understands the addiction of knitting! The feel of the yarn, the click of the needles, are all so gratifying and comforting. She taught herself to crochet as well! She says she is an unorthodox knitter and while technically proficient she is not a great technical teacher because of those quirks; but there is no wrong way to knit – just different ways to knit! She specialized in the areas where she has more expertise and experience: color and design, and of course intentional patterning and stitch strategies for hand dyed yarns.
Prism specializes in high quality hand-dyed yarns; all yarns continue to be dyed by Laura. In 1986, her first published pattern was for McCall’s Knitting, and was a “Flash” tunic. She observed her hand-dyed yarns spiraling and decided to make it work for a real garment–to my knowledge, the first published intentionally patterned (or planned pooling as many call it) design ever. She proceeded to explore other ways of working with hand-dyed yarn, and came back to intentional patterning a few years ago. Laura took her 35 years of working with dyed yarn and knitting, and delved into explaining it all–from how we see color and how colors interact, to different dyeing styles and how they behave, to reading a hand-dyed skein for the type of dyeing, to finding the repeat, to harnessing that repeat to pattern, OR to employ randomizing to reduce pooling and striping. The book covers it all, and while the patterns are primarily knitting, there are several crochet projects and lots of references for successful crocheting. Color is color and the principles apply no matter what the process of combining colors is.
Artful Color Mindful Knits is a font of information specific to hand-dyed yarns but mandatory reading for all knitters who have a predilection for hand dyed yarns and want to take control of the patterning potential that is hand-dyed into yarns.
Congratulations to Kristin, the live listener winner of Artful Color Mindful Knits & 2 skeins of Saki yarn from Prism!
If you are listening to this podcast at a different time, you still have a chance to win a prize a copy of the book & yarn! Just leave a comment on these shownotes (don’t forget the keyword!)!
Leave a comment on Marly’s Facebook page as well to be entered to win a skein of the Saki yarn!
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This podcast is sponsored by: Knitter’s Magazine, Craftsy.com, Fiesta Yarns, Kollage Yarns, Decade by Drew Emborsky, Love of Knitting, Love of Crochet and Bijou Basin Ranch.
Fascinating interview! She’s had all the perfect experiences to make her a superlative hand dyer. I never knew there was a magic number for making them work like you want–I thought it was just chance. 🙂
Great interview, as usual. I’ve heard of finding the magic number for sock yarns to get an interesting pattern with patterned yarns, and it will be interesting to see Laura’s other designs.
Heather S. says
Looking forward to using the magic number. I will keep my eye out for this book.
Ann Birney says
How fascinating! I’m looking forward to learning more about magic numbers, and how to use them to pattern my projects. Thanks for the great information…
Catherine T. says
This is the first I have heard of the magic number–I love the colors of the Saki yarn on the Prism web site. The yarn and the book together would be a real treat!
Great interview with Laura – what a wealth of knowledge. I’ve never heard about the magic number before and would like to learn more about it.
moe moe says
I love the show it was very cool to hear how a few *magic numbers can change the whole look of a project .
Marley I would love to hear an interview with a machine knitter. Im learning to use my machine.
Loved listening to Laura talk about how her career has progressed. Also loved her explanation of the Magic Number which she describes in full in her new book “Artful Color Mindful Knits” of which I can’t wait to read and would love to win!
I was visiting my father in Florida last month, and he took me to a yarn store near St-Petersburg… well, HE fell in love with a beautiful skein of “Stuff” yarn, and bought it and asked me to knit a scarf for his girlfriend out of it!! Prism yarns are indeed absolutely gorgeous, and I loved learning about the creative force behind them! I look forward to learning more about the Magic Number, and I also look forward to knitting that scarf for my dad’s girlfriend!!
Loved the magic number explanation. Never knew that was possible. Very informative.
Nancy Liedel says
Laura Bryant is my new hero. I’m from a small town in Michigan, Grand Haven. I live in Ann Arbor, now, but Michigan is my home and every season is great…except mud season. You don’t know about Mud Season? Ask Laura. We have winter, mud season, more winter, mud season, spring, mud season, summer, maybe with, or without mud season, mud season, fall, mud, fall, mud, fall…you’re starting to get it. 🙂
Magic numbers are wonderful. Especially, because it has nothing to do with the lottery, etc. I’ve pre-ordered the book and March is now too far away. I have almost everything she’s every put out and I’ve purchased and downloaded all of the Interweave shows, and her videos. I cherish them and they are all backed up on extra hard drives, my server, etc, so I never lose them. Yes, you can download them again, but as Brass Needles points out, after the zombie Apocalypse…you just never know. 🙂
Laura, I am impressed with both you and your work, and just wrote Prism, whining that I cannot find enough of your yarn to make a wonderful cape in the book, “Shawls Too.” My LYS does not carry much of the higher end stuff, and OH how I wish they did. Darn Michigan recession.
Thank you, Marly for the great interview,
Laura’s book sounds fascinating. I’ve never heard of the magic number in this context before, but it sounds real fun to try.
Nancy Liedel says
I don’t think the book comes out till March, but it’s on my list for the day it hits the shelves and I have a copy pre-ordered at Amazon. I don’t normally do pre-orders, but the woman is a genius. Marly is too, but Laura is good with one thing I am not, color. I know what works together and why, but I always want more on color.
Dawn paul says
I can’t wait to hear more about magic numbers! Woohoo!
Great interview! I have never heared of the magic number before. Excited to see the book.
Vicki Lynch says
I loved the interview. It’s so interesting finding out how people get in the business. I’ve heard of the magic number in sequences for Fibonacci’s number, but not in reference to figuring out a dye pattern. Very cool!
Julie Marie Wages says
I have never heard of Magic Numbers before nor have I heard of pooling until I saw a post on my facebook page. Sounds and looks very interesting and I absolutely love to work with verigated yarns. They break up the monotiny of knitting or crocheting with one color.
marimariknit on ravelry says
Very interesting podcast. The magic number was different then I thought. Have some old Cast On magazines with great articles by Laura. Can’t wait to get the book.
Krystyna Bolin says
After listening to Laura explaining magic numbers it makes soo easy to understand dyied yarn and how it works together, Great info & can’t wait to try it soon.
Julie Hwang says
Who knew that there was a science behind achieving exactly the look you want out of knitting hand dyed yarn? Time and again, I’ve bought hand dyed yarn that looked beautiful on the skein, only to be disappointed by what the knitted fabric ended up looking like. I look forward to learning all about magic numbers from Laura’s new book!
What a fascinating approach to working with color. I’d love to learn how to use a yarn’s magic number
Keyword: Magic number! The book sounds fascinating and the yarn colorful. I’d love to learn more.
Patty Nance says
Great explanation of the magic number. Can’t wait to read Laura’s book.
Great podcast as usual! I hope to have the magic number!