Happy weekend everyone! I’m so excited to feature Susan Gomes of WitchCandy this weekend. I have been smitten with Susan’s work for a LONG time–especially her “Birch Fire,” “Utah Mesa,” and “Sunset Hair,” which are super hard to get a hold of. There is a certain whimsy and vibrancy to Susan’s color combinations. I know I fell in love when I saw her knee socks knit with a beautiful gradient yarn. Plus, Susan is well regarded in the indie community and folks in many of my FB groups snap up her yarn as fast as she can make it. So, first things first: some eye candy from WitchCandy 🙂 and then, the interview!
How did you get into dyeing?
When my kids were little I was really into knitting things for them. There was an indie dyer who’s yarn I couldn’t get enough of—Lindsay Baker of Family Roots Legacy—who dyed in vibrant colors I wasn’t seeing at any of my local yarn shops. Lindsay took time off from dyeing and, lucky for me, put out an e-book that was perfect for beginners and also included a few of her “recipes.” My boyfriend purchased her ebook for me for Christmas one year and that set me on this path.
What is your favorite fiber to dye?
I would say anything with some silk content. Colors blend so beautifully on silk bases and light just seems to dance right off of it’s sheen.
Where do you find inspiration?
EVERYWHERE! nature of course, art, music, food, photographs, thoughts in my head, even my kids’ messy rooms! it is really true that inspiration is everywhere if you are paying attention and open to seeing it.
Any advice for new dyers?
Yes, try everything! don’t be afraid to screw up, it’s just yarn (yes, I said that!). Don’t always follow the rules of color theory–sometimes mixing “taboo” colors creates the most beautiful results. just play with color and you will build a filing cabinet in your head of colors that work together so that when you see inspiration, you can translate it to yarn. try lots of different techniques; kettle dye, pan dye, squirt on dye, paint it on, sprinkle it on dry, etc. There are so many different ways to apply dye and they all create very different results. Experimenting with various techniques will help you develop a style that works for you.
What’s NEW on the horizon for your shop?
I am starting to dye yarn sets which is new for me. I have also been turning over the idea of building a studio so that I can dye in larger batches, I just have to decide if I want to make that leap.
Thanks so much, Susan!
I love farm visits and meeting new people (and sheep!): if you are a hand spinner, a shepherdess, a small flock owner, a dyer, a mill operator, or a wool trader, I would love to feature your work on this site. Please get in touch via email or Ravelry by clicking the “About” tab (above)