Hello yarn and fiber folk! I have something truly special for you today: the brilliant and creative mind behind Bad Sheep Yarn, Marcie Bourne! I’m guessing you’d recognize her from her gorgeous yarn collections, such as the 2020 Alaska collection . . . but you might also have cast on a lovely Eirlys Shawl in her Nebula and Constellation colorways. I found Marcie through Facebook–some friends of mine were posting all about her pretty yarn and I had to check it out. Turns out Marcie makes her yarn magic the way up in the North Pole and has quite a few ideas for colors that just belong together. I am partial to her Deep Woods Collection and, if I had any birthday money left, well . . . So, naturally, I struck up an email exchange with Marcie and we had some fun talking about all things yarn and indie dyer. I hope you enjoy the interview below and tune into the next podcast (Episode 83) for an amazing GIVEAWAY–yes, it’s HUGE!–from Marcie and Bad Sheep Yarn 🙂
KTS: You are the creative mind behind Bad Sheep Yarn; can you tell us a little bit about how you started the business and what you love about dyeing yarn?
Marcie: I started working for someone else dying yarn. They trained me and I loved working for them. When they moved out of state my husband and I decided to start our own business together (He does all the IT things that I know nothing about). It’s been quite a journey from there.
What I love most about dying yarn is the excitement of making new things, new color combinations. I could say a lot about having an appreciation for every color from chartreuse to hot pink to brown. Every color has something great to offer.
KTS: You’ve featured two Alaska collections and a Deep Woods collection (which I LOVE!) along with other themed yarn bundles. How do you decide on the colorways? Are you looking for complementary colors, a variation on a theme, or something that stirs your imagination?
Marcie: A little of everything, haha! Sometimes I start with a theme that I can let my imagination follow and other times I start with a color palette that I’m inspired by. After those I just work one at until I have something that fits what I was going for in the first place. I also try to make things that can be worked all together and look cohesive but also contrast enough to showcase each colorway.
KTS: Who are your biggest crafting influences/inspirations?
Marcie: This could be a long list. My dad is an amazing wildlife artist. My mom taught us how to sew and craft. She also taught me how to figure things out for myself.
I think anyone that follows me could see that nature inspires me. I live in a place where it’s just so stunning. I’m always in awe.
- My best lady, Chandi, from Expression Fiber Arts.
- My girl, Tara, from Mamachee crochet patterns.
- And Amy Sedaris. She makes crafting and entertaining hilarious and I love her for that.
KTS: What’s it like living in the North Pole, literally (!)
Marcie: Cold. It’s pretty cold here in the winters. The street lamps are painted to look like candy canes. But other than the cold, long, dark winters Alaska is beautiful. Sweater weather comes early so it’s always knitting season. It’s a small town and it’s my home. Also there is a man here who has legally changed his name to Kris Kringle and he is our year round Santa. His wife knits and they are sweet.
KTS: Any advice for new dyers?
Marcie: WRITE DOWN ALL THE RECIPES. Don’t be afraid of slow beginnings or a saturated market. Have fun. Don’t look around at what other people are doing and feel defeated. Look around and be inspired and to learn. There are so many generous dyers who share their wisdom so watch and learn and try new things!
KTS:Where can folks find your shop? or find out more about you?
Marcie: My website badsheepyarn.com is my main platform. I’m also on Facebook and Instagram under the user name BadSheepYarn . I think I’m on pinterest too but I forget about it. I want to start a whole pinterest board about good knit night snacks/drinks because I’m all about that.
KTS: What’s new on the horizon for your business?
Marcie: So many things! I’ve been working on the next Alaska Collection for 2021. Those are huge collections for us and I put a lot of thought them. My husband and I have a lot of dreams that we’ve talked over for our 5 – 10 year plans. Nothing is set in stone, but we’ve enjoyed dreaming things up so much that everything seems possible.
Thanks so much, Marcie, for sharing your yarn and giving us a peek into your business!
I love meeting new people (and sheep!): if you are an indie dyer, a hand spinner, a shepherdess, a small flock owner, a mill operator, or a wool trader, I would love to feature your work on this site. Please get in touch via email (email@example.com) or Ravelry by clicking the “About” tab (above)
Happy knitting! 🙂