Sunday, August 29, 2010

About my yarn pictures

I met with Beth yesterday. She designs both knitted and crocheted items, which you can find on her etsy shop.

It was quite interesting when I showed her my yarns that I'd brought. She had really liked the pictures of Swampwater I'd posted in my Facebook group, but she said they looked very different from what she was expecting. The photos of yarn that I'd posted in etsy didn't surprise her the same way, and that got me to thinking.

If you're a fan of Fiber Charmer on Facebook, you get to see raw, unedited photos. I take the yarns outside and photograph them on a stone bench that I've got. The cats all love that bench, so usually there are cat pictures with the yarn pictures. Lily, Grey and Hopalong (the stray) all love to get up there and see what I'm doing. I call them my quality control inspectors. I also use one of our point and shoot cameras to take those pictures.

The pictures on etsy are taken inside the house in a makeshift studio on a card table with a borrowed camera. In fact, the tan background is a padded fleece blanket that worked better than the white flannel I'd purchased especially for background fabric.

We worked pretty hard on getting the etsy photos to look like the yarns, but even all that work can't take into account monitor differences. Think about what the yarn pictures go through. The camera translates them into a digital image, which may or may not look differently once I upload it into the computer. I then edit the photos, although I didn't adjust any colors with the batch that went onto etsy last weekend. I just cropped and scaled them. The digital images then travel across glass or metal wires, or perhaps they just bounce off a satelite to end up in front of you. Your computer monitor probably shows the colors a little differently from how mine does, and we won't talk about how the colors look on your smartphone.

I do my best to portray colors faithfully, and I'll admit to buying yarn off the internet only to be really surprised when I received it. It happens. What do I do when that happens? This is me, but I toss them into my stash. Eventually, if it doesn't grow on me, I'll turn around and resell it. I've destashed both on Ravelry and ebay, but I honestly think I've only decided to sell 2 or 3 yarns that way. Interestingly enough, they were commercial yarns, although Sheri at The Loopy Ewe loves blue, and I have considered selling a couple of yarns that came in kits, but then again, I've got a husband to knit for too.

I hope this helps you when you're looking at a yarn and wondering about why it looks so differently on etsy. You're always welcome to send me a convo on etsy. I do check the shop at least twice a day.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Photography and dyeing

I've been dyeing semi-solids and solids over the past week or so while I tried a couple of other yarn bases.

They're nice, but I misread the yardage on one, and I'd like to find a worsted with more yardage.

I'm adding yarns to my etsy shop today. I borrowed a Canon Digital Rebel from a friend, and I'm much more pleased with the pictures. The colors look truer to life than any I've taken so far. Hubby took about 200 pictures for me yesterday that I have to look through. I've got to find the ones that look best and edit them before posting them to etsy. Honestly, that takes awhile. Longer than I thought. I imagine I'll be sitting here in front of the computer quite a bit today.

I also spent some quality time printing labels, then cutting them apart, and labelling yarn yesterday. I'm not finished with that! At least I can cut and label yarn with a movie going in the background, so it's not totally boring.

Look for more new yarns soon! I'm ordering some really scrumptious bases to try out. I can't believe just how soft some of them are.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Dyeing August 8 and 9, 2010

Originally uploaded by Fiber Charmer

I've uploaded pictures to my flickr this morning showing the results of the past two days.

I've also uploaded the same pictures to my Facebook page with commentary.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

The search for base yarns

Today I'm planning to go through my list and start calling wholesalers for information and hopefully some sample kits.

The Chris Sock yarn was a one time buy for me. I'm down from 4 bins to 1 bin of it, so I'll need to find some new bases. In the meantime, Webs is having their big summer sale, and I bought some worsted weight and bulky weight yarns from them. Their pricing was really great, and this way I can fill the gap, should there be one, between running out of Chris sock and placing an order for new yarn.

I'm also planning, time permitting, to start working on some more dye recipes today. However, I went to pick tomatoes from my garden this morning, and homemade tomato soup is very high on the agenda. I filled my large colander, and I still have more tomatoes to go pick. I already have some inside that need to be used ASAP also. I'm not sure I'll get around to canning. Canning takes longer than just whipping up some soup, then putting it in the freezer. We'll see how today goes.

I did add a few more yarns to etsy last week. I need to spend some quality time here with the computer and update the shop some more. I also need to catch up on labelling things. Before I know it, I'll be going with Gale to the Wisconsin Sheep and Wool Festival, leaving hubby in charge of everything. I've got to make sure it will be easy for him to keep up with it.