A Cup Of Yarn

It is always difficult for me to write a biography. I never really know what to share and what not to share about my, well, adventurous life, so in this case, I will just pick out the part of my journey with yarn.

I used to be a full-time painter for about 15 years. I never wanted to touch anything crafty, but because of circumstances and the fact that the business side of art was starting to mess with my creativity and general sanity, I ended up ditching the art world for the craft world.

I started out crocheting (I thought if my granny could do it, I could to and You Tube is an awesome teacher). I bought my first yarn at a yarn shop in Robertson and started watching tutorials. I soon became a bit suspicious when I realized how many imported brands we have in commercial yarn shops and started getting a bit uptight about the local yarn industry and the impact the cheap imports were having. I decided to stick to buying mainly local yarns instead of imports as far as possible. After a while, my husband started complaining about all the unused yarn lying around , which made me decide to start selling them. About two years in, I started hand dyeing animal fibres and fell in love with the creative process.

This is where my quest started to provide high quality, local but affordable yarns to the part of the public that navigated towards Chinese imports, because that is all they could afford. I also became more and more aware of the environmental/ health risks being caused by synthetic fibres, which is why I decided to keep my products as natural as possible.

I have recently started a cotton series for which I am grateful to say I have gotten some help. Rose has been a great addition to A Cup of Yarn and has become the dyer behind the cotton series. She is also proof that the old crafts are not only meant for old people.

I live in a rural area in the Western Cape, so my mission will continue to be creating awareness of the value of natural fibres and local yarns, as well as getting people excited to spin, knit, crochet or start doing any of the other fibre crafts and passing the knowledge on to the next generation. I am excited to watch the local yarn industry grow and reach it’s full potential.

Elmarie