Monday, May 24, 2010

Handmade Shop of the Week: ColourSpun

Dana Biddle, of ColourSpun - Natural Designer Yarn, has only recently opened her online shop filled with yarn, tools, and accessories. She is a South African knitter, whose soon to be published book From Fibre to Fabulous features some of her own handmade yarn creations.

Why did you decide to open your handmade shop?
I have been dying my own yarn for a number of years now. I started out very small, dying just what I needed for my own projects. Then friends started requesting hand dyed yarn and I was dying more and more, but still only on a small scale. As I continued, I came into contact with other people who are artisan yarn makers and decided to write a book about them and knitting their yarns. It is due for publication early next year and is titled
From Fibre to Fabulous.... a South African Knitting Adventure. Since the book will also include my yarn, I had to make it available to everyone - so ColourSpun came into being.

What items do you plan on filling your shop with?
ColourSpun will be stocked with natural yarns - Brushed Mohair, Merino DK Wool, Merino Hand Spun Wool,100% Cotton and Novelty Hand Spun Art Yarns. All the yarns are grown locally (in 
South Africa) and coloured with earth friendly dyes that are light and wash fast. Merino roving will also be available and so will the dye powders.

Handmade wooden tools and other accessories will be listed and later on I hope to add a section for finished goods made with fibre. 

The shop is filling up slowly. It's quite a process as I have 2 colour ranges - Rainbow and Earth, each with 15 colours in light, medium and dark. Add to that my Oddballs range which consists of other colours, experimental dyeing etc... and the Unique range of hand painted yarn/roving.

Have you sold your work anywhere before, like craft fairs or consignment?
I have a regular table at a local Quilters Guild meeting (they knit too) which takes place 4 times a year and also at a few annual craft fairs.

What inspires you to create?
I find my inspiration all over the show. I love colour and am drawn to anything colourful be it in nature, in books, on TV .... I am also very fortunate to have a large circle of very creative friends and we inspire each other. The smallest spark of an idea can grow into something meaningful very quickly with so many brains to storm with :)
What is your favorite item in your shop currently? Your most popular item?
My favourite item in my shop at the moment is a Merino roving which I have labelled - "Unique 1" 

The most popular item is the 100% Cotton Yarn in pink shades

How are you promoting your work on and offline?
I have an advert in Stitches n Bears - a South African needle crafts magazine. I talk a lot about my yarn on which is a social network for crafters, also in the Ravelry groups I belong to and I have recently started to blog -  I have joined twitter and aim to join Facebook soon too.

Why should we choose your work? What makes you different?
My yarns are natural and coloured with earth friendly dyes. Only the best quality mohair, merino and cotton is used to ensure that the yarn is always soft and comfortable to wear. All the yarn is sourced locally and I follow fair trade practice. The wood for the tools is also from local, sustainable sources and they are made by my Dad.  I personally dye each skein of yarn using processes that are as "green" as possible - using the sun as much as possible and a dyeing method that uses the minimum of water. Because it is created by hand, each skein of yarn (although it may be similar to others) will have its own unique characteristics. 

How else can we find you online? Any team affiliations?

ColourSpun would love to give you 2 skeins of her fabulous yarn

here's how to enter: 
one entry for each action, giveaway ends May 31st, 2010
1) visit 
ColourSpun and comment here on your favorite item in her shop
2) follow her on
twitter and be sure to tweet about this giveaway
3) follow her

4) write a blog article about Colourspun and her giveaway
5) make a purchase in her


15% discount on any order if is mentioned when ordering - valid till the 31st May 2010.

Interested in being featured? Email me for information


  1. Awesome yarns, it's nice to meet a great spinner.

  2. i like the Cotton DK Rainbow 04 Dark. it is nice to see bright colors in cotton!

    sadiekate2001 at

  3. I like the Cotton DK multicolor - :D

  4. And, I'm now a follower on twitter and her blog! Love handspun yarn!

  5. Love the Hand Dyed Pure Cotton DK - Multicolour
    and the hand crafted crochet hooks are very nice.
    Oh to be so talented!

  6. My fave has to be #22. Cotton DK Rainbow 08 Light
    I love that colour!

  7. and I'm now a follower of as well!

  8. I liked #28. Pure Merino Wool Hand Spun Rainbow 10 Light. I'm in a purple loving phase right now.

  9. AFter a good look areound, I chose the Pure Merino Wool Roving Unique 4 as my favorite. Thanks for the interview and giveaway. It's always nice to "meet" the artists.

  10. I love how there are so many colour choices. My favourite today is the 33. Pure Merino Wool DK Rainbow 11 Dark.

  11. LOVE LOVE LOVE the 20. Cotton DK Rainbow 07 Medium Model: R07M_DK_COT! The purple color is gorgeous!
    one 4 earth at aol dot com

  12. Beginning knitter here! So excited about this giveaway. At her shop, I really like the Pure Merino Hand spun Wool Natural
    nynekats at aol dot com

  13. my favorite is the Merino DK....such gorgous colors she has.