Last year at The Little Grey Girl I launched a new product: the Mystery Gems. As soon as I found the fabric and the mood board was created, I instantly knew the dyer I wanted. It could only be Kim Laudan of Golding Yarns. I had many of Kim's yarns in my stash and knew I needed a one-of-a-kind yarn for you all.
As we prepare to launch the first of the four - yes, 4 for 2018! - I thought I would get Kim to share her story, her yarns and her insight into dyeing the yarn for the inaugural TLGG Mystery Gem.
So without further ado, meet Kim Laudan of Golding Yarns!
Tell us a little about yourself
My name is Kim, and by day I am a primary school teacher, but I have an art background and love to experiment with dye colours during weekends and school holidays. I live in Norwich with my husband, our dog, Peggy Sue and two cats. Pretty soon we are going to be parents, which is really insane.
When did you start to knit/crochet?
I taught myself to crochet using youtube videos about 7 years ago I think. I’d seen loads of cool crochet blankets and challenged myself to learn. A few years later I did the same with knitting. I’d had a go when I was a kid and dabbled a bit at uni, but never actually made anything properly.
What’s your favourite item you have knitted/crocheted?
This probably changes like the wind depending on which project I’ve worked on recently. The item I use more than anything else I’ve ever made is a gigantic crochet blanket - I sit under it pretty much every night. My knitted Norwegian mittens are one of my most used items in winter and my first proper attempt at colourwork so they’re quite special. Recently, I’d say all the baby knits I have made have taken over the favourites list - there’s just something about things in miniature!What was the last thing off your needles/hook?The last thing I knitted was a baby cardigan, and I’ve got a romper on the needles nearly finished. I’m also working on a scrappy crochet pram blanket.
What’s in your notion case?
I usually have some embroidery scissors, a tin of locking stitch markers, measuring tape, a biro and highlighter for marking on my patterns. I also have a little needle tube which comes in handy.What yarns do you have in your stash?So many! I always pick up a skein or two of something when I travel somewhere. I obviously have a lot of Golding Yarns leftovers, but I have some lovely skeins of Malabrigo, Stranded Dyeworks, Brooklyn Tweed and La Bien Aimée to find projects for.
How/When did you start dying yarn?
I started dyeing yarn a couple of years ago. I’d challenged myself to learn another new skill (I had dyed lots of fabrics in the past and thought yarn would be a good next step) and started with food dye colours before investing in some professional acid dyes.
Tell us about your dyeing space/studio.
I love my studio space! After using a combination of my utility room and kitchen, we decided to put a studio shed at the bottom of the garden. It has everything I need apart from water and a sink, but it’s a cosy space with big vintage tables and pegboards to hold all of my bits and pieces. It’s full of colour, and I usually have a furry companion or two to watch me work.
What's your favourite colourway to dye?
I have always loved my Marvellous Medicine colourway, but I have also loved my club colourways, particularly the Fresh Prince inspired colours - bright and fun!
What’s your inspiration when creating colourways?
I like to use pop culture inspirations - whether that's a film, song, tv character or book. Sometimes I use a source image, but other times it’s just a general vibe of the theme.
What’s coming up for you in the next 12 months?
That’s a hard one to know at the moment! There will be a Golding Yarns baby appearing in March, which means everything is a bit uncertain, but I hope to get back to the dye pots in the summer!
Where can people find you?
I have a shop on Etsy, https://www.etsy.com/uk/shop/GoldingYarns and I’m pretty active on Instagram @goldingyarns
What was your approach to dyeing this yarn?
I loved the summery theme, I knew once I saw the mood board that I wanted to use a range of colours that were bright but soft. I used a familiar technique to blend and layer the colours.
How did you decide what you wanted to dye from the mood board?
I took an overall mental snapshot of the imagery and colours and tried to use them in a way that felt true to the Golding Yarns style, using lots of colour in a way that they blend and contrast once they’re knitted up.