It has been a more relaxing pre-holiday season than I can remember for years. I hope you are enjoying the season for fun times with family and friends.
Lots of good things to report here, with more good news on the way next month.
- THE BOOK Status Report
- Last Minute Shopping for Special Loved Ones
- Developing NEW Byrdcall Studio Website
- Bad News Leads to Good News
- 174 Rya Rug Friends Group ~ why not you?
- A Lesson in Rya Design by a Beginner
- Seeking Testimonials
- Mentors Available and Needed
- Frequently Asked Questions and ...
- Wishes for a Peaceful and Beautiful Winter
Good news still shines. The last editor is working on her review and testing the technical aspects of the book. The indexer will be next. And I recognize it is the holiday season, so I won't pressure them at all.
The logistics are all in place. We are ready to go. Last week, Ken Koons, the book designer, and I went to the printer in Odenton, Maryland to meet the staff and see the operations. We were extremely impressed.
Once we hand the digital book to them, it will be printed and ready for the 500 copies to be picked up 15 days later. Possibly as early as the end of January or early February. No point rushing anything after 8-9 years. No one is more anxious to have the book completed than me! (Oh, yes--and YOU!)
For Last Minute Shoppers
In case I can help you with stocking stuffers like T-shirts or significant most marvelous heirloom gifts like rya rug kits, I want to direct you to my Etsy shop.
All Etsy orders come directly from me, and at this moment, I am caught up and ready to serve. Here are the 27 rya kits I have on hand and ready-to-ship within 24 hours--or you can stop by to pick up if you are local to Woodbine, MD.
16" x 16"
Available in your choice of 6 different color combinations
$135 for 2-strand Natural Grays
$150 for 3-strand Other Colors
Circles and Squares
16" wide x 29.5" long
Available in Pinks/Purples or Blues and Turquoise
32" x 32"
Available in a choice of two color combinations
Kit from Rauma Norway
31" x 47"
And for those of you wishing you had the book for a holiday gift, the next best thing in preparation for designing your own rya rug is the extensive sample package. That would be a great gift, too!
Click image below to learn more about the
and to order.
New Website is
Making Great Progress
I am almost as excited about my new website development as I am about the book being printed. I've put the task in the hands of a local professional who is making it a very secure, functional, and beautiful website to visit when you need supplies, up-coming events, or inspiration. (Here's a shout-out to Randy at Bizmarquee.com
I've been a trusting person most my life. I have a big mailbox in front of my house from which I sent the Etsy shop sales, T-shirts, and yarn orders. I never had a problem until about one month ago. I saw a car pull up to my mailbox and I watched thinking they were attaching a note about a lost dog. I headed right out the door only to find that the occupants of the vehicle had stolen two of my outgoing mail packages!
To make a long story short, and to get to the "Good News" . . . One package of 4 skeins of sky blue Prydvevgarn (yarn from Rauma in Norway) was stolen. My distributors had no more, and in fact, Norway had no more--it was backordered. My customer-friend, Ulrika Leander, is a weaver and quite eager to complete her tapestry. We were truly in a pickle.
"Shallow Waters" in progress by Ulrika Leander of Contemporary Tapestry Weaving
in Royal Oak, Maryland.
Then out of the blue, in my spam folder, I found an email from Annita Magee who runs a yarn shop in Anchorage, AK called Cranberry Hill Yarns & Weaving. She sold the Rauma yarns for over 35 years and was phasing out some of her offerings. She wanted to know if she could refer her rya customers to me for the Rauma ryegarn. I responded that of course she could (Thank you very much) and I asked if she happened to have any sky blue Prydvevgarn. Well, guess what? She did. She sent three skeins to Ulrika and in return, I sent her three skeins of a color she needed--an equal trade. Now Ulrika is happily weaving her tapestry.
If you want to see more of Ulrika's tapestries, go to her website: Contemporary Tapestry Weaving. She is selling one of her looms if you are interested. It is a 12-foot tapestry loom. Ask her about it.
You are Invited to Join our
Stay in-the-know all month long! I am loving this addition to our Rya Rug Revival. There is a lot of brilliance in this group...keep sharing. I'll throw in my 2-cents on occasion. ;-) We have 174 members now!
If you are intrigued by rya rugs, the only good reason NOT to join is if you are not a Facebook person.
If you are a member of Facebook (even if you never use Facebook) you can request to join this Group. If you subscribe to my newsletter, you definitely should check this out.
Click JOIN GROUP and you will be asked about your rya interest (to filter out spammers or those without any interest). You can answer in any way you want. Then you can comment and share with each other.
Even if you just click on "like" when you see rya rugs that you like...that will make someone smile.
To join, just
Consider this a
personal invitation! No product promotions, please.
A Designer's Story
If you have given even a remote thought to designing your own rya, this story will show you one woman's path to creating an amazing design--step by step. Read how Elizabeth Terzakis designed this rya for her father to knot. Click here to read the illustrated blogpost.
It is a little embarrassing to say, "Hey, got any praises you can sing for me?" But in truth, I am looking for your kind, but earned, words of recommendation that I can use to share in my developing website.
Frequently Asked Questions...
Q: What is the best way to reach me?
A: Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. If you have a question too complicated to type as an email, then call me at
410-549-4889 and leave a message. If I don't answer, I will call you back as soon as possible. Please do not google-message me or facebook-message me because it's hard for me to keep track of all those messages systems. (I have completed disconnected from the AOL email address I had so make sure you don't have that one recorded anywhere.)
Q: Where am I located and what are my hours?
A: I work out of my studio located in my backyard in Woodbine, MD. I do not have regular business hours, but I am more than happy to make appointments at the studio with anyone interested in what I have to offer. Give me a call at 410-549-4889 and please leave me a message.
Q: So how did I get into this whole rya rug thing?
This is such a frequently asked question, I'm leaving this link here because it is nicely put into a nutshell. Credit to Lyndi McNulty and
The Carroll County Times.
Finding My Work
My Etsy Shop
has just about everything for online buying. When you buy through etsy, you allow me more free time to work on the book since written and verbal correspondence is minimal...Not that I don't love communicating with you, but that is my #1 time-consumer in the day.
Other Ways to Keep Up-to-Date:
And as always, feel free to share this newsletter with anyone you think might enjoy it.
Find a Mentor, or Be One!
22 Mentors in USA, Canada, Mexico, and Europe
I get so excited to add a new red mentor tag to the map. Our newest volunteer is Larry Jones from north central Utah. Thanks for stepping up. Eventually you will see a
tag in your neighborhood--or at least in your state. Anybody else want a red tag? Everyone else has a white tag.
This is to assist someone who feels stuck in their rya work. Maybe they forgot how to make the knot. It happens. Rya help could be in the next town...or maybe the next state. I'm keeping track of everyone who is willing to assist a beginner get started with a kit or a design. I gladly share the mentor's contact info with the person who needs help (but I do not post their phone numbers or addresses to ensure their internet privacy).
Thanks to those of you who have offered to be of assistance if there is a neighbor in need:
- Larry in Hyde Park, UT
- Gail in Black Mountain, North Carolina
- Holly in Indianapolis, Indiana
- Jackie in Williamsport, Pennsylvania
- Kristin in Deland, Florida
- Tina in San José, California
- Kris in Paynesville, Minnesota
- John in Woodcliff Lake, New Jersey
- Janet in Monmouth County, New Jersey
- Inger in Santa Fe, New Mexico
- Marsha in Sun City, Arizona
- Madeline, south of Tucson
- Paul in Tucson, Arizona
- Denise in Snohomish, Washington
- Robbin--Vancouver/Savory Is., British Columbia
- David in Cincinnati, Ohio
- Eleanor in Fleischmanns, New York
- Laurie in Chatham and Boston, Massachusetts
- Angie is near Mexico City
- Polly in Oakville, Ontario, Canada
- Mia in Stockholm, Sweden
- Marie in Scunthorpe/North England
- and Marian in The Netherlands
You need NOT be an expert. All you have to do to change from a little white tag to a bright pink tag is be willing to help someone in your area get started. I will contact you to make the connection...and no mentor to date has had more than one contact, so you are not going to be swamped! Email me today.
I am only one person in Maryland. But you all are all over the country and the world. I'd love to share my joy of getting people started on their first ryas with YOU if you are interested. Just let me know. If you want to be connected to a mentor, just ask me. email@example.com
Thank you for the kindness you share with me throughout the year. You have seen me through 8 (maybe 9) years of writing
been one of the biggest challenges of my life as well as having led me to the most wonderful people I could ever hope to meet. Most I have never met in person, but I feel a kinship to you. Thank you.
Happy New Year,
Byrdcall Studio, LLC