Sunday, May 13, 2012

Ordering and Pricing Info for the Balticon 2012 yarns

As in past years, I will be offering discounts for buying more than one colorway...the more you buy, the more you save.

Because these are Limited Editions and in very small quantities there is a limit to one (1) of each colorway for the first week that these are on sale.  After than, if you would like to order more of a particular colorway (and it hasn't sold out already), you are absolutely welcome to do so.  Prices for additional skeins will be $22 each.

These colorways will go on sale Monday, May 14, 2012, at 5:00 pm Eastern.

To order, send an email to DyedBrightHere (at) gmail (dot) com.  

I will then send you an invoice through PayPal.  This invoice is your order confirmation.  If a colorway that you want has already been sold out, I will instead reply directly to your email to see how you would like to proceed at that point.

Orders are first come, first served according to the time stamp of your email.

Prices are:

$24 for 1 colorway
$46 for 2 colorways 
($23 ea and a savings of $2 or 4%)
$66 for 3 colorways 
($22 ea and a savings of $6 or 8%)
$84 for 4 colorways 
($21 ea and a savings of $12 or 12.5%)
$100 for 5 colorways 
($20 ea and a savings of $20 or 17%)
$114 for 6 colorways 
($19 ea and a savings of $30 or 21%)
$126 for the complete set of Balticon 2012 colorways
($18 ea and a savings of $42 or 25%)

If you would like to receive your yarn as a center-pull ball (or yarn cake) instead of in skein form, just let me know and I will be happy to do that for you at no extra cost.

Enemy Lines is SOLD OUT

Stark has 2 skeins left!

Whelkies is SOLD OUT

Very Scary Art has 2 skeins left!

Secret Lair is SOLD OUT

Eye of the Quyth is SOLD OUT

Street has 2 skeins left!

The creation of Street the yarn

There are currently (as of 5/27/12) 2 skeins of Street left

This colorway was completely unplanned.  Unlike, Secret Lair, that came to me as a gentle revelation; Street hit me like a lightning bolt. That wonderful moment of inspiration when you get the whole picture of something is one complete flash. I was absolutely giddy by it. This didn't require any thought, any work, any worry.  And, after agonizing over every decision for Quyth this was a welcome relief. 

Quyth and Street were the last two yarns and I dyed them on the same night. Quyth was all about planning and precision. It was really hard work. Street was like telling a two year old to finger-paint. It was the ice cold beer on a hot summer day.

I had originally planned to do a colorway based on Paul E. Cooley's Garaaga's Children series.  I wanted to explore the ancient landscape and all who lived there and then. That meant dark. I couldn't do another dark yarn. Not now. I needed more bright, light, and playful to balance things out. Quyth does a wonderful job of that but I needed another one.  I needed humor. And that's when Oscar bitch-slapped me.

We are all capable of that evil giggle...

I was dancing when I created this colorway.  It is a little twisted (it has to be if it's inspired by The Street collection), but it's also irreverent, smart-assed, cocky, and balls-to-the-wall fun. I hope you enjoy knitting with it even half as much as I enjoyed creating it.

It is green for Oscar (and the fraggles), yellow for Big and Bird,  red for Elmo, and blue for Cookie.

The creation of Eye of the Quyth

Eye of the Quyth is SOLD OUT

Like Whelkies, Eye of the Quyth is not named for a specific book, podcast, or website.  It is the strangest in terms of the inspiration and was by far the most difficult colorway I've ever attempted.

I had the idea for this colorway months ago. Originally it was just black, purple, orange, yellow, and hot pink. I kinda had an idea of how I was gonna pull it off.  Kinda. Sorta.

For the two of you who haven't read or listened to Scott Sigler's Galactic Football League of stories the coach of Quentin Barnes' team is a Quyth.  The Quyth have one eye and it changes color based on their emotions. I can relate on a human eyes are technically blue (a pale baby blue with a dark rim to be specific) but they can appear grey, green, or a bright turquoise depending on my mood, the lighting, or my clothing. So, eyes that become really cool colors like hot pink, yellow, orange... well, I couldn't pass up trying to create a colorway based on that.

It turns out there are something like 17 different colors (or more) that a Quyth eye can be...or there are at least that many ways that Sigler has describe their eye color.

I started with the premise that the normal color is black. I wanted that to be a predominant color. Then, I decided to let the colors mixing on the skein provide the shading some colors like blue and red needed. Rather than make half the skein black and half the other colors (which would have been a hell of a lot easier), I didn't want the black lining up against everything all the time while it was being knitted.  I wanted to at least give the other colors a shot at standing out on their own.

So I divided the skein into quarters (a common way for me to decide what to place where on the skein). And then it got crazy...  I further divided each quarter into thirds. So, I had a cool dozen mapped out around the skein. I've done ten before and vowed I wouldn't do more than eight ever again... Yeah, right. This was inspired by Sigler...I already knew shit was gonna get crazy.

The result is a wild and crazy colorway with yellow, orange, red, green, hot pink, purple, blue, and black.  There are various shade of everything which gives it a depth to go with the brightness.  All of the colorways up to this point have been very masculine and rather dark.  There's nothing wrong with that, but I really wanted to do something that was crazy, fun, bright, and cool.  Ta Da!

You can see all of the colorways, with links to the original work and the artists/podcasters/websites that inspired them, on the Balticon 2012 page.

The creation of Secret Lair the yarn

Secret Lair is SOLD OUT! Thank you to all who purchased a skein.

I've know Chris Miller and Dr. John Cmar for a little while now; even met John at Balticon last year. Chris is the "Overlord" at The Secret Lair website and podcast and along with John, David Moore, Natalie Metzger, and various contributors they inform and entertain about all things geeky and cool in a grown-up (well, most of the time) way.

My first impression of the podcast and website was the color blue with bits of brown. Sometimes I experience things in color. It's hard to explain but this was one of those times.  So, I asked Chris what his favorite color was and when he said, "Deep blue. The color of the light just before sunrise.", I knew I was onto something good.

The Balticon colorways are Limited Editions. What that means is they will never EVER be done again. It finally occurred to me that I can take advantage of that fact and create colorways that would be difficult to ever do again. So, like Whelkies, I used a method of dye application that is completely random instead of my trademark patterning. So, each of the skeins of Secret Lair is a little different...much like the various personalities who comprise the whole group endeavor that is The Secret Lair.

I wanted the finished result to be that color that Chris loves but I wanted to build layers underneath it that would give it depth, texture. So, I actually started with turquoise and brilliant blue. Over and next to that went royal blue. Finally, I put brown at specific intervals to give it some structure and followed that up with gunmetal blue and navy.  

The result is a colorway with sweetness, soul, and a little bit of attitude that immediately feels like an old friend. Welcome to The Secret Lair.

You can see all of the colorways, with links to the original work and the artists/podcasters/websites that inspired them, on the Balticon 2012 page.

The creation of Very Scary Art the yarn

There are currently (as of 5/27/12) 2 skeins left of Very Scary Art

Very Scary Art is a website run by my good friends, Helen and Mich. Here is what this site is about (and yes, I stole the following from the site itself)...

On October 30th, 2010, Helen and Mich attended the Rally to Restore Sanity and the March to Keep Fear Alive, hosted by Jon Stewart of The Daily Show and Stephen Colbert of The Colbert Report.  One of the charities benefiting from the rally was, an online charity that lets people help classrooms in need.  To say thank you for the donations raised, children drew pictures of their greatest fears and handed these drawings out at the rally.  At the end of the day, they still had over 500 drawings left and no way to get them home. That’s where we come in.
Helen and Mich couldn’t stand to see all those wonderful drawings end up in the recycling bin, so we took them home.  After contacting, we decided to set up this website where we could showcase all the drawings we got from the rally.  At least once a week, we plan to post a drawing and then write about what we like about it and why we think it’s very scary. We have some truly amazing works of art to show you, and we hope you’ll take time to comment on them.
The drawings are wonderful! I wanted to dye yarn in a complete rainbow of colors. When I started pondering how to do that and realizing that my colorway "Childhood" was already pretty much a rainbow, I looked for a way to make it different.  So, whereas Childhood has turquoise and fuchsia, I wanted this to be darker.  After all, this is about stuff that scares us...  So, it needed to be darker.  And, while the entire rainbow is present in this yarn, I applied the colors from darkest (blue) to lightest (yellow) so the areas of overlap are not very noticeable as overlap. I only used primary colors directly, the secondary colors (purple, orange, and green) are the result of the overlaps. So, while they are there, they are relatively small.

The patterning was the second issue I had to deal with here and I am thrilled at how it came out.  Much like the childrens' drawings the intent was to represent something scary and the result is rather charming.

You can see all of the colorways, with links to the original work and the artists/podcasters/websites that inspired them, on the Balticon 2012 page.

The creation of Whelkies the yarn

Whelkies is SOLD OUT!  Thank you to all who have made this possible.

Nathan Lowell wrote a series of books...  I had heard of them. Heard people raving about them. Seen tweets...  By the time I got around to listening to them, all six were out. And, it's a good thing, because I couldn't get enough of them.  I was able to listen for 8 hrs a day at work...and that wasn't enough. 

One of the things that struck me the most from these stories was the whelkies.  These are hand carved wooden figurines of animals with a bit of purple shell as the heart of the animal. 

I wanted to do a colorway to pay homage to this series of stories but for the longest time couldn't get an idea.  The stories take place on various trading ships or ports on distant planets and space stations.  The only color reference I could remember was the sapphire eye color of one character.  And then I remembered the whelkies and knew instantly that was the colorway.  

So, when I dyed the yarn for this colorway, I didn't apply the dye uniformly to all the skeins. Whelkies are all unique.  So are these skeins of yarn.  I put a splash of purple in just one place on each skein to symbolize the purple shell heart.  Some are bigger, some are darker. Again, each is different. Each is special.  I wanted the browns to streak, swirl, and pool in their own way like the grain of wood. I'm so pleased with the results, I hope you enjoy them too.

You can see all of the colorways, with links to the original work and the artists/podcasters/websites that inspired them, on the Balticon 2012 page.

The creation of Stark the yarn

There are currently (as of 5/27/12) 2 skeins of Stark available

The list of my favorite podcasters includes Jake Bible. Unfortunately, he won't be able to attend Balticon this year so that means I had to put on hold a colorway I had planned to do for the first book in his Apex Trilogy. I have very few rules about anything when it comes to creativity, but the creator of the work that inspires the yarn has to be attending Balticon...otherwise, how could it be a Balticon colorway? 

So, while I'm upset that I won't be able to meet Jake in person this year, his work will still be represented. How's that possible?  Well, he also did this really cool project called Stark this year.  It's an illustrated novella.  Yeah, a novella.  Not a graphic novel; though Stark is more than a little graphic.  Okay, it's a blood bath.  This project reminds me of an adult version of the books we read as kids where every couple of pages there is a full page illustration.  WAY cool!  

The artist that did the illustrations for Stark is Scott Pond.  And guess what? Yep, he'll be at Balticon this year.  And, really, it was the illustrations that inspired this colorway more than the story itself.  Although, the illustrations are well, illustrating the story...  So, I guess I got the inspiration from the work that was inspired by Stark.  So, this is a once-removed kind of project I suppose.

Anyway....  Stark lives up to its name.  I originally was thinking of just doing black and white with the splashes of red. But I love the silvery quality of Scott's work so I decided to use some of the silver grey too.  

I dyed Enemy Lines and Stark in the same session because of the commonalities of their colorways made for less dye mixing if I did them together.  I love that they are both so simple and yet complex when knit.

In a black and white world there will always be shades of grey and the inevitable spot of blood...

You can see all of the colorways, with links to the original work and the artists/podcasters/websites that inspired them, on the Balticon 2012 page.

The creation of Enemy Lines the yarn

Enemy Lines is SOLD OUT! Thank you to all who purchased a skein.

I have a few favorite authors/podcasters. These are folks who consistently produce stories I enjoy (many of which I've listened to multiple time AND read because they are just that good), and they also keep their podcast feed active with a constant stream of content.  The work they put out is not just good writing, it's a quality product on a regular basis...something that takes plenty of talent, sure; but more than that, it takes a lot of dedication and hard work. 

The first colorway, Enemy Lines, is based on one of these favorites. 

Enemy lines is a novel by John Mierau.  It is part sci-fi (with space travel, invading aliens, and friendly aliens) and part mystery/espionage thriller.  Mystery/espionage thriller type stories have always been among my favorites so I was really excited to listen to this.  It didn't disappoint!

I was immediately struck by one of the descriptions of the aliens as "the greys".  When the mysterious alien "Pusher" starts wreaking havoc with a yellow-green alien slime I knew I had to create a colorway based on this story.

This is a very simple colorway that will create some dramatic results in the finished project (much like this fantastic story).  It is dark and mysterious, sleek and sophisticated, with a splash of acid green irony and action.

You can see all of the colorways, with links to the original work and the artists/podcasters/websites that inspired them, on the Balticon 2012 page.

Saturday, May 12, 2012

It's Balticon Time!

It's that magical time of year again...

I have been up to my eyeballs in yarn, dye, and podcast goodness.  It's time for my favorite project of the year, namely the Balticon Limited Edition Colorways.  I will do separate posts for each of the colorways to talk about the inspiration, what I was going for, and the thoughts behind some of the creative choices I made.  And, there will be a post about ordering information...all of this over the next day or so.

And, a photo gallery will be up on the Balticon 2012 page as usual.  Without further are all of the colors for 2012.  I hope you enjoy knitting with them as much as I have enjoyed creating them.  I hope to see you at Balticon this year.

In the center is "Very Scary Art" and then clockwise from the upper right is "Enemy Lines", "Secret Lair:, "Street", "Eye of the Quyth", "Whelkies", and "Stark"

At the top is "Very Scary Art"; across the middle from left to right are: "Eye of the Quyth", "Whelkies", "Enemy Lines", "Secret Lair", and "Street"; and on the bottom is "Stark".