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The Crochet Express National Crochet Month Blog Tour
Want to Chat about the Tour?
Part of the fun of taking a passenger steam train trip is talking with your fellow passengers. This year, we’re providing two locations where our passengers can get to know each other. We’d love to hear about your favorite things you’ve discovered on the tour and see photos of your current crochet projects. You’re invited to join us daily for virtual cocktails/appetizers and dinner. (We’ll be sharing links to some fabulous recipes!)
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Crochetville is very proud to have Nurturing Fibres with us today, March 6, as one of the featured yarn companies on our 2016 Designer Blog Tour in honor of National Crochet Month (NatCroMo).
About Nurturing Fibres
By Carlé Dehning
Nurturing Fibres started in 2003 when I started to knit socks and began my quest for the perfect sock yarn. The colors/quality available locally were so disappointing that I realized I would have to learn to dye my own yarns. Within the first month, I had to start selling to friends because I was dyeing more yarn than I could knit and did not want to stop dyeing. Soon I began supplying a local shop and was enjoying my days, playing with colour.
Nurturing Fibres has grown considerably over the last few years. I no longer dye yarn in my kitchen; instead, we have a wonderful dye house on our family farm. I still do all the colour development and Nolundi manages the dye house. My colour ways are inspired by nature and my life experiences, so sometimes the colors are bold and other times they are muted. Our yarn dyeing team uses techniques that I have perfected over the last 13 years and dyes variegated, mottled, self striping, and semi-solid colourways. Colourways are dyed in small dye lots to ensure a high standard and uniqueness.
Our yarns are carefully hand selected to insure that they are the best quality merino wool, bamboo, and cotton available. We are proud of the high quality fibres that South African farmers produce, so where possible, work with yarns that come from SA farms. All our yarns are are locally spun.
We are conscious that, if not properly managed, our passion for dyeing yarn could have an environmental impact. We believe that by careful planning we can make a difference. With this in mind, we designed our dye house to run with the lowest possible environmental impact and the greatest possible socio-economic benefit to our very small local Xhosa community.
Using Renewable Energy resources: We use solar power to heat our water for dyeing and only top up the temperature if need be. In the dye house, the water is gravity fed instead of being pumped. Yarns are dried naturally either in the sunshine or over our Aga Stove. All our skeining and balling is done by hand.
Job creation: Work (especially with a fair wage) is very scarce in the country side so we are proud to be able to employ so many wonderful people and see them support their families and offer their children an improved education. It takes a whole day for one dye batch to be balled, since we can dye up to 14 dye lots a day [70kgs] this means that 14 jobs can be created just in the balling department. We also employ 4 dyers, 1 washer and 1 skein maker.
Water is precious: The water used to soak the skeins in preparation for dyeing is recycled and used to irrigate the staff vegetable garden. All other water used in the dyeing process is ph balanced and then used to irrigate the 120 Olive trees. The washing of equipment and the yarn is done with Borehole water. As this water is sourced on the farm, it has a much lower environmental impact compared to other water sources.
Our supplies: Our wool is from local free ranging sheep that are non-mulesed. Our cotton is locally grown and while not certified organic, it has been farmed with these principles. The dyes are Oeko-Teko approved as they do not contain any restricted substances listed on the Oeko-Tex Standard 100 list.
Please visit us either on www.nurturingfibres.co.za
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