Welcome to the fiber industry!
Hand crafting with yarn has been around for many centuries including mediums such as weaving, handknitting, crochet, and numerous other applications too many to list.
In the 1980s, the production of yarn for handcrafting was all but dead with only seven mills in the world processing fiber suitable for such applications. A core group of individuals involved in the import of fibers suitable for hand crafting ban together, and through national promotion and publication, they created a resurgence in the industries of handknitting, crochet and weaving. The interest in these handcrafts grew steadily over the next 28 years and evolved into the industry we have today. It was only a short few years ago that handcrafters had to rely on local brick and mortar outlet to feed their interest. With the evolution of e-commerce including websites and phone applications, finding the perfect material is no longer limited to a brick-and-mortar store front.
Starting around the year of 2014, the birth of independent dyers started to emerge into the marketplace. Deeply passionate knit and crochet enthusiasts found the desire to break away from the mass manufactured colorways into the world of self-expression through color on hand-painted knitting yarns. Many of these independent dyers used nothing more than their home kitchens create their own lines of colored knitting yarn. They market these jewels nationally through websites such as Etsy, Instagram, and eBay.
It was not long before the local yarn shop communities started to recognize the value of carrying these unique colorways in their inventory. The demand was so high, the largest issue the local yarn shops faced was supplying the demand.
Fast forward 10 Years and you will see there are countless numbers of companies that were burst out of their own kitchens as independent dyers that now supply their local yarn shops with these unique colors and textures of yarn. As I travel across the United States, one of my favorite things is to find is when I walk into a local yarn sop and find yarn from independent dyers being supported at the root level. This movement gave birth to companies of all sizes, ranging from small and limited to an etsy account to companies that have grown large enough to supply yarns to the entire US market.
What sets one hand Dyre apart from another?
It would be easy to look at this industry and consider this a trend. Something that may die away over time or lose the interest of the retail customer. What keeps so many companies from trying to duplicate what the other has to offer? Hand dyed yarns are similar to art. You can see a designer’s personality and preferences through their color placements and combination. There are many base yarns to choose from, as well as multiple different dying processes, to create unique and individual choices that keep each design separate from the other. A critical component in the hand dying process is the water. Something in the water hast to make the color stick to the fiber. This substance is called a mordant. Commonly known Morton’s are iron oxide, citric acid, or vinegar. The water a designer chooses makes all the difference in how their colors apply to the fiber.
Why Hot Springs Arkansas?
There are, but a handful of places within the United States where you have access to natural spring water. The spring water in Hot Springs Arkansas is already impregnated with heavy iron oxide, a natural mordant that would be any hand dyers dream. This, alone, sets Hot Springs Fiber Company apart from any other independent dyer in the nation. Additionally, other trade secrets in the hand dying process allow Hot Springs fiber company to produce deeper and richer colors on a larger product scale. With the ability to produce a higher volume of product while maintaining color consistency and reproduction of design makes Hot Springs fiber company a natural choice for any retailer that wants to offer an independently dyed product on a long-term basis.
Tracie Anderson, the CEO of Hot Springs fiber company has a history of design that has been pulled from life experience. These designs have been published in magazines such as Iiterweave Knits and Vogue Magazine. Having a designer at the wheel ensures that the colors you see in the packaged product have been carefully manipulated to look just as good in the finished product.
As you take your journey through the Hot Springs Fiber Company website, you will see many of the colors and patterns have detailed stories of inspiration behind their development. We welcome you to experience what has inspired us through color and design here at Hot Springs Fiber Company.