Interview with Kim Hartmann of At Knits End Yarns

15 Sep

At Knits End Yarns © Kim Hartmann

Kim Hartmann, creator of At Knits End Yarns, sat down with me today and answered all my questions about dyeing, smells, and why her yarn is so absolutely fantastically yummy.

Miss Vicious: When did you dye your first skein of yarn?

Kim:About 2 years ago…Maybe a year and a half? And the very first thing I dyed was dorset wool for spinning with acid dye. Was trying to match the pink of a Stargazer lily. Switched to kool-aid shortly after.

I Put A Spell On Ewe © Kim Hartmann

MV: How did you first start dyeing yarn?
Kim: By the time I started with yarn I was dyeing exclusively with kool-aid. I started doing yarn as well as spinning fiber because not everyone spins and as long as I am dyeing, it doesn’t really matter to me what it is. It’s all about the wool , not what form it is. Wool is a fucking magical thing.

MV: Why did you decide to dye yarn?
Kim:Was just that not everyone spins and it is awesome to see something I dyed knit up.

MV: Why did you switch from acid dyes to kool-aid?
Kim: Just don’t care for the acid dyeing process at all. Think kool aid challenges me in a way I like. Really have to think about how I am going to get a color using a limited selection. Plus smells way better

MV: From start to finish, how long does the dyeing process take?
Kim: If I include pre-soak and cooling time would say 3-4 hours per skein, but can do several skeins at once so that time is a bit misleading

MV: What inspires you to come up with your colorways?
Kim: Everything. Have gotten inspired from everything from flowers to sunsets to Muppets to a bruise. My dyeing is very much like my personality. If you know me, or follow me on Twitter, you can see that whatever I am obsessing over at the time usually makes an appearance in the dyepot.

MV: What’s your favorite flavor to dye with?
Kim: Lemon-lime smells the best to me

Ewe look mauve-ulous © Kim Hartmann

MV: Why does the yarn smell so good? Is it because of the kool-aid?
Kim: Yep. Thats why. Also I store undyed yarns and dyed ones with lavender so people may get hints of that too.

MV: What is your favorite colorway that you’ve come up with?
Kim: Oh boy. They are all my babies. Dont know that I could pick a favorite.

MV: What is the most complicated thing you’ve ever done with dyeing?
Kim: Probably getting a chocolate brown. Not easy to do with koolaid. (Miss Vicious Note – The colorway Kim is referring to is Ewe Can Suck It.)

MV: How do you come up with the names for your colorways?
Kim:The names come from all over the place too. The only consistent thing is the ewe. Sometimes the name comes first and I will think about what that means to me color-wise, but often its the opposite. Sometimes friends will suggest them, and often am talking or texting with a friend and something comes that way.

I want ewe to want me © Kim Hartmann

MV: What is your preferred yarn to knit with? Your own? Name brand? Or do you not discriminate?
Kim:Am a stupid yarnie snob. Will admit it freely. Fleece artist is by far my favorite yarn of all time. Also have yarnie boner for Noro. Have been using my yarns alot lately….So I don’t have to use stash yarn and can keep it forever, after all can get more of the yarn I dyed anytime I want.

You can find At Knit’s End on Etsy and you can Kim on Twitter.

Sparkle ewe-r cake © Kim Hartmann

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3 Responses to “Interview with Kim Hartmann of At Knits End Yarns”

  1. Kim September 16, 2011 at 12:09 am #

    Thanks Miss Vicious!!

  2. Ned Pinjagic September 16, 2011 at 5:11 pm #

    wow impresive

  3. inspirationbykaren September 18, 2011 at 3:30 am #

    Lovely yarns!!!

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