Behind the New Zealand Colorways

Behind the New Zealand Colorways

What a roller coaster ride this year has already been! I was going to start doing the
big craft fair shows starting in February with the American Craft Made show in Baltimore, but that was postponed until May due to Covid.  It was a mixture of emotions when this call was made. I felt relieved without  a timeline crunch and sad because it has been over 2 years since I have done any of the big craft fairs. I miss getting to see you and have you try on my scarves and the newest addition of the capelets.    On the other hand it has given me the time to finally bring new colorways to my looms.   Here is the story behind the Colorways coming soon!


Kereru or the Wood pigeon of New Zealand.

 In 2020 I launched a new product line-my own sustainable hand dyed yarn line. I have been dyeing yarn since 2007, when I learned to dye from my amazing professor Nancy Taylor at Earlham College.   While writing this I just realized I have been dyeing yarn for 14 years!! I took what she taught me and I have expanded that over the years trying lots of techniques and taking workshops. These skills were expanded upon when I was obtaining my Masters in Fine Arts, when I really started to develop my dyeing and hand painting voice. Plus I was a professional yard dyer for a company for 4 years so I  know a bit about dyeing!

white woman applying dye in shaded of blue, green and red onto yarn with a fence in the background.
I LOVE color, like really love color.

 It became pretty clear to do some pivoting and create yarn for my fellow weavers.  For that first launch of hand painted yarn I focused on a collection of birds that I hold a deep love for, the birds of New Zealand. I found my passion for birding when I was doing my study abroad based in Christchurch.   Did you know that there is only 1 native mammal in New Zealand?  It is bats! All other mammals were introduced, which caused a lot of issues for the native bird populations, because they were not accustomed to predators and had little to no fear of them.  This led to their numbers declining and special parks being formed to give the birds a space to recover. That includes completely predator free islands!!! I was fortunate enough to visit several of these predator free zones. The precautions are incredible, think Jurassic park style double gate systems with 12 foot walls equipped with anti climb systems plus anti dig precautions that go 4 feet into the ground!   It was magical entering these isolated jungles with giant ferns, huge buttress roots  and birds flitting around filling the air with their songs.  On one such island park I saw my first Kiwi,  Pukeko and the adorably round Takahae.   I even got to interact with a Kea, the world’s only alpine parrot, and giant trouble makers!  They fly right up to you and land on your shoulder looking to see what kind of mischief they can get up to.  It was these magical moments I wanted to capture and bring to life for mine and my fellow weavers looms.  

 Kea parrot on white womans shoulder while she is squating down.
Kea on my shoulder!


These birds evoke a sense off whimsy and adventure I want you to feel when you wear the Kea, Kokako, Kereru, and Sacred Kingfisher scarves! The varied colors, from the Kereru with  luscious amethyst, bright jade, deep forest green, soft gray/ blue, are  all set off by pops of reddish coral.

 Woven with Eastern Bluebird weft. 


The soothing grey fading to black with muted blue of the Kokako colorway. 

Woven in light lavender. 


The Sacred Kingfisher is a colorway true to my color sense with deep teals paired with medium orange, and pops of flashy aqua all balanced by soft gray transitions. 

 Woven in Catbird Grey.


The Kea colorway is very different from my normal “go to” colors with greens and browns front and center with accents of terra-cotta and a teal blue. 

 Woven with Barn Swallow weft.

You know what-I am really digging it! I don’t tend to be drawn to greens and browns but I can see how they are appealing together when you add in pops of other colors. This is why I always pull inspiration from  birds. Nature is full of fascinating color combos that show how various colors can be combined in such stunning balance with one another.  It's always an adventure when trying out new color combinations.  Will they work? Will I like them? Will you like them??  It is a gamble to create work that gives me joy as well as lighting up your smile when you put it on. 

Kea in flight.

There is a colorway for you in this collection.  I am so excited to be weaving these colorways  after designing them in 2020! These colorways look stunning on the loom and are going to make a wonderful addition to your eco fashion outfits. 


Check out those blue wattles of the Kokako!!!



Back to blog

Leave a comment