Sunday, May 6, 2012

Celebrating Shorebirds

The snowheaps are melting, the bare land is cropping up with new growth, the fishermen are swarming and getting their boats geared up for the first opening  on the flats of the Copper River Delta, and a sure sign that spring has arrived and summer is right around the corner is the annual migration and arrival of thousands, literally thousands of shorebirds into the area.  There is a buzz in the air and soon, before we know it, summer will be in full swing, town swollen with cannery workers, fishing boat crewpersons, and visitors from afar.  The mountains of snow will be a memory and in their place will be wildflowers and berry bushes full of ripe and delicious berries.   It is a comfort knowing that  even our own winters are a time that will surely pass and  will eventually transform into a season bursting forth with growth and abundant life.

In Cordova, we have an annual Shorebird Festival to observe the arrival of the massive numbers of birds that pass through our region.   We celebrated here at the shop by making bird garlands and by presenting three new shop colorways.

We hope you will enjoy the newest members of our collection of nature and art inspired custom Net Loft yarns.  First off, to celebrate the magnificent flocks of  sandpipers that meet up at Hartney Bay, is a yarn we call Hartney Bay Sandpiper, dyed by Sharon McMahon of Three Irish Girls.


Golden Yellow/Orange  and brown are the feathers , white for their chests and dots of color represent their dotted chests, all against a lovely soft blue sky.   These are the colors of Hartney Bay Sandpiper, and are inspired by the rt of Erin Cooper and the photography of local photographer Milo Burcham, as well as the photos of Jon Cornforth and Arthur Morris.  Colleen has knit a lovely sock in the “Mountain Colors Fascine Braid Sock” pattern  by Mountain Colors, to show how the color knits up.

It is very fun, (can you see the little specks?) and I just keep imagining a little boy or girl sweater in this colorway,  to be worn with brown little sweatpants or leggings underneath.  A sweet colorway on a multitude of Three Irish Girls Base Yarns, as well as fiber. There is a limited number on each base.  Call or email for details or requests.  (thenetloft at

Our second new colorway is a lovely teal blue green with a little brown variegated called “Three Mile Bay after a painting by local artist, Susan Ogle called “Three Mile Bay”.  

Oh my goodness, this is a beautiful color if you like natural northwest scenery.  Sharon did a fantastic job incorporating the colors of the painting into this yarn, which really reflect  the beautiful colors of Cordova surroundings.

The scene in the painting is at Three Mile  Bay and the view of Orca Inlet and Hawkins Island.  The yarn and the painting together captures this time where new growth has just begun, but in the midst of still patches of snow.

It is a tone darker and more developed than “Almost Spring” and reflects the movement of color into more saturated tones as the snow melts and the colors of the oncoming season continue to emerge, with a background of spruce forests.   It is showing clear signs of the inevitable melting...that white layer is making way for those lovely  shades of oncoming variating blues... Susan's painting is so lovely and the colors of this yarn resonate with Sharon's own artistic interpretation.

Can you tell how much I love this colorway? It is  a softish medium tone,  subtle and very natural, and perfect for both men, women and children. Colleen knit this Chic Knits cupcake hat  in “Three Mile Bay” Elenya Alpaca, modeled here by Malia. This is a simple pattern which has a nice fit, and the soft watercolor effect of the yarn makes for a very wearable hat.

Our third color is from Shelly at Snow Capped and is modeled after an Erin Cooper art  piece entitled “Dowitcher”. 

This yarn is a shaded tonal rose brown and one staff member is planning on mixing this with the ‘Three Mile Beach” for a colorwork pattern as they go so nicely together.  What is wonderful is that we are featuring this yarn in very very fine camel lace (1750 yards/100 g) as well as on both Aran and DK Cashmere. 

This is a limited edition yarn and available in short supply on  eight different bases, some only having two skeins each.  I would like to work with the Cashmere Aran and make something cozy and yummy to wrap around my neck.  Shelly captured the colors in Erin’s artwork perfectly and I love the neutral yet rich color tones in her newest Snow Capped colorway. 

And then, there are the new necklaces…
The artwork is from the art and photography of the same artists who inspired the yars, Erin Cooper, Milo Burcham, Jon Cornforth, and Arthur Morris.  On the back side are a variety of maps cut outs of Cordova, Hartney Bay and the Copper River Delta.  They are $22 each and come with a chain but can also be worn with a long velvet or satin ribbon. 

Do stop in if you can, if anything just to see the wonderful photographs and artwork that celebrate this time of year when the birds just simply know where to go and what to do.  I sometimes wish it were that simple just taking to the air and knowing deep inside which way to go.  I do have a general sense of direction, but often not sure which way I am heading, and often bogged down with all the decisions.

Today I say, enjoy watching the birds, and remember  who takes care of them and shows them where to go,  and   take it to heart and follow their lead...not to worry, listen for that inward direction and just head thataway.

Welcome Shorebirds!....Happy May everyone...Hope you like the new yarns...Come take a peek...

with love,
Net Loft Dotty

Artwork and Photography Credits and Thanks to :
 Milo Burcham, Erin Cooper,  Jon Cornforth,  Arthur Morris,  and Susan Ogle

ps...Thanks to daughter Nelly for helping with display and hanging branches with flowers for me...