Who is Neon Unicorn Studios?
TL,DR: I’m a former zoo keeper who discovered how fun it is to dye wool yarn.
Once upon a time, I was a zoo keeper. I loved it! Working with all sorts of cool animals like 3-banded armadillos, sand cats, poison dart frogs, geckos, and yes, lots of different kinds of snakes, was a lot of fun.
Although I had to leave that world when my 2nd child was born, I still have a part of it with me. I share my home with some genetically related humans, 2 goofy cats, a cockatiel, and an Amazon parrot. If you are severely allergic to cats, I can not guarantee that my products are allergen free.
I’m a big science fiction fan. We love all things Star Wars in this house. Firefly, Star Trek, and Dune are some of my favorite universes, too.
How did I turn into a Yarnie? Well, it all started with ear infections and diaper rash. Say what?? I’m not kidding.
My second child was on antibiotics A LOT! I turned to cloth diapering to help alleviate the resulting diaper rash. Money was tight then since I wasn’t working…and those cloth diapers are expensive! I made diapers with a serger and old cotton t-shirts. I also made diaper covers out of wool sweaters I found at the thrift store. But that wasn’t enough for me. I was bitten by the “knitting bug” while pregnant and I was really interested in knitting some wool diaper covers.
That’s was what led me to discover that I could dye wool yarn with Kool Aid. One of my first dyeing efforts was a Kool Aid rainbow (pictured right).
Fast-forward a bit. I found Ravelry and soon became a moderator for the Kool Aid dyeing forum there: What a Kool Way to Dye. I developed many “formulas” to produce hard-to-get colors and gained lots experience working with Kool Aid. My minor in chemistry came in handy.
By May 2008, I decided to open an Etsy shop and sell my Kool Aid dyed, non-superwash, worsted weight wools for others to enjoy. My target audience back then was the diaper-cover-knitting moms. Because of that, I chose “Munchkin Knitworks” as my shop’s name: a reference to my two munchkins. I also sold a few knitted covers as well as a diaper cover pattern in my shop back then. Eventually, I turned to professional acid dyes and stopped selling the knitted items.
In 2010, some family members gave me an item that was salvaged from an abandoned storefront they were helping to clean. They knew it had something to do with yarn, but didn’t know what it was. It was a warping board! It is a tool used primarily in weaving to wind long lengths of yarn. That same year, I had a custom order that was a game changer: self-striping rainbow sock yarn. That first rainbow (pictured right) was on a nice cashmere/Merino/nylon blend, too. YUM! That pic is also the unicorn’s mane in my logo.
That’s when my self-striping yarns really took off! In August of 2012, I had a 10th Anniversary of Firefly-themed shop update that was all self-striping sock yarn inspired by the show. The self-striping rainbows started flying out the door shortly thereafter.
I have had some mobility and health issues in recent years, so I don’t always have an overflow of inventory listed for sale. But now that my health seems to be stabilizing, I am concentrating on growing my yarn business. To that end, I have decided to rename my Etsy shop and am embarking on this website-building journey. My new name is a fusion of my childhood love of all things unicorn, an adjective used to describe the colors of my most popular rainbow, and a vague reference to a common internet meme you may have come across…but dd thought the name “Farting Unicorn Studios” was too gross 😉 LOL
Thanks for stopping by Neon Unicorn Studios.