Artists ~ Cheryl Merritt ~ North Kingstown

Artist’s name: Cheryl Merritt
Shop name: June Pryce Fiber Arts
Website: www.etsy.com/shop/juneprycefiberarts
Blog: juneprycefiberarts.blogspot.com/
Twitter: dyenamicdyestress
Facebook: juneprycefiberarts
Pinterest: Cheryl Merritt and Jennifer Barber
Other: Duckyknits.blogspot.com, is my sister's (partner) blog

1. Tell us about your work:
It's really a family affair. In my cool basement Studio (my old catering kitchen) I hand dye spinning fibers, to be used to make hand spun yarn or used in the felting process, paint silk mawata (hankies) that can be used the same way and dye commercially spun yarns using an acid-actuated (white vinegar) dyeing process. I also make carded Batts, scarf kits for nuno felting and felted soaps. My sister/partner, Jenn, designs knitwear, makes project bags, stitchmarkers and Knit Links (a unique shawl pin alternative). Both Jenn and I spin. My husband makes nostepinnes (human powered ball winders), my eldest son makes my skein winding equipment and my youngest has just made me a drum carder for the batts.

2. How did you come to be a professional artist/crafter/designer?
Again, I can thank my family, we have always been a crafty bunch.
I was working as a Chef (and hateing it) and Shibori dyeing quilt fabrics for my mother in my spare time. Jenn was already designing knitwear and doing some spinning when she was given some undyed wool and asked if I could "cook" it for her. After that I was HOOKED! The colors! That soft, soft fiber.....yum!

3. Where do you draw your inspiration?
Nature mostly, I live in the most beautiful of states. Rhode Island is gorgeous and all I have to do is look around for tons of inspiration. The beaches, the hiking trails, the mansions, you name it and a potential colorway is there.



4. What’s your favorite item to create?
Ooh, that is actually a tough question. The spinning fiber is "easy" to dye, it is a creative process that is more relaxed and free form. The yarn skeins take a bit more attention but the results are really breathtaking .



5. What’s your best seller?
Right now it is our Mini-Skein sets. 6 separate 100 yard skeins that are dyed to work together. These allow for mixing and matching colors in your knitwear or giving you an Ombre effect.



6. How long have you been in Rhode Island?
We have been her for quite a while, 20 years! We moved east from California where my husband had been stationed in the Navy. We both grew up in New York and felt that New England was the perfect place to raise our family.

7. What do you {heart} about Rhode Island?
Being so close to the seashore. There is nothing better than going grocery shopping and hearing sea gulls and smelling the sea air. I didn't have that growing up on the farm in New York.

8. Please include anything else you’d like to add:
I have a Trunk Show at the Mermaids Purl in Wickford on March 15th. Anyone interested can stop in meet me and check out the gorgeous yarns!

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