FAQs (Or, at least, "Asked Questions")

 Got questions? Please start here! If you can't find what you're looking for, you can email me at republica.unicornia.yarns@gmail.com. If you ask me a question I've already answered here, I reserve the right not to respond to your email. 

 

When will I get my stuff?

For in stock items, your order will be lovingly packed and shipped out within 3-5 business days from the time you order (this doesn’t included actual shipping time). Please allow 4-6 weeks before shipping for dyed-to-order yarn (sweater quantities).

 

We do ship internationally, and we are at the mercy of Shopify for rates and transit time. All import duties and taxes to be paid by customer (that’s you).  

 

I live in Atlanta: can I do local pickup or come visit the studio?

Nope. It’s a giant time and energy suck for me to arrange logistics to meet in a public place. My studio is in my home and isn’t open to visitors. You can see a video tour here.

 

I love your fabrics! Where do you get them?

Awwww, thanks! I love them too! I spend a lot of time sourcing fun and unique fabrics, and part of the purchase price of bags includes that time and energy, so I don’t share my fabric sources. Nothing I use is super secret, and some sleuthing on the Internets will probably get you the information you want.

 

Can I have a pattern for your bags?

Nope. That’s my business. Literally. My bags are all custom designed by me to be functional, durable, and use materials efficiently.

 

Where do you get your yarn?

I don’t share the names of the mills I use—I do spend quite a bit of time (and money) sourcing my yarn bases. I want you to love them, but I’d really rather you loved them with *my rainbows* on them.

 

Something to consider before you ask small businesses to provide you propriety information: this is our livelihood. Even if you don’t mean it this way, what we hear is, “I love the thing you are selling, and I’d love to make it myself. Can you tell me who your suppliers are so I can bypass spending money with your business?”

 

I’m SO SAD I missed out on (x bag) *sad face emoji*. Can I preorder one?

I’m so sorry you missed the bag you wanted. I don’t do preorders and my bags are all limited runs, not because I am a Cruel Mean Person Who Hates Joy, but because I am a human. By the time a bag is finished, I’ve spent a lot (A LOT) of quality time with it and no matter how great the fabric is, I’m done. Sometimes I’ll reprise fabrics, sometimes I won’t. I can’t stop buying fabric, so even if you missed out on the bag you thought was The One, I guarantee there will be more awesome ones down the line.

  

The yarn I want is sold out. Do you do dyed-to-order/preorder?

I will do dyed-to-order for sweater’s quantities (four or more skeins of the same colorway on the same base) and for special occasions like Advent, but in general, I don’t. Sustainability is really important to me—and I’m not here for creativity carpal tunnel syndrome from dyeing the same thing I’m not necessarily feeling over and over again. I love dyeing yarn and I would like to keep doing so, and obligation is a joy thief for me.

 

What needle size do I use with your yarn?

My label doesn’t list a suggested needle size. A lot of commercial yarns tell you needle size for the weight of yarn, but I found when I started knitting that I ignored that and looked at the pattern, because the issue isn’t the needle size—it’s the pattern gauge (number of stitches per inch). The smaller the needle size, the more stitches per inch, and the tighter the gauge. The same weight of yarn can be used to knit socks (tighter gauge) and drapey garments (looser gauge). My advice is to listen to the pattern and swatch if you’re nervous.

 

What does OOAK mean?

OOAK is an acronym for “One of a Kind,” and it’s just that. I’m a little, um, obsessive about making my colorways repeatable, but sometimes I let loose and play. OOAKs are unique, one shot deals.

 

Why do you stock the yarn bases you do?

I’ve always been low-key terrified that no one will buy my yarn, so I stock what I want to knit with, just in case. This means a lot of fingering weight yarn (not a lot of call for aran-weight sweaters in Georgia), but also wool from some less-common breeds. Superwash Merino yarn is kind of industry standard for hand-dyed yarn, but I find it pills a little more easily than I’d prefer (especially in garments), which is why I went in so hard for Bluefaced Leicester (BFL) early on. It’s also a (small) way to support the British wool industry. I’m also proud to be stocking more wools that are grown and processed in the United States: both the Targhee and the Merino Sock are products of the US. It’s a big world and there are more sheep breeds besides Merino out there! I love when people fall in love with a new one.

 My favorite yarn base is the BFL DK. We’re in love. It makes the BEST sweaters and hats. And you can’t beat socks made out of BFL Sock—they hold up beautifully.

 

How did you get into dyeing?

I learned how to do fiber reactive dyeing first (think fancy tie dye) and LOVED it, but there’s only so many tea towels you need. After I learned how to knit, I fell in love with hand-dyed yarn but it was beyond my budget to buy as much as I wanted. I figured yarn couldn’t be THAT different than fabric, so I bought some yarn and dyes and played in my kitchen. I got hooked pretty quickly, but had no intention of starting a business. I was also in desperate need of a new career, and things lined up. For the first couple of years, every five minutes I was SURE I’d have to go get a job that required dress pants, but here I am, wearing stretch pants from the kid’s section and flinging dye around. I am very happy.

 

What inspires you?

Music is big for me. 80s-90s nostalgia. Nature. Sometimes colorways are inspired by everyday things (Post Apocalyptic Dance Party and Queen of New York City were both inspired by sheet sets that we own). Sometimes I think of names first, sometimes I think of colors. I’ve always been really color-driven, and so it’s natural for me to want to translate things I love into dyed yarn.  The stories behind the colorway names are in the yarn listings, if you’d like to know why on earth I named something “Unicorn Smoothie.”

 

What are nonprofits and causes that are important to you?

Republica Unicornia has twin business mottos: “Make good stuff/Don’t be a jerk.” For me, “Don’t be a jerk” means “Do what you can to make the world suck less.”

 It matters to me to keep it local, so you’ll see a lot of regional/state/Atlanta organizations here. I’m a BIG fan of organizations that work for voter access, particularly Fair Fight and New Georgia Project. I also love the educational/advocacy work Southern Poverty Law Center does (and 50% of the sale price of these pins goes there!)

I also am a proponent of mutual aid, especially Free99Fridge in Atlanta.

 

I come here for yarn, not for politics! I wish you’d keep your opinions to yourself.

Uhhh, no? This is my business and one of the (few) joys of capitalism is that you can choose to spend your money with people whose values align with yours. The pretty yarn and cute bags are made by a human (*waves*) who has been like this since she was sixteen. Just to be clear—my politics are rooted in deep care and compassion and a staunch belief that all humans deserve to live full, healthy, happy lives. The intertwined systems of white supremacy, patriarchy, and late-stage capitalism must be dismantled in order for this to happen.

 

What are your top ten favorite albums, ranked?

1.Blood on the Tracks, Bob Dylan

2. In the Aeroplane Over the Sea, Neutral Milk Hotel

3. The Creek Drank the Cradle, Iron & Wine

4. Speaking in Tongues, Talking Heads

5. Rubber Soul, The Beatles

6. Ten Years Together, Peter, Paul, and Mary

7. Led Zeppelin IV

8. Rumors, Fleetwood Mac

9. Rum, Sodomy, and the Lash, The Pogues

10. Castaways and Cutouts, The Decemberists

 

Okay, no one asked this, and I’m totally not sponsored in any way, but here’s some of my favorite yarn hardware (I didn’t provide links but you can figure it out!)

Stanmore Heavy Duty Ball Winder

Stanmore Umbrella Swift

ChiaoGoo Twist 5” Interchangable Needle Set

Knitter’s Pride Rainbow Knit Blockers

Addi EasyKnit Fixed Circular Needles (for small circumferences like socks and sleeves—they’re 10” and one needle is longer than the other, which makes them much more comfortable to hold than traditional tiny circular needles)