We had the absolute pleasure of interviewing the uber-talented dyer & owner of LolaBean Yarn Co, Adella Colvin. This woman is a force to be reckoned with and recently took her brand international! We love everything about our new ESK family member & can’t wait for y’all to read Adella’s responses as she spills the beans about how she came to bring her unique yarn into our lives. Read along & get ready to fall more in love with LolaBean Yarn Co.
Tell us about LolaBean Yarn Co. Location, how it started, etc…
At the end of 2011, my husband’s job shipped him out to Afghanistan for a year. We had just gotten married and I was miserable & all alone in Georgia. I missed my family and friends in New York, I missed my husband, and was worried to death about him.
Our neighbor, Bonnie, such a sweet woman by the way, used to strike up conversations with me whenever I was running out or she was on her way in. One day she invited me in for coffee. I accepted. When I entered her home, I saw all types of throw pillows and blankets. I asked her where she had gotten them from and she told me they were all hand made by her. From that moment I wanted to learn how to make some things for myself.
I originally started out as Adella’s Crochet Cottage. I mainly sold finished knitted and crocheted products like hats and scarves. One day I walked into a local yarn store to check out what they had. To my dismay, the person working there at the time didn’t greet me or anything. She simply stated that “the restroom is for paying customers only”. I guess she assumed that for whatever reason that I wasn’t there to purchase yarn, so from that day I told myself that I’d just dye my own yarn.
The name change to LolaBean Yarn Co came about after the birth of my daughter. I wanted to create something that I could eventually pass down to her one day. So when people see the logo, they are seeing my baby girl in all of her beautiful brown glory. It’s not every day that you see a little brown baby on a company logo, especially in the fiber industry.
What does your yarn dying process look like?
It all started out in our kitchen. I was using four of those restaurant tabletop warmers. It got to the point where dyeing in that space was unsuitable. I was able to move operations into the garage. It is fulfilling its purpose right now, but eventually I will have to move into a bigger space.
How do you choose the colorways and their names?
For the most part, the colorways just kind of come to me. There really isn’t a secret formula or process. The only time that I really sit down and think about things is when I am preparing for the subscription based colorways. I put a lot of thought and effort into those.
Who taught you to knit?
My lovely neighbor Bonnie who I mentioned above. This occurred during the time my husband was a DOD Contractor and had to deploy to Afghanistan. We would chat from time to time whenever we crossed paths. One day she invited me over for coffee. I saw all the lovely pieces that she knitted and crocheted herself. I told her of my interest and desire to learn and the rest is history.
What dyers do you admire?
Kim from Kim Dyes Yarn
Aimee from La Bien Aimee
Terra from Mitchell’s Creations
Diarus from Diarus Made
What are you currently knitting?
A My Boy Lollipop top by Nancy Ricci.
When you’re not dyeing or chasing your mini Adella, where would we find you?
On the rare occasion that I do take a break, you can find me watching something on Netflix and knitting.
What are your hobbies/interests outside of the fiber community?
I have a thing for sneakers. Not quite a “sneaker head”, but when I see a pair of sneakers that catches my eye, I tend to break out the plastic. Beyond that I LOVE music. My tastes are all over the place. My husband teases me sometimes because whenever we’re driving my playlists can go from Nas and DMX to Dolly Parton or Pet Shop Boys. I also love movies, in particular a good horror movie. Although I can never watch them unless my husband is around.
Do you have plans to expand? New colorways? New bases?
I think it’s the goal of any entrepreneur to expand their business. I am looking forward to the day that I can move out of my home based studio (which is our two car garage at the moment) to a more spacious environment. I also plan to start working with more higher end bases such as camel, alpaca, cashmere and silk.
If you were to create an ESK colorway, what would it look like?
It would start with a nice semi-solid, throw in some deeply saturated earth tones and finish it off with some bright speckles.
Do you have anything you’d like to say to our knitters/crocheters?
Thank you for choosing and supporting LolaBean Yarn Co. I appreciate every single purchase and kind comment/like on my social media accounts. Now that I am able to get out more, I hope to personally meet as many of the folks that I interact with online and who make purchases as I can.
Thanks so much, Adella, for giving us this glimpse into your corner of the world! To see Adella’s yarns on our website, click here but be prepared. Drooling may ensue.