About

Hello! I'm Lyla, the dyer behind Terrapin Fiberworks. I've been dyeing plant yarns since 2021 and loving every messy second of it. I live in Maryland with my husband, two cats, and tiny parrot. Nachos are my kryptonite.

I learned to crochet before I learned to knit, which is how plant yarns first wooed me. Crocheters love a good cotton yarn! I've made it my mission to explore a variety of rich, earthy, and wearable colors with Terrapin Fiberworks. We're here to make beautiful things and try our best to take care of the earth and those living on it as we go.

I'd like to acknowledge and thank the Piscataway, Nacotchtank, and Susquehannock peoples on whose traditional, unceded and stolen territories I live & work to create our yarns.

Below are some of the most common questions we receive about our yarn and order policies. If your question isn't answered here, please feel free to get in touch via the contact form at the bottom!

FAQs

What Can I Make with Plant Yarn?

Anything! (Yes, really!) Plant yarns do not behave exactly like wool, but we find them incredibly versatile. The main things to keep in mind is that most plant yarns (except our Anacostia sock base) will not have memory, or "bounce," in the same way that wool and acrylics do. They can require a little more patience on the needles or hook, but will pay you back by never felting, never itching, and tumbling safely through the washing machine. Plant yarns transform into wonderful, truly everyday wardrobe pieces and we are in love with their possibilities!

Whether you're interested in shawls, hats, socks, colorwork, or sweaters, we have a base that will be suited to your project. Check out our bases page to see what yarns we recommend for which projects! You can also see what our customers have been making recently by browsing our Ravelry page.

How Are Your Yarns Sustainable?

All our fibers are free of animal products and suitable for vegan crafters or those with animal fiber sensitivities. We select our bases with sustainability first in mind, opting for fibers with reduced impact on the planet compared to the average plant yarn. We also repurpose water in our dye process as much as possible to reduce our water usage.

Our yarn ships with minimal 100% plastic-free materials using primarily recycled paper products. All our shipping materials are recyclable, reusable, or compostable, so we encourage you not to trash them!  For larger or international orders, you may see plastic from time to time, as we repurpose shipping materials from our suppliers for these shipments.

We encourage you to read more about our bases here!

How Should I Care For My Finished Objects?

Plant yarns are a little easier to care for than wool yarns, because they cannot felt and will tolerate a cold water/delicates cycle in the washing machine. (This makes them great for gifting to non-knitters!) That said, for best longevity of colors and fibers, we recommend hand-washing our yarns in cold water with a gentle detergent and laying flat to dry.

Plant yarns are dyed with a fiber reactive dye, meaning the dye chemically bonds to the fiber--it is permanent! While we thoroughly set and wash our yarns, due to differences in water and soaps, plant fibers can release a little color on the first few rinses (particularly dark, red, or blue colors). Think of them like dark wash jeans and plan accordingly -- we recommend a prewash if you plan to mix colors in your project.

To prewash, unwind your hank and soak in cool water and detergent as you would for the finished project. Cold water and detergent are strongly recommended for any wash thereafter. If you're combining a darker color with a lighter color, we recommend putting a Shout color catcher sheet in your rinse water for the finished project. 

How Do I Buy Your Yarn?

We sell our yarn primarily through this website! We are a very small studio, so  we dye most of our yarn to order. This allows us to offer the best selection of colors and bases. Our fulfillment time for dyed to order yarn is 4-6 weeks maximum.

Periodically we offer themed preorder collections of limited edition colorways. These yarns are one-time offerings that will be available for about 5-7 days on our website, and have an extended fulfillment time of 8-10 weeks maximum. We reintroduce the favorites from these collections on a quarterly basis as standard dyed to order offerings, but there is no guarantee any one specific color will return! The best way to hear about these preorders is to subscribe to our newsletter.

If you just can't wait, we also have a small in-stock selection of some colors and bases. These yarns are ready to ship! If you're looking for a great deal, you can also browse our bargain shelf yarns (typically discontinued, trial skeins, or seconds).

Do You Have a Storefront?

No, unfortunately! Our studio space in Annapolis is a workspace only. If you'd like to see our yarn in person, you can check out our Calendar to see what fiber fairs and trunk shows we'll be visiting next.

Where Else Can I Find You Online?

Through our newsletter, Instagram, Facebook, and TikTok! Our newsletter is the best way to hear about new yarn collections and subscriber-only discounts. You can subscribe at the link at the bottom of this page! We go into more depth about our upcoming colorways and patterns on our Instagram page, so be sure to follow us there.

Do You Have An Anti-Fat Tax Discount?

Yes, we do! Larger bodies need more yarn for sweaters, and we want to reduce the "fat tax" cost by offering a sweater quantity discount. Simply apply the relevant code at checkout:

ANTIFATTAX6: 10% off your order

ANTIFATTAX8: 15% off your order

This discount is valid for any base or combination of colors.

We are offering this discount on the honor system;. It is intended for use by fat makers who need yarn for a single project. We are excited to do our part to increase accessibility in our community, but we sadly cannot afford to discount every large order. Please apply these discounts solely in the nature they are intended!

Do You Take Custom Orders?

Unfortunately we do not take orders for custom colorways at this time.

Do You Offer Yarn Support?

We're always looking for opportunities to spread the plant yarn love! If you're a designer with an upcoming pattern, get in touch via the form below to discuss your project.

Who Are You Donating To This Quarter?

10% of profits are donated each quarter to a different charity -- we gravitate to organizations that support immigration reform, equal access to food, housing, and employment, and sustainability. For April-June 2024, we are supporting RAICES Texas.