Life has changed in many ways since I last wrote to you.

The work of 8 years of my life materialized in book form on March 17, 2020. Since then I have been mailing out several books each day and enjoying the feedback I’m receiving. Yet there is the other major life change we’ve all been experiencing together–the new reality of living with the threat and the challenging consequences of COVID-19. We are all in this together.

My situation is I live at home in Maryland with my husband (he’s recently retired) and dog (she is not retired). My daily life has been–and still is–focused on what comes in on my computer (emails & orders) and following through with answering requests in my studio which is located right behind my house.  I am working quite full time while social distancing. I miss getting together with my friends for dinners and happy hours.

I have been giving a lot of thought on what I can do, how I can best spend my time to be of service to people who are also staying home and looking for meaningful things to do. A few things come to mind. I have supplies in abundance which you can view on my website here or look in my Etsy Shop which is more complete.  I have dozens of kits ready-to-go or could be ready-to-go in a day or two.  The best way to see what is on-hand at my studio is to look at the “Rya Kits in my Etsy Shop.”  The other way is to look at the Rauma Rya catalogs list here on my website in the Shop under Rya Kits in files listed in brown lettering.  I don’t have them all, but I have many which I have not yet listed on Etsy, so just ask me if I have one that interests you.  And of course if you don’t already have the NEW rya book, I think you might get hours of learning and creative stimulation from it. I’m caught up on the order onslaught, so now I can send the book to you same day you order. Due to the disparity between cheap Media Mail postage in the USA and quite a bit higher rates to Europe, I have posted a second listing for the book on Etsy just for International order for the Book. (As inexpensive as possible.)

And finally, if it is information you need, information I can help you if you are stuck on a project. If any of you have a rya project that you stopped working on because you forgot how to do it, you ran out of a color, lost the graph, whatever–I can probably help you. Wouldn’t completing a nearly forgotten rya be a productive outcome of our stay-at-home time? Or starting on your first kit, or designing your own for the very first (or 10th) time. I am here for you.


Another thing you might enjoy is the Facebook Group off my Byrdcall Studio page called Rya Rug Friends. We have about 223 members from USA and around the world who share rya projects, designs, experiences, some really useful and interesting stuff. It will help you feel connected to a nice group of friends you haven’t met yet, but you may have a lot in common with them. Why not join today if this sounds interesting? It is a peaceful, kind, and positive group focused on traditional rya rug making.

T-Shirt Tuesdays:  Just for fun (plus it makes me feel happy), I have been giving away a free T-shirt of my Byrdcall designs every Tuesday evening. You can look at all the T-shirts I have available in my Etsy Shop. Pick one that is listed in the drop-down menu next to the photographs.  Then on my Byrdcall Studio Facebook page, tell me what design, color, size, a Ladies-or-Men’s style shirt you want. I will draw one name each Tuesday then mail the shirt free of charge to the winner. (USA mailings only please). If you don’t win, your name stays in “the hat” for the future drawings. I welcome any and all to participate–most importantly you have to choose a shirt that exists now because I am not printing more at this time. These shirts are also available for purchase, but wouldn’t it be more fun to win one? So far, congratulations to:  Libby Monaghan and Judy Rhoades!

Finally, I will be placing my order for Rauma Norwegian supplies on Friday (4/24/20) for a late May delivery (probably). if you have a particular rya kit in mind, let me know soon so I can add it to my order list if I don’t already have it.

Stay safe and healthy. Be happy with the joys in life that already surround you.

Cheers, Melinda

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