Local Yarn from Happy Sheep | Grown, Spun & Dyed in Central Germany

Journal

introducing... the faces behind r&s yarn!

Recently I’ve gotten quite a few question (mostly via IG) on exactly who I’m talking about when I say we. A little background: when sharing on IG and here on our website, I sometimes write from solely my own perspective, but I often share about things we’ve been working on as a team. We’re not a large business with multiple employees but I also don’t run everything here at r&s alone. Far from it! In many ways it’s taken my entire support network to help bring these yarns to being. But there are a few official members of our team who work very hard and fill very specific roles and today I thought it might be a good idea to introduce them to you a little more. Before we start, in the interest of full transparency I want to quickly add that I am currently the only team member who receives any sort of consistent financial compensation for my work with r&s. Currently (as of January 2019) I am able to pay myself a very modest monthly salary for the work I put in here. This is a privilege that I don’t take lightly. For over a year I poured hours into this business without financial compensation and I did it more than willingly. However, things got to a point where it was no longer possible for me to spend the time I need to on this business without receiving any financial compensation to contribute to my family and household. Since starting r&s yarn I’ve had to fit it in between having a toddler at home full time (something that’s changed as of this month! ) as well as working a day job, either as a freelancer or otherwise (which is something I don’t currently have any plans to change). In some ways, paying myself monthly was a hard decision to make- party due to some feelings of imposter syndrome but mainly because we aren’t at a point where we can financially compensate all our team members yet. We’re hard at work moving in that direction and we hope to be at a point by the end of this year where we can financially compensate both myself and Marten a fair amount for the work we put in here. We’ve got a little ways to go though and will hopefully be able to share more of our process with you along the way. Of course if you have any questions about any of this please don’t hesitate to reach out.

So without further ado, here are the current members of the r&s team!

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Ruth

That’s me! Here at r&s it’s mostly my voice you hear via our IG, newsletters and emails. I’m currently responsible for all things day to day running of our shop, shipping and website maintenance as well as our marketing, branding, creative development and collaborations. I started this company partly by accident but I run it with so much heart and intention. My hope is that we can keep producing yarn with a story and building a strong and diverse community of knitters and makers to support it.

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Marty

Marty is the co-founder of r&s. A little about himself in his own words: My name is Marten, and here at Raincloud & Sage I'm responsible for communications with our shepherds and mill, as well as our finances. I have a joint degree in economics, politics and law and live with my wife and two year old son in Bremen, Germany. My hope with r&s is that we can offer more people the opportunity to knit with yarn of a traceable origin that has been sourced sustainably and regionally. I'd love to see wool, which is a rather natural and simple product at heart, become less of a cheap and mass-produced product in our industries. Through this, shepherds could be paid a fair price for their product, and we'd cut down on global transportation which would in turn benefit our environment and contribute positively to climate change.

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Waldi

Although Waldi has of course been around for the entire process of starting our company, he’s recently taken on a more concrete role here at r&s yarn. Currently he does a lot of networking and business development for us, as well as some day to day shipping logistics and a bit of bookkeeping. Waldi is completing his Masters Degree in Economic Geography, with a focus in Social Business practices and his insight has been so helpful for us as we scale our business and look to the future for where we’re heading with r&s yarn. In joining our team Waldi really hopes to help us develop in a more sustainable way- for ourselves, our planet and our community and customers. (For those of you who don’t know, Waldi is also my husband)

We also work with several makers and creatives on a recurring basis who help us mostly with our creative branding. Our “in house” (albeit globally located) photographer is Finlay Burrage, and he’s responsible for all the professional photography (and videography!) you see here on our website and Instagram (again, as a disclaimer: we pay Finlay for his work and have done since the beginning of our collaboration). We’ve also worked with illustrator Simone Wellbrock to create some of our graphics and branding materials and on some external design related projects such as the Betty’s Sweater Collection from which she also receives a portion of the proceeds.

And that’s basically it. Of course as I mentioned there are so many others who have supported us along the way and if you’re curious I wrote more in depth about that here. As I said above, please do reach out should you have any questions! We’d love to chat further with you about any of this.