Making Podcast Woolful Podcast

Episode 79: Jessica Lewis Stevens – Librarianship, Natural Dyeing, Homesteading, and Sugarhouse Workshop

May 18, 2017

Sponsor: The Sated Sheep opened in February of 2015 in Dripping Springs Texas by Allison Wilcox. After practicing as a clinical psychologist for 30 years, Allison began looking to do something focus on being a part of and building community, which led her to open The Sated Sheep. Allison shares, “I really believe that you change the world one moment and one soul at a time, and that a big part of that is education. I spend a lot of time just talking with folks who come in about where the yarns come from, how they are made, what the story is behind the person/company who made them etc. That’s super important to me personally and I try, as much as I can, to have that reflected in the choices I make in the shop.” The Sated Sheep is passionate about making craft accessible to everyone and they’ve partnered with the local library to offer free classes twice a month.

So if you’re in the Austin or Dripping Springs Texas area or just passing through, make sure to seek out The Sated Sheep. Stop in for coffee or tea beer or wine, and try some of their homemade raw dark chocolates, relax during the Tuesday evening happy hour, join one of their exciting classes or peruse the shop. Mark your calendar because on Mondays, a local massage therapist takes over the shop and one can book a massage for themselves or bring friends to sit and knit or crochet and take turns getting a massage and receive 10% off in the shop. You can find The Sated Sheep at and on Instagram @thesatedsheep


Fiber folk: I’ve long admired Jessica and her work, for her simplistic approach to natural dyeing, love of books, tempting baked goods and warm and welcoming heart for this fiber community. She has a very interesting background, having first delved into natural dyeing while studying librarianship in graduate school and it’s led her all the way to making a home in Vermont along with her husband and two adorable sons. I hope you enjoy hearing her story as much as I have and getting to know this inspiring woman. You can find Jessica at and on Instagram @sugarhouseworkshop.


Sponsor: Scratch is an innovative new yarn and craft supply shop located in Lebanon, New Hampshire. They’re committed to providing a beautifully curated selection of yarns and supplies for knitters, as well as roving, tools, and kits for needle felters. Their shop also features embroidery, sewing, and select fine art supplies. Scratch operates with the guiding notion that makers are curious and creative, and  should be able to find exciting, high quality materials to work with all in one place.

Scratch is also home to the areas only handcraft focused makerspace–home to a sewing bar, multiple looms, common workspace, a tool library, and more! Explore their full schedule of classes, and weekly Craft Night focused on building the creative community in the Upper Valley.

You can find Scratch online at, and on Facebook & Instagram: @scratchmakerspace

Giveaway: The winner of last weeks episode giveaway is Nancy. You’ve won a skein of their Alpaca handspun worsted weight yarn from Your Daily Dose of Fiber. Congratulations!

This week’s giveaway is sponsored by Making Magazine and to celebrate the launch of their most recent issue, No. 3 DOTS,  they’re giving away a copy along with a yard of Robert Kaufman’s double gauze chambray dobby fabric to make the Starry Sky Skirt by Rae Hoekstra. This issue also features today’s guest along with many other makers, projects and patterns. To enter leave a comment on this post.

Music by Jónsi.

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  • Reply Gaby May 18, 2017 at 4:02 am

    Beautiful give away, thank you.

  • Reply Ariel May 18, 2017 at 5:40 am

    I loved learning more about Jessica and her journey, that seems so parallel to my own in some ways but so different in others. I also started out with a deep love of books, print and book arts. I wanted to be a librarian but got involved with digital/ information management instead. My family’s life is now fundamentally tied to being in an urban area, but I love listening in on how others’ choices have taken them down a different path.

  • Reply virginia Sattler-Reimer May 18, 2017 at 5:43 am

    The colors! So gorgeous!

  • Reply Natalie May 18, 2017 at 6:02 am

    What beautiful photos and beautiful natural colors. Great episode, as always!

  • Reply Sheeps and Peeps Farm May 18, 2017 at 7:50 am

    Beautiful episode and photos!

  • Reply Amy May 18, 2017 at 8:04 am

    A great pick me up for a hum drum kind of day. Thanks!

  • Reply Arianne May 18, 2017 at 8:55 am

    I would love to make that skirt! Great giveaway. I love this podcast. I swooned over her instagram feed. What a treasured soul.

  • Reply Bridget May 18, 2017 at 10:04 am

    You always share the prettiest things. 🙂

  • Reply Jess May 18, 2017 at 11:17 am

    Can’t wait to listen, I love Jessica’s dyeing and quilting work, and am so intrigued by the new issue of making!

  • Reply Jennifer May 18, 2017 at 11:50 am

    Can’t wait to listen to this episode as I am getting more into natural dyeing lately. And I love Making mag!

  • Reply Tonya Gunn May 18, 2017 at 12:13 pm

    I am so excited about this episode. Jessica’s work is so inspiring and winning the newest issue of Making would be such a treat.

  • Reply ulla fredriksson May 18, 2017 at 12:29 pm

    It would be great to be a winner of a copy of Making,a magazine I’v not been able to get here in Sweden.I’m following your blog and I really enjoy it.

  • Reply Tatiana Sarasa May 18, 2017 at 1:06 pm

    This episode was one of my favorites. So inspiring and beautiful in such a natural way. Thank you!

  • Reply Patricia May 18, 2017 at 1:58 pm

    This show gave me a sense of hope and encouragement that the younger generations care deeply about the Earth. The episode also made me want to dabble in natural dyeing, especially when Jessica spoke how different heat sources resulted in different colors. Thank you.

  • Reply Kelley May 18, 2017 at 5:07 pm

    Jessica’s work is just beautiful! I loved listening to her journey.

  • Reply Kristin May 18, 2017 at 7:09 pm

    This was a very inspiring episode, and I love the pictures! Her home looks so cozy. Thanks for the giveaway!

  • Reply Dorothy May 19, 2017 at 4:06 am

    Inspiring ❤ I was just introduced to natural dyes and everything that was mentioned on this podcast just struck a chord with me. ❤ your work

  • Reply Teresa May 19, 2017 at 8:17 am

    This episode left me longing for a more intentional lifestyle. Thank you.

  • Reply Sherry May 19, 2017 at 8:25 am

    Wonderful entertaining inspiring episode.

  • Reply Maaike May 19, 2017 at 9:15 am

    Great episode! love to participate in the beautiful making zine give away!

  • Reply Emily May 19, 2017 at 11:58 am

    I really enjoyed listening to this episode! Jessica talked about a linen source that she really liked…does anyone know the name? Thank you!

  • Reply Gerri Lesley May 19, 2017 at 12:55 pm

    So very interesting! I, too, have learned most of my making through books! The hand dyed fabric is very lovely!

  • Reply Josh B. May 19, 2017 at 1:11 pm

    Yet another great episode! This one really makes me wish I could just get away from it all and start homesteading myself. I love how you show more than just knitting in your episodes, but go from sheep to shirt, as my wife likes to say. =)

  • Reply Rikke May 19, 2017 at 2:22 pm

    So exited for this episode

  • Reply Rebecca Bandy May 19, 2017 at 3:07 pm

    Looking forward to this cast. Natural dyeing is so fascinating! Thanks for the intro to Jessica.

  • Reply Tamara Snell May 19, 2017 at 3:12 pm

    Thanks for this great giveaway! I’m keen to have the newest Making magazine, Dots. Also, I really enjoyed listening to the podcast and listening to Jessica talk about her passions, homestead and family life–really interesting and very inspiring. Thanks again

  • Reply Monica May 19, 2017 at 4:42 pm

    Loved this show!

  • Reply Laura S May 19, 2017 at 4:48 pm

    Beautiful, beautiful!! I am in love with all of these colors, they just bring out such wonderfully warm and earthy hues!!

  • Reply Carolyn May 19, 2017 at 5:52 pm

    Always so inspired by Jessica’s work!

  • Reply Karen Doherty May 19, 2017 at 6:51 pm

    I can’t wait to listen to this!!!

  • Reply Karen May 19, 2017 at 7:59 pm

    Jessica, I admire your focus on what is important to you and your family.

  • Reply Doreen MacL May 20, 2017 at 1:31 am

    Interesting as always and I love all the photos. Must check out that skirt pattern.,
    Thanks for the giveaway chance!

  • Reply Kim May 20, 2017 at 3:47 am

    Enjoyable and inspiring as always, thank you

  • Reply Francesca May 20, 2017 at 3:49 am

    Beautiful colors, lovely dots! Such indigo dreams.

  • Reply Patty May 20, 2017 at 6:40 am

    I loved this podcast. I hope she plants her flax, spins it, weaves it, dyes it and the makes the most fabulous quilt. I look forward to following her progress with this. Oh and the baking she shares looks so perfect. Thanks for spreading the love on making with so many people.

  • Reply Susan May 20, 2017 at 7:38 am

    I too am interested in learning all steps in the process of making a piece of cloth, particularly growing flax amd processing it into linen. Love the aesthetic Jessica creates with her naturally dyed fabrics.

  • Reply Judith B May 20, 2017 at 7:48 am

    As I listen and cleaned my bathroom – yes was going to make it fun – I thought about how I use to be so uniformed and scheduled before children. I wish more parents would take on this attitude and learn that the house does not have to be clean to perfection.
    It makes such a difference for your children/family to spend quality time with together. I learn so much from your episodes. Thanks again

  • Reply Diane May 20, 2017 at 9:18 am

    Great episode as always! Jessica’s instagram feed is equal parts peaceful and inspiring.

  • Reply Corinne May 20, 2017 at 1:29 pm

    I just really enjoyed this…so good to hear the voice behind one of my very favorite instagrams!
    I really love everything Jessica does and am always perusing through her feed. I looked up
    Grandma Moses and her artwork and it is truly inspirational and so very Vermont!!!!
    I love it that you shared your love for the ‘old ways’. I love all your crafts and look forward to
    future homemaking inspiration from you! I always look forward to your photos!!!!!

  • Reply Jennifer May 20, 2017 at 4:14 pm

    I would love to win an issue of Making magazine. The cover alone on this issue is inspiring.

  • Reply LEANNE GODDARD May 20, 2017 at 4:14 pm

    Natural dyeing is fascinating to me. Loved hearing about her journey, family and making.

  • Reply Kate May 20, 2017 at 7:35 pm

    I loved hearing about her homemaking. I feel like many people don’t appreciate that homemaking is an art.

  • Reply Rose Young May 20, 2017 at 8:15 pm

    Another amazing podcast! Thanks for all you do! 🙂

  • Reply AL May 21, 2017 at 7:38 am

    great , cosy and luminous episode! thank you very much. AL

  • Reply Bowen Gibson May 21, 2017 at 8:24 am

    I love the discussion on balance with kids. It’s a daily issue that I struggle with and it’s always great to hear others approach it.

  • Reply Abby Rosario May 21, 2017 at 12:51 pm

    Great episode! My first comment. Keep doing what you do. Hope I win Making & gifts. What a wonderful giveaway.

  • Reply Vicki May 21, 2017 at 3:45 pm

    It was a lovely listen today. I loved hearing about how the guest approaches new projects trying to create more for her family and home. The Sated Sheep!!! It’s my local shop. I’ve lived in Dripping for 25 years and was so excited to get a lovely local yarn shop.

  • Reply Sindy P May 22, 2017 at 3:25 am

    Such an amazing interview, especially when Jessica said she learned to knit because of what she heard on one of your previous episodes! Warms my heart to listen to these stories how we can influence people without realizing it.

  • Reply Caitlin May 22, 2017 at 5:52 am

    Loved it!

  • Reply Jess Saven May 22, 2017 at 8:50 am

    Lovely idea for a give-away!

  • Reply Anna May 22, 2017 at 10:33 am

    What a wonderful interview!!! I’ve loved Jessica’s work for a while now and it was so fun to hear more about her fiber choices and how they fit into her family life.

  • Reply Jennifer dewey May 22, 2017 at 8:44 pm

    Thank you for this episode! It was very special because I too am a librarian, fibre enthusiast, knitter, quilter – mama!

  • Reply Wendy May 23, 2017 at 5:38 am

    This podcast has to be one of my favorites. My children are grown now but I so wish I could have heard this when they were 1 and 4 years old. I remember having the same mindset of feeling like I had to get things done but at the same time wanted to just be with them and savor the time because they grow up so fast. I loved hearing about the “project time” you set aside with Coltrane and how he misses it. Thank you for sharing.

  • Reply Lianne Scott May 23, 2017 at 3:44 pm

    Excellent and inspiring as always! I have just started working in an office for the first time (after 12 years of working outside) and listening to your podcast during the day is amazing, and helps me focus and get inspired for after work crafting. I am slowly working my way through the archives.

  • Reply Barb May 24, 2017 at 4:42 am

    Enjoyed the podcast as always.

  • Reply Stephanie D May 24, 2017 at 5:28 am

    Books and handmade everything? Amazing!

  • Reply Cathy B May 24, 2017 at 7:31 am

    Another great episode. Thank you.

  • Reply Sue May 24, 2017 at 10:01 am

    Great episode! I cannot wait to explore Jessica’s website and Instagram link. Thank you!

  • Reply Kezia May 24, 2017 at 11:24 am

    As a mom of nearly adult children, let me encourage you to enjoy your time with your young ones! It changes so much, and you will have enough time for yourselves before you know it. Thanks for the lovely conversation!

  • Reply Janet May 24, 2017 at 11:33 am

    Enjoyed your interview , thank you.

  • Reply Sarah DeBree May 24, 2017 at 12:58 pm

    This was a lovely podcast!! I really admire you ladies and hope my daughter who has started a very nice flock of sheep will move toward a nice little business. I just knitted a hat from her first successful sheering of her Jacob sheep. I sent it off to be processed into worsted weight and it came back better than I could have imagined!! Good luck to all the entries!

  • Reply Fran May 24, 2017 at 1:21 pm

    I’m always so happy to find a new Woolful podcast to listen to (these days, I save them up for when I need a boost in the middle of night when nursing our little one back to sleep….). This week’s epsiode felt like an extra special treat because I have admired Jessica’s work with quilts & natural dyes from afar for a few years now and it was lovely to hear the voice behind the beautiful images & thoughtful words. As ever, it was a lovely conversation & your podcast brought a bit of cheer to an otherwise long night! Many thanks, Fran

  • Reply Katrina May 24, 2017 at 1:35 pm

    Loved hearing Jessica’s interview! Her work on handcrafted books sounds simply amazing – what a treasure to create.

  • Reply Liz May 24, 2017 at 1:40 pm

    I was so excited to see The Sated Sheep as a sponsor!
    They are my second closest LYS and a make a lovely afternoon in Dripping when paired with Thyme and Dough for a snack.

  • Reply Katie May 24, 2017 at 7:56 pm

    I love this episode so much. You both are so wonderfully inspiring.

  • Reply Paola May 25, 2017 at 1:27 am

    Thank you both for an inspiring conversation on how to do craft, motherhood, and community.

  • Reply Agnes May 25, 2017 at 3:42 pm

    Wonderful episode as always! Thank you

  • Reply Carrie May 26, 2017 at 6:04 am

    Loved listening to this episode. Brought me back to when my own children were young and made me ever the more impressed by both of your talents and all of your energy. Lovely episode.

  • Reply Joan Miller May 26, 2017 at 8:58 am

    I’m a new listener and would love to win this giveaway.

  • Reply Rhonda May 26, 2017 at 10:37 am

    I’m loving your podcast and it is helping me discover makers and maker spaces in my area. Thanks!

  • Reply Nadia Létourneau May 28, 2017 at 4:36 am

    What for a nice style of life Jessica have. She’s very inspiring!

  • Reply Judy N May 28, 2017 at 5:31 am

    Thank you for another interesting podcast. I love hearing about new-to-me makers.

  • Reply pistachios May 28, 2017 at 8:56 am

    Thanks again for your wonderful podcast!

  • Reply Jen Gardiner May 28, 2017 at 5:34 pm

    I’ve listened to this episode 3 times so far. Thanks so much for introducing me to Jessica. She is truly amazing!

  • Reply ulla fredriksson May 29, 2017 at 12:33 am

    And so nice to follow the Gentle knitter on youtube where she also is talking about your podcast and the lovely yarn she is using for the shawl pattern.And she also talked about the latest Making Magazine.Both of you are my favourites.

  • Reply Sonja Loyd May 29, 2017 at 8:29 am

    Incorporating handcrafting in our lives,is soulful,at any age. Jessica is amazing! Beautiful handwork,fiber ,homesteading, Librarian? I love it! The patience and time that goes into it. Raising a family and all these wonderful skills is passed down to her little ones and so encouraging for others. Thank you Jessica for a beautiful journey.

  • Reply Mandy May 29, 2017 at 1:26 pm

    I’m especially interested in natural dyeing these days! Thank you for another thoughtful and inspiring podcast.

  • Reply Vlasta Cadieu May 29, 2017 at 5:09 pm

    Really enjoyed listening to your podcast.

  • Reply Brenda May 29, 2017 at 6:41 pm

    I loved hearing about Jessica’s life – so inspiring! I am just beginning my natural dye journey – with avocados!

    Wonderful podcast Ashley – love the simplicity.

  • Reply Elysia May 30, 2017 at 1:48 am

    Thanks for offering the lovely giveaway! Listening for the first time, I like it and looking forward to listen more 🙂

  • Reply Beth May 30, 2017 at 4:18 am

    The double gauze is so pretty and Rae is such an inspiration.

  • Reply Yasmin May 31, 2017 at 8:57 pm

    Beautiful interview, it was a joy to listen. I always come away from these inspired!

  • Reply Susanne June 1, 2017 at 2:58 am

    Thanks you the inspiring interview with Jessica.
    This was the first episode of the woolful podcast I listened, but certainly not the last. I love knitting and spinning, and like tot listen tot other peoples view on these crafts.

  • Reply Sue H. June 2, 2017 at 4:53 am

    Another great episode. It was interesting to learn about Jessica’s transition of professional and personal interests, and the influence of book arts in her current work.

  • Reply Susan Seward June 2, 2017 at 9:52 am

    Lovely lovely. Thank you!

  • Reply Jodi Guerin June 2, 2017 at 4:22 pm

    I love your podcasts. I am definitely going to look into the new magazine!

  • Reply Bri June 4, 2017 at 9:56 am

    What a lovely episode! I have been thinking about naturally dying for a long time, and I have also dreamed of quilting, but I had no thought of combining the two! How inspiring!

  • Reply Alyssa June 4, 2017 at 11:46 am

    thanks for this episode! I really enjoyed it!
    one thing that really resonated with me was at the end when she talked about wanted to be involved in every stage of the process- growing dye plants and even flax to make linen, making her own cloth, spinning her own yarn.. it all sounds really inspiring. i understand the desire to immerse yourself that deeply in fiber… I keep dreaming of life on a farm but I’m such a city girl! Hopefully I can find a way to blend the two lifestyles a little bit more..

  • Reply Sophie bertolotti June 5, 2017 at 1:58 am

    I was very late in my woolful podcast listening and as always a joy to listen, while taking time to simply knit after several days without knitting! Of course very interested in the natural dyeing and wanting to be involved from plant or sheep to final fiber product!

  • Reply Erin June 7, 2017 at 12:53 am

    I’ve been waiting a month to get the chance to finally catch this episode, and it did not disappoint! I love Jessica’s work, and it was lovely to hear her perspective on motherhood and craft and digging deeper into the more “analog” ways of life. You both are so inspiring!

  • Reply Shannon Yeaton June 7, 2017 at 7:58 am

    Lovely show, always interested in dyeing, especially naturally. Thanks for an inspiring episode as usual!

  • Reply Andrea June 7, 2017 at 8:43 am

    Such a wonderful interview of Jessica! So inspiring.

  • Reply Marianne June 7, 2017 at 4:28 pm

    So interesting to hear about Jessica’s journey in natural dyeing and quilting!

  • Reply Patti Bottoni June 10, 2017 at 4:51 pm

    I always enjoy the people you interview for your audio podcast and this one was another really interesting person 🙂 I especially liked hearing about how Queen Anne’s Lace can be used for natural dying–and it’s everywhere !

  • Reply Rachel Palfini June 12, 2017 at 6:54 pm

    It has been awhile since I listened to an episode and am so glad I came back. Inspiring as always. 🙂

  • Reply Debbie G (Fiberfriend) June 12, 2017 at 8:45 pm

    Wow… What an inspiration Jessica is to me… I have alpacas and I already spin their fiber to make yarn but I’ve always wanted to know more about the naturaIy dye it. I grow my own Japanese indigo and I don’t even know how to use it so she has given me a kick in the butt to get moving ,..LOL
    Love love love this podcast and Thank you SO much for this sweet giveaway ❤️

  • Reply asteride June 14, 2017 at 8:05 am

    Thank you for another beautiful episode!

  • Reply Lulu June 14, 2017 at 8:06 am

    I’m a fan of Making Magazine, it is so inspiring! Great giveaway!

  • Reply Gail Sakurada June 14, 2017 at 8:38 am

    I always enjoy your interviews. They are so thought provoking and inspiring. I envy Jessica’s inspired life.

  • Reply Gea June 15, 2017 at 3:30 am

    Late to the party! Love the Making magazine and the inspiring pics of your blog. Sometimes I browse old posts just to find inspiration for what I’m going to create next.

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