Inside a small boutique called The End, in the arid desert of Old Town Yucca Valley, CA, we stumbled upon some hats that beckoned to be touched and held. The hats are knitted by Taylor Elyse Compton, a Joshua Tree resident, who has a small studio called Rustic Threads. Compton sources 100% merino wool—softer and lighter than other wools, and without the itchiness—from Ohio, which she then spins, dyes and knits herself. “I have never lived in a place like this before,” Compton tells CH. “It’s hard not to be inspired by the vast scenery. The mountains are huge, and skies are endless with the most vivd sunsets promised every evening. Joshua Tree is a one-of-a-kind place, and it keeps me making one-of-a-kind work.” It’s also a place where temperatures can drop to freezing during the winter, putting the hats to good use.
Having been knitting for around four years, and dyeing and spinning for two, Compton says, “My products are an investment and I want each piece to last a lifetime; that’s why I choose to use merino,” noting that “it’s soft, light, warm and durable.” Her newest pieces, which have been added to her online shop today, are beanies dipped in different natural dyes like indigo, madder, turmeric.
Rustic Thread offers made-to-order hats, as well as vests, scarves, dreamcatchers and more—all can be found online and at a few boutiques in the area including
Heyoka Hideout, In Heroes We Trust and The End.
Images courtesy of Rustic Threads Studio