Vale Marta

Alas, no g'day today!

How many of you had the pleasure of visiting Marta's Yarns in Malvern East? (I still call it Caulfield cos that is the station across the road.) How many of you gazed in wonder at how much could be crammed into a little shop? How much colour? How much inspiration? It was truly an Aladdin's Cave. Then there was Marta, always enthused about colour and helping with great ideas and dyeing some luscious yarn up....

(A bag of Marta's rainbow mohair, a gift from Peeve two birthdays ago)

Well, alas, Marta is no more. Her shop had been closed since October or so due to illness. I wish I had known she had cancer. The clues were there. The tiredness, the sadness, the knowledge she had too much yarn and not enough time to dye it, the occasional absences, the puffiness of her face sometimes, even her marvellous wild multicoloured hair suddenly became neatly coiffed, though still an unnatural auburn. I just thought it was a passing thing, maybe depression associated with menopause because my Mum said many of the same things, though Mum's hair never became neatly coiffed suddenly. That was the give away - the hair. Why would wild multicoloured locks become heavy, one-coloured, sleek tresses?

(My first wheel - an old Ashford Traditional)

I wish I had gotten to know you better, Marta. You found me my first spinning wheel and I showed you my first ratty skeins. I have gotten better. I wish you could get better. I bought small balls of your yarn, all I could afford at the time, and treasured your thin and thin multicoloured yarn.

I dyed up some more yarn today. I think you would approve of it. I think I will call the colourway "Marta" because it will always remind me of you.

Like all those whose lives you touched, I will miss you. My sympathies go to your family - their loss is immeasurable.

RIP Marta Cantos.


  1. It's a sad day - I stopped by Marta's when I was in Victoria last, but the shop had already been closed indefinately. Thanks for telling us what happened to Marta - it can't have been easy to type up that post.

  2. I'm sorry to hear about Marta. She sounded like an amazing person.

  3. I'm sorry. It is always heartbreaking when a creative, kind person is taken from the world. It sounds like she fit that description perfectly.

  4. wow - she was a great lady. She displayed one of my bags in her shop a couple of years ago.


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