Hair Bows & Bow Ties

I finally got around to trying this nifty little pattern back in March (was it really that long ago?), whipping up quite a few more than I intended, and I’m ecstatic to introduce it in the Etsy shop!

Add a bow to any hat or headband in the shot

I think this pattern was originally intended to be a little girl’s hair bow but I have been on a quest to find cute *boy* clothes & accessories before EJ was born.  Using my grandfather and his adorable bow ties as inspiration, I think these would make wonderful bow ties for a little boy!  What do you think??

I haven’t figured out how to safely (i.e. not a choking hazard) attach these around a little neck, but I’m open to suggestions.  In the mean time, I’m also selling these under supplies.

I plan to add many more colors soon; I just had this baby blue skein to use up.  What are you working on today?

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Review of Merchant’s Landing Show

Well, our little adorable bundle of joy, little miss EJ, came into the world just days before the weekend show so I was not personally able to attend to my table, but my wonderful sister and amazing husband were willing to step in and represent Knitted Home.  My review stems from what they have told me and my interpretations of those observations.

Photo courtesy of my sister & her iPhone

According to sources, there were plenty of vendors (around 90 was the estimation) in attendance but the overall customer crowd was definitely lacking.  The show ran from 11-6pm (set up starting at 8am; my husband & sister were able to set up the table in 30-60 minutes) and the last hour or more was only vendors shopping other vendors.

The coordinators did a great job spreading like-crafters across the venue (this is something I’ve seen lacking at other shows) as well as spreading promotion across different media outlets (fb, radio stations, word of mouth, newspaper, etc).

Photo courtesy of my sister & her iPhone

Overall, it seems April is not a month for Knitted Home to do physical shows because the weather will always attract people outside and away from craft shows (though that didn’t seem to be the case with the Maker’s Mart I attended the weekend after – one of EJ’s first outings).  Or maybe it is the nature of my products that is out of season by April (surely not baby accessories, though?)  At least we made our table fee so I wouldn’t judge this show a “failure” but I can’t say it will be one to do in the future.

Is there a favorite show you are in every year?  What makes it your favorite?

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Merchants Landing Arts & Craft Show

I’m so excited that I have another show on the calendar!

These ladies participated with me at the Make It Indie fair back in November and reached out to me to join them in their first annual show this April.  I have to say I was definitely honored that they reached out to me and were patient as I searched my mind for an answer.  Of course I wanted to scream yes right away, but knowing that the show weekend (April 12 & 13) is the weekend after my due date, I had to consider newborn care first.  After talking with my midwife, husband (who was supportively pushing me in this direction), and a few other friends with kids, I decided to go with the “ambitious” decision to commit.  And now I’m so excited & ecstatic that I did!

So if everyone will just send positive, slightly early-labor thoughts my way, I’d really appreciate it! hehe.  πŸ™‚

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Soap Savers

You may have seen me mention these little things in passing (I believe the first time I even mentioned them was Flower Weekend back in May & then again in July at my first Art Walk) but it doesn’t look like I’ve ever really talked much about my Soap Savers on the blog.

If you follow me on Facebook you may have seen their debut at the Toledo Farmer’s Market:

This handy bath item is the perfect size to collect those little shards of soap in to get every last bit of use out of your soap, or you can even to store a whole bar of soap in it!  I describe them as self-refilling loofas/washcloths because once you have added soap to the inside of the pouch and started working a lather through its walls, it will continue to lather every time it is massaged.

Here is one of my friends who has used hers since last summer (about 6 months at this point).  She loves how well it lathers:

I’ve even found that it makes a nice scrubbie and would probably work to scrub dishes or the bathtub walls!  Does anyone else use a soap saver?

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2014 Goals

I know it may seem a little late to be posting goals for the new year, but these have been swirling in my head since the end of January and I think they are finally ready to be listed and documented.  Not to mention by publishing them I can hold myself accountable and keep myself on track for the year.

  1. Finally get my Tax/ Incorporation in order.  Aka, am I a sole proprietor or LLC?  I meet with my uncle who does taxes for a living to figure this out next week.  πŸ™‚
  2. Commit to at least one show/fair/market per month.  Obviously I missed the first three months this year but so far I’m on track to start in April with the Merchant’s Landing Show April 12 & 13.
  3. Post to this blog once a week.  If more is happening that’s worth posting about, I’ll be sure to post it as well, though it may be less wordy.  Who is ok with just a picture post once in a while?
  4. Get my wares into a physical brick & mortar store.  More to come on this once things are settled.  I’m currently talking with two different shops and it just makes me super excited for new possibilities!

I’ve also started reading this great book that has some nice exercises (I’m not usually a fan of “exercises” in a book) that really spoke to me after I met my goal of doing 1-3 physical shows in 2013.  I felt so empowered and excited I couldn’t wait to make more goals for this year & feel an even bigger empowerment at the end of this year.  Thus my mind has really started opening to the possibilities because of this book & it has really inspired some energy in me for this year’s success.

So far my favorite passage is on goals & goal setting (thus inspiring this organized post instead of just a note to self on a scrap piece of paper):

Goals are really amazing things.  They give you focus and set your course.  […]  Goals support Intentions.  By actively working on these goals, the end result will be accomplished.  You can use your intentions to make sure you keep your business on track. […]  Your goals should be your friends; they should excite you, and you should look forward to working toward them.  Goals are not chores.

Exercise: Make a list of all the goals you’ve had since you decided to be a creative business owner.  Now circle all the goals that you’ve already accomplished.

Quote from Jolie Guillebeau: “Take small steps consistently.  Do something every single day to make a little progress toward your goal.” 

Grow Your Handmade Business – Kari Chapin

Anyone read anything inspiring lately?

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Make It Indie was a Huge Success!

This is definitely my favorite picture from this day:

My husband took this one; I think he has a nice, artful eye.
I think my booth set up skills have greatly improved, even from the Art Walks, but especially from that first one in April last year.  I feel like that one (table set up) haunts me… Does anyone else feel that way about their first show?
Not only is the look of my table starting to get a nice look & feel to it, but the set up time was only 45 minutes compared to over an hour with the Art Walks!  I suppose it could be because Hubby was helping me and we were only setting up merchandise instead of a tent, tables, and then merchandise.  πŸ˜‰

Make It Indie ran from 10am – 7pm (we arrived at 8:30am to set up).  I sat right behind, and made a new friend, Triple L Crochet & Knit.  I think we had a pretty good time visiting and swapping ideas, which is always fun.  Thistle & Bees was next to me, which really helped to alleviate both our nerves about doing our first indoor show.  I would say it also helped to pass the time, but we were so steadily busy, that time passed right along at a swift pace.  I couldn’t believe it was 4pm already and I had hardly eaten any of my breakfast (bagel & cream cheese)!  I’m thrilled to report that I made my booth fee and broke even as early as noon or 1pm, thanks to all my new, fantastic customers!  

Like this young lady who got to design her own hat by choosing her flower color & hat color.   Then she waited patiently while I sewed them together into her own, unique design!
Monday night, finishing up the 3 ear warmers.

I had three orders that are very nearly complete; I just have buttons to sew onto the ear warmers and they are scheduled to go out in the mail later this afternoon or tomorrow morning.

Knitting & crocheting complete; just have to sew the buttons on.

It was such a joy to meet so many new people interested and in love with my wares.  πŸ™‚  I definitely need to do more shows like this one in the future.  I was floating on Cloud 9 the whole evening and all of Sunday, working on orders.  I think I am just now starting to come back to reality and thus getting things like follow-up emails and blogging done.  πŸ˜‰  
Thanks for all your support!  Next up is getting all the new items photographed and listed on etsy so you can see all the choices that were available at the show.  Happy Wednesday!

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Next Show: Make It Indie

Back in September I found out that I would be one of the vendors showing in the Make It Indie show this November.  Yay!  I only had time for a little joyous celebration then it was back to the daily grind of babysitting, driving, and teaching knit/crochet classes.  
September, the last Art Walk of 2013.
Fast Forward to October, my awesome friend Niki (from Thistle & Bees, whom I shared a tent with at all the Art Walks this summer) was talking to me about this event and that she had the day off and should she try to get a spot even though it is a month past the application date?  I said of course because I noticed they were still advertising on Facebook, asking for people to apply.  Happily, she was accepted as well and my request to be placed next to her table has been granted — double yippee!!  
Now I need to seriously kick my butt into gear because I can’t believe the show is NEXT WEEK!!  Yikes!!  How did that sneak up on me so quickly?!  Wasn’t it just September, like, last week? πŸ˜‰
Any suggestions on how to display my hanging items, since I won’t have the tent legs and overhead awning, would be greatly appreciated!  I’m thinking I’ll have to do my clothesline trick along the front of the table like my very first time:
But I certainly don’t want an all-flat, disordering table top…

and what to do with all my hanging items (baby socks, mittens, pants)….
hmm…  I guess a trip over to Pinterest is in order….. πŸ™‚
On a side note, I have to say my goal to be in 1-3 shows in 2013 has definitely been fulfilled and checked off the list this year.  Yay!  πŸ˜€

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