Crafting Wherever, Whenever

My favorite thing about the knitting + crocheting niche is that I am not
tied to a designated desk all day in order to get my products made.

I can stash a ball of yarn and utensils (scissors + needles or hook) in my purse and work wherever I am that day.  When I would chauffeur all day, I could knit at our stops (15 minutes here; 45 minutes there), or when I would watch an older gentleman in his home (while his daughter/ caretaker was out running her errands) I would knit while he watched a movie or we would work on a puzzle.  Sometimes I’d bring my laptop to catch up on emails + blog reading/writing.  But the best part about this aspect is that when I’m waiting in a long line or in a waiting room, I can happily pass the time productively knitting (or crocheting) without feeling like I’m “wasting my time.”

The other great part about this niche is how infinite it is.  There are so many different interpretations on the same project, let alone on the different items + styles that one can create out of yarn, that there are vast options available to the customer.

Sometimes I think it is hard to be original in this field because it may seem like everything has been done.  But then I allow myself to solve a problem with my own puzzle-solving creativity before I look to the internet to “tell” me how others have solved it (youtube, pinterest, etc).  You can see examples of my problem-solving when you read one of my original patterns.

What is your favorite thing about your niche?

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First e-Pattern

I’ve been writing my own patterns nearly as long as I’ve been knitting + crocheting.  However, it was only when I started teaching + using my simple, beginner patterns that I started to seriously write them out for others to use. 

Luckily my students have been very forgiving as well as constructive critiques to help me get the pattern written correctly for beginners to follow easily.  

You can check out the new pattern here. 

Does anyone else write + sell their own patterns?  What words of advice would you offer?  I’d love to check out your work; please leave a link to your listing in the comments!

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Purging + Organzing

Even though this blog has been relatively quiet the last week, I’ve been spinning my wheels around the house purging + organizing like crazy!  Little EJ is well on the move and nothing is safe.  So I’ve frantically been baby proofing and chasing her nearly every minute of the day.  Naptimes have been devoted to chores + more purging.  Today was a big virtual purge day of old files from college and even high school!  I’ve found a couple fun documents that I shared on my private blog but perhaps I’ll post them over here in the future.

Teaching has been picking up pace.  Monday had 9 people signed up for Arm Knitting!  NINE!  My second largest class was only 4!  It was definitely a new experience, but a fun one for me.  I hope all the rest of my students enjoyed themselves.  Nearly everyone left with a completed double-wrap cowl (only one person gave up, our resident Crocheter who has always refused to learn to knit) and an enthusiasm to return for the Yarn Night in March.  Maybe I can convince our Crocheter to give Arm Knitting another try…

Tonight I finished my own Arm Knitting cowl that I didn’t have time to complete Monday night – and I even had enough to make a single-wrap cowl with the left over yarn.  While knitting, I came across this post by Kyla Roma and I loved the idea of interviewing your clients instead of “imagining your ideal customer.”  I have never been good at “guessing” who my ideal customer is because I am always (happily!) surprised at who stops at my table, what they pick up, and even their comments/suggestions educates and inspires me.  Maybe I can start handing out a brief questionnaire and ask them to fill it out in exchange for a discount?  Would that peak your interest at your local art fairs?

Help me write an inspiring + constructive questionnaire.  What questions do you wish your favorite craft biz owners knew about you?

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Rocky Coast Cardigan

For the past month I have finally committed and allowed myself to knit on a personal project that is all for me (thus why you haven’t seen any new projects for the shop here or on Instagram).  I’ve had the Rocky Coast Cardigan pattern for over a year (last Christmas) and with the gift of some beautiful alpaca yarn, the time felt right to cast on.

As of today, I have frogged it twice: once for too many rows (having miss interpreted the pattern) & second to go up one size.  Yesterday I tried on my cardigan only to discover it fit just a little too snug for my preference :-\

Slipping the sleeves onto my “holders” – aka paper clips

Hopefully third time’s the charm…

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Navy Blue Beanie

Last Thursday I finished Michelle’s blue beanie.  A nice, classic crochet beanie with one row of white along the edge for a little pop.  
It is amazing what one dash of a contrasting color with do!
Even with EJ on the move, I’m still finding little snippets of time to sit down and craft – even if I don’t get to blog about it much.  😦  So I’ve been trying to at least make myself post to Instagram.  Hope to see you there!

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Decorating for Christmas

Slowly but surely it is starting to look like Christmas around here!

Hubby hung the Christmas lights on the house last week & I hung up the wreath on our door.

I had hopes to get three stockings knit up by now but it hasn’t yet.  Maybe next week?  Last night I got around to making this crochet star garland, though, and that is a decoration crossed off the list!

We’re planning to pick out a real Christmas tree this year so EJ has the full holiday experience.  It should be up by this weekend and I’ll update with a photo when we do.

What decorations have you put up?

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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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