What’s on my Needles This Weekend

I had very good intentions about getting a post up last week but what I wanted to write about was not corresponding with what I had photos of and I had a lot going on last weekend so I took the week off.

I want to try something new with my monthly WIP post.  That is, I’m going to include a list of everything I’m actively knitting on (not that is sitting in the land of forgotten projects or that has been banished to the corner of the yarn room) and then I will  talk about one of the projects in more detail.  I can then double check my progress month to month because nothing seems to be leaving the land of forgotten projects!

So, projects currently getting my attention include: Little Purple Sailor Coat which is by Sublime Yarn and my Derecho by Laura Aylor.  The Derecho is my knit night project unless I have a deadline knit and it may get finished, some day.  I finished all my current deadline projects so found myself being able to chose whatever I wanted to work on this week so it was definitely nice.  I’ll talk more about the Sailor Coat, maybe next month because that’s a longer story.

The last thing on my needles is a newborn hat which I will be listing in my Frekol shop. This does not sound like the most exciting thing to talk about but I think there are a few notable points.

When I was first contacted by the folks at Frekol to open a shop my Etsy shop had been empty for quite some time.  I never got any traction with my Etsy shop and with all the changes I felt a shop my size was just getting lost in the shuffle.  I sold more things to friends or being contacted outside of Etsy.  Frekol is like Etsy but all the sellers are in the Cleveland, Ohio area so a bit smaller.  As I was thinking about reopening the store, I knit a couple of small Christmas ornaments which were little sweaters, stockings, etc. out of some sock yarn for gifts.  I loved knitting them, they used very little yarn and a light bulb went off – this is something I could knit and make a few dollars on.  I could also knit newborn hats which don’t take very much time or yarn either.  This would be a way to use up leftover sock yarn (I always have a lot because I have super tiny feet) and be able knit things I enjoy knitting, look good and had some built in profit.

It has also turned out that at my new job we have to take 1/2 hour break but we are also allowed to eat at our cubicles.  This means I eat as I work and then break for 1/2 hour and knit things to put in my store.  When I had my Etsy store, I never had time to specifically knit for the store so everything was listed as knit to order.  I was also doing much more complicated hats for babies and kids which still did not take much time (but definitely more time) or yarn.  These had a very low profit margin.  Now, I have products stocked and have time dedicated to knitting things just for the shop.  If I need to knit more it will only take a day or two instead of a week or two so I’m hoping these might start selling come fall when people are starting to think about Christmas.

When I was at the Great Lakes Fiber Show a couple of weeks ago I found some great yarn that is in the colors of the Cleveland Browns.  I’ve been focusing on finding yarns that are the colors of the local sports teams because we in Cleveland love our sports! (and if anyone knows where I can pick up some Cavs colored yarn let me know!!)  I could not wait to dive in.  I whipped up this little stocking ornament.  I then cast on a newborn hat and I love the way you can see the change in the striping based on the size of the object.

For my hats, I’ve been casting on 85 stitches on size 4 needles and knitting until it’s about 4 inches. I hate ribbing so I just knit and let the bottom edge roll up.  I then use the Knitulator found on the Eskimimi’s Makes blog to work my decreases.  This is a great (free) tool.  All you have to do is enter the number of stitches you have and then the number you want to decrease and it will work out the spacing so it’s even all the way around.  And, that’s it – hat done.  It’s great lunchtime knitting and it’s also good for meetings and waiting so I always have one in my bag now

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News and Notes

It seems like there has been a lot going on lately so I thought I would just put together a quick update.

First, earlier this week I was contacted by a writer from CountryLiving.com who is doing an article on great yarn bombed decor ideas.  She was asking permission to use a photo from my blog post Anatomy of a Yarn Bomb. She will be crediting me for the photo and providing a link to my blog. I’m so excited and can’t wait to see the article!!!

Second, I won an Instagram contest!  I recently joined a new website called Frekol – you can check out my shop here.  The site was developed by some local folks and is basically a smaller, more local version of Etsy.  They are one of the sponsors of the Midwest Craft Con which is being held in Columbus, Ohio this year.  They ran a contest where you tagged your favorite local maker and they randomly drew one winner for a pass to the conference and I won!!!!

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The Midwest Craft Con is a 3 day retreat for crafters, makers and creative business owners.  There are some amazing people giving talks including Tara Swiger, Abby Glassenberg and Lisa Congdon.  I think I will learn a lot and meet some great people!

A few other happenings right now.  One, I just signed up for a new test knit so stay tuned for details on that!  I’m waiting for my yarn to arrive and then I’m going to dig in!  Two, I saw the other day that ArohaKnits announced she was starting a podcast with KnitFitch and it is called The Fiber Boss.  I gave it a listen and found it very informative and entertaining.  They have also started a Facebook group by the same name.  The idea is for fiber related business owners to unite and provide support and encouragement to one another.  I’ve been blown away by the folks who have joined. There is such a wide range of both types and sizes of businesses that I’m sure everyone can learn something.  It’s a great group – the other day I was having a long chat with a nice woman who has a goat farm in France (field trip 🙂 ).  If you have a fiber business or are looking to head in that direction check it out!

One last thing – my hotel for Rhinebeck has officially been booked!!  I can’t wait to make the journey and if you’re going to be there I would love to meet up!  More details to come but I’m so super excited that I had to share the news now!!!