The Business of Crochet 101 - Are you a Designer?

You crochet.  You can't remember a time when you didn't.  You were taught by a mentor; Mom, Grandmother, Friend, Aunt, somewhere along the way, or you picked up a book and taught yourself.  Now, your inspired by all the exciting new fibers and design ideas are popping inside your head, your dreaming about new stitches, different ways to connect them, every waking thought is about CROCHET!  You might be or could be a designer.

Before embarking on this huge step take stock of what you know about your craft, your supplies, your pattern books, your research library, your tools, your time!  Most of all analyze yourself.  That's right, analyze you.  Your skills, your craft knowledge, computer software knowledge, your ability to fail time and time again.  Do you get frustrated and determined or do you despair and quit.  This is an important analysis of your traits and what will work for you or against you.

Some of the skills a designer needs is the ability to practice with their yarn(s) to create something unique, or make something traditional with a new fiber that hasn't been done before.  Creating pieces for present day trends  You should also be able to recreate it, meaning you've documented your steps well.  There are folks who are pattern writers who can help you but they can't determine what you were trying to accomplish, that is your design right as a designer.

The market (single pattern, big box stores, small yarn shops, organizations, magazine and book companies etc) is very robust for all kinds of articles (clothing, blankets, afghans, scarves, hats, mittens, leg warmers, socks etc) made from yarn in a variety of crochet stitch techniques (cables, tunisian, intarsia, broomstick, double-hook, croknit etc).

Be strong, keep designing, researching and networking that's what being a designer is all about!

Annual Chain Link Conference in Greensboro, NC

What a wonderful comprehensive conference, I'm still recovering.

Took lots of classes; Bullion Stitch, Aran Crochet, Hairpin Lace, Double Hook, Tunisian Crochet by the end of the conference I was creating new stitches because everything started to mush together!

Met lots of wonderful women, both professionals and hobbyists and shared everything under the sun about this craft we call Knit and Crochet.  I plan to call many of them friends and mentors for a long time.

Join CGOA and come play in Reno in 2012!

Followed my 1st Hairpin Lace Instructions!

A big thank you to Margret Willson for this great pattern.  Being a newbie at this craft I was thrilled and proud of me when I finished this lovely bookmark.  I will make again because I see where I interpreted her instructions differently and can correct on my second one.  Quick and easy and fun!  Looks like I'll be adding a "Hairpin Lace" folder to my library!

Follow my Progress making Hairpin Lace!

Learning a new skill which takes some of the pressure off my fingers for awhile!  I used to cringe when I saw pics of Hairpin Lace but to be honest it's not that difficult.  My lovely man whipped up a loom for me yesterday and by the end of the night I had 4-70 loop strips!

All this is homework for my Beginning Hairpin Lace class at the 2011 Knit & Crochet Conference the end of this month....can't wait!  Their going to teach us different ways to assemble these strips and I will have a lovely little purse when we're done.


After reading more detailed instructions found on Wee Folk Art website, I do have to go back and count BOTH sides of each strip to make sure I have the correct number of stitches and then I read to roll them up so they don't twist for when I'm ready to assemble them so off I go!

How to make a Portfolio?

Never made a portfolio before and it's kicking my butt!  Lots of design time and printing but I think it's coming along ok.  Really need to have this done before I leave for Greensboro, NC to the CGOA Conference.  You never know who you might meet and I'm on the hunt for Editors :)

CGOA Fall Knit & Crochet Show

I have decided to attend.  Not a decision made easily as its a 7 hour drive for me but hey live, live live :)

I've also signed up for some kick-butt classes to really expand my knowledge:

Full of Bullion (If you've never tried this stitch it will scare you blind!  The instructor is going to "make it easy!"
Double Hook Crochet
Knit & Purl with your Crochet
Aran Crochet
Hairpin Lace

All are so exciting, I can't wait.....now planning what clothes to take!

International Scarf Swap


Here is the scarf I made for my Ravelry Swap partner.  This was fun, hope to do this again!

Blanket America

www.blanketamerica.com
I was searching on-line for California King sheets (so hard to find in any store!), when I came across this company.  After I chose a couple of sets (one to wash the other to put on the bed), I noticed something about them.  Through my purchase a blanket is donated to a family in need right here in America.  So cool!  Love it!  I will definitely do all my linen ordering from them from now on.

Ravelry's International Scarf Swap

Loved participating in this event!  Came back from vacation to open a package with the prettiest sage, pineapple design scarf made in cotton tucked inside Ravelry.  Plus Swiss chocolate, handmade dandelion jam and a nice little canvas library bag all from my Scarf Swap partner Nicole.  Can't wait to do this again!

If you are a fiber arts nut, Join Ravelry

Checklist

WOW, I WAS GONE FOR 2 MONTHS!  Didn't know I would be gone that long.  I had a great time catching up with family.  Found out my Sister loves to weave and dabble in clay, can't wait to see her results.  My brother is beginning/building a plant nursery (he has plenty of help he says as he looks his son in the eye).  My brother-in-law loves to play Phase 10, actually let me win the last night I was there!  It was hard to hug my Mom goodbye we shared so much together over those two months, and got lots of important stuff done like getting all our old movies onto a digital format, it's going to be great seeing the movies her and my Dad took over the years.

All in all a super good time and I found that YES I can drive across this great country of ours and what a blast it was. 

Going over my checklist for my trip across country tomorrow, YEAH!  Toothbrush, hairbrush, socks, more shoes, shorts because it's warmer there, jeans at least 3 pair, check check check.......!  Oh, and lots of hair thingys......and YARN lots of YARN!  Going to show my Mom and Sister my new knitting machine.

It's going to be great hanging out with the girls for awhile, so looking forward to it!

Figuring Taxes and Investments

I've learned if you don't have a calculator you won't be very good at these!

When it rains.....

it Pours!  My poor son and his little family (wife, 3 small children, 2 dogs, 3 cats) homeless after a pipe burst in the attic.  Unfortunately, they were gone all day.  Can you even imagine!  So, if you think your life wasn't full enough and something like this happens, well like the saying goes "S%$#!@T Happens!"

God bless them.

Sisters

About Sisters.  I am blessed to have two.  We are related but we are truly three very different people. Our interests are different.  Our thoughts are certainly different.  Our goals are too.  When I look at my sisters and contemplate who I am, a dimension is realized.  I'm special too, in my difference.  I love you and hold you dear to my heart every day, God Bless our Sisters.

Magic's First Etsy Treasury

Placement no.5

Lovely Alphabet Blanket in a Treasury

Placement no.9

Magic Blanket in a Treasury

Placement no.8

Alphabet Cube in a Treasury

Placement no.9

Don't ask me for a receipt!

I don't know what this says about me, but the "Walmart welcome person" getting decked for asking an exiting customer for a receipt made me LMAO!  Mind you I do not advocate violence against anyone ever, that is not a solution to the problem.

I think I laughed because that policy has irritated me for a long time.  It makes me feel like a criminal.  On the other hand I'm happy this person has a job but seriously some people take exception to waiting in a long line to get checked out, or waiting in an even longer line to check yourself out then have someone step up to you (like at the airport) to have you show your proof of purchase, what are you thinking?  This person is only say 50 feet from where I just checked out so really?  Really?  REALLY?

Shame on Walmart for putting this person in harms way.

Baby Lambs

A day at the farm with the new ones is always so special!

Don't be Fooled

Don't be fooled by the bear.  Sure she's all cute and cuddly snuggling up to that pretty blue blanket.  She does bite every now and again, I've seen it.  I'm sure she just does it to get attention of course.  Doesn't mean anything by it.  Left alone, gets lonely so keep her occupied Blogging, Tweeting, Facebook and creating for Etsy and she's happy again, but, for how long?  The winter is too long and the hibernation must come to an end!

ANNEMARIE'S BREIBLOG: Link Your Stuff!

ANNEMARIE'S BREIBLOG: Link Your Stuff!

Book Frenzy

The 50,000+ book sale is still going on this weekend!  Went a week ago and couldn't pick anything up for days my arms were so sore from moving boxes around.  This warehouse literally has more books than I've ever seen outside a bookstore.  Picked up a few treasures from the early 1800's, love it!  Deciding to go back but wow, am I ready for the pain too?!  I know, "no pain no gain" so off I go :)

What's the secret?

Click the title and discover more than you may have expected!  lol

All the best MamaWitch! 

Etsy People Search Policy

Oh my, I don't know what to think.  Has the damage already been done?  Will buyers not buy now because they are still worried about Etsy's next move?  The ability to search sales by persons name is not appropriate and I can't imagine why Etsy would have allowed this functionality into their site strategy.  So, will I move my shop?  I'm still on the fence right now.  I like to give folks a chance to make it right, but will be monitoring closely.

How to take Anna Down?

On "V" Anna is always one step ahead!  And poor Ty!  Last nights season ending was great but disturbing, Erica doesn't know about her son yet nor that Lisa has been entombed.  Can't wait till they start the season again!

Gas prices and my business

I am so worried about shipping costs going up even more due to the gas price escalation.  I personally have  made decisions not to order something because I can't afford the item + the cost of shipping.  Also, I can no longer afford to buy something on vacation and bring it back in airplane luggage because of their baggage fees.  This can't be good for our domestic economy.

Craft Store Pat Catan's Grand Opening this weekend in Mount Vernon, OH

Well Pat Catan's won out!  Enjoyed going through the store again and signing up for the contests and prizes.  Have a new craft idea in mind so spent some time thinking about components and planning planning.........

Now I have two things competing!  The Women's Expo in Columbus and Pat Catan's here in town!  Love them both and will try to attend both!  Nice try but snowed last night and don't want to drive it.  So, in to town I will go!  It's great having a craft store so close that has so many things to choose from.  The projects they promote are endless and there are even quite a few from my early years "macrame'" oh my!

Mid-Ohio Fiber Fair

My calendar is getting filled in finally after such a long dry winter!

The Mid-Ohio Fiber Fair is going to be in the next town over!  Newark, Ohio in August.  I have never been to one of these, but the rumble they create is huge.  I have much to think about, what Vendors are going to be there, Needle Suppliers?, Yarn Suppliers?, Neat Machine Suppliers?  Start saving all the penny's now I think!
More to come on this topic as we get closer!

American Idol

I was right Scotty took the prize and well deserved too!

3/04-Scotty is still in the running.  I guess I'm just partial to country but I love his looooow voice.

Wow, are there some truly unique, lovely voices this year.  I'm making my list of fav's, right now it's that sultry country boy :) Scotty, you ROCK!

ONLY A FEW HOURS LEFT

Oh, well!  The caterer did not show up with my order of Lobster and Shrimp cocktails so I ditched dressing up, there's always next year.  Fun time for all and love the stories after the best from ET. 

Desperately going through my closet for what to wear Sunday!  The Sofa Globe deserves something new!!!! YIKES :)

My Special Thanks to Malcakes!

Saw her blogspot and the rest is history! I love running across folks who can teach me and boy did she ever! Visit her shop for some lovely things.
TYTYTYTYTYTYTYTYVM!

Ravelry - International Scarf Swap

3/22 - Design is done, Scarf is done!  Yeah, and I love it I hope my Ravelry Pal does to.  Now, my thoughts run to packaging and waiting for Ravelry to say "SEND".  Actually, exchanged emails with my Pal and it's going on Winter in Australia and she says they have had a very long summer and are ready for some cool air.  Our winter is coming to a close and it's certainly welcomed it's been a loooooong one!

3/04-The colors are picked and the winners are the classic Teal and Brown!  I have a design drafted out on paper, hopefully it will come together the way I want it to.  Looked at yarn yesterday and still looking didn't see exactly what I was looking for so maybe a trip to Newark.

My scarf will be made by a lady in Switzerland! I have been researching and designing (in my head mostly) what scarf I will make for my friend in Australia. Thinking about her favorite colors and making combinations. Busy brain! Stay tuned! I will post a picture as soon as I have it.

Indie Biz Chicks

Learn how to De-Clutter your Biz! Their going to show us how...CHECK IT OUT!

Winter Wind is my friend

Winter is still coming on strong, so thought I would start out positive this morning. My Mom who is in Arkansas tells me I have another winter snow storm heading East. Will we get it here, we'll see in a few hours.

This means the CRAFTING can continue, layered and snug in my winter garb to spend the day in my craft room, maybe crocheting, writing up a pattern for a new friend or just blogging!

Have a good day everyone.

Phew!

Survived the Monster Storm as it brushed through Mid-Ohio. I have to say we are very fortunate in Mt. Vernon, Ohio as I watch the aftermath news after being without power for only 35 hours. My prayers go out to those that still are without, it's no fun.

Missed my Zibbet, Etsy, Facebook friends a lot!

All the best to all of you :)

Signed,
Gratefully warm in Mid-Ohio

RAVELRY

What a great place to share the world of knit and crochet! Recently joined in the fun to do an International Scarf Swap can't wait to communicate with my partner somewhere in the world.

Navigating the waters

Hope you like the new look! I have learned so much today about Google, Blogspot, Etsy, Zibbet, Picasa with regards to pictures, uploading, saving, slideshows, security and sharing and lots lots lots more! Enjoy the slideshow, it's something that I will update hopefully on a regular basis.

Yesteryear 1854!

There is no female accomplishment so universal as this of knitting...
Crochet work has arisen to the the dignity of an art...

LOVE IT!
Keep those hands busy :)

Busy busy busy as a bird

More fun then I can stand right now on Zibbet!

Mi Casa es Su Casa Treasury Enjoy!

Celebrating our diversity in homes.

Becoming an Etsy-ian

What's it like becoming an Etsy-ian you wonder? This last year has been jammed packed full of research, photography, scanning, planning, writing, juggling, making product, studing analytics, blogging, FB, editing, chatting, treasuring, hearting and more. The tasks seem endless. The way unclear. You get your shop looking the way you want it to today only to sit in a chat room and revise it the next. Then you sit back and analyze what you've done and wonder is this what the "Customer(s) want"? Unfortunately, there's no way to know until that order appears out of the mist!

I don't see trading in all this fun quite yet, I'm sure there are many more blogs and websites I can join or learn to use. Then there's the little detail of buying a new camera so all the pictures on Pamela's Patterns and The Pink Toadstool can be re-re-redone. All the while thinking what will I make today?

Bonnie Sax is in an Etsy Treasury

Thank you Kittie's Boutique!

Baby's First Blanket in an Etsy Treasury

I've lost the link but thank you RBOriginals!