Monday, April 25, 2011

Super Bright Orange Armwarmers...Pt 2

Running into a slight problem...Running out of this colorway.  Want to make two of the same kind so figured out how much half of what I started out with and am making sure to stop short of or at that amount.  Basically this leaves the end ribbing left.  So while not a failure, wasn't quite what I thought it was going to be.  The thickness of the yarn also makes the armwarmer on my arm huge (and I have tiny arms!)  This isn't something that's not happened before with this pattern, as other people have had this issue, but I think this is even worse for the fact that it's a heavy worsted.

The other issue is WHAT color to choose to finish off the end of the armwarmer?  The only other thing I've used this color for was my "Toxic Waste Apple" and I used white with that and I'm kind of inclined to do that with this one as well...then again I already have interest in this piece and I want to make sure they get sold.......time to consult the consumer....

Color Choices:

From Left to Right:  White, Red (it is a True Red in regular light), Navy Blue, Bright Green, Burgundy

Let us know what you think as far as a color suggestion!

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Thoughts From the Artist - Being Green

Recently we read an article written by the lovely Monica Wilcox about being green.  While a lot of it "trined" with us, it brought up many things that we hadn't even thought of (which is always good!)  We're currently about to start packaging up another order for the store and a thought occurred to us that we felt we should share!

If you don't already, try to work towards making you business green!  There are several simple ways to do this and it is rewarding for both you and your consumers.  (Also don't forget to share ways to be green with them too when you package things!)

As a handmade artist you may be already being green with your works - recycling old sweaters for yarn, recycling or upcycling things (like this artist and stripper shoes!), or even just being green-er by supporting local artists and businesses yourself (buying supplies, bartering time or services, etc).  But there's more to it than just that (although we're not knocking it and encourage you to keep up the good work!)

One easy way to be green is through your packaging!  Sure it may be nice to buy that pretty new, never used, decorated box.  But think about it this way.  That box was created, time and energy were spent that can't be retrieved to create that box.  Sure it's nice to look at, but ultimately what is likely to happen to that box after it gets sent?  Trashed.  Not recycled, not reused, it's just most likely to be turned into trash.  Trash that we don't need any more of.  So instead of doing that, try to re-use a box.  Do you have an old shoebox that will work?  If you don't have any lying about (likely because you threw them away or are using them) try this.  Go to a local grocery story, liquor store, or other retailer - like Michaels (and we can give you this tip having worked there before!) and ask if you can have some boxes.  It's worth a shot.  A number of the boxes that we have on hand for our store come from Michaels and we're not even half way through them.  Granted if you don't sell a lot or have limited space (like we do) you may not wish to grab a ton.  But even a few is helpful.  Because many stores are only going to trash them and throw them out.  Not even recycle themselves!

So now that you have a box, thinking about what else you need.  If it's fragile, or just don't fill the box completely (and rarely does anything it seems) you will likely need packaging materials.  Instead of that fancy tissue paper that you use half of try old newspapers.  You don't even have to buy it - you can grab some of the free ones that are usually for local stuff.  Then there is the wrapping you may have received for anything you've bought.  And don't forget....plastic bags - you know the kind your groceries come in.  For us around here (and much to the chagrin of my other half) I'm always saving things like newspaper and plastic bags.  But in this tight economy and with the advent of everything humanity has done to poison the planet reuse and recycling is a really good (and economic) way to help out.

So next time you're in the post office noting people purchasing fancy boxes and rolls of bubble wrap you can smile to yourself knowing that even if it's only one package every so often, you're helping!

Monday, April 18, 2011

Super Bright Orange Armwarmers...Pt 1

Some time ago I came across a neat pattern (finally) for a set of ribbed armwarmers.  As anyone should know if you go looking through patterns there are a number of different styles but many are rather fanciful and sometimes just plain overly decorative.  Being the utilitarian sort of person that I am I try to go for things that are a bit more simple and then do my own improvisation later rather than something heavily improvised to begin with.

While I was ecstatic when I found them I was disappointed that I couldn't immediately start on them (as I didn't have the necessary size or type of needles I needed.)  Lo and behold a few weeks ago I finally ordered a set, fifteen different sized DPNs from 0s to 15s to be exact, and have only just now remembered my pattern findings.

As it stands I have a decent amount of worsted weight yarn (what the pattern suggests) but nothing I quite wanted to part with for this particular project, so I opted to use some hideous yarn I inherited from someone cleaning out their home.  A very bright neon (like the color hunters wear) orange.  Thus far the pattern seems to be working well enough, which is good.  Though further research of other people's success with it is so so.  (There are a number of complaints about how the thumb is made and how it produces a holier look than is likely intended.)

But so far so good as it were, eyesoreness aside.

One of the benefits of this pattern is that it's constructed in the round (a preference of mine).  Working in the round generally limits the amounts of seams made and to me gives the project a more cohesive look.  On the other hand if you fudge something it's not as easy to hide...

Saturday, April 2, 2011

April Updates!

A day late, a dollar short...while this update was supposed to have gone out yesterday that day was filled with a little too much frustration and errand running, so today is the day and we'll just pretend...

Throughout March we've accepted a number of "new orders" most of them custom.  Some have been all out, "this is what I want, in this color, size, etc" while others have just been ideas being tossed around and notes drawn out.

We also brought Faith Works back to, but our goal of 5 new items & 1 gallery item has been slow going so we're not as up to date with all our stock as we'd like to be but it's getting there!

A quick view of all of the projects we've got in our queue (being currently worked on):

  • Nicole L's Scarf
  • Nicole L's Hat
  • Autumn Evening Hat
  • Sweet Lil Goth Hat
  • Scrap Granny Square Afghan
  • Plastic Bag Holder (for Lori)
  • "Reiki Awakening" Logo for Alice
  • Reiki Principles for Nicole
  • Carebear Rug for Sarah
  • Placemats
  • Belts
  • Ugly Plaid Dog Pillow
  • GaBus
  • Butterfly Mosaic Shawl
  • Double Pocket Knitting Needle Case
  • KAL with Derby (the Hacky Sack Hoodie)
  • Shirt for Krystal
  • *Hoodie for Joni

As you can see it's a good number of projects going on and almost all of them are "long term" (meaning they'll need many, many hours put into them to finish or make headway.  And of course as always we're generally always accepting new orders, we just move things around in our queue.

So here's to April, accepting new orders, finishing previous ones, placing more in our new storefront and lots and lots of sales!

Till May :D