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Modular Crochet back in Print

Oh I had such big plans for keeping up with this site but life does tend to get in the way when you own a business, still do custom crochet and lots of other irons in the fire.  But this news just can NOT wait, look what I found Modular Crochet this is simply amazing and probably about the most popular crochet book EVER.  Yes crochet has never really gotten a good reputation for making garments as some see it as being stiff, un moldable so to speak, no drape and on and on.  Ok throw all that out the window and get your copy of this book right now.  You will not be disappointed and it does show you how to make some pretty simple but yet at the same time over elegant crochet pieces that you can customize to fit your various needs.  If  you have never seen this book, I suggest you ask around to other crocheters and get a glimpse inside.  Everything is simply fabulous to make, Yes you can use any type of yarn, super easy to follow patterns and I guarantee when you get started you will get filled up with a ton more of ideas to put your own twist on the various patterns.  Please spread this news around as I am positive it will sell out very quickly.

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It’s ok to Quit

I just closed the yarn portion of my shop but don’t feel sorry because it was not for lack of business. Had plenty of business and being one of the most unique business as a New Age/Yarn Store things can get pretty hectic. No doubt about it I did love my store but honestly something had to give, being a one woman operation can get a bit overwhelming and tiring very quickly. I did have 5 glorious years, working on my 6th with just the yarn alone but I have also had other things that I just really wanted to accomplish. Thus the title of this article “It’s ok to Quit”. Most of us are told things like “don’t be a quitter”, “quitters never win” and etc. etc. Just not true actually knowing WHEN to quit can put you back on the winning track faster than a speeding bullet!!

Yes I do know how to delegate but for me my business is very personal and it is hard to find someone who loves it like I do. When you own a business that is not in the “raking in a million trillion” every year, it can be hard to be able to hire help. BUT I do have a road that I have been wanting to travel down and as previously mentioned, something had to give so it was the yarn. I have had in my head for too many years to count an entire design line that has never even been thought of and in order for me to make that happen I HAD to lighten my load so to speak. I will not lie, it was devastating trying to pick what to cut out because I love all of it but had to be realistic if I wanted to get the other accomplished. Here is how I came to my decisions.

Look at the bottom line, IF you have to let some things go it certainly is a case of who your customers are and I won’t sugar coat it here, where you are making your most money. NO it isn’t always about money but when you own a business you MUST look to the future of how you will or won’t keep your doors open and how you will be able to fulfill your personal goals as well. If you are not grounded and balanced then you will not be giving your customers the best of you and we all know that is a MUST for a successful business. I really struggled with this until I started to look at big business and realized they do it on a constant basis. They keep what works and throw out what doesn’t, how many times have we just loved say a type of cleaner, soap, or even type of food only to find out later it was discontinued because not enough people loved it as much as we did. Unless that particular thing was the only reason you shopped at a store, more than likely you are still shopping there and may or may not be still looking for that certain something to replace what you loved. Again won’t lie here, I was terrified to quit a portion of my business that I started with and the day I did not renew my business license for the yarn I felt sick. It did not last long I am currently working like a crazy person, charting out and planning the new line of designs that I do plan on self publishing and releasing soon and have never felt better about my decision to QUIT a part of my business. Take the plunge, sit down and look hard at what you are doing and see where you can “Quit” a few things.

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Cleaning Up your Craft Room

If I wasn’t so embarrassed, I would of taken a picture of my craft room but instead I will just sort of explain it to you. Yarn everywhere, some things in the right place but very disorganized, things thrown in boxes, lots of totes with just about everything under the sun thrown in, well I think you get the picture. I am sure that more than likely my disorganization is the result of some deep rooted something or another BUT after all this time I decided to clean up. First I started with my 2 rather large legal size filing cabinets that were full of patterns. I went thru them and honestly (that is a very important thing when cleaning up and out) decided what would be going and what would be staying. The results were a 5 shelf book case of what I wanted to keep and the rest I took to my shop to sell. Once I cleared that hurdle, yes I procrastinated about another month before I got enough guts to attempt the actual craft room.

I played hooky one Saturday morning and hit the second hand stores before I opened up and there they were, my extra kick in my back side that I needed to “get r done”!!!! A 3 piece office set which consisted of one low piece with 9 smaller drawers, one piece with 5 short in height but long in width drawers, and one piece that has 2 drawers. I don’t really know if this was a bedroom set or an office set but anyways at $120.00 for all 3 pieces it was a win for me. I have my husband get them home and I purposely had them put into the family room, my reason, they would be in the way so I would HAVE to clean out my craft room in order for them to fit. Well that worked, I got busy on Sunday morning and stayed after it, again using honesty I cleaned, sorted, until I felt satisfied with it. Results are now I know exactly what I have, it is organized, and I feel like a ton of bricks have been lifted from me. Yes I am a little bit ashamed that I have accumulated that much stuff but the good thing is I got rid of what I HONESTLY (there is that word again) know that I will never use. From now on I will certainly think about a purchase instead of just grabbing it because it is craft related. Now hopefully this may inspire those of you that need it, to clean out your stash, books, or even yarn. Good Luck

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Yarn Shop Etiquette sort of

I have owned my own yarn shop for well over a year and it really has been quite the learning experience. Please do not think for one moment that I am unhappy about it because that is so far from the truth but there are times when I just want to shake people and look deep into their eyes and ask WHY???? I always feel like I am being rude if I tell someone “OMG this is flu season for crying out loud quit rubbing that all over your face, smelling it etc.” or “please go wash your hands, yes I see you licking your fingers because there is chocolate or whatever all over them and licking them off doesn’t clean them” . Ok enough of my whining all in all I do really enjoy my little shop and I feel overly blessed in so many ways to not only be able to open it but, knock on wood (or my head) that I am still open.

Below is a link to a very well written article about both sides of the coin so to speak regarding yarn shops and I can’t tell you how glad am I that they wrote it because I do not have a way with words, enjoy.

Twisted Collective Shop Talk

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Crochet 2012

Happy New Year, yes I made it to 2012 and really believe that this will be a great year. As I have previous reported, crochet is up and coming and it is still making large leaps. For me, Crochet has always been a forced to be reckoned with because of it’s overly flexible nature. More and more designers are showing their tricks and secrets that can be used to create and design just about anything you desire. Tunisian is also making headway, many crocheters are discovering that Tunisian or Afghan Crochet can be used in many different ways, gives a nice drape, texture especially for garments. Next is Slip Stitch Crochet, yes I will agree that using this technique in the round is about the best way to get it’s effect. Many socks, hats, gloves, and skirts are being made with this easy branch of crochet.

Knooking has certainly made a huge appearance. As a teacher of Crochet and Knitting, I can’t stress enough the joy that many crocheters are experiencing as they now can knit with a crochet hook. It is easily learned and every knit pattern can be converted over to a knooking one. Leisure Arts has a small kit that can be purchased to learn the technique and there are quit a few groups on Yahoo and Ravelry that are great places to learn all the tricks and of course get any help that you may need. There are also several other surprises that are coming up pretty quick that I will certainly be sharing with you here so be on the look out. Yes I do think this will be a great year especially for Crochet.

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Here Kitty Kitty

Here in my neck of the woods, we are STILL getting snow and cold weather so if you are too, check out this pattern. Cuddly Cat Scoodie Although I have not yet made one, I certainly do plan on it. This is super cute, fairly easy and mostly made up of double crochets so except for a little bit of sewing , this could be a pretty fast project. Please do respect her copyright wishes, alot of work does go into writing out patterns and we all want designers to continue to share with us and I’m pretty sure one of the ways to continue to make that happen is to do so.

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If you use yarn then you have scraps and for whatever reason, we seem to hold on to these no matter how much is left. I’m sure I just belong to some type of yarn hoarder group AND more than likely there will be a reality TV show about this, hehe. Anyway I found a couple of good patterns that would certainly help you make good use of those AND they are even beautiful to look at and honestly to date I have not make color matches and all of mine turn out beautiful, but remember I love colors of all kinds. You are certainly welcome to match colors up if you want to but I do not. First up we have Wool Eater and many thanks go to Sarah London for posting the very fabulous and in detail instructions.

Next on our list is Rainbow never ending Granny Square which I also love and there is even a graph to go along with it. There are many patterns on how to use up your left over yarn but I really love these 2 and what I “try” , remember I said TRY, to do is to start one of these and keep it going as I have scraps or left over yarn. Surprisingly enough if you start one, you see it and usually will just add to it. Good luck with keeping that stash in line.

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