And just like that, I find myself back in order mode. I got two orders in today for crochet slouchy beanies. I had the yarn for one and not for the other so Mr. Honey had to drive over to JoAnn to pick it up for me. (Because we are down to one car – I told him it wouldn’t work. I don’t think he’s going to want to pick up my supplies for me very often.)

This is one of them. I like it. As of this writing, three more folk have this in their cart. If you want to join them, find the listing here.

Of course order mode comes when I have three items on the needles. Design and stock mode means having more than one thing going on. It is about to become four because I am going to have to put in some of the summer beanies in the shop along with the headband, basic beanie and the hooded scarf.

 I did buy more than two dozen skeins of cotton yarn. I had some in the stash already and it should be used for something. What’s one more thing to add to the pile? I will be in order mode for just a couple of days – unless this summer beanie begins to take off. That would something to hope for.

Cotton yarn is going to be my friend for the next few days. I am feeling hopeful and I want to strike while the iron may be warming up. A few summer sales is the goal. Just like that I would be a four season shop!

January was a great month and I didn’t see that coming. I missed my revenue objective by $6 last year and it was a not great year though it was a great month. January hit and more than an order a day came with it! I am so thankful and grateful and it gave me a taste of what I would like to happen year round.

I also ordered a huge amount of cotton yarn because I have an idea of spring and summer items I want to make. I think I have finished the yarn buying for the moment – my looking at yarn websites notwithstanding – and I want to go on a yarn reduction diet. Unless I need it for an order, I am going to work from my stash. 

The last post saw me making a Lenny Kravitz blanket scarf. This is Steve wearing it. I dropped it off to him and he was more than willing to pose. As we speak, someone else ordered one and I am doing the crocheted version of it in eggplant. I have both patterns written but not formalized. That’s something to work on.

Because January was something unexpected, I am going to be busy until mid-February. We will see if the good vibes continue into February. If it does, I’ll be able to say I didn’t see that coming, either. 

The things I do.

I was at StitchCraft – the knitting group in Knitsville – and I was looking at what everyone was making and it hit me that I knit for my shop while everyone else knits for themselves or as gifts for someone else.

Now, I love that I can make a living knitting and designing. That’s a great gig. But when I see the sweaters, shrugs and other 

 

pieces of clothing that were being made around me, I couldn’t help but think I was perhaps a little…well…boring with my knitting. And then I remembered I designed and knit this. It came to me as I was uploading a pattern to my Ravelry shop. It occured to me I haven’t written this pattern or the pattern for a infinity scarf.

Yes, this is the hat worn by Dante Alighieri of Dante’s Inferno fame. This was a custom request and the client offered to pay me $20 more if I would send him photos of the hat in progress.

OK. So, I’m going to cross boring off the list. The things I do can sometimes be routine and there is a business aspect to it because it is a business. But it isn’t boring. All that means is I need to branch out into some other territories and that is already happening. Over the past few days, I’ve been uploading a pattern a day to Ravelry. I’m up to two dozen there are four more I have to do of existing patterns and then the three that are part of the latest collection.

I will have to write this pattern and the one for the scarf. I went looking through my pattern notes and didn’t see any for either or them. Really strange but I will get that done. I have a collection coming that will have four or five patterns in it. There’s no reason two of them can’t be this hat and the cowl. I sold the dante hat twice and it was not boring to make. I will have to make it again for the pattern. I definitely will not be bored.

I Don’t Get It

Let me say there are knitters and crocheters of all kinds here in Knitsville and they can create anything from the most fabulous sweaters to knitted boobs for cancer patients. It’s all good work and there’s lots to admire.
But for the love of all that’s holy, what is this thing about socks?
I’ve knit one pair of socks because I heard knitting socks was so, so something and a knitter had to experience it to believe how magical it was.

I cast on, did all the work and when the sock was done, there was this sense of…what’s all the fuss about? From what I read from other knitters, it was like discovering fire. For me it was discovering I could knit – which I already knew I knew. I figured maybe the euphoria didn’t come because I only knit half a pair. Maybe it came with knitting the pair of socks. Knit the other one and when I was done, I was like ‘wow, did it twice and came away with the same feeling but only twice as much.

I don’t get it. Sock knitters seems to have a joy that escapes the rest of us and no other knitted thing brings that much acclaim from knitting brethren. People will ooh and ahh over an intricate sweater but let someone upload a photo of a striped sock and people think they invented color. I am always amazed.

The closest I think i am going to come to making another sock is knitting a Christmas stocking. That is on my futures knitting list. I will knit more than one but I won’t knit a pair of them. I already feel a little excited about that. But for some reason, knitting the regular sock holds no joy.

Ah well, we don’t judge in Knitsville. We accept, not merely tolerate, so if you don’t think sock knitting is the greatest thing since sliced bread – well, you can still enjoy toast.

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Naturally when one knits (crochets) for hours at a time, one ends up with…something. A hat, or a scarf or blanket or something. And if one knits (crochets) for hours at a time every day; you get a lot of somethings.

When one has a lot of somethings and one has an Etsy shop, then one needs to create a section called ready to ship so those somethings can go to new homes and be used and loved.

The Wedding Day Bridal Shawl $65

There are several items which can and should go to new places and meet new people. There are hats and scarves and shawls.

The Man Knit Scarf in Mosaic $25

I make pretty things. I make useful things. So, I guess I make pretty useful things as well. That’s the blessing within the blessing. It’s the act of knitting I love and it’s an additional blessing that things turn out so well.

But it does make for a house filled with finished projects and there are just so many that can be given away. I do give some away. My search serves as a station for people between housing and I give some items there. I have given each of my brothers and sisters an afghan. Various other places, too. Yet there is enough for a section in the shop.

The Stocking Cap $45

I suppose I would feel differently about knitting and crochet if there weren’t such lovely things at the end of it. I would not be content doing what I did when I first learned, which was ripping out my knitting and starting again. I did because I didn’t have any more yarn. I now have room filled to overflowing so I can knit to my heart’s content. 

All of it works together, I suppose, though it is still the doing and not the having done that brings me the most joy. But that’s symbiotic. I get to do the knitting. You get to do the wearing of it.  

Africa Inspired Accessories and Decor

 

“I have loved no part of the world like this and I have loved no women as I love you. You’re my human Africa. I love your smell as I love these smells. I love your dark bush as I love the bush here, you change with the light as this place does, so that one all the time is loving something different and yet the same. I want to spill myself out into you as I want to die here.”
Graham Greene – The End of the Affair

I have always been a little obssessed with Africa. Though I have no desire to get on a plane for more than 3 hours at a time – and that’s pushing my limits – I might do it to see Africa.
Until that moment comes, I am making do with creating Africa inspired accessories for body and home. I did a little research on Kente cloth and pulled the colors from there and have kept them in mind as I began work.
The first item that will come out is an afghan. It’s a beautiful geometric with blocks of bold color.  I made one years ago and gave it as a wedding present. I don’t  have a photo of it but this version is new and improved because I am knitting it to be reversible!
The colors I’ve chosen for this one: black, gold, cranberry, olive green, medium blue and deep purple. Each color has a meaning in Kente cloth colors:
Blue: Big spaces
Gold: preciousness
Green: they symbol of life
Red: Sacrifice
Purple: Women
Black: spiritual energy
I am enjoying it immensely. It will take about 6 weeks to make as a custom piece but I believe it to be worth the wait for such a bold piece.

The africa inspired knits will be available at designbcbin the fall of 2018.

The Color Purple

“I think it pisses God off if you walk by the color purple in a field somewhere an don’t notice it.” Alice Walker

it should make the supreme being upset. Who does not notice purple when it is in the room or in a field? It’s not even demanding – it’s commanding. You just see it.

They say purple is the color of royalty and i can certainly understand why someone of regal stature would claim it as their own.

It was Elizabeth Tudor, Liz the first, who claimed it for royal wear. The dye to make the color was quite expensive and that would put it out of reach to those who were not rich already so why not make it even more exclusive?

Luckily, the dye is more readily available and even us everyday folk can indulge and wear it whenever we want. It is a bold and beautiful color. When I knew I was going to work with specific colors, there was no doubt purple was going to be one. In seventh or eigth grade all my clothes were purple. While I have expanded my wardrobe colors, purple remains firmly in place.

Other than the textured scarves shown here, I have several other purple items completed or in the works.

Expect to see purple in hats, afghans and other scarves. I may even do a purple hooded scarf. I can’t believe I haven’t done one so far. There’s a purple cowl on one of my crochet hooks. I look forward to showing it along with the long scarf.

There is a way to wear purple and a way not to. You can use it as a main color and pair it with something white or black. You can even go Viking and wear it with gold but use reason.

You want to be careful about wearing head to toe purple. Unless you’re Prince – and no one is.

  

Man Knits – Fall 2018

I, with a deeper instinct, choose a man who compels my strength, who makes enormous demands on me, who does not doubt my courage or my toughness, who does not believe me naive or innocent, who has the courage to treat me like a woman. – Anais Nin

Knitting for men can sometimes be a thing. You have to get the color right. You have to get the texture right. And there has to be a certain amount of function and form. Unless he’s really into the fashion part of being dressed, practical goes a long way down the success road.

You also have to get past the whole ‘boyfriend sweater’ thing where you never knit a sweater for your boyfriend because that dooms the relationship. I never knit a sweater for any boyfriend and the relationships ended anyway but I’ve also never knit a sweater for Mr. Honey and it’s been more than 20 years with him….so

I know I am often asked if I have hats, scarves, etc. made for men so it’s about time I fulfilled that request.

Here’s a sneak peek at one of the scarves coming for the new Man Knits section in the shop. It has texture, color, form and function – and you can get it for him but keep it for yourself.

There will be more than a dozen choice of the Textured scarf available ranging from $21 – $32 from acrylic to acrylic/wool blends. Available fall 2018.

Also in the works are two Man Knit hats and at least one other scarf option. Of course, women should feel free to don any of them and have them in their own wardrobe. I suspect that might be the case anyhow. Men have been known to buy for themselves. I just created a scarf for a guy who’s jetting off to England. So maybe he should buy it and resign himself to handing it over to her.