As promised

Turns out there were more than 100 photos on the camera, most from the mini photo shoot with niece B for my Etsy shop. I am not posting them all here. You can thank me later. 🙂

There might have been a few comments like “How many of these button hats have you got there, anyway?” But she was a good sport.  🙂

Surprise! I also had these , ready to be photographed.

She turned the camera on me, and it seems she takes a good photo on both sides of the camera. This is the golden waves wrap that I worked on all fall. Still need some close ups of it, but we have these now.

 

And just because, here’s one more button hat for you.  It’s one I would not be sad to have to keep.   Photo is fuzzy but the hat isn’t.  🙂

blue-bird-for-web-1

 

Did I mention this wasn’t all the photos I have for you?  Here’s what I was knitting this weekend, taken Saturday:

wips-in-progress-for-web

That’s my Hap for Harriet, nearing the half way mark, the Maluka which goes on the road with me, and a new work in progress, a cabled slouch hat for my coworker Bobbi.  She has ordered a hat, cowl, and fingerless gloves for her daughter’s birthday. I finished the hat Sunday, and started in on the cowl.  Here’s a close up of the hat:

bobbi's-hat-for-web

Bobbi is a wonderful person to knit for, as she lets me guide her yarn choice. And she pays me. 🙂  We went with MadelineTosh for this set – Vintage for hat and gloves, Home for the cowl.  Both are in the color way Whiskey Barrel, which is a rich brown with black, blue, and green highlights along with the shades of brown.  It looks really nice on the hat, but on the seed stitch cowl, it is incredible, perfect choice for the pattern. I don’t get any remuneration for waxing eloquent about this yarn, wish they would shower me with free yarn, but they don’t. It is one of my favorite commercial yarns, the colors are wonderful, the yarn is soft as can be.  Home is loosely twisted so you get the softness of the wool really coming through. The Vintage is a tighter twist, which is good for the hat and gloves.  And you know if you have been following for a while that I love the sock yarn.  I have been wearing lots of socks made from it, and they are soft and warm.  It’s worth trying if you haven’t already.

Here’s a phone photo of the yarn that arrived Saturday. The phone camera seems to highlight blues, but it is pretty close to the real color.

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Oh and this blue silk wool blend hopped into my online shopping cart for an MKAL I am doing in April. Already had the beads (by some miracle.) Just sitting about twiddling my thumbs waiting for April 1 and the first clue. Maybe not… maybe I am knitting everything else to get ready.  🙂

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Besides knitting this weekend, we did the usual chores on Saturday.  I went off to Belfast to get some birthday presents for Mom, and A did the local chores.  She went to the PO for me, and guess what else came in the mail?

It seems I won a blog giveaway last week, and the prize arrived Saturday.  It was something of a joint giveaway – Knitting in France and Sarah Inskeep combined efforts, so while I entered on Sarah Inskeep’s blog, the prize I won came from Knitting in France.

 

 

It is a hand dyed sock blank, a project bag and hand-made stitch markers.  I entered because I am intrigued by the idea of a sock blank.  It is two strands of sock yarn knit up into a rectangle, then dyed.  So what you get is two completely identical lengths of yarn for sock knitting.  The two socks should be the same when you are done, with no wondering where the color changes, where the half way point is, etc.  This one is dyed a pretty turquoise blue.  In honor of winning I MIGHT have picked up a new tiny Addi sock needle – 8 inch circular, size one. After all, I was at the yarn store (Heavenly Socks) in Belfast on Saturday getting Mom a present.  Yep, Mom.  I swear it.

Brother N came by Saturday late in the day to pick up the bed that has been stacked against our dining room wall for a few weeks.  He was over at Mom’s and since she lives about halfway between us, he figured he would come over the rest of the way to get the bed.  He is going to refinish and reglue it and use it in his guest room/son’s room.  The bed is a nice piece of furniture that has been well used.  It was my grandmother’s, as near as I can figure, she got it around 1921-22.  I got it in the late 60’s early 70’s and it has been moved, stored, moved and used ever since.  But it really is too big for our guest room, so when Mom offered her pull-out love seat, we decided to make the change.  I offered the bed to N because I knew he would take good care of it and appreciate it, and that one of his three kids would either use it or take their own furniture when they move out, leaving a gap.  None of his kids have made a move in that direction, but I know they will eventually.  🙂

We had breakfast with Mom and B Sunday in Belfast, which is sort of half way between us.  It was nice to see them and give Mom her presents only a week late. Since she was away last weekend, we had a bit of extra time.

And in between all of this, the reason I got so much knitting done?  BASKETBALL!  It’s March Madness, the games have started and the TV has barely been off.  We watch all the women’s games that ESPN will show us, and the men’s games when there are no women’s games on.  There are bragging rights on the line here, as well as cash for yarn money.  Or if I lose, power tools.  🙂  I won’t lose, I chose UCONN.  Like the rest of America.  But as an alum, what else could I do? I just wish they didn’t play so late.  I am still not adjusted to the time change.

Here’s one last picture for you – what I found when I left the house yesterday morning.  Happy spring!  Got to work a bit late, and we closed at ten.  Hardly worth the trip, but I am glad for the day off. It gave me time to clean up the camera and write you a nice long post! And I keep telling myself, March snow doesn’t linger.  The 8-9 inches this turned out to be will be gone in a few days.

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A month of news, with photos

I can’t believe it’s been so long since I got you caught up on what we are up to!  It has been a rather crazy month – bookended by holidays, filled with family visits and parties, a crazy amount of knitting for the holiday pop-up shop, shopping, and finally, vacation this week, and we both have nasty colds.  It never fails that when we make plans to get through big chores during vacation, someone’s health suffers.  Still, we have managed to get things done that need to be done, and so have time to just lie about and enjoy ill health.

This month has included thanksgiving and gingerbread house decorating:

 

Followed by some major furniture moving the next day.  This buffet is an immense solid piece that was my great, great grandmother’s.  It holds the many many dishes that my grandmother gave me over the years.  We hardly ever use any of them, because A is nervous about using the “good” china, but every now and then I break it out.  Thanksgiving is one of those times.  But I have never had it all out at once, as we had to do to move the buffet. It is a little overwhelming, all these dishes for two people.

moving the buffet 2

Oh, and these were in there as well.  Not the pumpkin, but everything else.  The white and gold dishes were another great-great grandmother’s, the clear glass ones were given to me on my 40th birthday by my mother’s aunt – a wedding gift to her in the thirties.

moving the buffet 1

With the buffet out of the way, we can move the table to the wall, which opens up the dining area quite a bit.  The table comes out far enough that the light is not a hazard to navigation.  It is easy to pull out when we need to fit more people around it.

 

moving the buffet after

Where did we put the buffet?  We moved it to the living room section of the room, against the big wall, behind where all those people were sitting at Thanksgiving.  The couch used to live there, but now lives across the room.

I took this picture before the move was finished, because I loved the shadows on the wall. The sun is so low, it shines in at that angle at about 2 pm. No leaves on the trees, the lines are so pretty.

shadows1

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Then it was time for the holiday pop-up shop in Bucksport, Creatively Maine to open.  The open house was the Sunday night after Thanksgiving – I too lots of photos, but that is because all of the crafts and arts were so amazing, but more than that – the fact that Sonja was able to take the work of 53 artists and in TWO days create this space from a plain white box.  So, here are some of the pictures I too that evening.  The neat thing is that every time I go in, it is different – as people buy things and stock gets replenished, she rearranges to fill gaps, and so it always looks fresh and amazing.  And in about two weeks it will all be gone, packed up and cleaned out.

open house 1open house 9open house 10open house 11

All of this jewelry is made with eggshells.  Yep, eggshells.  She raises chickens and one day got the idea of painting and dying the shells and making jewelry.  She does something to it so that it doesn’t break easily, and they are actually quite lovely.

open house 4open house 3

Here are some of my things – and some one else’s hats as well.  (The large black and white one did not stay on the little head very long, she switched it out the next day.  🙂 )

open house 2open house 6open house 5

You can see some of my shawls hanging on the rack in the background of this shot – I put three in the shop, including an Estonian lace one that had a (for me) high price tag on it. Funnily enough all were some shade of blue-green.  I kept all the other ones I knit this year, and parted sadly with these three.  🙂

open house 7open house 8want this

This window is on my “really want and don’t know what I would do with it” list.

open house 12

From my frame of reference, the shop has done really well.  I sold several hats, and two of the three shawls, including the Estonian lace one!  I also had a custom hat order from a guy who saw the TV coverage of the opening, spotted my hats in the background and came in to buy one.  He was disappointed to find that the one he wanted he had only seen from the back, and it was a woman’s hat.  So I knit him up one without the button flap and button.  🙂  There is still about ten days to go, but I expect the big sales will be done tonight when the shop closes. My yarn stash now has a bit of cash in it, which is good.  And I have a nice sized bag of yarn for making hats and shawls, which I will work on this year so that I have a bigger inventory ready to go and won’t have to spend every waking minute in October and November making hats.  🙂 Having the shawls sell well also feels really good – vindication – they are beautiful AND practical and people will buy them.  I’ll make more, and try to brace myself to part with them.

Onward….

We got our tree last week, and decorated it this week. A declared that anything we don’t put out for Christmas decorations this year is going out the door, so I kind of overdid the ornaments, lol.  I also decided she is wrong.  Anything that doesn’t get put out this year gets reviewed and possibly given away next year.  But not definitely.  I like to mix things up a bit.

 

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So that brings us up to date – the house is decorated, the presents are bought and wrapped, the Christmas cards were mailed Tuesday (just a BIT late!) and we are sitting around this Christmas Eve wondering if we will be well enough to go to Mom’s tomorrow for the big festivities… I think I will be, but not sure about A  which will mean my day there is abbreviated, as hers was last week for her family gathering.  That was different – I participated in the Yankee Swap by cell phone pix and text.  It was fun, but not the same.

But while we wait , sniffle, and hack, I can work on some deadline-free knitting –  I’ll finish this up, make a hat to match, then list it on Etsy.  THEN I will get back to the things I was making last September… 🙂

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And a post from me would not be complete without a few cat photos – Zumba has been particularly cute this month.  🙂 She loved checking out the bags that came in on Thanksgiving, they all smelled so good!

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She is finally growing hair on her belly – guess we solved her food allergies at last. She loves to stretch out and show it off in front of the fire.

cover girl

Happy Christmas to all!

Zumba will never be an internet star and other random things

Why hello there.  Wondering where I have been?  Me, too!

Actually, I have been knitting like a fiend.  Inventory was due at Creatively Maine yesterday, and I wanted more hats.  Always more hats!  I finished knitting the Charleston Sweater, and I was pretty happy with it, except I worry the neck opening is too big.  If it is, I know how to fix it, just pull out the crocheted edging and redo it, with fewer stitches, and see how that works.

I delivered it to A’s office Friday, haven’t heard from the Mom, I hope she remembered to stop in the office to get it!

It has been a long time since I posted, I know.  One of the things I did last weekend was drag A and her sister L to the Maine Harvest Festival.  This is like the worlds largest farmers market.  It is all things produced in Maine, mostly with things grown in Maine, but I noticed a few interlopers in the craft area. Lots of food! The past few years, it has been a crazy wild place to try to enjoy – the event is held in Bangor at the Cross Insurance Center – a huge new venue for theater, music, and sports.  The booths start in the hallway as you walk through to get to the arena.  The arena is full of vendors.  Then there is a twisted path back to a ballroom, that was also filled with vendors. Usually it is so crowded you can’t move, and truthfully, I have wormed my way in, raced to my cranberry lady and raced out because I hate crowds.

This year we tried something new, we went on Sunday morning, because in past years we have waited around the block on Saturday morning to get in.  It was a brilliant move. No line, no waiting.  We were able to visit all of the vendors, sampling many delicious foods that way, and we of course bought a few things.  One Lupine was there selling some beautiful yarns, and I got one skein to make a surprise hat as a gift. Great restraint, I think! Just one skein!

Then it was back to the knitting for me.

That is what I did all week long, and Thursday night I tagged everything, made my inventory list and sat back to think about what it was I was working on before all this craziness took hold.  🙂

Today, A and I went to Ellsworth to a church craft fair – smaller than we expected, but saw some vendors I know, so it was fun.  Then we went out to lunch, and ran into L with a friend, so stayed longer than we had expected, chatting.  A bit of Christmas shopping and a trip to the big grocery store and we got home before dark!  Woo hoo, a whole day done.

We are on vacation this week – I expect a flurry of cleaning, and some knitting in between, as we have A’s family coming for Thanksgiving dinner.  Niece B will come here for her college break, and that means cleaning her room and making her bed.  She happens to sleep in the bed I use for blocking, so it is good she wasn’t here last week! But I am trying to keep it kind of slow as we go.  Monday we have dual car appointments, so will spend some time in Bangor, but other than that, it is quiet until Thursday.

Even though I wasn’t online, I did take some photos – here you go!

First up. the baby sweater.  I went with white buttons in the end. After an hour in Joann’s running from button aisle to front window.  🙂  They had some pretty lavender buttons that looked nice and were the right size, but they were shaped like roses and I thought they would be hard for little fingers to manage.

Rose's-sweater-for-web

These are some of the hats I have made this week.  Not all, but all I got photos of! The button is a local potter’s work – I love the little barnacle!  I have two more of them, one might be on a hat for me.  🙂

hats-for-webwhite-hat-for-web

This is what I am working on now – another pixie hat.

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A quick shot of the Harvest festival goodies…at least the ones that made it home!

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Then a few of the morning shots at the bridge.. it got light when we changed the clocks, but it is already growing darker in the mornings.

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This next one, if you notice – the bridge work is finally done!  I had to pull over and get out for this last shot of this morning scene.  I was a bit later than normal, it was probably 7:30 when I took this shot.  🙂  I’ll have to find another morning photo to share my November mornings with you all.

It wasn’t until I saw all of these together that I realized how gray November has been.  Come back, summer!

Bridge-for-web

Here’s a special treat for you guys – A has been thinking and thinking about a project, and she finally had time and energy to build the first one.  It is a waste basket that is designed to perfectly fit empty pellet bags!  We have so many, and it drives us crazy that they don’t fit in a standard waste basket. She is going to work out her costs in materials and time, and make a few to sell – hopefully at our local pellet stove dealer, but also I might have some on Etsy.  The top lifts off to change the bag, but fits tightly enough to hold the bag in place when in use.  Isn’t she clever?  (Yes, she knows she has to plug up the screw holes, this one was to see if it worked and if I liked it.  :-))

pellet-basket-for-web

 

pellet-basket-for-web-2

I’ll leave you with this little treasure.  Not a great photo, but it shows why Zumba will never be an internet star.  She is completely unafraid of a cucumber.  For the record, Allie is also not afraid, but I don’t have a picture of her placidly sniffing it.

Zumba-and-cucumber-for-web-1

I’ll try to be better about keeping in touch now that the knitting pressure is off for a bit.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Home on a Tuesday

This week will be busy, but today and tomorrow are days at home. Which means I got to watch the season finale of Downton Abbey this morning – WOW!  No spoilers here, in case, like me, you tape and watch at a more convenient time, but it had a whole lot that was interesting.  🙂 All set up for next season.  I heard on the news this morning that Maggie Smith says next season is her final one.  I hope they don’t try to replace her – just kill her off (dramatically, with some deathbed straightening out of her granddaughters, of course) Because Maggie Smith is just the perfect Dowager Countess, I can’t imagine anyone else doing it.

I also finished another black and white hat.  I might have it out of my system.  🙂  I like this one, it is very textured and to me, at least, IS the Maine woods in winter, which was my goal.  I think I will keep this one, though, not sell it or send it away.  I haven’t made myself a new hat in a while, and we all need more hats, right?

snow in woods hat version 2

snow in woods hat version 2 in window

Me, looking out at those cold Maine woods, in my warm cozy hat.

snow in woods hat version 2 top

I will remember how cool the top came out next time I am making a hat, I really like the dark lines the decreases made.

Now, back to my tinier knitting.  Only three WIPS on the needles right now, which is still one more than my rule allows, but I am OK with that.

We have slow slippery blue linen with beads.

blue linen 3 3

We have a green and cream necklace, for when I just have a minute.

green necklace 3 3.

Here’s a close up of it.

green necklace close up 3 3

We have the fabulous baby sweater which is cruising right along now.

Charleston 3 3

I took it to book group last night, and it grew a couple of inches.  Amazing what dedicated time can do for a project. (By the way, I was wearing my red business casual socks and received some sincere compliments, which I much appreciate.  I do have the best sock wardrobe in town, I have to say.  🙂 )

We read the Orphan Train, and the reviews were mixed.  All of us agreed it was a good, fast read, and that we had no clue the orphan trains existed.  And how we might not ship kids off on trains any more, but we still need to work to figure out good systems to protect them. Not everyone liked the writing, however, or how some things felt contrived and abrupt.

Next up – Bill Bryson’s One Summer.  Which I need to go see if the Library can get for me…in time to read it before the end of the month.  🙂

Sometimes I think that I should resign from book group – it is far away (an hour or more, on a clear night) and I often don’t get to finish the books, so feel sort of dull.  But then we have a night like last night – interesting women gathered around a fire with good treats, having fun conversations, brining our own experience to bear on the conversation.  It is worth the drive.

Today I have a few errands to run and a grant to work on, between bouts of knitting.

Life, as they say, is good.

Look what I made!

Without flash, you can see the design better.

blue angora hat 1

With flash, you can see the color better.

blue angora hat 2

I used a whole skein of my precious wool/angora blend from Hidden Brook Fibers, in Stow Maine.  It is sport weight, I held it double, and used every last inch of it.

The chevron pattern is in seed stitch, over 90 stitches.  I would be happy to share notes on how I did it if anyone else wants to recreate it. Just pop me a note and I will send you details.

Don’t you just love how soft it is?  Look at that halo!

the hat

There is a blog I follow, slipped stitches weblog, the author of which writes screamingly funny posts about her knitting adventures.  The fails often make the pages more than the conquests, but her writing is what makes it fun.  The other day I left her a comment that I was embarking on an adventure the likes of which she writes about.

The woman (let’s call her S) who runs the little shop that has so nicely carried my things the past few weeks asked me if I could knit a hat for her to give a friend, a woman I have never met.  She had bought one of my hats, and wondered if one could be had with a floppy brim. S knows that I am wiling to try most things, decided to order one for her friend.  Here’s what she told me.

There is a netflix show that has a woman wearing a hat with a floppy brim that she likes.  Her friend has brown hair and bright blue eyes, so either something gray or blue, no green, please.

I did what any sane woman would do and lost myself in Ravelry for hours, using the search “brimmed hats”

There are some.  🙂

I was really curious how one gets a knit brim to not be hanging all around one’s head so that one looks like a blind Gilligan.  It turns out it is milliner’s wire.

I decided I didn’t want to fiddle with that if I could avoid it, but I printed out a free pattern using the wire.  Then I found a free pattern with the brim tacked up rakishly and printed that as well.  I took them into see S, and she ADORED the one that I wanted to make anyway.   Check it out here.

Only:

She didn’t want the pleated accent on the side.  And she wants it pretty fast.

No problem – I don’t have to learn a new technique, right?  I’ll just make the hat.  Blue or gray.

So I merrily came home and went stash diving.  I have no blue or gray worsted weight yarn in a quantity sufficient to make the hat.  I have blue and gray sport weight and blue and gray bulky.

I have other hat patterns that call for bulky, so I know my gauge, and it should be easy to adapt the pattern.  I settled right in with my gray yarn (because I have lots of it), calculator, pencil and needles.  All evening I knit away, working hard to forget that I hate seed stitch exactly as much as I hate 1×1 ribbing (because isn’t it the same damned thing when you are knitting it?) and I made that hat.  I worked out the decreases on the new number of stitches and I finished it last night.

Epic fail.

The brim was too big and floppy, The hat itself fit fine except it was a couple of inches short. So the whole floppy thng perched on top of my head, looking hideous and not keeping anything much warm.

I ripped it out.  With Lamb’s Pride Bulky, you get to do that once before the yarn is fit only for cat toys.

This morning, I got right back at it.  New numbers.  New way to decrease. New hat. 25 rows at least before decreasing at crown.

It’s not done yet, but I can see that it is much better.  I’ll keep you posted and show a photo of the end product as soon as it is done. And maybe I will make it again in blue, maybe with the pretty pleats?

I know I am not as funny as Slipped Stitches,  but I learned you don’t need to be funny to make a mess with yarn.  🙂

Knitting update

I promised you an update about knitting, and here it is.  🙂

Let’s start with the Knitting Sarah’s new thing for this year, which is not actually new for her – a shot each day of what is on the needles. I think I can commit to taking a photo a day, but I might not blog them each day.  Don’t worry, I will a.) catch up regularly and b.) blog about other stuff, too.

Here’s yesterday’s shot:

purple hat

Technically, it wasn’t on the needles when I took it but that is what I knit yesterday.  These button hats go really fast, if I don’t stop in time, they hop right off the needles before I can get a shot.That happened again today…

purple and gray hat

Another button hat – this one with the leftover purple, and a gray brim.  I can get a whole hat plus the crown of a second hat out of two skeins of Lamb’s Pride Bulky, so I try to keep a supply of neutrals on hand to use up the half hat.  then, there is always a bit left over.  I’ll show you another day what I do with that.

hat for mere

This is also on my needles today – and really still is!  It is another hat, a modified Alpine Topper (pattern available on Ravelry from Halcyon yarn).  I am making this one out of two yarns held together – one a sock weight silk merino blend from Cloudlover named after Lady Sybil of Downton Abbey – who could resist? – and the other a light natural gray which is angora/merino blend, also light weight, I think officially a sport weight. I am holding them together so that they come up to a worsted weight, and let me tell you, it is the softest worsted weight I have ever touched. And it shimmers! The mods to the pattern are: lighter weight yarn, so more stitches.  No carrying a second thread to make a lining – this hat will be soft and warm and able to be worn indoors or out.  It’s for Cousin M unless something goes wrong with it (as did my first try which came out way too small) and I hope it won;t make her itch, but if it does, I think her beloved J will find a use for it.  🙂

Now, more updating:

Here is the 26th pair of socks, all done!  And they are NOT this color.  They are much brighter, almost a turquoise blue.

sws #26

I have even already crocheted the 5 squares I need from them for the sock leftover blanket, which is coming along.  I need to get more pictures of my progress, but here are a couple of what it looked like a few weeks ago – almost all the squares in a big pile, then as I sorted them to figure out what went where.

almost all the squares

sorting squares

Hard to believe that each color is a different pair of socks,and that most of them are in my closet and on my feet.  🙂

Then hats – hats, hats and more hats.  The shop sold the two I originally put there, so last Friday I went off to Bangor and bought a lot more yarn to make more.  I don’t know if they will sell this week or not, the shop closes soon, but I do know that I want to keep going with this whole retail thing, and so I need inventory.

The blue and green were delivered last week, I’ll take the two purple ones over there today.  It was REALLY hard to use that blue button, isn’t it sweet?  It is a piece of porcelain, tumbled and drilled into a button by the same folks who make my favorite granite buttons.

green hat 1

blue hat 1

Here‘s a photo from the shop’s Facebook page, showing my hats (and a necklace in the background) on display – pretty and warm, right?

Still plugging away on the lace projects – sweater and scarf.  Both show progress but no photos recently.  I’ll get some over the next few days,though, I promise.  🙂

I SOLD SOMETHING!

I don’t even know what, but I am so excited!!

A is home this week, and came back from running errands to say the shop called, I sold some things, should they mail the check?  And did I have more hats? (So I assume the hats sold, but I don’t know if that is all or not.)

CAN YOU BELIEVE IT, I HAVE NO MORE OF THOSE HATS AND NO YARN TO MAKE MORE???????

I have a closet full of yarn, but none of it bulky. That hat is bulky yarn held double.  I wonder if that is the same as worsted held tripled?

I guess I will dig around tonight and come up with something – I can make some different hats out of worsted, and see what happens.  How lucky that I ordered two skeins of the soft wool/angora blend I discovered this fall, and they have already arrived.  So I can make a lovely little beanie with that and some worsted. The really nice part is that I can whip up a hat or two in an evening (OK a long evening) so I might have a few for A to drop off tomorrow.

I need to start looking at other shops which are open for more than a few weeks. Maybe I can put things in a few more places.

I can’t believe I sold something!!! In a  SHOP!!!

Craft fair update

OMG I am exhausted.  How do people do this every week?  It is not easy talking to all those strangers for hours on end.  🙂

However, I think it basically went well.

What I learned:

If I am going to keep on doing this, I need a better display, especially for the jewelry.

(These photos are from set up night.  I tweaked a bit, but this is basically it. It looks like a jumble sale! A made me the hat poles, and I like them.  Just need to work on the rest of it.)

.  craft booth

craft booth 2

I need to figure out a way to highlight that my things are made with really great fibers, many locally sourced. Also, the specialty touches like local stone buttons, local fiber.

I need lights, preferably true color ones.  The lights in here were very yellow, and made all my reds look rusty, and my blues lacked life.

People shopping at craft fairs want bargains.  Have a bargain basket.

People shopping at craft fairs are often buying gifts and it doesn’t matter if they love the hat and look adorable in it, if it is for a gift, they will hem and haw and often walk way.

Don’t make what I don’t like.  The hats that sold were primarily the ones that I thought “Well, if this one doesn’t sell, I will be OK with that, because I really like it and will wear it”  the ones I knit to have more universal appeal are sitting in a bag in the car right now.

Those (danged) ruffled scarves sell like hot cakes.  Sadly, the lady at the booth next to me had HUNDREDS of them for $5 a piece, and all day I listened to her extolling the virtues of them and how the price is a steal, doesn’t even cover the price of the yarn.  Well, good for her (she sold nearly all of them) and bad for me sitting beside her with $40 beautifully cabled wool/silk scarves which will actually keep you warm.  But not good present material, apparently!

My products have a demographic.  It might not be people who shop at craft fairs.

So, how did it go?  For the most part, great.  I sold 4 hats, which is not a lot, but covered my fee and some yarn, and I have lots of inventory/Christmas presents now.

The jewelry did not sell at all, although the people who did notice it really seemed to like it, they didn’t ask me the price so much as how hard was it to make them, how did I do it, etc.  That was a bummer. I won’t make more until I figure out how to sell these.  Even though I love them, I guess grandmas weren’t sure that kids would like them, and the young women going through didn’t stop and find them in my booth.  See what I learned number 1.

I had fun, my sister and I were glad the other was there (it meant we got bathroom breaks, etc) and we had a nice visit together. The show was not mobbed, but had steady traffic.  C had a good day selling her pottery, she taught me the bargain trick, which I will use in the future – she had a “Bargain shelf” and sold nearly everything she put on it.  She just kept moving things down to it.  Sometimes she would lower the price and sometimes not.  I think she picked up a few customers who understand artful pottery, and is building a following here (it is her second year).

c at craft show

C putting her booth together morning of – she is good!  Set the whole thing up in less than an hour. I wish you could really see her beautiful bowls. They are elegantly shaped, and her glazes are just beautiful.

Highlights?

The man who came in at 9:02 and told me he wasn’t leaving without a hat, it was going to be a cold winter.  He tried a few, and we found a slouchy beanie that made him happy, which made me happy. (He WANTED wool, and saw my hats from across the room!)

Then the woman who spent a long time with my hats, slowly moved over to my sister’s booth, and almost immediately came rushing back.  She has a daughter who is married to a hockey coach, and so sits for hours in ice arenas.  Turns out my sister had a big warm muff and scarf that matched one of my hats.  She bought the lot.

Then there was a couple looking for presents.  They tried on all the hats.  While they eventually left without buying anything (waiting for a text on colors and sizes) they made my booth fun and vibrant while they were there, and they were very appreciative of  the quality of the work, and the uniqueness of the products.

Lastly? The shy Asian woman who looked, left, came back later and shyly tried on two hats, back and forth for the last ten minutes of the show before choosing a hat.  She looked so happy with the one she chose.

It was a good day, and though I am exhausted, I will do it again.  And I will be thinking about other ways to sell my work.  It is fun to see people in my hats!

First of fall Friday list

This morning is full of errands and running about – I have to go to Cherryfield and get some photos of our quarterly USDA food distribution activities for work, as well as a stereotypical photo of smiling faces and checks passing hands, as we received a nice donation from out of state to benefit 4 food pantries!  So that is how I will start the day.

Then it is back to Ellsworth to drop a check off at the stove store – we should have our new pellet stove by the end of October!

That fun is followed by a trip to the big grocery store, then back to home, with a quick stop to pay the property taxes and pick up the mail.

Once I get home, I will take a knitting break and work on my co-worker’s socks – I had her try them on yesterday, and I am glad I did, she has a very tiny foot, it turns out, so I pulled out a few rows and decreased teh number of stitches from 56 to 48.  Glad I suspected that might happen and put a lifeline in at the end of the toe increases, so it was a pretty simple adjustment.  Making sox this small should go quickly – I am so used to knitting for my Sasquatch sized feet.  🙂

After the break, I hope to work outside for a bit, as it is supposed to just be a fabulous weekend, weather-wise.  I am still getting tomatoes, I can;t believe it!

This weekend, we will be cleaning thoroughly and rearranging the furniture to accommodate our incoming patient and for the winter.  L goes in for her knee replacement on Monday, and we will just be ready for whatever comes our way after that – we don’t know if she is coming here straight from the hospital or going to rehab first.  A took the next two weeks off from work, with just a few little exceptions, and I will take time off to cover those.  After that, we aren’t sure what will be needed, but I will probably be able to take time off or work from home, and we will call on other family and friends if needed.

Sunday, we want to go do something fun and interesting to distract L from thinking about the next few weeks, but we haven’t come up with anything more special than breakfast.  🙂  Hiking and biking are out of the question, of course. too bad, as L loves both of those activities. So we will keep thinking, and come up with something, I am sure.

I’ll also try to get some photos of things I have finished up lately with the needles – there ar elot sof hats done, and I have sewn all those cool buttons on hats, so they are truly finished objects now.

That’s it – I have to run to get the day started.  See you later!

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