Saturday, October 13, 2012

Knit One, Meditate Too

Anticipation Anxiety

 If you've stopped by the shop or spoken with me over the phone this past week, you may have noticed that I've been a bit aloof.  I've just completely lost focus with all that's going on in the shop.  I may spend 30 minutes here and there spinning (like the baby alpaca yarn pictured on the left), answering the phone, talking with customers in the shop, packaging orders, knitting, entertaining my increasingly cranky 3 year old, and the list goes on...

Truth is, I may just have trouble prioritizing some days, or other days, I get so excited from the anticipation of what could become of the shop that I lose track of what I was doing.  And then, the internet service went awry.  So not only do I have to run the shop on my iPhone, I have to do a lot of work arounds on things I was already accustomed to doing on the computer.  Simple things like printing out a pattern have become 45 minute tasks, because my printer just does not want to cooperate with the wireless network.  But I'm good at troubleshooting, so IT fixes are no problem for me.  

The good thing is that I've learned to find some easy ways to meditate to calm down my brain.  Most days it works, other days, I just have to tell myself that tomorrow is another day.  What does it mean for me in the long run?  I'm more productive when stressed.  So, I did some refreshing of my crochet skills, which are a lot better than I remember (see crochet hat on the right).  I even taught myself a new spinning technique, the Navajo 3-ply, which has allowed me to finally spin a yarn thicker than lace or fingering weight on my vintage, handmade spinning wheel (see below).

It's weeks like these - the ones that leave me exhausted, crabby, and begging for one extra hour of sleep - that test my resolve, but in the end, I know that I'm doing what I'm meant to be doing.  Even if I have to remind myself of that every few minutes while on hold with a vendor or when pouring over the
books (accounting).

Increasing My Design Expertise

Now, I'm working on design, design, design.  As a business owner, I always have to find new sources of revenue that are low costs to the business.  Designing, which I LOVE to do, is one of them.  Yes, it takes a lot of time and effort to design, but in the long run, there's not much money that is put in to self-publishing, so profit in dollars is maximized.  At least when you look at it from a business perspective.

Because I love creating new things, I will sketch (something at which, let's just say, I'm not very skilled), doodle, or knit things that pop into my head. Just yesterday, I was wracking my brain on what to propose for the Knit Picks designer call that's posted on Ravelry, and I started doodling on graph paper to clear my mind.  What I ended up with was an 8 stitch repeating pattern in fair isle that I can turn into a sweater pattern for another project!  What's the most shocking about that, I've only knit one fair isle design, which was my own, and I absolutely HATED it.  Meaning, I hated knitting the fair isle.  I was asked to design and knit 5 beanie caps with my brother in law's band name on them.  He was impressed with how they turned out, how consistent all of them were ("like factory made!"), and he even kept one.  He actually just wore it the other day.

I finally got an idea for my design while driving home from the shop this afternoon.  It was one of those "a-ha!" moments, making me realize that I had just put too much thought into it.  So we'll see if I can get the sketch and proposal just right and I'm crossing my fingers and toes that it gets accepted, it would mean a lot for me and the shop.

And of course because this is a business...Shameless Plug  :)

Finally, I'm pleased to announce that a few things are in the planning stages for the rest of this year.  First, I'm working on a customer rewards program.  I'm not sure how to roll this out yet, but at the very least it will include volume discounts and loyalty rewards.  We will also be celebrating Small Business Saturday on November 24, the Saturday after Thanksgiving.

I'm still promoting the pre-orders of Addi Turbo and Addi Lace circular needles, including the interchangable sets that are now available in both Turbo and Lace tips.  These are wonderful needles to work with.  They have smooth coating that allows for faster knitting.  Lace tips feature a longer point that eases lace knitting, no matter what gauge yarn and needle size.  As mentioned in the previous blog entry, pre-orders are what allow us to bring new lines into the shop.  Being that we are a small business, it's a little bit more difficult to bring in new brands because of minimum orders required.  Support your local yarn shop by pre-ordering today.  Contact me for pricing and pre-order you Addi needles today.  

No comments:

Post a Comment