People often ask us how we pick the patterns that we knit up for the store. We have a few criteria.
1) Attractiveness. First and foremost, will people want to wear it/knit it/give it as a gift?
2) Achievability. Yes, we could all show off our knitting skizzles and dazzle everyone with our cable/colorwork/lace/brioche work but what good would that do us if the majority of the customers who walk through the door would be sent into paroxysms of inadequacy and insecurity, thinking that there was no way that they could ever produce any of the samples on display?
3) Variety. There are only so many cowls one knitter can do before boredom sets in. We try to spread our samples over a variety of projects based on amount of yarn they need and how fast they can be knit up. Clearly a fisherman’s sweater on size 8 needles takes a lot more time than a cowl on size 19 needles so we have something for someone who’s in for the long haul or someone who has to finish it for that birthday party in two hours.
4) Sellability. Let’s face it, we are in the business of selling yarn so once we have selected patterns according to the first three criteria, we want to see which ones will work best with the yarns in our store.
In this whole process we depend on what interests us individually, customer’s suggestions (or something that someone walked in with that made us sit up and take notice), and of course a knitter’s best friend, Ravelry.
So if there’s anything you’d like to see as a sample, or if you would like to make any suggestions, please share!
The turn of the new year is always about resolutions. Weight loss, taking up yoga, being a better friend/parent/human, facing down that chronic procrastination, paying off debt: these are all great resolutions to make (and – alas! – probably break).
One of the resolutions we frequently hear in the store is to use up all the yarn in your stash and to finish all those WIPs.
Let’s address the first issue: using up stash. Really? Don’t you think there’s a reason for all that yarn being stuffed into bins and under beds and piled into closets? We have all bought things on impulse that never saw the light of day (think Members Only jackets, platform shoes and anything with shoulder pads). This is not to say that all the yarn you’ve been hoarding is bad or unusable but chances are that some of it is. Get rid of it! Give it to a charitable organization or a school or just drop it off at Goodwill. It will eventually get to a good home. Don’t let it weigh you down as you ponder what the heck you were thinking when you bought it and what in God’s name are you going to make with it.
The second issue is all those dang projects on different needles. Now some of us (me) are chronic "starters". That means I love the thrill of a new project but get easily distracted by the next fun thing and sooner or later there are 20+ projects on the needles and people you work with are telling you that you are not allowed to start anything new until you finish something. Anything.
Okay, I am an extreme example but I did actually have a cleansing moment when I decided to go through all my projects and really decide what was not bringing me any joy. Those projects were getting the heave-ho. I managed to frog or just toss 6 projects. I’m sure there are more but it was a start. Not only did it unburden me somewhat but it freed up all those needles as well!
So try not to get weighed down by past purchases or projects. Be brave and take a long hard look at that yarn and those projects.
It might take your mind off that 30 day juice cleanse you resolved to do.
Julie, WY's Do-bee and store wordsmith.