It’s October and in most places, especially here in the Northeast, its the most wonderful time of year. The cool crisp nights, apple cider in the air, leaves a multitude of colors, pure heaven. I love the fall, and not sure I could live anywhere the leaves don’t change colors. So with these crisp nights and cool days one must prepare fashion wise. The standard scarf or cowl comes to mind immediately, but hot right now are wraps or shawls.
So just pursing Instagram as I do, and I see the most amazing shawl I’ve ever seen. Now I’m not a big fan of them, never worn one, or made one for that matter, but this shawl grabbed my attention and quick. So of course now I must find this pattern, and low and behold it’s a free one!!!! The angels sing hallelujah in my head, how can this be, its so amazing AND free. So I immediately add the Tea House Wrap into my Ravelry library for safe keeping. The next day I head to Jo Ann’s to purchase the yarn because this is getting made now!
The pattern calls for Lion Brand Heartland yarn, another sign I’m meant for this pattern, that’s one of my all time favorite yarns. With a little help from my boys I pick, Black Canyon, Grand Canyon, Kings Canyon, Yosemite, and Yellowstone! The perfect fall colors for my perfect fall wrap!
I finish the wrap and its even more amazing than I though it could be. This wrap is so versatile it can be worn in so many ways the possibilities are endless. I convince my bestie that she needs to model it for me,because no justice is done with it on the mannequin, it needs shoulders and arms to wrap around. Check out the pattern here and show me your version.
As a crafter, you create from what you are inspired by. I see a pattern on Pinterest and I must make it. I have people send me pictures, with a quick can you make this?. I love to put my own spin on things. I have a Facebook page, Instagram, Google+, and Twitter account. If your reading this you know I have a blog. I sell on Etsy. In the ever growing and changing world as we know it you have to be connected to keep some what up to date on things, there are a few hashtags I still don’t get.
All those social media sites are great and has allowed me to become fans of and receive fans from across the country to across the pond and into England, Australia, France, Saudi Arabia and other far away places. I am grateful for those fans and new inspirations but it has also allowed me to sell items to those countries. It makes me happy to know that somewhere in Australia a little baby is playing with my Monster Eyeball Rattles.
The great thing about being connected in this way is the people that I have actually met or had a real relevant conversation with. I love that in a crochet group on Facebook I could help walk a beginner through a stitch that they haven’t been able to get or even get feedback on color choices for my own projects. But most of all I’m excited about the new business connections I have made.
Early on I had a friend who does photography and she has the cutest little girls I sent her a few things and she took some pictures. She did a newborn shoot for a high school friend that had twins and asked me to make them something. Her work is amazing and you can find more of her work on her Facebook page Park Avenue Photography. I was asked by a photographer based out of Mississauga Ontario Canada to use my props in her photo shoots. Check out Sweet Spot Photography and if you live in Mississauga or close to it contact her for your photo needs. I also work with a local Buffalo photographer Back Creek Photography based out of Boston NY, (just South of Buffalo NY). You can check out more of their work on their Facebook page. I love all the photos that they send me of my items in action. It can be difficult to imagine something on a baby, and their photos bring my vision into reality. It makes me proud to see my work on a precious little newborn and know that the photographer and new parents are happy with the items. All the pictures in this blog are from these lovely photographers mentioned above.
My other connection is huge to say the least. I was contacted by a friend who was embarking on big life changing decision. She and her husband decided to open a boutique in the heart of Buffalo. She contacted me to be a participant in her store. She purchased a lot of baby items to stock in her store. Everything from hats, to boots, to blankets and baskets. It was the biggest order I had ever received. That order was a defining moment in my little hobby turned business. Yeah I had sold to family and friends, I had about 30 sales on Etsy but according to my taxes I have a net profit for 2 years of $3,100. This boutique order wasn’t anywhere close to that in dollar amount but it was so fulfilling to know that someone on their lunch break could go in and buy a pair of booties and give it as a baby shower gift or keep it for their own child. My shop has become legit! So if you live in the Buffalo NY area head down to Lafayette Square and visit Anne at Boutique in the Square. If you live elsewhere she ships so you can still check out her store and order.
These simple connections have made my shop become so much more that just a shop on Etsy. I couldn’t be more proud of myself and those ladies that I have partnered with. It is a difficult thing sometimes to follow your dreams. But no matter the amount of adversity one faces, in the end its about the goal. I went months without selling a single thing, but it only takes one person to believe in you and your dream. So I challenge you to check out these amazing ladies and their dreams that with your help can be achieved. If you have a business that needs a little love leave a link to your Facebook page, twitter, Instagram etc and I’ll check it out and show it some love. Everyone deserves a shot at their dream. Thank you to those that believed in me and my dream I hope to help others achieve theirs.
I don’t know what it is about bonnets that i’m instinctively drawn to. While aimlessly scrolling through crochet Facebook groups, Pintrest boards, and Instagram feeds the thing that always catches my eye are those adorable looking bonnets.
The other day in my before bed looking session I saw that a friend posted the most adorable looking newborn bonnet. While I say that about most bonnets, blankets, shoes, ok pretty much everything crochet, this one actually was! I followed the link which took me to Raverly where I favorited the bonnet and then purchased he next day. If you have never heard of Raverly, Google it or follow the link because it is by far the best place to find patterns for crochet and knitting. I love it because it stores a copy for you so if you lose your pattern, write on it too much or fold it to many times trying to stuff it in your project bag so its no longer legible (yeah I’ve done it) you can always find another copy in your library.
So off to the stash I went, I chose the prettiest, softest cotton blend white yarn I could find. Now I rarely am drawn to white especially for babies but, I had a vision when I saw this bonnet. The pattern comes in newborn to toddler sizes, I was picturing a newborn photo prop hat with dark colored flowers. I headed back to the stash and chose a dark purple, a dark pink and an olive green for the flowers in a mercerized cotton yarn. So I had my yarn, printed my pattern, grabbed my hook and sat in my favorite spot and twenty minutes later I had the prettiest bonnet I’ve made and three flowers. Have you ever gotten in that one more row, one more color change mode and stayed up way
past bedtime? That is where I was too tired to sew the flowers on even though I wanted to finish right away, I needed sleep.
I had to work the next day so after I got home, made dinner and did my grown up duties I was finally ready to finish the bonnet. I sat down sewed on my three flowers and I had the prettiest bonnet I’ve ever made. I’m absolutely in love with the finished product. I can’t wait to see this bonnet on a newborn Baby girl. The bonnet is called the Penelope Bonnet. If you love the bonnet and want one for the little girl in your life or you are a photographer and want one for photo sessions you can purchase through my Etsy shop. If you are a crocheter and want to make your own bonnet check out Unravel Me on Raverly for the paid pattern.
I’m happy to share my little hobby with you. If you do what you love you they say you never work a day in your life right. Thank you to those who let me do what I love.
So our Sunday started off as a usual Sunday, breakfast some minor cleaning and what to do today questions. The response is…Wait…It’s the sunday after the fourth you know what’s going on. Then it dawns on me every fourth of July weekend Old Fort Niagara has an encampment. It has been our thing to go to this since my son was 2 years old. So we pile into the car and off to the fort we go. Its the same old fort but something about going every year makes it special. We check out the shops and of course I find yarn and that gives me a head shake from my husband and a “really mom you find yarn everywhere we go!” I didn’t buy any it was wool, and if you follow me you know wool isn’t this hooker’s thing. So we make our way to the outer wall and Dimitri notices people up on the wall where DANGER is clearly marked. He wasn’t too happy they were up there, but in the midst of being annoyed they couldn’t read the DANGER sign he saw a cannon, a big one. So we go up the steps and as soon as we get to the top he forgets about the cannon because he sees a boat. Not just any boat but a giant boat. It was docked at the Coast Guard station just below the Fort. He then notices the Coast Guard boats. He asks my husband if we can go look at them. We set off to try to see the boats.
We walk down the hill and just like the DANGER sign but not as clearly marked for an 8 year old is a sign that says US Government property no trespassing. That’s the adult version of DANGER. We tried to tell him that we couldn’t get any closer but he wasn’t having it, and we weren’t having getting arrested. We see a woman walk out and my husband yells to her. She walks up and he asks if our son can look a the boats. She says sure come on down. The joy radiated off of him he nearly skipped down the hill. She explained the giant boat is a research boat from Erie that docks there a few times a year, and not a Coast Guard boat. She took him to their boats and began explaining the different type of boats. She then asked him if he wanted to get on. He looked at me with panic and I said if you want to (he has never been on a boat). He has special needs my baby so new situations sometimes don’t go over well, but he took my husbands hand and went on a boat. She took him to the small SAR boat and explained they use it for search and rescues. She even let him sit in the drivers seat.
She then leads him to a much bigger boat and explains that it is a jet boat and goes real fast. His eyes light up and she says come we can get on this one too. So they get on that one and he looks a bit more scared. But he asks questions about where they take it and other stuff that I couldn’t quite hear because I was busy being nauseous and moving away from the swaying boat. I hate boats! They make me sick and just watching the boats sway was making me not feel so good. But he loved it and when he asked if he wanted to join the Coast Guard he responded yes.
Looking at the pictures made me think I really like the water but hate boats. So my version of exposure therapy, the real therapy didn’t work as I threw up everywhere, was to create a treasury on Etsy of the calm sea with a boat or two or 12. The first photo in honor of the future Coast Guard member is of the Canadian Coast Guard off Prince Edward Island. So check out the photographs that I have complied for you and enjoy a day on the water if you’re not like me and can stomach a trip out.
I was surfing through Etsy today and I came across a photo of a radio flyer wagon in a field of grass. If that doesn’t say summer, I don’t know what does. Summer is a time for fun, no more school, although not as much fun for us parents. It’s a time for lazy days laying in the sun, going to the beach, cooking out, baseball, and so much more. I think of lemonade stands and kids getting dirty.
Although the weather here in Buffalo is a bit bipolar, 83 a few days ago and 66 today, summer is here. School is almost out just a few short weeks, the grass has been mowed several times, the spring blooms are giving away to summer blooms. Soon enough we’ll be watching the fireworks and praying for fall to beat the heat.
Back to that radio flyer, it inspired me to find other summer things on Etsy. Now my 12 slot treasury by no means is all that Etsy has to offer. If you are looking for new summer decorations for your home, a summer hat, a necklace, or maybe just artwork that speaks summer, check out my treasury. If you want a little more go exploring yourself, just type in summer in the search bar. What will you find?
I leave you with a quote from an unlikely source, Mr. Henry Rollins
“We know that in September, we will wander through the warm winds of summer’s wreckage. We will welcome summer’s ghost.”