Archive for May, 2008

Shop is open!

May 27, 2008

I’ve opened shop finally!  I put the first few items in last night and will be slowly adding items every day or so.  It’s pretty exciting to have it finally stocked and to watch the view counts go up and people add me to their favorites!  Currently, I have a few sets of stitch markers available as well as a skein of hand-dyed sock yarn.  Now the waiting game for the first sale!  (The first official sale from my store, I’ve already done a custom order.)  Now for the pictures you’ve been waiting for:

For sale and soon to be for sale in my shop

 These are the stitch markers that are being listed, a couple are available with a few more coming soon. 


And I hope that second one works.  It’s a collection of the yarns I’ve been dyeing lately.  Pretty!

In other news, I haven’t worked for almost 2 weeks, but I get to go early tomorrow and sleep on their recliners for the morning and then maybe find a quiet spot to knit or edit photos or something.  Basicly, I just have to be at the airport in case they need me.  They usually need me and I end up working, so it’s not too bad.

My house is finally aired out and less smelly!  Sick kitty has been on a canned food diet to help her get better and it stinks!  Especially the things I’ve added to make it smellier so she’ll eat it.  All I could smell for a week was wet cat food and tuna juice.  It made me throw up.  Really.  But luckily, it warmed up for the weekend and I had all the windows open and it was lovely and all is fresh smelling now.  With any luck, sick kitty will be able to go back on her dry food and my house will stop smelling.

My PI shawl is still in progress, but coming along nicely.  It’s turning out really gorgeous and that has been keeping me motivated to keep working on it.  I think if it was boring or dull looking I’d have lost interest long ago.  In fact, I’m going to work on it when I finish this. 

My other tasks are to keep motivating my sister with the graphics and web design, keep researching supplies, and figure out how to get my buyer to pay.  Some Paypal glitches are making it difficult.  It’s been going on for a week now and it’s getting annoying.


Store’s almost ready!

May 21, 2008

I’ve gotten the word that my graphics and possibly my website are ready for action.  I’ve hired my sister to work on these since I have absolutely no clue and she’s informed me that they’re ready and I’ll have them in hand this weekend.  Yay!  I’ll work on my store this weekend and hopefully start putting items in it.  It’s kinda silly, but one of the techniques for selling things on Etsy is to list items slowly.  My plan is to put 3 items in my store initially and then an item a day as much as possible.  (Pending what work does to me and when I’m home.)  So this is very exciting.

My first items will be some stitch markers and hand-dyed yarn.  I’m wrestling with whether or not to list some super cool yarn that I’ve dyed with food dyes.  I think they’ll sell if priced right, so I’ll probably do it, especially since that’s what I really want to focus my store on.  I spent a couple hours last night assembling some really cool stitch markers, pictures of those soon.  I’m also wrapping up my custom job which is taking longer than expected because of sick kitty.  I’m hoping to have it in the mail tomorrow. 

Sick kitty is getting better!  She’s eating better and becoming more and more social.  Sick kitty has been stressing me out for a couple weeks now, so I’m finally able to relax a little. 

I haven’t been to work since I wrote last, but I do have a funny story from the last time I did work.  I was flying with a very new and inexperienced flight attendant who was shocked by the looks the passengers gave her when I was on the PA.  They looked at her as if she was supposed to be talking, but she was just sitting there, looking out the window.  I’m always amused by this because people expect the girl voice on the PA to come from the flight attendant, not the pilots.  It’s especially good when the flight attendant is male.  So next time you’re on an airplane, don’t automatically assume it’s the flight attendant when you hear a female on the PA.

And lastly, I’ve been knitting!  I kinda put it off while I was researching and working on the business, but I really needed something to relieve the stress of sick kitty, so I cast on for Elizabeth Zimmerman’s PI shawl.  I’m using some fingering weight merino of my own coloring and it’s coming out really well.  I’ve made it past the last increase and with 500+ stitches on the needles it’s slowed to a crawl, but it’s still progressing and I’m estimating completion by the end of the weekend.  Pictures coming on that also. 

Road Trip!

May 18, 2008

Road trip details in a second…  First:

Sneaky Pig progress has been slow.  I’ve received an order of low-impact dyes and am excited to try them out, however… I don’t have the right tools quite yet.  I’m looking for a used steamer and pots so I can dedicate them to the dyeing.  I did get most of my custom order done, but ran out of daylight before I could finish, so the next sunny day it should get completed.  And that’s really all to report there.

Work has been kinda slow. I was called in yesterday to fly to an overnight and then ride back as a passenger this morning.  I did have a good crew, so it wasn’t all bad. 

I was worried about my kitty while I was gone.  She was diagnosed with kidney failure last week and after 6 days in the kitty hospital is home and doing OK.  She’s on a bunch of different meds and I had to enlist my mom to take care of her and administer them while I was working, but she seems to be getting better.  I was pretty worried for a while.  Poor little thing.

And if the sick cat wasn’t enough to deal with last week, I also turned 30.  Argh!  To celebrate, I left my kitty in the capable hands of the vet and went on a road trip around Michigan, sampling beers at microbreweries and brewpubs.  It was three days full of delicious beer and good food.  (And a couple yarn stores to boot!)  We ended up visiting 15 different places in 3 days, starting in the Detroit area and working our way north from there up to Oscoda, then northwest to Bellaire, down to Traverse City and following the coast to Holland before heading back home.  I found some new favorites and am really looking forward to the beer festival in Ypsilanti in July.  Yay for boyfriends that take me on brewpub tours even though they don’t drink beer!

That’s all for Sneaky Pig Weekly, hopefully next week I’ll have some good dyeing done and I’ll be able to post some pictures of my wares.  I’m really looking forward to opening my Etsy shop soon to start moving some pretty yarns!

My first sale!

May 8, 2008

I guess it’s not a traditional sale, but I was able to procure a custom order.  I am doing a batch of small skeins of fingering weight yarn for an Etsy user to make doll clothes with.  She gave me some guidance about what she wanted, but I’m also doing some of my own colorways.  Mostly I’m excited about getting paid to do it!  It’s not a huge amount and not what it’s worth.  It will cover the materials and then some, so I’ll basically be working really cheaply. 

In the process of researching and getting things going, I stumbled across a green-living book at Target.  (I love Target.)  I learned a lot from this neat little book and made some decisions about my business.  I’m going to try and make it as green as possible.  I’ve been looking for organic base yarns and researching environmentally friendly dyes as well.  I think I’ve found some of my base yarns, still looking for the fingering weight and I’ve placed an order for my original batch of dyes.  So my yarns will be as green as possible while still being as cool as possible. 

The quest for supplies continues.  I’ve been looking for garage sales to dig through this weekend to find supplies that don’t matter if they’re new.  I’ve also been combing craigslist for used things, but unsuccessfully so far.  I’m looking forward to finding yard sale treasures.

My other activities pertaining to Sneaky Pig Enterprises (cool, huh?) are working on a business plan and working out a records/accounting system.  I’d like to have it all on the computer, but I also like looking at sheets of paper and making notes there.  The computer would be greener and I don’t want any redundancies, but I may configure some sort of hybrid system that has most of my records computer based with some items on paper.  I’m waiting on my tax packets that I applied for yesterday, so that should be exciting when they arrive, can’t wait to deal with that!  And otherwise, more research.  Reading books/magazines/websites, basically anything that pertains or could pertain to what I’m doing.

In other news, my knitting has been non-existent and will probably remain that way until I get some stock built up and all my paperwork in order.  I have some lovely tealy blue handdyed yarn that I’m itching to start EZ’sPi shawl with, but just haven’t had the time.  Haney’s socks have been in time-out for a few weeks now, I should really continue work on them, and all other projects have fallen by the wayside.  My next gift knit is mom’s birthday on June 6, I haven’t worked out what to do and when I do, I’m not telling until she has it. 

Work has also been slow.  I worked last Friday and Saturday, but nothing since.  I found myself in Kalamazoo for Cinco de Mayo, it was pretty fun, enjoyed some Mexican refreshments.  Still haven’t been running, I really need to just register for the race I want to do and make that force me to start training.  Doh!

My First Post.

May 3, 2008

I may be crazy, but I’ve decided to start selling hand-dyed yarn for a profit.  I’ve been researching the heck out of it and think it’s something I just might be successful at.  If not, I’ll end up with a bunch of awesome yarn!    My motivation is two-fold.  My new job is a little more stressful than I planned on (but I still love it) and I’m looking for a creative outlet, and my new job isn’t paying as well as I planned, so it’ll provide a little extra income.  I guess I’ll just blame this insane journey on my job.

A little more about my (slightly) stressful job.  I’m an airline pilot flying for Mesaba Airlines, a Northwest Airlink.  I sit in the left seat, which makes me the captain and while it’s fun, it’s also a fair bit of responsibility.  I often have first officers who have never flown near thunderstorms, landed on a snowy runway, or just aren’t sure how a certain button works.  I realize that I was also once in their position, so I’m happy to teach them, but it also increases my workload.  I will be occasionally telling “war stories” from work, but I’ll keep it basic so all can enjoy.

More about the endeavor.  I’ve been researching anything and everything I can get my hands on pertaining to selling on Etsy, dyeing yarn, treating my hobby as a business…  I’ve picked out a name and need to register it before I make any official announcements about it, and have slowly started gathering supplies that I’ll need.  I’ve been experimenting with KoolAid and Wilton’s gel coloring as dyes, but still need to learn how to use acid dyes.  I wish I could just stick to the KA and Wilton’s, but since I’m trying to be profitable, I’ll go with the professional stuff. 

That’s it for now.  Any suggestions or helpful hints are very welcome in the comments section!