Archive for July, 2008

“No joyriding and Wisconsin is off-limits”

July 25, 2008

These are actually rules governing the use of the crew car in Iron Mountain, MI.  Sometimes when we fly to small, out of the way places, the hotels we stay in don’t have airport shuttles.  In these cases, either the company or the hotel provides us with a car (or early 80’s conversion van) for us to get back and forth.  It’s also available for excursions such as food-seeking and buying new deodorant because yours melted.  I went on one of these food-seeking missions this evening, but it soon turned into a joyride towards Wisconsin.  Honestly, I just wanted to check out the area and see what was up here in the middle of the Upper Peninsula woods and before I knew it, there was the “Welcome to Wisconsin” sign.  I turned around before I got there, not because I didn’t want to break any more rules, but because my food was getting cold.  I’m now anxiously awaiting for the sun to retreat so I can go to bed.  This airline life is an exciting one!!

I’ve been dyeing again finally!  I dyed much yarn on Tuesday before starting work on Wednesday, so I’m pretty excited to get home and see the dry results!  I ordered a sock blank from Knit Picks which I painted with loads of different designs to test knit with the intention of making my own blanks and selling both dyed ones and un-dyed ones.  I also wanted to spy on the exact dimensions/gauge/stitch counts also for replication purposes.  I’ll be showing pictures of the dyeing session once everything is reskeined/test knit.

I finally knit a sample of my handpainted yarn.  It’s a pair of socks, but I only have a picture of the first one.  The second one is done except for kitchenering the toe and weaving in the ends.  You’ll have to check my projects page on Ravelry to see both, but here’s the first one:

This pattern was from the Pattern-a-Day Knitting Calender from 2007.  The socks fit really well and they were quick!  The best part is the 200 yds I burned for the Ravelry Stash and Burn July challenge!  I’ve also been working on Kureopatra’s Snake, a super-awesome entrelac scarf, but I fear I may run short on yarn and have to track down another skein.  The stash-busting has been fast and furious, I just hope I can keep it up. 

That’s all for this time.  The sun is getting low and I want to be in bed by 9.  Thanks for reading!

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Knitting heavily and treading lightly

July 15, 2008

Since my sales are not good, mostly because my marketing is not good, I’m reading a book.  This book is helping me develop a focused marketing plan that will hopefully generate better sales.  I like books because you can learn anything from a book, including developing a tagline.  And what better tagline for my eco-friendly knitting shop than “knitting heavily and treading lightly”.  This book has also refocused my efforts and made me realize that I need a second shop dedicated to my knitting supplies.  My current shop is just a collection of unrelated items with no cohesiveness.  This shop will stay open as such and my new shop will be focused strictly on yarn, stitch markers, and needle cases and such.  No finished knitting, no candles, no earrings, no random supplies.  Just knitting things. 

This new shop will be open once I build up a little bit of stock.  I have some that I’ll transfer from my old store, but I need enough to keep updating my shop for a while.  I’ve ordered some undyed yarn that should be here in a few days, and I’m planning on dyeing next Monday or Tuesday, so I should be able to start the transfer soon. 

I’ve been knitting up a storm!!  I talked in my last post about the UFO challenge, and I’m making good progress.  I finished my Petal Bib from a book called One Skein.  Turned out really nice and is in the hands of the recipient.  Made from organic cotton yarn.  I also realized that I still don’t like knitting with cotton.  One of these days I’ll actually walk away from the cotton project.

I’ve also been progressing on the BF’s socks.  Magic loop socks are really slow!!  Everyone raves about how great it is, but I like to see progress and it’s hard when you’re doing both at once and it’s going half as fast (seemingly, but I know I’ll be happy when they’re both done.)  I’ve also finished a pair of socks I’ve had sitting around for a few months and started another pair I’ve been meaning to knit.  I’m almost to the toe shaping of the first one and I just love how they’re turning out.  I’ll hopefully finish the first one tomorrow and get started on the second.

The flying has been going pretty well except for all sorts of unforecasted fog and other crummy weather.  I guess that’s good because it keeps me sharp and on my toes, but it would be easier if the first officers were also sharp and on their toes.  I knew I was going to be flying with new and inexperienced pilots, but it becomes really stressful in a high workload situation like a missed approach.

That’s all for this time.  See you soon!

Airshows and Thunderstorms

July 3, 2008

I’m back this cloudy 3rd of July after a short break which included aircraft simulators, a trip to Alaska, and cleaning up after a gnarly thunderstorm.  I’m still in heavy research mode with my Etsy shop and am about to place an order for more supplies.  Comparing prices between suppliers is a royal pain and it’s even harder knowing what kinds of yarn will sell the best.  I know that I want the most environmentally friendly ones, but people want superwash.  I don’t do superwash, so I guess my market is significantly smaller and I need to reach out to my potential customers more aggressively.  I’ll let you know when I figure out how to do this.

Last Saturday, I was lucky enough to get to the Arctic Thunder airshow at Elmendorf Air Force Base in Anchorage, AK.  Pretty sweet show, I’ve posted some pictures on Flickr here

New in the store:  organic cotton face scrubbies! 

I also have an iPod cozy in the works as well as some new yarns and stitch markers.  And once I get my new shipment of supplies (that I’ll order today), I’ll have even more new and wonderful things in my shop. 

One of my Ravelry groups has monthly stash-busting challenges.  For those that don’t know, knitters have a collection of yarn that hangs out, waiting for a project.  Some have a lot, some have a little, but all of these collections are known as “stash”.  I have what is considered a fairly small stash.  It’s cute and I like it, but I’m also excited to see what projects my stash will become.  This month’s stash-busting challenge is to finish your “UFOs”. Those pesky UnFinishedObjects sit around, weighing heavy on the knitter’s mind.  I decided to accept this challenge and have so far finished 3, yes, 3 projects this month.  Actually, I finished them yesterday.  Yayme!!!  To be fair, they were all very close to completion and just needed some minor finishing, but they are officially done!  The next few won’t go so quick.  I have a pair of socks that I started working on the gusset last night, I have a second sock that’s only about 1.5″ completed, and a sweater vest that I’ve had on the needles since November.  Yikes!  I’m hoping to finish all 3 this month as well as put the finishing touches on a knit toy that’s been sitting in a bin for over a year because I didn’t understand the directions.  Luckily, with the new knowledge I’ve gained through the year, I am now confidant that I can tackle and finish this project. 

That’s is for this entry, hope everyone has a great 4th of July and holiday weekend!