Saturday, January 31, 2009

Etsy, Ravelry, Twitter and Me

For months now my dear hubby has suggested I start one of these blog things about my fiber projects. More specifically, my spinning of yarn, which I am currently obsessed with. These suggestions were normally put off with, "I'm too busy right now, what would I write about anyway?" Hmm. Apparently the "powers that be" were listening and I find myself with quite a bit of time lately due to losing my job. really, it's OK. Here's why.

Since September I've been spinning yarn on a Babe Double Treadle Spinning Wheel I picked up secondhand at a fiber festival. It's great, and I'm "in love" with it, but now there is a small mountain of fiber and fiber projects in my minus
cule living room with nowhere to go. So what is a hot young fiber-holic to do? Why turn some of that effort into cash of course! Not to support the family you see, but to fund the addiction. Off to find some fiber-challenged enablers!

A friend suggested that I check out, which I did and subsequently spent two full weeks submerged in "research" of other people's shops. Several hundred dollars later and in danger of having to go without clean clothes, I finally opened my own little shop called Handmade Sunshine. So far in a month I've managed to have 2 sa
les and about 300 views. Not too bad for a first month.

I joined a few fiber-related teams on Etsy that keep blogs as well. A new fledgling team is Create Crochet! and is headed by a real sweetheart named Kristen. She is always looking for new ideas by people who are passionate about crochet and crochet supplies. She also makes some pretty amazing greeting cards which you should really check out.

Etsy FAST which stands for Fiber Arts Street Team, is a more established group interested in the promotion of fiber arts of all kinds from paper to yarn and everything in between. They have monthly challenges where fiber artists compete to create an item that best embodies the current theme. For instance, February the topic is "emotions" and several people have already listed their item in their shops. One example is the "That Warm and Fuzzy Feeling Scarflette"

Etsy has some amazing articles on how to promote a shop and that's how I found out about and got addicted to a brand new thing. Well, at least for me micro-blogging is new. So far I've been on for almost a week and have 39 followers. Not that I ever say much on there that is enlightening, but the voyeurism is rather fun. Usually the background is set to show off a new yarn listed in my shop. My hubby now teases me about being "such a geek" which I take in stride since he's an even bigger one. It's the whole, "it takes one to know one" kind of mentality that we have come to expect in our relationship. (Contented sigh, giggle, "I love him")

Earlier this year one of my friends had told me about which is an wonderful reference tool for knitters and crocheters and unfortunately requires an invitation to log on. It's still in the Beta testing phase and so you submit a request for an invite and the moderator sends one out easy-peasy in about 4 days. Hey, they're young, they're hip, and extremely cool so it's totally worth the wait. Even bunny-
loving spinners like me can find a niche on there. They have places to keep track of yarns, projects and books that you have pileing up around the house, forums where you can find the answere to every fiber question imagineable, and a nifty message center to keep track of new friends. Sweet!

So where does that leave little ole yours truely? Glued to the computer between spinning up batches of yarn and trying to maintain basic physical hygine requirements, that's where. I think I'm busier now than I ever was when employed. Every-once-in-a-while the bunnies come by and sit on my feet to remind me to feed
them; either that or they're busy plotting the demise of my computer again. I should have never passed up that stock with the electrical tape company.

Here's to wishing all of you a happy and produc
tive weekend! I've got some yarn to spin.