Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Snow day

Or, more accurately, ice day.

When I left for work Monday afternoon, the bad weather hadn't hit yet. It wasn't even raining! But about an hour after getting there, the situation outside had skipped bad and just went straight on to worse. A co-worker brought me home. I left my car at the office and Justin and I spent the day at home today.

We also stayed up late "crafting." Justin has ventured into the realm of knitted mittens. Once I finish something, I go through a restless phase. I start something, tear it out, start over on the same thing. Tear it out, find a new skein to work from, tear it out. Read two pages in a book. Go back to the original ball of yarn and THEN settle into the next project. Justin usually likes to see something through when he starts on it. I usually get about halfway through a project and start thinking, "Hmmm, I'd like to look at a different yarn for a while!" Needless to say, last night I tore out a scarf I was working with the new yarn I bought at Knit Wicks on Sunday. I flitted around for a while trying to commit to a yarn, a pattern, anything, before I went hunting for some yarn Justin bought me a year ago. Since I'd already started projects with it before and tore it apart, I was able to settle in and start making a scarf. About two hours passed and I said, "Oooh! You know what I want to do? Make a white popcorn scarf!"

And perhaps I will, but for now I'm determined to keep working on my mixed berries scarf.

Tomorrow we will have to venture out to work, but we're really lucky to still have electricity and Internet in all this icy mess.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Spinning yarns

Every once in a while, I get to go with Justin while he works. It's rare, but on days like today, it's a matter of getting two birds with one stone, so to speak. While he was at the yarn shop earlier in the week, the owner told him there would be knitting gathering this afternoon. And because sometimes news photos are hard to come by, he decided to go back today and get a picture of the knitters.

By the time we got there around 2 p.m., the place was packed with men, women and children. Some were knitting, some were spinning, some were making polymer clay buttons. Everyone was having fun. Justin got a spinning lesson from a really awesome woman named Diana, who has been spinning for 25 years. She also makes her own drop spindles. She was really patient, but also really passionate about wheels and fibers. I think spinning is something Justin would like to explore, but a spinning wheel -- no matter how basic -- is a costly investment. Like everything he tries, he took to it like a duck to water. When he was done, Diana rolled up his yarn (maybe half an ounce) and gave it to me. She suggested putting it in a shadowbox with a bay leaf to keep the moths away.

Needless to say, he got some great photos of a 6-year-old girl learning to spin with Diana, a lot of great information and a better-than-average Sunday afternoon at work. I bought a set of bamboo crochet hooks -- a life-changing experience -- and two balls of wool. Some of the ladies at the yarn shop inspired Justin to venture into the realm of knitting socks, but he's currently giving a shot at a pair of wool mittens for me. Although I was always better at crocheting than knitting, the ladies also convinced me that knitting a pair of socks was a breeze. I bought a few new books today, too, and although I can't promise I'll ever try it, I have an arsenal of information within arm's reach if I ever decide to.

I finished the red and black acrylic scarf today and listed the pea soup scarflette in our shop today. So, for the week, I've done two scarflettes and one regular scarf. Plus a handful of wash cloths and face scrubbies. I also finally mailed Candy's scarf to her, which is another goal met for the week.

This is the "Brick is Red" scarflette with the birds-eye maple button. I haven't listed it yet, but you can look for it tomorrow or the next day.

Friday, January 23, 2009

What we're doing now

Yesterday I spent my time before work hanging out with Justin's mom. She was passing through the area on her way to another place, so we got to spend some quality time together doing our favorite things: Eating and shopping. Justin's mom bought me a fabulous new mirror in a cheerful yellow frame with red flowers all around. She and I had seen it in the shop about a year before and I loved it then. The shop girl told us it was on sale yesterday, so my mother-in-law had them wrap it up for me. Now I will have to pester Justin until he hangs it up.

Anyway, spending time with my mother-in-law was a nice little break. The night before I'd finished another little scarflette in brick red and Justin made another button for me in birds-eye maple. While I was out playing yesterday and not worrying about the etsy shop, he was able to stop at the local knitting hangout and picked up some Peruvian wool. He also went to a library's used books shop and found an old instructional book about knitting and crocheting. He came home and taught himself a new stitch. He is currently working on a basket weave cap. I, however, am taking the easy way out with a black-with-red scarf from the stash of acrylic yarn I've been hanging onto for years. I doubt there will ever be a shortage of acrylic yarn -- in the world or in my home -- so I might as well do something with it.

I joined the ARETSY team on Wednesday for etsy sellers in Arkansas. I want to link to their blogs here and I hope I can start working on that tonight.

But, my goal for the day is to finally mail the scarf I made for my friend Candy. I told her probably two weeks ago that I had made one, and then I got swept up in getting the shop ready. I'd made it to surprise her anyway, so if I hadn't told her about it she wouldn't know how long I'd put off mailing it. Maybe she'll forgive me when she sees it.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

It's on like Michelle Kwan

I'm going to be late for my 'real' job if I don't give the shop and the blog a rest today, but I thought it was worth mentioning that teapothollow.etsy.com has officially launched. I'm glued to it because each item has been viewed and we even got a 'heart' from someone we don't even know! Someone we didn't even FORCE to heart us. I feel a little bit like I'm sending a kid off on the first day of school -- nervous, excited, hopeful, terrified.

But it's out there now and we can keep working on the things we'd be working on anyway. I would like to sew some cloth napkins, but I think that is still a ways off. For no other reason than we have a pretty busy weekend ahead this weekend and next.

If you are an etsy seller, leave us a comment and a link to your shop. We'd love to see what you're doing.

Monday, January 19, 2009

My, what a big mouth you have

After creating some truly lovely items to sell on etsy, and after being unable to meet up with our "model" over the weekend, I said to hell with it and told Justin that I would just let him take pictures of me in the hats and scarves.

If you ever want to feel truly great about yourself, try looking a closeup photographs of your face and chins. Justin is going to roll his eyes at me for writing that, but I also felt that I looked super angry in the photos. And for once, I wasn't! I knew that I could not be the Teapot Hollow model any longer than was necessary. So I found this crazy-ass beauty on eBay, did a little dickering with the seller, and got quite a bargain.

Knitting and knitting and knitting and knitting and knitting

And crocheting, too.

Getting ready to open a shop on etsy has been a lot of hard work already. I finished a new pea-soup colored 'scarflette' today and Justin whipped up a handmade rosewood button for it. The button is my favorite part.