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Business Corner: Capitalize on Pantone's Color of the Year!

Posted By TNNA Editor, Thursday, January 25, 2018

Business Corner: Capitalize on Pantone's Color of the Year!

 

Look at what my amazing hubby brought back for me from Amsterdam!!!!! When I found out he was going there for a business trip, I jokingly told him he simply had to stop by @stephen.and.penelope to check it out. Well, he secretly DID and picked out these two glorious skeins of @uschitita single ply yarn and an adorable project bag!!!! I couldn’t have chosen better for myself, and I’m so excited to have some of her yarn in my stash finally. Colors are Feather and Sugared Violets. 😍😍😍 #purpleisthenewblack #pantone2018 #ultraviolet #pantonecoloroftheyear . Ok now I’m going to go finish our holiday preparations. Hope y’all are having a great start to your week! . . . #uschitita #yarn #stephenandpenelope #christmastree #happyholidays #yay #knit #indiedyers #indiedyersofinstagram #indiedyersrock #knitting #knittingaddict #knittersofinstagram #knittersgonnaknit #knittersoftheworld #knitting_inspiration #acolorstory #purple #speckles #specklesaresohotrightnow

A post shared by Lesley Anne Robinson (@knitgraffiti) on

 

According to Pantone, it is officially the year of Ultra Violet. Incorporate this bold purple into your business plan this year to catch the eyes of customers. Click through for a roundup of inspiring articles!

Tags:  business  business tips  TNNANews  trends 

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Vogue Knitting LIVE NYC 2018

Posted By TNNA Editor, Thursday, January 25, 2018
Updated: Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Vogue Knitting LIVE NYC 2018

By Joy Macdonell

 

Vogue Knitting LIVE, brings together thousands of knitting enthusiasts for a weekend filled with fashion, fiber, and education. Everything knitters love about the magazine is experienced at a show. Vogue Knitting LIVE features master-level hand-knitting classes, a high-end shopping experience, knit-couture fashion shows, and interactive art installations that engage and inspire knitters of every level.

On January 12-14, 2018 knitters gathered at the 7th Vogue Knitting Live show at the New York Marriott Marquis right near Time Square. Knitters filled the hotel with 2 full floors dedicated to shopping, demonstrations, and fashion shows. Classes began on Friday, January 11th and ran throughout the weekend on a third floor.

This wintery, east-coast, fiber event is filled with fashion! A Special Event Stage is featured in the marketplace where leading yarn companies show their newest patterns down the center aisle runway to the “ohhs” and “ahhs” of the crowd. Full knitted samples can be found in almost every booth with opportunities to try on knitted garments and even get fitted!

Shopping in the marketplace is an experience like no other. Everywhere you look, there is something to see! Favorite YouTubers and Instagram fiber friends fill the aisles. Attendees wear new patterns in color combinations that inspire Ravelry ques! Everyone is quick to give compliments and Finished Objects (FO) are examined for construction tips and tricks. There were over 160 amazing booths at VKL 2018 along with the familiar yarn tasting stations, ball winding stations, and beginner stations.

Book signings and demonstrations are great places to gather and chat with fiber folks who fit into your tribe. Authors and Instructors are thrilled to meet everyone. Autographs, hugs, and cheer fill the marketplace with laughter and good spirits. The absolute must-have for your knitting library was completely revised and updated VOGUE KNITTING: THE ULTIMATE KNITTING BOOK by Vogue Knitting and released the opening day of the show!

Artist installations are found all over the hotel. Visitors are encouraged to meet the artists and interact and engage with fiber in a new and novel way. There are plenty of chairs and tables for relaxing, catching up on class homework, or gathering with a knitting group.

This year Kristy Glass of Kristy Glass Knits on YouTube.com, led a group of knitters to an impromptu subway storm to take-over a full car on the subway! Stephen Be joined the ride where they sang, laughed, knitted, and made new friends.

2018 fiber shows are off to a good start! This year should be a good one for those of us on a fiber journey. Indie dyers, designers, bloggers, and podcasters are taking center stage at fiber shows and engaging knitters in fun and exciting activities that make attending a show a real event!

More East Coast Shows to put on the calendar:

March 22-25, 2018 – Stitches United Connecticut Convention Center

April 6,7,8 2018 – Pittsburgh Creative Arts Festival

May 5 & 6, 2018 – Maryland Sheep and Wool Festival

May 31 – June 4, 2018 – Camp Stitches Destination Vermont

September 8 & 9, 2018 – Endless Mountains Fiber Festival

October 20 & 21, 2018 – 2018 New York Sheep & Wool Festival

Knitter’s Review has a comprehensive 2018 Knitting & Fiber Events resource on their website

Tags:  TNNANews  Vogue Knitting LIVE 

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What Shops Should Tell Customers During Dye Disasters

Posted By TNNA Editor, Wednesday, January 10, 2018
Updated: Friday, January 5, 2018

What Shops Should Tell Customers During Dye Disasters

By Shannon Herrick, dyer and social media maven for Frabjous Fibers 

You’ve spent the last 11 weeks knitting your masterpiece of color work, and painstakingly woven in all the ends. It’s time to plop it in a warm sink full of water and your favorite wool wash, which smells of deep woods and sunshine, so you can block it out into the perfect size and shape. To your horror, the water is quickly stained turquoise and the white, negative space which used to make all the other colors pop, is now dulled with dye re-adhering to the knitted fabric. This process, usually irreversible, is wildly frustrating, especially when, moments ago, your shawl was perfect.

Why did this happen? What could have been done? What can you do now?

Many factors can affect colorfastness after the manufacturer has set dye. In certain cases, it may not have been colorfast to begin with, whether commercially dyed by a large manufacturer, or hand dyed by a small, indie dye house, mistakes can happen with dye lots. For the purposes of this article, let us assume that the dyer did everything right, and when the yarn left the dye facility, it had been dyed and processed perfectly well. Maybe you’ve even used the same dyer’s yarn many times with no problem. But, your 10-color shawl is now a mess. So, what gives?

One hidden potential culprit is the fact that certain fragrances have the ability and tendency to pull dye from fabric or yarn. This means that your favorite eucalyptus scented wool soak might actually be a threat to the richly and/or multi-colored knits you’ve poured your heart and skill into. It may only affect certain colors, usually saturated hues and especially reds and turquoises, so it may be perfectly safe for the colorways of some knits and not others. The pH of your water could also be a factor that may compromise the integrity of the dye’s adherence. Temperature of the water, hardness or softness and added chemicals in treated city water…all these factors may be different from the water used when the yarn was dyed and could affect the chemistry.

So, what could you have done differently to prevent an unwelcome bleeding and blending of colors in your finished piece? Firstly, everyone’s favorite friend, the Gauge Swatch, can serve two purposes, especially with colorwork. Soak your swatch before you soak your actual piece of knitwear. Soak it in plain, hand-warm water first, and if the colors stay put, try soaking it again with that lavender garden wool wash and see if the color still holds. If you’re good, you’re good. If it bleeds only with the latter, than you know you need to use unscented wool wash or plain water for this particular item whenever you block or wash. If you don’t have a gauge swatch, you can either make one with your leftovers (recommended), or find the most obscure corner of your piece to do a test soak.

Now that you know to do a test next time, what can you do about the piece that’s ruined? There are a few products on the market, like color run removers and dye stain removers, but most people say they don’t work very well or at all with wool knits. Your best bet is to follow the steps above to prevent further bleeding in subsequent washings. For single-color bleeders, you could try to set the dye yourself with common household vinegar, but in order for that to work, you must also introduce heat. Vinegar alone in your blocking bath will not set dye, a commonly perpetuated myth and misunderstanding of the chemistry involved in using vinegar as a mordant.

In order to try dye-setting at home, you want to use a pot you can sacrifice from culinary use. Cover your yarn or knitted piece with water and add a generous glug of white vinegar. Bring slowly to a simmer over low heat and hold it there for 30 minutes. Remove from heat and allow the item to cool in the water (to prevent felting in non-super wash items, and for safety’s sake…I mean, why bother handling simmering-hot fabric or yarn?), and then squeeze the excess water out and block/hang as normal.

Even the most well-dyed yarns from practiced and skilled dyers may bleed on occasion, due to either the saturation and richness of particular color families, or because of external factors affecting the chemistry of the dye process after the fact. Take care with the treasures you create, and always test before you wash. In this way, you should be able to enjoy your knits for years to come!

 

Tags:  business  business tips  TNNANews 

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Reveling in Ravelry

Posted By TNNA Editor, Thursday, December 14, 2017
Updated: Monday, December 11, 2017

Reveling in Ravelry

By Anita M. Wheeless

According to Urban Dictionary, ravelry (n.) is a "term derived from revelry and ravel; a knitting or crocheting party or celebration."¹ That's our kind of party! If you’re not one of the nearly 7 million registered members, what are you waiting for? You don’t need an invitation to join this party. In fact, signing up is free and opens a veritable treasure trove of all things fiber.

Celebrating its 10th year of existence, husband-and-wife team Casey and Jessie Forbes started Ravelry in 2007. Jessie, a knitter, wanted a one-stop resource, where knitters could go for yarn and pattern information. She thought there had to be an easier way to find inspiration and information than constantly searching knitting blogs. Co-founder Casey describes Ravelry as “a community site, organizational tool, and research tool (pattern and yarn database and discovery) for knitters and crocheters.”² In reality, it’s all this and so much more.

Imagine a place where thousands of people who are as passionate about the fiber arts as you are gather to share inspiration, projects, techniques, suggestions, etc. This same place allows you to keep track of all your downloaded patterns, catalog all the fiber arts books you own, store photos and notes of all your projects (past, present and future!) …and connect you to a world-wide community of other people who like to knit, weave, spin, crochet and collect yarn as much as you do!

While other internet applications have sprouted up over the years and, no doubt, will continue to do so, Ravelry, to me as a knitter, is still the best single site to use …whether I’m looking for a project to try, or looking to connect with people, including my customers.

I find that one of the most interesting features is the ability to upload the book titles you own and, when searching for a pattern, if it’s in one of your own books, the search will let you know. This is extremely useful. I have so many books, many by the same author. It’s difficult for me to remember exactly which book any given project might be found.

If I wanted to knit up Elizabeth Zimmerman’s famous “Baby Surprise Jacket,” for instance, but can’t remember which book I own that has this pattern in it, all I have to do is a quick search in my Ravelry library.

What pops up? Two books with the pattern: “Knitting Workshop” and “The Opinionated Knitter.” I didn’t even remember I owned both! Another useful feature is the ability to see and connect with others who have worked from the same pattern.

Here’s an example: years ago, while I was working from a pattern for an entrelac sweater for my niece, I ran into a few trouble spots. I looked up the pattern on Ravelry and found others who had also knit this sweater. I read their notes, looked closely at the photos they had uploaded and, finally, I messaged them, through Ravelry. They kindly wrote back with tips and strategies for workarounds. This is an amazing feature.

You can also contact the designers, themselves. And, if you are a designer, you can feature your patterns for free or for sale. 

As a member of the Ravelry community, you can start a group to discuss just about anything … or join a group who is discussing the particular things you like to knit, from fans of Dr. Seuss to Dr. Who and everyone in between, there’s a group for you on Ravelry!

There are so many incredible things that Ravelry can do, it’s worth your while to check out these sites for more in-depth descriptions. 

http://craftindustryalliance.org/raverly-at-10-how-the-knitting-social-network-has-inspired-and-impacted-yarntrepreneurs/

https://www.acknitwear.co.uk/blog/2016/4/28/how-to-keep-track-of-your-knitting-or-getting-the-most-out-of-ravelry

https://www.acknitwear.co.uk/blog/2017/1/24/using-ravelry-part-2

http://stitchcraftmarketing.com/evolution-ravelry-part-1/

http://stitchcraftmarketing.com/evolution-ravelry-part-2/

Sources

¹https://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=ravelry

*As of September, 2017, Ravelry has over 7,000,000 registered users https://www.practicalecommerce.com/105-leading-social-networks-worldwide

²http://discuss.bootstrapped.fm/t/hi-im-casey-forbes-from-ravelry-com/218


About Anita M. Wheeless

Anita Mumm Wheeless has been a member of TNNA since 2012, and has been certified as a knitting instructor by the Craft Yarn Council. A former newspaper writer/editor, she designs knitting patterns for toys and novelties. Leisure Arts published her book, “Storybook Dolls to Knit” in 2011. Her patterns are also featured on Knitty.com, Knitpicks.com and Craftstylish.com. You can find her on Ravelry.com and Love Knitting. She maintains a website: Thepatternbox.com and a blog: mummble-jummble2.blogspot.com. Connect with Anita on Twitter @AnitaPatternBox or by email: anita@thepatternbox.com.

Tags:  Ravelry  TNNANews 

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Education Corner: Q&A With Agata Aspinwall

Posted By TNNA Editor, Thursday, December 14, 2017
Updated: Monday, December 11, 2017

Education Corner: Q&A With Agata Aspinwall

As a new teacher, Agata Aspinwall will be instructing attendees this winter on needlepoint during "Two Little Chickadees." Agata's class will be held at the TNNA Winter Market on Saturday, Jan. 27, 2018 at 6:30 p.m. If you want to sign up, register for the Winter Market here, then click below to hear Agata's thoughts on needlepoint. here

TNNA: Have you taught classes at previous TNNA trade shows? If not, what inspired you to teach now?

Agata: This will be my first time teaching at a TNNA trade show. I enjoy teaching needlepoint and share my love for this art form.

TNNA: Can you tell us a little more about the class you'll be teaching?

Agata: I'm teaching a class called Little Chickadees, which is a study in circles and curves, which are one of the hardest stitching to do on a grid.

TNNA: Why should attendees consider registering for your class(es) at the TNNA Winter Market?

Agata: This piece is adorable but besides that, it is a great piece to bring back to your shop and teach. It is on the small side so it is a quick, fun stitch.

TNNA: Why do you think education is an important part of attending the Winter Market?

Agata: Education is such an important part of the Winter Market, because it gets people together to learn about new things going on in the needlepoint world and to make connections with other buyers and sellers.

TNNA: Aside from education, what else are you looking forward to at the Winter Market?

Agata: At Winter Market I'm always looking to see the new designs and designers and to get ideas to bring back to shop, The Enriched Stitch in Wilton Connecticut, it is always fun to see what is happening in other parts of the country.  Also it is a great way to network with people in the industry.

TNNA: When preparing for your trip to the Winter Market, what's the one item you can't forget to pack?

Agata: The most important item to a needlepointer is their peepers!!! 


Tags:  TNNANews  Winter Market 

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Education Corner: Q&A With Gwen Bortner

Posted By TNNA Editor, Thursday, November 30, 2017
Updated: Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Education Corner: Q&A with Gwen Bortner

As a veteran teacher to TNNA, Gwen Bortner will be teaching The Cash Must Flow: Creating Cash Flow Projections at the TNNA Winter Market on Sunday, January 28, 2018 in Las Vegas. Learn more about Gwen’s class and why she thinks financial knowledge in this industry is a must. And if you want to take Gwen's classes at the Winter Market, sign up here

TNNA: Have you taught classes at previous TNNA trade shows? If not, what inspired you to teach now?

Gwen: Yes -- every show for the last 10 years!!

TNNA: Can you tell us a little more about the class you'll be teaching?

Gwen: As I spend more time consulting within the industry I am find more commonalities with areas of struggle. All three topics were developed based on questions and issues that consistently arise with my clients. If they are struggling, I am sure others are as well.

TNNA: Why should attendees consider registering for your class(es) at the TNNA Winter Market?

Gwen: Dealing with cash flow, issues around buying/selling a business are always hot topics for the independent business owner. Business/Finance classes aimed specifically at the craft enthusiast business are nearly impossible to find. So all the information will be not only generally applicable to all business, but also tailored to the businesses served by TNNA.

TNNA: Why do you think education is an important part of attending the Winter Market?

Gwen: Because I believe so strongly in the value of education, I always consider industry focused learning opportunities to be one of the most important reasons to attend any market. However, the new format with alternative class times also makes it possible for vendors and attendees to schedule a class or two into their schedule.

TNNA: Aside from education, what else are you looking forward to at the Winter Market?

Gwen: I am really looking forward to the new format and to see how the various participants leverage the various options for showcasing their goods. I also think it will provide even more opportunities to network which is another key aspect to attending the show.

TNNA: When preparing for your trip to the Winter Market, what's the one item you can't forget to pack?

Gwen: Comfortable shoes are ALWAYS a must and of course my materials for my classes. I also think a good method for carrying paper, notes and other similar items is critical.

 


Tags:  TNNANews  Winter Market 

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The Sheep and Wool Festival 2017 in Pictures

Posted By TNNA Editor, Thursday, November 16, 2017
Updated: Tuesday, November 14, 2017

The Sheep and Wool Festival 2017 in Pictures

 Photos by Stephanie Shiman

The New York State Sheep and Wool Festival at the Dutchess County Fairgrounds in Rhinebeck, New York, has been around since 1980, and is the yarn lovers dream. The fair consists of dozens of vendors, various fiber classes and workshops, as well as farm animals. This year, the fair saw more than 30,000 people. Frabjous Fibers' Stephanie Shiman experienced the festival firsthand and documented it with photos. 

   

   

   

    


About Stephanie Shiman

Stephanie Shiman (www.frabjousfibers.comstarted frabjous fibers and Wonderland Yarns in 2004 with a box of yarn stashed under her dining room table.  Now, with a team of a dozen or so creative people, FF&WY hand-dyes fabulous yarns and fibers that make their way to LYS all over the world.

Tags:  TNNANews  trends 

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Education Corner: Q&A with Mary Lou Egan

Posted By TNNA HQ, Thursday, November 16, 2017
Updated: Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Education Corner: Q&A with Mary Lou Egan

As a new teacher to TNNA, Mary Lou Egan will be teaching Short Rows Three Ways at the TNNA Winter Market on Friday, January 26, 2018 in Las Vegas. Learn more about Mary Lou’s class and why she thinks education is a vital part of the Winter Market here.

TNNA: Have you taught classes at previous TNNA trade shows? If not, what inspired you to teach now?

Mary Lou: I have not. I've attended many TNNA Summer Shows, and taken some classes, but never got around to applying to teach. Gale Zucker, my Drop Dead Easy Knits co-author encouraged me to apply after I had so much fun being her 'assistant' when she taught iphone photography in Columbus 2017,

Can you tell us a little more about the class you'll be teaching?

I'm teaching two classes. The first is Short Rows Three Ways. In this class participants learn (at least) three ways to make and keep track of short rows. Yarn shop customers are often afraid of using short rows. This class using techniques so you can help those reluctant customers overcome their fears. We explore techniques by making a little stuffed two-color ball, catnip optional, but provided! The second class is DIY Buttons Yorkshire and Dorset Style. These 19th century buttons are made by weaving with yarn and a tapestry needle over a framework. You don’t need to be able to sew or have any special skills to make distinctive buttons to match your sweater or jacket perfectly. The techniques are a fun class to draw in students during the warmer weather.

Why should attendees consider registering for your class(es) at the TNNA Winter Market?
For fun! Also, to learn some techniques to bring back to customers. Both classes have handouts to bring home and use.

Why do you think education is an important part of attending the Winter Market?

Learning new skills and meeting new people are the best parts of classes. Having the opportunity to get to know others in the field in a fun setting is so useful.

Aside from education, what else are you looking forward to at the Winter Market?
The new format is really intriguing. It sounds as though there will be lots of opportunity to meet, hang out and share idea.

When preparing for your trip to the Winter Market, what's the one item you can't forget to pack?

My interchangeable needle sets - there is so much yarn to swatch, I like to have the right tools at hand. I have both metal and bamboo, because you never know what you'll need.


Tags:  TNNANews  Winter Market 

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How to Become an Affiliate with Online Teachers

Posted By TNNA Editor, Thursday, October 12, 2017
Updated: Saturday, October 7, 2017

By Joy MacDonell

In the past two decades, you as an independent retailer have been challenged by the rise of offline mass-market stores. Mass stores were able to leverage lower prices, broader selections and convenience, to put your retail success in jeopardy. But the seemingly overwhelming rise of mass stores has slowed and the new dominant force plaguing both mass and independent retailers is e-commerce. The next decade will be about the market fragmentation e-commerce will create. In this new climate, the independents who best adapt to the needs of the modern e-commerce shopper can not only compete in this new arena, but thrive.

The old retail goal used to be to get a customer to make a purchase. But in the new online world, an equally important goal should be to get permission to talk to these customers in the future. The most obvious and useful method is to obtain e-mail addresses. Failing that, getting your visitors to follow you on social media is vital to communication and your store’s community. Social media has shown that people enjoy sharing their creations and with a little encouragement from you can provide another outlet for that desire.

 

A new opportunity is now available to the independent retailer that was out of reach in the past. One method independents were able to utilize to compete with big box stores was in-store classes. This created a method of bringing in foot traffic, increased the educational level of your customer base, and created an image for you and your store to be the educational authority on your crafting. But as with all things, your customer is moving online. Your store needs to move with them.

 

There was a problem with in-store classes. They created tremendous pressure on you as an owner to generate new class ideas, find teachers, promote classes, and attract attendees. I am very familiar with the pressure of retail education as I used to own a scrapbook store where we had to teach new classes regularly. Online education opens a new line of revenue for you and can make it easier for a retailer to teach their customers without adding a ton of work to their already busy schedules. 

 

One method would be making your retail store an affiliate to an online educator. Often, that word "affiliate" gets tossed around without a definition.  Basically, it is a fancy word for "sales person" or "retailer".  Digital content is a sell-able item in a retail environment.  A store can earn an agreed upon percentage of a student's tuition just by telling customers the classes are available. For example, if I were selling an online class for $10 and your store were my affiliate and we had agreed upon a 25% commission, then you would get $2.50 every time you sent a student to my online school.

 

Thus, when a retailer becomes an affiliate of an online school - they can turn a profit, just like selling an item on the store shelf!  Except they don't have to reorder product or worry about being out of stock or even have to unlock the doors or turn on the lights to the store!  The customer can take the class at her leisure and maintain lifetime access to the education along with getting handouts and classroom assets.  The only thing the retailer needs to do is tell their customers that classes are available and provide their class affiliate link to the customer.  When the customer signs up for class, using the link, the store gets paid by the teacher.  It is that simple!  The store can provide links to classes on signage in-store, or through emails, blog posts, or social media - how they promote the class is completely up to them.

 

This accomplishes several things for the independent retailer.

 

1.       It is another way to get permission to talk to their customers in the future. Signing up for an online class also captures the customer’s email.

2.       It provides additional utility for your customers. The retail owner is now able to offer instore and online classes to its clientele.

3.       Education moves your customers into a deeper appreciation for the hobby they love. Craft enthusiasts who consider themselves an “expert” spend a disproportionate amount of their discretionary income on their hobby than crafters who consider themselves a “beginner.”

4.       It saves the owner from not only the headaches associated with creating an instore class from scratch, but also from the technical and logistical challenges of filming online classes (camera, lighting, audio, studio, scripts, etc.).

5.       Making your store an affiliate to on online school can generate income just like a product on a shelf - except that it is digital!

 

There are several teachers in the industry who have online classes that would love to be promoted in stores. One of the most popular is Mimi G who has a sewing academy (sewitacademy.com). Another is my own new online educational site called knitwithjoy.com. I am putting up new classes every few weeks. Becoming an affiliate with sites like these would provide numerous online classes immediately to any independent retailer.

 

Display URL = sewitacademy.com. Link URL = http://sew-it-academy.thinkific.com/?ref=e118f1

Display URL = knitwithjoy.com. Link URL = knitwithjoy.com

 

If you do have a little tech savvy with applications like Premiere Pro or Final Cut or know someone who does and would like to host your own classes, there are any number of sites such as Teachable (teachable.com) that would allow you to host your own classes. In addition, many of these sites, including Teachable, allow you to determine who can author your courses. So you could recruit teachers locally, give them permission to author online educational videos and then share revenue with them in the same way.

 

DISPLY URL = teachable.com. Link URL = http://sendmeto.teachable.com/jmp7h

 

A final suggestion for how you can leverage online classes to compete with bigger competitors is turn some of your old monitors into instore class displays. We have all walked through chain craft stores and seen displays running videos on a loop. You can do this with your own online courses. We all have an old monitor lying around. There are 7” HDMI displays on Amazon for as little as $60 (http://amzn.to/2y4YLYB) or 24” monitors that are highly reviewed in the low $100s (http://amzn.to/2fYGu93). You can covert one of these monitors to a workable computer with an ASUS Chromebit for $85 (http://amzn.to/2y4uFog) or an Intel Compute Stick for $127 (http://amzn.to/2y4qDMq). Now your old monitor can connect to the internet and run your own online educational courses on a loop.

 

This is just one of many methods you as an independent retail store owner can adapt to this new  e-commerce education model with your brick and mortar store. Adding your own courses to your online presence or becoming an affiliate to sites like sewitacademy.com or knitwithjoy.com create new revenue streams, offers new utility to your customers, and captures email addresses that you need to generate conversations with your clientele.

 

Display URL = sewitacademy.com. Link URL = http://sew-it-academy.thinkific.com/?ref=e118f1

Display URL = knitwithjoy.com. Link URL = knitwithjoy.com

 



About Joy Macdonell

Joy Macdonell (www.craftingwithjoy.com) is a Creative Blogger and Fiber Consultant. Her job has provided her with lots of great opportunities to teach, including as the host of a television show on the DIY network (Greetings, from DIY) and one on PBS (Crafting at The Spotted Canary). She has also been the guest representative for Martha Stewart Crafts on the Home Shopping Network and has been the education director for the Martha Stewart Crafts brand since it launched in 2007. Prior to starting her career with EK Success Brands in 2001, she and her sister owned the very popular scrapbook store in Fairfax, VA, My Scrapbook Store.

Tags:  business  business tips  TNNANews 

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Falling in Love with Embroidery for the Home

Posted By TNNA Editor, Thursday, September 28, 2017
Updated: Thursday, September 28, 2017

Falling in Love with Embroidery for the Home

 By Angela Davis

There is just something about that first nip of autumn in the air that causes the desire to nest and craft! Maybe it is in our DNA. Plus, there are feasts and holidays to prepare for! How nice would it be to have a chest filled with hand-embroidered pillows (both throw pillows and pillowcases), padded hangers, napkins, tablecloths and aprons, just ready to be brought out and enjoyed?

Whether you are shop owner, a teacher, a designer, or a wholesaler, fall is the perfect time to encourage your customers, students, buyers and vendors to pick up a hoop and embroider something lovely for fall. Below are some links to inspire you, and at the bottom is a class idea to help bring forth beautiful, textured fall heirlooms! Best of all, these links cover embroidery by hand and machine, using threads, flosses, yarn of many weights, as well as any number of other supplies and materials that you may already have around.

First, have you seen the cover of the September-October 2017 Piecework Magazine? It features a project that embodies everything to inspire a perfect fall day at home ─ felted slippers in a perfect fall color embellished with embroidered peacock feathers! 

Are you a machine embroiderer? These sources have most every design you will need for decorating table runners, placemats, napkins, aprons and the works! 

Designs by JuJu

Embroidery Designs
 

In addition, here is a project for hand-embroiderers of almost any skill level! 

Do you want to embroider on a knitted or crocheted piece, even a weaving? The ever-popular Dottie Angel, Tif Fussel, does what she calls Woolly Tattoos, and they are always peachy! Just pop over to the Woolly Tattoo Pinterest page for some incredible inspiration!

And we promised a class idea too. Perhaps my own first memory of embroidery was a fall project in elementary school. It involved a piece of burlap and a needle threaded with orange, olive, gold, scarlet, or beet colored yarn. Our teacher showed us how to knot the thread and pull the threaded needle through the burlap from the back at the bottom of a simple design that she had drawn on the burlap with a marker. From there we were off! I remember the room being very quiet as we were all very absorbed in watching the magic of the outline of a leaf as it appeared on our work. Yes, there were tangles and tails that were too short and needles that were too aggressively pulled and freed of their yarn, but overall it was a success. Our teacher collected our pieces and strung them all up on a long piece of kitchen twine while we were at lunch. We came back inside to see a very rustic bunting hanging across the reading area, which, to a child in Tucson, Arizona, was the closest thing to fall leaves that I might ever see. This has inspired the idea for a class. Well, this experience, coupled with an episode of The Loop and Bar podcast and the lovely Kate. 

Kate makes adorable Tea Time buntings with each of the blocks having an appliqued letter to spell out Tea Time on the front, and a pocket in the back for a packet of tea. Perhaps our rustic, embroidered fall version can hold individual packets of cider mix, hot chocolate, or another instant soup or beverage that one associates with fall.

Class: To Embroider - A Fall Café Bunting
Skill Level: All

Materials:

5” x 7” rectangles of burlap
5” x 4” rectangle of burlap (for pocket backs)
Embroidery needles
Scraps of wool yarn in fall colors (mixed weights are fine)
A marker
Small scissors
Some embellishments like buttons, shells, feathers, beads, or sequins if you’d like
A piece of kitchen twine or (a long strip of torn cotton fabric) 

Instructions:

Draw or trace a fall shape onto a 5” x 7” piece of burlap, with the piece oriented so that the 5” ends are at the top and bottom.

Ideas for shapes include leaf, feather, harvest moon, squirrel, chrysanthemums, aster, acorn, raven, pumpkin, stag, fox, etc. (There are MANY free stencils for these shapes available online).

Embroider the design according to skill level. This is an excellent opportunity to learn new stitches! Embellish with buttons as desired too!

Place a 5” x 4” piece behind the embroidered piece and either whipstitch, blanket stitch, or sew with a running stitch along bottom and sides, creating a pocket on back.

When multiple pieces have been finished, string them together bunting style across the tops. Place packets of your favorite fall drinks in the pockets, hang, and enjoy!

Click here to see Kate’s adorable Tea Time Bunting.


About Angela Davis 

Angela Davis, B.S.B.M., is a fiber artist, Craft Yarn Council of America certified-hand knitting instructor, author, artist and designer. She is passionate about supporting the needlearts, handcrafting, slow-fashion, visible mending, supporting small-batch producers of ethically and ecologically sound fibers, and reducing textile waste. Angela has taught knitting on European and Japanese tour buses, started a knitting-for-charity club at an inner-city high school in Los Angeles, has knitted props for the television show Mad Men, and is a contributing author and designer for publications including Piecework, STUDIOS, Knitting Traditions, and Sockupied magazines.

By day, Angela is director of product development and artist relations for internationally renowned punk, garage, rock and metalcore bands. She lives in Long Beach, California with her three sons. Angela’s Ravelry ID is alittlebird, and you can find her on Instagram as @angelaxdavis and on Twitter as @angelaxxdavis.

Tags:  embroidery  TNNANews 

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