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#NeedleStoresoftheWorld: Plum Tree Yarn Shop By: TNNA Editor "Leap" into our special Leap Year #NeedleStoresoftheWorld feature! This month, we're taking you to Michigan for a visit to  Plum Tree Yarn Shop  in Milan. Describe what Plum Tree Yarn Shop does best. Just 10 minutes south of Ann Arbor, this family business encourages Southeast Michigan residents and visitors to create beautiful textiles and express themselves artistically. The store does this by selling high-quality yarn and supplies, teaching project-based classes and developing an inclusive community. What makes Plum Tree Yarn Shop unique? This LYS just opened in October 2019 and ...
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Everything You Need to Know (EYNTK) ... About Silk By: Alexandra Parks, Dashing Mouse Designs Silk is a beautiful fiber with unparalleled sheen and drape. Whether used on its own or in a blend, silk has characteristics that fiber artists love. But how much do you know about the different kinds of silk and how it can be used in various crafts? All true silk comes from silkworms. Some rayons with similar properties are marketed as “—silk,” such as soysilk, but that is a topic for a different day. Types of Silk The finest, whitest silk is bombyx silk, sometimes also called "cultivated silk" or "mulberry silk," and comes from the cocoon of the bombyx ...
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#MakerSpotlight: Crafty is Cool By: TNNA Editor We’re l♥ving our February #MakerSpotlight with Allison Hoffman from  Crafty is Cool.  Since her start in 2007, Hoffman has taken the crocheting scene by storm. With her growing popularity among celebrities, three amigurumi pattern books under her belt and adorably cool designs, she’s got no plans of slowing down anytime soon. Continue reading for more on Hoffman and her minis! Tell us what makes your business unique. I try to make things that have tons of personality and nostalgia. That's what makes them so fun to make. When I write patterns, I don't skimp on the details. I'm so excited ...
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The Rules of Overtime: What You Need to Know Paige McAllister and Claudia St. John of Affinity HR Group, Inc. Many of our clients mistakenly believe it is up to them to decide whether to pay employees on an hourly (non-exempt) or salaried (exempt) basis. Often, they classify employees, such as CSRs and inside sales professionals, as exempt and salaried when, in fact, the law requires that they be paid hourly and eligible for overtime. The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) , administered by the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL), establishes a duties and salary test that employers must consider when classifying an employee as “non-exempt” or “exempt.” ...
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Soak-ing Up Some Fun With Jacqueline Sava By: TNNA Editor Our TNNA Board of Directors series continues! Dive into the careers and experiences of your leadership with us as we bring you TNNA Secretary Jacqueline Sava of Soak Wash, Inc. Jacqueline discusses the birth of Soak, how she approaches change and what keeps her love for crafting alive. TNNA: Share a bit about your business and how you got started. Jacqueline Sava (JS): I grew up watching my mom knit. She was also a master at needlepoint, bargello and apparel design. At Rhode Island School of Design, while studying industrial design, I took machine knitting in the textile department ...
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Behind the Design: Jill Wolcott Knits for #LYSDay By: TNNA Editor Back in October, we shared the stories behind the 2020 Local Yarn Store Day design contest judges . Since then, we've announced the winner of each category and begun to tease the soon-to-be-available, exclusive patterns. So, while we know what you really cannot wait to see is each pattern, we're taking some time to get to know the people behind the pattern. It all starts with gender-neutral design winner Jill Wolcott . Read on to learn about the design she crafted and her creative process. Share a bit about your designs and background. Jill Wolcott : I learned to sew with a ...
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#NeedleStoresoftheWorld: River City Yarns By: TNNA Editor This month, we're ringing in a new year ( and a new decade! ) with a brand-new #NeedleStoresoftheWorld feature! Discover the story of Edmonton's  River City Yarns  in Alberta, Canada. Describe what River City Yarns does best. If you like to shop locally or to support the handcraft market, River City Yarns has what you're looking for. The store's local, handmade products include knitting needle cases, drop spindles, yarn swifts, sterling silver stitch markers, unspun fiber, accessories and jewelry. Designated "a place to unwind," River City Yarns is a sanctuary for crafters and pillar of ...
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Photo courtesy of  Pantone.com Take It Easy with Pantone's 2020 Color of the Year By: TNNA Editor Is it just us, or was 2019 the year that didn’t stop? We’re slowing things down in 2020 with Pantone ’s Color of the Year, to the relaxing tone of Classic Blue. According to the site, the color installs “calm, confidence and connection" and the "enduring blue hue highlights our desire for a dependable and stable foundation on which to build as we cross the threshold into a new era.” Ugh, yes, please! Intertwine this color into your projects all year long. We’ll get you started with some inspiration that just might lead to meditation: ...
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#MakerSpotlight: Dockside Knits   By: TNNA Editor New year, new #MakerSpotlight! Maker Karen Bourquin is a boater that loves all things water. According to her website, “Dockside landings are always at the beginning and conclusion of our wandering adventures.” Read on to learn more about our January maker. Tell us what makes your business unique. I love to design things that I would love to wear, using yarns from ethical and sustainable sources, that provide adventurous details to enable the knitter to achieve a successful and wearable knitted garment or accessory. Share a “fun fact” about you or your products. I am so lucky to live on Vancouver ...
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Making the Most of Your Advertising Budget By: Laura Cameron for Stitchcraft Marketing Editors' Note: A version of this post was originally published to Stitchcraft Marketing's website on January 19, 2016. They've updated it to make it more relevant to TNNA readers and your businesses in 2020 and beyond! Successful advertising is crucial to growing your customer base and, in turn, your craft business. With scarce resources and a plethora of advertising opportunities, knowing how to spend your advertising budget to get the best possible return on investment (ROI) is key. Here are our top tips to help you decide where to place ads, how to determine ...
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How to Get the Most Out of Your Time at Creativation By: Rich Kizer & Georganne Bender Creativation is almost here! The question is: Are you ready to go? Each year we ask successful retailers to share what they do to make each trade show trip profitable. Here are some of their top secrets of success and things to think about before you leave for Phoenix: 1. Pre-Plan Your Time The goal here is to get more out of the show, but before you leave home, you need to do some pre-show homework. Take a close look at your product sales histories. Which merchandise is selling, and which product is just lying around gathering dust? Make a list ...
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LYS and Local Gardens Collaborate on an Art Project That’s Literally ‘Da Bomb’ By: TNNA Editor Looking for a cool new way to promote your local yarn store, or LYS, and highlight a community space plus local artists? Yarn bombing might be your next great idea! We sat down with Penny Franz, of Ewe Count in Cheyenne, Wyoming, to learn more about the LYS’s recent collaboration with the Cheyenne Botanic Gardens. TNNA: According to local news coverage , the Cheyenne Botanic Gardens approached you and your store about using yarn art as a way to highlight its expansive grounds. The report also details that the process began in January and completed ...
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Fashion Report: Winter 2019 NeedleArts Trends 'Extravagance' is the Word By Heather Zoppetti It’s cold. Although winter hasn’t officially started quite yet, we are in full "winter mode" here in the Mid-Atlantic region. We’ve had our first snow and the holiday season is upon us. Our sweaters are out, our mittens are on and our hot chocolate is steamy. Bring on the holiday knitting! The 2020 Pantone Color of the Year has been announced: Classic Blue. This calming color is sure to bring peace of mind and a relaxing feel to any wardrobe or home. You’ll see it in everything from fashion to furnishings to yarn. It’s reminiscent of classic blue jeans, ...
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Don Lynch on Needlepoint and Not Taking His Business 'Too Seriously' By: TNNA Editor Are you curious to learn more about your elected leaders from TNNA? So were we! As we close this year and look to begin a new one, we're kicking off a series that dives into the careers and experiences of your TNNA Board of Directors. First up: Immediate Past President Don Lynch of Associated Talents, Inc. Read on to learn more about Don's needlearts journey. TNNA: Share a bit about your business and how you got started. Don Lynch (DL): I own Associated Talents, Inc. and Two Sisters Needlepoint . Both are wholesale, hand-painted needlepoint companies. ...
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#NeedleStoresoftheWorld: Serial Knitters Yarn Shop By: TNNA Editor 'Tis the season of shopping ... and we hope you're shopping locally! If you'll be in the state of Washington this month, check out our December #NeedleStoresoftheWorld feature: Serial Knitters Yarn Shop in Kirkland. Describe what Serial Knitters Yarn Shop does best. Serial Knitters Yarn Shop is a community-based yarn shop that specializes in local and popular hand-dyed yarn, including its very own DyeHouse Yarns . The store also carries a fabulous selection of name-brand yarn, needles, hooks, patterns, books, needlefelting, weaving, spinning supplies, bags, notions and accessories. ...
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Giving Back: Crafting for Charity By: Stitchcraft Marketing As the holidays approach, we spend time thinking about how grateful we are for the blessings in our lives. Our attention also turns to those less fortunate than us. As crafters, it’s natural to want to give back via something warm and cozy that we’ve created. Today, we’ve rounded up some wonderful causes accepting handcrafted donations if you’re so inclined! Warm Up America Warm Up America was founded in 1992 as a 501(c)(3) whose mission is to motivate, train and coordinate volunteers to knit and crochet afghans and clothing for those in need. Warm Up America serves as a collection point ...
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#MakerSpotlight: The Chilly Dog   By: TNNA Editor This December brings the gift of a new #MakerSpotlight! Today, we’re highlighting The Chilly Dog.  According to her website, Ellen Thomas is an independent pattern designer with a background in engineering and nearly three decades of knitting experience! Read more on Ellen and her mission to provide knit-worthy patterns, instructional resources and creative inspirations. Tell us what makes your business unique. I am a knit designer that also loves to teach. It was logical for me to combine those two skills because I'm deeply disheartened when I hear a knitter say they really like a particular pattern ...
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'Swatched': A Knit and Crochet Docu-series By: Hillary Nussbaum, Co-founder of Cereal Made Meghan Jones, the knit designer behind Little NutMeg Productions , had always wondered why a makers series focused on knit and crochet designers did not exist. As she describes it, “the process of knit and crochet design is a complex mix of artistry and technicality — the designers who make patterns have to be versatile and find the perfect mix of a beautiful knitted item with an excellently workable pattern.” Every designer has different influences and inspirations, a different process for bringing their ideas to life. To Meghan, documentaries that offer ...
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#NeedleStoresoftheWorld: Mosaic Yarn Studio By: TNNA Editor This month we're thankful for ... local stores! On top of excitement for the upcoming Thanksgiving holiday, we are excited to bring you the November #NeedleStoresoftheWorld highlight. From TNNA's HQ state, meet  Mosaic Yarn Studio in Mount Prospect, Illinois. Describe what Mosaic Yarn Studio does best. With a focus on instruction, the studio's goal is to become a celebrated, fiber arts design school. The Mosaic Yarn Studio team knows that excelling at customer service and instruction is the key. What makes Mosaic Yarn Studio unique? Mosaic Yarn Studio specializes in instruction in ...
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Think Big, Shop Small By: TNNA Editor Saturday, November 30 marks the 10th Annual Small Business Saturday  event from American Express ® . If you’ve never participated, now’s the time! Save the date and celebrate the small businesses in your area ... or make sure your business welcomes new and old customers in a unique way. Shop Small ® is designed to help local retailers flourish amid the major deals from large chains. Every time a customer makes the decision to purchase from a local store, including local yarn stores (LYS), they make the choice to be part of making a big impact for small businesses everywhere. According to American Express, “For ...
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