Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Vineyard Socks

I made a pair of socks for a friend's little girl last week out of the Vineyard colorway of my "High Society Sock Yarn".  Before I shipped them off, I took a few photographs so you can see what this colorway looks like once it is knit up.

Specs for the socks are:
Knit on size 2 needles
56 stitches in a round
~8 stitches/inch
This is a kettle dyed yarn so there is no color repeat and the color did not pool at all.

Monday, April 26, 2010

The Pink Button

Do you see that pink button just up there?  The one that says 'Color Poll'?  Yeah, THAT one!  It's new!  And, it does a couple of really cool things!

First of all, it signs you up for my 'New Colorways Newsletter'.  I know, I know, I don't need any more e-mail crap either.  But this one is not going to come out more often than once a week.  And, in all actuality, probably more like once or twice a month.  Only when I have a new batch of colorways.  And, it's not just going to do the usual show & tell song & dance.  Oh, heck no.  It's also going to have coupons and/or special offers or discounts on future yarn purchases from Dyed Bright Here.  I don't know exactly what they will be right now but I've got some crazy ideas bouncing around in my head.  And, I can assure you they will definitely be worth it!

Secondly, that there cute little pink button also lets you be a part of my creative process as I continue on my dyeing adventure!  Seriously!  There are check boxes for you to tell me what sort of colorway you would most like to see.  If you just want to be added to the mailing list and don't want to give me some direction well that is fine--it's not required.  If, however, you want to help guide me in making a colorway you simply can not live without...well then, have at it.  Check off one color, two colors....heck, check off as many as you think might look cool together.  At the bottom, there is also a free-form text box for anything else you think I should know .  Like "make 1/2 the skein pink, 1/4 red, and 1/4 black" for example.  Or,  "Hey, Sue!  Your yarn really rocks!" as another example.

A note on e-mail addresses.  Your e-mail address will ALWAYS be held in the strictest of confidences and will NEVER be shared with anyone.  EVER.

When you are all done filling out your e-mail address and checking off the colors that really make your heart sing and leaving any comments you may have, just click 'SUBMIT' at the bottom of the form.

I will be heading back into the kitchen later this week to dye up a couple of the colorways that I am currently either out of or running low on.  I am also planning on cooking up a few new colorways.  So, let me know what you just gotta have in your stash and I'll send you a special offer as a thank you.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Business Plans

When I initially opened my Etsy shop I started with listings for finished knitted items.  Things like hats, scarves, coasters, and shawls.  Many were things I had already knit with no intended recipient.  As I started to knit things specifically for the shop I found that I wasn't enjoying the knitting itself much any more.  I have always loved dying yarn but found that I was limiting myself in that area because I can only knit so fast.  And so, with the idea of reclaiming my knitting time for me, and enabling myself to dye yarn to my hearts content, I switched the focus of my shop to hand dyed (painted) yarn.  In particular, I have focused on sock yarn.

The issue that I am currently confronting is the issue of selling retail (from my etsy shop or some other site) versus selling wholesale to local yarn shops.  Selling retail means a much higher profit margin but not much visibility.  I have been using Twitter and this blog to get my name out there but it is really slow going.  And, yes, I know I need to add Facebook to the mix (I really don't like Facebook so I'm dragging my feet.).  Selling wholesale means I have the buying public of the local yarn shops that would carry my products.  This way, I would get my name and my products in front of those knitters who are at the shops buying and who may not be in my sphere of influence on line.  Wholesale means more work, less profit per skein.  But the potential for a higher volume of sales would make up for that.

I have decided to try the wholesale route.  Whether or not I can get any yarn shops to place an order remains to be seen.  I have done quite a bit of research on local yarn shops lately.  My goal is to get five on board by October (six months from now).  I am approaching shops one at a time. My criteria for a shop that I want to work with is pretty simple.  First and foremost, it has to be a shop that I would want to not just shop at occasionally, but be a "regular" at.  Secondly, I don't want any market overlap of the shops.  I want each shop to be the one and only place a patron of the shop would find my yarn without travelling outside their normal 'home' area.

My other goal that I am starting to work toward is a vendor booth at Maryland Sheep & Wool Festival and/or Rhinebeck in 2011.  That's a year away for MD, and 18 months for NY.  I will be able to get the information/application for MD as soon as this year's festival is over (May 3rd).  

Initially, I didn't like the idea of keeping large inventories on hand because of the amount of money that gets tied up in that.  However, I have come to realize that if I want to start doing these kinds of fiber festivals the only way I will have enough inventory is to gradually build it up.  The nice thing about doing that is that I can also keep making new colors...something I so love to do.

So, there's a peek into the thought processes I am going through as I continue to grow and develop this business.  And, yes, I know it might be a little easier if I just wrote a business plan.  I'll get right on that.  As soon as I figure out what that plan is...

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Limited Time Offer

I'm having a special sale this weekend in my Etsy shop. (click the banner above to get there from here).

Between now and midnight EST the next 10 sales will get a percentage of their sale refunded back to them through PayPal. 

The first sale will get 50% off

The second sale will get 45% off

The third sale will get 40% off

and so on down the line.  The 10th sale will get 5% off.

So, hurry on in!!  There is no quantity limit....the sooner you buy, the bigger your refund!

And, as always, I appreciate you business!  Have a great weekend!