Saturday, June 28, 2014

What makes knitting and crocheting affordable?

What makes knitting and crocheting affordable? How do I define affordable?


If I choose to make my sweaters and accessories and only count the cost of the tools and yarn, I'm not getting a complete picture of how much I'm spending for each item. What part of my budget do I take these items from? My clothes budget? My hobby budget? Entertainment? General household?

It would seem logical to take clothing made from a hobby from the clothes portion of my budget, but what about the time I spend doing these things? If I take the money from the hobby portion of my budget, I get a better idea of the complete picture. If I take the budget from the entertainment portion, it's an even better picture of my total budget for spending.

If I take a small percentage, say 15%, from my clothes budget for the clothes I make, I still have money for clothes that I need immediately. If I take another small percentage, say 25% from the hobby budget for the hobby aspect, I still have money left for more yarn and tools. Tools get depreciated which means I can spread the hooks and needles and other notions costs across the years I do this hobby. If I take another small portion, 15%, from the general household part of my budget, I can count it because it can be used to enhance my work appearance. It can also count from the household budget, if it's a gift. Mostly, I count it from the entertainment budget. Knitting and crocheting are entertaining for me. I can still get movies, go places, and do other fun things as they appear. There is still money from my husband's portion of the entertainment budget for us to do things together. I can watch movies, listen to music or audio books, converse with friends, walk while knitting or crocheting.

Now the best thing about this plan is that if I follow this, I have a bunch of money in my budget for yarns. This is because knitting and crocheting take time. If I use fine yarns with fine hooks or needles, I have a bunch of hours of entertainment for my investment. The larger the project, the more hours I have for entertainment and the less money per hour of entertainment I spend. If I use fat yarn and big needles or hooks, my investment goes down a bit, but these are usually accessories rather than a sweater or skirt. Super bulky yarn doesn't make a good fashion choice for most people.


Sunday, June 15, 2014

Summer Fun

Summer will officially start at the end of this week.  Summer started unofficially in May with Memorial Day.  This past month has been hot, warm, cool, sunny, cloudy and rainy.  The weather might be confusing but my knitting and crochet projects aren't.

I'm working on the Tunisian crochet table cover, the knit phone cover, the jersey pillow (the yarn reminds me of my husband's old comfortable t shirts), and the crocodile stitch stole I designed for class.  So far, the table cover is good.  The phone cover is too big.  I need to reduce my needle size, probably by 2 sizes.  The jersey pillow is soft and smooth.  The stole is fuzzy.  I started this with Paton's Lace in Aran color.  The fuzzy yarn doesn't work well with black or navy colored clothes.  It sheds a bit.  It could be my dogs but I don't think so since they are short haired and this is long and lightly kinked.  I'm looking forward to this being done since I intended it for summer for those times when I go to dinner and am seating right in the blast zone of the AC or the store I go to is frigid (grocery store frozen foods aisle I'm looking at you).  

Make a note these are smaller projects.  I will also be starting work on the kids weaving class projects with the weaving sticks soon, also small projects.  What will I do when these are done?  I plan to work on other small projects.  I will also be working on my church's festival for 2 weeks in July.  I won't be teaching those weeks or really be in touch with things.  I won't even be knitting or crocheting.  I know it's hard to believe but I work shortened hours at my day job, long hours at the festival and by the time I get home and showered, I'm too tired.

I know I will be working on Warm Up America blocks.   I keep yarn and hooks/needles stashed in both vehicles for the down times as well as scratch paper for notes.  I will be working on new stitch patterns good for this effort.  I don't know about you all but I get bored with garter, seed, stockinette, single crochet, double crochet and the like.  I need a little pattern to liven my work up.  I might have a post stitch design or a shell pattern.  It all depends on what hits me in the off moment and what I see when I look out the window to inspire me.

Aside from all this fun and excitement, I look forward to seeing family and friends for cookouts and picnics, the fireworks for the 4th, fresh fruit from our trees and bushes.  Our strawberry patch has already produced a pint or so.  I know there are car shows and carnivals coming up as well.

What kind of fiber fun are you looking forward to?  

Thursday, June 5, 2014

New Classes!!! New Schedule!!! SALE!!!

There's a sale!!!  Classes are on sale!!!  
Here are the details.  They will look a bit familiar.  Any class that is $25 or more is now on sale for $20 on June 7 only.  Sign up online here or in the store.  For those who come into the store, there is a $20 voucher good for class supplies!!  Please take some time out from the Good Samaritan Hospital Street Fair to come to the store to sign up.  The sale is good all day.

Now onto the new classes.  Some classes are retired.  Some classes are new.  Please note, most classes (Wilton may be the exception and need more.  I don't know.) will need 2 paying students.  Consider bringing a friend if you want to be sure of a class.

These are the new crochet offerings.  Small enough to not make you hot just thinking about yarn in summer but large enough to be useful and fun.

Child's Purse

Crochet Basket

Tunisian tablet cover

Colorful  Creatures
 These are the new knit class offerings.  Again small enough to not make you too hot in summer with yarn but some useful and fashionable things.
Simple Knit Scarf

Jersey Pillow

Twisted Headband

Baby Hat
 We also have a new pompom class.  This would be a nice, decorative item to decorate a dorm room in the fall for the grad who is heading off to college or for any teen's room in school colors or their favorite team.
Pompom Wreath
 We haven't forgotten the children either.  New for the kids is weaving with weaving sticks.  This is a very old technique but still has some modern and fashionable and fun applications.

Monster Scarf 
Headband with bow

Now for the new schedules.

Beginner Crochet Classes

All Classes are Mondays 6pm – 8:30pm
Crochet Beginner 1 – Skinny Scarf or Phone Cover                     June 16
Crochet Beginner 2 – Pillow or Scarf                                             June 18
Crochet Advanced Beginner – Cloche or Scarf                             June 9  retired after this date but if you started it and need more help, let me know or come to a yarn night.
New Classes
Tunisian Crochet Table Cover                 July 2                   September 3        
    Crochet Child’s Purse                               July 23        September 15           
    Crochet Colorful Creatures                      August 4     September 29

     Crochet Basket                                                    August 18

Advanced Crochet Classes

All Classes are Wednesdays 6pm – 8:30pm, unless noted otherwise
Discover Time to Crochet Classes

Crocodile Stitch June 11
Ornaments for Summer and Winter August 20
Hairpin Lace Sept. 3
Broomstick Lace September 17
Filet Crochet    October 1      
 Last Chance for these classes
       Discover Crochet – Coasters                                             June 4
         Discover Crochet – Flower Scarf                                          June 24
         Discover Crochet – Flower Beanie                                        June 23
         Discover Crochet -  Spring Bunny                                            June 25

NEW ** Pom Pom Wreath Class               July 26 9:30am – 12 pm  **  NEW

Beginner Knit Classes

All Classes are Thursdays 6 – 8:30 pm
Knit Beginner 1 – Hat or Wristwarmers       June 19
Knit Beginner 2 – Neckwarmer or Tassel Hat      June 20
Knit Advanced Beginner – Cable Scarf or Fingerless Gloves            June 12 retired after this date
New Classes
Simple Scarf                 July 3                   September 4
Jersey Pillow                  July 24        September 18
Baby Hat                                          August 7
Twisted Headband with Bow                           August 21      

Arm Knitting                August 8    6 – 7 pm

Advanced Knit Classes

  All Classes are Fridays 6 – 8:30 pm, unless otherwise noted
Discover Time to Knit Classes
Intarsia            June 13
Socks              July 25            
Entrelac  August 22               
Ornaments September 5         
Fair Isle September 19
Last Chance for these Classes
Discover Knit – Head Wrap            June 26
Discover Knit -   Phone Cover                   June 27      
          Discover Knit - PomPom Hat           June 6
          Discover Knit – Scarf                          June 30
PomPom Wreath           July 26  9:30am – 12pm
Arm Knitting                  August 8  6 – 7pm


Discover Kids Classes
All crochet classes are Saturday mornings 9:30 – 11AM unless noted
Discover Kids Crochet 1 (Necklace and Bracelet) 
August 9
September 20
Discover Kids Crochet 2 (Zipper Pull)
August 23
Discover Kids Crochet 3 (Monsters)
September 6

     All weaving classes are Saturdays 11 – 12:30 unless noted
                    Discover Kids Weaving (Monster Scarf)
                          August 9          September 20
                       Discover Kids Weaving (Monsters)     August 23
                     Discover Kids Weaving (Headband and bow)       September 6

The extras -- Here are the dates for the yarn nights and when I will start Warm Up America joining parties again.  I know you will all join me in a sigh of relief that there won't be any in the summer.  I can't think of anything to make me feel hotter than an afghan in my lap.

 Yarn Nights are times for you to get a question answered about a stitch, yarn or pattern question that doesn’t require a full class.  You can also sit and stitch with me at this time.  Time is 1pm – 4 pm unless noted.

June 14          June 21        July 5 (1-2) July 26        August 9     August 23   September 6                   September 20
Warm Up America Joining Parties are times to help join afghans blocks to help the homeless here in Lebanon with the donation of warm afghans.
Joining party time is 2pm - 5pm unless noted.
                                                            September 21