Monday, April 18, 2011

Selling Out

Recently I've gone through a bit of personal struggle over my business. Part of me wanted to be a purest and only sell yarn. The other part of me wanted to diversify to reach new clients by offering knitted goods. I didn't want to make my dyeing seem less important but, frankly, if this business is going to support me, I need to sell more stuff. And I've always considered myself a Knitter first (with a capital K) and a dyer second. While dying has definitely become more and more important to me (and even more so over the last 8 months) I still love knitting deep down at the core. I could sit all day and knit and be perfectly content. I do love to spend all day dyeing but it's just not as pleasurable to me. Not that I don't get a great deal of pleasure from it, don't get me wrong. But there is still an aspect of work there for me. In knitting, even when I'm making things to sell, it really doesn't seem like work. It seems like I'm enjoying myself while (potentially) making money. The only issue comes when I don't want to make something that I think will sell. I mean, there are only so many washcloths a girl can make before she starts to get a little bleary eyed.

 Baby booties, another thing that might make you go bleary eyed if made in large quantities.

So, there was a little struggle. But in the end, the diversify side won. If you look at the dyers that are out there very few only wear the hat of Dyer. Most are also designers, button and shawl pin makers, or spinners as well. And some started with one of these other areas and moved into dyeing. And that's just talking about the lucky few who do this full time. Many more have dyeing as a hobby that makes a little spending money. So, why can't I offer my knitting? I'm no master but it doesn't take a whole lot of skill to make some felted coasters or baby booties. But people like that kind of stuff. There are a lot of people who are looking for something unique and handmade. Something that's not mass produced. Something with a little character. I could be that person. If that seems like I'm selling out or selling my dye abilities short, well, that's something I may have to deal with down the road. In the meantime maybe I can actually make knitting into a profitable venture.

Pile of knitted things to be felted.

On a side note: I will be at the Inman Park Festival April 30th and May 1st in Atlanta, GA and the Snellville Days Festival May 7th and 8th in Snellville, GA. If you're in the area please stop by! Inman Park looks to be a huge event with a Street Market and juried Arts and Crafts Market (I'll be in the Street Market). Snellville Days is a bit smaller and more folksy but they are both worth the trip.

No comments: