Browsing articles from "April, 2017"
Apr 30, 2017

Whirly Bookmark

Sometimes quick and simple make the best gifts.  Bookmarks are a gift that most anyone can use.  Pretty yarn and very little time can make a stunning Whirly Bookmark making it great for end of the year teachers’ gifts as well as gifts for any holiday or birthday.

 

LOOM:  Sock Loom EFG

YARN: 2 yds of 2 weight yarn.   Lion Brand Bonbons in Celebrate used in sample.

NOTIONS:  knitting tool, tapestry needle

GAUGE:  n/a

SIZE:  Approximately 12” in length

ABBREVIATIONS

CO=Cast on

Rep=repeat

K=knit

INSTRUCTIONS

Curlicue Instructions

Step 1:  e-wrap K peg 1, 4 times

Step 2:  figure 8 wrap (see 2 Peg I-Cord Instructions) both pegs and K over, one time

Rep steps 1 & 2 until the curlicue is the length stated in the pattern.  Curls may need to be worked into place by hand.

2 Peg I-Cord Instructions

Step 1:  Wrap both pegs in a figure 8 by bringing the working yarn behind peg 1, around the front and between pegs 1 and 2, then behind peg 2, around the front and between pegs 1 and 2.  K over.

Rep step 1 until the i-cord is the length stated in the pattern.

Bookmark

Using 2 strands of yarn held together as one, CO 2 pegs by placing the slip knot on peg 1 and wrapping peg 2   Wrap both pegs in a figure 8 by bringing the working yarn behind peg 1, around the front and between pegs 1 and 2, then behind peg 2, around the front and between pegs 1 and 2.  Knit over.

Step 1:  Work Curlicue Instructions (above) until the work curls and is about 1” long.

Step 2:  Work a 2 peg i-cord until the work is approx. 10” from the end.

Note:  If a shorter or longer bookmark is desired, knit the i-cord to the desired length before the next step.

Step 3:  Work Curlicue Instructions until the work curls and is about 12” from the end (top curl should be only 2” long).

BO by moving the stitch on peg 1 to peg 2, lift bottom loop over top, cut the working yarn leaving a tail to weave in, pull the tail through the final loop.

Weave in ends.

 

 

 

 

 

 

1 Comment

  • I notice that the 38″ knitting board is available in June 2017. Has it been redesigned? Do the pegs have the groove in them? I just bought one from Amazon thinking that it was discontinued and was disappointed that there are no grooves to guide the pick and it is so much heavier than the other looms, even thought it is longer. Was just surprised.

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Apr 18, 2017

Loom FAQs: How Do I Price My Work To Sell?

 

 

 

 

 

Lots of people who love any of the fiber arts end up wanting to sell their work.  Sometimes it is because they run out of people to make things for as gifts.  Or because they have a friend that has asked them to make something in particular.  Or sometimes it’s a simple matter of making money to help pay the bills.

This always leads to questions.  How do I price my work?  Am I asking too much because people seemed surprised when I mention the price?  Why am I not selling anything when my prices are low?

While there is nothing really set in stone on how to price handmade items, let’s discuss various ways to go about finding that right price for your items.

What It’s Worth VS. What People Will Pay

When pricing handmade items made of yarn, the first most obvious way is to keep up with the number of hours spent working on the item, multiplying that by an hourly wage, then adding cost of materials used.

Problem with that is even when using minimum wage, the price most likely will be more than most people are willing to pay or can even afford to pay.  This doesn’t mean that you don’t deserve that price for the items.  We all deserve to be paid more for our work than we can ever sell them for.

So what should I do?

Using The Cost of Supplies As a Guide

Another way to calculate price is to take the cost of yarn used for the project and multiple that by 2 or 3.

This method is used most often.  I like to multiply the cost of yarn by 3 because I do not want to undersell myself.  If the item is very time consuming due to it being a complex pattern, I will always add $10 to $50 depending on the size of the item and how long it took to complete.

But that seems too high to ask.

Most people do tend to under price their items.  They think that people will not pay a higher price for their work.

Let me just say this.  Never underestimate the value of your work.

Some people will not buy an item if they think it’s too cheap.  They may think you use inferior yarn.  Or that there is something wrong with it.

But people complain about it being too high, and they are able to buy it at a store cheaper.

There is always people who will complain about the price.  If they think they can get the same exact item with the same exact quality for less at a store, I can guarantee they will be in for a huge surprise.  Machine or sweat shop made items are not high quality.  They will not hold up to time and wear.

In other words, they will get what they pay for.

But I bought my yarn on sale.  Do I use that price?

If you buy your yarn on sale, I would recommend not using that price, but the regular price the yarn retails for.  That way if you need to make the same item again with the same yarn but need to buy more, your price will already cover the yarn not being on sale at that time.

Compare Prices

If you are still unsure of what to charge for something, look on the selling sites for similar items and see what those are selling for.  Then you can price your items accordingly.

Geographic Area Dictates Price As Well

Don’t forget that items that sell for higher prices in places that are known for artists and tourism will not sell for as much in small towns and lower populated areas.  Also places where the income is lower will need to have lower prices on handmade items than in places where income is higher.

Therefore you should always take into consideration where you live, who you are selling to, and how much people can pay for handmade, unique items.

So how much should I charge?

When considering how much to charge for something, it really all comes down to 3 things:  location, price of supplies, and personal consideration.  Each person values their time and effort differently.  Therefore, it is a personal preference as to how much each item is worth when selling it.

Is it too high?  Is it priced too low??

Only you can be the judge of that.  Just because it doesn’t sell at a certain price does not mean it’s priced too high.  Only that the right person hasn’t seen it yet to buy it at that price.

Remember This

There will always be people who will complain about the price.  ALWAYS.  And there will always be people who will offer you a lower price.  Therefore it is better to price your items on the high side so you do have room to for those that offer less.

And if they still complain about the price being too high, here’s a suggestion on how to deal with them.  Already know how much the price for that same item is when using the hourly wage price calculation.  Then explain to them that if you were wanting to get paid a hourly rate for your work like they get paid at their job (tell them what that per hour rate is and how long it took to make the item along with cost of materials) that the price would be this amount instead (tell them the higher price) and that you are wanting to give them a price cut to begin with.

Most people really have no clue how long it takes to make these things.  While putting it into perspective for them may not cause them to pay the price you are asking, at least then they will now be enlightened.  Or not.  Some people can never be enlightened…

Just remember to not be rude.  State the facts in a matter of fact manner.  And always with a smile.  If you keep on smiling to rude people, it makes them feel uncomfortable.  I love doing that…

NEVER UNDER ESTIMATE THE VALUE OF YOUR WORK!!  Whatever you do, do NOT price your items too low.  Your time and effort is always worth more than you can ever earn for a certain piece.  Just consider it a gift to mankind at whatever price you sell it for because you will always deserve more than you earn.

After all, it is art.  Always.  ART.  No matter if it’s a hat, scarf, or blanket.  And whoever buys it will treasure it for what it is.  ART.  Love is put in every piece.  If even made just for selling, you love the craft, or you wouldn’t do it.  Not like you are working in a sweat shop with no option otherwise.

In short, again, YOU ARE WORTH IT.  Price your work accordingly.  Is it correct?  Yes.  If you are comfortable with the price, then it is correct.  Even then, it’s probably too low.  But as long as you are happy with what you are paid, then it’s worth it.  Don’t let others tell you otherwise.

And as a side note…  If you are taking a commission to make something for someone, please get at least half if not all the money up front.  That way you will not be out any money if they change their mind.  And NEVER give them the item until full payment is made.  I have seen so many lose money by trusting people to pay them after they receive the item.  Unfortunately, friendships have ended over this very thing.  Just be careful and get paid up front.

Keep on loom knitting those lovely projects whether they are for yourself, for loved ones as gifts, or for sell no matter what the reason.  YOU ARE WORTH EVERY PENNY!!!

4 Comments

  • I want the rest of the pattern for THE BALLERINA BABY SOCKS. It only gives instructions down to the heel and that’s it. I feel it should tell how long to knit from heel to toe and then the instructions to casting off or ending the socks. Otherwise the picture and the instructions to the heel is great but only half of the instructions are there. Thank you, Please send me the rest of the instructions.

  • I don’t know how you know what many of us are thinking. ? I have been wrestling with this question for a while myself. Thank you for your input. But, you didn’t offer any suggestions where.

  • Unfortunately this article was not about where to sell things. Only about pricing items. I am not in a position to endorse any website and other place to sell handmade items on this blog. Thank you for reading!

  • Nina,
    The entire pattern is there. Are you following this link? I can see the entire pattern on the page. Please let me know if you can’t find it. http://blog.knittingboard.com/archives/3387

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Apr 15, 2017

Twisted Pearl Stitch (double knit)

Knitting in double knit with Rib stitches can create so many varieties, but each one is a new stitch to use in many applications.  Rib creates a very stretchy knit that retains its shape.

stitch_taupe

 

With the Twisted Pearl Stitch, the back of this stitch looks just the same so it is a good one for showing both sides.

Very pretty and similar to our traditional Rib, but you will find  that the ribs are tighter in this stitch, and the same on both sides.

The background weave shows an angle strand when the rib is opened. (See up close insert.)  Be sure to work with an even number of stitches.

 

twisted_purl_graph

 

 

 

 

 

0         1          2         3           4         5         6         7           8         9          10       11       12

Loom:  10” knitting loom or any loom with 22 + pegs with a width of 1 cm between rows of pegs.

Yarn:  Any #4 worsted weight yarn in wool, acrylic or blend. Sample square is knit with Lion Brand Heartland.

Abbreviations:  L=left, R=right

close up twisted

Close up detail of this stitch with color background.   

Instructions:

Cast On 22 stitches in pattern working L to R with at least (1) open peg to L of slip knot.

(Option would be to cast on with stockinette, lay anchor yarn, and wrap in pattern for row #1)

So, let’s see how it looks on the loom:  We are creating a square that is approximately 10″ X 10″ just to learn the new stitch.  When complete, makes a great wash cloth.

 

Step 1:  Start with a slip knot on peg 2 top.twisted_purl1

Step 2:  Wrap straight down around peg 2 bottom.

Step 3:  Bring yarn back to peg 1 and wrap around top peg from inside to outside and straight down around bottom peg #1.

Step 4:  Bring yarn from bottom peg 1 to top peg 4, wrap around top of peg and down to bottom peg 4 and wrap.

Step 5:  Go back to peg 3 top wrapping to L and down around the bottom peg.

Step 6:  You will see that the repeat is to skip a peg, wrap the next peg, top to bottom pegs straight down, and then go back to skipped peg and wrap the pegs around top, going straight down to bottom peg. Then repeat skipping the next stitch.

Step 7:  Work in this manner across the 22 pegs. Lay a piece of anchor yarn.

Turn the loom around, so that you are again working from L to R. This shows the return over the anchor yarn.

twisted_purl2

Move yarn to 2nd stitch and repeat the process starting with step 3.

Continue working this row for the design.

Stitches ready to hook over.

 

Row is complete

Row is complete.

 

 

 

 

 

Rib Stitch Variations! Twisted Purl Stitch (tan) Spiraling Rib Stitch (pink), and the Bamboo Stitch (white).

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Apr 3, 2017

Slip Stitch Braid: Stitchology 31

This lovely stitch is perfect for spring knitting.  It contains pretty braids that almost look woven in appearance.  This technique is created by using slipped stitches combined with 1 over 2 cables.  Don’t let those cables cause you any dismay, because they are super simple to work with the help of that elongated slipped stitch.  Repeated throughout a project, this stitch makes me think of baby knits, socks, or even a lovely hat (anything that the back isn’t going to necessarily be a feature).  Change the color every two rows and the look goes from delicate to Wow!

We have changed the format just a little bit for our Stitchology Column.  Each of the featured stitches will be explained row by row via both written and video instructions.  We will be focusing on highlighting the repeating stitch pattern itself, so that you can enjoy the freedom of putting these new stitch patterns to use in your own projects as creativity strikes.  We hope you will enjoy this new way of learning new stitches with us! :)

Find all the previous Stitchology Columns at this link here.

 

Special Stitch Instructions

To work this pattern in the round, such as for a hat, use the Repeating Pattern Rows chart, and make sure to read it from right to left for each row, rather than alternating sides each time.  Also, cast onto your loom in a clockwise direction, using a number of pegs that is divisible by 5—the number of stitches required for each pattern repeat.

When the pattern uses the term “knit” or “k”, please use the true knit stitch or the u-stitch, not the e-wrap.

**The stitch pattern does call for e-wrapping particular stitches. Wrap them, but do not knit them off until it is time to work these e-wraps into a row.  When it is time, knit off the stitch and then make sure to untwist the loop before working.

The cables in this pattern involve trading the loops of 3 pegs in the correct order. They consist of a 1 over 2 Right Cross [1/2RC] (a cable with the sts running to the right), and a 1 over 2 Left Cross [1/2LC] (a twist with the sts running to the left).  They are worked as follows:

[1/2RC]:  Worked over 3 pegs: Lift the 2 loops from the pegs on the right and place on a cable needle.  Lift the loop on the left and move it to the farthest peg on the right.  Place the 2 held loops onto the 2 pegs on the left.  With the working yarn, knit the 3 pegs.

[1/2LC]:  Worked over 3 pegs: Lift the 2 loops from the pegs on the left and place on a cable needle.  Lift the loop on the right and move it to the farthest peg on the left.  Place the 2 held loops onto the 2 pegs on the right.  With the working yarn, knit the 3 pegs.

*An easy way to remember which direction to go is to remember to hold the stitches onto a cable needle on the side of the directional slant.  So…for a right cable, hold the loops on the right.  For a left cable, hold the loops on the left.

Chart for Repeating Stitch Pattern

Slip Stitch Braid, Repeating Pattern

Slip Stitch Braid, Repeating Pattern with Color Stripes

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

*Note: The squares in the chart that are bordered with a pink square are the repeating pattern rows.  The squares outside the pink border are set-up rows to be worked only once, before the repeating rows. The chart on the right shows where to change colors, if an alternating color stitch is desired. 

Repeating Pattern Rows for working as a flat panel (Begin 1st Row from right to left/clockwise):

Set-Up Rows

Row 1:  k all sts.

Row 2:  *EW1, k4, rep from * to end.

Row 3:  *k4, S1, rep from * to end.

Repeating Pattern Rows

Row 4: *S1, k2, EW1, k1, rep from * to end.

Row 5: *k1, S1, 1/2RC, rep from * to end.

Row 6:  *EW1, k2, S1, k1, rep from * to end.

Row 7:   *k1, 1/2LC, S1.

Repeat Rows 4-7 until desired length.

**Note:  When finishing the stitch pattern, omit the EW in the 2nd to last row and the S1 in the final row. 

Repeating Pattern for working in the round (Begin from right to left/clockwise):

Set-Up Rounds

Round 1:  k all sts.

Round 2:  *k4, EW1, rep from * to end.

Round 3: *k4, S1, rep from * to end.

Repeating Pattern Rounds

Round 4: *k1, Ew1, k2, S1, rep from * to end.

Round 5: *k1, S1, 1/2RC, rep from * to end.

Round 6: *k1, S1, k2, EW1, rep from * to end.

Round 7:   *k1, 1/2LC, S1, rep from * to end.

Repeat Rounds 4-7 until desired length.

**Note:  When finishing the stitch pattern, omit the EW in the 2nd to last round and the S1 in the final round. 

Have questions or comments?  Please feel free to leave a message for Bethany in the comments below.

2 Comments

  • Which cast on method would you use for this pattern?

  • Hi Margo :)

    You can use whichever cast on you prefer. My personal favorite and the one that I pretty much use every time is the Chain Cast On. I like this one because I feel it most closely matches the Basic Bind Off, which is my go-to bind off method. ;)
    Bethany~

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