Saturday, August 13, 2011

The Dog Days of Summer

Good morning, friends and fellow crafters!

I know, there is no excuse for my long hiatuses from blogging.  This time I blame it on this beautiful summer weather - we've had a few hot and sticky days in Chicago but generally we've been lucky, with days in the 80s and nights in the 60s and 70s.  I've been getting back into running (something I haven't done seriously since high school cross country!) and trying to enjoy this weather before the Chicago winter returns.  Still, no excuse - so here's what I've been up to craft-wise!

The last show I did was in late June, the Green Music Fest in the Bucktown/Wicker Park neighborhood, in affiliation with Urban Folk Circuit.  it was my first outdoor festival and mostly a success!  The day was a little slow going and while I had a lot of interest didn't sell much, but then I had a lot of customers in the last hour or so which made the day worth it.  Not sure if I will do that particular festival again next year, but my worries about selling crochet/knit goods in the summer were alleviated, you CAN do it!

I have been taking a small, planned break from craft shows over the past two months.  I added 2 more models to my Etsy site: we now have my sister Dani, and friends CoryMegan and Liz.  I am in the process of updating photos on my existing items and weeding out a lot of the items I had posted to my site (for example, I am re-vamping my design on the coffee cozies so those have come off for the time being).  Right now I only have about 30 items in the shop, but they are the stronger items I think.  Once I get those listings in shape I will be adding more items - I have a lot of accessories yet to photograph (hair clips, headbands, etc).  Still struggling with the baby items though - I'm not crazy about my hat-on-a-bench photos and I have a few baby headbands that I am at a loss on how to photograph.  Anyone have an adorable baby girl I could borrow for a couple of hours? :)

I have also been working on several holiday orders for friends and family.  I am so lucky to have people that support my business, and it's been fun going on "make what you think this person will like" instructions for most of the orders, because custom projects are always my favorite.  I need to kick these in to gear and hopefully get all of them done by the end of August so I can spend more time getting my fall/winter stuff made for my Etsy shop and shows - planning to try and get in to at least 2-3 shows between mid Sept and December, which will bring me to about half a dozen for my first year selling.  A little slow moving but not too bad, I guess!

Oh wait, is it that time already?!  Yes, it that I've been selling through the spring I have a nice inventory of headbands and accessories ready to rock and roll, but my hat/scarf/earwarmer/winter wear inventory is looking quite pathetic.  Not to mention I would like to add some new products before the holiday shopping season (ideas: leg warmers, fingerless gloves, mens hats - I'm open to other suggestions!).  So yeah, I should probably get working on that.

So it's back to the grindstone this weekend - some photos to edit and crocheting to do (I also have a baby blanket that needs to be finished by next weekend).  Also, my friend and renaissance man Eamonn (check out his freelance art websiteblog and band website for which he is the bassist) is helping me redesign my logo and business cards, so hopefully in a couple of weeks MasiDesigns will be all glammed up!

Enjoy this beautiful weather everyone!  More to come soon, hopefully accompanied by some lovely new product photos!

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