Monday, June 30, 2008

Crafty Bastards Silver Spring '08

What a day! I'm still recovering from it. It was so very horribly hot and humid, I thought that I wasn't going to sell a thing...but I almost sold completely out! I brought about 40 skeins of yarn, a bunch of batts, a basket of felty baubles, and two pairs of handspun & handknit fingerless gloves. This is what I brought home with me:

crafty bastards - leftovers

Three skeins of yarn, some felty baubles (not pictured), and the leaves I embroidered during the show. It was a fast job packing my booth up, let me tell you! I felt sort of bad that I sold out, since my table started looking pretty pathetic halfway through the show, but I'm also in shock because I really didn't think I would sell even close to as much as I did! It was a bit of a livesaver, though, since I was worried that I'd be tight financially this month. Now I can afford to go to Jacey's spinning workshop next month! I'm so very grateful for all the folks who bought - or even just complimented - my yarns. I hope they bring you hours of happy crafting!

I loved talking to everyone at the show. Some highlights were getting to meet Jocelyn, a very good customer of mine. I've always hoped I'd run into her sometime, since she lives so close! She was adorable and sweet and bought me a bottle of water, which probably saved me from dying of heat exhaustion later on. I also met one of Cosy's friends (I had Cosy's book with me and was showing it to people - and quite a few people already knew of her work!).

More pictures of my stuff at the show:

crafty bastards - felty baubles

Pick-your-own felty baubles...these were a big hit!

crafty bastards - wool novelty yarns

Lots of people ask me where I get my fibers from, and I'm always happy to tell them!

crafty bastards - vegan yarns

My vegan yarns also generated a lot of discussion, and several people told me that they were glad they got to feel the fibers in person. I had fun pointing out which yarns were made from bamboo and which had recycled plastic bottles in them.

crafty bastards - self striping

My self-striping yarns sold out fast. I think that was the first thing I ran out of! I brought along a scarf that I knit from the original skein of my Selkie striping yarn, and that helped a lot to show how much mileage you get out of a skein.

crafty bastards - basket o' patchwork

A lovely basket of fresh patchwork yarns.

crafty bastards - baaatts!

Batts! I sold every last batt I brought, plus a braid of handdyed organic cotton. I tried to make the novelty batts as fun as possible - they're full of stuff like sequins, fabric scraps, and the ninja batt has some black tulle in it.

crafty bastards - hand dyed fairytale yarns

Lastly, I had some hand-dyed skeins of commercially spun organic cotton & bamboo blend yarn. This yarn is so lovely. All the colorways are inspired by fairytales - the ones in this picture are The Frog Prince, The Princess + The Pea, and Snow White + Rose Red.

I made all the tags and signs for the show, and even my business cards, out of recycled brown paper grocery bags from Trader Joes. We mostly use cloth bags for shopping, but every once in a while we forget to bring them, so I save the bags to cut up and re-use. I love the texture of heavy brown paper bags! I either cut them up and write directly onto them, or I cut them into sheets the same size as regular letter paper and then stick them in a copy machine/printer and copy designs onto them. I'm no good at graphic design, so I just stick to handwriting/drawing all my labels etc.

I'm also grateful to the Crafty Bastards organizers for putting on such a fun, amazing show! They handed out hundreds (thousands? There were a lot) of Crafty Bastards tote bags (shown in the first photo), which were very handy because people had a place to stash their crafty buys. I brought some plastic bags just in case, but it was much nicer to see everyone using reusable cloth bags. I thought that was really great of them!

I have a backlog of custom orders and wholesale orders that I'll be focusing on working through this week, but I'll be spinning up more fun yarns for the shop soon. And there will be a shop update tonight with the few yarns that didn't sell at the show!

P.S. Someone asked for the recipe for the organic green tea chai that I mentioned in my last post. I just use the Yogi green chai and then add either almond milk or soymilk. It makes a great summer morning tea, because the milk cools it down a lot. And it's so very delicious! It gives me a reason to drag myself out of bed early in the morning.


Karolion said...

what can you use felty bobbles for? Are they only for spinning?

Anonymous said...

You completely and totally inspire me. I have long dreamed of being a full-time spinner- and you show that it can be done!! Your work is beautiful!!

cosymakes said...

aw... thanks for taking the book! i just applied for the next crafty bastards. are you going? might we finally meet?

Shannon said...

Yay! Glad the show was such a success for you! I've been bringing glass jars full of felted baubles for display at my farmer's market booth, and people started asking me how much I would sell them for. Now I make sure I bring them every week and sometimes I sell a whole jarful at once. I never thought that folks would want to buy them...I just thought they looked sweet in the jars. :)

Sara said...

congrats on such a successful day!

Jocelyn said...

Yay! I am so glad the show was such a success. It was fun meeting you; hopefully we can get together some time! You'll be happy to know that I have been petting my organic cotton and patchwork yarns obsessively. :)

Anonymous said...

Glad the show was such a success! We met at Steph's spin in and I remember you mentioning that you didn't have a car. I'm going to Jacey's workshosp too, so if you want to carpool, let me know.

Nancy (NStreicher at aol dot com)

folktale fibers said...

Thanks, everyone!

Karoline, you can use them for whatever you want! I've had people tell me they use them for beads, buttons, embellishments, decoration, cat toys...

Cosy, I'm going to try to go the the fall crafty bastards!

Nancy, thank you so much for the ride offer! I'm pretty sure I have a ride there, but I'll write down your email just in case.

Jacki said...

I love so much that you make labels out of Trader Joe's bags. Congrats on a great show!

paula said...

I was so sad you didn't have any more at the end of the day! heehee... next time we should trade before it starts! ;)

I am still boggled at the people buying up yarn in 95 degree weather! said...

karolion asked the question I want to ask too~
and I am so glad your booth was so popular at the festival. 8^)

Amber said...

Glad the show was awesome! I took one of your cards for when my yarn diet is over. I run the veg*n craft*n group on ravelry, I just added you to our vegan/humane yarns list! Where do you get your wool fiber?

folktale fibers said...

Paula - Yes, definitely! Your handdyed bfl was scrumptious. I'm a little sad that I didn't get to look at anyone else's booth (except yours...but even then I just dashed over as everyone was packing up!)

Stacie - Thanks! I answered karolion's question about the baubles a couple comments back, in case you missed it.

Amber - Thanks! I get my wool from a couple different places - right now it's all mill ends ("waste" from large yarn companies) and small farm wool. I think I might write out a whole blog post soon about where I get my fibers from and what my criteria are etc, so check back in a week or two.

sewspun said...

Beautiful yarn!