Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Tidy Mind, Tidy Stitches: Knitting and Crochet Blog Week Day 3


Knitting and Crochet Blog Week


Today is Day 3 of the week-long Knitting and Crochet Blog Week. I do not normally write so many blog posts, so this is a great challenge for me. Normally, I would be posting an artisan interview during the week, but it may be postponed until next week (sorry Sarah).

I found a New Skills blog post (Knitting and Crochet Blog, Day 2) by a fellow amigurumi designer very interesting. You can check out the post by Fresh Stitches here.

It is 6am local time (first draft), and I had a little giggle when I saw the title for today’s post, especially the part about a Tidy Mind. This morning, I could almost say that my mind is near empty ;D Day 3 Topic: How I Keep Organized.


Day Three: 30th March. Tidy mind, tidy stitches.

How do you keep your yarn wrangling organised?

I’m a motivated person, but I’m not a particularly organized person. I organize in intense spurts when the disarray reaches some critical point. I try to do a little tidying each day (just before my husband comes home from work), and I aspire to become better organized in the future. In two months I will be moving, and I hope to find time purge and organize with this move. 

Yarn Stash. When we first moved into our condo I wasn’t into crocheting at this level, and we don’t really have space for me to have a dedicated studio. I keep the bulk of my very large yarn stash in a bookshelf in the spare room (Connie’s Room, named after our previous roommate). Yarn is organized by color, and since I specialize in amigurumi, I like to play with every color of yarn that I can find. I order yarn in bulk a couple of time each year. I keep one of each color on the bookshelf and put the rested boxes. Two weeks ago I received a yarn shipment, and that is one of my two cats investigating.


During the day, I crochet downstairs in my living room. I bring out a few balls of yarn, a small bag of stuffing, and a handful of rattles or key chains downstairs and get to work. I wish that I could say that when I’m done with each color, that I quickly return it to it’s bookshelf home, but I seem to amass a collection of yarn in the living room throughout the week. I try to tidy this satellite stash on a weekly basis- normally Fridays when I am getting ready for the Saturday Historic Farmers’ Market.

Digital Organization. I keep my goals and tasks organized using Google Calendar. I have a very long task list with blog post ideas, new design ideas, reminders to order supplies, meetings, and orders. And to make myself extra accountable, I post my daily goals on Facebook.

For the business end, I keep track of stock, pricing, consignment/wholesale orders, balances, sales, and expenses in an Excel spreadsheet. I highly recommend that anyone who has a craft business to keep this sort of information. It helps me see if I am reaching my goals. I can easily check to see how sales were each month and compare them to the previous year. I can sort my expenses to figure out the best places to buy supplies, and I have a formula in my spreadsheet that converts the amount of time I spend crocheting into a dollar amount with both wholesale and retail prices.

I do not have any formal photography training, so I make up for any lacking skill by taking an unimaginable amount of digital pictures. Any that are out of focus are deleted but the rest are cropped, adjusted, and saved in the proper folders. I also save any print outs, craft show application forms, and patterns on my computer (which I should really start to back up). I even keep each version of a pattern that I am designing.

digital organization spreadsheet



And Always, Organizing is a work in progress!


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