There Are No Knitting Police

Welcome Sisters and Brethren! I am sitting down to my knitting circle again today with more that just knitting, won’t you join me?

I wrote last time about knitting anxiety and the pressures that I put on myself (as all of us do) to be as productive as possible. I’m still not sure what drives me to make lists of the crafty things I “need to get done,” and I have yet to master reminding myself that it is for joy that I engage in crafts. However, I did recently give myself some breathing room to work on some things that were not part of my silly list. Because, as a number of knitters have said to me before, “There are no knitting police.”

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I do love a good hand embroidered tea towel!

Bearing in mind that no knitting authorities are coming to check up on my progress, critique my technique or point out my mistakes, I got out an entirely different craft: embroidery. I do love embroidery, cross stitch and needle point crafts. When I sit with my cup of coffee and serenely stitch a cute little adornment onto a tea towel, a magical thing happens: I become my Grandma.

My inner child drifts out of my body and watches me. She remembers the smell of early morning coffee at Grandma’s farmhouse; the crisp cool of the large, drafty living room; the table full of thread, needles, beads and all manner of crafting tools; the enormous picture window looking out onto a frosty field where Grandpa’s horses are grazing. In these private, sentimental moments I remember the joy that I am meant to feel when I engage in making. I reconnect to a simpler, happier me.

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I didn’t have Grandma’s ribbon candies, so mints will have to do. 

There are no knitting police, we only police ourselves. Making lists of To Do’s in my crafts is not a bad thing necessarily, but we all need to find that balance between practicality and bliss. My stash of supplies and tools may seem a mountain and my list of planned projects endless, but the end results (useful tho they are) cannot be the only reason I push myself to craft. I need to enjoy the process. Allow myself to recall how what I make today is not just useful tomorrow, but brings me closer to yesterdays that I cherish and should not overlook.

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Dog Mom’s coffee never quite smells like Grandma’s coffee somehow. 

So yes, I have lost track of where I “should be” in my list of things to craft and make. Yes, I am hopping between crafts. Yes, I have cast on socks before I have finished other projects – and, yes, with yarn I had intended to use for other things! But there are no knitting police, and today I am going to allow myself to be OFF DUTY. My knitting and crafting is a mental vacation. A brief stay in a place of peace, with a few sentimental day dreams of memories past. I will not arrest myself for low productivity and I will not sit in a prison of my own making. Not today, anyway.

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The dogs pulled this yarn off the shelf, so I cast it on. 

I am wishing you all a happy, chaotic and blissful Sunday! I love and appreciate all of you who are joining my little crafty coven!

Until next time, Sisters and Brethren, I am with you.

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Knitting Anxiety: Why Do I Create It?

Hello Sisters and Brethren!

*Warning – I curse sometimes*

This weekend I have finally gotten some knitting done! For those who know me well, it would come as a surprise to find that I have gotten very little knitting in during the last two weeks. My normal modus operandi is to knit for a couple of hours every day, but truthfully for the last few months I have been struggling to get time in for my beloved hobby.

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Four at a time socks that I had to separate to get off the needles. 

I do have a part time job that I started in May, which has significantly cut in to my creative life. This frustrates me, but sadly income is necessary for all of us, and I have not yet made my knitting and yarny joy into a day job (still trying, tho!). Honestly, the job shouldn’t deter my knitting terribly, but because my time is now limited differently, I find I am creating my own knitting anxiety.

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Cauldron Bubble – new colorway that took me full a week to add to the shop after dyeing. 

 

True confession, I have some general anxiety and depression issues (self-diagnosed as I am too embarrassed to bring it up to a doctor as of yet). So it’s not entirely unusual for me to over think and over stress even the simplest of things. Where my knitting, yarn dyeing, designing and even blogging is concerned, I have a bad habit of giving myself arbitrary and unreasonable deadlines for completing projects. When I do not meet those deadlines or complete ‘enough’ projects, posts or new products in a given time period, I begin to feel very lazy, useless and bitterly bummed out.

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I finished a pair socks, finally! Yay!

I can’t quite say why I do this. I did grow up in small town (population 1,100 small) South Dakota in a stereo-typical hard work ethic valuing environment. Now, don’t get me wrong, I believe hard work can be a good thing and having goals and ambition can be beneficial. However, where I come from, creative endeavors are often meant for retirees or people considered to be hapless and burdensome. Practicality was always king and the idea of even having an artistic dream, let alone following one, was an aberration.

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Double Double Mini Kits – why do I think I need to be ready for Halloween already?

While how I grew up may be a factor in why I create stress in a hobby that should be a stress reliever, I’m not sure its the whole story. I am 31, and I feel somewhat that I need to take accountability for…well, for my own bullshit. My rational mind is aware that I am my own enemy when it comes to my anxiety. I choose what my self worth is measured by, so I do not need to measure myself by how much of my hobby I complete. Yet, continuously, I get angry with myself for not getting more done.

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House on the Hill – new colorway, and my dream house. 

I don’t have a happy ending answer for why I stress myself out. I am still working through why I become so anxious about things that should only be happy, and how to stop myself from doing it. But I wrote this blog post as I believe I cannot be the only knitter or crafter out there who struggles with this. Maybe we’re just struggling with anxiety in general, maybe life is a bit overwhelming sometimes and it just permeates every part of us and all that we do.

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Phantasm – a creation of the mind, much like my anxiety. 

Whatever the case, I think we all need to remember to forgive ourselves for what we perceive to be our short comings or failings. Knitting is meant to be my joy, my me time, my creative outlet and in some ways my self love. I am still working on just getting out of my own way and letting go of the need to measure my accomplishments or success as though it makes up who I am. It does not. So if you’re anxious about the things that are supposed to make you happy, you are not alone. And at least that’s something.

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Krypt Kicker – let’s all put our stress in a crypt and kick it!

Thanks for getting real with me for a while. Next time, I may have a happier post, or I may not. But I’m going to try and just be proud of myself that I did post, and not tell myself that I have a deadline for the next one.

May your knitting and hobbies feel magical and cure you of your ills! And when they don’t, forgive yourself. It’s ok.

Until next time Sisters and Brethren in yarn!

 

 

DTK Pop Up Makers June Market

Hello Fiber Sisters and Brethren!

I am late to the game getting this post up. For shame! Life does happen, tho, and part of my self love right now is not to be mad at myself. So here it goes!

In June I had an opportunity to go back to Downtown Knits in Apex to take part in the Indie Dyer and Makers Pop Up Market! It was lovely to meet some new makers and of course, meet all the lovely fiber friends who came see and support us!

Even if you are not local to Raleigh, NC, you should definitely check out these lovely human beings and their goods!

First up, Oak City Soap, Kevin and Brenda! They are a husband and wife team creating, as their awesome tag line says, “Luxury soaps for dirty people.” Don’t you love them already?!

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I got to sit next to Kevin and Brenda and chat them up during down time, they are charming and friendly and everything you want in small business owners! Their products are gorgeous and smell even better!

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I bought some guest soaps for my aunt and my sisters for our trip to New York (blog later), a bath bomb for myself that smells like Fruit Loops cereal (incredible!), and some bath bomb sprinkle as a gift for my aunt. They were a hit!

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If you are in the market for pampering yourself, you much check out Oak City Soap, even if they aren’t local to you. I will say, too, they have items for men like beard oil and shaving soap. I think men are often left out when it comes to luxury soap and shower sundries, so I appreciate that I can get gifts for everyone from Oak City Soap!

Across from me at the market was the very sweet Michelle of Full Bloom Coffee Roasters in Dowtown Garner, NC. She shares my taste for buffalo chicken and also for delicious coffee!

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Full Bloom Coffee Roasters has a brick and mortar location in Garner where they serve their hand crafted coffee drinks, breakfast and lunch grilled panini sandwiches as well as locally brewed beers- what else could you want?! Besides to bring your knitting!

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I couldn’t resist trying their Honey Brew, a cold brew coffee in a very cool brown glass bottle that makes me feel like I’m drinking an old timey magical elixir from one of those traveling apothecary carts. I don’t know about you, but I enjoy that feeling! And the coffee was spectacular! What I love about their coffee is that it has coffee flavor and does not have that burned bitter taste that big commercial chains (you know who they are) tend to have.

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If you are in the Garner area, do stop in and see them! Have some coffee and panini, maybe stay long enough to enjoy a beer and some knitting! If you aren’t able to stop in, then check out their website for Full Bloom Coffee Roasters and order online! You won’t be sorry and you’ll be supporting the kind of small business that cares about creating a quality product that also happens to be Organic, Fair Trade, and Rainforest Alliance Certified. So you can feel even better about that glorious caffeine kick!

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You know the last maker that joined me at Downtown Knits for the Pop Up Market: it’s Miss Barbara from Super Stitchy!

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As per usual, Miss Barbara had a beautiful booth full of all the knitting and yarny goodies you could want! Here always amazing self striping colorways, her yummy variegated skeins, all the progress keepers and stitch markers you could need to bling out your projects and fabulous fun project bags to house it all!

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All in all, it was another fun and rewarding experience to hang with some hand makers and meet new fiber friends! Thank you again to Michele of Downtown Knits for putting it on in her wonderful shop! Stay tuned for the next Pop Up Market!

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As I have rebranded, I will have to rethink my booth set up to fit my new magical, mystical theme. I’m excited to relable my yarns and think up how to work my new mystical mojo to create a more cohesive brand! Wish me luck!

Thank you all for stopping, reading, and maybe even clicking to shop these lovely makers!

See you for the next installment in the Sisteresque Fibers saga!

Happy Friday the 13th!

Hello Fiber Friends!

You may or may not have noticed – there’s a new look, a new logo and a new name! I have rebranded to Sisteresque Fibers!

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No need for you to change the blog you follow, the Instagram or twitter, not even my Etsy shop. I have updated it all to reflect the new branding.

Change is good! As I am working on self love, self acceptance and just being more me, I needed a change to my business that would better reflect my particular interests. I love the occult, the creepy and the weird and I always have! In fact, some of you may have noticed, I also have brand new audio podcast with my sister called Sisteresque (like how I keep it in the family?) which you can find at www.sisteresque.com as well as on Stitcher, Itunes, and hopefully soon Spotify and Google Play!

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A Coven Wedding – you’re all invited! One of my new colorways for the new brand!

I hope this new brand will help me to have a more specific focus and that you, my yarniac followers, will grow and explore the mystical, the magical and the self with me.  If I can teach myself the website ropes a bit more, I hope to move my shop here to my website rather than Etsy, but baby steps. Part of my self love and self acceptance is knowing I can’t do it all at once.

Also, I’m pretty proud of my logo. I went ahead and figured out how to make one myself! Its a simple and a bit slap dash, but I love it for that.

Thank you all for checking out my site and for your continued support! Every like, every comment, every follow and yes, every purchase from my shop, gives me a boost in more ways than I can tell you. I love you all!

Happy Friday the 13th!

I’m with you Sisters and Brethren 🙂

Episode 3: You Won’t Believe It!

Hello Fiber Friends! Barb and I are back with another So Cute We’re Dying Episode!

You can watch it on YouTube and check out the goodies we talk about here in the notes!

Yarns we talk about:

Tina Tape Yarn by Wool and the Gang (Persephone Tee)

Super Stitchy

Machete Shoppe Yarn

Desert Vista Dye Works Yarn

Carillon Fiber Studios Yarn

Haute Knit Yarn

Olann Yarns

Hey Lady Hey

Patterns we talk about:

Persephone Tee by Haleigh Overseth (that’s me! still in tech editing, stay tuned!)

Sock Head Hat by Kelly McClure

The Hitchhiker Shawl by Martina Behm

Gull Beach Shawl by Super Stitchy

Boxy Sweater by Joji Locatelli

Mesa Sweater Wrap by Romi Hill

Bags and Notions makers we mention:

High Flying Kiki

Shop Sew Flo

Knit for Brains

Molly Klein Designs

Needles we talk about:

Signature Arts Needles

Knit Pro Zings Melodies of Life Set

ChiaoGoo 9 Inch Circs

Hiya Hiya Sharps 

Addi Turbo Sock Rockets

Thanks for watching everyone! Until next time!

 

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