Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Knitting vs. Etsy

I have been so incredibly busy since the beginning of February that I am amazed I have accomplished anything with my Etsy shop, stinkR. I declared 2013 "The Year of stinkR", but 2013 had other plans. I have had to reevaluate my priorities more than once and let something go this year, like cooking better or losing all the weight. But, never knitting.

Knitting is one of my passions. If I get time alone, you will find me browsing the aisles at craft stores, touching the skeins and sighing over buttons and bamboo needles. I love knitting! Inspiration strikes at any moment, in church (looking at the curtains behind the podium), at a restaurant (people-watching), or paging through a non-knitting related magazine (ooh, I could do that with yarn). I see stitches everywhere! I look at the purses ladies carry and mentally convert them into knitted bags, sometimes with metallic yarn and sometimes with feathery. Knitting is part of me.

My Etsy store is a branch of that part of me. While I know I need the store to sell my products, I don't need it to feel complete in my knitting. Sometimes, the store adds a pressure to my knitting that removes all the joy of the process. I start thinking I HAVE to knit and make new items to list because that is what the store is FOR. Right? There is no quicker way to stall my muse than to tell me it is something I have to knit. The muse flees, runs for the hills! The project list I have? Nothing goes right. I use the wrong yarn or the wrong pattern and the results are never pleasing. I shake my head. I step back. I walk away from the needles.

During this break, the answer always comes. Relax! Your knitting is your knitting, not Etsy's. You have the freedom to list one new item a day, or week, you choose! (Of course, I have goals for inventory, but that's another conversation) I go back to my WIP (works in progress, for you non-knitters), and usually frog (tear out) everything, pull the stitches out, and wind the balls back up. I start over.

Knitting is a process for me and the end result will hopefully be something lovely I can list in my shop and sell to someone who loves it almost as much. I have scarves in New Mexico and New York! That would never have happened without my Etsy shop. (mostly because I don't know anyone who lives in those places because everyone I know has something I knit) So, the shop is secondary to my passion, not the inspiration or the reason.

If I keep the perspective straight, the knitting just flows, and if the knitting flows, the shop gets filled. You know what I mean?