Tuesday, December 31, 2013

In the Workroom Recap : Week 319 and 320

Happy New Year! Almost anyway. The last two weeks were pretty eventful as far as Christmas and power outages go so I thought I should get one last blog in before 2014 starts so I can pretend I had a spotless record of updates instead of one spotty month of a few updates all mashed in to a couple. I'm sure you guys don't mind! 

I spent the week before Christmas doing general work stuff and taking some extra time to make some gifts and do some holiday baking.

It was so nice to do some knitting for a change. I love sewing too but I went back to my craft roots and knit a couple thank you mittens and slippers for all the cutting and packaging/pricing help I had before the One of a Kind Show earlier this month. And Christmas shortbread cookies of course! My mom always made these as kid and I always hated them but somewhere along the way I decided it was pretty silly to not like shortbread. Kids!

I also managed to get the last of the Christmas orders out before we had a big icestorm that caused big tree branches to fall all over the place which left the Needlings headquarters without power for almost four days.

It was really pretty beautiful and calm with everything coated in ice but the short Winter days are made even shorter when the sun is down before 5pm so there wasn't a lot of daylight. I don't think I'll take the electricity for granted from here on out. Luckily it came back on Christmas Eve so the lights came on and so did the Christmas movies. 

As soon as the power was back and the Christmas celebrations were out of the way (in a good way I mean), I finished a custom fox!

I have made a small bunch of these guys in the last year and I hope to have more of them available at shows and stores in 2014. One thing that is hard to do when I get to make and sell lots of the same old favourites is spend time working on new things - but I'll fit it in somewhere!

After some work was out of the way, Lisa of Nerdbiskit and I made a visit to a new supply store not far away which was exciting and went pretty well - bulk stuffing found and lots of other goodies relevant to our interests.

Yep! I'll definitely be working this place in to the supply shopping when needed! Next year of course!

I hope you all have a safe and fun night ringing in the new year and I'll see you again next week, friends!

Thank you all for reading and for all the support in 2013 - it really means the world to me!

Happy New Year!

Can't wait to see what 2014 has ahead for us! See you next year!

Monday, December 16, 2013

In the Workroom Recap (and out of the workroom winter adventures) : Week 318

Hello again! I'm going to try my best to get back in the habit of our weekly workroom recaps now that this year's shows are out of the way but I admit I still feel a bit disoriented in terms of what day, month (and year?) it is! Pretty intense couple of months, you guys. 

This week was spent finishing some more custom orders and getting my to do list straightened away for the remainder of the year and in to prepping for next year's shows!  I just know the Spring One of a Kind show will pop up before I know it so there's no end to it really! 

I have been having a lot of phone sleeve orders/requests after they sold out at One of a Kind earlier this month so I'm sure I'll be making lots of those in the next little bit (which is awesome - thank you!). I also have some store restocks to take care of soon so there's still lots to do!
I did take a little time to do some holiday things and fun stuff out of the workroom and I'm sure there will be a few more opportunities for that in the next couple weeks with Christmas/New Year being just around the corner.

One of the first things on the list this week was to get the family Christmas tree! We headed over to Bennetts in Ancaster, one of my favourite local places, just 2 minutes down the road and picked out a good fluffy Fraser Fir! Callie had fun chewing on any branches that fell and Gus has been happily sitting under it.

It's only half decorated at best but in the next few days we'll be breaking out the baskets of handmade ornaments and old favourites to cover it with. Christmas is my favourite.

After our first bit snow storm...

and some quiet snow day knitting inside...

We headed in to Toronto on Sunday to check out City of Craft, one of my fave craft shows to visit!

So many great things to see that we just had to brave the snow for it! Luckily the roads were all mostly cleared and I would have been pretty sad if we didn't keep up this new winter tradition!

And that was it for the week! It feels like a month all put in to one week - but nope - one week! Now on to the next one! I hope you are all getting excited for holiday breaks and family times! See you soon, friends!

Saturday, December 14, 2013

One of a Kind Holiday Show and Sale 2013 Recap

Well, it's been a week since the show so I guess it's time to reflect on the gloriousness that was my first One of a Kind Holiday Show experience in blog form. 

I laughed, I cried, and then finally I slept! The week was amazing and I really want to thank everyone at One of a Kind Show and Sale Toronto for putting on an amazingly well organized huge production with smiles on their faces, all the lovely people who came by the booth to purchase a Needling or chat about my work, all my show neighbours and fellow vendors for being overall wonderful, and my amazing family and friends for visiting, helping and supporting me all the way through it! I really couldn't do this without all of you and I can't thank you enough! I feel like the luckiest maker in the world on a daily basis and I really appreciate each and every one of you for being a part of that. Holiday hugs all around!

Oh and the show went great! It was an exhausting, magical week and I can't wait to do it all next year! (Ok, I can wait.)

It was such a packed six days that there seems to be so many things to mention about it even though it all went by in a flash! The amount of work and lack of sleep that lead up to it was all worth it! I really must say it took the whole of this week to recover while still working away on custom orders. It was exhausting but the best kind of exhausting.

It was so much fun to see all the little kiddies run up to the booth and plop down on the floor and start playing with things! In a show with so much beautiful and somewhat untouchable art and fine craft, I'm glad to have provided some soft things to throw around.

This little guy's name was Gus and when he picked up my little Minou Kitties it melted my heart (and also made me think about my sweet little Gus the kitty back at home who I missed all week)! I had so many cute little conversations with little customers (and their parents) which was really the highlight of the show! Being able to meet and talk to someone who is buying something that you made with your two hands is a pretty magical thing. Having six busy days of it was really quite special.

As in the Spring show earlier in the year, I was lucky enough to have some Needlings featured in the kids fashion show again! I popped over to get a few pictures of these cute little ones carrying an art doll and a shy fox. Pretty adorable stuff!

In addition to meeting so many sweet new folks (including fellow vendors and neighbours that I will have to dedicate an entire blog to at a later date), I had the best visit and support from dear family and friends! My mom who was with me through the whole show I don't think knows just how much I appreciate her support. To have parents who encourage my creative endeavours and even want to participate in them is something I could not possibly take for granted. Even my dad who I spoke to every day on the phone while I was at the show was excited to hear any little detail I had to share about the show and I didn't go a day without hearing an "I love you" and a "I'm proud of you." I know that I am truly lucky.

Lucky for having such sweet friends too! Lisa and Tandy visited on the late night shopping day to say hello and I was so happy to see their faces! And there were so many other great visits from friends I didn't get pictures of throughout the week!

Despite not having much sleep that week. It really was easier than I thought it would be to keep a smile on my face the whole (well, most of the) time.

Thank you so much again for all the Needlings' support! I really could not do this without my family, friends, and customers! 

See you soon!

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

In the Workroom Recap : Week 314 & 315 (And let's face it, 316)

One of a Kind Show is now one week away for Needlings and the amount of things left to do will require a bit of a miracle to finish but I know it'll happen! Because blogging duties have been prioritized away a little bit and I've missed the last couple weeks of recaps, I just wanted to stop in a let you guys know what's been going on around here!

I will be back when One of a Kind Show is over and life can go on as usual but until then, feel free to keep in touch or up to date with Needlings on Facebookand Instagram where I will no doubt be taking and sharing pictures of the process of the rest of the pre show prep and then the show days too of course! Wish me luck! I hope to see some of you there!

Monday, November 11, 2013

In the Workroom Recap : Week 313

Hi guys! 3 more weeks until One of a Kind Show! No problem, I'm ready, no big deal, super casual, whatever.

So I'm silently freaking out here just a little bit but I'm still plugging away anyway and slowly building up stock and getting other little jobs crossed off the list one at a time. So far so good!

This week had a little birthday break at the end of it but I managed to finish up a bit batch of little Owlings as well as some other little display to-dos and regular orders so I think I deserved it!

Just a few on the go there, no problem! On to more littles this week and maybe a couple dolls here and there, just so much stuff!

Then birthday stuff! I had a couple lovely friend visits and family times and I'm happy to start my 30s with some of the best buddies ever who helped me with boring jobs like packaging cutting and tag stickering! Yep, pretty crazy party time.

I even got the cutest little portrait pillow from my dear from Lisa of Nerdbiskit! I love it!

30! It was a lovely little break weekend and now I'm all Needlings all the time from here on out! 

See you all next week, friends! Wish me luck!

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

In the Workroom Recap : Week 312

Hi guys! If you're visiting from my One of a Kind Artisan profile (there have been lots of you lately), thanks for checking in! I'm spending the month on a marathon sewing kick to have lots and lots of goodies for the show in December! I hope to meet you all there!


Last week had a fun little Halloween break in the middle of it but was mostly spent finishing up my last store restock order until post-One of a Kind life after December 8th! 12 Owl Mamas for Kid Icarus!

(I realize there are only 11 owls in this picture but one was in the box already before I realized I needed a photo! I have a lot on my mind lately guys.)

So once they were on their way to Toronto, I took about 5 minutes to cut some jack-o-lantern parts to pin to my orange dress. Instant pumpkin costume? Perfect.

Maybe next Halloween I'll have time to do something a little more interesting but this did the trick!

After my big restock order filling month, the supply closet was in desperate need of replenishing so I made sure to take care of that before a bit of a crafternoon of cutting parts!

After supplies were replenished, I took some time to work on display pieces for the show booth! At the risk of ruining some sort of surprise, my plan is to essentially cover my booth in pom poms so a plan needed to be made!

Nothing like a few extra lofty goals to add to the show prep final stretch! Luckily I've had a bit of a head start so I think it might be doable! We'll see anyway! Eventually anyway! There's still almost a whole month left. So that's good. I can do it. Right? You're right, totally doable. 

Luckily I have my wonderful mom and friends to help out a bit! The week ended with a great crafternoon with my crafty friend Lisa of Nerdbiskit who kept me company over a pot of tea and snacks and helped out with some little cutting jobs here and there. Best help ever! I could get really sappy about it but I'll spare you (this time)! There's a lot of happy work put in to Needlings and that makes me very happy. Oops, sap. 

Lots and lots of little Owlings are in the works this week so I better get back to sewing! I'll see you guys for this week's recap next week! Happy November!