I really enjoy listening to podcasts when I'm crafting. I'm hooked on some of the usual suspects like Serial, Undisclosed and This American Life. I'm also hooked on some crafty, maker related podcasts like Prairie Girls Knit and Spin, the Knitmore Girls and, most recently, Have Company.
I confess, I've been binge listening to Have Company since the end of last week. Its really inspiring to hear the variety of guests Marlee Grace has on. After listening to a wide variety of artists and makers, my wheels really started turning. I started pondering different aspects of my shop and the direction of my shop.
In my mind, the earliest beginnings of Saved by Kate date back to denim quilts made for my sons' bunk beds. First my sons, then my daughter, then my daughter's boyfriend, then my other daughter, then my sister, then my daughter's new boyfriend...one quilt organically led to the next one.
The memory quilts have followed a similar path, one that feels like a natural progression, rather than a business plan. Yet a business plan is what it has become. A close friend, and my first paying customer, just responded to pictures of my latest effort with, "you are really an extraordinary crafter of these and must continue to market them to the paying customer." Given that she is an amazingly talented seamstress, my heart is singing (or screaming, OMG, OMG, OMG!!!!!)
So what does this all amount to in practice? Well, yesterday I took a deep breath and put some business cards out on 2 community bulletin boards. This morning when someone in my yoga class asked what I was doing later, I told her I was sending my latest memory quilt off to its owner and offered to show pictures. I ended up showing her several of my projects. In a sense I outed myself to the class, which is something I need to do more often. I've gotten good at this in some venues and remain not so good in others. The conversation this morning was a good first step.
For the future? I need to replenish my t-shirt yarn a bit. I'm working on a prototype for a possible class. There's a fairly local craft show that I think would be a great venue for me but I need to see how much inventory I can build up before applying. In the just for me category, I'm knitting socks, lots of socks and their mine, all mine!!
I leave you with two pics of the finished memory quilt. (I'm still working on the photography piece of this, especially the lighting.) Let me know what you think.