Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Yarnity, yarn, yarn...

I Love Yarn. I think it takes a very cold, calloused person with a frigid soul to not appreciate, if not love, yarn. Who can resist the come-hither squishiness of a ball of yarn? Who can avoid grabbing, with child-like delight, the balls of wool and mohair? Even the synthetics like acrylic have a luscious appeal. And there is a purely magical aura to those wild yarns made with bits of silk, soy, and bamboo. Bamboo! Will wonders never cease?

When we cradle a ball or skein of yarn, the best moments of our childhood come rushing in around us like a warm bath. Balls and skeins nestle in a basket or a bin like so many easter eggs, awaiting your discovery. A favorite sweater or afghan is recalled as your nuzzle the merino wool. Hug the ball of mohair, and you are once again holding your first teddy bear or the kitten you got for your 4th birthday. Draw out the strands of novelty yarn, and you are transported to the Halloween you were a mermaid or a dinosaur. You don't have to be at all versed in fiber crafts to be captivated by the Call of the Yarn.

For those of us who do knit, felt, or crochet, the yarn has a special voice. We will spend ridiculous amounts of money on hand-spun, hand-dyed strands. When we have a unique and particularly desirable skein in front of us, we contemplate it like Michelangelo finding the form in the marble. We circle it, court it, ask it what it wants from us. We wait for the yarn to reveal its true self through color, thickness, and the ever-pressing concern of amount. We know we cannot press the yarn past what it is willing to give us. Miscalculation can lead to disaster and shame. Yes, shame, I say! For it is always upon our own shoulders when we fail to read the yarn. However, when we successfully tap into the soul of the yarn, glory abounds and beauty reigns! Magic happens. The spirit of the skein is given shape through the artist, and the sum total of comfort and happiness on Earth is increased a little.

Oh, Beauty, thy name is YARN!

Monday, July 14, 2008

An Adventure in the Arts

I was laid off my job about three and a half months ago. I figured this was as good a time as any to explore selling my own jewelry designs. I got a shop up and running on Etsy (www.stagebunny.etsy.com). Many people on Etsy are able to support themselves on their work. I am not yet one of those people. I get giddy from one sale, and the euphoria from that one sale can last for days. I had pulled from the collective pool of Etsy wisdom that it can take a couple of years before one actually sees any kind of profit. That makes sense to me. It's like any other business, right?

I feel pretty good about this. Even though I will have to get, at the very least, a part-time employment position soon, I am dedicated to the long-term goal of making my little business go. I have already learned so much, including the fact that the majority of the time I spend on my business is not in the studio creating, but shopping for ads, promoting, looking for new materials, etc.

Things I have done so far to build my little empire include:
~Buying up affordable ads on Project Wonderful.
~Ordering and distributing some truly beautiful business cards
~Joining groups like Indiepublic that are relevant to my business
~Talking about my business and wearing my pieces while I'm out and about.
~Keeping track of my sales and what advertising I do on a monthly basis so I can get some idea about any correlations.

I really need to get out of the mentality that I am an unemployed person with a hobby. When people ask me what I do, I need to start saying, "I'm a jewelry designer." If I don't believe in it myself, it's never going to happen. I want this, so onward and upward.

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

Notes from the World's Most Absent Blogger

I'm a woman of few words...sometimes. This statement alone will send people who know me into fits of laughter. But the fact is, I often find it hard to write. My internal editor is so very insistently vocal that I often give up before I begin. And there is also the question of feeling my life is not all that read-worthy. But it's living-worthy, so I guess I should have no qualms about chronicling it. Today marks (yet another) promise to myself to keep things going on my little elbow of the intertubes.

Since I last posted, I have fallen in and out (and in again!) of love, lost a job, found about a million new interests, moved, moved again, changed life direction entirely, made some new friends, revisited old friendships, and let a few people go.

Despite the changes, I feel more like somebody I was "back when" instead of a "new me". Something about change keeps us young. It forces us onto the path of exploration and growth. Resourcefulness, flexibility in mind and spirit, and the wonder of our own being seem to leak away from us as we get lulled into the illusion of security.

Anyway, through this blog, I'd like to challenge myself to get out there and be successful at seeing things through. I've got a lot of plates sitting on sticks right now. They're not even spinning yet, but I'd like to get them going and see what I'm made of. If this seems disjointed now, don't worry. All will be revealed.

So, consider this my re-introduction post. I am Catalina Keller and I will be your blogger today. Exits are at the top of the screen and to the side of the keyboard, but I hope you will stay a while.