Tag Archives: Etsy

This is Community

Last week I received a message from Amanda at Fluff and Fuzz, you probably know her knitting patterns for toys, they are very cute and very popular, here’s one of them…

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Amanda told me (super politely) that she’d spotted some funny business over on MISI. Someone else was selling my knitting patterns, without my permission. This is called reselling and it’s stealing.

Reselling a knitting pattern without the permission of the pattern’s designer is illegal.

It’s illegal everywhere in the world.

It’s illegal even if you bought the pattern.

It’s also stupid, because knitting pattern designers have a world wide community and we look out for one another. Ravelry’s pattern database runs on this premise, there are designers who actually volunteer to ensure that newly posted patterns are not being resold. So, when I looked at the reseller’s “shop” I recognized other designers’ work and it was easy for me to tell them what was going on. I contacted three other designers in the end, two of them were toy designers.

There isn’t a handmade website in the world that will put up with reselling. I contacted MISI and within 24 hours the reseller was banned. The reseller did not have a chance to sell a single stolen pattern.

This is a thank you to Fluff and Fuzz and MISI for having such wonderful community spirit. It’s also a timely reminder to anyone considering reselling a knitting pattern. Don’t.

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SALE SEASON

2013 winter saleThis weekend only 10% off EVERYTHING in the Natty Knits Etsy shop. Enter code SEASON10 at checkout. Offer ends Monday November 25, 2013.

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Holiday Craft Fair – Advice to Myself Which May be Useful to Others

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Yesterday, I received an email from the PTA at my son’s school asking for crafters to book a table at the school craft fair on November 5th. The school has never had a craft fair before so it’s a completely unknown market. The chances are it will be small and filled with sticky fingered children.

And yet…the cost of the table is really low. Some of them must be knitters right? What if it’s fun? Maybe it’s time the parents and teachers saw what I can do?

Oh alright then.

I’ve had a table (or half) at some Craft Fairs before and never done well from it. This time I’m going to take all my experience and try to get it right. To that end, here is my advice to myself. I hope it will also be useful to you.

1. DISPLAY. Really, this is the most important thing. Previously I’ve neglected display, one time I even forgot to take a table cloth. This time I’m going for a home spun country feel, wicker baskets, undyed muslin tablecloth (well ironed) and wooden book stands.

2. KEEP IT SMALL. The scope can be huge, but there should be plenty of small items. I’m going to knit lots of holiday decorations, owls and baby balls. The more there is under $15, the more I can sell, probably.

3. GIVE THEM SOMETHING FOR NOTHING. Just make sure it’s got your name on it. I’ll print out copies of one of my free patterns and clip a business card to the top. That should do it.

4. TECHNOLOGY IS YOUR FRIEND. I’m planning to sell my digital patterns from an ipad at the table and I’m going to need one of those card readers for a smart phone (of course I will also have to borrow my husband’s smart phone).

5. PRACTICE YOUR CRAFT AT THE TABLE. Thankfully I am a knitter, not a spot welder.

6. SMILE. A school craft fair is no place for a snooty attitude.

Does anyone else have any tried and tested craft fair prep tricks? Please leave a comment, I need all the help I can get.

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Feedback

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I love to hear how knitters get on with my patterns. Of course it’s good to hear nice things, such as “I love your pattern & the helpful tips. I highly recommend this shop.”, but I also enjoy hearing from people who are struggling with a pattern, it’s really rewarding to help someone work it out.

Yesterday Etsy launched a new feedback system. It came as a bit of a surprise to me, as I’ve been off the knitting grid for a few weeks while I spent some time with my 6 year old son at the end of his Summer vacation. So on Tuesday morning, I finally sat down to send out customer feedback and discovered that it no longer exists! As an Etsy shop owner, this is a bit of a relief, one less bit of administration for me to fit in, plus rating customers is slightly weird, you don’t walk into a grocery store and receive a star rating on your shopping performance. At least, that never happens to me.

The other big change with Etsy feedback is that it’s now called Reviews and the “positive, neutral, negative” system has been replaced with stars. Natty Knits currently has 5 out of 5 stars and of course, I would like it to stay that way.

So next time you buy a pattern from the Etsy shop, please leave me some feedback, it will be great to hear from you.

And for all my Etsy customers who miss their feedback, thank you for buying from Natty Knits and happy knitting!

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Big Owl

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This is Big Owl. He is nine inches tall and quite a character. He’s knitted in Cascade Yarns Bulky Eco Wool (Natural/Ash). The pattern for this owl has been kicking around in my brain for about two years but I finally knitted one up this week.

Regular readers of this blog will know that it takes me a long time to do anything. Mostly this is a symptom of having too many other things to do. I have a day job, a small business, a six year old, no nanny and no cleaner (Most Mums function like this, that’s because we are all awesome).

Which is why I am surprised that I started working on Big Owl last week and here he is, almost finished except for his eyes, which aren’t sewn on yet.

The secret to my speediness this week is simply a throwback to when I started Natty Knits and my then two year old son was with me all the time. Before he was in school, I would knit while he was napping, or when he was fully engaged in lining matchbox cars up on the carpet, I would knit while I read to him or while he played in the sandbox at the playground. All that time I was knitting up new designs for toys, then usually unraveling them and starting again. This is exactly why I design toys, because they are small and can fit in an over-sized Mum bag.

This week has been the first week of my son’s Summer vacation and once again, I’ve been with him all the time. Of course, he needs a lot less attention now than he did when he was two, but that just means more knitting time. So, this week I was knitting Big Owl while my son perfected his lego pyramid with a windmill on it, while he read to me from a Nate the Great book or while he rode his bike around the playground with a classmate (a classmate who said “are you knitting again?!!”).

The pattern for Big Owl will be tested in the next few weeks and will be available for sale within a month. I may have more time to knit, but pattern making is still something that requires my full concentration.

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Instant Downloads from Etsy

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New style listing, now with instant download

I am very pleased to be able to share the excellent news that Etsy now offers digital patterns as instant downloads. This is quite a revolutionary move, it means that when you buy a Natty Knits pattern you no longer need to wait for me to email it to you. It means that I won’t forget to add the download to the email (yes that has happened). It means that the email won’t get lost in cyberspace. It means I can leave the computer for longer than 12 hours!

Can you tell I’m excited?

I have now uploaded the PDFs for all my patterns and changed the titles and photos to reflect that these are instant downloads. The shop looks really good, you should take a look.

I tested out the download process over the weekend, just to make sure it works from a customer perspective. Here’s what I found…

Immediately after you’ve paid for a pattern, there’s a payment completed screen, which now also contains a large blue box with “Files Ready to Download” written on it. Obviously if you press that button, you can download the PDF. But don’t despair if you miss that prompt.¬†

You will also receive an email from Etsy which will have a big blue button in it saying “View your files on Etsy”, this will also take you to your downloads.

And finally, you can also access your digital patterns whenever you are logged in to Etsy. There is a blue link on the top right of the page that says “Your Account”. Click that and choose “Purchases” from the pull down menu. Then click the big blue button that says “Files Ready to Download”. You can then open and save the pattern.

Your digital downloads are always attached to your Etsy account so you can download them more than once.

If you’d like more information about digital downloads on Etsy, please refer to their help section.

And to celebrate I’ve added a new 3 pattern deal to the Natty Knits shop. The Robot, Snake and Shark patterns are all instantly available and at a discounted rate of $6 for 3 patterns.

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Thank You!

2012 has been a really big year for Natty Knits. I’ve designed six new knitting patterns, and my work has been in a magazine, a festival poster and a calendar.

There are a lot of people who have helped this be such a successful year for me and I would like to say thank you to all of you…

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To all the knitters who buy my patterns, download the free ones, leave me great feedback, heart the patterns on Ravelry and then knit them up, without you there is no point in me doing this, thank you.

To all the pattern testers, who help me make sure that my knitting patterns make sense, thank you and thank you again, you really are awesome.

To all the bloggers who read my ramblings every week, thank you.

To the independent yarn spinners and dyers whose yarn I buy and then add to my stash for just the perfect project, thank you.

To Knit Now magazine who published my snake pattern this year, thank you.

To Knit Picks (especially Stacey), who continue to support my work and help me choose which of their lovely yarns to use, thank you.

To the Living Planet Aquarium, the Unravel Knitting Festival and Neue Monarchie, for making my work larger than life on your posters and banners and calendar, thank you.

To Etsy, for always changing the rules and keeping me on my toes, thank you.

To Ravelry, for getting all those knitters together, thank you.

And last, but by no means least, to my husband for taking my tiny business seriously and to my little boy for being the best QA a toy maker could ever ask for, thank you.

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