Weekend Update: WIP’s and FO’s

WIP’s & FO’s (works in progress & finished objects) I have baskets upon baskets full of projects and finished items! 2018 was the year I told myself I was gonna get “serious” about knitting, and so far, I have proven myself right! (Too right almost) If you follow me on instagram, some of these projects may look familiar to you and might be a little repetitive, but I’ll try to go into more detail here than I do on there! If you want more frequent updates of all my projects, then you should just go follow me on instagram 😉


1.  Comfort Fade Cardi by Andrea Mowry

Materials: 3 colorways, hand dyed by me, and one by Primrose Yarn Co, in the colorway “salem”  (DK weight) Needles by Knitter’s Pride sizes US 6 & US 5.

Progress: ~60%

This is a project that, if you do follow me on IG, then you have definitely seen the progress on this baby! This is my first adult sized sweater project. So naturally, I am obsessed with it. I am participating in the KAL that Andrea Mowry is hosting for it on Ravelry. I believe that the KAL ends on March 31, 2018, BUT I hope to be done with this piece later this month for a trip to Sedona that my fiance and I have planned! I rarely get to go on weekend trips anymore, so I would really, really love to have this finished by then! I have finished the body of the sweater and just have the sleeves and collar to finish. I am going to do a more in depth review of my experience with this cardigan once it is all complete, but I can tell you now, this has been awesome to work up and I’m excited to try out some other patterns by Andrea!



2.  Favorite Sock pattern by Voolenvine

Materials: Patons, Kroy Socks FX in the color Cameo. Needles bu Chiaogoo Red Lace 40″ Circulars US 1.5.

Progress: ~25%

YAY! My first socks! This has been a goal of mine FOR. SO. LONG! Last year, I really got into watching podcasts by Voolenvine on youtube and I really wanted to join in on her “box o sox KAL” Where you basically knit one pair of socks each month for a year. At the end of the year you have a kickass box of socks to wear for the next year! I was so jealous of seeing all the amazing patterns by other sock knitters and admiring them, thinking of them as “real knitters” and I thought, “I wanna be a real knitter too!” So now I’m trying! This is a free “vanilla” (basic) sock pattern by Kristin of Voolenvine on ravelry and so far so good! I am currently working on the heel flap, then I’ll attempt to “turn the heel” and work the gusset! These are terms that I have NEVER in 13 years of knitting, ever even began to attempt! Stay tuned because I see many, many socks in my future!

Side note: I’ve always been a little bummed that there wasn’t really anything I could knit for my fiance, since he never wears scarves or hats and hes not really a sweater guy either. BUT, when I told him I wanted to knit socks, he finally got excited about that and has already made some requests! 🙂 Leave me a comment if making stuff for your S/O makes you happier than anything else!


3. Zarya Shawl by Ambah Obrien

Materials: Hand dyed yarn by Prem Knits, in the colorway “ocean kiss” and hand dyed by me, unnamed. Fingering weight. Needles by Clover, US 5.

Progress: ~50% (FINALLY)

Ok, this piece has taken me forever, just to get half way done! To no fault to the designer at all, but this piece is very slow moving for me because of how detailed it is. It has a similar pattern repeat throughout the shawl, but for some reason, I can’t memorize the repeat enough to where I don’t have to look down at the pattern every couple of rows and that can make for a very long project. I love how its turning out and I cant wait for it to be blocked and wrapped around my neck, but I am definitely not counting on that being anytime soon. Good things come to those who wait, so this ought to be the best shawl around! lol One day, babes. One day.



As soon as I figured out that I COULD hand dye yarns, I have become obsessed with it. In high school, I painted canvas, in college, I painted hair, now, I paint yarn! I think yarn dyeing has been one of the scariest projects I’ve ever worked on, mostly out of fear of not being good enough. When I knit or crochet something, I know that either my stitches and pattern are right, or they’re not. But, with dyeing, it is all up to personal opinion. Yes, there is a right way to do it, but there are also SO many ways for you to dye and self doubt is much higher. However, after several months of doubting if anyone would like it, I’ve made the decisions to start selling some of my hand dyed skeins. I have so much fun playing with dyeing and I want to share that with like minded people! Look for them coming to my shop sometime either late February or in March, maybe April- I’m not making any promises due to the fact that I run 2 businesses and generally put too much on my plate! (But it’ll be sometime soon-ish!)


5. Celtic Heart Macrame

These little hearts, I am actually pretty excited about! I had been trying to think for a couple weeks about how to macrame some heart key chains and was coming up with nada. Every design I tried, just kinda looked like a jumbled mess. Then, while browsing Pinterest, like you do at 2 am, I saw a celtic heart pendant necklace and thought it was purrfect 🙂 These lil guys are an inch wide and just about 5 inches tall and perfect as a key chain, or a purse tassel! Just in time for V-day but good all year round, I think! Having an idea come to fruition really is just so satisfying and in the end, totally worth it!


That’s all for today my yarn babes! I’m hoping to cast on a few new projects this week so next time I have some new yummy projects for you! IF you check out my highlights on my instagram account, you’ll be able to see my “2018 make nine” list and let me tell you, I am SO excited about a couple of them, so let me know if you have any in common with me!

Let’s be friends:

Instagram: @girlirae






How To Price Your Handmade Items

how to guide on pricing handmade items
The title says it all! How to (accurately) price your handmade items. This has been a really hot topic within the maker community, mainly (that I’ve seen) on instagram. It’s a topic that has been requested by some readers in the past and I thought now would be a perfect time to chime in with my opinion on the matter. While I am at it, please keep in my that these are MY OPINONS, they are not end all facts and they are certainly not laws. At the end of the day, you can price your items however you feel appropriate, but before you do so, you may want to keep some of these questions in mind!

1. Am I aware of my worth?

So, what do I mean by this? Well, it is widely understood that “handmade” to many people, means cheap. When, in fact, that couldn’t be farther from the truth! There is a big difference between giving a discount to close friends or family and just undervaluing yourself to the public. I have spent nearly my entire adult income on pricing my own time. I have almost always been self employed, so trust me when I say, it is hard to confidently price your time and skill at first. You may see it as “asking” for money, but you shouldn’t! You are delivering a quality product that took, time, years of skill and knowledge, materials and lots of care and love. Let’s say, for instance,  that you sell handmade scarves and beanies. This may seem like a simple and easy product for you to make now, but think about how daunting it was when you very first started! It is only easier for you now because of all the time, attention and practice you have put forth to be better and better and provide that excellent quality beanie. There may be millions of people out there that do exactly what you do, but there are also millions that don’t, and that is why your skill is special and unique to you. You should be aware that you are making an awesome product that many people covet!

macrame wall hanging detail close up

This is a detailed photo of a wall hanging I sold for over $200! I knew that all the detail and care that went into this item was well WORTH the price tag, and so did my customer!


2. Am I making a profit?

This one should be obvious! Are you making a profit? IF you are actually selling an item that you poured so much hard work into, I would assume that you would at least want to be compensated? Let’s break it down. At the simplest level of pricing you should be including,

1. How much you spent on the materials.

2. How much you’d like to be paid hourly.

3. How much time you spent creating the product.

4. What percentage of markup you want to put on the product.

I’ve heard from makers far too often, “Well, I made back may materials cost, so at least I didn’t lose money.” If you have found yourself saying this at some point in time, I’m sorry, but you did in fact lose money. There is so much that goes into making and selling an item other than just how much you spent on materials. If you sell online, you need to think about how much your website costs you, what processing fees are taken out by your site host. If you’re selling at a market, you most likely have a booth rental fee and setup and prep that goes into it. If you’re real lucky and can somehow sell for free (no overhead charges) then you should still be taking into account that you’re basically “working for free” if you just make back the money you spent on materials. It would be the equivalent to showing up to work, making an item, and going home, unpaid. You didn’t lose any money from it, but you also didn’t make any, so you’re right back where you started. You have to look at it as a business, not a hobby, and once you start taking your business seriously, others will too!

A great, easy and FREE app that I’ve found in the apple app store is the Craft Pricing Calculator App. It includes all 4 elements I mentioned before and gives you a fair pricing for your item. It has the retail profit markup preloaded at 40% since that is standard with most retail markup items. But you can change it to be more or less depending on your preference. (Please don’t make it less though, remember what I said about valuing yourself!)

Here I’ve included a sample pricing (screenshot from the app!) I’ve marked the material cost at $10. Next, is the number of items made from that material, 1. Then, you calculate how much time you spent on it. For the example, I put 2.5 hours, (some may be more or less time, this was just for the example.) Then, the hourly wage. Usually, I price this a little higher, but the for the example, I put at least minimum wage, since that is the very least you should be paid! And finally, the 40% markup. It displays numbers for the wholesale cost, then the retail price, which is the price you should be concerned with! It displayed a total price of $49. If you are thinking that $49 is too much to price a hat or scarf at, then you should really be adjusting the way you view handmade items. This item was not made in a factory by a machine or a robot, it was made with my own two hands and the knowledge I have to create that item! $49 is a fair price for quality and care. AND, the best news is, there are people out there who agree and will absolutely pay that amount for quality products! Now, I’m not saying that all my hats have been priced this much, this is just an example, but it is how you should be valuing your skill, time and expense that was used to create your unique products!


3. Are you selling for business or hobby?

The third and final question you should really ask yourself is, why are you selling your product? Is is because you happen to make lots of items from your hobby and want to share it with the public, or are you trying to create a brand and business? If is for the first reason, then you may want to consider gifting your items or “selling for donation”, where you have it known that you create the items and would just like to be compensated for the material costs. Or you can donate your items to charities, shelters or hospitals. There are plenty of places that will gladly take your extra items off your hands and you’d be helping people in the process! If you’re selling to create an income and a business, then you need to have confidence in yourself and your product to know that you are worth it! Always keep in mind the 4 key elements I stated above and mostly have fun! When you love what you do, your work becomes fun and don’t let your profit take away from your joy of creating. Being a maker is a wonderful thing and an incredibly important outlet for us creatives who have the need to make with our hands.


I would LOVE to hear your thoughts on this topic. Did you find this post interesting or informative? Let me know in the comments! On another note, as I stated earlier in the post, this is a really hot topic within the maker community. Some makers on instagram that consistently have great info on the topic are @knitatude and @tlyarncrafts just name a couple.


Connect with me! I love making news friends:

Instagram: @girlirae