Today was the day of my second big shop update on Etsy. Yay!! Butterflies!! Will people like what I put up? Will I sell anything? But let’s go back in time a minute so you can better understand what has led up to today.
I take you back to February 2016. This is the month I officially became a knitter. Believe it or not I’ve actually had knitting in my life for the last 5 years. My dearest friend started knitting and then one day came to me and said she was going to dye yarn for a living. I seriously thought she was INSANE!! The first thoughts that came to my mind “can you actually make money doing that” and “is dying yarn a thing?” Years later I now know dying yarn is a huge BIG thing. And yes she does actually make money. Soon after that day Oh!Loops was born and for years my dear friend tried to get me to start knitting. She even showed me how several times, but to be honest I just didn’t get it. I loved her yarn and wanted to buy it, but I didn’t see the point of making something when I could buy it for less in the store and hey the buying part took way less time than it would to work on something myself. And this is just how it was until February 2016. Me admiring her yarn and thinking I should buy it and put it on a shelf and look at it because it was so so pretty and her trying to convince me I should actually learn how to use it. The turning point was when my oldest daughter comes to me and tells me that she feels like I pay more attention to her little sister than I do her.
Every Mom’s Nightmare!!!
We all have the ideas that we will be equal with our kids and everything will be fair and we will give all our time equally between our children. In my case this was especially true since I am the oldest of four and I saw my parents give each of us more attention at different times and of course vowed I would never do the same thing. HAHA As most of us parents know and as I learned once I had two beautiful children, this is completely impossible.
In my case my oldest who is 11 is very independent and is amazing at being responsible for herself. It’s not that she doesn’t require attention it’s that she doesn’t demand it. My youngest who is 7 is a completely different story. She DEMANDS the attention. After hearing what my oldest was telling me I realized exactly how much I wasn’t giving her and how that was affecting her and I decided I was going to be active in doing something to change this. The one big thing to know about me is when I decide I need to make a change I jump in with both feet, head first, lean in and make it happen without any looking back. You’ll want to remember this for later.
With that came the search for something we could do together that wouldn’t necessarily leave my youngest out, but would be something she may not be interested in doing right away. My oldest is an amazing artist and loves everything to do with art so I instantly went to the Spokane Art school to see if maybe there was a class we could take together. This way I could earn double mommy points. One for spending time with just her and two for doing something she totally loves. This is where the road to knitting started. Unfortunately, at that particular time they only had two classes that she could participate in at her age. One was pottery and the other was beginning knitting. The pottery class was double the cost of the knitting class plus extra cost for materials, so I was leaning more towards knitting, but I decided I would leave the choice up to her. She chose knitting.
Why take a class when my best friend is an avid knitter you ask?
I wonder that myself sometimes, but the class was amazing and actually helped me stick with it until I completed something. I already knew the basics from being shown before, but it allowed me to revisit the basics and pick everything up really fast plus my daughter found that she loved it too. The best part was having to have so much progress done by each class. It was a win win!!
This is where my obsession took over. I started knitting all of the time. Some with my oldest and some just on my own. I started knitting at work, in the car, every time I had some downtime. I was loving it. I had found that the feeling of accomplishment that I felt when I finished a project just couldn’t be beat by anything else. And well telling an admiring stranger that you made it yourself was just icing on the cake.
Now we are going to jump back in our time machine and head on over to July 2016. Up until this point I was just knitting. I’d completed a couple of projects and purchased yarn and also stumbled into the world of buying project bags for each one of my projects. That was almost as addicting as purchasing the yarn. My only frustration was I was having a hard time finding exactly what I wanted. That’s when my husband said I should make my own bags.
Make my own bags!!
I don’t even know how to sew!! The idea seemed a little crazy to me. I really didn’t consider myself a crafty person (still don’t at times). I work in the engineering world with math and sciency stuff. How can I possibly be creative and sew and make something by hand? With his insistence that I needed to find a way to have my bags and still allow my family to eat, I looked up a bag pattern and decided it didn’t look too hard. I didn’t love the pattern and being a mechanical designer for my career I decided to design me own pattern and then purchased a sewing machine.
Let’s just say my first bag was a little wonky, but my daughter loved it and still uses it for her knitting. My next bag was better and my third even better.
This is when my wonderful friend and husband both made the comment that I should sell my bags. She absolutely loved the combos I was putting together and really pushed me to give it a shot. Or maybe she just merely suggested it and I ran with it.
This is where that jumping in with both feet head first leaning in thing comes to play again.
I literally came back from camping over the 4th of July (probably 3 or 4 days after the idea was suggested) and opened my Etsy shop and bought fabric and made bags. This was the birth of Bana&Bean. Bana stands for my youngest daughter Savannah; whose nickname is banana. Bean stands for my oldest daughter Isabella and who I’ve always called Bella Bean. Together they are my flashlight that allows me to light my way and gives me the inspiration to shoot for the stars and dream big just like we all did as kids. That pretty much brings us to today and my second shop update going live this morning. Yay!! Butterflies!! Will people like what I put up? Will I sell anything?
Only time will tell and I hope you will continue down this journey with me.
I’ve always felt that I was missing creativity in my day-to-day. HVAC and Plumbing isn’t super creative although I do love my career. That is something else to know. I wear many hats in my life. The short list is, full-time mechanical designer (career), wife, mother, soccer mom, sister, daughter, knitter, and now business owner. There are many times throughout every day that I completely feel there is not enough hours in the day and I’m always juggling many things and every once in a while I drop a ball. My hope is that this blog will take you on a journey with me through all of these different hats I wear and you will find something that you can relate to, make you not feel so alone, and hopefully at times will brighten your day and put a smile on your face.
Until next time Where is my flashlight?