Friday, November 17, 2006

the knitting zone the interview

How long have you been dyeing yarn/beading?
I'm a retail store owner, occasional dyer, lace and bead knitting fanatic, spinner and knitting needle distributor. I taught myself to knit at age 10 and decided then I wanted to own a yarn store. I thought it would never happen. I'm a lucky person to be able to live my dream.

What motivates you?
The creative process. Ripping things out doesn't deter me.

What was your favourite project you have ever made?
It would have to be my first project, knit at age 10 (well, ok age 11 too). It was a cables and lace afghan. My mom never thought I'd learn to knit on my own. I gave her the completed afghan and she kept and used it until she passed away, many, many years later.

Have you ever been a participant in a Secret Pal swap?
No! I've always been interested but I thought it would be "cheating" for me to participate.

Any advice for the fiber/beading artists?
Enjoy the process...it isn't always about finishing the design as much as it is about learning and creating.

Are there any designers, fiber artists or any other artist you consider role models?
I love Lucy Neatby. she's seems fearless about doing her own thing. Anyone who could name a pattern "Cables After Whiskey" is ok with me!

how they got started, the background of their business?
In 2000 I left my demanding job at an Aerospace company with the intent of taking the month of December off and getting myself reemployed after the New Year. During my break I decided that I needed some way to keep track of my gigantic knitting stash. Being a database person I began developing the product now known as NeedleTrax. Next came The Sole Solution and The Knitter's Desktop Companion and I started retailing/wholesaling my software. This opened the door to adding interesting knitting items and the next I knew I had a 1300 square foot shop and well over 4,000 products! It has been an amazing 6 years and I've loved every minute of it!

do you knit, do your employees knit on the job? (because that is the dream of all knitters)
Unfortunately (ok fortunately) we are so busy that we don't have time to knit at work. We try to ship the same day whenever we can! We always have time to pet yarns and pick out our next project!

Are there any new products you were/are dying to come out?
We have begun importing our own line of quality knitting needles at a more affordable price (HiyaHiya brand). We currently stock bamboo and steel needles but we will soon offer more affordable rosewood and ebony needles. We offer wholesale pricing to retailer stores as well.

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