2019 Maleny Knitfest Post-Op

This time last week I was madly packing for the Maleny Knitest; fretting about not forgetting anything &, hoping upon hope, that the wet & windy weather would clear & be kind for the weekend ahead.

Fortunately, I didn’t forget a thing. Sadly, the rain persisted for most of the 2 days. However, this didn’t deter the thousands of visitors that came through the doors. So, a big Thank You to everyone, from near & far, who braved the elements;  & to everyone who came & said hello. It was lovely catching with old friends & meeting so many new ladies & gents.

Maleny Knitfest is getting bigger each year confirming that all the hard work the organisers & volunteers put in is worth their ongoing effort.

There were lots of new trade stalls with tempting yarns & fibres & I must admit I couldn’t resist bringing home bundles of lovely yarns & fibres to play with.

Another big Thank You to all the ladies who attended my 6 flowers workshop. I trust you all enjoyed yourselves & that I inspired & increased your crochet repertoire somewhat.

The last Thank You must go to the lovely Robyn Bailey, my trusty trade stall off-sider, I say it, again & again; I couldn’t have done it without you… You’re a Gem!!!

Congratulations to Deb Niotaris & Jill Henderson, the raffle winners, of the 2 Crochet books I donated I hope the books give each of you many hours of happy crochet time.

The competitions had great support this year & were fabulous. The theme ‘Australiana’ View the Tree entries here  & the winners of the Best Beanie, Tea Cosy, Scarf & socks here  & you can checkout more Knitfest action on facebook here

Finally, the following are my Knitfest competition entries.

So, that’s about it for Knitfest 2019. Hope to see you all next year, cheers Renate

 

Alice Springs Beanie Festival 2019

I’m so very late with this post, but better late than never, or so I’m told… Many of you have asked me about my Alice Springs Beanie festival 2019 entries – did I even enter?

To explain… The past couple of months have been super busy with getting my online shop up & running which has taken more time than anticipated. All my for sale crochet & freeform crochet items have been transferred to rensfibreart.com  My Etsy shop will only be carry patterns now. I feel this is the right move. What with Etsy now aggressively pushing free shipping, something I’m not able to do; the integration of PayPal into Etsy direct payments; not to mention a whole string of other changes that adversely affect many sellers. Please take a moment to checkout my new shop & let me know what you think… I’m open to all feedback, so don’t be shy.

Now… getting back to Alice Springs Beanie festival entries, yes I did enter: one Beanie & one Tea cosy & here is a link to all the 2019 winners

The Theme this year was ‘Head full of Tunes’

So, there you go… I’m still re-organising from last week’s Maleny Knitfest & will post about that soon as well…

Maleny Knitfest Time Again July 2019

Hi everyone…The Maleny Knitfest 2019 is almost here; 2 fabulous days of fibre Fun for everyone. Sat, 6th July & Sun, 7th July.

The theme this year is Australiana. As in previous years, Knitfest is shaping up to be a fabulous weekend of gorgeous fibre fun, with workshops, exhibits, trade stalls, competitions & much more… so there’ll be something for everyone.

View the Program Guide here

Check out & book your worksop here, I’m sure you’ll find one to interest you; workshops are filling fast so, to avoid disappointment, don’t leave it too long. If you’d like to know more about this year’s presenters, you can see them here.

For those who enjoy a little challenge, why not give the competitions a go: individuals, groups & businesses can all enter… check out the categories here. It’s only $5 per entry & you can enter as many times as you like… This year there’s even a socks category… Yes, socks…

I will have a trade stall again this year, selling my freeform pieces, my books & patterns & presenting the following  workshop:

Title: Crochet Flowers with a Difference. Sunday 7th July 2019, morning session (10am to 12 noon)

About the Workshop: An introduction to crochet flowers worked a little differently. Fun & practical motifs to enhance & decorate your projects: beanies, hats, scarves, thongs & shoes, headbands : turn them into brooches, garlands & lanyards: or anything your imagination can conjure up. The worksop includes 6 patterns, each a little different from the other. Patterns are in both written & graph (chart) form. You can make as many flowers as time allows.

Requirements:

  • it’s essential that participants have good basic crochet skills
  • bring along your own collection of hooks & a large-eyed darning needle
  • I will supply 6 patterns to choose from
  • I will supply some basic, plain coloured 8ply yarn, however, please feel free to bring along your own favourite colours & yarn

For more information go to the Maleny Knitfest website & you can like Maleny Knitfest on Facebook 

So looking forward to a great weekend. Take some time out for some fibre indulgence… hope to see you there, cheers, Renate

My new website & Shop…

Hello everyone, it’s been quite a while since I’ve been truly active here at rensfibreart… so what have I been up to, you ask? Well, over the past few months, my mojo has been rather sluggish. It happens to us all at sometime & getting it back can be tough. Letting things coast along as they are is easy. However, stepping out of your comfort zone can be daunting & requires a degree of bravery.

First things first: I’ve had this wordpress website for over 10 years & it’s always served me well but the theme has become old, unsupported & not mobile friendly. It definitely needed a change. This had to be my 1st challenge so I took the plunge. There was a bit of a muck around getting photos back in line on all the information pages for better reading & to keep the page attractive. All in all, not too difficult, just time consuming; hopefully I’ve succeeded.

Secondly: My Etsy shop; again, it’s been open since 2009 &, I have to say, Etsy has been good to me. It’s given me lots of exposure & the fabulous opportunity to sell my creations to a worldwide audience. I’ve made some wonderful friendships & loyal customers who have given me the confidence to keep going. However, Etsy has become so big that small handmade sellers like myself are getting lost in the crowd. My sales are still OK but nowhere near what they used to be. Of course there are many of reasons for this: the slow economy, saturated markets, more competition,  perhaps handmade is losing its appeal. Whatever the reason, a rethink was definitely on the cards.

So my next step: was to upgrade my site to business & open my own WooCommerce shop. This was the biggest gamble of all. A huge learning curve that I’m sure will be ongoing for some time. The support team here at wordpress have been fabulous & an enormous help with my bumbling efforts.

The outcome: I now have a mobile friendly website with a ecommerce shop. I will keep my Etsy shop open for the time being selling all my crochet patterns &, as items expire, I’ll transfer them into my rensfibreart shop. The biggest obstacle & my main concern is getting traffic. That’s something I’m going to have to work hard at & learn more about as I go.

The whole experience has certainly taxed my brain, energy &, at times, my patience, but at the same time it’s given me new drive.

Thank you to everyone who has supported me over the years, I hope this will be a fresh, new beginning. I’d love to hear your thoughts & comments & welcome any suggestions.

Season’s Greeting from the Land of Down Under…

Hi everyone, as another year nears its end, & I reflect back, I realise the many goals I had set for myself have gone by-the-way… One being updating my blog with new helpful crochet information & another, completing new crochet patterns…All are in the pipeline, just waiting for me to get on with it…

2018 will be remembered by me as the year of technical malfunctions… from personal household stuff to Government introduced NBN… Everything is now purring away as it should & I’m hopeful it will stay that way for a long time to come so I can get back to the things I enjoy: creating, inspiring, learning & not to mention, my over-grown, neglected garden.

Firstly, I’d like to thank all the lovely ladies who have participated in Crochet Classes this year; your support & friendship has been wonderful & most appreciated… I’d also like to send a special mention & Congratulations to the new beginners who have been coming along to class… it’s very gratifying for me to see you gaining confidence as your skills grow… I look forward to another year with you all.

I’d also like to thank everyone who has contacted me throughout the year. I really value your lovely compliments & feedback &, the requests for advise with those tricky stitches that we come across from time to time, I hope I’ve been helpful…

Another gracious, ‘Thank You’ must go to all my Etsy, Ravelry, Craftsy & Zibbet customers, most of which are international &, I really appreciate your trust & taking the time to leave great feedback.

2018 ~ Alice Springs Beanie Festival comp was fun. I received a ‘Special Mention’ for my ‘Blue Planet T-Cosy,’ which the judges mistook as a beanie, Whaaa! Ha! What a hoot! Goes to show how freeform can confuse the best of us.

~ Maleny Knitfest seems to be growing bigger each year, much to the delight of the organisers. Thanks again to Robyn Bailey who looked after my trade stall & helped customers after while I workshopped. Competition entries were very low this year, nevertheless, the standard was high. I won the Best Scarf award & 2nd prize for Best Beanie. 

~ The Landsborough Tea Cosy/Beanie Challenge’ had a large increase in entries & I was lucky to win the Best Tea Cosy…

~ &, for the computer nerds, I’m now on Instagram… bit of self promotion doesn’t hurt… or, so I’m told.

Here’s hoping 2019 brings new inspirations & more interesting crochet challenges. I’d like to wish you all a Merry Christmas & all the very best for the New Year ahead… cheers, Renate