Monday, October 15, 2012

Tagging strategies for crafty etsians

I thought I'd post today about etsy, because it's my bread and butter, in a yarny sort of way.
I've spent the morning redoing my tags and titles on a lot of etsy items, I'll let you know in a few days if it seems to have been effective.

If you're an etsian, you probably have noticed that they've redone their approach to tags. I never understood how those squishy rules about tags worked, and was afraid I'd tag- gasp- unethically. It seemed that you weren't allowed to use two or three word tags, and certainly had many restrictions on what types of inferences your viewers might make based upon your tag.

But with the new changes, I think it's easier and more sensible. Two and three word tags are allowed: I use "crocheted flower", "crochet flower" easy crochet flower", etc. This legitimately attracts shoppers to your item who might be trying to find...a crocheted flower!

My advice is to make targeted tags like this, even though they sound repetitive. Look at the keywords shoppers actually use to find your items, or items like yours. Make some targeted or specific, if your item is unique, and make some general.

Here's a super post about ways to make your etsy items more visible and successful: http://craftybird.hubpages.com/hub/20-Ways-to-increase-traffic-to-your-Etsy-Shop . A lot of those tips are ones you're probably already using, but like me, you might need a little kick in the pants to remember their importance.

If you'd like to see my original crochet designs on etsy,



click here
and you can also see them on Ravelry , a cool pattern site, and on
Amazon's Kindle Store

Have a super crafty day!


Saturday, October 6, 2012

Piles of Messy Curls, strangely wonderful to make!

My New Curly Vines Muscadine Scarf . This is one I was talking about in this blog a few weeks ago, and the pattern is finished and on etsy at the link above.



I have some people testing it still, but so far so good with this messy pile of curls scarf. I love it!! It looks like seaweed or vines, irregular and ruffly yet not too too feminine. And it's not just a bunch of strands that you have to untangle and deal with, the strands are linked together as you work, so that the end result looks like a piles of chained ruffles, but is actually a netted whole. The best way to wear this messy scarf is to double it and thread the ends through the loop formed, but I'm thinking about making a chunky beaded band to tie it with.

I'm not sure why I'm liking more "messed up" or irregular natural shapes, but they are speaking to me lately. Maybe the aesthetic is 'imperfect, but beautiful" or "damaged, but beautfiul", and I'm liking either. Many times crochet is too perfect, too regular, too uptight. That's why freeform crochet fascinates me, as do irregular designs like this. Got another one on the way!!!

I'm finding that obsession with particular forms or themes in art and design is perhaps not good for mental health, but very good for the creative process. Who knew? (Besides every tormented artist out there) Here's hoping you find your theme!

You can see my original designs at My Etsy Pattern Store - www.susanlinnstudio.etsy.com  OR on Amazon, ready for your Kindle OR on my Ravelry Storefront

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Get a Super Size Hook for Super Fast Scarves!

This is one of my Etsy Store Scarf Patterns , but I'm going to tell you its secret here: use a huge crochet hook!! the battery in my camera is dead, so I can't snap a photo of my big N size hooks, but there they'll be in the crochet section of your craft store, and I'm going to try to persuade you to get your hands on one! (No, I don't sell crochet hooks, ha!)


An N hook is 9 mm in width, almost a centimeter, which is really really chunky. At first, it's quite unwieldy and might tire out your wrist as you work. 

So why use this monster hook? SPEED! The great thing is that for a scarf or shawl, it makes your work go so quickly!! The pattern above only took an hour or so to make, and I'll give away my secret and tell you right here that you'll get a similar effect if you just make a classic shell stitch in that super large hook. A soft slinky yarn helps, too. 

Another benefit of stepping up to that huge hook is that when you super size your hook, you also update the look of that homely crochet stitch, whatever it may be. Not every crochet pattern for a scarf or shawl will work with an N size hook (my patterns which use an N hook are designed to work out well), but you can use your judgment and translate many ordinary stitches for a plain rectangular object into these large lacy interpretations. 

So go big!! It's awesome!

If you would like to see my crochet patterns, you can visit my Etsy Pattern Store or check out my Amazon Kindle Store pattern ebooks. 

Thanks for stopping by!