Life Kind of Happened

This little space of mine has been sadly neglected. Fall/Winter 2016-2017 became my busiest year yet as a maker.
From selling in two shops, online orders and finding out we were expecting a little one...the blog took a backseat.



I'm bound and determined to get back in the groove as I have so many new things to share with you.
The turn around time in the shop will change for a short time as mid-July is when we are expecting Miss Marlee to make her appearance, I will share more on this soon.
The shop will be gradually filled with a few new items and several may go away.

You can find several RTS items in the shop or head into DNA Galleries in the Plaza District to get your Oikos Handmade fix.

Stay tuned for some fun items...or to get some sneak peeks head on over and follow me on Instagram or Facebook.

Finely and Bub Fall Line

When you find another small shop to work with on a photo shoot, you say YES!!
I always am looking for ways to have my little/young girls items photographed so when Natalie (with Finley and Bub) was looking for a few items for a photo shoot I jumped at the opportunity that maybe my items might work with her esthetic.
(We have one son and I am an Aunt to 4 boys...no girls in sight thus far.)
Sure enough, her fall line fit right right in line with my style.
Finley and Bub with Oikos Handmade mini Crossboyd Fringe
How sweet is this little dress paired with the mini cross-body fringe purse with a fun pom pom?  I love everything from the color of the dress to the simple vintage embellishment around the neck.
I wanted to add a little whimsical feel to the purse so there are tiny little bells in the pom pom. They aren't loud, so they won't disrupt things but it is kind of as if you're calling your fairy friends to come out and play. When Finley said she loved the Jingle Bell Purse, I knew she had to keep it. Now I want a Jingle Bell purse too. ;)

Granny Squares have always been a favorite of mine!
I have loved making a beautiful piece you would find in your Grandma's home and make it into a beautiful fun modern accessory.
When Natalie sent a picture of the colors and style she was doing for her fall line, I knew a Granny Square Cowl would make a beautiful accessory to her amazing creations.
Finley and Bub Granny Square

The Rust Hi-Lo Hem Split Dress, is just so beautiful! I love everything from the color to the fit and the super cute knit ringer pullover sweater.
The Granny Square cowl fit perfectly with this dress. It brought it some fun fall colors that bring across the vintage feel that Natalie brought to her entire fall line-up.
From the colors, textures and styles, Natalie has you covered.
I keep telling her I need the Horse pants in my size and the dress from the first picture.

Oikos Handmade Purse/Cowl
Thank you Natalie for letting me be part of your fall line launch. I'm excited to see what else you have in-store!
Enjoy!!

Pattern Designing…Is it for me?

My favorite time of day to crochet is late at night.
I find comfort in knowing my husband and son are in the house and all worries seem to flee my mind for a while.
As soon as I sit down to binge watch my favorite show with my yarn and hook in hand, the creativity seems to flow.
I have come up with several patterns that I have written. They sit in a book in the craft room and I fall back on them if the occasional step seems to flee my mind.
After designing the Graph Beanie Pattern, I had several people reach out to me about selling the pattern. It was something I wanted to do but honestly didn't know where to start. I finally got the nerve up to sell the pattern and sold a few here and there. After a few weeks  Liz, over at Playin' Hooky Designs, reached out and helped me with the pattern. We talked and worked together to create an amazing pattern.
I had admired Liz and her work for a while, so to be able to co-author a pattern with her was such an honor. The Graph Beanie has been a great piece to build on and has been a huge hit. Oikos Handmade Graph Beanie
It wasn't until I worked with Liz that the pattern took off. Speed up to a while later and I designed several other items and released a few as patterns. They have NOT been met with the same excitement as the Graph Beanie has.
Braided Infinity Scarf pattern

Last year I released the Braided Infinity Scarf as a finished piece into the shop. Customers loved it and it became a best seller for me last fall/winter. After several request I decided to release the pattern this past week. 
It is one of the pieces I am most proud of and to see it not do as well has left me with some disappointment.
I know if I were to find a person to help and co-author with me it would probably do better, most of my patterns honestly would because something about this designing stuff...its who you know. It is VERY cliquey and I've found it hard to break through.
I received a message yesterday that made me doubt myself and the designing world.
A designer reached out to me to let me know she would be releasing a pattern that was similar to mine. I questioned her a bit and she came back with "It does happen. More frequently than you'd think".
I was hurt, frustrated that such a large designer would make it seem like it wasn't big deal. I'm sure there are little differences here and there but she will receive more exposure because of her shop size.
I've purchased several of her patterns, supported her work only to be met with "It happens".
(Apparently this isn't uncommon for her upon further investigation.)
There were other ways in which it could have been approached, I was so taken back that I didn't know what to say...so after questioning her I just let it go. I'm the small hook in the crochet world...and I'm okay with that.
I just wanted a little respect, a little support.

And I found it!
Not in the way that I may have wanted at first but I found the support I needed.
My TRIBE, my tribe always pulls thru with love, encouragement and support.
I had several crochet friends share my pattern and they have been the ladies that have been my cheerleaders on this journey.
Self confidence can be hard for me in such a large handmade community.
Do I measure up to (fill in the blank)?
I do this little business so I can stay home with our son. So when the school calls and he needs a breathing treatment I can go do that.
I do this for all the prescriptions we have to buy each month.
I love creating, I love the way making something with my hands makes me feel and the pride I have in what comes from a piece of wood and skein of yarn.

I let it go...I let the situation go and I will support the designers that support the small ones.
I will create even if things don't sell like I think they should.
I will continue to be Kimberly the face, hands and heart behind Oikos Handmade.
This shop started because of our little boy...and I will continue to run my little shop with heart and integrity, just the way it started.

Thank you for your love and support,
I couldn't do this little dream without you.

Going, Going…Gone!!

Over the summer I thought about what I wanted my shop to be like this fall/winter.
What items do I love to make and what items could take a back seat for a while.
After much thought I sat and decided the following items would leave the shop and some may not come back, so grab them while you can.
I want to have a shop filled with items that I love to make, items that you love too.

So first up are loveys, they will be back in the spring but need to take a back seat during busy season. I currently am in 2 local stores and hoping to extend that to one or two more. With that being said these little loves are just a little to much sometimes.

Loveys by Oikos Handmade
These loveys are great for the little ones in your life. They make great Christmas gifts, baby shower gifts or a simple just because gift.

The animal hoods will also be leaving the shop. These had a fun little run too and come in a range of sizes. The Marian hood will still remain in the shop if you would like a plain hood.
Crochet Animal Hoods

Aren't they cute?!?

Next up are the Gracycee Kate booties.
Graycee Kate Booties

Last but not least are the following items.

Oikos Handmade Products

The Lighting Bolt Hat, Leopard Print Hat, Mini Tab Slouch Hat and the Cable Scarf are a few of my first items that were brought into the shop. I believe they have run a bit of their course, at least for now.
You can find the patterns to the Lighting Bolt Hat and Leopard Print hats in the shop, look under crochet patterns.

And last but not least is one of my favorite pieces. The oversize crochet shrug, this piece is great for cuddling up in the cool/cold weather months and great for layering.
Oversize Crochet Shrug
Go grab these items in the shop before the leave on September 1.

Thank you for making these items such a success these past few years.
I'm excited to bring a few new items this fall/winter to the shop.
Enjoy and Happy Shopping.

New Pattern Release: The Braided Infinity Scarf

Well hello there!
Yes, I am still around and hoping with school starting that I can give this creative space the attention it deserves.
Fun and exciting things are coming to Oikos Handmade and it all begins with a new pattern release.
Many of you asked for it last year but business and life got in the way of writing it down. With Cohen starting school I finally sat down to the computer and finished it up.

Braided Infinity Scarf Close Up
The Braided Infinity Scarf is a favorite piece of mine, so warm and cozy.
It is made using Tunisian crochet making the fabric nice and thick. Don't be scared of Tunisian crochet, it is so much fun and produces the most beautiful fabric.

My friend Liz, with Playin' Hooky Designs, just released some tutorials on her blog, check them out.

This scarf is easy to adjust the length making it great for all ages.
You can make it using one color, color block your scarf or use up those super bulky scraps you have stashed away for a rainy day.

Golden Braided Infinity Scarf
You can find this pattern over on Ravelry or over in my BigCartel Shop.

From now until September 1, you can receive $1.00 off your pattern purchase, no coupon needed.
Please share your finished project with me on Ravelry, FB or tag me on Instagram.

Are you interested in ordering this scarf but don't crochet? Don't fret, I've got you covered. Until September 1, you can receive $10.00 off your purchase, for the Braided Infinity Scarf Only. Just enter coupon code: Braided10 at checkout to receive your discount. 

Enjoy and Happy Stitching my friends!

2016 The Year of Shopping Small/Handmade – February

2016 The Year of Shopping Small/Handmade – February

This year I have decided each month I will purchase from another small/handmade business to show them support and to share their amazing business with you.

I found Jennifer via her personal Instagram a while back…probably over a year or two ago. I loved her style and can honestly say, I’m not sure how I found her account but I was glad I did.
A few months ago I found the Instagram account Shout Happy thru Keri Giordano and loved the beautiful woven necklaces. After following for a month or so I realized that Jennifer was the talented lady behind these beautiful pieces.
Once I found this out I knew what I wanted my February purchase to be. I have followed this talented lady for a while and I wanted to support her work.
Shout Happy Woven Necklaces
Aren’t they a beautiful statement piece? Here is a little about Jennifer and her shop, Shout Happy.

an accidental beginning 30 years in the making

A little over 7 years ago, I had another small business, creating knitted and hand stitched items, did craft shows, met some lifelong friends and then, allowed life to get in the way for a while. Focused on my design career, my marriage and my family, all the while knowing in my heart I had not let this dream go. 

In 2012, I got the chance to start this crazy journey, though it came in a drastic, life changing way… like so many of us these days, I was laid off from my job after a particularly challenging year. Fast forward through another wild year of the highest highs and lowest lows. We began to get back on our feet, I came up with the name in 2013, experimented with a few products for the shop but nothing seemed quite right. Then, I took up weaving in January of last year. Immediately, it blended my love of needlecrafts, working with my hands and even painting. It was the creative outlet I had been looking for and proceeded to fall head over heels in love with. It began with weavings for myself or as gifts for friends and family. Somewhere around last Summer, all the pieces came together. With the help of supportive friends and family, especially my incredibly encouraging husband, Shout Happy opened and it’s been a slow and steady pace ever since. I’ve discovered a true passion in my life and that is irreplaceable. 

Most of my inspiration comes from daily life. We took a trip to the mountains last Fall and that influenced a whole series of weavings once we returned home. I have always loved the way colors work together, so a lot of my pieces begin that way… a new favorite color combination and the spark of an idea.

My parents were both creative and worked with their hands. They are my larger inspiration, the original spark. Some of my favorite items in our home were made by one or both of them. Unfortunately, my dad passed away at a really young age. That proved to shape most of my life, putting things in perspective early on and changing the way I see people, life, connections. My mom and grandma raised — and fiercely loved — my brother and me, which showed us over and over again what being strong really was. It also made anything my dad created, touched or loved that much more invaluable. To know that I might be leaving a small mark out in the world, leaving something behind for my daughter and becoming a part of history, if only my family’s history, is quite an overwhelming feeling of gratitude and smallness.

Connections and storytelling are the best parts of running this business. My story — and all those of handcrafters who came before me — is woven into each piece. From there, someone gets to place their story and their life into it. There’s not much better or more special than that.”

I loved her last paragraph and it gives me even more reason to shop and support this amazing shop owner.
Shout Happy Woven NecklaceI loved how these necklaces paired great with my BASK kimono (January’s shop small purchase).
I purchased the grey and blue with royal blue fringe also because I felt like it was great to show my Thunder pride. 😉

Go visit Jennifer’s shop, follow her on IG and FB and support this amazing wife, momma, small business owner.

Enjoy!


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