Danforth East Arts Fair – this weekend!

Okay, so I know the forecast isn’t that great for today, but you can come on out tomorrow to East Lynn Park from 10am-5pm to the Danforth East Arts Fair!

If you want to take a look at all of the artisan features I’ve posted of folks who will be there with me, go to category/fellow-artisan/deaf14-fellow-artisan/.

As for me, I should probably get packing, but I thought I’d give a quick preview of what I’ll have on hand:

A few tree toppers (Santa, a Tardis, and angels):

Hand knit, felted wool hats, including these needle felted adorned ones:

And another viking hat:

A few different tea cosy designs:

As well as the popular dryer balls, catnip balls, and ornaments! Hope to see you there!

Artisan: Lynn’s Lids

I keep doing fellow artisan features, but I just realized that I haven’t actually done one of these posts for myself. So, just in time for my 3 big September sales (Cabbagetown Art & Crafts Sale, Danforth East Arts Fair and Etsy Made in Canada at MaRS), here goes:

Lynn's Lids felted wool dryer balls Lynn's Lids felted wool Toronto iPad sleeve Lynn's Lids needle felted wool Santa ornaments

Artisan Name: Lynn Wyminga

Products:  hand knit, waterproof & windproof felted wool hats, tea cosies, iPad sleeves, sheepy wool dryer balls, natural wool catnip balls, Christmas tree toppers and ornaments, either hand knit then felted wool yarn, wet felted wool roving, or needle felted wool roving.

Price Range: $10-100

How did this all begin? 
A few years ago, I picked up knitting again for the first time in 20 years. I made scarves for my kids’ stuffed animals, then scarves for my kids, husband and brother-in-law, but I didn’t need a scarf (my brother had knit me one!) so I browsed through the patterns at my local yarn shop and came across a pattern for a felted wool hat. I am a hat lover, so I figured if I could keep myself in hats (instead of buying them), I’d be set! So I made a bowler and during the felting process, I was kinda hooked. That transformation is a bit thrilling every time it happens. Anyway, I wore the hat out (and promptly made myself another) and friends kept asking me to make them one, and eventually Lynn’s Lids was born. (I had to take nearly 2 years off for treatment of 2 cancers, but when I was strong again in the fall of 2012 I started in earnest.)

I am inspired by many things, but nature is a big one (take the sheep on the dryer balls!) and necessity is another. The dryer balls idea came from the David Suzuki Foundation newsletter since I needed a smaller ticket item to sell at markets. They are a great gift since they are environmentally friendly (reducing dryer time) but even if the recipient isn’t interested in that aspect, they are just so darn cute (I had a non-English speaker order them on Etsy and they didn’t know they were for the dryer until they received them with my note – they had just bought them as fibre art!). I have made a lot of them, and as of yet I haven’t tired of it. I’m making the right product, I guess.

Other new items come from client requests (tea cosy, cat bed, computer sleeve, various hats), my own needs (iPad sleeve, camera cosy), and sometimes just whimsy (catnip balls, ornaments, Frankenstein hat, cyclops hat, devil hat, dragon hat).

The hats are definitely my favourite. I enjoy making every single one, from the knitting, the thrill of felting, and the blocking. (But not the waiting. Never the waiting.) I especially enjoy creating new designs and patterns, as that keeps things fresh and exciting. Not everything works, but mostly they do (a good example is the baker boy cap, below – which I made up a few years ago but took 3 tries to perfect). It feels great when someone tries one of my lids on and it suits them perfectly. I’ve been wearing my second hat (a bucket hat turned out to be the favourite for me and I gave that first bowler to my mom after a couple of years of wear) for 6 years so I know that they don’t really wear out. Because they are felted to a thick dense fabric, they are very durable, keeping out the wind and rain and I know the wearer will be warm and dry for years.

Needle felting is so much fun that I want everyone to give it a go, so I teach it on a regular basis at my local yarn shop.

What advice do you have for a first-time One of a Kind Show vendor?
Start creating stock early, bring a big bottle for water (it’s dry in there), pack your own food (junk food takes its toll and they are long days!) and ask a friend to come and give you an hour’s break in the middle of each day, if possible (if you can’t afford to hire a booth sitter). Smile and enjoy it. It’s a great time.

Do you have a favourite OOAK show moment/memory to share?
On day 3 (of 5) a woman I recognized from earlier in the show came up to my table (in the Etsy section) and headed straight for the basket of catnip balls, exclaiming to her friend, “I bought one of these on Wednesday and my cats just love it!” and bought 6 more right there!

You can find me on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, www.lynnslids.com, Pinterest, my Etsy shop, and here, on the blog. To find me in person, check out my upcoming markets (via Etsy) or my where page.

Lynn's Lids baker boy cap with flower

Etsy listings & a new toque

It’s a funny thing, applying to an Etsy event. They basically look at your shop to jury you, so you’ve got to get a bunch of listings up to make sure you have the full variety of your products up. To be honest, I’ve only sold a couple of hats via Etsy, and they were custom orders, from folks who knew exactly what they wanted. I personally would never buy a hat I hadn’t tried on, so I don’t try to push the hats very hard online, and therefore never have many hats in my Etsy shop. Which is weird, because the hats are why I get out and do the in-person markets / fairs / art sales.

So, even though right now I don’t want to be selling much on Etsy (I’m hoarding stock for both the Cabbagetown Art & Crafts Sale and Danforth East Arts Fair), I have just added a bunch of listings, including a couple of these super-cute tree toppers. (And if you’re wondering why there is a Mason jar there, it is for size comparison. I figure most folks have seen a 20oz Mason jar, but may not be able to picture 8″ in their heads, or have a ruler handy.)

What am I applying for? I’ve already been accepted to the flagship Etsy: Made in Canada market that’s presented by TEST and 416 Hustler down at the MaRS Atrium, but apparently there is a media event on the night before for a handful of the 100 vendors accepted to the market, so I thought I’d throw my hat in for that, as it were. Wish me luck, folks!

Oh, and here’s a little sneak peek at something I’ll have at Cabbagetown. I was encouraged to make this by my sons, surprise, surprise…

Lynn's Lids Creeper Toque



June needle felting class project

This is actually just a quick post for Jennifer at The Purple Purl so she can go ahead and choose a photo for the Needle Felting Class page since she’s updating the classes in the next week. So you get a sneak peek at the June 12 (7-9 pm) class project, which will be a sweet little bird.

More info soon on The Purple Purl’s website.

Lynn's Lids needle felted robin

Lynn's Lids needle felted robin

Lynn's Lids needle felted robin

Lynn's Lids needle felted robin

Lynn's Lids needle felted robin

Lynn's Lids needle felted robin

Lynn's Lids needle felted robin



One last sale before OOAK…

The Annex Flea Sunday February 9, 10am-4pm at 720 Bathurst St. just South of Bloor (Centre for Social Innovation)I couldn’t resist. Just One. Last. Sale. It’s just that it’s winter, and it’s cold, and I’ve never been to the Annex Flea before, and… and… (I have a problem, I know.)

Anyway, I’m in. Because, as they say on the Annex Flea blog: in addition to hats, “Tea cosies and tablet computer cosies will also keep you, your tea, and your technology warm in these days of polar vortexes.” (or vortices.)

I thought I might make a few more of the cute little love birds (heart clutching penguins) in case anyone wants to get their cute on:

As for the One of a Kind Show, I am in full maker mode. In fact, I have run out of my Ontario undyed yarn for the dryer balls. My order will hopefully come today.

And in exciting OOAK news, the artisan profiles are up, making it very real! I like how there are several different ways to find folks including Category (hats, for me), Company Name, Last Name, Club One (that’s the vendors who give a discount for Club One members. It won’t be updated for a while, I think), Neighbourhood (yay, Etsy!), and New to the Show.

Lynn's Lids needle felted love birds

If you want to learn to make this little penguin yourself, call The Purple Purl at 416-463-1162 and see if there’s still any room in Thursday evening’s class.

As for the One of a Kind Show, I am in full maker mode. In fact, I have run out of my Ontario undyed yarn for the dryer balls. My order will hopefully come today.

And in exciting OOAK news, the artisan profiles are up, making it very real! I like how there are several different ways to find folks including Category (hats, for me), Company Name, Last Name, Club One (that’s the vendors who give a discount for Club One members. It won’t be updated for a while, I think), Neighbourhood (yay, Etsy!), and New to the Show.

My heating registers alternate looking like this (sheepy dryer balls drying):

Lynn's Lids sheepy dryer balls drying
And this (a tea cosy drying and waiting for adornment):

Lynn's Lids tea cosy drying

A word on our household. We are all, the whole family, at home. The 2 kids are homeschooled, and my husband moved into his home office from his company’s downtown office a few years ago. Which is great. But I share an office with my husband, and the kids work on my computer, or read on the couch in the office, or on the wee table just outside the office, but when my husband has a phone or video meeting, we need to vacate. I finally found a quick and easy way of moving whatever I’m working on, which makes me happy. This basket used to sit on my desk full of various tools I frequently use. I had a big desk tidy earlier this week and it’s all much more organized now, so I can use this for quick packing. Shown below, a penguin in progress this morning, with wool roving and felting foam. Anyway, enough chit chat. Time to get back to work!

handy basket for quick packing up of current project

Next needle felting workshop

As you may know, I teach needle felting at The Purple Purl in Leslieville (Queen & Jones, NE corner). Jennifer and I got together recently to plan the next two classes and thought this might be a good project for the class before Valentines Day!

All the details are here, if you want to come and learn to make one yourself.

And if you just want to buy one, I listed him in my Etsy shop. And I might be at just one more local sale before the One of a Kind Show for which I may make a few. Details to follow soon…

Lynn's Lids penguin with heart

Two to go!

Many down, two holiday sales to go!

I’m working hard on ornaments today and tonight (snowmen, Santas and reindeer orbs) for the CBC Employees’ Charity Craft Sale on Thursday at the CBC Atrium from 8:30-5:30:

Lynn's Lids needle felted ornaments

And I have a few hats blocking as well. Here are a couple (striped toque and bucket hat, blocked with the brim up, but generally worn with it down. Except if you’re me, it appears.):

Lynn's Lids striped toque in navy and teal

Lynn's Lids bucket hat in purple heather

And now I have to get back to work!

Hope to see you Thursday at the CBC or Saturday at the Toronto Etsy Street Team’s first annual Christmas Marketplace from 11-5:30 in the Church of Saint Stephen-in-the-Fields
at 103 Bellevue Ave at College.