Sunday, October 09, 2011

meet reni :: knit girl in idaho {and a giveaway!}



time for another fabulous sponsor introduction! reni makes super cute personalized stitch markers for knitting and crochet as well as wine charms. i met her last december when i was lucky enough to be her neighbor at a holiday craft show. i had so much fun chatting with her that afternoon! please read her introduction, visit her shop and enter her generous giveaway at the bottom of this post! 
xo, erika
Tell us a little about yourself!I grew up in Anchorage, Alaska and moved to Washington for my freshman year of college, which is where I met my husband a short time later.  After dating a few years, my husband and I were married one week after we graduated from college, which is almost 25 years ago now!  In 2005, we decided we needed a slower lifestyle so we packed up and moved to Idaho. We have two wonderful boys, our oldest is 18 and just started his first year of college, and my youngest is almost 15 and started his freshman year of high school.  Being the only female in the house sometimes has its downside (like cleaning toilets!), but most of the time I feel blessed and lucky to have three very special men in my life.  My family is very supportive and always encourage me in my "crafty" endeavors!

Tell us about the wonderful things that you create! When did you learn your craft and who taught you?
My mom taught me how to knit when I was a little girl, but I lost interest somewhere along the way and didn't pick it back up again until after my second child was born. I have been absolutely addicted to knitting ever since. My first knitting projects were very simple garter stitch scarf projects, and then I went through a phase of knitting nothing but dishclothes! Dishclothes are very small, quick projects that are a wonderful way for a beginning knitter to try new techniques they might otherwise be intimidated to try. Knitting dishclothes is how I learned to master cables, yarn-overs, ssk, etc.... Once I acquired these new skills, I felt confident knitting more advanced scarf patterns.
Eventually, I was bit by the sock knitting bug and now socks are my all-time favorite project to knit!  Sock projects are great because they are small, portable projects that travel well (you can carry it with you in your purse!). Most sock patterns can be knit with one skein of sock yarn, and there are literally thousands of free or inexpensive sock patterns available for knitters at every level.  One thing most sock patterns have in common is that they call for stitch markers or place markers. Stitch markers slide on your knitting needle to help you keep track of your stitches while knitting a section of the heel. There are many different types and styles of stitch markers available, but I found most of them to be boring so I decided to create my own.  I shared a picture of my new stitch markers to some of my pals on Ravelry (a FANTASTIC online knitting and crochet community!) and a couple of them said they would pay me to make them a set too! This led to more and more people wanting to buy my stitch markers, hence my Etsy shop, KnitGirl in Idaho was born.  My best customers today are these same friends from Ravelry!
  
I specialize in making personalized stitch markers using any photo, personal logo or short saying. The question I get asked more than any other is "how do you make those?" My answer is that it has taken me years to perfect the process and countless hours of trial and error, so I am very protective of my craft!   I will say that whenever I think I have the system down to an exact science, undoubtedly there will be equipment failure or a supplier that changes.  I have to be flexible to change and ready to roll with the tide at any given time.  There are other Etsy shops that sell similar items to mine, but don't be fooled by the copycats out there! My stitch markers are the originals of their kind and can be found at The Loopy Ewe  as well as many other online retailers and yarn stores. Also, be watching the newsstands because I received good news that my stitch markers will be seen in a couple magazines in the coming months! 
 Are there any new items in the works for your shop?

I am very excited because I recently started selling removable stitch markers for crochet, which is a brand new market for me!  Unlike knitting stitch markers that slide on the knitting needle, these stitch markers use a lobster
clasp that clips directly on the yarn in a crochet project. 
 
In January of this year, I also opened a second Etsy shop called Wine Charms by Design.  I started this shop for those people who love my stitch marker charms but, sadly, don't knit. I use the same charms as on my stitch markers, but they are on a wire hoop that wraps around the stem of a wine glass or other stemmed glassware.  As with my Knit Girl shop, I also specialize in personalized wine charms and have done several sets for weddings.


What's your day job and do you have any other hobbies or passions?
 

My husband and I also own a business together that has been in the family for 3 generations. He's the sales & marketing dept and I'm the taxes & bookkeeping dept!  We've always had the luxury of working from home so one or both of us is usually around when the boys would get home from school.  Now that the boys are almost grown up, our family time is a high commodity.  We cherish our time together, whether we're watching a soccer or basketball game or just relaxing at home in the evenings together.  Aside from knitting, I am an avid reader. I will read just about any genre and never, never leave home without a book! 

Please let us know where we can find you - etsy, blog, facebook, etc.
 
Knit Girl in Idaho Etsy shop: www.KnitGirlinIdaho.com
Facebook: Knit Girl in Idaho
Twitter: KnitGirlinIdaho
Ravelry: KnitGirlinIdaho
Email: knitgirlinidaho@gmail.com
 
Wine Charms by Design Etsy shop: www.WineCharmsbyDesign.com
Facebook: Wine Charms by Design
Email: winecharmsbydesign@gmail.com


for today's giveaway reni has offered to one lucky winner either a set of 4 Personalized Stitch Markers (choice of Knitting or Crochet) OR a set of 4 Personalized Wine Charms (wouldn't these make GREAT gifts?!). also she is happy to ship internationally so anyone is welcome to throw their name into the hat!

- to enter visit reni's shops and let us know what item you would choose! 
extra entries (leave a separate comment for each one)
- add either (or both!) of reni's shops to your etsy favorites
- "like" reni's facebook page
- follow reni on twitter


i will close the comments and choose a winner on thursday october 13th. good luck, friends!

comments are now closed - i will post the lucky winner's name later this evening!

38 comments:

amchart said...

Added stitch marker shop to Etsy favorites. Rav amchart

amchart said...

Would love some stitch markers with pics of my kids. I'd have to double up on some as I have six (and one on the way)! Rav amchart

amchart said...

Liked on Facebook too! Rav amchart

Carmen said...

I think I'd like the personalized knit stitch markers - I'd put my family on them so I could take them with me always!

Carmen said...

I now follow @KnitGirlinIdaho (cmouse01)

Carmen said...

I added KnitGirlinIdaho to my Etsy favorites.

Kenyetta said...

I love the personalized Knit charms

Kenyetta said...

I added Knit girl in idaho to my etsy favorites

Kenyetta said...

I added winecharms by design to my etsy favorites

Michaela said...

I love the personalized knit stitch markers, I would definitely pick those with some photos of my family and I!

Michaela said...

I have also added Reni's stitch marker shop to my etsy favourites!

Michaela said...

I have also liked Reni's Facebook page! :)

Knittingdancer on Ravelry said...

I like the fall pumpkins stitch markers and the knitting charms stitch markers: ssk, k2tog, m1, and yo.

lorraine said...

how awesome id have to choose the knitting stich markers if i won ..thanks so much! raineoc@yahoo.com

lorraine said...

i added her shop KnitGirlinIdaho to my faves on etsy! raineoc@yahoo.com

lorraine said...

i liked her on fb KnitGirlinIdaho ... raineoc@yahoo.com

afh163 said...

Added her easy shop as a favorite!

afh163@gmail.com

afh163 said...

Following on twitter!

afh163@gmail.com

afh163 said...

I love the photo stitch markers. I would definitely love my kitties faces on them! Also, the Lucky Sparkle Keep Calm & Tiara Charm Stitch Markers are adorable!

afh163@gmail.com

Kara said...

i really like the bird stitch markers and the knitting abbreviation stitch marker set. I wonder if it would be possible to make a very tiny kitchener stitch tag reminder? That would be both cute and useful!

MrsCollinHobbs on Ravelry

Kara said...

Added shop to Etsy favorites! (etsy id MamaHobbit)

Kara said...

Liked Facebook page! (FB id Kara Hobbs)

Kara said...

Following on Twitter! (Twitter id MamaHobbit)

Debbie said...

I love the personalized knit stitch markers.

Debbie said...

I added your stitch marker Etsy shop to my favorites. Debbie

Debbie said...

I added the wine marker Etsy shop to my favs. Debbie

Debbie said...

I follow on Twitter. Debbie

Debbie said...

I liked her on Facebook. Debbie

knitterlydesigns said...

I follow you on Twitter as knitterlydesign

knitterlydesigns said...

I just 'friended' you on ravelry.
rav: Knitterlydesigns

knitterlydesigns said...

I love these! I would choose the personalized knitting stitch markers and put my two little cutie babies on there.

knitterlydesigns said...

I just 'faved' you in ETSY as knitterlydesigns

Knittinggirl said...

I love the Whimsical owls, and the "keep calm" ones. Soo cool!

I'm Knittinggirl13 on rav.

Knittinggirl said...

I don't have a facebook, but my Mum "liked" Reni's Knit girl in Idaho and Wine Charms by design facebook pages on behalf of me. (Julia Imamova).

I'm Knittinggirl13 on rav.

Sarah said...

I absolutely love the stitch markers with the dancing zombies!

Sarah said...

Following on Twitter as OnBeingaKnitwit

Judi said...

I like all of her creations! Of course I like the personalized stitch markers, but would have to think about what pictures to put on them. Other favorite is the knitting stitch markers.

Zowmom on Ravelry

squiggi said...

I would choose the personalized stitch markers with my "baby", my boxer, yogi bear.
I'm squiggi on ravelry