~All Yardage Cut Continuously ~

Learn to Crochet with Etsy shop owner Rabecca of The Wheel and Spindle

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Creative Fabric Projects! 

An Interview with The Wheel and Spindle!

    I recently had the pleasure of connecting with Etsy shop owner Rabecca Witzke who sells handmade crochet and knit items that are unique and beautiful! Rabecca has been working hard on a video series to create crochet projects from cute headbands to crochet hook holders and makeup brush holders! Please check out her videos and listen close for coupons you can use at Spindle+Rose and Rebecca's store - The Wheel and Spindle.

I sat down with this busy mama of two (expecting a third soon :) to get some insight on her store and her projects. Check out the interview below! Thank you <3 <3

Do you like knitting or crochet better? Or are they each better for specific projects?

 I personally prefer to crochet. 1. Because it goes much faster than knitting (in my opinion) and I only have so much time in my day being a wife, mother, homeschooling my 3 year old and being flexible for my farmer husband's schedule. 2. Having children makes crocheting easier because you can put down your crocheting and put away the hook and then pick up where you left off, but with knitting I have to leave the needles in my work and then try to hide the whole thing somewhere where my kids won't try to "help" me. And when they do "help me," I get pretty behind. 

What made you to open an Etsy shop and how do you find ways to work on your shop and items with little ones :) ?
About three months after I had my oldest daughter I was getting pretty bored and lonely being at home with a baby all day everyday. Let's be honest, babies are cute but they aren't great conversationalists. I went to my Mom's group one Wednesday morning and the lady that was giving a demonstration that day just happened to own her own Etsy shop where she sells these adorable handmade dolls. She taught us all how to make a miniature doll that morning and after that day I just kept thinking about selling on Etsy. I thought about what I could sell, how I could possibly make it work with a baby and how to actually start. Eventually I told my husband about my idea and he said to just dive on in, so I did. And thus, the Wheel and Spindle was born. 
 

Now, about how I make it work with kids....Somedays I surprise myself with how I manage.Just yesterday, I was trying to compress my second video for the Crocheting Course I'm launching at the end of March and my 3 year old and my 17 month old were intently watching the little bar on my computer screen get longer and longer. I had to walk away fro a moment when they were distracted so I could start supper and I came back 2 minutes later to see my 3 year old shutting my laptop after my video had been compressing for over an hour. I think my jaw literally hit the floor. 

I think the most important thing while trying to run a business with two toddlers is to give yourself grace. You may have a million plans for how you want your day to go but one kid keeps peeing her pants (even though she's fully potty trained) and the other just wants to snuggle off and on for 30 seconds at a time ALL DAY LONG. 

Nap time is SACRED. This is not "me time," it is GO TIME. I put one kid down at 1 and the other at 1:30 and then I dive into the work I have planned to do that day. I try not to even go pee in the 2 hours I have to work because it takes time away from what I can accomplish (but at 16 weeks pregnant, there is little I can do about that right now). 

Another life saver for me, is my planner. I bought a very expensive, very beautiful planner from Brilliant Business Moms. It is AMAZING. Next year, you have to get one too. It has sections to plan projects, write notes, jot down ideas, reflect on your past week, meal plan, plan out your entire week, plan for work, keep track of habits, plan your month, goal set, and it also has inspirational quotes on monthly pages with tabs to easily find where you are. I sit down every Sunday night and plan my week out as well as reflect on my past week. My kids are NOT allowed to touch my planner or even breathe close to it and they know it. 

I utilize the TV. I'm not ashamed to admit it, I let them watch about an hour of netflix in the morning while I shower, get dressed, do my devotions and throw a load of dishes in the dishwasher. I usually shut it off just after they have a snack and then I don't turn it on again until I need to prep supper. (unless everyone is sick) 

If I have something pressing I really need to get done in the morning, I will sit on a chair in the playroom so they will stay there and play and not get into nail polish or play in the toilet. If there is something quick I have to do, but I need my hands totally free, I'll actually run a bath for them with bubbles or soap paint (something special to keep them distracted) and then I'll sit on the stool beside the tub and work for a few minutes. They get clean and I get work done. 

Where do you find your inspiration?

It is hard to get inspiration these days, or is that just me...? As artisans we don't want to copy someone else's work that they obviously spent a lot of time brainstorming themselves but it also seems like no idea is new these days. I do go on Pinterest frequently and browse crocheted items specific to the season I want to crochet for and I get ideas but I don't copy. If someone offers a free pattern, you can copy that for sure, but when there is no pattern listed with a photo, I make up my own and I make it my own. I use different stitches than what I see, and I often revamp the whole concept. Sometimes, I have a friend ask me to make something that I have never done or wouldn't have thought of myself. 

What is your creative space/ shop space like?
 Well, this would have been really cool to show you about 4 months ago, but since my husband has opened up the wall in our house to our sun-room, my office has become the play room. I used to have this really cool little room off the sun-room so it wasn't technically attached to rest of the house but it kind of was...However, we are only living in the top half of our raised bungalow right now because the basement is unfinished so the kids' toys were all over my dining room and kitchen and I was sick of tripping over them all day long. So when the wall between the dining room and the sun-room came down, I moved all the kids' toys to my office space and my office is currently in limbo in the unfinished, very cold basement. So I often just work in front of the wood stove in our sun-room or at the dining room table or the coffee table in the living room. It's not ideal but one day, my husband will actually finish dry walling the office and I will have my space again. 


Your combination of knitting/crochet with sewn in fabric is really pretty and unique - where did you find your patterns and do you like mixing yarns with prints?

Thank you. I honestly came up with that idea all on my own. my kids were constantly getting their fingers and toes stuck in their crocheted blankets in their cribs and it was driving me nuts. I also was worried that maybe it would cut off the circulation on their toes or something. So I decided to sew fabric on the backs of the blankets. This worked really well and it made the blankets twice as warm so I needed fewer blankets to keep them warm at night. Also, living in Canada can get pretty cold in the winter months and these blankets were perfect for taking walks with the stroller because they were so thick. 

Once I had worked out a pattern for these, I thought, what else can I line with fabric? And that's when I had the idea for the crochet hook holder. I love to mix fabrics and yarns. It makes for a really unique and interesting project and even though I hand sew it all, I still enjoy it. This year I'm donating a fabric-lined baby blanket to Ramoth House for every blanket I sell. (Ramoth house is a place for pregnant women or women with young children to get assistance and help if they are on their own). So if you know anyone who is pregnant or has a small baby at home, this would be a great gift to get them and you know it's going to help other young moms. 

Thank you Rabecca! We look forward to the entire video series on YouTube and learning more crochet projects from you!!

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  • Alexa Clauson
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