2012 FreshStitches (business-y) Wrap-up

As the year comes to a close, I can’t help but look back at the year and analyze how it’s gone. In practice, I do these sorts of analyses just about every month, so I can adjust my business plans accordingly. But… it’d be a little boring if I shared with you that often!

So, every year at this time, I share and chat about how the year has progressed from a business-y perspective (you can read the 2011 and 2010 wrap-ups if you’d like!)

Exciting 2012 Happenings

I can’t believe how exciting 2012 has been! This year, I:

This year, I focused on a cohesive business plan. For example, teaching the Craftsy classes was not only deliriously fun, but the courses also fill much-needed niches for my customers. Many folks are interested in crocheting animals from my patterns, but needed to learn the basic skills in a video-based format: the Woodland Animals class fabulously filled this need!

Additionally, launching a Ravelry group provided a much-needed forum for my customers & fellow crocheters to chat and interact! I hadn’t realized how important this was until I started the group… but the Ravelry group has become a crucial location for customers to ask questions and make suggestions. And it’s fun!

Pattern Sales

Even though I teach, blog and do freelance design, pattern sales remain the leading source of income for my business.

In 2012, the breakdown of sales looked like this:

income from pattern sales on Ravelry and Etsy

Because I run the Ravelry shopping cart on my website, I’ve conflated sales from my site and those directly from Ravelry. Sales from Ravelry (and my site) are now the majority of sales, as compared to Etsy. This is an increased percentage from last year and was one of my goals for the year.

Meeting Business Goals

I just realized that I didn’t write a blog post detailing my business goals for 2012. So, I’ll tell you what they were (and I promise that I’m not altering them retro-spectively!)

  • Continue to lead a balanced work/personal life
  • Increase my activity in the national teaching circuit
  • Increase my proportion of wholesale sales (to yarn stores)
  • Increase number of patterns sold
  • Increase number of Facebook fans

I’ve been pretty successful, even though I suppose that success is relative since I didn’t set any numerical goals.

Except for the final month or so of writing my new book manuscript, I ended each day of work at 6pm and kept the weekends work-free. I also booked a few national teaching slots (including teaching some awesome classes at Stitches). My pattern sales also continued to increase over previous years… and I’m ecstatic that the FreshStitches Facebook Page is at around 6,000 fans!

I haven’t been as successful at increasing my proportion of wholesale pattern sales. Hmm. I’ll have to put my thinking cap on about this one.

Meeting Personal Goals

I did come up with a list of 2012 knitting and crochet goals… and even though I forgot what they were, it seems like I’ve done all of them! Hooray! (Just goes to show: they were things that I really wanted to do!)

beginners needle felted bear cuet

These goals included knitting Color Affection & Spectra as well as needle felting.

Looking forward to 2013!

How was your 2012? One of the most exciting parts of this year for me (even though it doesn’t fit into one of the tidy categories above) was discovering how many of my readers are interested in growing their love of yarn into a business. I’d love to hear about your progress!

Don’t forget that tomorrow is my super-exciting birthday sale!

You’ll want to check back for the coupon code… start preparing your wish-list!

7 replies on “2012 FreshStitches (business-y) Wrap-up

  • Mariana

    Congratulations Stacey!!
    It’s been great for me as one of your multi-followers (facebook, twitter, craftsy , blog and Ravelry) to see and enjoy your beautifull and hard work this year.
    I’m sure the next one will be even better with your third book coming!!
    Happy New Year!!

  • Michelle

    You have really inspired me and I enjoy reading your blog. My goal for 2013 is to build and launch my fondness for crochet into a thriving buisness! And you have given me a lot of ideas!
    I wish a wonderful birthday tomorrow!

  • Patty

    WOW! Seeing the numbers is very impressive. I would love a posting (blog or podcast) on how you balance business & personal life. I am very excited to see what 2013 brings!

    Thank you for all your wonderful inspiration on leading a full life.

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