Here is the official transcript from Crochetville’s live chat with crochet designer Kim Guzman that took place on our Facebook page on Friday, October 25. Questions are in no particular order. We had so many questions that I’ve had to divide this blog post up into multiple parts. Links to all parts can be found at the bottom of this page.
(Note: Text appears as it was entered during the live chat.)
We hope you’ll join us on our Facebook page for future chats with more of your favorite crochet designers.
Transcript of Live Chat with Crochet Designer Kim Guzman, Part 4 of 4
Alaina: How do you get it all done? Do you have a work schedule, priority list. You seem to breeze through all the design, writing, teaching,chatting (:, all while being a great Mom, cook, gardener etc. Do you sleep. What’s your secret?
Kim Guzman: I have no schedule. I sleep when I’m sleepy. I eat when I’m hungry. I’m like a toddler. I work on one thing until I complete it whether it’s crocheting, cooking, canning or gardening. As I get older, I’ve found that I can’t concentrate if I don’t finish it all in one shot.
Alaina: Well, you make it look so simple! Any tips for organizing your work area, supplies, etc?
Kim Guzman: I have my yarn in large, clear plastic bins. I have a three-drawer cabinet, one drawer has knitting needles, one has crochet hooks and one has Tunisian hooks. That is the extent of my organization.
Mary: So. What do you like to do with your OFF time?
Kim Guzman: I rarely have off time. When I’m not crocheting or knitting, I am homeschooling my son, canning, gardening, mowing the lawn. I am a huge fan of watching movies while I’m working and I’ve got a crazy big number of DVDs. Seriously. Crazy.
Cyndye: LOL…some of her once a year off time is spent sitting on my front porch. She can talk your ear off!
Susan Heyn: I’ve been self publishing for a while. Any tips on getting accepted into a magazine? My designs are mostly holiday and home décor. I haven’t tried to design a garment yet.
Kim Guzman: You’ll just want to find a publisher or yarn company who you feel will make a good fit. Then, research their guidelines and submit, usually by email. Good luck!
Laurinda Reddig: I got started submitting designs to the CGOA design competition, and recommend going to a CGOA conference for the designer meet & greet if possible.
Tammy Hildebrand: You can learn more about CGOA here http://www.crochet.org/
Susan Heyn: Thanks Laurinda, I hope to get to the Manchester show in July.
Laurinda Reddig: I sent designs to the competition for 2 years before I was able to attend. But the “facetime” with editors is such an awesome opportunity offered by CGOA!
Susan Heyn: Thanks Tammy, I just joined CGOA about a week ago and also applied for associate professional status and a mentor.
Tammy Hildebrand: Wonderful!!!
Lorene Eppolite: I second joining the CGOA and attending a conference. It has helped me tremendously. I am working on my first set of published patterns now!!! Very excited. I also met some amazing people!!!!
Laurinda Reddig: Oh yeah, also get a mentor through CGOA. “Hi Lorene!”
Lorene Eppolite: Hi “unofficial” mentor (for now at least… still waiting to hear back from the guild), lol
Tammy Hildebrand: lol
Cyndye: I know you have been putting up a lot of How-To video’s on your youtube page. How many are you up to now? And how many more are planned?
Kim Guzman: I think I have about 60 videos on YouTube right now. Right and left handed versions. Right now, I’m focusing on stitches and still have a list of them to do. After that, I plan on putting up helpful techniques and projects.
Joanne: Have u ever used a yarn that company gave u to make a pattern that u disliked?
Kim Guzman: Yes, but I’ve tried to bring out the best in the yarn, no matter my personal feelings. I think the worst is trying to design with a color I don’t like.
Crochetville: We have about 15 minutes left in the chat. If any questions posted during the chat remain unanswered, we’ll make sure Kim provides an answer to them. I’ll be posting a transcript of the chat today or tomorrow on the Crochetville blog (http://crochetville.com/) and the Crochetville social community message board (http://crochetville.com/
Amy Roberts Shelton: Tammy Hildebrand was the guest designer at last week’s live chat. If you missed the chat, you can go to the blog to read the full transcript.
Cyndye: You have done a smash up job this morning, Amy! Thanks!
Roxanne: Great job, very pleased with this event but I think some improvements could be made! By choosing a topic and maybe some sub topics, just a suggestion thank you all and have a blessed day
Amy Roberts Shelton: Roxanne, we’re still experimenting with the best way to do these chats. This week was actually a big improvement from holding the chat on our main page. I’m sure we’ll come up with all sorts of improvements as time goes by, especially with help from our chat participants.
If you or anyone have suggestions for future chats, please send them to us via Facebook Message. Unfortunately, we’re pretty limited by what can actually be done on Facebook, so please keep those things in mind when making suggestions.
Joann: Are there any tips for enlarging a toddler pattern to ages 5-8? Having trouble finding patterns I like for this age group.
Kim Guzman: I use the information on the YarnStandards.com website. Once you’ve done a swatch, you can then use those numbers to size up according to the sizes on the site. If you’re making something for a child you have, it will be easier. It may mean some ripping out and starting over, but it gets easier.
Becky: Kim are you still a member of Heart Made Blessings?
Kim Guzman: I haven’t had a lot of time lately to keep up.
Becky: I sure under stand that,I dropped out when my soninlaw died.took me a while to pick my hooks up again.
Jennifer: I make a TON of personalized blankets like the one pictured… make my own graphs for them etc… I’ve never been good at pricing though …. any help with that??
Kim Guzman: I’ve never sold finished projects, but I believe I would first do a lot of research online to see how other similar items are priced, remembering that personalized items always have a higher price for personalization.
Jennifer: Thank you!! I can’t believe I’m getting advice from YOU!! HOW EXCITING!!!!!
Tammy: That’s an awesome afghan Jennifer!
Jo Ann: OMG!!! I have a projec tfor you!!!
Jennifer: Thank you Tammy!!!
Roxanne: I’ve not tried this yet! Afghans are big projects but I have beading patterns that have dome really beautiful floral designs I will attempt to do a small scale sample like a pillow cover! Thanks for sharing that’s a awesome Afghan!!
Amy Roberts Shelton: Everyone, please be careful to follow trademark and copyright laws when selling items that feature team or company logos, popular characters, etc. Licensing arrangements may be required, which are usually quite expensive. Some college teams now participate in a program that grants permission for selling hand-made items, like crocheted afghans, without applying for a license.
If you’re publicizing any of your sales online, it’s very important you make sure you have the right licensing/permission in place. Trademark owners can come after you and seek payment for everything you’ve sold, perhaps punitive damages, and they can also have all your inventory featuring their intellectual property confiscated.
Jennifer: thank you Laurinda!
Susan: Beautiful afghan!
Jennifer: oh I would LOVE to see the beading works you have done Roxanne – they sound beautiful!!!
Thank you Amy, I will – this is our local high school …
Thank you Susan!!
Roxann, I make my own patterns – crocheting using a graph patter is SO much easier than a lot of people think .. each square is one single crochet .. it’s just a matter of understanding how to change color and use the graph!! I can basically (and have) take a picture of something, graph it then crochet it!! I also use YouTube if I get stuck on how to do a certain stitch etc!!
Gina: Beautiful job
Janine: That is gorgeous you are so talented…I would price based on if you know them, how long it took, etc…..i have seen them go for 50 – 100 at craft fairs. And then other are pricing them 15-25. So really up to you.
Alissa: Jenn this is amazing!!!
Kelli: I was taught to charge 3x what was paid for the yarn
Jennifer: 15-25 dollars?? I’d be OUTTA my mind to sell them for that little. The amount of time that goes into something like this is unreal. usually these start at $200.00 …. it’s something you will NEVER be able to buy in a store.
Laurinda: Yeah, I used to charge 3x cost of materials. But that doesn’t even begin to pay you for your work (which is why I gave up on craft fairs, and started designing).
Roxanne: Jennifer, the beading patterns are on graph paper for every square is one bead so I would think it would work just fine. Yup and there’s tons if beading patterns, not just native but all sorts, animals, floral, kids like the Kitty so I would think the bead graph designs would work?
Amy Roberts Shelton: 3x the cost of materials is not a good way to set a selling price. There are many things to be considered when setting a selling price for finished items. This is one of the things we cover in Crochetville’s Business Mastermind Group.
Jennifer, those afghans could be a major fundraiser for your high school (with the school’s permission of course). If raffles are legal in your state (they’re not in mine), you could sell tickets for the chance to win one of them. Or you could do a silent auction.
Jennifer, when I post the chat transcript on our blog and message board, would you like me to include the afghan photo? I’ll only include it with your permssion, and include a copyright notice to you and that the photo is used with permission.
Laurinda: The fundraiser is an AWESOME idea Amy. I need to think about this for my kids school.
Jennifer: Amy… I will def look into the business mastermind group… sounds like there will be lots of good information there !! The fundraiser is such a GREAT idea!! I recently made a blanket for someone similar to the one shown, and since the person posted a picture of it I now have about 16 of them to make!! YAYY ME!! I would love for you to include the afghan photo!! Thank you so much!!!
Melissa: Matty loved this blanket! Worth every penny I paid jenn…it is still like new and Matt’s had it three years!.
Jennifer: Thank you so much Melissa xoxo
Roxanne: Yes I have have a few, one I created myself its a medallion and another one that was done on a bead loom I can post them the one done on the loom I have that pattern on graph paper ill post it
Amy Roberts Shelton: Thanks, Jennnifer!! That is a gorgeous afghan, by the way!
Jennifer: thank you so much Amy!! Means a lot coming from you!!
the kids pretty cute too huh? LOL
Dawn: Wow. That’s really beautiful
Tom: That’s Awesome!
Jennifer: Thanks Tom!!
Caitlyn: Jen great work!
Jodi: Jen, you are very talented! Beautiful work!
Joyce: About Trademark. If it’s a freehand interpretation of a trademark, that would still be a TM violation right? How do you know how different you have to make it to be ok?
Amy Roberts Shelton: Trademarks are considered intellectual property. You need permission to use another party’s intellectual property. You can find out more about trademark law at the US Patent and Trademark Office website: http://uspto.gov
Kim Guzman: Joyce, Amy has more information on trademark than me. I’m not well-versed in trademark or patent laws.
Lorene: How long do you see yourself designing professionally for? Do you ever intend on selling finished items?
Kim Guzman: I will continue working as long as I’m able. I’ll be 50 in April. I’ve considered selling the items that have been published and I’ve received back from the publisher (after my mother has first pick, of course).
Lorene: I know a lot of people would jump at the chance to purchase a finished item by you! Go for it!
Cyndye: I get first dibs on the jacket used on the cover of Drop Stitch!!! LOL
Amy Roberts Shelton: It’s very difficult to command a price for finished objects that results in a decent hourly rate and also pays for all the materials involved. You can often make more money per hour just by getting a minimum wage job. Unless you’re lucky enough to find a customer segment willing to pay the higher prices to give you a better hourly wage.
Nada: hope not too late…how can we know which yarn is the best for our project? thanks….
Kim Guzman: It is only through experience and knowledge of the yarn. I find that most yarns tell me what they want to be through swatching. I may swatch with a new yarn for hours or even a full day before I decide on a project.
Nada: Thank you @Kim Guzman for sharing. It’s encourge me to crocheting more and more…
Crochetville: Can you believe it’s already been an hour? Time has certainly flown.
Crochetville would like to thank Kim Guzman for being our featured crochet designer for today’s live chat.
We also want to thank each of you for your attendance, participation, and questions.
We welcome your suggestions of other designers you’d like us to schedule for future chats. We hope we’ll see some of you at our upcoming retreat in February!
Mary: Thank you for this opportunity! Thanks Kim!
Ann: I enjoyed it.
Lorene Eppolite: I really enjoyed this… thanks Kim and Crochetvile!!!
Jennifer: Thank you Crochetville for putting this chat on with Kim!! So excited to get great advice from one of the greats!! Where do you normally hold the retreats??
Cyndye: Now I am going to pop over to Crochetville and catch up on things….while I put something in my starving belly.
Amy Roberts Shelton: This is our first ever retreat, in honor of Crochetville’s 10th anniversary. This retreat will be held in Huntsville, AL. At this stage, it’s difficult for me to plan retreats in other locations.
We’re definitely open to the idea of holding them in other locations, but we’d need volunteers in those locations to assist with personal site visits to the chosen hotel, help with setting things up, and so on.
Kim Guzman: Thanks so much for attending, everyone! I enjoyed it and I hope you did as well. So fun that my mother stopped by the event as well. And, now, like the toddler I am, I think I’ll be getting a bit of sleep in between projects. Have a great weekend!
Laurinda: Thanks for all your thoughtful answers to everyone questions. Good stuff! I hope to meet you one of these days.
Tammy: Thank YOU Kim! Have a nice nap
Lorene: Ah sounds good.. I’m putting the little one down in a few.. maybe I’ll follow suit. Thank you!!!
Teena: Loved it, Kim!!! Thanks all!
Susan: Thanks Kim!
Joyce: Thanks Kim. Your’re the best!
Kathy: Thank you Kim for all your help. I need to go to yout web page & check it out.
Amy Roberts Shelton: Kim, thank you so very much for chatting with us today!
Jennifer: Thank you so much for your time and advice!!!
E.D.: Sigh. How do I manage to miss these things??
Amy Roberts Shelton: E.D. Trimm, no worries! You can still read through the chat. Hopefully, somebody else will have asked any questions you would have wanted to ask.
We’re going to try to schedule designer chats every Friday, so be on the watch for more.
LizzieAnne: Thank you, I really enjoyed attending
Crochetville: Crochet Retreat: Crochetville is planning a crochet retreat for the end of February 2014. We are working hard to make it possible for both Kim Guzman and Tammy Hildebrand, along with a few other names you may recognize, to be able to offer classes at the event. Keep watch on the Crochetville Facebook page, blog, and message board for more information. I hope to have registration live by the beginning of November.
Lorene: You all need to stop coming up with new things I need to do… lol. I would love to attend this.. Hey maybe I can carpool with Donna!!!
North Carolina area, Teena begged hopefully…LOL!!
Lorene: I’d second that, lol
Rebecca: Pennsylvania would be a great state to host the retreat – just sayin’.
Tammy: Yeah, North Carolina sounds great! But it’s in Alabama this time!
Teena: Thanks, Tammy!
Amy Roberts Shelton: Sorry, everyone, I did leave out location, didn’t I? It’s going to be here in Huntsville, AL, where I am.
Ann: I am looking forward, I live so close, I can still do taxi mom stuff and go.
Links to Other Parts of Chat Transcript:
About Kim Guzman
Kim Guzman has been designing crochet patterns for over 30 years. She’s had a major online presence since she created her first website in 1998: CrochetKim.com. She’s had designs published in many of the major crochet magazines including Crochet!, Crochet World, and Interweave Crochet. Kim has also had a number of popular leaflets published by Aleene’s Creative Living, Annie’s, and Leisure Arts. You can find her self-published designs on her Kimane Designs website. For more information on all her designs, including a listing of all her published books, please visit her main website. You can also keep up with Kim on Facebook on her crochet designer page.