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  • Six Months Without Instagram: What I Learned

    Today I returned to Instagram after being away for over six months. Before I forget about my time away, I want to reflect on what I've learned. 

    1. Competition in business can take many forms. There isn't one right way to compete and get your name out there. 

    2. Small businesses like mine do not need to be held to the same standards as huge corporations. Small businesses can be personal and unique. My particular business may not be right for everyone. And since I can't possibly dye yarn for everyone anyways...this is totally fine! 

    3. Being away from IG and most social media has really made me re-think my "style" and wardrobe. I know this might sound silly, but it's been a huge revelation to me. Since I'm no longer influenced by all the images on IG, I've reverted back to my natural style, which is mostly 1940s-inspired. Unfortunately, this means that a large portion of what I have sewn and purchased in the last couple years no longer appeals to me. Ugh. One of these days I'll have my wardrobe figured out....

    4. I'm not a minimalist! Yes, after years trying to get rid of all my possessions and live the picture-perfect Instagrammable life, I have realized I like my pretty things and the memories and feelings attached to them. Especially my books. A few years ago I parted with the majority of my books, and I really do regret this now. It used to make me so happy to just look at them and be able to pick one from the shelf and read it right there. Fortunately, I did keep all my antique books, which I knew I would never be able to replace.

    5. My family is pretty amazing. These are the people I should be focusing on more than anyone else. They've been there for me my whole life, and continue to cheer me on through thick and thin.

    6. No matter how many followers you have or how "in" you are with the popular kids on IG, in the end it's your product that will make or break your business. 

    7. Before returning, I went through and unfollowed nearly every other yarny person apart from some customers. I do my best to dye beautiful colors. I don't need to be influenced by what others are doing. I'm inspired by history, fashion, nature, movies etc., not by my competition. My feed is now mostly cats, dogs, and vintage fashion.

    6. It's been oddly therapeutic to watch YouTube videos from ex-cult members. I actually feel like I was part of some weird knitting cult for years and didn't know it. There are so many similarities, with the shunning aspect probably being the most obvious one. One of my favorite YouTube channels is called Bravely Taylor. She's been my "therapy" through these last six months. 

    7. Listen to your gut. Don't give in to peer pressure. It's tough, but you'll feel so much better about yourself in the end. 

  • Advice To Anyone Who Has Been Silent (WE SEE YOU)

    1. No one is forcing you to do anything, make any public statements of allegiance, or threatening you if you decide to disagree. You are completely free to do or say whatever you like. Yes, we will go after you and attempt to destroy you if you disagree, but this is just a consequence of your misguided actions. The fault is not ours. You asked for it.

    2. If you follow someone who follows someone who follows someone who has shown themselves to be problematic, be sure to contact them and make them aware of this. Tell them plainly and simply that you will unfollow them if they do not unfollow these problematic people. 

    3. It's a good idea to edit your profile to include virtue signals such as your preferred pronouns, stating your account is a "safe place", and/or your support of Ravelry. This won't protect you, but it's a good place to start. Though, bear in mind that if you do these things, and then do say something that others take offense to, the online mobbing you will be subject to could be even more vicious. 

    4. Make sure you hire a therapist now. You never know who the next target will be, so you will want to be sure you have help to get you through it in case you are next. Of course, admitting to mental health struggles will just be a sign of your white fragility (whether you’re white or not), privilege, or huge ego etc., so you probably don't want to talk about this online ever. We will use this against you and send you further into depression.

    5. Don’t assume that your intersectional points will win you any support or excuse you. In fact, once you say you disagree with us (even in just the slightest), where you land on the intersectional scale is irrelevant and you will be taken down regardless. You should know by now that all we want is power and destruction, and do not have compassion for those we claim to be the voices of.

    6. If you prefer to do "the work" outside of Instagram and social media, you are free to do so. But this does not mean you should abandon social media. This is today, and today social media is where revolutions are happening. This is where real change happens and you cannot ignore your duties here. You leaving social media or stating you wish to do the "the work" in the real world is just a very clear sign of your weakness, fragility and privilege. We have done so much work already (such as destroying hateful businesses, smearing reputations, and causing emotional breakdowns and depression in those who deserve it), but this is just the beginning. We have the power to peacefully destroy even more on social media. We might even need to destroy you if need be. So, do not leave it. 

    7. I've mentioned this before, but you really need to keep questioning yourself and doubting yourself. Are you really an ally?

  • Our 1940's Portland Courthouse Wedding

    Saying our vows at the Multnomah County Courthouse. Our judge, Angel Lopez, was really great and personable. And he laughed when he saw our last name, which put us and our families at ease. I was so excited and a bit giddy, and said "I do" before I was supposed to. 
    On the stairs at the courthouse, just after taking our vows. 
    Garrett's uncle went and rented a scooter for us. We wound up just using it for some cute pictures rather than actually riding around town. Having never used an electric scooter before, I was a bit worried I'd crash it.
    We reserved Barlow, a super neat little bar/restaurant just a few blocks from the courthouse for our reception. We had our vintage music playing and got to do a little dancing. Our first dance was technically "In The Mood" by Glen Miller. We all went out dancing later that night at the Secret Society in Portland. 
    I made my dress from a 1940's pattern I bought from a seller on Etsy. I'm planning on doing an entire YouTube video on my outfit soon, so if you're interested keep an eye out for that!
    It was seriously the happiest day of my life, and I wouldn't change a thing!