In today’s post I was going to present a big next step for Yarn Birdy. I was going to say that I had written up the pattern for my popular handwarmers, and soon you would be able to purchase not just the finished product, but the instructions to make a pair for yourself or your loved ones with your own hands.

It seemed like a great next step for Yarn Birdy. To be really profitable, my business needs to sell patterns as well as finished products, and because I sold more of these handwarmers than any other product in my store these past few months, I figured this would be a pattern people would be eager to buy.

I’ve been working on writing up the pattern a bit nervously for three days now. It’s much more difficult to write up a pattern for others than to scribble notes about it for yourself. I need to write this in a way that other knitters, including semi-beginners would feel comfortable following. Which means I can’t just whip up the PDF document and start selling it, like I might whip up and sell a new stuffed animal, I need to first pass it on to test knitters who will make sure my instructions are easy to follow. It’s a longer process.

I was pondering the best way to go about finding good test-knitters when I noticed something remarkable that made me pause. My handwarmers, far and away my most popular items for the months of November, December and January, have gotten hardly a click or a glance in the past week. In fact, my various handwarmers accounted for 24% of all clicks in my etsy store in both December and January, but only 6% of clicks so far in February! It’s still cold and wintery in most of the northern hemisphere. Why are people loosing interest in handwarmers?

I mentioned this surprising bit of data to a friend yesterday, and a glimmer of understanding spread over his face. “you know,” he said, “just last week I went to the mall to buy a pair of warm winter pants, and they had none to sell me. All they had on the floor was their spring collection of pants, and the few pairs of winter pants left in the back weren’t my size. They must figure people have already bought everything they need for winter, and are already looking to make purchases for the coming spring.”

I’ve always thought the fashion industry was a little crazy, for doing things like sell bikinis in February, but maybe my friend and I are the ones who are unusual. Maybe most people do think ahead and are ready to make spring purchases by now. Maybe handwarmer season really is over for the year, and I should focus on writing my first pattern for a more spring-appropriate product, saving the handwarmer pattern for next fall.

This leads me to my poll. Help me out by answering some of these questions for me:

A) Are you already thinking about spring when you shop for clothes / toys / accessories?

B) Do you think it’s too late in the season to release the handwarmer pattern? If you’re a knitter might you be interested in it?
         B.2) Would you be interested in being a test-knitter for me? (for handwarmers or any other future pattern) Advanced, intermediate, and nearly-beginner knitters welcome. 

C) What are some good spring products Yarn Birdy could start working on? My toys are year-round, but maybe there are some toys -like bunnies, or designs -like something floral, that are specific to the coming season that I could focus on. My handwarmers made a fantastic balance to my toys over the winter, but is there some knitted fashion accessory that is more spring-like? A shawl, or a headband perhaps?