Usually Saturdays are my blog post-days but today is different as Gynka Knitwear turned 1 year old exactly today! Which means, I created my Instagram account a year ago 🙂 .
I had Gynka Manufaktúra before, where I shared my WIPs but I wanted a different account for my own designs. It became much more successful and had more followers and likes in quite a short amount of time.
A whole lot of things happened this year… it seems it was much longer than a single year and yet it was gone so fast. I have many achievements to be proud of and I feel I have learnt many things. Not just as a knitter but as a person as well. I don’t want you to be bored of my knitting successes, I listed them a few posts back in my end-of-year summary, I won’t repeat myself. I would rather write about my personal improvements.
The most important lesson I learnt from this past year as a person was to handle critics and offences (I am thinking about those nasty nay-sayers and not the constructive ones. I like the constructive kind, which I can improve from). I always had a problem with showing up. That is why it was a really hard decision for me to step out of the crowd and show my art to others. The critics are always there watching every move. So I didn’t move for a long time.
But being locked in a house alone with two little babies made me want to have some attention. I could be the mom posting cute pictures of the kids all day to every social media sites possible but that is not really me. It’s the kids. It was me, who wanted that attention. And I wanted it really bad. So I got it. And very soon I got my @ss kicked for it. My first reaction was I must have done something wrong. The second was disappointment and anger, and the third was: “OK, I should do something about this issue before it starts influencing my creativity”. So I started searching for motivation.
What I found was a speech of Theodore Roosevelt, held in 1910 (the exact day was April 23 which is actually my birthday – so this must be meaning something 😉 ). I share it with you because I know there are plenty of makers struggling with the same thoughts as I was. I hope it helps putting things back into place, like it did for me. It is called The Man In The Arena:
“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.”
OK, so here am I in the arena, showing up. My face is marred by dust and sweat and blood. Who am I? I am an enterpreneur. And so here is another one of my favourite motivations for all of you, my maker friends, an excerpt of Common Sense by Thomas Paine:
“I do not choose to be a common man.
It is my right to be uncommon … if I can.
I seek opportunity … not security.
I do not wish to be a kept citizen,
Humbled and dulled by having the State look after me.
I want to take the calculated risk,
To dream and to build. To fail and to succeed.
I refuse to barter incentive for a dole;
I prefer the challenges of life to the guaranteed existence;
The thrill of fulfillment to the stale calm of Utopia.
I will not trade freedom for beneficence
Nor my dignity for a handout
I will never cower before any master
Nor bend to any threat.
It is my heritage to stand erect, proud and unafraid;
To think and act for myself,
To enjoy the benefit of my creations
And to face the world boldly and say:
This, with God’s help, I have done.
All this is what it means to be an Entrepreneur.”
Conclusion: I have the creativity in me. I have the power to make new things, to transform yarn into a whole new piece of art that hadn’t existed before. But I am human and I make mistakes. And I am really proud of this, too. Should I care about the ill will of those people who doesn’t even know how to knit? NO. It is that simple. Learn to design a knitting pattern and knit it up yourself, otherwise I am in no way interested in your feedback. This was the lesson of 2017.
And this, my dear friends, is a H.U.G.E. lesson! Life is much more easier, more beautiful and I can use my spare positive energies for creating. I am pretty sure the year ahead will be even more prosperous than 2017 was.
So let’s celebrate! I am hosting a giveaway on Instagram: the winner receives any 3 digital copies of knitting patterns of The Enchanted Forest Collection! Anyone can enter the giveaway until midnight (January 28, 2018). For further details please check my Instagram account: (link).
If you missed the giveaway, do not worry, all patterns in my Ravelry Pattern Store are on sale until Sunday February 4, 2018! To shop GK patterns, go to: (link).
Aaaaand, if you happened to miss my Birthday Pattern Sale on Ravelry, too, I still have something for you 🙂 : grab your 15% discount on your first GK digital download by joining Gynka Knitwear U-Knit Club here: (link)! This way I can guarantee, you will never miss a GK Pattern Sale any more! 😉
KNIT. WEAR. SHINE.