Sunday, January 10, 2010

A New Direction for Hip-Threads

I have been thinking a lot about lately, and what sort of direction I want to take the website in. While I love making patchwork clothing, it doesn't sell as well as it used to and its time to make a change. (don't worry, I am not stopping patchwork forever, and will always take custom orders).
My friend Laura gave me a good piece of advise about a month ago that I have been thinking about constantly. "You have to find your niche" and then another piece of advise from my father given years ago, "make a decision and stick with it". Taking those together, my new mantra is; "Find your niche and stick with it". So what does that mean? I love to blog about hiking, sew
patchwork, make cute accessories, knit, recycle vintage clothing, making soap, candles, etc, etc, how do I tie all that together and create my niche; and what do I eliminate in the process?
While I don't have my answer completely yet, I finally figured out the direction I'd like to go in! I'd really like to create a line of clothing and accessories for the outdoorsy girl made from organic or eco-friendly materials, and tie that together with my hiking blog.

One dream that I have always had is to write a book, and lately my mind wanders to writing a hiking book. The angle of the book I am still not sure, hiking in Colorado, hiking the Front Range, hiking Colorado 14ers, outdoor hiking/camping in Colorado, a womans guide to hiking/camping, hiking peaks in Colorado, or hiking with your dog in Colorado? Lots of ideas, no "niche" there yet.
Another idea to tie into my blog, is to write pamphlets for hikes which have little or no
information on them, and sell them on my blog for $1-2. It would include a printable map with photos or directions, plus camping in the area around the hike, etc. Another idea from my brilliant and very successful entrepreneur friend Laura.
While I have been pondering all of these ideas lately, I stumbled across the TV show called Sharks a couple of nights ago. Entrepreneurs pitch their idea to zillionaires and they decide if
they want to invest in the company or not. The investors said a couple of things that really made sense. 1. You can't put all of your time into an idea without knowing if people will buy it, you have to test the market first. 2. You can't have your hands in too many pots, first start with one thing that does well, then branch out to other similar things.
Duh! Seems obvious, right? But maybe I haven't considered these things like I should have. Maybe my idea of outdoorsy girl eco-clothes isn't a winner? I guess I should test the market first, and find out if people would buy an eco-friendly line of hiking and outdoorsy gear, and accessories. I'd love to hear some feedback from all of *you*.
I also consider selling all of these cute accessories you see at Farmers Markets in Denver this summer, but since I haven't sold very many online yet, maybe this is a dud idea, I don't know? But I am excited to take the chance on it, and give it a shot.
Any comments, suggestions, ideas, are *much* appreciated.


  1. I think an eco outdoorsy line of clothing is a great idea. I know I love REI's line of eco clothes and it is the future! I have been toying around with the idea of carrying this line of clothing
    Maybe similar to what you are thinking of doing? I also think going to farmer's markets and the like is a great idea! People are more willing to buy in person! Good luck with your adventure and keep us updated!!

  2. Hi Jenn, It is great to hear your story and it makes me happy to hear about how I inspired you too! Feedback is definitely important. You might also email your mailing list and ask them what they think!


  3. Jennifer (Rainey) MasonJanuary 10, 2010 at 8:05 AM

    Suzy, yes, kind of like that style. But I would like to make them one of a kind in a small way maybe with a removable applique pin or something. Thanks for the link, it makes me think I should research this more to make sure that I am not copying another idea. lol.
    Laura, I'm glad you read the post, I was just about to email you that I had mentioned you a few times. Thanks!