Sunday Interview: HandKnitsByMelissa

December 12, 2010 at 7:55 am (Etsy, Etsy D-Listers)

1. How’d you get started on Etsy?
I started teaching a few good friends to knit over the summer. One of them told me about Etsy, I’d never heard of it before. When she saw my work she really encouraged me to get it online. I spent a few months thinking about if I would be able to do it and now here I am.

2. What was your inspiration for your shop?

My Knitting and My Disease. I have been knitting for almost seven years and It’s been a great inspiration in my life. I got sick at 17 and it took four and a half years to be diagnosed with Lyme Disease. I live with my illness everyday and I have to be very careful with the choices I make because of it.

3. What’s your favorite shop item and why?

It’s a tie between the Jay Blue Beaded Wrist Warmers and the Framed Diamond Lace Scarf. The Wristers (as I affectionately call them) are my favorite thing that I make. I have never seen anything else like them and the Jay Blue ones are in my favorite design. The scarf is done in my favorite color and it is also one of my favorite designs.

4. How do you unwind when you’re not creating?

With my toy poodle Sparky, He makes each day a new adventure. I also love to read and watch classic films on TCM.


5. What’s your favorite kind of cupcake?

I love Red Velvet with Cream Cheese Frosting. Chocolate is too rich for me so red velvet is perfect it’s just that hint of chocolate with the cream cheese frosting to help tone it down.

6. What was your worst job?

I got sick at 17 so I have yet to have a real job. Before I got sick though I did babysit and help out with a friend of the family’s business, but I loved all of those jobs.

7. What’s your favorite cartoon as a kid? As an adult, if you stumble upon it while channel surfing now would you stop & watch?

I loved Mr. Rodger’s Neighborhood it’s not really a cartoon though. But yes I would absolutely watch it right now, and have watched it by myself as an adult.

8. What’s your fantasy job?

Writing novels and being paid to do so.

9. Do you have a secret guilty pleasure?

Teen Aged Sci-Fi Novels. I have loved these since I was 11 and probably will all my life. I have just started reading The House of Night Series by P.C. and Kristin Cast. And of course, Hallmark movies, but that’s another story. . . .

10. List 3 things you are so obsessed with it is torture to ever say no to.

My dog Sparky, Desserts, and Classic Films. If a Bette Davis film pops on you’ll find me in front of it with a bowl of ice cream in my hand and my favorite doggy by my side.

11. List 3 of your favorite Etsy shops.

Beadmask , CORDAVALERA, and StudioCatB I love beadmask’s leather work, cordavalera’s felted flowers, and studiocatb’s purses. These are all things I admire and wish I could make myself, but I simply am not skilled enough in those arena’s to do so. However, I could throw down with some knitting needles in one hand and a ball of yarn in the other.


12. Do you have a favorite author? When you read, do you use a proper bookmark, bend the page, or grab anything handy to mark your place?

My favorite author is tied between Jane Austen, and Agatha Christie. I tell you British authors are awesome, must be something in their tea. I tend toward bookmarks but I have been known on occasion to grab anything handy. I never fold down corners or write in books. I always hate when I find library books that this has been done to, it’s been a pet peeve of mine for as long as I can remember.

13. If money was no object and you can live wherever you want, where would that be?

On an Orchard, with a giant farm house and a great big organic vegetable gardens. With a big brightly lit sunroom where I can write and knit all day long. Oh, it’s nice to dream. : )

14. What is your best childhood memory?

Camping with my family. Every Summer of my childhood, we would spend two weeks camping in the woods or at the coast of Oregon and Washington. These are my vary favorite memories of my whole life.

15. How would you describe your work style?

I try to work on my knitting every day. It’s very difficult with my disease though, there have been times in the past when I haven’t been able to work for up to a three month stretch at a time. I am getting better now though so, I am doing my very best to knit every single day even if only for a few hours.

16. If you could choose any one super power, what would it be and why?

The ability to heal myself and others. I would love to put this disease behind me and to also heal anyone else that is suffering. As it stands now if I got well enough I would love to become a nurse but I just don’t have the stomach for it. I am very glad that there are people like my mom that do.

17. Who are your heroes?

My Paternal Grandmother, and My Mom. My grandmother died from rheumatoid arthritis when I was 9. I loved her so much. Unfortunately I don’t have any memories of her from before her illness got really bad, but I do remember what a good and loving person she was. And if I can live my life in any resemblance of hers I know that I’ve done all need. My Mom is so much more than that. She started going to nursing school when I started kindergarten, and worked hard to become the nurse she is. She was valedictorian of her class. Then she became an intensive care nurse. She works so hard to take care of others and is really good at it. She has been so much more than a mom to me she takes care of me everyday and she really is my best friend.


18. What would you do if you won the lottery?

Give the money to my parents so they could stop working and together we could finish our house and live out our dreams.

19. What was the last movie you watched? Was it good?

Precious, It was excellent. So very very sad. Definitely a movie to see but I don’t think I could sit through it again. Life affirming in it’s own way though.

20. If you knew what you know now, when you first opened your store, what would you do differently?

Well, I just opened my store a month ago, but the one big lesson I’ve learned is that I should have waited until I had more things made. It seems to me the more things in your shop the more willing people are to buy from you. I am working hard though at coming up with new ideas and making new things. Keep coming back to my shop if you like my work because I should have some more items listed in about  a month.


You can find HandKnitsByMelissa here:



  1. cindylouwho2 said,

    Great feature! Thanks for letting us learn more about Melissa

  2. Dee B. said,

    Nice article Melissa!

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