My coworkers are beginning to break out their red knit sweaters, so I know it must be almost “that” time of year.
So in that spirit, for this week’s writing critique let’s have a look at a sweet pair of holiday ornaments crafted by Harriet, at That Is So Cute.
While the name of her shop is certainly well reflected in these little hand-felted gifts, I think Harriet could do a better job selling them through her description. It seems to lack focus and repeat information, without really tugging at the heartstrings (or my wallet).
Let’s take a look:
Love birds? How about a pair of felted birdhouses?
I have knitted up a pair of red wool birdhouse ornaments. One roof is a winter white while the other roof is red and “thatched” with a white fun fur. They were machine felted and air dried. Once dried, I needle felted the hole and added the twig perch. They are stuffed with fiberfill.
One of these sweet birdhouses has a thatched roof (made with cream fun fur).
They are finished with coordinating ribbon that says “I Love You” to hang from.
The last picture is before they were felted!
They are about 4″ tall and about 2.5″ wide at the widest.
The first thing that jumped out at me reading this description was the “lede” (what we in the newspaper biz call the opening line). Harriet begins with two questions that left me feeling a little… eh. Maybe it’s a reporting background, but I shy away from questions in writing in general. Unless it’s a well-laid query or used as a clever rhetorical tool, the question mark can leave readers…well, wondering.
Seeing as the birdhouses are small and adorable, and they’re obviously meant as a holiday gift, I think I would open with something a little sweet and a little corny. Shoppers are probably already thinking “Awwww” when they see the ornaments, so I would push that feeling.
Harriet could also use to read through this description a second time and spot the repeat information. We can already see the “thatching” in the pictures, so there’s no need for us to read about it twice.
I’m also going to rearrange her wording just a little bit throughout. Some of her lines contain perfectly good information, but make for an awkward read. In particular, I’m concerned about “They are finished with coordinating ribbon that says “I Love You” to hang from.” I’m not the type to slap anyone on the knuckles for ending a sentence in a proposition (sometimes it just sounds right), but in this case there is an easier, more readable way to say it.
Here we go:
Winter can be a tough time for little birdies!
Take a moment to remember your feathered friends this season by celebrating with these adorable, hand-felted wool ornaments.
One sports a winter-white roof, while the other is “thatched” with a creamy fun fur. Both were hand-knit before being machine felted, air dried and stuffed with fiberfill.
I finished them off by needle felting the doorway and adding a little twig perch!
Both hang from sweet “I love you” ribbons. They measure about 4″ tall and about 2.5″ at the widest.
The last picture was taken before the knit pieces were felted.
Good luck and many happy sales to Harriet!
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