PlanetJune Craft Blog

Latest news and updates from June

shop update!

For the past few months, I’ve been working on a behind-the-scenes project to update the PlanetJune online store to improve your experience and to streamline future updates. This was a massive project: I first built the shop in 2009, and the software and plugins I use have been upgraded multiple times since then, leaving me with thousands of messy files of patched and re-patched code.

I decided that the only way to clean things up was to start again from scratch, so I’ve rebuilt the entire shop using the latest codebase, and incorporated all the hundreds of customizations I’ve coded and built in over the years, from pay-what-you-want donationware to the complete list of all the patterns you’ve ever purchased (so you never accidentally buy anything twice or have to hunt through old orders to find a particular pattern).

Most of the changes are technical so you won’t see any differences, but I’ve made a few upgrades that you’ll be able to appreciate:

Product Photos

This is the big change! Some of my pattern photos are older than some of my customers, and both my equipment and my photography and image-editing skills have improved in the past 18 years! Here’s a summary of the improvements you’ll see:

RE-EDITED PHOTOS: I’ve reprocessed my older photos to be brighter, clearer and better colour balanced.

PlanetJune shop update: brighter and colour-balanced photos The AmiDogs were the worst offenders – with my old monitor I couldn’t tell that the sky sometimes looked purple or grey! Now they all match 🙂

CLEARER CATEGORIES: All the categories on the main page are larger and clearer and now look like ‘cards’ with rounded borders.

PlanetJune shop update: larger and clearer category images Pick a card, any card…

SQUARE LISTINGS: All the main product photos are larger and now have matching square dimensions, so they’re easier to view and browse through.

PlanetJune shop update: all main images are now square Some images were wide and short, some were tall and narrow – it’s so much cleaner now they’re all squares!

For the full effect, click through to the All Products page – keep scrolling, and scrolling, and scrolling…

Clearer Links

I’ve added friendly URLs so you know what you’re looking at, for example:

OLD: /index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=19&products_id=403

NEW: /temperature-snake-amigurumi-crochet-pattern-and-workbook-p-403.html

Having the pattern name in the link is much more helpful than the previous words-and-numbers soup. (And the old links all still work too, if you have any of them saved.)

Custom Gift Certificates

PlanetJune custom value gift certificate

I’ve added a custom value PlanetJune gift certificate, so now you can send a gift certificate for any dollar (and cent!) amount you want.

This is an easier way to gift specific patterns to someone – you can just send them a custom gift certificate for the exact amount, with a note telling them what you’d like them to spend it on! (See the Gift Certificate FAQ for instructions.)


A Fresh Start

The internet is always changing, and it takes work to keep up with the latest coding standards and security updates. I’ve been patching and updating my old shop code since 2009, and starting from scratch for this update was the best way to make sure I didn’t carry any problems forward. This was a huge undertaking (with literally thousands of files of code to comb through) but it’s very satisfying to know that this project is complete. Now that my shop has been refreshed inside and out, it looks much cleaner, and it’ll be much easier to keep it maintained and to make more improvements in future.

And, you know what, seeing all my patterns displayed nicely together on the All Products page lets me see what I’ve accomplished in a way I haven’t really been able to before. I’ve designed hundreds of patterns over the past 18 years, and I’m happy to stand behind all of them – that’s quite an accomplishment, isn’t it? Seeing them all together gives me fresh inspiration to keep adding to the PlanetJune pattern collection.

Please take a look around the new and improved PlanetJune shop – I hope you’ll find more treasures to enjoy now they’re easier to see and appreciate! And I’d love to hear your thoughts on the updates and what else you’d like to see in future improvements, so feel free to leave a comment or send me a message.

11 Comments »

  1. MJ said

    I love the changes! And I don’t usually like change … LoL.
    You have done a fantabulous job with the new pages and photos and descriptions and … and … ALL of it!!
    I surely appreciate all your hard work to make shopping with you easier and more enjoyable! Thank you so much!

    • June said

      Thank you, MJ – I’m so glad you like the changes!

  2. Doug said

    Wow, the changes look great! And with a modern code base hopefully keeping up to date and making future changes will be a bit easier too.
    Amazing amount of work, and it shows!

    • June said

      Fingers crossed, that’s the plan! I’ve kept very detailed notes of all my customizations this time around, so that should also make things much easier going forward – I know exactly which files I’ve modified, and why. (And thank you!)

  3. SandyG said

    June, this is a work of art, just beautiful! I have been with your website almost since you started it, and I also worked long ago, when HTML was relatively simple, maintaining websites for the foreign language departments at the University of Colorado at Boulder, and I know just what you mean about how everything changes. I started on the “All Products” page and clicked on “All” and as you said, just scrolled and scrolled … Your unbounded imagination and skill and creativity are wondrous to behold. All the best to you in everything that comes next!

    • June said

      Thank you so much, Sandy – I appreciate all your support!

  4. David Grindel said

    June (wearing coder hat), you have been very busy. The changes you made look great! I know what you mean about change. When I used to write code at work using different languages like Perl, Python, Rexx and some C for faster turn-around time. They ALL changed. I’ll quote one of my buddies “The only thing that does not change is change.” I use to hear that quote while I was in the middle of a BIG change.

    What about Crochet does it change much? I know you are always finding new, better,
    and faster ways to do crochet stitches, plus add new design. I guess I’m saying in crochet a SC will always be a SC, a DC will always be a DC — but is that true?
    Hope you have some time for your spring time planting.

    Thanks for keeping up with the changes.

    • June said

      Thanks David! Crochet doesn’t really change – you can make technique improvements, but a stitch is a stitch: I’d say a sc will always be a sc – while you can definitely make sc in different ways, the result is not the standard stitch any more (just like an invdec is often a better alternative to a standard sc2tog decrease, but it’s not a sc2tog and has to be specified in the pattern as an invdec!)

      Spring planting has been frustrating: I’ve had to restart all my beans and zucchini thanks to hungry slugs and woodlice, but I’m hoping to be enjoying fresh garden tomatoes and veggies next month…

  5. Springchiknot said

    Wow what an enormous undertaking you did…that’s wonderful that you know how to do all that technical stuff!! Looking forward to going to you new site….it’s been so long since I first found you and I don’t remember what you taught me…I saved old video tutorials and projects of yours and they are in a mailbox on my iPhone…I’m into Dolls for babies right now….did the “Sleepyhead Doll” last year for my two 1-yr old great granddaughters….. like Amigurumi animals too….I used to do only Blankets…..I’ll have to look at your tutorials to see what you have…I don’t like reading patterns…well, good luck and ty….🥰👵🏻

    • June said

      Thank you so much! It’s hard work wearing all the hats in my business, but at least it keeps the costs down when I can do everything myself…

      If you don’t like to read patterns, take a look at my shawls and blanket patterns: they all have charted stitch diagrams as well as written ones, so you can crochet them directly from the chart and avoid the written instructions if you prefer that!

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