Hey! It's Julia from The Kotton Kaboodle.
Today I wanted to write a slightly different post, explaining why I do what I do and why I started in the first place.
So as you may know, I am a big fan of the needle art of crocheting. My main passion is crocheting stuffed animals, also known as "amigurumi" (the Japanese art of knitting or crocheting small, stuffed yarn creatures). How I started to crochet is actually a pretty funny story.
A few years ago, my best friend taught herself how to crochet from YouTube tutorials. When I saw all of the amazing things she was making, I honestly got jealous of her impressive talent. So one day, we were playing the game "Truth or Dare" together. I dared her to teach me how to crochet! My friend willingly took on the challenge of teaching me, and I was so excited... but I wasn't very good at it at first. In 5 minutes, I would have a triangle made out of yarn! But little by little I grew more experienced, and with help from YouTube tutorials, I was able to make a small swatch. I was very proud of myself!
I practiced crocheting in rows and making scarves, wraps, and hats, but I eventually got bored. Then my friend introduced me to the wonderful world of amigurumi!
I made small stuffed animals for a while and then my dad suggested that I sell some in person to people I know. When I realized I was getting better and I could crochet larger stuffed animals, I searched for good patterns.
I found this amazing website called "Jess Huff". The designer of the patterns shared several stuffed animal patterns that helped me jumpstart my business.
Back in 2019, a wolf was the first animal I made from this website. I had shared with my school that I had started to crochet, and a kid from my class wanted me to make a wolf; I was very pleased with how it turned out. My love for crocheting Jess Huff stuffed animals increased and I decided to sell my creations on Etsy!
Why sell on Etsy?
When I first started my business, I sold in person to people I knew. I liked keeping track of all my sales and it was hard, because sometimes I would forget to write it down. I found that Etsy was a very helpful instrument that helped me keep track of sales and funds, and add new stuffed animals to my inventory.
As I gained more experience in crocheting amigurumi, I began to modify Jess Huff patterns and create my own stuffed animals using the pattern as a basic foundation.
This puppy was the most complex modified animal I have made so far. I created the ears, snout, collar, tail, and the paws totally from scratch, and used the patterns for the head and body from Jess Huff so the animal keeps the same style as the rest of the animals.
I've even created my own patterns from scratch like a frog, a dumbbell keychain, and my best-selling pattern/stuffed animal, Baby the Bee!
I have been selling on Etsy since September 2019, and I'm so thankful to the people who have taken a chance on me and my small business and ordered from me!
I am also thankful to my friends and family who have supported me on my crocheting journey!
This brings me to my main point. Why crochet?
I made a few "Baby Yoda Inspired" crochet stuffed animals for a friend of mine's grandchildren as a present for Easter. My friend told me that when the packages arrived, the grandchildren immediately dropped their egg hunt and ripped open the packages. They were ecstatic at the sight of these stuffed animals! As I heard this story, it brought me close to tears. Through my handiwork, I had brought overwhelming joy to a family and their children. It motivated me to keep crocheting even when business is slow.
My mission as I continue to crochet and sell is to give joy and spread smiles to people through my handmade items!