Tell us something interesting/unique about yourself!
I won the Hand Sewn Needlework Grand Champion prize at the Bendigo Agricultural Show in 2013. My Mum entered one of the 2 cross-stitch tapestries I had given her for her 70th birthday.
Write 5 adjectives to describe your products.
Boho, Relaxed, Easy Going, Textured, Trendy
Where else do you advertise/sell your work? (eg. social media, markets,...)
- Social media - I have facebook, instagram and pinterest accounts
- I've tried markets with little sucess. I live about an hour from Canberra and don't like spending every weekend away from my family, so I think my issue has been not choosing the 'right' markets... now I don't care :)
- In May 2017, two small yarn producers started displaying products made by me and selling the related patterns at markets. This is by far my preferred option as far as markets are concerned - I don't HAVE to attend, but people are still finding my patterns and are able to see and touch the results :)
- there are a lot of on-line places to sell crochet patterns and I'm slowly gaining a presence on a few of them; Ravelry and LoveKnitting both have thriving indie-designer communities and I'm working hard to sell on both sites.
- I have my own website (still not the way I want it, but it's getting there). All of my patterns are for sale there as well.
What has been the proudest moment of your journey so far?
There are 3 major milestones I've experienced in the past year:
#1 - I launched my very own, created and designed by me, website! Not as a means to get off Etsy completely, but as a platform that I can control - I LOVE it! :)
#2 - On May 18th 2017, I released a 10-piece cohesive product collection of crochet patterns, along with 5 kits. This project represented hundreds of hours of my time, and hundreds of dollars in photography and other investments, but how happy was I to be able to 'go live'?! The collection can be seen in my Etsy shop - it has it's own Section in Madeforyoubyfi.etsy.com - and/or you can see the whole thing laid out at madeforyoubyfi.com/luxurious-layers-collection/
#3 - Twice in the last couple of months, one of my patterns has made it into the top 5 of 'Hookin on Hump Day' - an international link party where people vote by clicking on their favourite thing in fiber arts. The link party is hosted by two of the market's biggest players 'Petals to Picots' and Moogly. The fact that I've made 'top 5', means that both these bloggers have had to notice me, and that's a big deal :)
What inspired you to create your business and how long have you been trading for?
My business started in 2013, and I opened my Etsy shop in April 2014. An individual lady ordered 10 pairs of slippers from me over 2 months, which gave me the push to start a 'business'... since then, I've tried a few different directions, but crocheting ladies' accessories and layers have become my passion.
3. When shopping for woolen goodies, what should a person look for in the item?
When you are shopping for knitwear, you should look for designs which are easy-to-wear. I prefer to create 'one size fits most' designs - a relaxed fit means that most body shapes are catered for.
The yarn composition (fibers blended together) is super important - there are exclusive/expensive fibers (like alpaca, llama, silk, mohair, merino) which have the capability of turning an 'ordinary' garment into something extra special, which will last a lifetime (or 2!) Many of these fibers are extremely soft, some have water resistant properties, but all add a level of luxury to scarves, hats, gloves etc.
4. Outside your business, what inspires you?
As a practicing Christian, I am involved in a community-centered church - being around the people and seeing their needs is always inspiring. I help run a weekly craft group - collaboration is something that happens naturally and I love it
I love music - I lead the singing at church most weekends. I love seeing the colours and shapes that God has put together in nature. The place I work is set in Australian bushland - there is always something inspiring just outside the window!