Did I ever explain how Fuzzy Mitten got started? I used to work as a gardener, at a garden center. However, being in Canada, I had a few months off over the winter. I was bored, so I started knitting little toys just for fun, and to use up bits of yarn I'd found. Each toy had it's own character, and it was very satisfying to see how many variations I could make on one basic shape. The clothes were a big part of the fun too. I'd only been knitting for a couple years, and hadn't tackled anything like clothes for myself. Tiny toy outfits were a great way to experiment with garment shapes, stitches, and yarn types.
A friend suggested I try selling the toys on Etsy, since they were just sitting around my apartment. It seemed like an interesting idea, and setting everything up, while challenging for someone who wasn't really internet savvy, was also a good use of spare time. (If you're curious about my shop name, you can read about it here). Within a couple weeks of listing my toys, knitters found them, and started asking for patterns. I was quite hesitant at first, because I didn't consider myself an experienced knitter, and certainly not qualified to be a designer.
But the interest was clear, and growing, so I thought I would try. I wrote out the instructions for all those first toys I had made: a polar bear, a squirrel, a tabby cat, a puppy, a lamb, and many others. The patterns were rough, and I needed help with a lot of things, but they were popular! By the middle of the next summer, I was so busy designing and running my Etsy shop, I realized I would have to cut back the hours at my regular gardening job if I wanted to keep Fuzzy Mitten going.
It hasn't always been an easy or smooth journey since that day, but I don't regret giving my business the chance to grow, and giving myself the chance to grow and change along with it. I've been given some great opportunities, met a lot of lovely knitters, and overall had a wonderful time designing cute toys for others to knit.
Now, as a treat for reading all of that, here is some lovely news: I'm having a sale in my Etsy shop and my Ravelry shop to celebrate it's 7th anniversary!
EDIT: The coupon code I'd posted earlier for Etsy was causing problems, so I've simply reduced the prices of all the items. I hope you enjoy trying some new patterns, or giving them as gifts to fellow knitters!
In my Ravlery shop, you'll get 20% off when you check-out.