Thursday, October 31, 2013

7 years!

November 6 will mark the seventh anniversary of Fuzzy Mitten! I'm not sure how it's all lasted this long, but I'm so grateful that so many people enjoy my patterns - enough to keep me going longer than I ever expected, and hopefully for a few more years to come!

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.


French Nanny said...

Great - but I can't make that code work...


Barbara Prime said...

I've had someone else with the same problem. From what I've been reading on the help pages, something was recently changed on the check-out page that may be the problem. Please try again, and make sure you're entering the code in the "Coupon code" box, and not the "Gift Card" box. If anyone else has the same problem, I will simply reduce the list prices in my shop later today.

Anonymous said...

Happy Anniversary! And thanks for the discount on your patterns! I love your toys and I've purchased a few today!

Laura from beautiful West Michigan

IndigoMuse said...

I didn't even know about the anniversary discount until I received the sweet gift when I bought your squirrel pattern. Thank you and congrats on 7 yrs of designing beautiful, happy-making toys :)

Karen said...

Congratulations on a very important milestone!!

Anonymous said...

It's been a journey we have taken together. You have taught me a lot, not just about knitting toys, but life itself. Let's hope we continue to grow together for many years to come. Priceless! Thank you for that. All the best to you and yours.


bluettine said...

Very nice !

Alexis said...

I've been a fan of your cute toys for a long time now. Congratulations on 7 years.

Mary said...

lovely !!!
a game on my blog if you fancy it !