Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Bearded Owl Crochet

Bearded Owl Crochet Earrings

A new and incredibly adorable shop has opened up on Etsy, and I'm so thrilled that I get to tell you about it. It's called Bearded Owl Crochet, and it's owned by my good friend,  Kim.

About a year ago, Kim started crocheting, and she hasn't stopped since.  Her shop is filled to the brim with unique and beautiful items.  Some of my favorites are her earrings and cowls, but she's got everything from coffee cup cozies to coasters.  I'm a big fan of Kim's shop, and I asked her to stop by to tell us a little more about it.

Bearded Owl Crochet Coffee Cup Cozy
You have some really wonderful pieces, and they are so unique.  Which ones are you’re your favorite to crochet?
     My favorites evolve as I learn new patterns or need a break from making older ones for a while.  Right now, I'd say the earrings are quite fun to make since the possibilities are endless; one small change to the pattern can make a totally different look!  I am also loving the cowls for fall.  I use a roving yarn for those so they are super soft and it has been fun playing with different stitch patterns for different textures.  

Bearded Owl Crochet Earrings
Where do you gather inspiration for your pieces?
      I am an avid Pinterest user and find a lot of inspiration from other talented crafters there!  I am always excited to find folks willing to share great patterns for free.  It's an easy way to learn some basic shapes and techniques and then build on those to make your very own original pieces.  
Do you have a favorite spot to cozy up in and crochet?
     Generally, I crochet at home, in my bedroom near my yarn stash but I have been known to bring my crochet bag with a few on-going projects inside pretty much everywhere I go in case I get a free moment or two.  My friends have given me grief a few times over crocheting at bars while watching football!
You knit as well.  How would you compare it to crochet?  Do you prefer one over the other?
     I do!  I used to knit years ago and I never really excelled past square objects (pot holders, scarves, etc.).  Once I learned to crochet, I found it so much easier to do both rows and rounds, simpler to increase or decrease, and overall much faster to work up a completed piece.  The simplicity of using a ball of yarn and a single hook is very appealing to me.  My Mom knits and one of these days I'll have her re-teach me the basics... maybe after all I've learned through crochet, some of the knitting patterns and techniques will make much more sense!  
Tell us about your new Etsy store?  
     I'm so excited to have opened the Etsy store!  I really love to crochet so even if I don't have an occasion or a need for a gift for someone, I continue to try out patterns and make things so I ended up with a stash of cute things just sitting in a box under my bed.  With some encouragement from friends and family, I decided to try and make room for more experiments by selling some things in the Etsy store.  It has really been a fun escape from my every day job and a great creative outlet and learning experience.  Just going through the steps to open the store has been fun and challenging, having no background whatsoever in opening a business!  Choosing a name, designing a logo, determining pricing, and other logistics were actually a really fun part of the process.  Throughout this experience, I have said that even if I open the store and no one buys a thing, it won't really bother me since the process of setting it all up has been so much fun!  After a few sales, I've had even more fun figuring out packaging, etc.  An aspect of the store of which i am really proud is the 100% recycled, recyclable, or degradable packaging I use to ship my products.  It's important to me to be conscious of waste production and to have a small environmental footprint in this endeavor!
What kinds of awesome things can we find there?
     In the store right now, you can find housewares like coaster sets, mug cozies, and coffee cup sleeves for those cups on the go.  Also, in the jewelry section there are three styles of earrings in a variety of colors.  I'm working on several more to add in the coming weeks.  The owls are one of my favorite items; the color combinations are fun to come up with and they make an adorable addition to any decor!  I also recently added the first of a collection of cute baskets.  For the fall and winter season, I recently added the first few items to the "Hats, scarves, and cowls" section of the store.  More beanies, cowls and scarves are in the works so folks should keep checking back or "Like" us on Facebook ( to keep up to date on new items added to the store! There is a "Seasonal Items" section where you can find an adorable pumpkin shaped trick or treat bag, with more seasonal items on the way.  I have so many more patterns in my stash to work up and add to the store including necklaces, bracelets, baby booties, more storage baskets, and so many others!  

Bearded Owl Crochet Owls
Tell us a little about the materials you use.
    Whenever possible, I really love to use yarn made of natural materials including things like wool, alpaca, bamboo, cotton, and even banana fiber.  I have found a few yarns that I love to work with that are at least in part made of synthetic material so I made the decision not to limit myself to just natural yarns. The synthetic material is sometimes more affordable, allowing me to pass the savings onto my customer, and also can be easier to care for.  If I can find natural alternatives to those synthetic yarns and still make a product that is affordable for the customer, I'm all for it!  I make an effort to describe the materials used in all my product descriptions so consumers can make informed purchases. 

Bearded Owl Crochet Fall Cowl
 It seems like you are always making things for your niece and nephew.  What are some of your favorite things you’ve made for them?
     I think my all time favorite has to be the bearded beanie I made for my nephew when he was just about 4 months old.  It was one of the first few things I learned to crochet successfully and my sister and I never laughed so hard as when we tried it on him for the first time.  He wore it like a champ for about three minutes :).  For my niece, I made a small mesh bag or purse in multi-colors with a big yellow flower on it.  My sister sent me a photo a few days later of my niece sitting on the floor watching a show and clutching her purse with a few toys inside.  Knowing she loves it is the best feeling ever!  I've also made for the kiddos some Easter baskets and eggs and recently the pumpkin shaped trick or treat bag that is also available in the seasonal section of the Etsy store.

Bearded Owl Crochet Beard Hats

Bearded Owl Crochet Baskets

What a talented lady!!  Get a head start on your Holiday shopping and visit the Bearded Owl Crochet at  Kim's unique items make perfect gifts.

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