Why I don’t sell finished crochet items

selling finished crochet items and amigurumi blog post titleSince releasing Harry the Moustache I have received a couple of comments from people mentioning that he would do well as a stuffed animal on Etsy or even wholesale in stores.  These comments made me think more about whether I want to go that route or not – but in the end I decided to stick with my original plan and not sell finished stuffed animals.

From the get go I knew I wanted to design patterns and not sell already completed items.  I had been listening to podcasts about other designers who often started off selling their finished crocheted projects, but then switched to only selling patterns.  The reason for this change?  Most often it was because they got tired of making the same thing over and over again. When I crochet, I like making one item from a pattern and then move on and try a completely different one, a pattern from which I can learn something new  – and I knew I would be the same with my designs.  While I love my patterns and will be making more stuffed animals from them for friends and family, I do not want to make a ton of Harry’s all the time!

Another reason people often switch to designing patterns is that once the pattern is out there, you can make multiple sales on that one pattern without having to do much else (besides provide customer support).  Yes, there is a lot more work that goes into designing a pattern than crocheting a finished stuffed animal, but in the end I think it is more efficient to make the pattern.

While these reasons are great and a large part of why I don’t make finished projects, there is another reason I am hesitant to crochet and sell stuffed animals: I want my patterns to inspire people to pick up a hook and learn how to crochet themselves, not take out their wallet to buy what I have already made. I want people to experience making a cute plush themselves, seeing how their creation comes to life when the face is complete, and then either admiring their work within their home, or giving it to someone else as a gift knowing they had made it themselves.  I think anyone can learn to crochet, and if you are making something you think is adorable, it makes it that much easier and more fun!

I am not saying that you should never buy handmade goods, because I buy them myself, but I think in this case, with these amigurumi in particular, making one yourself isn’t that tricky if you really want one.  There isn’t any crazy equipment or artistic skill needed, just a hook, yarn, stuffing and a bit of time. As my husband likes to say, “you can make that“, and I want others to be inspired to make things, too!

I try very hard to make my patterns uncomplicated and easy to follow so that no one is frustrated with crocheting their amigurumi.  I want people to truly enjoy the experience.  It is my hope that people won’t give up when making their animal (or moustache) because they are confused or maybe don’t like assembling and attaching all the pieces.   I want people to enjoy the experience from beginning to end – so if you don’t, let me know, because I want to help!

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Until next time,


Handmade goods shopping spree


Last weekend I travelled to Toronto to shop!  Ok, I also visited with family and friends, but I decided to go that specific weekend because the spring One of A Kind Show was on.  I had heard about this show many times and even have items from past shows that people have given to me as gifts, but I had never gone myself and was dying to.

The One of a Kind Show is a big event that occurs twice a year in Toronto, in both the spring and winter (right before Christmas).  It showcases hundreds of handmade goods which you can buy right from the artist who made them. Basically, it is a huge room with rows of vendors selling their beautifully crafted handmade products – heaven!   My friend and I managed to spend 6 hours there!

It was my brother’s birthday coming up so I knew I needed to find something for him. In the end I bought a nifty bow tie from VIVID Clothing Toronto.  I don’t have a picture of it because I already gave it to him, but you can check out their etsy shop.  They had so many different patterns it was hard to decide, but I bought a bow that was reversible, so it had two different patterns in one! My brother now has to learn how to tie a bow, but that is what youtube is for.

For some reason I was really into the pottery.  I was on the look out for a yarn bowl, and while I didn’t find one I liked, I did buy a bowl with a yarn ball inside! It was handmade by Greg Voisin – he both sculpted the bowl and hand painted the little yarn ball.  It is so cute!  I love the teal and cream colours, which is seen consistently throughout his work.  I am going to use it to put my little doodads in while I crochet, like stitch markers and needles (which I tend to place somewhere randomly and then lose…).

Pottery by Greg VoisinMy next piece of pottery that I purchased was a shark mug.  It is made by the Montreal artist Wai-Yant Li of Creations Li and it is adorable.  I had to go back to the booth several times because I wanted to buy everything and couldn’t decide. Wai-Yant also makes items that look like blow fish, squid and monsters, all with a cute face.  My mug is called ‘Chomps Shark Mug’ and you can find it on the Creations Li website.  Can’t wait to make some tea in this guy.

Pottery by Creation LiPottery by Creation LiLastly, I bought an embroidery kit by kiriki press to make my very own little stuffed raccoon.  I sometimes embroider noses and eyes on my crochet amigurumi, but my technique, if you can call it that, is not the greatest.  I am hoping this kit will teach me some mad embroidery skills that I can then transfer to my amigurumi – plus I get a super cute raccoon!  The kit is complete with a hoop, crane scissors (which I love!), needles, an instruction book of stitches, the raccoon pattern and fabric, and stuffing.  I will likely write another post exclusively on this kit once I get around to making it, so stay tuned.

kiriki press embroidery kitAll in all it was a fun weekend with shopping, friends and family, plus I got to see all those amazing artists selling their handmade goods – very inspirational!

Don’t forget to sign up for my amigurumi newsletter to receive emails filled with ami fun. You can also follow me on facebook, twitter, instagram, and pinterest to keep up to date on all things hookabee.

Until next time,