Hello hello hello! (any R P Drag Race fans up in here??)
I hope you’ve had a fab week, and are looking forward to a cosy Valentine’s weekend in!
Have you seen our V Day edit? Have a read here!)
It is time to get stuck into our first Creative Q&A of Feb, and this week we are featuring suuuper talented Amy – designer, crochet whizz and the brains behind The Cotton Shop.
Home of their best selling ‘Sensory Octopus’ – think charming curly tentacles and an assortment of comforting, soft colours – and so many other gorgeous organic cotton keepsake items!
So I will allow lovely Amy to introduce herself!
AMY: I’m Amy, I’m 29 and I live in Brighton with my boyfriend and our 2 year old daughter Norah! I’ve always been creative, my nan taught me to knit when I was little and then my mum taught me to crochet! I got made redundant in 2018 when I was pregnant, so I was pretty strapped for cash and panicking so I started to try and sell the things I made. I started off at Christmas fairs and it was a total flop. So I made a little Insta page and it slowly took off.
JANEY: It is lovely to hear that your skills have been passed down to you through the generations, and that you are sharing your talents with us lot! What do you reckon was the first thing you ever crocheted?
A: The first things I crocheted were cushions but I never sold them, the first items I made for sale were the sensory octopuses which is what my shop is most well known for.
J: How lovely that your first products on sale are still such a key line for you!
What are the important factors you consider when designing and creating a new product?
A: When I’m designing new products it’s usually something I would want to buy for myself or a friend’s baby. I’ve got a very particular taste, it’s pretty Scandi inspired and neutral. I’ve also got to consider whether it will work as a crocheted piece, it’s function and what age it would be suitable for.
J: A whole lot to think about then, and you are right – I think it is important that they are things you would be attracted to buying yourself, because that is where the passion and belief in your own products will come from!
If you absolutely had to choose, what is your favourite item to crochet? (Big fans of the whales and radishes over here!)
A: Oooh my favourite things to make are probably the Moss Baskets, all of the fruit and veg are fun to make too. I love the sensory octopuses but, because I make so many, I get a bit sick of the tentacles!
J: I mean, 8 per item does seem like a crazy amount of stitches…!
And so apart from the ludicrous number of tentacles you’ve whipped up in your time as a business owner, would you say is your biggest achievement so far?
A: I would say my biggest achievement is hitting 10k followers on Instagram this year. I had no idea how my business would survive during the pandemic but it boomed, I feel incredibly lucky. I’ve also had some amazing collaboration opportunities which I can’t reveal just yet, but watch this space!
J: Well that sounds exciting, we’ll keep an eye out for that! And we’re so glad to hear that things are going well – 10k is a huuuuge achievement, and super well deserved too.
So we are totally and utterly in love with your beautiful muted colour palette, do you have a favourite combination of colours?
A: Haha yes I love mutual tones, I’m a sucker for browns and beige, and sage grey green colours, but also really rich blues and rusty orange!
J: That rusty orange is lush. Especially as part of those delightful rainbows – they are the perfect size for a snuggle, and I am in LOVE with the bobbles that make them so unique!
So we are entirely and wholly convinced – where and when can we get our hands on your work?
A: I make a large amount of stock all month and then release it on my website for sale as ready to buy items. I try to include as many colour options as possible. Maybe when circumstances change I will be able to accommodate custom orders or pre-orders again but it’s just a bit chaotic at the moment, at least this way I feel like I have a bit of control!
Amy is busy prepping for her next stock update on 1st March, so keep up to date with what is going to be available, alongside beautiful behind-the-scenes action, by following her on Insta @_thecottonshop .
Head over to the website – thecottonshopuk.com – for more information!
How dreamy is that colour palette?! We all know I am a bright & bold shade devotee, but The Cotton Sop’s range is enough to have me convinced that these subtle, natural tones are not to be overlooked!
I hope you enjoyed reading along about Amy’s crochet artistry, and are inspired to go and check out her pages!
And please do come back again from next Friday for another Creative Q & A! Have a fab week!