Welcome to our newest post installment, the Yarnpreneur™ Profile! In this weekly post, we will interview a yarnpreneur™ so you can learn more about them and their businesses.
Her Ravelry: www.ravelry.com/designers/lee-anne-sartori
Her Instagram: www.instagram.com/cococrochet_lee
JM: Tell us a bit about your business.
LS: My name is Lee, I’m the designer at CoCo Crochet Lee. My passion is crochet (although I knit as well) and specifically I love to design amigurumi. I have been designing for about 4 years, and enjoy creating whimsical patterns that bring a smile to people’s faces. Aside from designing my personal patterns, I also work for Happily Hooked Magazine, a magazine for crochet enthusiasts, running their social media and advertising department. I submit original designs to Happily Hooked on a regular basis, and find it very fun. On top of that I run a blog called Cactus and Cocoa with my Happily Hooked Magazine co-worker Emily Truman. We offer free patterns, tips, and engaging content. This forum is particularly fun for me because I am able to offer knitted patterns on top of my regular crochet patterns. It’s become a great creative outlet for Emily and I. You can find our blog at www.cactusandcocoa.com.
JM: Why did you start your business?
LS: I started CoCo Crochet Lee when my son was born. I wanted to make him adorable little hats and other crochet/knit things because I couldn’t find many cute things for little boys at the time. People started asking me for the things I was making for my son, so I began filling orders for friends and family. Eventually it sparked an interest in designing my own original patterns, specifically amigurumi, and I’ve been designing ever since!
JM: What is your favorite thing about being a yarnpreneur™?
LS: My favorite thing about being a Yarnpreneur is the creative outlet it provides. I went to University for Visual Arts and Communications, so art is a passion of mine. I love to design and get creative with different fibres and colors, and to have my designs enjoyed by others. It’s very rewarding!
JM: What is your least favorite thing about being a yarnpreneur™?
LS: My least favorite thing is probably the testing process for pattern design. I sometimes wish I could wave a magic wand that would allow my patterns to be perfect from the very start. But the process is greatly beneficial, and although it can be long, I enjoy working with my testers to ensure a well written and complete pattern.
JM: What would you tell (or what advice would you give) someone that wants to be a yarnpreneur™?
LS: I would tell them to connect with others that are currently successful in the area you wish to enter into. You can learn a lot from watching others, and the people in the crochet/knit community are so wonderful and helpful. Make friends, make connections, and put yourself out there.
JM: What do you wish you had done differently when you first started your business?
LS: I wish that I had taken the photography aspect more seriously when I first began. I look back on photos from years ago, and wish that the quality was higher so that I could still use the photos today. But technology advances so quickly, and camera quality changes with it, so going forward, I try to put the best photo quality out there that I can.
JM: What’s next for you and your business?
LS: The next thing for my business? I’m not sure I have a next thing at the moment, I’m pretty happy with what I have on my plate for the time being! I enjoy designing, I enjoy working for Happily Hooked Magazine, and I enjoy the Cactus and Cocoa blog. I’m just here enjoying my yarny-experience as it comes!
Thank you so much Lee for sharing your experiences with us!
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