I am very excited to introduce you to Anna from The Knotty Boss today. Anna is a very talented maker that designs and crochets the cutest amigurumi cacti. And her talent doesn’t stop there! Anna is also a talented graphic designer who makes some seriously awesome templates for crafters to take their projects to the next level. If you haven’t already seen her Instagram account, you need to check it out. Read below to learn more about Anna and The Knotty Boss.
Tell me a little bit about yourself.
My name is Anna. I’m the maker behind @theknottyboss. I currently reside in the Philadelphia area, although I’m originally from Ukraine. As much as I would love for The Knotty Boss to be my main bread-n-butter, it’s currently a part time gig. Professionally, I’m a graphic designer, and have been doing design [as my full time job] for the past 14 years.
How long have you been crocheting?
I’ve been crocheting for a little over 2 years
Are there any other crafts that you enjoy doing?
Yes, I’m a craft hoarder. I love knitting, sewing, painting, paper crafts… the list goes on. Unfortunately, with work and crochet taking up most of my time, it doesn’t leave room for any other crafts at the moment
How did you learn to crochet?
From good old YouTube
How did you get started making cacti?
I’m a habitual plant murderer, so I wanted to make a plant for my desk that wouldn’t die after a month. I searched for ideas on pinterest until i stumbled onto a world of amigurumi cacti. That’s what made me want to learn crochet. I had to make a cactus!!!
What is your favourite project that you have designed to date?
That’s a hard one. It’s like picking your favorite child [not that I know what that’s like, since I’m not a mom] I think my Frida and Rosie inspired cacti are my favorite. They were so fun to design, and people seem to like them.
When did you start pursuing a business as a maker and why?
I think it was mainly peer-pressure, haha. Whenever people found out I made stuff, next question was always “do you have an Etsy store?” After a few months of crocheting I decided to open one. Although, until this year I only used Etsy for custom listings, so my store was empty.
What are your aspirations for your business?
I ask myself this question from time to time, but I seriously haven’t come up with a good answer yet. I obviously want to be successful, but doing what, I’m still not 100% sure of. Lately, design has been creeping into my crocheting world, and I’ve been working with different makers on their branding and packaging, which I LOVE TO DO! I would love to do more of that, in addition to crocheting.
How do you organize yourself and stick to your goals?
The only thing that I do to keep myself organized is make to-do lists. Other than that, I’m pretty all over the place. I know this might be shocking to hear, but I don’t really set any crazy goals for myself [when it comes to The Knotty Boss] I keep things very organic, and do what I feel like and when [unless i promise something specific to someone] Is that bad?
What are your biggest struggles as a maker?
Trying to achieve perfection, procrastination, inability to work on one thing at a time. Should I continue? haha.
Where does your inspiration come from?
From anywhere and everywhere. Friends and other makers, social media and also my customers. A lot of my cacti ideas came from customers with specific requests. For example, my first Frida cactus was a custom order.
What tips would you give to someone wanting to start out with a maker business?
I would be the worst person to give any business advice. However, as a designer, I can give some design advice… It’s important to know the difference between a professional logo and one designed with free apps with pre-made graphics. Good logos aren’t cheap, and cheap logos aren’t good [most of the time] Also, stay consistent with your branding fonts and colors.
What’s your favourite yarn/fibre to work with?
I love cotton yarns, but I also haven’t worked with that much yarn variety yet. I’m still learning and finding new fibers to work with.
Who inspires you? Who are your favourite makers?
There are so many makers that inspire me, I wouldn’t know where to start, plus I don’t want to leave anyone out.
If time and money were not an issue, what would your dream project be?
I would love to make a huge cactus with one of those giant yarns [the ones you can just hand crochet with]
Anything else you’d like to tell us about? (i.e. exciting future projects, fun tidbits, etc.)
Just some random-ness:
I love cheese, chocolate and sauv blanc. I’m a dog person [sorry, cats] I’m obsessed with typography and fonts. Recently I’ve been on a Judge Judy kick [can’t get enough of her sassy courtroom antics… and yes, it’s currently on in the background, as I type this]
Want to know where to find this talented maker? You can find Anna and The Knotty Boss at the links below:
Want to meet some other talented makers? Check out these interviews and the free crochet patterns these makers provided:
– Rainbow keychain pattern from Osage County Crochet,
– Derek the Dinosaur pattern from Sharky Knows Crochet,
– The Catena Hat pattern from Designs by Diligence.