Anyone who grew up watching Sesame Street knows that there’s nothing fuzzier, friendlier or more cuddly than a monster. And the only thing better than a cuddly monster is one that is also kind to the Earth. The adorable Wooldebeast friends are kind as can be, made with repurposed wool and recycled Ecofill stuffing. Shop owner and designer Sarah makes these fuzzy friends, along with a selection of fashionable felt bags and fur-ocious mittens from her home in Toronto, Ontario. Oh Canada has put the spotlight on Sarah and the beasts.
Of all the things that you create, which item or style is your favorite?
Sarah: I love designing and sketching beasts, playing colours against each other and hand-embroidering their faces.
Where did you learn your skills?
Sarah: When I was a wee little thing, I used to sit on the spare bed where my mom quilted and I’d embroider. I was a country mouse then, and everyone – me, included – took 4-H classes and learned to sew. Later I went to art school and specialized in craft design and making. I teach, too and learn lots from students!
Everyone has different motivations for making their unique wares. What drives you to create?
Sarah: Drawing and making are a way of life, and something akin to breathing. If I’m not making something, I get restless!
If you could learn to use any new technique or material, what would it be?
Sarah: Although I embroidered alongside my quilting mama, I didn’t pick up her craft. I’d like to know how to assemble and bind a quilted wall-hanging -- of beastly faces, maybe?
Any plans to incorporate a new product into your shop this year?
I’d like to make mother and child beast combos, or even families. People have asked for beastly mittens for adults, so I’ve got to get on that for next season.
What is your favorite thing about selling on Etsy?
Sarah: Making is a solo gig (although I team up with my neighbour Jocelyn for weekly sew-fests) and so Etsy is great for giving community to craft. I’ve recently joined the Plush Team via Etsy, and the support from that group is fantastic.
Do you have a number one tip for new sellers?
Sarah: Research! Check what’s out there – there’s so much information on Etsy about what buyers love (“heart”) and buy, so use it! On the other hand, make something you love enough to sustain your interest.
What is your favorite thing to buy on Etsy?
Sarah: I bought a gorgeous crocheted scarf from AuntieDawn for a Christmas present. I search out local Canadians for gift-buying.
What is the number one best item in your shop right now?
Sarah: Beasts! I have two sizes, but people seem to like the larger, 12” ones best.
You can see all of Sarah’s creations in her Etsy shop, Wooldebeast. You can also stay up to date on her latest additions and sales by following her on Twitter. To see even more fantastic art by Canadians, add the tag “OhCanadaTeam” to your searches on Etsy.com.
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