< / era >
I sent those potholders off yesterday as part of a trade with knittydirtygirl, an old Etsy chat friend. They were the last ones. So ends an era.
I started making potholders years ago, when I was about 7. My mom used to make them when she was little and figured I would like to as well. Those are the woven kind, made on a square loom. We were buying loops to make them at a craft store/nursery. That closed but she wrote the address on the bag and we got the directly from the company. That was exciting.
I don't remember how or why, but I started selling them. I sold some to my mom and her friends. My grandmother acted as my broker to her friends in NYC. She would order a whole bunch and sell them for me. I think my biggest order was 10 sets. I would weave while watching TV, scrunching the loops down when they got tight. I had dreams of having a potholder-selling store, figuring out how I could sell a set to everyone in the world. Yeah, I didn't know how to dream small- I wanted world domination or bust.
I had a book of patterns. I named them, had style numbers and wrote down the colors I used, how many of each, the layout, if the laying was different from the weaving. I still have that book actually. The potholders above were made later and therefore aren't in the book.
I don't really remember why I stopped. I got involved with sports and after-school things and just didn't have time I guess. I picked it back up when I found Etsy. Surprisingly to me, they didn't sell as well as I would have liked.
So when I tell people that remember those days they smile and say, "I still have the potholders you made me. Do you still make them?" It warms my heart.
I was an entrepreneur of handmade things from the get-go. They were other things I made and sold along the way, popsicle stick frames, angel ornaments. Guess that explains why I can't give it up.