My Interview with India of Darn-Licious
By Stephanie Lynn, age 27, Massachusetts
India, age 25, from New York, started and operates Darn-Licious (darnlicious.etsy.com) which designs stylish hats, scarves, clutches, cowls, and more. I love her enthusiasm for her knit and crochet creations and her business story. I was pleased to have the honor of interviewing India this month. Enjoy! :)
Tell us about yourself and your style. What makes you stand out from other artists and crafters?
My name is India Williams and I love to knit and crochet. I first learned to knit while living in London for school. One night I saw my girlfriend making a shawl for her mom and asked her to teach me. By the end of the week all the girls were trying to learn how to knit. That's where the madness began. I continued to knit heavily because I just fell in love with the craft and all you could do with it. So, of course, I ran into a lot of patterns that I was interested in, but they were crocheted, so I thought it was time to teach myself to crochet. After that, there was no turning back, and I'm loving every minute of it!
I try to create items that are functional as well as unique. It helps me stand out from other artists who participate in the same craft. I tweak items and add unique features to make them stand out.
What motivated you to start your own business selling knitted and crocheted fashion accessories?
I am very much a self-starter. I love creating different pieces, and after a while had quite the collection of items, so I thought maybe people would love my pieces as much as I did. When friends and family saw my finished products they loved and wanted them and encouraged me to start my own business. So here I am developing my craft and my business.
What are some challenges you've faced while mastering your craft and running an online shop? How have you persevered through these challenges?
The challenges I have faced and I am still currently facing are marketing my business and products, getting my name out there, and getting consumers to my shop. It's a lot to juggle, and sometimes it can feel like you have to spend more time working on the business aspect when all you want to do is create. So it is definitely important to find a balance.
What do you do when you're not creating new fashions? Are you currently in school? What are some of your other interests, hobbies, and activities?
When I am not creating fashions I am working as a Visual Merchandising Coordinator as well as working on other aspects of the business. I love to be inspired through magazines, museums, and conversations with other creative individuals. It keeps me coming up with ideas for new items. Most of the items that I create I make up as I go. I create the pattern in my head. Then I write it down to catalog every piece. It makes it so much easier to recreate a piece.
One of my other interests is design, but more of a graphic design. I'm playing with a few different programs and seeing how creative I can get. It's a lot of fun.
What are some of your personal and professional goals for the future? What do you think the future will bring for you?
My ultimate professional goal for the future is to have a successful and fulfilling business that doesn't always feel like work because I love doing it. Of course, I have other smaller goals to help me along the way.
Finally, India, is there anything else you'd like our readers to know about you and/or your shop?
I just want everyone to know that I am currently working on a line of new products. I am very excited for what the future holds for Darn-Licious. Stay tuned!!!
Where can readers learn more about you and your business?
Etsy Shop: darnlicious.etsy.com
Please feel free to contact me about custom items or color changes.