Trey has been featured before, but as the (surprisingly young–some folks expected a more seasoned persona at the helm of such a craft) lady behind Gantsilyo Guru. It’s been wonderful seeing first-hand how she’s grown her passion into a full-time business. She brings to the upcoming yarn sale the beautiful Katia yarns from Spain (anyone who buys these gets free digital copies of Katia patterns!), as well assorted threads and Japanese pattern books. She’ll also be leading two of the week’s Happy Hours: Crocheting Flowers on September 11, and the Pattern Swap on September 13. For the full schedule of Happy Hours, check out this previous blog post.
Tell us a bit about yourself. What do you do (if you have an alternate life apart from being supplier of happy maker things)?
Crochet has always been my passion. I remember daydreaming back when I was studying in school about crocheting for the rest of my life and being surrounded with so many yarn. Seriously. I may have a friend or two who can testify about this. I used to work in the corporate world. I dabbled in real estate, sugar trading, project management, and even some mining. When I turned 30, I found myself at a crossroads (apparently, it exists) and realized that there’s no better time than now to make something out of my passion. Last year, I started blogging about crochet and held my 1st crochet workshop here at Craft MNL. Crochet is my career now (I wish I could say I’m crocheter by day and a rockstar by night). I also help in the family business, but most of my time is dedicated to crochet and my newly-launched yarn store.
How did you get into selling yarn? How long have you been in this business?
I started accepting commissioned works and conducting workshops last quarter of 2012. I began selling yarn and crochet hooks in limited amounts at the start of the year because of inquiries from clients and from those who follow my blog and Facebook Page. I felt it was a good time to make one of my dreams a reality by launching my online store, Gantsilyo Guru Selections, just this August. I have big plans when it comes to making quality yarn available to anyone in the country. I’m really excited about it.
I’ve always felt that it’s a natural progression for me to go into selling yarn and other crochet and knit merchandise because of my seeming obsession with yarn and desire to make something out of them. I think it’s the perfect merchandise for me because I am truly interested in the material and I can instantly imagine the projects that can be done with it, especially with crochet. Also, yarn “hoarding” is something I truly enjoy.
What are your favorite yarn projects?
Crochet is my favorite medium when it comes to working with yarn. I’ve crocheted many types of projects with it. My favorite so far is making home décor like bedspreads or afghans. I like taking on big projects and experimenting with different color combinations. In fact, I am currently working on a queen-sized bedspread that will require 250+ pieces of motifs in different color combinations. I also like crocheting baby accents because they look cute on babies.
What’s your favorite kind of yarn?
It’s like asking me who’s my favorite child (even if I don’t have any) :p This is a difficult question to answer and my brilliant answer is…it depends! It depends on the project (and design) I want to work on. When you say “kind” in yarn terms, this encompasses so many varieties in thickness (weight) and in fiber type. I prefer thin cotton yarn for (crocheted) clothes because it’s more suitable in our country’s weather. It’s also great for intricate, lacy patterns. My go-to yarn for afghans or bedspreads would be medium acrylic because its thickness can cover more in terms of stitches and it’s durable. But then, I’ve already worked with thin mercerized cotton to make a bedspread as well. It really depends. Lately though, I’m tempted to use special blends of wool like merino or angora just because they’re soft and luscious. I’d want to have a scarf or shawl made with those.
What’s something you learned from getting into the business of selling yarn?
I’ve learned so far that educating my customers about my products goes hand-in-hand with selling them. I believe a lot of Filipinos are still not aware that we can crochet or knit with other types of yarn apart from the usual mercerized cotton or acrylic. There are so many types and brands of yarn out there. I want Filipinos to learn more about them and what they can do with them – and of course, be able to find buy the yarn wherever they are in the country.
What’s an important tidbit of information on yarn you can share that you think makers should know?
Know your yarn. Be imaginative about it. And never be afraid to dismantle.
***But wait, there’s more! It’s not the end of this post just yet. We’d just like to announce (for those awesome folks who read the entire post, that for those attending the Happy Hours Trey will be leading, she’ll be raffling off a vintage crochet magazine! So come on over and bring your friends!