When you mix funky+fabulous you definitely get the Double Stitch Twins. These crochet extraordinaries have been perfecting their craft for 20+ years and it looks as if their skill level just keeps getting better and better! I absolutely love when women can take such a simple craft and turn it into a work of art...and that's exactly what Monika and Erika have done! Check out what they have to share with you all today.
I won't ask your age, but what was your favorite t.v. show to watch growing up?
Monika: Love Boat
Erika: Fantasy Island
What or who gave you the courage to start a business?
Honestly, it always felt more like what we've always done, and less like courage. We were both independent contractors since the age 17, doing hair in college, teaching aerobics and dance, managing our commercial print modeling careers, etc. As a matter of fact, to take it back even further, we taught dance choreography at a school in exchange for free dance lessons at age 14. We definitely didn't see it as courage, it's just that we had skills and talents and were able to use them as currency so to speak. By the time we were older, it was too late to be afraid of starting a business because as independent contractors, we always managed our own careers. Guess you can say, we just have entrepreneurial spirits.
Out of all the creative businesses you could have chosen to start, why did you choose crochet design?
Over the years, we've nurtured our special interests in health, fitness, nutrition, modeling, dance and crochet, just to name a few. Crochet design just happens to be the one that's enabled us to reach more people. Right before we started Double Stitch, I (Erika) started to have an interest in creating Mosaics. But just before I made my first one, Monika and I decided to crochet gifts for our family for the holidays and that was the end of that! I always wondered how far I would have taken Mosaic art though:-)
Lots of people want to be their own boss for obvious reasons, however they don't understand that it takes a great deal of commitment, and hard work. What's your workday like and how do you stay focused?
Commitment is right! Many times we describe ourselves as the most organized, unorganized people. lol! Our days vary so much, but we still have a natural order to our work week. A typical day can include, getting the kids off to school, having our morning smoothies, go to the gym to workout, run errands after class (shipping, emailing, supply shopping), sometimes going to auditions, coming back to our neighborhood to run more errands, do paperwork, set aside time to crochet and prepare for upcoming trunk show, fashion show or Craft events. Each individual task takes lots of preparation and social networks have added an extra outlet as well as extra work as far as marketing is concerned.
How do you find the strength to persevere when the challenges seem to outweigh the rewards?
As sisters, we strengthen each other, but we can truthfully say that we don't have any negative or non-supportive people in our circle. NONE! We looked up and realized that the people closest to us were spiritual, strong individuals that believe in the power of prayer, thoughts and words just like us. Whenever we are down all we have to do is pick up the phone or make a visit and the next thing you know, we're laughing and signifying! Our friends and family are a true blessing and they believe in what we are doing, even at times when we may question ourselves.
What inspires you?
The beauty of nature is awe-inspiring.
What's your go to wine when it's time to unwind? :)
We both like Kendall Jackson:-) Chardonnay
Most people who want to start a business don't know where to begin...any suggestions?
With information being a click away these days, research is a great start. You can google anything and get some solid information. Find groups and workshops that deal with your interest and start building knowledge about the business of ..."what ever it is that you like".
When it comes to the following words, what advice would you give?
Work: Gone are the days where you have to do a job you don't like to get by. Start with you personal or professional interest first, and then find inventive ways to not only make a living but make a good living at what you love. There is enough of everything for all of us. Ideas, work, money, happiness, etc...
Self: Honor your goals and aspirations. Showing support of yourself shows others how to react to you. If you are down and out and desperate, you will only attract much of the same. But if you do nice things for yourself and show the universe that you are worth it, the universe will show you that you are in many ways.
Life: Life is a journey, not a destination. So, enjoy yourself along the way.
Love: Loving is sharing.
Friends: Pay attention to the energy of your friends and circle. If you enjoy your friends and family and are there for them to enjoy you, all trials in life are that much easier.
I define a Bohemian Spirit as someone who is free, unique, and unafraid to make her own stamp on the world. Why are you a Bohemian Spirit?
Erika and Monika Simmons
Double Stitch LLC
Crochet Design Team, Authors, Models, Spokespersons