Friday, September 15, 2017

An Interview with...Kalurah Hudson

Once a week I post interviews with interesting people about their insights on their experience of working in the Knitting industry. I’ve noticed that every one of these individuals makes their living in a slightly different manner bringing their own unique presence to the knitting world.

You can find
Kalurah here and here on Ravelry. She's here on
Instagram: kalurah and here on Youtube channel: WhiletheyPlay

Where do you find inspiration? 

I find the most inspiration from film and television. Just ask my husband. If a character is wearing a hat or scarf, he’ll say, “You’re just staring at those stitches aren’t you?"

What is your favourite knitting technique? 

I came into knitting already knowing how to crochet, so I found that Continental style knitting was just intuitive. The movements are similar and the yarn is held in the same hand.

Do you look at other designers’ work or are you afraid that you will be influenced by their designs?  

I love looking at other designer’s work. I think we all soak in and observe inspiration from other artists. It’s the beauty of art. Inspiration in what is around you.

How many sample/test knitters do you have working for you or do you do it all yourself? 

I knit my samples myself but I have a Ravelry group full of wildly talented testers. They play a tremendous role in the design process.

Did you do a formal business plan? 

Never. I started out wanting to make some extra money when my two youngest were at home with me. I never dreamed that my hobby would evolve into a small business that helps support my husband and family.

Do you have a mentor?  

I’ve found that my biggest Mentor is my wonderful husband of 17 years. He’s been there from day one, supporting me and holding my hand through the fears and the triumphs.

Do you have a business model that you have emulated? 

I find that this industry tends to fluctuate according to trends, so I try my best to keep an eye out for what the cool kids are into. Without losing sight of my own personal aesthetic. So, I guess my business model is to give my audience what they crave but without losing myself in the process.

Do you use a tech editor? 

I rely on my test-knitters, some of which have tech-editing skills. They are a life saver!

How do you maintain your life/work balance?

Family comes first. Always. I feel blessed to have a job where I can fit my workload into my life. And not the other way around.

How do you deal with criticism?

I take it deeply personal at first. And then I have my Mentor to turn to. My husband is a calming influence for me and reminds me that you can’t please everyone and to just take a deep breath and move on.

How long did it take for you to be able to support yourself? 

If we’re talking about financially, it took quite a while. My business was more of a hobby that I enjoyed while my kids were young and turned into something that I was forced to throw myself into. In 2014, my husband lost his job of 12 years with an insurance company. So, in order to offset some of that loss, I worked hard on building up my brand, working with more yarn companies, creating more designs and getting my name out there. In the end, it took another year and a half from when I first started. And I don’t regret a single day of it. That whole experience helped me grow. Both emotionally and in my business. But as far as supporting myself emotionally, I truly thank my husband for that. He is my support system, in my business and in life.

What advice would you give someone who wants to pursue a career in knitting? 

Do it! Just do it. Believe in yourself. If you love it, just put it out there. But don’t expect instant gratification. It takes work but that work is so worth it in the end.

What’s next for you? 

I am currently working with three different yarn companies on collaborations and design contracts. But my biggest dream is to write and publish a book about my journey, chock full of brand new designs.

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