Meet Reshma: The Maker of our Tassel Earrings
I’m very excited to introduce you to another talented designer and maker featured at Tuula Collective - Reshma from Hello Lavender!
I’ve been a fan of Reshma’s work for a while now, and when I was curating the spring/summer 2019 collection, I knew that her tassel earrings would be a perfect fit!
Now, let’s get started and learn more about this talented boss babe!
Tanya: I love that we both learned to crochet as children by watching our moms. What do you remember most from those moments?
Reshma: My mom would crochet little dresses for my dolls and I thought it was THE coolest thing ever. I would just watch her crochet and it was so mesmerizing. I remember it so vividly, the day I asked her to teach me. She gave me my very own crochet hook and I picked out the yarn from her stash and she taught me how to chain! Chain, Single Crochet, and Double Crochet were the only stitches I knew how to do. My mom never followed patterns either, so she just taught me the stitches she knew how to do. And back then there was no YouTube and I didn’t even know patterns existed. So, I would just make a lot of scarves all made with Double Crochet which was my favorite stitch growing up.
Tanya: What was your journey like when deciding to start your business?
Reshma: SO SCARY! Haha! I just had my first daughter and decided I wasn’t going to go back to my 9-5 job, but I knew I needed to do something as we needed the money. I always wanted to own my own business, but timing never seemed right. I was making all sorts of crochet goodies for my daughter when she was born and so many people were telling me that I needed to sell my creations.
At first, I just thought they were being nice. I flipped through Etsy pages seeing so many fiber designers and thought there’s no way anyone would buy my stuff. I think we all go through that fear and same thought process when we start anything right? Why would anyone buy my stuff when they could buy it from this person over here? But I knew one thing at the time, I didn’t want a 9-5 job. I was never suited for that structured work environment. So I jumped in head first and knew I had to start doing my own thing and it’s been the best decision I’ve ever made!
Tanya: I’ve been following you for a few years now and watching your fibre journey has been inspiring. Can you tell me about how you started dyeing yarn and a bit about your process?
Reshma: I started dyeing yarn summer of 2018! So not very long at all. I’ve always LOVED color. I went to design school and color theory class was my favorite. I’ve always had a connection with color, and I think it might come from my Indian upbringing! All the colorful clothing and jewelry I grew up wearing. I first tried natural dyeing because it seemed less scary than acid dyeing and I already had all the materials. I think I only dyed up a few skeins though at first with avocado pits and turmeric before I dived right into acid dyes. And now here we are almost a year later and I’m 100% natural dyeing all the yarn right now and love it.
Natural dyeing is so different than acid dyeing. When I acid dye I usually have inspiration images that helps create my colorways. Natural dyeing has been such an interesting adventure because I’m still learning what ingredients create what color and it’s never the color you think it will create either. For example, I died some yarn using pink hibiscus flowers and the yarn turned blue! Natural dyeing has taught me to be more relaxed and enjoy the process instead of obsessing over getting the perfect color to match my inspiration photos.
Tanya: I know that you have some big projects lined up (and some are still a secret!) but what is one of your goals for 2019?
Reshma: Yes, I do have a couple of secret projects in the works that I am so excited about! Goals seriously went out the window for me for this year as we’re expecting another little girl in a couple of months! This pregnancy has kicked my butt as I’ve been sick for most of it, so I haven’t been able to dedicate as much time to Hello Lavender as I was hoping. However, I’ve already started planning for 2020.
This year I just want to enjoy my growing family and not feel the pressure of the business. I’m still dyeing yarn when I can and knitting but I’ve shifted all my 2019 goals to 2020. Sometimes we can plan and plan and life just has a timeline of it’s own and we just have to go with the flow! One of my goals for this year however has been to grow my fiber jewelry line. I’ve already released a new design; The Juniper Earrings, and will hopefully be releasing a few more designs this year as well!
Tanya: As a mom, with another one on the way, how do you balance your small business with your family life? Any tips you’d like to share?
Reshma: Some days are easier than others. I have a great support system which allows me to run my business and without them I honestly don’t know how I would do it. My parents and in-laws live in the same town as I do, and they are a huge help. They help watch my 4yr old when I need to get some serious work done. My husband helps me a lot. He does all my tech, finances, shipping, yarn runs, and so much more! But honestly, it’s a lot of late nights after the kid (soon to be kids!) go to sleep. Being present with my family is so important to me and one of the reasons why I started my own business too. I don’t want to miss these moments with them as they’re growing up, so I dedicate evenings for my work. It’s definitely stressful and the lack of sleep is tough, but I don’t think I would trade that for anything.
I drink LOTS of coffee (not right now as I’m pregnant) but coffee is for sure my secret weapon! Make lists, plan out what needs to get accomplished and prioritize. It’s easy for us small business owners to get burned out fast, especially during market season. It’s important to be realistic about what you can accomplish in a day or in an evening. Sure, there will be some all nighters but it’s not realistic to be pulling all nighters all the time. Lists help me stay focused and make sure I’m still enjoying the making process. I’ve been prioritizing self-care a lot too. It’s so important for us makers to take the time to stretch and move around and walk away from your work. We’re usually hunched over when making and our hands are overworked which can cause some serious injuries. Make time for yourself!