Maker Mondays – Mohu Store

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Welcome back to Maker Mondays.  This week we have a really fun seller with a very sweet shop to share with you.  Back again in St. John’s Newfoundland, I would like to introduce you to Lauren of mohustore.

Mohu is the birthplace of a wonderland of teeny crochet creatures – amigurumi in Japanese.  With beady bobbly eyes, soft knit bodies and an enchanting array of colours, you might find that you quickly begin to amass a fair sized collection of little buddies.  And with from creatures hailing from land and sea, from fictional lands and from the earliest days of earth, you could easily build yourself the best little knit fantasy zoo!

There is a large range of creatures available for sale in shop, but a deft hand might also want to try giving life to their own creatures using one of Lauren’s simple to follow patterns.

Read on to learn more about Lauren and Mohu.

Hi Lauren.  Thanks for joining us.  Tell us a little bit about yourself and your adorable shop.

Móhu is a little project that I started just for fun, about 4 years ago. I was studying music at the time, but I needed a place to do other creative things too. At some point I started making little crocheted animals, called amigurumi, and I haven’t stopped! I work on móhu full-time now, designing and making all sorts of amigurumi animals. In the shop, you’ll find finished plushies, or patterns to make your own, as well as some cute animal illustrations and accessories.

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You live in Canada now. Where did you arrive from, and what brought you to us?

I’m from South Africa! We moved to Canada about 3 years ago, so that my husband could work as an artist on a video game called Drifter.

What exactly is amigurumi? Does it need to be a certain set of materials; limited to a certain size, etc?

An amigurumi is any stuffed toy that’s knitted or crocheted. The name comes from the Japanese words ami, which means knitted or crocheted, and nuigurumi, meaning stuffed doll. They’re usually small and cute, but there aren’t any real restrictions – an amigurumi can be absolutely any size and shape!

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You admit that you did not exactly set out to become an amigurumi maker. How did you end up doing so?

I made all sorts of things at first – greeting cards, housewares, jewellery, accessories, and a few small amigurumi foods. All those things were enjoyable to make, but my shop wasn’t particularly popular.

I happened to crochet some amigurumi animals once, and people seemed to liked them. The more animals I made, the more people took notice, and when I added crochet patterns things really started to take off. They’re so much fun to make, and I have so many ideas for different animals, so I just carried on making more.

You sell patterns so people can craft their own creatures. What level of experience would one need to get started?

Most of my patterns are really easy – someone with basic crochet skills would be able to make them. Sometimes it can be tricky to sew the small details in the right place, but there are lots of step-by-step photos to help. I’ve started adding basic crochet tutorials to my blog too, so that complete beginners can learn how to make amigurumi.

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Do your creatures all begin life as one of your original drawings?

Most of the creatures pop out when I’m crocheting something else. I’ll be making one animal and think, ‘Hey, I should try this thing,’ and a new creature emerges. I experiment with yarn a lot. Rough sketches came more recently, as a way to remember ideas and work out more complex designs. Then I usually end up drawing the creatures properly after they’ve taken amigurumi form.

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On your blog, you have some super-sweet illustrated Christmas cards? Will these be available on etsy for this coming season?

There will be Christmas cards in the shop soon! I’m updating the design a little bit this year, but they’ll be just as cute, if not cuter.

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Do you have a handmade item that you particularly treasure?

There’s a wool cardigan I knitted recently. It’s the first time I’ve knitted something that actually fits properly, so I’m super proud of it!

Thank you so much, Lauren for sharing your shop, mohustore and your cute creations with us today.  Be sure to check out her shop and remember that Lauren can turn any of the little creatures into an ornament with just a simple request. And really, who wouldn’t want a crochet moose or yeti on their Christmas tree this year?

(submitted by Carol of stringmealong and ThisBorrowedMoment on etsy)