By Chris Day
STILLWATER, Okla. —
Sydney Shed never imagined a craft learned from her great-grandmother would supplement her income, but her crocheted children’s hats and purses and ribbon hair bows sell well at a Stillwater store and the internet.
Shed said she lived near her great-grandmother when she was a child. She learned to crochet and sew during visits to her home.
“I was three and she had commodity rice. I’d go down there and we would sit. She would crochet with me and knit. She also taught me how to make Barbie doll clothes – sewn by hand.”
It was fun for a 3-year old to learn crafts at her great-grandmother’s knees. Shed said she never imagined crafting would become a home-based business.
“I never thought this would become my life right now,” Shed said. “I never thought it a million years that this would be something.”
People want to buy crocheted items, but fewer and fewer people crochet, she said.
“A lot of people don’t know how to do it,” she said. “Used to be everybody could do it.”
Shed said she came to Stillwater in the 1960s and operated a home-based daycare center here for 36 years. She made hair bows for the children in daycare, she said. She sold hair bows and shirts as a side business in a kiosk at Woodland Hills Mall in Tulsa during the Christmas season and summer, and a large flea market in Canton, Texas, in the 1990s.
“My passion was the kids. So, I would make the bows and send them home with the girls,” she said.
She had to close the daycare following a car accident approximately nine years ago that left her with a neck injury that required surgery.
She said she turned to crafts to supplement her disability income. She started with hair bows and expanded to crocheted items.
She returned to Canton in 2011 and sold all the crocheted children’s hats she took with her. She returned from Texas with the idea for a home-based business.
She started selling her crocheted children’s items online and Miss Crumb Children’s Boutique and Tea Room, 712 N. Main St. in Stillwater.
The crocheted hats and purses feature a variety of themes, including monkeys, pumpkins, and popular videogame and Japanese anime characters.
She also takes special orders based on customers’ ideas. She recently crocheted a hat with a leaf on top because the child’s father was a forester.
It takes approximately three to four hours to crochet a hat. Purses take approximately four to five hours.
She hasn’t stopped making hair bows even though her crocheted items have become her most popular seller.
“I just crochet at night and during the day I do the ribbons,” she said.