I had the opportunity to interview the lovely Carriece who owns Crafty Hands Club, thank you to Carriece for answering my questions. I recently came across Crafty Hands Club on Twitter and, being someone who loves crafting, I loved the idea and wanted to know more so of course I jumped at the chance of a little interview.
Tell us a little bit about yourself.
I’m Carriece Jefferson born and raised in Chicago, Illinois. In addition to being owner of Crafty Hands Club, I’m also author of Short Stories Collection, Love Theories, a blogger, playwright, magazine contributor and public speaker. I enjoy reading, crafting, dancing, writing, business, and traveling.
Growing up as a creative child, it was difficult for me to stay focused when it came to learning boring school subjects and my social interaction with others was almost nonexistent. Between school and doctor’s visits, both professionals soon labeled me as a “special needs” child. Refusing to believe such diagnosis, my mother continued to exercise her faith and spent more time in my classroom to ensure that I my ability to learn was there. Weeks later a door of opportunity opened. Girls Scouts was starting a chapter in the neighborhood in which I resided and my mom immediately signed me up for it. It was those Saturday mornings where my love for the craft community began. Obtaining badges in Girl Scouts usually involve completion of a craft project or demonstrating leadership ability using skills of thinking, active listening, and reasoning. I still recall creating pot holders, friendship bracelets, custom laminated cups and wall decors for my parents. The one thing I loved most was how crafting brought a sense of joy and community. Within a year of spending Saturday mornings in Girl Scouts, my attention span was longer, my focus was much better, my listening skills improved and I started socializing more.
As a child I did basic jewelry making such as friendship bracelets and other bracelets using rubber materials. It was in 2012 when I saw a chainmaille design and I was interested in learning the media. After one class in the local area, I was hooked! To further my weaving skills, I started watching tutorials on YouTube, going to classes at Blue Buddha Boutique and downloading online tutorials (free and paid ones). In a year I started making my own jewelry and people asked who made it.
Can you tell us a little bit about Crafty Hands Club.
The beginning of Crafty Hands Club actually can from two incidents:
#1. One the jewelry-making side, people not only asked for order but they would always say things like “I wish I knew how to make jewelry” or “Too bad I don’t understand the tutorials”. At the time I didn’t bother to further inquire because I assumed that there were plenty of craft stores that offered instructional classes. Well one day I decided to try a stringing class at a local store only to be disappointed. The price of the class and supply purchases were close to $125. Adding to that, no salesperson had knowledge of the materials at all. Third, the instructor wasn’t good at instructing those new to jewelry-making. Lastly, out of the 30 of us in class, only 5-6 of us had a finished product.
#2. I was tired of starting a project and having to take time to browse online or brick and mortar stores because either the tools broke or I ran out of materials. While driving across town looking to replenish materials, sometimes the store discontinued the product or they had it in another size or color. I would be so frustrated that I ended up not completing the project and I was accumulating “odds and ends” materials.
By this time I felt there had to be a better way. Even though the demand for custom jewelry was there, it wasn’t going to get me to the ultimate goal. That’s when I started looking at the subscription box industry. As a child I remembered getting monthly boxes of reading workbooks from Morning Star and Highlights. I remembered how excited I looked forward to the next month of goodies. At first I thought the subscription service was just a phase but seeing that it’s still existing, I felt it was time to consider it. My mission is to build a community where people can connect and create through jewelry-making. Crafty Hands Club save people money, time, and frustration by sending everything needed to complete a project to their doorstep.
What Items can we expect to receive in the subscription boxes?
Customers can expect supplies, tools, tutorials, and surprise items (history of jewelry, handmade item, etc.) in their monthly boxes.
I love the idea of 'theme-of-the-month', can you let us in on any of the themes?
As far as them-of the-month boxes, I will say that future boxes will be focused on seasonal, awareness, country, and colored themes.
How are you pricing your subscription service? Is is monthly/yearly?
Crafty Hands Club is in the startup phase and starting in July we will be launching open enrollment for subscription sign up service. We will offer 3-month, 6-month, and 12-month services. However there will be a gift option for single box purchases. In the future we plan to offer special boxes for bridal parties, sororities, school colors, and mother & daughter time. Pricing for the boxes will be $60 (3 months), $120 (6 months), and $220 (12 months). Single boxes will be $19.99 plus shipping. Aside from the boxes, CHC offers jewelry-making parties, group classes, and fundraising opportunities
CHC also started a meetup group here in Chicago back in January of this year. The purpose of the meetup is to allow individuals who are either interested in learning jewelry-making or seasoned hobbyists to meet at a common location and craft. As of date there’s around 60 members.