“Don’t play with lasers or sharp tools.” Sound advice for the masses, but exactly what this designer does resulting in the most adorable, whimsical buttons, gauge tools, removable stitch markers, knitter earrings, and other knit and crochet accessories!
Please join me in welcoming Katy from Katrinkles in this 3rd of 3 CIA Cowl MKAL interviews.
Your website is packed with goodies! How did you get started with laser cutting?
I don’t think I consciously decided to launch a business, it just kind of happened. After taking a laser cutting workshop, I began making buttons to adorn my own knits. I started selling them because people asked me to and Katrinkles was born as a hobby business. I worked on in tandem with designing jewelry full time. As it got busier in 2012 I started working part time and in 2015 I started doing it full time. I feel so lucky that it has worked out for me to be able to focus all of my time on something that I love so much! Now I have two employees, two laser cutter machines and I’ve moved to a larger studio.
I love your eco principles for using sustainable, renewable, and when possible, local materials. What was the catalyst behind using eco materials?
Every piece of the Katrinkles line is made in our studio in Pawtucket, RI. It’s important to me that I’m using a material that is plentiful and certified sustainable. I initially chose bamboo because of its strength and antibacterial properties. In early 2017 I started using a domestic hardwood called Alder for all of my tools. I love the natural iridescence in its surface and its rich caramel color. The best thing about alder is that it’s sustainable, renewable and local: it grows in the northeastern US. Each board is custom milled for me by a local wood shop here in Rhode Island. I’m still using bamboo for buttons because I love that it can go in the washer and the dryer but I’m really thrilled to be using Alder for everything else.
Katrinkles is a great name! I read on your About page it was a childhood nickname. Is there a fun story associated with it?
Katrinkles (KUH-trinklz) is a silly nickname that my mom called me as a kid. Without putting much thought into it, it eventually became my business name. At first I would kind of cringe when I heard it being used but I’ve more recently embraced it. Now I feel like it really works with the fun, cutesy line my brand has become and I’m really thankful for how unique it is.
You mentioned you & your dad are hitting “our annual spring tour of New England’s many fiber related events.” How’s the best way for people to find out if you’ll be at an event near them?
The events page here .
Puddles species to species question. What role does Maximillian play in Katrinkles?
Having a dog is so awesome because he’s always reminding me that it’s time to go outside. Max and I both need fresh air periodically to recharge in our own ways. We especially love the beach year round but are also pretty excited about walks in the woods. I’m also due for an art museum day (without the dog). There are so many great ones around and I always leave feeling so full of inspiration and ideas.
Katrinkle buttons and tools are also offered in an array of yarn shops around the world! To find a shop near you, check out her Stockist page here.