We had the good fortune of connecting with Krissy Mahendran and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Krissy, is there something you believe many others might not?
One piece of conventional advice I disagree with is needing to have everything figured out before you start. Why? Because that’s literally impossible!
When it comes to starting a small business, all you need to figure out are the basics (legally, financially, logistically, etc.) and determine what you want to sell/do and how. Once you’ve got that settled, start! You won’t know what you need to know until you start and if you try and predict everything, you’re going to end up spending time on things that might not matter.
The great and terrifying thing about starting a small business is that everything is constantly changing. Your branding will probably change. Your name? Might change! What you sell? Probably will change too! Your pricing? Should definitely change, you’re probably selling yourself short. But you won’t know any of these things until you start and figure out what you like, don’t like and how you want this journey to go for you.
I started out wanting to sell macrame home decor pieces I made for fun, just to cover the cost of this new hobby. Now I make custom home decor pieces and teach macrame to classes of crafting enthusiasts! I learned how to make my own website, I started learning about social media algorithms, worked with wholesale partners and so many other things I couldn’t even have fathomed doing before I started.
Having the basics figured out before you start is a must. But do you need to have everything figured out? Absolutely not. Explore, learn, make mistakes and find your own path. That’s the beauty of creating and learning!
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
Macrame is the art of tying knots, which in itself sounds pretty easy. But when you learn about all the various types of knots out there, what you can make with them and how you can use them to create beautiful pieces of art or functional decor, your mind will be blown.
I am lucky enough to be able to call myself a macrame artist; a hobby I developed during the start of the pandemic lockdown. Using cord and knots, I have been able to create some beautiful decor pieces that live in homes all around the country. I focus on creating unique, statement pieces that can also work as a functional decor item (such as wall hangings and plant hangers), but have also expanded my scope to offer accessories (such as jewelry and bags).
I started A Knot Story as a way to document my own journey in macrame. I was not expecting to turn it into a business, but it happened almost naturally. I wanted to be able to fund my own hobby so I thought I would offer the things I made up for sale and a year later, I’m making custom pieces for people all over the country! And for this, I credit my support system. I have a wonderful husband who helped me launch this business and made up for all the areas I lacked experience or knowledge in. On top of that, my family and friends provided so much support and encouragement the entire way. Their belief in me helped me overcome so many challenges. Without these people, I would not have been able to make A Knot Story into the thriving little engine of creativity that it is today.
While I love every single I have created, I’m probably the most proud of my mandalas. These are beautiful circular-shaped wall hangings that I designed to hang in any home, customizable for any colour or design request. My Geometric Mandala is my most requested custom order and I have been able to create some absolutely stunning versions of it that I love dearly thanks to my wonderful clients. Being able to take someone’s vision and letting them trust you to bring it to life is an honour and a privilege that I am thankful for every day that I get to do this.
I still think of myself as a beginner in this craft; there is so much to learn, try and do! Anytime I even start to feel like I know what I’m doing, something mesmerizing will come along, blow my mind all over again and I’m back to square one. But I think keeping this curiosity and thirst for learning is key to any craft, hobby or profession. Where is the joy in knowing it all? Exploration is how we learn and develop new skills, so we should continually be seeking to learn. That’s how I continue to find joy in this business and craft. Everyday is something new, whether it be as a crafter or as a small business owner.
A Knot Story is my exploration the world of macrame. I want to create beautiful, statement pieces that take your breath away and small, functional pieces that bring a smile to your face. I want to bring some beauty to my little corner of the creative world.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
I want to give a shoutout to Vogue Knitting Live, a wonderful division of Vogue focused on celebrating and encouraging the craft of knitting and crochet. With their support, I’ve been able to teach macrame to some absolutely wonderful students who already love crafting with fiber. Through them, I have also been able to explore other opportunities that might not have come my way if they had not taken a chance on me and my little business. I am forever grateful for their support and the wonderful community they’ve built.