featured artist :: cutesypoo

from the archives: 15.3.11

name: Jocelan + Jason
company: cutesypoo toys
links: website | blog | shop | twitter

What do you make?
My husband and I make cartoons for a living and formed this company out of our love of toys. I just wanted to recreate the kind of toys that inspire kids, instead of the toys you just get from the toy store that are made in china, why not make one of a kind of toys that kids really fall in love with? Plus we always wanted to make our cartoons come to life and animating them is ok..but when a kid can hold and touch and hug a toy…then that is really something!! Most of the toys we make are custom printed with ecofriendly inks such as the cone gnomes, but recently we are making embroidered toys with our new embroidery machine such as our cutesypoo pillows and plush kitties. Of course, we always try to make out toys ultra cute!!

What or who inspires you?
Kawaii culture like Hello Kitty, I worked on the Pucca tv show and that was an influence, japanese zakka style magazines, friends, flickr..food! I think of food when i make toys ..like the colours i will ask myself …does it look yummy enough to eat??

photo credit: studio jeanie

How did you get started?
I have been to japan twice and after i got back from the first trip there i started to try to sew my own toy bunny from a japanese felt book and when i did i was hooked! Funny thing is I tried hard not to create my own stuff because i am so creative at work I wanted to do a “mindless thing ” while i relaxed in front of the tv at night ..but eventually I couldn’t help myself when i started to draw something in my sketchbook i just HAD to make it!! The first thing i made was a plush coconut bun and i still have it.

What are your favourite materials to work with?
Cotton canvas, vintage scraps of fabric because it looks good and fleece and minky because it is easy to sew.

What is the hardest and your most favourite part of crafting?
Easy! My favourite is drawing up the ideas and also the satifaction of a completed project and my hardest is the whole part between that!!

Do you have any advice for those in the biz?
I know everyone says this but it’s true! Stay true to what you are and what you want to create but also be realistic with your products and see what sells and do research by doing craft shows to see what people think of your stuff. In other words..don’t just ask family and friends…

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