Introducing the Fall 2021 Spoonflower Small Business Grant Recipients

OCT 19, 2021

Project bags from Small Business Grant Recipient Home Row Fiber Co.

Twice a year, creative entrepreneurs from around the world and at all stages of development apply for the Spoonflower Small Business Grant. This fall, we are excited to announce 15 talented grant recipients who were selected by four past awardees.

These creative small business owners are making their mark by producing unique products like expressive apparel, sensory toys, nerdy pet accessories, elegant lingerie and fanny packs. Meet the next class of grantees below and be sure to follow their work through social media as they further develop their brands!

Small Business Grant Panel

Nicole Brown
Ruth Nathan’s
SBG Winner Spring 2019

Tiffany McKnight
TLMcKnightART
SBG Winner Fall 2020

Ruth Stirb
Little Mae & Co
SBG Winner Spring 2021

Tess Clabby
Top Stitch Bitch
SBG Winner Spring 2021

Meet the Small Business Grant Recipients

Armand D Castilleja

The Honest Crook | @thehonestcrook | USA

The Honest Crook is a bright, bold and authentic lifestyle brand.

 

“The grant money allows me to grow without all the stress of “making it work.”  I took the leap in 2020 to go full time with The Honest Crook, and with that came many hardships. Having this type of support means I get a new opportunity to show my creativity and share my story, and for that I’m grateful!

Dogwood Denim without a doubt is my favorite fabric to work with. It’s 100% cotton and I love how durable yet soft this fabric is. Colors really pop on here too! My second favorite is Organic Cotton Sateen – it’s great for lining and market bags.”

Cath King

Mama Bear | @mama_bear_baby | Australia

Mama Bear is the home of handmade creations, specializing in unique baby clothing, accessories and gift boxes.

 

“Handmade, and a love for what we do, is at the forefront of our product. Our goal is to continue to create handmade items of the highest quality, products that are unique and treasured. Mama Bear LOVES Spoonflower fabrics, and this grant allows us to continue exploring and developing what meets our mother and baby needs. Nappy Pants are on the drawing board this time, and we can’t wait to release our new summer collection!

Mama Bear loves the quality of Petal Signature Cotton®, it sews beautifully and holds its shape. We always launder each piece before use, confidently knowing that our creations will remain gorgeous from day one. The price point is affordable, and gives our business an edge through the amazing color range and prints on offer. We love how designers ranges coordinate, allowing us to create entire collections easily, purchasing with confidence every time and feeling very special when designers allow us to resize their prints to suit our products.”

Sydney Jones

Iris + Sea | @irisandsea | USA

Iris + Sea empowers women to make a splash in the world through joy, color, and confidence, embodying a spontaneous spirit through playful one of a kind prints for apparel, accessories, and home decor.

 

“Receiving the Spoonflower small business grant is pivotal for Iris + Sea. With this grant, I am able to invest in sustainable materials and superior print quality to showcase our in-house designed prints. This grant will allow me to start growing this business and support the launch of apparel products in the Iris + Sea online store.

Organic Sweet Pea Gauze is my favorite go-to fabric at Spoonflower! I love this fabric most for its eco-friendly and airy quality. It is perfect for lightweight apparel and supports the Iris + Sea mission to use sustainable materials”

Corelle Rokicki

SciPaws | @scipaws | USA

SciPaws provides nerdy, yet stylish bandanas to pets around the world, while fostering enthusiasm for the diverse world of science.

 

“I started my shop with zero investment outside of whatever extra cash I had. Though it’s grown quite a bit since then, I still struggle financially with getting materials – especially fabric, since the uniqueness of my shop requires hard-to-find prints. This grant will help immensely with the financial burden of running a shop and with the holiday season coming up, I was worried that I wouldn’t be able to release a collection since I don’t currently have the funds for it.

My new go-to fabric is Performance Pique! I love how wrinkle resistant it is, so even after my products have been folded in storage for a while, they still look great and don’t even need to be ironed! I also love how color pops on this material as opposed to the Petal Signature Cotton or Cotton Poplin (both of which I also love for other reasons)!”

Elysia Contreras Springer

ReggioBaby LLC | @reggiobaby | USA

ReggioBaby makes sensory toys for people of all ages and abilities, providing safe exploration of materials through sound, color, touch, and shape.

 

“The grant will support my small business by providing material to build inventory for several upcoming fall and winter markets, and by giving me a step up in planning our wholesale launch for 2022.

I have yet to use a Spoonflower fabric I didn’t love, but my go-to fabric is definitely Petal Signature Cotton. With the seemingly endless pattern options paired with a durable yet snuggle-worthy feel, I use this fabric as a beautiful complementary backdrop to my hand-curated sensory toys.”

Ruth Garkut

Leaf Pads | @leaf.pads | Australia

Leaf Pads is a sustainable & eco-friendly online store, offering handmade reusable cloth pads that are made of 100% cotton fabrics. All products are zero waste and plastic free.

 

“Spoonflower’s small business grant will help my business immensely through allowing me to purchase lots more fabric for lots more products in my store – in particular, a new range of reusable cloth pads. This grant will help remove a large overhead cost from the manufacturing costs of my products.

I always go for the Petal Signature Cotton fabric – it is the perfect balance of soft and lightweight whilst also being a really nice thickness for easy sewing. The fabric is always printed in high quality with clear and bright graphics and I have never had any issues with it.”

Sally Otis

Small Joy | @smalljoy402 | USA

Small Joy provides unique outdoor products handmade with eco-friendly, socially responsible practices. Purpose and impact are equally as important as the product.

 

“The Spoonflower grant supports being able to prototype and launch a new product, the Small Joy Color-Me mats, and grow my brand. With the Spoonflower PRO account, I have the freedom to purchase materials as I need them rather than trying to wait for discounts or fret about shipping costs.

Hands-down I love Recycled Canvas! The colors are so vibrant and the material is incredibly durable and easy to clean – essential for outdoor use. Plus, the eco-friendly nature aligns nicely with Small Joy’s mission and business practices.”

Lucie Vaclavova

LVFD London@lvfdlondon | UK

LVFD London is a small and sustainable, bold and inspirative fashion brand on a mission to empower women by feel good and colorful designs.

 

“The grant will help me a lot. We had recently suffered a devastating damage by a tornado and the grant will help us to recover from the loss.

I love Spoonflower’s fabrics – especially organic cottons and satins. I have not had a chance to try the new products yet, but I am looking forward to doing so.”

Rochelle New

Home Row Fiber Co. | @homerowfiberco | USA

Home Row Fiber Co. provides handmade project bags and DIY kits for knit witches and wool wizards, crafted by an earth-reverent disabled maker inspiring fellow makers to craft real magic.

 

“I know I’m not alone in experiencing the screeching halt of momentum that the pandemic has had on small businesses. The Spoonflower Small Business Grant is allowing me to breathe, to grow, to move forward, to rebuild, and to once again work towards the business dreams I put on hold during this difficult time.

Working with 100% cotton fibers that are OEKO-TEX Standard 100 Certified means I can make knitting bags that are earth-conscious and biodegradable. Dogwood Denim, Lightweight Cotton Twill, and Organic Cotton Sateen are my favorites for their durability and superior print quality.”

Elizabeth Melgoza & Emi Pool

Beechwood Crew | @beechwood_crew | USA

Beechwood Crew offers coordinated collections of clothing and accessories for the family, in a range of gorgeous prints. All pieces are handmade to order locally in Ventura County, California.

 

“This grant is truly a game changer for us and will be central to our Holiday 2021 launch. As we are totally self-funded, this grant gives us the boost we need to create a really incredible Holiday collection and get our clothing and accessories in the hands of influencers and tastemakers who will help us spread the word about Beechwood Crew!

Our go-to fabrics are the cotton fabric blends – everything from Cotton Spandex Jersey to Cotton Poplin, as these are the most versatile. But we’re excited to branch out to some new fabrics for our Holiday collection!”

Teresa Yaghi

Dino+Pony | @dinoandpony | USA

Dino+Pony is an 100% organic, unisex baby clothing line, where they believe boys can wear pink and girls can wear dinosaurs!

 

“This grant will give me the ability to purchase significant fabric yardages for my fall/winter collection launch. With running a small business every penny counts, and this grant gives me that wiggle room to be able to explore and be creative with all the endless print options!

My go to Spoonflower product is Organic Cotton Knit. Not only is it super soft and takes prints wonderfully, but it is GOTS certified. My company is founded on using organic materials for our babies, so the GOTS organic knit is one of the biggest pulls for me. Also with the endless print options, I have discovered so many fantastic artists on Spoonflower, who are now a part of the Dino+Pony DNA.”

Niloufar Alenjery & Cory Cwiak

Junipine | @my_junipine | USA

NYC based pet apparel brand specializing in handmade, thoughtfully crafted products for dogs.

 

“We are very fortunate to be parents to two beautiful, sassy and intelligent Shiba Inu girls; Junica (red) and Rhea (cream). Since the day we brought these girls home, our lives were forever changed. We believe that there is no truer love in this world than the love of a dog and we have been humbled by the loyalty, love and companionship they have shown us. This love inspired us to create Junipine – a shop curated by a proud Mama Inu and Papa Inu who think that all dogs deserve to feel safe, loved and cared for. This grant helps us to continue to exercise our creativity in bigger and better ways.

We love the incredibly diverse selection of fabric prints. No matter who you are, Spoonflower has something for you. It never fails to provide an inspiring creative experience.”

Carly McDougald

Herelove | @hereloveshop | Canada

Herelove is the Toronto intimate apparel brand for the frisky femme. They create lingerie with a nostalgic aesthetic sprinkled with romantic feminism and proudly Canadian.

 

“This grant will help Herelove transition to the more delicate and luxurious fabrics traditionally used in lingerie, such as satin, with high quality digital prints that reflect our brands aesthetic perfectly.

Over the past few years, we have experimented with Spoonflower’s Cotton Spandex Jersey, Modern Jersey, Sport Lycra and Petal Signature Cotton. We’ve used these fabrics for some of our best-selling products and have gone as far as ordering custom prints in large bolts of fabric from Spoonflower. We are now exploring the world of Satin and have fallen in love with its smooth drape, luxurious shine and of course, the crisp vibrant digital printing.”

Heather Thornton

whirlykidde | @whirlykidde | USA

whirlykiddie is a line of poetic capsule collections of children’s products which consists of clothing, soft plush toys and poetry books. Everything is designed, illustrated and ethically produced in Illinois.

 

“With a small business grant from Spoonflower, I can create more products for both wholesale and retail orders. I can also use the grant to assist with sewing supplies, website fees and design tool fees, and my Spoonflower Pro Membership. As I get busier with more orders, my business will need more cash flow to help stock up on pre-made items for wholesale orders especially. Pre-made items would be dolls and plush toys which utilize Spoonflower fabrics. Throughout each year, I design two collections of children’s toys and clothing and those are submitted for sale on both wholesale and retail platforms alongside many events both online and in person too.

My go to fabrics that I mainly use for my small business are Spoonflower’s Organic Cotton Sateen and Organic Cotton Knit. I use Organic Cotton Sateen for my dresses, dolls and plush toys. I use Organic Cotton Knit for t-shirts, blankets and doll clothes.”

Christa Schoenbrodt

Studio Haus | @christa_studiohaus | USA

Christa, owner of Studio Haus, is a career-long graphic designer, now creating motifs for repeat patterns, which are hand-block printed on smaller products and digitally created for larger items.

 

“After years of creating digital designs, I began exploring the process of printmaking repeat designs using linoleum blocks and silkscreens. The pigments used for the process are mostly limited to natural textiles. With hand-printed design, it’s nearly impossible to print large scale products without the risks of errors and wasted materials. The process requires more space and time that are not always economically wise or even feasible for my studio. This Spoonflower grant allows me to expand product offerings into whole new, exciting directions—not only with my hand-crafted designs but with some of my digital work as well.

I’m most interested in large formatted products like wallpaper and fabric. However, the home decor products like pillows, wall art and others are of great interest. I really look forward to exploring what the market is drawn to with various Spoonflower products too.”

Spoonflower Staff Picks

We’re excited to introduce this round’s Spoonflower Staff Picks! This runner-up prize awards $250 in Spoonflower credit to four makers that caught the eye of our staff panelists.

Superior Scrub Caps

superiorscrubcaps.com

To date, we have used Spoonflower’s Petal Signature, Cotton Poplin and Organic Cotton Sateen to produce some of our scrub caps and they have all been great sellers. We look forward to using more unique designs!

“The Kindest” by Yasmin Designs Things

@thekindestdesignstudio

Beautifully functional, endlessly reusable stationery and gift supplies inspired by nature.

Kohzé LLC

kohzestore.com

KohZé is inspired by culture, fashion and art. My mission is to pass on my knowledge about my origin and heritage in an attempt to educate my clientele while proudly wearing items that reflect our culture and childhood.

BoBerry Design Co.

boberrydesignco.com

BoBerry Design Co. is a fabric design and quilting company whose mission is to engage women and girls in building confidence, creativity, and community through crafting and sewing.

Grace by Shan

gracebyshan.com

An online bookish boutique selling handmade items such as book sleeves.

Interested in applying for the next round?

Look forward to the next Small Business Grant deadline on March 1! Get your application in tip-top shape by checking out these pointers from past recipients.

Application Tips

Past Grantees

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