Tell us about your business.My father had undergone bypass surgery when I was 14 and came home with this vinyl heart that he was supposed to hug when he coughed or sneezed. Fast forward a few years later when I was in college with no money for Christmas presents. With the thought of hugging on my mind, I decided to make a monster that hugged my dad so he wouldn't miss me so much. Chest-Bump was born. From there, I made a few other monsters and my friends urged me to make them to sell. I started at craft fairs and they started flying; kids love the eyes! Now, their hugs range from a little hand-hold to a big chest hug. I hand-sew and stuff each monster full of love in my studio and have decided to keep the "handmade in the USA" quality while expanding my endeavors. Currently, I plan to expand into smaller shops whose customer base really understands and yearns to support local and handmade goods. I also plan to expand into hospitals where Chest-Bump can help other heart-surgery patients feel comfortable and loved.
What makes your business stand out?The unique part of my business is the "body-conscious" design that I have developed. Each monster hugs the natural curves of the human form, creating a cradling and comforting feeling when hugged. I also hand-sew each message in the monsters mouths or sides. They read "I Love You" or "I <3 U" or "<3" depending on the sizes. I really wanted to share the love and make it easy to share that notion with the world. These monsters are perfect for anyone needing to tell someone how much they care. Another facet of my business is the class and camp that I offer. After the monsters took off at craft fairs, I started to get a following of young kids that were interested in sewing. I began a Make-A-Monster Club for them and they had so much fun! I really get an enjoyment from seeing people hug and love these monsters!
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