CONTENT MAY BE NSFW.
Kinky Crafts creator Ray started crocheting sex toys as a jokey Christmas present for a friend. Realising it wasn’t such a bad idea, they ran with it and now Kinky Crafts has an amazing selection of crochet harnesses, up-cycled floggers and more! Here’s an interview with Ray:
Q) So firstly I have to ask the obvious, what the hell got you into crocheting sex toys?
A) I got into it as sort of a joke actually. I made my first harness for a friend for Christmas (it was made with baby alpaca wool which was very soft but not great for strap on harnesses :P). I was trying to be creative as I began exploring my queerness. I had some t-shirt yarn lying around and found that harnesses are pretty easy to make with t-shirt yarn, and so I posted those online. Floggers are also fairly easy to make from bike tubes, and in the spirit of recycling, I was excited about making those as well.
Q) Your Etsy clearly says everything is vegan, I’m assuming this is important to you?
A) I have never been vegan, but I have a lot of respect for veganism. I also have a lot of vegan friends and quickly learned that there aren’t a whole lot of vegan sex toy options. For harnesses, you generally either have leather (not vegan one bit), or nylon. Both of these options tend to be very uncomfortable and irritating on the skin.
Q) What first got you into crochet?
A) I learned crochet when I was 7 from my grandmother. She taught me the double crochet stitch and from there I ran with the craft. I like how versatile crochet can be in terms of forming shapes and 3D structure.
Q) What kind of responses have you had to your crafts?
A) I’ve had a lot of positive feedback about the crochet strap on harnesses. I’ve always been a little shy about this project because, well, it is a little weird, but folks have been very receptive. A lot of people have commented on how seeing crochet strap on harnesses is a refreshing break in the monotony of dark leathers and nylon in the sex toy world. Also, since the harnesses are fully functional, they provide a unique and super comfortable alternative to other materials. A friend also told me that the colorful and fuzzy nature of the crochet harnesses really appeals to those who don’t want sex to seem so serious. I’d like to provide something that makes strap on play more lighthearted and fun.
Q) Do you ever do fairs?
A) I’ve done one faire just recently in San Francisco. It was called the Fetish Flea Market at a venue called The Citadel. It was very exciting to me because it was the first time I was able to talk face-to-face with strangers about this project, and everyone was so sweet.
Q) I see you’ve done crochet ring gags in the past, is it something you’ve abandoned now?
A) Ha, I did make one crochet ring gag in the beginning of this project as I was testing the waters a little bit. I was unsure about how something as silly as crochet sex toys would appeal to others. I came up with the idea of making a crochet ring gag and thought to myself “this is so silly! I’m sure no one will want this”, but it sold fairly quickly! I haven’t given up on the idea entirely, though I’d like to think of a way to make ball and ring gags that don’t involve a mouth full of yarn. But maybe that’s something people are into and I’m being too close-minded! I think at this point I’ve gained a lot more confidence and have been able to have honest conversations with others about what they like and what they don’t about this project; I’m not sure any seemingly outlandish yarn-covered idea is off the table anymore.
Q) Do you have any new kinky crochet ideas in the pipeline?
A) The new ideas are the lacy nipple pasties, collars, and cuffs I mentioned earlier. I have a new design in mind for the harnesses that would allow for interchangeable ring sizes. I also have talked with friends about doing more bondage-y things that might include functional bondage belts with cuffs that would lock, as well as lacy blindfolds.
Q) What do you do as a “day job”, and how do you manage the crafty business and work balance? Or is this your life?
A) I’m a recent college graduate and for now I’m working odd jobs and living in my friend’s closet (back in the closet! haha). I guess for now I’ve had the time to put more love into this project, but I’m not sure I’m organized enough to do this full-time on my own.
Q) What advice would you give to people wanting to set up their own business?
A) Well, I hardly think I’m the best person to get business advice from :P I’ve read some articles on etsy that advise you to make one product you enjoy making and make lots of different versions. I really hate doing that. I get bored if I’m making the same general thing, and I’m excited to start really working on new items that hopefully will gain some interest. I’m much more creatively minded than business minded. I guess my advice from my business model would be: make some things, make an etsy page, then wait a while for people to notice :P
Find out more about Kinky Crafts on Ray’s Etsy page here.
And on Tumblr here.