It’s that time of the year again. Ornately decorated trees being put up after a long year of gathering dust; festive tunes being played in every department store until it soon too starts replaying in your head; and the collective stress and confusion on what to get your loved ones for the upcoming holidays. What if I tell you ‘Handmade by Temi’ - a local crochet business established in 2020 - can dissipate that stress? 


One common problem people find when searching for Christmas presents is overwhelming themselves by browsing on too many different websites, trying to guess what their family and friends want and overall just not having an enjoyable shopping experience. However, Temi Ogunniyi has made sure that her business caters to everyone. Accessories are a safe bet when it comes to gifts because you can never have too many to upgrade an outfit and you don’t have to wonder whether it’s the right size. Temi sells bags and hats in different patterns, colours and for different ages and sexes. To make it better, all the products are crocheted by her.  


Temi first learnt to crochet when her stepmother introduced it to her at around age 13. However, like many random hobbies we pick up around that age, she found that she wasn’t completing many projects and decided to drop it. That is until late 2019/early 2020 when she picked the skill up again and soon learnt that she could be making money from her skill. A mixture of the pandemic requiring her to keep “busy and stimulated” as well as the free time needed to hone her artistry allowed Temi to build her business. She described herself having mixed emotions when she started getting orders, saying that she was “excited people wanted to buy something that she had actually made”. As well as this she also touched on how the challenges of starting a business includes gauging “the willingness of people to pay what it’s [her items] worth”. However, like many small businesses, her hard work should not be taken for granted. The motto on her website tells us that ‘Every stitch tells a story’ and this is evident when you think about the effort she puts into her craft. Any old department store won’t assure you that you’re provided with intricately made pieces that have been crocheted with quality yarn and have taken hours to make like she does. Not to mention the fact that she does custom orders making it more personal and setting her apart from big accessory chains. 


To wrap this up, I want to emphasize the importance of supporting local businesses. If for whatever reason I haven’t convinced you yet to check her out yet, maybe the fact that appreciating our local markets does more help than you’d think will sway you. So don’t stress this Christmas because I’ve just given you the perfect idea for presents that you can gift your family, friends, and neighbours. And if you’re wondering what come next for Temi, she plans to appear at more local market stalls selling her products so keep an eye out for that on her website and her socials, ‘Handmade by Temi’.