The idea of Little Box of Crochet was born in June 2015 when I was on holiday in Barbados with my daughter Jenny. Jenny had been diagnosed with an aggressive brain tumour in 2013 and after months of surgery and treatments she appeared to be in remission. I knew that her chances of living a long life were slim so my job was to pack in as many wonderful life experiences for her as I possibly could....hence Barbados.
My name is Amanda Bloom, lover of all things creative and cute and owner of Little Box of Crochet. I live in beautiful Cheshire in the North West of England.Read Our Story
June 2015 - where it all started
Back to work
Because Jenny was in remission, we were talking about me going back to work, doing something from home so that that I could still look after her. Although she was in remission, the surgery, chemo and radiotherapy had left their mark and Jenny still needed a lot of support.
The subscription box wave
We were lying by the pool, chatting and browsing the internet, when I came across a beauty subscription box. I had, until that point, been completely unaware of the emergence of the subscription box wave that was hitting the beauty industry. It got me thinking how much I loved the idea of a box of treats coming through my door each month but I wasn’t really interested in a beauty box. (Jenny was!) I thought how much I would love a box of crochet treats instead. After extensive googling and searching, I discovered that there wasn’t a single crochet subscription box to be found anywhere in the world! And just like that, I knew what I was going to do next. Jenny and I spent the rest of our holiday planning, researching, making lists and by the time we came home we had a business plan.
My starting point was to find someone who could help me create a beautiful box. I wanted it to be a joy to open; something that that no one would want to throw out. I was very lucky to find Nunet in Dorset.
A date for our launch... 31st August 2015
From there we slowly started to build up our list of ingredients and we set a date for our launch... 31st August 2015.
Devastatingly, Jenny was diagnosed with a tumour inside her heart. (She didn’t do things by halves) and had to undergo open heart surgery and chemotherapy. She survived and made a fantastic recovery, with her usual courage, humour and grace but we had to put our LBC plans on hold for a little while. Jenny was adamant that as soon as possible we should go ahead. She wisely realised that this exciting venture would give us a positive focus in life, rather than dwelling on her illness.
November 2015 - very happy times
So in November 2015 we launched our first ever Little Box of Crochet! My friend Kate Bruning from Greedy for Colour in New Zealand designed our first project, a Trio of Toadstools. The box was a massive success and we were soon selling out each month! Jenny and I did all the preparing and packing from our little flat in Hale, Cheshire. It was great that I was able to give Jenny jobs that she could do sitting on the sofa or tucked up in bed, and pay her for doing them. She knew that she genuinely had an important role to play and that really gave her a boost to her confidence. They were very happy times.
LBC grew at a rate of knots
Over the next year LBC grew at a rate of knots. Sadly Jenny became more and more ill, with the cancer spreading through her body relentlessly. Strangely we were still so happy. Cancer wasn’t our focus. At times running the business was extremely stressful but Jenny always encouraged me and supported me.
Love and support
In January 2017 we were given the terrible news that there was nothing more that could be done for Jenny and we were told that she just had a few weeks left to live. I can’t remember so much of that time. Jenny and I drank in as much of each other and of life as we possibly could. We were completely blown away by the love and support we received from the LBC community worldwide. On 13th May 2017, Jenny died in my arms.
For a long time afterwards I was totally numb. Running LBC was a comfort and a refuge. I felt close to Jenny, working on what we had built together. And always, always with so much love and support from our LBC family.
LBC has saved me really
I have to be honest, living without Jenny is tough. But having LBC has saved me really. I work long hours and love my work and that keeps me going. I have a marvellous team behind me, Moo and Hazel. Their support has meant that I’ve been able to focus on bringing to fruition some of the plans and dreams that Jenny and I had.
One of the things that we realised fairly early on was that not all wool is ethically sourced. Most of our projects are made with cotton for that reason and if we do use an animal fibre, I make sure that it’s come from happy sheep or alpacas. We also cater for vegan subscribers. If you let us know that you’re vegan, you can either skip any boxes with animal fibres in, or if possible we can offer you a non animal yarn as a substitute.