Friday, September 22, 2023

Turning passion into a career… The Woolies Crochet Gurus

Claribel Tyolo never imagined that her passion for knitting could develop into a full-time job.

Tyolo, a native of Mahalapye village in the central district holds BA (Hons) in events management from Limkokwing University of Creative Technology.

Together with her co-worker Widzani Tonny, they formed a business called ‘Woolies Crochet Gurus’ which specializes in crocheting dresses, ponchos, socks just to name a few especially for kids.

Tonny was born and raised in Francistown and did Creative Multimedia also at Limkokwing but she specialized in Graphic Design.

“Passion drives us. We crochet with love and the motivation to produce something out of ordinary simple wool. We have the skills and talent so we want to do something unique and interesting to show the country,” Tyolo says.

She says they currently have no employees but wish to hire as the business grow as their biggest challenge is lack of finance to buy all the materials they need.

“We need a lot of different materials to crochet our products, we want to make different items and the material we use is different from item to item hence we fail what we need to achieve. And another challenge is that Batswana do not support locally produced products, they always complain about our pricing and they like to negotiate a lot, the Mahalapye born said.

However Tyolo says as they love what they do and need perseverance, they will continue crocheting more unique items to raise enough money so that they can be able to buy necessary material and build their business.

She urge government and private sectors to assist in funding if possible or sponsor the business with materials needed.

“They can also approach Woolies Crochet Gurus to design anything for them be it d├®cor, scarves or hats,” Tyolo added.

When asked where she sees their business in the next year’s Tyolo utters that, “It is every entrepreneur’s dream to see his/her business grow. We see ourselves having hired a few employees, producing 100 percent locally made products in large quantities, having expanded amazingly that is having other branches in some parts of Botswana as well as supplying other big shops like Woolworths.”

While Tonny advises other entrepreneurs by saying, “Every time you think of a business try to be unique, do not do what everyone is doing, do what the majority can not do.”


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