Caterpillar Cross Stitch: The Trendy Cross Stitch Revolution

Caterpillar Cross Stitch: the female-founded cross stitch start-up that’s re-imagined the art of cross stitching by redefining the classic form of needle-craft.

Launched in 2015, Caterpillar Cross Stitch provides colourful, trendy kits, which have been adapted for pretty much everyone.

Sally Wilson, Caterpillar Cross Stitch’s Founder, used to be a solicitor, but she’s always had a passion for cross stitch.

“I’ve always been creative, having painted, sketched, and stitched from an early age. I used to design my own patterns as a teenager, and I started to stitch poems for my sisters. There’s always been something inside me that just HAS to design and make things,” explained Sally.

Sally Wilson, founder of Caterpillar Cross Stitch

While Sally’s passion for creativity was a real motivator, starting her own brand provided her with some challenging perspectives about what it meant to be a woman in business. Just before starting Caterpillar Cross Stitch, Sally admits to feeling stuck.

“I was on maternity leave, and I had quit my job. I wanted to be at home with my new baby, and to have flexibility with my working hours. I started an ecommerce course around niche websites, and one day, I had a light-bulb moment when I was looking for a cross stitch kit for my mum to stitch for my new baby. There just wasn’t anything modern and cool that would fit in with the neutral nursery,” said Sally.

After completing this ecommerce course, Sally decided to go ‘all in’ with Caterpillar Cross Stitch. During her first year or so, she managed to balance family and work life, as Caterpillar Cross Stitch was still fairly small. However, as the brand began to grow, and as Sally had her second child, she started to feel the increasing pressures of being a woman in business.

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There was this juxtaposition between being at home with the children and everything revolving around them, versus following my passion and putting my energy into something creatively fulfilling. I felt torn because of society’s expectations of women to do it all and have it all. I felt that I wasn’t doing either job well enough,” confessed Sally.

The pandemic only further catapulted the growth of Caterpillar Cross Stitch, but due to COVID-19 lock-downs, the new staff she had just recruited to help meet the rising demand were unable to start work.

Sally began to struggle. She was unable to fulfill orders, and she had to balance home-schooling her two young children from 9am – 3pm with running the business, which she did from 3pm – 10pm. Despite the overwhelming demands of work and family life, Sally pushed on, and she has managed to find a balance that works for her, and her brand has never been more popular.

The company has grown from £600 in the first year to a successful six figure business, which is set to reach seven figures in 2023.

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