My name is Marie Segares and I’m a crochet and knitting designer and teacher, a crafts and food blogger, author, podcaster, and small business consultant.Thaden's Asymmetrical Shawl, crochet pattern by Marie Segares

Growing up, I never wanted to own a business. My mom is an entrepreneur, and I knew that it required a lot of hard work and dedication. There was always uncertainty, even if you became successful.

In high school, I was involved in a pilot health education program, and, as a result, I developed great public speaking skills even though I’m an introvert. After graduating from Barnard College, I pursued a career in health education and went to Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health at night to earn a Master’s degree while working full time. Eventually, I realized I wanted a larger role in managing programs, so I went back to school at night again.

This time, I went to New York University’s Stern School of Business. The non-profit management courses were part of the Entrepreneurship and Innovation concentration, and soon most of my classes were about entrepreneurship and small business issues. It was a great match because my own experience was largely intrapreneurial – I’ve launched or expanded programs as part of every job I held since graduating from college. I started to realize there was a lot about owning a small business that appealed to me. I even did some consulting to small non-profits while I was in school, and ended up presenting at a large federal conference as a result.

After earning my MBA in January, 2008, I launched Underground Crafter as a part-time business and kept working full-time as a non-profit manager. My original plan was to teach crochet and to sell my finished objects in craft fairs. Pretty soon, I learned the craft fair scene wasn’t for me – I’m an introvert, remember? – and I decided to refocus my efforts on designing. Soon, I added blogging and knitting to the mix.

After running Underground Crafter for a few years, I seized two chance opportunities to work as a consultant to other small businesses in the industry. Eventually, I realized that working for someone else was no longer for me, and in October, 2013, I became fully self-employed. Underground Crafter was just one piece of my overall income, but it inspired me to go completely solopreneur.

In August, 2014, I launched the Creative Yarn Entrepreneur, LLC, a business completely focused on the unique needs of indies in the yarn industry. My first project was the Creative Yarn Entrepreneur Show, a podcast filled with great ideas for launching, managing, and evolving your yarn-related business, along with tips for staying productive, creative, and sane. In June, 2016, I self-published my first book, Make Money Teaching Crochet: Launch Your Business, Increase Your Side Income, Reach More Students. In January, 2017, I started working full time as a college professor in the management and information technology department of a small, liberal arts college.

The podcast is currently on hiatus but you can still listen to episodes of the Show here on the website, or subscribe on iTunes, Stitcher, or TuneIn. You can join the mailing list here.

I look forward to hearing from you about your successes, questions, and concerns related to your business!

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Comments 5

  • I was wondering who was behind this site. Haven’t listened in yet but will soon.

    I know how it is being an introvert – crafts shows weren’t my thing either. I am more comfortable writing and working behind the scenes.

    Congrats on your new business.

    • Thanks for stopping by, Sara! I agree, craft shows are not for everyone, and I, too, enjoy writing more than many other activities.

  • […] available through Etsy and Ravelry and a crochet book reviewer for CGOA. In August she launched the Creative Yarn Entrepreneur, LLC, a business completely focused on the unique needs of indies in the yarn […]

  • I have learned a lot by listening to your podcasts. I especially like how you review the key points at the end. I am the designer, maker and owner of HookedbyAngel. During one of the shows you mentioned that you would be willing to review a listeners website and give them a few pointers. I have listed my Etsy store and Facebook website above. I think I have an original concept in the works. I crochet custom cup cozies and treat jars cozies to look like pictures of someone’s actual dog. I look at a picture submitted and recreate it in yarn. I have been working really hard to get my product noticed, but I’m not sure I’m going about it in the right way. Your insight would be truly appreciated!


    • Thanks for stopping by, Angie! It looks like you have a very defined product concept. Your pictures are pretty clear (we can all always improve, though) and it seems like you have great packaging and are already in a local store. You say you are working really hard to get your product noticed, but it isn’t exactly clear to me how you are doing that (other than posting on your Facebook page and/or Twitter). Some questions I would ask about your Etsy shop are where are you getting traffic from and are you satisfied with the results you are getting from your current tags/keywords? Have you thought about who your target audience is and how to find and engage with them online? Also, are you active in communities of successful Etsy sellers – either through the Etsy forums, teams, or through Ijeoma Eleazu’s Etsy Conversations Podcast group on Facebook? (Ijeoma was a guest on Episode 9, so you may want to go back and listen to that show.) They will probably share great advice for getting traffic from the right customers to your shop. Good luck and let me know if you have other questions!

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