“For Makers by Makers” is a phrase you’ll likely come across when you browse our website. But what does it mean? Simply put, it means our team is always on the lookout for products that we think will bring beauty and ease to your making practice—whether it’s a bucket bag designed for making on-the-go, a tool that helps you measure yarn weight, or a lovely vessel to collect your most precious notions...the list goes on. In short, we strive to put you, the maker, top of mind when sourcing and creating maker tools and accessories.
Recently, we were on the lookout for some new stitch markers; this of course, got us asking the question: can stitch markers be beautiful AND functional? The answer, of course, is a resounding yes, which brings us to this lovely Q&A with Ruth Blohm-Hunter of Blue Bird Makery, designer of the newly released Artisan Stitch Markers. We hope you enjoy Ruth’s story, and are inspired to make the most of this season!
Tell us a little about yourself—what got you into making? What made you decide to start your own business?
I’ve been a maker for as long as I can remember. Over the years, I have learned a wide variety of skills from knitting to metalsmithing to digital design. I enjoy combining my range of skills to create unique and functional designs.
I started Blue Bird Makery in 2017 selling handmade art buttons and stitch markers online and at various fiber festivals. Not long after that, I decided to go back to school to finish my degree in film and media production. As I became busier with film school, my business transitioned to more of a “side hustle,” as the kids would say. My intention was to go into television production after graduation, so that’s really where my focus was.
Enter the pandemic.
Quarantine meant transitioning to classes online and not actively working on film projects on campus anymore, which left a creative void in my life. In order to fill it (and help me get a headstart on paying off my student loans), I decided to breathe new life into my business at the beginning of this year. I began creating new button and knitting notion designs and reopened my Etsy shop. After graduating in the spring and navigating a less-than-ideal job market, I opted to take a break from the stress of job hunting and direct all of my focus to building my business.
The business has since grown much faster than I had anticipated and no one is more surprised than me! This isn’t where I thought I’d be after finishing film school, but I certainly can’t complain.
Do you feel you have a particular style in your designs? How would you describe them?
I think if I had to describe my design style I would say it is clean, simple, and colorful in a way that is carefully thought out and executed.
Tell us a little about your creative process—where do your ideas come from?
I like to look at everyday objects and find ways to give them a new aesthetic. As a knitter, I know that a stitch marker can be something as simple as a small rubber band, but it doesn’t have to be. Just because something is meant to be utilitarian, doesn’t mean that it has to look utilitarian. That is the mindset I use to help me come up with new designs.
There is a lot of trial and error that goes along with that. Rarely does a design work perfectly right out of the gate and so I spend a good deal of time testing my designs to refine them and work out any kinks. I want other fiberists to find my designs as useful as I find them and I work very hard to create notions that are pleasant to work with and to look at.
Do you have a favorite kind of material to work with? What do you like most about working with this material?
Well, I’m a knitter, so it would be sacrilege for me to not say that yarn is my favorite material to work with. Heh. It’s actually pretty difficult for me to narrow it down to favorites because each material that I use has its own unique qualities. For me, it’s more about knowing which material is the right one for the job.
Is there a craft that interests you that you haven’t tried yet?
I hope to eventually invest in a kiln so that I can learn enameling and further explore glass fusing, which I learned about 10 years ago.
Is there anything else you would like to say about creating the Artisan Beaded Stitch Markers?
This is actually one of my favorite designs. I use these stitch markers all the time and I am so happy to be able to share this exclusive set with Twig & Horn’s customers. I hope that everyone who purchases them finds them as useful and attractive as I do.
We hope you enjoyed hearing from Ruth, and encourage you to check out her beautiful Artisan Stitch Markers, made exclusively for Twig & Horn. Follow Ruth along on her making adventures at and be sure to @bluebirdmakery and check out her Etsy store.