Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Buffalo Etsy Team Interview: Sinthea from Knit•Laugh•Wine


Sinthea and artist-husband Justin opened their Etsy shop, Knit•Laugh•Wine, in December 2013. In addition to running the shop, they both have full-time jobs outside the home, and run around after four young boys ages 2, 6, 8 and 12. Dissatisfied with similar, commercially available products to prevent the inevitable baby boy peepee spray, she designed a knit version. In June, she applied for a copyright for her unique pattern.

With four sons, your knit specialty was born out of necessity. Was it after the first one that you thought "Enough is enough" ?
>>>  Honestly, I didn’t learn to knit until after boy number three, Grady, was born.  We started using cloth diapers to be environmentally friendly as well as to stop using disposables because of harsh chemicals. With cloth diapers, I needed diaper covers to stop any type of leaks he had. The wool covers I bought were hand-knit with hand-dyed wool. They were beautiful but very costly. I was paying for yarn and a knitter to make them. I finally said enough is enough and learned to knit. It was only after I learned to knit that I saw adorable Pee-pee TeepeesTM and I thought man, what a great idea! I’ve been getting sprayed for years! I saw teepees that were made of fabric and sewn. I thought if I can make them myself by knitting them it would save me some money — plus hand-knit goods, I feel, are always more durable than goods made of fabric, especially when it comes to urine. I’ve been knitting them ever since and they have really come in handy since we decided to add to our family. Of course we have yet another little boy!

How is your product different?
>>>  There are many products you can buy that are made with fabric that will shield the urine spray, but my hand-knit ones feature:
• AIRFLOW  Tiny holes help with airflow, for a more comfortable baby.
• BETTER FIT  Due to the nature of yarn, our covers are very stretchy for that perfect fit. Fabric covers don't stretch, and fall off when baby moves.
• COMFORT  Our covers are knit in a circle, so there are virtually no seams to cause irritation.
• DURABILITY  Acrylic (if you choose our acrylic) is resistant to moths, oils, chemicals and deterioration from sunlight — unlike fabric. Fabric covers become thin and fade after a few washes. Handknits last a very long time and can withstand years of use.
• UNIQUENESS  You can find sewn covers everywhere, but hand-knit ones can only be found through Knit•Laugh•Wine. You will never give the same gift as someone else at a baby shower!
Do you ever make anything for yourself?
>>>  Sometimes! With four little boys, most of my knitting is for them. Winter hats, mittens, scarves... they pretty much lose them as soon as they put them on! When it's time to knit for myself, it's usually a decorative cowl or small scarf. If I am feeling up to a challenge, I will knit myself a pair of socks. There's nothing better than the feeling of hand-knit wool on your feet, but they're very time-consuming so I only have a few pairs.

I've heard knitting described as a portable craft. Where's the most unusual place you've knitted?>>> The most unusual place was at an annual, worldwide event called "The Big Latch On." Mothers who breastfeed try to break records for the most women breastfeeding simultaneously. It's fun to be part of it, and my son Sullivan and I have been in the world record two years in a row for "most babies nursing at the same time." I have knit there while waiting for the event to begin. I knit little hats that looked like breasts to bring awareness to breastfeeding in public. I gave them away for free at the event. The mamas loved them!

You also offer knit wine glass cozies and boot cuffs in your shop. Any new products on the horizon?>>> Due to the season we will, very soon, be adding lots of reusable, environmentally friendly, hand-knit market bags. I use them all the time at farmer's markets and the grocery store. I get many compliments on them! They're so handy... they're small and compact yet stretch a ton — plus they are durable and machine-washable. Keep an eye out for those in the very near future.

One last question, just for fun: Do you and Justin own anything fragile?
 >>> Absolutely not! We discovered that sofas and box springs are fragile, even though you wouldn't think so.

Instagram: Knitlaughwine


Many thanks to Nicole Johnson of Mealy Monster for initiating the original Buffalo Etsy Team interviews!

Until I ask questions again, this is Carla from 716 Buffalos wishing you a happy summer and loads of Buffalove!  


  1. Another great interview Carla! I love learning all about the artisan and how she does it all!

    Sinthea, you are so creative! I wish you great success with your business. I don't know how you do it all with four boys (and a hubby)! I can't wait to see your market bags!

  2. Sinthea, thanks for taking the time to be interviewed!

  3. This was a fun read Carla and Sinthea - nice job! I have to agree with Linda - not sure how you do it all Sinthea! :)

  4. I love reading about people and why they create what they do. Thanks for the interview.