I’m the face behind the logo, the hands behind the hook, and the heart behind the purpose!
I’m Cherie Mellick, the designer and blogger here at Sweet Bird Crochet! I started my handmade business late in 2020 as Hooked by NeeNee. In the first year of business, I learned A LOT! I learned what I loved (like designing crochet and writing patterns) and I also learned what I’m not a fan of (like making the same items over and over, preparing for craft markets, and taking custom orders). As 2021 was coming to a close, I found that the Hooked by NeeNee brand wasn’t fitting the direction of where my business was heading.
So, in January of 2022, I started planning out my re-brand and here we are! Sweet Bird Crochet was hatched and I’m totally here for it! I guess you’re wondering where I got the name Sweet Bird Crochet. If you follow me on Instagram, you’re probably familiar with my Indian Ringneck Parrot, Kalani. She’s the inspiration behind the name and the colors of my brand! Don’t you think the blue hues you see around the website reflect her feather color? I adopted Kalani in early 2021 when she was just a few months old. She was the bird no one wanted. She wasn’t a talker, she shied away from everyone, and for the most part she just sat in her cage. I gently took her out of her cage, sat on a nearby chair, and held her on my finger for 30 minutes…and I was in love! She is now a year old. Kalani and I are, for the most part, inseparable. I couldn’t of asked for a better feathered friend!
How did you learn crochet?
My friend Tina taught me how to crochet….well, she tried to teach me! 😂We sat at her kitchen table decades ago laughing hysterically at how I couldn’t grasp the concept of a simple granny square! About a year later, I found my K hook and scrap yarn and wanted to take another stab at it. I looked for a simple granny square pattern online, printed it out, and BOOM! I crocheted a granny square!
I haven’t put down my hook since! I still sleep with my very 1st…and very wonky crochet blanket! I’ve made a wide variety of crochet items and hands-down, blankets are my most favorite to make and design! To me, they bring a level of comfort and commitment when making them.
What are you passion about?
I am incredibly passionate about my local CASA program! CASA stands for Court Appointed Special Advocate. CASA is a national organization with programs in many counties across the U.S. In 2018, I was sworn in as a CASA volunteer and have advocated for 7 foster children in the juvenile justice system. I am currently working part-time as a recruiter for my local CASA program! Because I’m so passionate about the program, it’s easy for me to go out into my community and speak to others about the difference they can make for a foster child!
I’m also passionate about my grandbabies! I have four adult children and NINE grands! I have six granddaughters and three grandsons! I love being their NeeNee!
What is something people don't know about you?
I was raised in the Japanese culture on an island in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. My dad, who is actually my adoptive father, was Japanese. He grew up in Hawaii and after serving two tours in Vietnam, he was stationed in Georgia and lived in the same apartment complex we did. After he married my mother when I was nine months old, we all moved from Georgia to Hawaii. I danced hula for years and even danced professionally in competitions. My comfort food consists of some form of noodles, broth, seaweed, mochi, octopus, and all sorts of “weird foods” most people can’t stand the smell of!
My favorite hook is my purple Echinops hook from Bryan Nelson at nelsonwood.net. He makes THE. MOST. AWESOME. hooks! Favorite yarn? Hmmm….it’s a tie between HL and LB! I love ‘I Love This Yarn’ from Hobby Lobby and I also love almost anything Lion Brand puts out!
Your favorite hook and yarn?
Why did you start your small business?
This is an excellent question! I’ll be honest, I started my crochet business as a way to connect with others! Being an empty nester has huge benefits…but I also get quite lonely. When I first started my small business, I was a stay-at-home wife. Being a stay-at-home wife is much different than a stay-at-home mom. Being a SAHM, you are always busy trying to keep tiny humans alive and training them to be decent beautiful citizens. As a SAHW, I felt lonely most of the time.My house stayed clean, dishes didn’t get overwhelming, laundry was manageable, I didn’t have to chauffeur teenagers around. Life was lonely and what made it worse was my husband worked 2nd shift. Thankfully, after 6 years on 2nd’s, he’s now on first shift!
I have met the most amazing people virtually and in-person since starting Sweet Bird Crochet! When I say amazing, I’m talking they check in on me if I don’t post after a week kind of amazing! I was so surprised with what I found in the on-line crochet community. There is an encouragement and connection that I haven’t really found before. I love the connection and community and I’m glad you’re here and I hope you’ll stick around because I want to connect with you too!