Judy Johnson is the talented embroiderer and owner of Country Club Gifts, an Etsy shop that offers custom Embroider Buddy® products (and other items, too). I am in awe of Judy’s talent. Her vast assortment of buddies is impressive, so if you’re looking for that perfect Embroider Buddy® gift, I can almost guarantee Judy will have it! I sat down to chat with her about her passion and her business.
Donna: Tell us a little bit about yourself.
Judy: I live in the country with my husband and a bunch of animals. We watch our beautiful grandchildren daily. When I say we, I really mean my hubby watches them while I work in my shop!
Donna: How did you discover Embroider Buddy® embroidable products?
Judy: My friend saw someone doing them, and immediately knew it would be something I couldn't live without. I talked to Donna for the first time the next day.
Donna: How large is your collection?
I’m guessing the factory itself is probably the only place that has more than me! I have every buddy, cheer outfits, pillows, sock monkeys, and more to come.
Donna: When did you learn to embroider and what inspires your designs?
Judy: I have been embroidering for about three years and honestly, my customers inspire me more than anything. They toss an idea at me, and I am always up to the challenge. That being said, my grandkids are here with us every day, and each day they want a new Embroider Buddy® to take home. My son said “enough”. I still sneak them a new one now and again. It’s my right as a Nani, am I right?
Donna: What is your favourite Embroider Buddy® stuffed animal, and why?
Judy: I would have such a hard time picking just one. I have about six top picks, but each one has something unique about it. For example, Monty Monkey is REALLY photogenic, and Gerry Giraffe is by far my top seller, but I really do love them all. If I am making one as a gift to give, I still have a hard time deciding which one it will be!
Donna: What excites you most about the future of Embroider Buddy®? What stuffed animal would you like to see added to the collection? What other types of products would you like to see added to the Embroider Buddy® Home or Holiday collections?
Judy: Wow, that’s a loaded question! I am like a kid in a candy store when it comes to Embroider Buddy®. I want them all! If anyone can make it happen, it’s Donna! As far as new Buddies, everyone wants something different. I have received Sea Creatures requests, so maybe something from the water would be good to add to the collection. I also think a skunk would be “stinkin cute”!
Donna: Which of your Embroider Buddy® creations makes you smile most? Why?
Judy: Oh wow, they all have such personality. I swear that Peyton Panda is looking at me and judging. Buster Bulldog has a face with total attitude. Each time I open one up it makes me smile. I literally look at each one as if for the first time.
Donna: What is one thing about you that would surprise most people?
Judy: I had a soap, candle and bath shop for over 20 years. We had sales reps all over the country, and were in many shops and boutiques. We sold that business last December because the embroidery business took over. I am swamped with business, thanks to Embroider Buddy®!