Entrepreneur Spotlight: Kiwi Schloffel of Craft Boner

Quirky, fun and absolutely hilarious - Kiwi Schloffel, founder of Craft Boner, believes many people are drawn to her products due to her potty mouth, or could it be the pure honesty they provide? Kiwi has no problem telling it like it is. Whether it's posted on a greeting card, mug or button, her statements are absolutely on point. Read on and get to know the creative soul behind Craft Boner. Denver Style Magazine: What interested you in owning your own business, and what do you consider the most important characteristics to have in order to be your own boss? Kiwi Schloffel: :I actually never thought I’d have my own business - all I ever wanted was a job where I could be creative in some way. I started Craft Boner when I was doing technical work repairing computers and thought I might go mad if I didn’t have some way to be creative. It started as a blog then morphed into an Etsy shop selling jewelry before I started making cards and paper goods. The business has evolved so much as I figure out what is a good fit for me and what isn't; it has taken me more than 3 years to be comfortable enough to take it on full-time and quit my other side jobs. I think that one of the most important traits of being your own boss is the ability to be patient. Everybody thinks that things happen overnight but in reality it’s a lot of slow-moving transformations and accomplishments that you only realize when you can take a step back and look at your business as a whole. When you’re in charge of the whole she-bang you also need to be incredibly resilient because there are always going to be setbacks and obstacles that you don’t anticipate. The first few times I was faced with these sorts of “failures” I cried, ate copious amounts of ice cream and seriously considered giving up. Now I don’t spend a second dreading setbacks because I know that they’ll help me grow and learn and might wind up leading to something even better down the road.”

DSM: How did your background and interests lead you to Craft Boner? KS: “I have a background in journalism and graphic design, so I feel like my work now is me taking what I like most from both of those things and making words pretty. I’ve also loved making people laugh for as long as I can remember - I definitely did some stand up comedy for my stuffed animals when I was a little girl. Really I’ve just melded so much of my personality and humor into the business that it’s kind of a chicken or egg situation - I don’t know if my interests led me to Craft Boner or if Craft Boner helped me realize what really excites and inspires me.”

DSM:  How does your business stand out in a crowd? KS: “Lots of curse words! Ha, no. I think that while a lot of people are drawn to my products because of my potty mouth, they actually find them funny because I try to keep all of my designs so honest that they feature sayings that people think only pop into their head, when in reality they’re all part of the awkward and hilarious human experience. I also love to use a ton of color. Every single thing I make is hand lettered so it has the unique look as though every saying popped out of my brain right onto the paper.”

DSM: What is the inspiration behind your fashion choices? KS: “In college I studied fashion for two years before changing my major. While I’m grateful for that experience, it really helped me stop trying to acutely follow and replicate current trends and instead wear things that were unique and made me happy. That’s the biggest reason that I love thrifting, and where I find most of the main pieces for my wardrobe. I also love being able to see the potential in something rather than buying from a cookie cutter shop where I know exactly how I should wear a garment. I’ve bought dresses three sizes too big, a green sweater skirt and so many jackets that definitely belonged to grandmas, not because they had hanger appeal but because I knew that I was drawn to them and I could make them work for me. That being said, it’s hard for me to exactly put a pulse on my style, but it’s definitely colorful, quirky and involves a buttload of floral patterns. I’m especially drawn to clothes from the ‘90s and am 1000 percent more likely to wear a dress than pants on any given day.”

DSM: Whom do you aspire to be like? KS: “While I definitely admire funny ladies like Aidy Bryant, Tina Fey and Amy Poehler the people I find inspire me the most are my friends. I know so many amazing ladies all over the world doing wonderful things and I definitely aspire to steal a few of their personality traits, especially when it comes to courage and confidence to do exactly what you want to do or wear whatever you want to wear without having to apologize for following your heart. As far as fashion goes, I wish that I could raid the closet of Mindy Kaling - she wears sequins and fun prints and always looks like she has so much fun with fashion.”

DSM: What do you like the most about the Denver fashion scene? KS: “Honestly, I love the dichotomy of the Denver Fashion scene and that it’s easy to make an impression because so many people don workout clothes or t-shirts the majority of the time. I know that when I see someone wearing a really well-put together and thought out outfit that we’d probably have very similar sensibilities and would have a really good conversation. I lived in New York for a few years, and every day it felt like people were trying to dress for the runway. It was incredibly stressful. I love that Denver is so much more low-key, and while people appreciate style you don’t feel pressure to look flawless every single day.”

DSM: Who are you outside of your business? KS: “As a small business owner I feel like I am very much the same person inside my business that I am outside my business, especially since I spend so much time and energy working on it. But I’m trying to get better at having a life outside the business that includes lots of tacos, beer, road trips and annoying my boyfriend by making him binge watch terrible TV shows. I also try to spend time with my friends as much as possible because I think that a really fantastic lady date can be just the kind of rejuvenation you need to feel inspired to tackle a long to-do list.”

Craft Boner

Instagram: @craftboner