This Toronto designer blew up thanks to her crocheted bucket hats

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Crochet bucket hats are cute, sturdy and certainly trendy these days. A Toronto woman recently turned her lockdown side hustle into a fully functioning fashion studio.

Jessica Papp is the founder and creative director of HotPot varietya brand known for its trendy handmade crochet accessories and clothing.

HotPot Variety’s most popular item, the Crochet Bucket Hat comes in a variety of different patterns and colors.

Papp told blogTO that the idea for her part-time job came about during lockdown in 2020. She worked full-time in advertising and decided to crochet as a hobby on the side.

“I needed a new hobby, I just needed something to channel my creative energy,” she explained.

Papp is self-taught and learned to crochet by watching YouTube tutorials.

After perfecting her crochet skills throughout 2020, Papp officially launched her brand in November of that year.

Papp says the hats’ popularity has grown over time, and it’s now branching out into making clothing and swimwear for the summer.

HotPot Variety hats are made from 100% cotton and each hat takes two to three hours to make. Papp said she makes between three and four hats a day.

As her business continues to grow, Papp says she needs to plan her pieces according to the season.

“It starts with a color palette, and then I think about the design,” she said. “I’ll take inspiration from what prints I usually love or what patterns I love.”


Last year Papp was contacted by one of Canada’s largest retailers, Get Renfrewto collaborate on a deal to showcase their crocheted hats.

Eager to support independent Canadian designers, Holt Renfrew approached Papp to order 60 hats. Papp said she spent all summer completing the assignment.

“I think crocheting is a good way to use my passion for textiles and then to be able to create my own garments and make my own patterns, which is really cool,” she said.

HotPot Variety’s crochet hats are available buy online and run for $170.

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