The Official Beard Beanie is the invention of Taralee and Mitch Duffin from Utah, USA.
In 2008, Taralee decided she needed an outlet for all her creative energy – she loved crocheting beanies and all kinds of other cool stuff, and so decided to open an Etsy store, selling vintage gear and craft goodies.
Friends loved her amazing crocheting which got her thinking-up all kinds of crazy things for her to make: Halloween “candy-corn” hats, Leprechaun hats for St Patrick's Day, Christmas Tree and even turkey hats for Thanksgiving!
The spark which ignited the Beard Beanie™ dream came in 2009 when, at a local winter market, Mitch spotted a guy wearing a ski mask that had been lengthened to try and make it look like a beard. On the drive home, Mitch said to Taralee, “Hey, did you see that guy in the ski mask? A pretty sad attempt at a beard! I bet you could do better than that...”
“Nope, I really don't remember seeing him...” Taralee replied. Not entirely convinced, she took one of her crochet hats and crafted a beard to it.
Mitch loved it and immediately wore it to the local WalMart where he got heaps of attention - we're still amazed he didn't get arrested for looking like he was holding-up the store!
The very first Beard Beanie™ was given away at a Christmas party as a “white elephant” gift for Mitch's brother-in-law (he still has it – a real collector's item!). Family and friends loved the idea of the Beard Beanie™, so Taralee and Mitch decided to make some more and try selling them through the Etsy store "www.taraduff.etsy.com".
They took some photos, posted them on their blog, word spread and the orders started flowing in.
By the Fall of 2010, Taralee was hand-crocheting hundreds of Beard Beanies™ and they were starting to appear all over the place – in the ski resorts, on people's Facebook pages, on blogs and even on TV!
It was then Mitch and Taralee decided that they needed some help and hired some friends to help with the crocheting – a small team which, to this day, still hand crochets every beard!
So there you have it folks, the story of the original, and still the best, Beard Beanie™!