Well, July 2016 is shaping up to be an exciting time for Hoola Monsters, and I thought it would be fitting to share the story of how it all began…
I started hoop dancing in the summer of 2007 after a friend introduced me to the art form. I actually created my first handmade hula hoop before I ever successfully spun one on my waist! I’ve always been crafty… as a child, I would comb the FL beaches for shells, to make jewelry for family and friends. In high school, I discovered a passion for mosaic art. So, when my friend Kacey invited me over for wine and hoop making, I was in! The first hoop I made was Watermelon themed, in pink and green. Kacey took it to a music festival she was vending, at Spirit of the Suwanee Music Park and it was actually the first hoop she sold that weekend!
Of course, my love for hoop dance was soon realized after that fateful hoop making night. I began teaching myself everything I could about the art form (from making hoops to learning the latest tricks and moves), and in 2008, I opened up my Etsy shop. At the same time, I started selling my handmade hula hoops at the Saturday Morning Market in St. Pete, FL. The market proved to be an amazing thing for me, considering it’s the largest farmer’s market in the Southeast United States. People started asking for classes and performances, and before I knew it, I was leaving my marketing career to be a full time Hoola Monster. Now, 9 years later, I’m pleased to say that I’m still a vendor at the Saturday Morning Market, and Hoola Monsters is one of the longest running hoop stores on Etsy!
And, I’m super excited to be featured in the July 2016 issue of Handmade Seller Magazine! What an honor! I also launched my jewelry website earlier this year and I expanded my ETSY shop to include Good Vibe Designs.
I love being a handmade artist, and there’s nothing more exciting than to see someone fall in love with an item I’ve created. I also love setting people up for success and welcome custom orders. Feel free to browse around my shop, or stop by my booth at the market, the next time you visit Sunny St. Pete You can also check out Hoola Monsters on Facebook or follow me on Instagram.
Hooping.org (the worldwide hub for all things hoop dance) quotes Abby Albaum, founder of Hoola Monsters & Hoola Monster Kids, on the health and wellness benefits of hoop dance, both physical and mental.
With Michelle Obama and the Center for Disease Control on a mission to wipe out childhood obesity in America, it is no surprise that hula hooping has come into the limelight as one way to maintain health for our kids. Childhood obesity has, after all, more than tripled in the past 30 years here. In a population-based sample of 5- to 17-year-olds, 70% of youth struggling with obesity today already have at least one risk factor for cardiovascular disease. Something obviously has to be done. Whether or not kids want to exercise, most want to play. Hula hooping is a great way for kids to spin up some exercise without really knowing it. And while that may not be a news flash exactly, it has seemed to me, as a mother, that my boys have been gaining a plethora of other benefits and life skills from picking up the hoop as well.Read more
ABC’s “The List” talks with Hoola Monster’s Abby Albaum about World Hoop Day 2012.
TAMPA, FL – The good old-fashioned hula hoop has made a comeback, and now it’s being employed, not only as a good work-out tool, but also a means of self-expression. Abby Albaum owns Hoola Monsters, Inc., the first full-service hoop company in the area. Abby designs handmade custom professional hoops, she has a performance troop which works parties and festivals, and she offers sessions where you can learn the art of hoop dancing and get fit, too…Read more
Published in the Saint Petersburg Times
Abby Albaum’s climb up the corporate ladder began with a global public relations job in New York and ended with a Hula Hoop lesson in Tampa Bay.
“Kacey Douglas, a traveling nurse, showed me how to hoop,” said Albaum, 31. “I was totally inspired, but two months later, she moved away. It was the summer of 2007. I had a million questions, but no one to teach me.”
Albaum turned to the Internet to learn twirls, jumps and spins. She searched for other hoopers and found them at Treasure Island Beach Drum Circle gatherings. While she worked in marketing full time for a Sarasota restaurant company, she made and sold hoops on weekends at the Saturday Morning Market in St. Petersburg. Before long, word spread: Albaum was the go-to person for the scoop on hoops.
Read the full article
Featured in Skirt! Magazine
It may come as a surprise that hooping wasn’t a favorite childhood activity for Hoola Monsters founder and lead instructor Abby Albaum. In fact, she says it wasn’t until she was 27 years old that she picked up her first hoop.
“I saw my friend Kacey hooping and was mesmerized that it had evolved into this gorgeous performance art, movement meditation practice and form of holistic health and well-being,” says the Florida native.Read more
Published in the Miami Herald
Hula hoops and art — an unconventional pairing of the silly and the serious — were the life of Miami Art Museum’s “Party on the Plaza” at the Cultural Center in downtown Miami Thursday night.
Outdoors, under a clear night sky, MAM patrons and other guests were treated to drinks, DJ music, a documentary called The Hooping Life projected onto a wall, and performances by the Hoola Monsters, a troupe that excels at twirling toy hoops around waists, limbs and necks.Read more