Crocheting, knitting, and quilting aren’t exactly what you’d call cutting-edge hobbies. Denver-based Craftsy, an online learning portal for all things craft, is changing that perception. John Levisay, Josh Scott, and Todd Tobin launched the biz more than a year ago. They felt that interactive online learning wasn’t, well, very interactive. The trio created a platform through which students and teachers could mingle during taped lectures via a real-time message board and decided to try the model out on the $20 billion crafts industry.

What’s surprising is that the founders looked to Colorado—not California and its tech-rich job market—to find a home for their start-up. “The engineering, production, and marketing talent in Denver is remarkable,” Levisay says. A year ago, the company had seven employees. Now, with 55, it has upgraded its Highland office space twice and has more than 700,000 users. Knit one, purl two? Yep, you’ll now find that phrase catching on in the Cloud.