How long have you been knitting?
I learned to knit as a child, but put my needles aside shortly thereafter. I had wanted to pick them back up off-and-on thought out the years, but never seemed to manage to find the time.
I relearned to knit in 1999 after asking my mother to make me a sweater. She explained that she would be happy to make me a scarf, but didn’t want to knit a whole sweater. My reply was ‘if I wanted a scarf I could make myself a scarf.’ When I went home for the holidays that year, I asked my mother to remind me how to cast on. As soon as I got the needles back in my hands, the muscle memory kicked in and I knew what I was doing.
I thought I might make myself a scarf (pictured below), maybe a hat. Little did I know that I was starting a new hobby that would become a passion.
What is on your needles right now?
I always have several things on my needles. But my ‘main project’ right now is the Holden Shawlette by Mindy Wilks in Alpaca Sox.
I also have a Fair Isle cowl, a cardigan, a pair of socks for my brother, and a mitered square blanket (my long term project).
Do you have a favorite type of project?
I tend to make a lot of socks. When I lived in New York City, they were a great subway project, as long as I kept the pattern simple. Unfortunately for me they are usually gifts for other people.
I also love to knit top-down sweaters. I love that you can try on the sweater as you go.
Who is your knitting hero?
Can I choose more than one?
I adore Elizabeth Zimmerman. I love her style of writing. Not to mention that she was a total knitting genius. Her use of simple stitches to make fabulous finished objects is astonishing.
I am also in awe of Barbara Walker. Her stitch guides are pretty incredible. I can’t imagine doing all of that chart work by hand.
I am also inspired by many of the knitters that I have met through the years. No matter their skill level, everyone has taught me something new - even if it just another way to see something, that I have taken for granted.
What is your professional background?
I hold a Bachelor’s of Fine Arts from Savannah College of Art and Design, majoring in Fashion. I started my career working for in the garment center for a private label dress company as an assistant. I did everything from cutting the samples to sourcing fabric and buttons. I held other positions in other private label companies, all with varying types of assistant work. I think my favorite title that I have held was Shopper. A big part of that job was to go to local store and see what our competition was doing and research trends. It was a lot of fun.
After about 8 years in the fashion industry, I decided that I wanted to make a change and started looking for positions that would combine my skills with a new direction. I stumbled upon a small private college in New York that taught the business of fashion and was looking for an assistant in their Institutional Advancement department, which includes Marketing, PR, Fundraising, Development and Alumni Affairs. It was a perfect fit.
I also worked part-time at Annie and Company Knitting in New York City for about 4 and half years. I loved being able to connect with other knitters, see what they were working on and helping them with their problems. I think my favorite part of that job, was seeing someone have their ‘light bulb moment.’
I have also had a few patterns published and am hoping to contribute some to Classic Elite Yarns.
About 8 months ago, I started assessing my life and I came to the conclusion that I wanted a smaller life and slower pace than New York City could offer me. I grew up in the Midwest and the hustle and bustle of the big city was never an easy fit for me, I was ecstatic when the position at Classic Elite Yarns was announced.
Do you have any other hobbies, besides knitting?
Wait, there are other hobbies besides knitting?
In all seriousness, I love doing anything that is considered creative or crafty. I currently have a few needlepoint projects that I am working on. I used to be an avid sewer and am hoping to get back to that. I am also hoping to take a weaving class in the near future and maybe even a pottery class.
What are you looking forward to most working for Classic Elite Yarns?
I am really looking forward to being in a creative environment. I had my first CEY photo shoot last week, and while it was very cold out, it was really exciting.
Connecting with all of our customers and getting feedback from them is something else I am really interested in. I am hoping to increase our presence on Twitter, Facebook, Ravelry and other social media platforms in the coming months.
And being surrounded by yarn all day long…that’s not half bad either.