One year ago today I made the very first post on Treewool. Hooray! In a way, I’m still trying to figure out what I want this blog to be, and which parts of my life to share here. For awhile it’s be exclusively knitting focused, but I’m thinking I would like to branch further into other important parts of my life like fashion, design and, of course, food.
But I won’t won’t waste anymore time with reflections or my hopes and dreams. Here it is….
Isn’t this just the cutest tee? You all know how I feel about Spring-time knitting by now. Nami looks like the perfect top for warm summer days. I can’t wait to knit one myself!
How about some Q&A with the designer first?
Treewool: How long have you been knitting without animal fibers? Do you ever find it challenging to knit as a vegan?
Christabel: After I made the dietary change to veganism in August 2008, it took me about 6 months to decide how this would affect my crafting. By the end of this period I decided that I wasn’t comfortable using animals for monetary gain–either directly or indirectly, and decided to destash my existing animal-derived yarn, as I felt someone else would get more use out of them. This was a tough decision, but once I’d made it it was like a weight lifted, and I felt the joy and freedom of internal consistency on this issue.
The biggest challenge I have with living vegan–whether with regards to diet or craft–is explaining my choice to others in a clear, open and humble way. Rather than focusing on the limitations of an animal-free lifestyle, and comparing plant-based or synthetic yarns nostalgically to animal fibres, I prefer to celebrate and enjoy the features vegan fibres do have and they way that blends can make the most of these features.T: What is your favorite yarn of the moment?
C: I find the vegan yarn selection grows every day, as there are plenty of crafters and gift-recipients out there with allergies to animal fibres who add to the animal-free demographic. I have some favourite handspun and hand-dyed faux cashmere from spinup and fuzzybunnyfibers on etsy that I’m saving for a special occasion, and I love workhorse yarns like Panda Cotton and Cotton Ease for socks and sweaters.
T: What got you started designing your own adorable patterns? What is the inspiration behind Nami?
C: I’ve never been very good at following patterns: I have this compulsive need to tweak and fiddle and make things my own, so writing patterns of my thought-up designs was a pretty logical next step for me.
Nami came out of a record-breaking summer when everything I owned just seemed too hot and sticky. I had some bamboo yarn, wanted to combine it with lace, and Nami was almost a happy accident, a collision of these three forces.
T: Can we expect more pattern releases from you in the near future?
C: I’m working on a sweater using my favourite method of construction, the bottom-up seamless simultaneous set-in sleeve method found in Elizabeth Zimmermann’s work. With the cooler weather in my end of the world (I live in Perth, Western Australia) my thoughts have also turned to layering pieces like vests, and I’d like to incorporate one of my other loves, stranded colourwork. Or something else may crop up and take my fancy…I’m very flighty like that!
So, How Do You Enter?
- Simply leave a comment on this post telling me what color you would knit Nami in. That’s it! Though, for my amusement please feel free to get creative with those color names.
- The contest will close on Sunday, May 15th at 11:59 p.m. and the winners will be announced on Monday, May 16th.
- Be sure to include your email address so I can contact you if you win.
- This contest is open to international folks.