Friday, 28 November 2014

november flurries

i have been neglecting this space of late. the work days are long, the sun is out for shorter hours, and my weekends have been spent with people i care about and catching up on knitting and design projects. basically, i haven't had much time to write. or to take photos (the shorter days definitely play into that). but life is lovely (minus the daily world news, which sucks a lot lately and i don't really know how to articulate how much it sucks), and snow is finally on the ground here on the prairies.

i do have news though! ok, here it is in list form (because i love lists):

1) #pollinationkal is being extended until at least mid-december. i feel like november has just flown by, and suspect that december will as well. so at this point, consider it extended until december 15th. potentially until december 31st though. partially due to the next entry on the list…

buy pollination here.
2) my lovely friend liz is doing an energy trade of sorts with me! she's a graphic designer and is turning my handwriting into a digital font, and i'm knitting her something in exchange. so that means i may be holding off on releasing new patterns and updates until after she's done, because i don't want to do double the work within two weeks of release.

3a) i'm naturally dyeing yarn! and it'll be for sale! at this point, i'm prepping for a show that will be happening here in winnipeg in the spring, but if you want a custom dye, give me a shout. i'm more than happy to do custom work right now. i'm really loving the experimentation! currently i have fingering weight and worsted weight yarn in semi-solids, and i'll be getting some sock blanks soon that will become gradients and potentially stripes. follow my instagram to keep up with my dyeing adventures.

3b) the yarn will be combined with my patterns to be released as kits. and i'm working with a local artisan to get handmade buttons made out of salvaged wood, which will also find their way into some of the kits. same deal in terms of the yarn with regards to custom orders, since most of the product will need to stick around for the spring show.

4) i have five new patterns that will be released as soon as i have the new font (one of them will be a freebie!) and a new shawl pattern that will come out at the end of next month. which means i'll have a slightly more consistent presence here at least!

ok, now that those are all said and done, i'm going to finish with a few photos that will function as catch-up about what's happened in my life in the past couple of months. this upcoming week is full of hang-outs and plans and shows and lovely wonderful people, so i probably will go back to the usual radio silence for a bit. but rest assured, i'll pick up the blogging pace in a bit! i do miss it.

i spent canadian thanksgiving with my parents and our dog at the place i spent every thanksgiving growing up. it was perfect.

my roommate and i had a double date at the corn maze, and there were sheep!!!

the infamous wedding quilt. 

Tuesday, 18 November 2014

drool-worthy #13 - "escher" by alexis winslow

i'm still doing a rather poor job of maintaining this space right now (if you want to keep up with me on social media these days, instagram will be your best bet), but i had to make a point of drooling over a pattern from the latest wool people collection! check out escher by alexis winslow!

it's one of the most stunning pieces of knitwear (and just general clothing) design i've seen recently. i desperately want to cast it on my needles, but i have too many designs of my own to deal with right now to justify a selfish knit. particularly a selfish knit that's a fingering-weight garment. sigh. i do so want to make it though!

it looks absurdly cozy, and i've been eyeing my closet and its lack of "nice" (i.e. i haven't already camped in it) cardigan layers for work and fancy events. working at a place that produces upscale art is very convenient for the femme in me, but not when i don't know what sweater to pair with my dresses and lipstick! 

i shall have to deal with not having the time to work on it for now, and spend the time instead dreaming up beautiful colour combinations for it instead.

don't forget that the pollination kal is going on this month! prizes for knits are always a good incentive for finishing gift knits...

speaking of designs, those of you who follow me on instagram will already know that i've got bulky knits galore coming off my needles at the moment. i've got a new design about to launch for testing (the charting has proven to take a longer time than i anticipated for formatting) and i have a mini collection within the when nature fought back collection that i hope to have ready for the beginning of december. i've pared back my xmas knits considerably from last year, but i do still have one gift to knit, and i have some undies to deal with (thankfully, they have very patient and understanding future owners). once the bulky knits are done, i will be moving back to fingering weight projects. there are too many ideas rolling around in my head and not enough time to knit them all. i would really like to get around to some selfish knitting sometime though...maybe i'll fit some in over the holidays just for kicks.

Saturday, 1 November 2014

kal time! - pollination

well, i am once again floored by the ravelry reaction to my shawls! pollination was downloaded well over 1000 times before the coupon code expired today, which is super exciting! do you know why? because that means all you folks can start on the pollination kal right away! and so can the rest of you - you just need to go grab a copy of the pattern.

the kal will work as follows:

-it starts today, november 1st, and will end at 11:59pm CST on november 30th. you've got one whole month to knit up pollination!

-to participate, hashtag your ravelry projects and social media (twitter, instagram, and facebook) photos with #pollinationkal, #sunflowerknit, and tag me if you can (@ash_alberg on twitter, sunflowerknit on instagram and facebook).

-i will do a random draw on december 1st for one winner among the finished projects. this means i need to see your fo photo before the end of the kal! you can post it on instagram, share it on ravelry, email me at ash.sunflowerknit[at], snail mail it to me if you happen to know me in person and know my address…(totally not sharing that info, sorry folks). i just need to see it. i will make a pot of names and draw one at random. that person will win a skein of hikoo american b.r.a.n.d fingering weight wool that i have naturally dyed by hand, using alum and red cabbage leaves.

check out that sexy periwinkle! cabbage is a strange, strange plant...

that's all there is to it! but, knowing me, there will also be random draws for various prizes throughout the month. i'm also currently putting together kits with my patterns and naturally dyed wool that i make in my kitchen, so maybe one of those will find its way into the prize pot…

number 4, 12, and 15! woot!
i'm just really excited that people are loving my patterns so much, so thank you all! it's very encouraging for me as a new designer to have so much support. cheers! and welcome to the start of the when nature fought back collection! expect the upcoming months to be full of new designs and more fun events. can't wait to see your photos!

an outtake from the photoshoot, in which i was a cold, cold tree gnome…with lipstick!