Thanks for stopping by! As this is my first blog post, it seems like an appropriate time to introduce myself and to share a little about this new undertaking of mine that is “b.Woolens” …
First off, I am a twenty-something (edging close to thirty-something) native of the Pacific Northwest.
I love this beautiful valley where I live. I am wife to one entrepreneur, and mother to two (furry and four-legged) creatures.
I have a BA in English Literature and an MA in Art History. I love British literature and French art. Thanks to my husband I am also terribly fond of jazz and blues of the 20s and 30s. Thanks to my parents I love old movies and fashion from the 30s and 40s. And, most importantly for our purposes here…I love to knit.
Knitting is my high school sweet heart. When I was fourteen I taught myself the basics, using a 1979 edition of “Reader’s Digests Complete Guide to Needle Work” that my grandmother gave me. The fiber arts were experiencing a micro Renaissance in my high school at the time, for two whole weeks all the “cool” kids could be seen working away on scarves in the halls at lunch and after school. And let me tell you I was the coolest 97 lb, flat-chested, choir/drama club president that school had even SEEN!
While the trend faded, my enthusiasm for knitting did not. For the next eight years or so I contentedly churned out red heart scarves (your welcome first boyfriend) and hats by the dozen. It wasn’t until after college when I had taken my first job (as a receptionist) I suddenly found myself in a need of some mental stimulation, that discovered Ravelry, and the glorious black-hole that are knitting blogs. The amazing fiber-arts community made possible by the internet inspired me and made challenges like mittens and socks attainable. It was also thanks to knitting blogs like the Yarn Harlot, that I became aware of the wide world of wool, started to develop more discerning tastes in my fiber choices.
And then finally, in my fairy tale romance with yarn, the narrative climaxed. I achieved every knitting addict’s dream…I got a job in a yarn shop!
Prior to this I had been a relatively solitary knitter, working and learning on my own. My habit was a quirk in my non-knitting circle of friends, who kept track of me by following the sound of clacking needles and the trail of lost stitch markers. Now, at the yarn shop, I found myself in the midst of a flourishing community of knitters, physical rather than cyber. Portland is an amazing place filled with an incredible arts-and-crafts culture, and it was wonderful to be a part of it. I learned so much as I was able to teach other knitters and learn new skills myself, about what we, the special unicorn breed that we are, prefer and look for in our patterns, yarns, notions, and friends (both knitting and non-knitting). It was there that I first had the opportunity to try my hand as a designer, and there that I began to develop the germ that would grow into b.Woolens.
b.Woolens itself has been growing in my head and on the pages of various discarded notebooks for the last several years. And now it is finally beginning to materialize. I am setting out to design a line of patterns that are representative of my own experiences as a knitter: useful and educational for the self-taught knitter, timeless and nostalgic and evocative of the vintage styles and vibes that I love, comforting and classic, like the fibers that come out of the pacific northwest that I love so much. I love to try new things, and this adventure of learning how to be a knitwear designer is definitely new for me. It is my hope that I can utilize this blog to share in my adventure as I stumble my way through learning about design in the same way that I have knitting itself. It is my hope that my own journey might inspire yours, or at the very least create a space where we can both learn a little something together.
Thanks for visiting!