a moment of reflection
It's the last day of 2017 and all I can think about is knitting (I know, you're shocked, right?).
Seriously, though, there's a unique kind of energy in the air today, and it's got me feeling discombobulated. Today feels almost supercharged--the intersection of past, present, and future. 2017 is begging for reflection. 2018 is begging for contemplation. And my mind? It's swirling with knitty thoughts.
Luckily, I've come to understand that this kind of anxiety is a natural result of looking back and evaluating, looking forward and planning, growing and changing. And, while I can't say that I welcome this annual feeling of nausea-joy-hope-dread, I've finally made peace with it. Some people ring in the New Year with a party, some people celebrate with a peaceful evening of knitting and Netflix. I don't judge ;)
a year of expansion
For me, 2017 was definitely a year of expansion--my knowledge base, my social network, my comfort zone--they all grew this year. So did my waistline, but that's another story.
Speaking of expansion, it's hard to believe that cold comfort knits didn't even exist last year! The concept came to me in the Spring; a way to merge my life's story with my life's work. Thankfully, it has been lovingly embraced by the handmade community, serving as a powerful reminder that "By doing what you love, you inspire and awaken the hearts of others". Check out my 2017 #bestnine Instagram posts (below). It's hard to believe that all of these posts happened in one just one year!
2017 #bestnine Instagram posts
14 brand new patterns
Speaking of things that are hard to believe, I published fourteen patterns this year, and more than half of them made Ravelry's Hot Right Now Top 20! Now that's expansion.
spreading the knitty joy
Attaining a wider audience for my patterns was certainly the highlight of my year as a designer, but the highlight of my year as a person was convincing my local hospital to create a new volunteer role: Knitting Instructor. Now, one of the most uncomfortable risks I've ever taken has become one of the most rewarding. Every week patients eagerly await the arrival of "the knitting lady". Spreading the knitty joy kind of agrees with me :)
adding and subtracting
2017 wasn't just about designing and volunteering. I also created 60+ luxury natural-fibre hand-knits for cold comfort, enjoyed a new retail partnership, and participated in two festive holiday handmade markets. It was a wooly good year!
And, finally, the elephant in the room. When the year began, I was part of the staff at my LYS, and now I'm not. The third staff member to resign in as many months, I worked my last shift just two weeks ago.
I will miss helping customers choose the perfect yarns for their dreamy knitting projects, and being the "rescuer" of dropped stitches (new knitters are the cutest!). But, after learning some valuable lessons about trust and loyalty the hard way, through disappointment and empty promises, it's now time to move on, with a conscious decision to embrace an attitude of gratitude, for the opportunity to become a stronger, wiser person, and an even more passionate knitter and designer.
warm wooly wishes
A million thanks to everyone who chose to support a teeny tiny maker like me by purchasing a cold comfort hand-knit hat (or cowl, or gloves!) this season. Your support and encouragement allows me to live with a disability and create a meaningful life...plus a whole lot of hats!!! I am sincerely grateful for every purchase, and every kind word.
I'm Alexis, the knitter/designer behind cold comfort knits. My favourite animal is a sheep (obvi). My primary knitting fuel is coffee. And my inner child is actually an inner senior-citizen.