Friday, July 7, 2017

An Interview with...Alexis Adrienne

Once a week I post interviews with interesting people about their insights on their experience of working in the Knitting industry. I’ve noticed that every one of these individuals makes their living in a slightly different manner bringing their own unique presence to the knitting world.

You can find Alexis here and here on Ravelry.

Where do you find inspiration?
I derive my greatest inspiration from gorgeous natural fibres, like baby alpaca, llama, silk, and Merino wool. When it comes to designing, these yarns sort of "speak to me", and tell me what they want to become.

What is your favourite knitting technique?
The three-needle bind-off. It's such an effortless way to create a neat and tidy join.

Do you look at other designers’ work or are you afraid that you will be influenced by their designs?
I work in a yarn store, so I frequently help knitters execute patterns that aren't my own. I don't mind at all. It helps me stay current with trends in shape, colour etc.

How many sample/test knitters do you have working for you or do you do it all yourself?
So far, I've done it all myself, but I design accessories that focus on minimalism--to showcase the natural fibres. If I ever make the leap to garment design, I will definitely use test knitters.

Did you do a formal business plan?

No. Mine is more a "flying by the seat of her pants" kind of plan.

Do you use a tech editor?
No. I've looked into in the past, but it has always been cost-prohibitive, relative to my expected return from pattern sales.

How do you deal with criticism?

Not as well I'd like, to be honest. I'm a sensitive person, and my feelings get hurt easily. My challenge has been to separate the useless, judgmental criticism, from the helpful, constructive type. When I can recognize criticism as constructive, I'm more able to see it as an opportunity to improve, and not take it so personally.

How long did it take for you to be able to support yourself?
I'll let you know if/when that happens! Knitwear design is still a supplement to my income.

What advice would you give someone who wants to pursue a career in knitting?

Love your work. Because it's a lot of work! Is knitting your true passion? If not, keep searching. If so, commit yourself fully. Get connected, learn new techniques; never stop working and growing. Just be sure to know in your heart whether knitting is your hobby, or your career. It's an important distinction to make.

What’s next for you?

I'm excited to have just launched It's an online resource I created to share my love of knitting, and my belief in the power of "handmade" with the world. It's small now, but as it grows it will contain and increasing number of my designs--offered as free patterns--plus tutorials, interesting features, links to other cool resources, and much more! 

PS: my Instagram handle is now @coldcomfortknits, if you want to "stay in the loop", LOL.


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